Dragon Ball’s Roots Run Deeper Than You Think
If you’ve seen the Dragon Ball Saga’s new chapter, Dragon Ball Super, you may have noticed an unfamiliar face. Who was that funny little alien at the Golden Frieza v Goku fight? His name is Jaco the Galactic Patrolman and his story is deep-rooted into the DBZ Universe.
Policing the Galaxy
Jaco the Galactic Patrolman‘s story predates the events of Akira Toriyama‘s other brainchild, Dragon Ball. Although interesting on its own, it doubles as a prequel to the entire Dragon Ball Saga. Don’t let his goofy appearance and comical attitude confuse you. Jaco’s a badass fighter and worthy patroller of the galaxy.
How the (Dragon)ball Was Set in Motion…
Jaco’s story takes place roughly 10 years before the events of the original Dragon Ball anime. As a Galactic Patrolman, he is tasked with policing the galaxy and making sure every civilization is playing by the rules. That’s why when he was notified of a potential threat to Earth, he stepped in to investigate.
Jaco learned that an alien attack was headed to Earth and his mission was to prevent catastrophe. However, as he arrived, he crash landed on an island leaving him stranded. This island had one resident — a scientist named Omori — who was trying to perfect time travel.
Jaco is both intrigued and cautious because time travel is against intergalactic law. He decides to befriend the scientist, who offers to help repair his broken spaceship. It’s during this time that Jaco learns Omori’s motivation for building his time machine. Along with a group of scientists commissioned by the government, Omori was to study and perfect time travel. Sadly, during a test run, their machine malfunctioned, killing everyone on the island, including Omori’s wife. He was the sole survivor.
Although Jaco is a proud, and sometimes cowardly Galactic Patrolman who takes his job very seriously, he lets this slide. He explains to Omori that it was for the best that his machine did not work … because if it did, it was his job to lay waste to Earth to prevent its people from breaking intergalactic law. Yes … he could wipe out a planet by himself … with an Extinction Bomb!
Jaco Phone Home…
During a trip to town for parts, Jaco has a run-in with police while saving a girl from getting mugged. While helping the girl, he accidentally attacks the local law enforcement — and just like that, Jaco is a wanted man.
Tights, the young girl he saved, offers her assistance to both Jaco and Omori. She’s a nice source of funds and offers to purchase the supplies they need for their projects.
On the exact day the alien threat was expected to arrive, Jaco prepares to complete his mission. However, the authorities, hot on his tail, locate him on the island and attempt to capture him. In a rush to get Jaco out of danger, a massive problem arises. The rocket that was supposed to send Jaco and his ship into space malfunctions, threatening to destroy the nearby city.
Jaco is able to save both Tights, who was on the rocket, and the city. The authorities, who were present to witness Jaco’s heroism, suddenly have a change of heart. They vowed to keep Jaco’s presence a secret, and leave them to finish their work. Since Jaco’s way off Earth was now destroyed, they had to rethink.
It was during all this commotion that the alien “threat” arrived on Earth. Jaco, too busy rescuing Tights and the city, unknowingly misses the arrival. After noticing no attack was happening, he concluded that the alien invasion was a false alarm. Jaco’s mission was complete. As for the alien? Turns out it was actually baby Goku’s pod, which was escaping from Planet Vegeta.
When Tights’ family comes to the island for a visit, it’s revealed that her father is Dr. Briefs. Her little sister? None other than Bulma. While playing around, 5-year-old Bulma accidentally fixes Jaco’s spaceship! She proves to be a brilliant engineer even as a toddler. It was finally time to part ways.
Jaco, Omori, and Tights make a pact to reunite on the island in ten years. During this decade, Jaco took Tights with him to visit other planets which inspired her to become a science fiction writer. Tights was most recently seen in Dragon Ball Super, still writing her novels.
During their reunion, Jaco learns that Omori has purchased the island for himself. Bulma, now a super-genius, used technology from Jaco’s ship to create gadgets of all sorts. Before their final goodbye, Bulma mentions she is going on a special trip. She’s heard of these mysterious orbs made from a material unknown to Earth…
The final scenes in Jaco the Galactic Patrolman neatly segue into a familiar opening — a young Goku lugging a giant fish home…
Dragon Ball Super
Jaco the Galactic Patrolman reappears in the Dragon Ball Super storyline. He discovers that a reborn Frieza is headed to Earth to kill a Saiyan and destroy the planet. Realizing his mistake many years prior, he doesn’t want this happening. He now knows this is the particular Saiyan he was supposed to prevent from arriving on Earth long ago. Clearly there was a lot more to his sudden appearance in Dragon Ball Super than any average fan would realize…
Jaco’s story is an incredibly clever crossover between two Akira Toriyama stories. His tale has fun easter eggs for all Dragon Ball lovers. In fact, you can even say that Jaco had the power to stop the entire Dragon Ball Saga from ever happening, had he been successful in his original mission!