10 Dragon Ball characters who lost popularity over time

Tien Shinhan with his usual shroud (Image via Dragon Ball Z)
Tien Shinhan with his usual shroud (Image via Dragon Ball Z)

Dragon Ball has a growing number of characters with every new arc and piece of media we get. Some of them are beloved characters that will always be fan-favorites, while others were never a hit. Unfortunately, there is a third category, characters that were instant successes with viewers but later lost that charm.

Maybe it was because the story forgot about them, maybe they were turned into jokes that got old over time, or maybe it was just hard for them to keep up with new and stronger opponents. In this article, we will present 10 Dragon Ball characters who have lost their popularity.

Disclaimer: This article is based upon the author’s opinion and is in no particular order. It will contain minor spoilers for Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball Super.

A look at some Dragon Ball characters who became less popular with time

1) Launch

Launch was one of the most iconic characters back when Dragon Ball started. She used to be a recurring character that gained popularity because of her kind and friendly good side, and her brash and daring bad side. Every time she would sneeze, these sides would come out, and fans really enjoyed her character for a while.

But after Dragon Ball was over, we hardly ever saw her again, and even her relationship with Tien ended during their time off-screen. All her popularity started to dissipate after a long time without any relevant appearances in the series. Although she was never one of the most popular characters, it is sad to see her be forgotten like this.

2) Yajirobe


When Yajirobe first appeared during Dragon Ball, his abilities with the sword were really impressive. And during the Saiyan invasion, he was crucial to our hero’s victory as he cut Vegeta’s tail, which allowed everyone else to have an easier time fighting him.

But since then, his appearances became more and more scarce and he didn't appear for a long time. And if he were to appear, he would not be of any help to the history. Yajirobe simply became a joke for the viewers. He did play a role again during Dragon Ball Super’s Future Trunks arc, but even then it was not that big.

3) Majin Buu


Majin Buu was one of the biggest villains during the last part of Dragon Ball Z. He was made of a material that allowed him to regenerate, absorb opponents, and also transform. His first form was really popular among the fans and he was not really evil, having been influenced from the former supreme Kaioshin of universe 7, and acted more like a kid.

Buu normally just wanted to be entertained, eat sweets, and enjoy the day with the people he was attached to, like Mr. Satan. But his amazing fighting skills are rarely seen these days. He is still a powerful warrior, but his lazy nature has left him behind some other characters.

4) Videl


Videl was a pretty popular character when she first appeared in the series. She was a fierce fighter who wanted to do the right thing and become a hero to the people of the world like her father.

She was also invested in discovering Gohan’s secret, his identity as the Great Saiyaman. Her chemistry with Goku’s son was also something really refreshing in the show, and they became one of the best couples in the series.

After the Majin Buu saga, her personality and her character changed pretty drastically. She stopped fighting, something she loved to do, became calmer, and her training with Gohan never continued. This lost her a lot of fans who loved her character traits, and seeing her changed this much disappointed them

5) Roshi


Master Roshi was once the strongest man on Earth. He taught Goku and Krillin, and was one of the best fighters, even beating Goku during a tournament finals. He was always willing to fight against the strongest of opponents, and although his attitude was normally comedic, he was a serious character.

But through most of Dragon Ball Z, Roshi was only used for his comedic role, barely given anything to do during the bigger moments of the series. It was great to see him return to his role as Goku's teacher and Earth's powerful warrior during the Tournament of power in Dragon Ball Super.

6) Krillin


Krillin is Goku’s best friend and most loyal companion. He has been by his side since the beginning, training with him under Roshi’s eye when they were children. Even though he was not as strong or resilient as Goku, he was never one to back down from a fight. Krillin is always willing to put his life on the line if he needs to.

His constant defeats, his deaths and his lack of training made him nothing more than moral support during a big part of the series. Although it was great to see him get back in action during Dragon Ball Super, it is sadly probable that he is not going to play any important roles soon anyway.

7) Yamcha


Yamcha was one of Goku’s first opponents and friends from the beginning. A strong bandit that could use tons of different techniques to overwhelm his opponents, and a romantic interest for Bulma. But after the events of Dragon Ball, Yamcha started to become a background character.

After his defeat against a Saibaman during the Saiyan invasion in Dragon Ball Z, he became a joke and was not able to really go against stronger opponents. He is still one of the strongest humans on the planet, but with more and more godly and galactic foes to defeat, he has been relegated to the sidelines.

8) Goten


Goten was a major player during the Majin Buu saga. He's a prodigy who could get into a Super Saiyan state when he was only seven years old. His rivalry with Trunks was awesome to see, and they were a much-needed light in a somber season. But unlike Trunks, Goten did not have a chance to shine during Dragon Ball Super.

Kid Trunks has also been left behind since the Buu saga, but his adult version made a reappearance. Goten unfortunately has not had a chance like that in the series. Let's hope this endearing Saiyan kid will be able to shine again soon.

9) Gohan


There was a time when Gohan was one of the fans favorite characters ever. After his fight with Cell, and training to unlock all his hidden potential, Gohan was supposed to be the strongest fighter of all.

But then he was defeated with a simple trick from Majin Buu, and when Dragon Ball Super came out, he was shown to have left martial arts almost entirely.

He became less of a warrior and more of a scholar, a change that definitely fit his character, but made fans really annoyed. During Tournament of Power, he was able to obtain his full power again. The upcoming movie could boost him into a fan-favorite position again, but only time can tell.

10) Tien Shinhan


Tien was one of the strongest opponents Goku ever faced during his childhood. Tien’s abilities where amazing, and his fighting skills even allowed him to beat Goku the first time they fought. After that, he was defeated pretty easily by Nappa, and his time in the other world was not of much relevance to the viewers.

Then the Cell saga started and his contributions were small but significant. Unfortunately, that was the last time we would see him in a long while. It was not until Dragon Ball Super arrived that we would see him again, even for a short time. Poor Tien will probably never be as popular as he was back then.

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