The New Threat (ミニ悟空はおぼっちゃま! ボク悟飯です, Mini Goku wa Obotchama! Boku Gohan Desu; lit. "Mini-Goku is an Overprotected Boy! I am Gohan") is the first episode of the Vegeta Saga and the uncut Dragon Ball Z series. Its original Japanese air date was April 26, 1989. Its original American date was June 14, 2005. It features the debut of Goku's son, Gohan, and his brother Raditz in the anime.
The episode begins with Chi-Chi calling for her son, Gohan. The scene goes to Goku, hopping though the forest behind his house looking for some firewood. After finding and knocking down one of the largest trees in the forest with one punch, he picks it up and heads for home. When he gets there, Chi-Chi asks him to go out into the woods and look for Gohan, so they can go to Kame House. Goku agrees, and Chi-Chi tells him to take the Flying Nimbus so they are not late.
Meanwhile, a Farmer is working in a field, putting a stack of hay into his truck, when he hears a strange noise. He looks up to see a meteorite fall and crash in the fields. The farmer asks himself, "why me?" and gets in his truck to check it out. The farmer takes his pea-shooter with him for protection. He gets to the crater and sees it was not a meteorite at all, but a steel ball of some sort. The ship opens up and a man steps out of it and realizes that everything on Earth is not destroyed. The man floats out of the crater, the farmer loads his gun and tells the alien (nervously) that he is on his property. The alien presses the button on his scouter and reads his Power Level, which is 5. The farmer shoots his gun, but the mysterious invader catches the bullet in his hand and flicks it back at him, seemingly killing the farmer. His scouter then picks up a high Power Level and he takes off after it, calling "Prepare yourself, Kakarot!".
The scene then goes to little Gohan in the woods, lost and scared. He calls out for his daddy, then starts to cry and runs through the woods. He stops at the giant stump, where Goku knocked down the tree, and sits down, looking up. He sees a beautiful blue and black butterfly land on the tree stump, and as he gets up, the butterfly flies away. Gohan chases after it and it lands on high up on a tree. Gohan tries to climb up to reach it, but miserably fails. He looks around and when he comes back, the butterfly flies away.
Gohan walks out of the woods and hears a noise in the bushes, and thinking it is the butterfly, walks up to it. Instead of a butterfly, it is a Sabertooth Cat. Gohan tries to run, but trips on the ground. Gohan decides the best way is to play dead, so he lays on the ground. The tiger becomes confused, and licks Gohan's face. It tastes him, then takes his red hat (that has a Dragon Ball on it) and runs away with it. Gohan gets up, and realizing that his hat is gone, starts crying, exclaiming his dad gave him that hat. He gets up and runs into the woods to chase the tiger. The tiger turns around, and seeing the crying boy chasing him, runs as fast as he can. The tiger tries to lose Gohan every way he can, going through bushes, around trees and over large rocks and he still does not lose him. The tiger finally takes a sharp turn and Gohan goes straight through bushes, and over a cliff. Gohan falls quickly, and as he falls, he faints. When Gohan wakes up, he is hanging from his tail upside down from a tree inches away from the ground and not hurt at all.
In a quick scene, Goku is by the stump Gohan was sitting on earlier, calling for him. It then, goes back to Gohan trying to get across a river using stepping stones. He barely gets on one, and calls for his mommy and daddy again. He gets across the river and is walking along the rocks when he sees a blue bird roosting on a log hanging over the river. He says "Hello" to the bird and gets on the log to talk to it. He introduces himself to it and it flies away, so he tries to reach for it, but the log unhinges itself from the rock and Gohan goes into the river with the log. When he tries to grab onto it, the log spins, sending him further down the river, and Gohan calls for his parents.
Meanwhile, Goku is looking around and he sees the Sabertooth Cat with a hat on. He recognizes it as Gohan's hat, so Goku asks the tiger if he has seen him. The tiger growls at Goku and Goku asks again, but more angrily, scaring the tiger. The hat drops off its head and it runs into the woods.
