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A Complete Filler Guide to the Original Dragon Ball Anime

1986 to 1989 was the finest era of anime for me as the series that was released during this time has left many fond memories. Yes, I am talking about the original Dragon Ball series, which continues to have a meteoric impact on the current anime scene. 

Dragon Ball needs no introduction as this is the anime that shows Goku’s childhood. Goku is, no doubt, one of the most influential anime protagonists ever created. It focuses on his adventure of gathering the dragon balls that can grant any wish. 

It is crazy how the anime has spawned many sequels and shows that are entirely different from the original work. Yet, like all other anime shows, this iconic phenomenon does not get away without the expected filler content. 

The Dragon Ball anime has nine seasons and 24 filler episodes, including 21 fillers and three partial fillers, making up 16% of the total. Be it a classic or a new anime, shows that follow manga are fated to have fillers.

Let me guide you through the fillers with a quick list and let you decide if you want to watch it or skip it. 

Quick List

  • Manga Canon Episodes: 1-28, 34-41, 43, 46-78, 84-126, 133-148
  • Partial Filler Episodes: 29, 42, 44
  • Filler Episodes: 30-33, 45, 79-83, 127-132, 149-153

Filler List

  • Partial Filler Episodes (Also known as Mixed Canon/Filler episode, these are fillers but also have some of their content taken from manga)
Episode No.TitleSaga/ArcAirdate Watch Links
29The Roaming LakeRed Ribbon Army Saga1986-09-17Funimation
42The Secret of D.r FlappeRed Ribbon Army Saga1986-12-10Funimation
44Master Thief, HaskyRed Ribbon Army Saga1986-12-24Funimation
A Complete Filler Guide to the Original Dragon Ball Anime
Dragon Ball | Source: Fandom
  • Filler Episodes (These episodes are created to make time for the manga to release new chapters so that the anime does not run out of content)
Episode NoTitleSaga/ArcAirdateWatch Link
30Pilaf and the Mystery ForceRed Ribbon Saga1986-09-17Funimation
31Wedding Plans?Red Ribbon Saga1986-09-24Funimation
32The Flying Fortress – Vanished!Red Ribbon Saga1986-10-01Funimation
33The Legend of a DragonRed Ribbon Saga1986-10-08Funimation
45Danger in the AirRed Ribbon Saga1987-01-07Funimation
79Terror and PlagueFortuneteller Baba Saga1987-09-16Funimation
80Goku vs.Sky DragonFortuneteller Baba Saga1987-09-23Funimation
81Goku Goes to Demon LandFortuneteller Baba Saga1987-09-30Funimation
82The Rampage of InoShikaChoFortuneteller Baba Saga1987-10-07Funimation
83Which Way to Papaya Island?Tien Shinhan Saga1987-10-14Funimation
127Quicker than LightningPiccolo Jr Saga1988-09-21Funimation
128Secret of the WoodsPiccolo Jr Saga1988-09-28Funimation
129The Time RoomPiccolo Jr Saga1988-10-12Funimation
130Goku’s DollPiccolo Jr Saga 1988-10-19Funimation
131Walking Their Own WaysPiccolo Jr Saga1988-10-26Funimation
132Hotter than LavaPiccolo Jr Saga1988-12-02Funimation
149Dress in FlamesPiccolo Jr Saga1989-03-15Funimation
150The Fire-EaterPiccolo Jr Saga1989-03-22Funimation
151Outrageous OctagonPiccolo Jr Saga1989-04-05Funimation
152Mystery of the Dark WorldPiccolo Jr Saga1989-04-12Funimation
153The End, The BeginningPiccolo Jr Saga1989-04-19Funimation

Can You Skip The Filler Episodes?

Filler episodes are mostly a kind of nuisance in anime that just don’t make sense. Nevertheless, fillers may reveal crucial plot points regarding the main storyline, and it is only later that we realize we made a mistake by not watching the episode.

Talking about Dragon Ball, this show has fewer fillers than many classic anime that are still airing. I highly recommend you to watch some of the filler episodes of this anime.

Let me give you a list of filler that you can neglect and move on to the next canon episode with no regrets at all.

Goku And Vegeta | Source: Fandom
  • Pilaf and the Mystery Force (episode 30)
  • Wedding Plans? (episode 31)
  • The Flying Fortress – Vanished (episode 32)
  • The Legend of a Dragon (episode 33)
  • Danger in the Air (episode 45)
  • Which Way to Papaya Island? (episode 79)
  • Quicker than Lightning (episode 127)
  • Secret of the Woods (episode 128)
  • Goku’s Doll (episode 130)
  • Hotter than Lava (episode 131)
  • Dress in Flames (episode 132)

Conclusion

At best, the filler episodes are superfluous, but fans and viewers should think about the other aspects of releasing such fillers. These episodes are an inevitable part of watching an anime.

With only 24 total filler episodes, Dragon Ball completely adheres to the original work of Toriyama and has given us a franchise that this whole world is thankful for.

To watch filler is a personal preference, and it is entirely up to you whether you want to fully skip the episodes or simply sit back and enjoy the entire show.

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About Dragon Ball

Dragon Ball, Akira Toriyama’s brainchild, came into existence in 1984. It has spawned several manga, anime, films, and other media adaptations.

The initial series follows Son Goku and his adventures when he was a child. It is here that we are first introduced to Goku as he meets Bulma, Yamcha, and others.

He trains in martial arts and participates in the World Martial Arts Championship for the first time in this series.

Originally Written By Epic Dope

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Aaryan Sharma

Aaryan Sharma

Meet our Tech Wiz – he’s a true-blooded otaku and an encyclopedia of all things tech! Foodie to the hilt and the clandestine king of online food ordering! There is No Veg burger he doesn’t have an opinion on!

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