Back to Gohan, he is going down the river on the log when it hits a rock. Gohan lets go of the log and flails around trying to grab the log. He grabs it and calls for his mom and dad repeatedly. Above, Goku is looking for Gohan using the Flying Nimbus and sees his son flailing on the log in the river. Goku calls his name and Gohan calms down once he sees his father above him. He accidentally lets go of the log and grabs the end of it when it turns around. He flies down, and once he is about to reach Gohan, he must fly up because of a small cave the river goes into. Goku flies up as fast as the Nimbus can go to get over the very large plateau. The cave ends at a waterfall, and before Goku can get to Gohan, Gohan goes over. Goku, thinking his son went over the edge, is about to jump over when he hears him crying above. He looks up to see Gohan crying on top of a tree branch hanging over the cliff, above the waterfall. Goku flies up with the Nimbus and Gohan jumps and hugs his dad, thanking his dad for saving him. Goku asks how he got up there. Gohan says that he lost his hat, and Goku puts it on, telling him to go get cleaned up so they can go to Master Roshi's.
Over a city, the mysterious alien is flying in disgust. The scene goes to the evil Piccolo in a wasteland, when he feels a huge power coming toward him. The alien lands and says he thought that Piccolo was this 'Kakarot'. He reads Piccolo's Power Level (which is 322) and says he would be a fool to attack him. Piccolo says he has no intention of starting a fight, but the alien says he does. Piccolo gets mad and fires an Explosive Demon Wave at him, thinking he has destroyed him. However, when the dust clears, the mysterious alien is not even hurt at all. He is about to attack Piccolo with an energy attack, when his scouter goes off. He flies off, saying it is Kakarot for sure. Piccolo gets down and breathes, saying how he hit him full force and he did not even flinch.
The mysterious Saiyan is flying towards the Power Level on his scouter and talks about how he still remembers the day they sent Kakarot to Earth.
- It is revealed Goku and Chi-Chi have a son, Gohan, named after Goku's adoptive grandfather.
- Gohan becomes lost in the wild but is later rescued by Goku.
- A mysterious alien lands on Earth and immediately takes his first victim.
- The alien meets Piccolo.
- Explosive Demon Wave - Used by Piccolo when engaging Raditz, to no effect.
- Begone! - Raditz was about to use it against Piccolo, but interrupted when his scouter senses Goku's power level.
- This is one of the very few episodes of Dragon Ball Z to feature new footage prior to the title screen. While this was done frequently in the original Dragon Ball, it was far less common in Dragon Ball Z. The other episodes are "The Heavens Tremble", "Krillin's Proposal" and "Frieza's Counterattack".
- A shot of the sun flickering flames as Raditz's ship flies by is taken almost verbatim from the intro to the original Dragon Ball.
- The first shot is of a mountain that looks exactly like Mount Frappe, except without the purple clouds on top, which had appeared a few episodes earlier in Dragon Ball.
- In the video game Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2, a What-If story is set in motion as soon as Piccolo blasts Raditz with his Explosive Demon Wave. In this storyline, instead of remaining harmless, he is injured pretty badly from this. More info at: "Fateful Brothers".
- The 9th Shunsuke Kikuchi music package for the franchise starts here. The cues were designated "M7XX" codes.
- In the Japanese version, this was the first episode to feature the 1st Cha-La Head-Cha-La opening. However, FUNimation opted to use the 2nd opening for the first 117 episodes. This was also the first episode to feature the "Goku and Gohan" eyecatches and the 1st ending song Detekoi Tobikiri Zenkai Power!, used for the first 199 episodes.
- The orange Turtle School uniform (with the turtle (亀) kanji in a white circle) makes its debut in this episode. Though Goku switched to a blue undershirt full-time, he was already depicted wearing one in the fourth version of the Dragon Ball ending song Romantic Ageru Yo (Japanese dub only) despite wearing a black undershirt in the series' final episodes.
- Gohan makes his debut in this episode.
- This is the first appearance of Goku's house.
- This is the first episode in the FUNimation dub to feature Nathan Johnson's score. This would be used up to episode 67.