Dragon Ball Super Volume 3 contains chapters 16 to 20 of Toyotaro’s adaptation of Akira Toriyama’s plot outline, all of which form the bulk of the “Future Trunks arc”. Once again there are some key differences in how Toyotaro has adapted the plot compared to how the anime team did. One key difference occurs in the first chapter of the volume which focuses entirely on Future Trunks’ recent past, has Trunks train with Supreme Kai and Kibito with the Z Sword, and then eventually defeat Dabura and Babidi, thus preventing Buu from being hatched in his timeline of events. They even give an excuse as to why this happened a lot later than it did in the original timeline that we know, and that’s simply that due to the Androids reducing Earth’s population by so many, it took Babidi 10 years to gather the required energy for Buu’s resurrection. It’s all very fanfic-like, but it’s enjoyable, more so than the 30 second scene of Trunks facing Dabura we see in the anime.
Another very obvious difference is in the anime where Goku Black, the mysterious villain who is re-destroying Trunks’ destroyed world, popped over to “our” timeline and fought with Goku before being sent back to the doomed world, where as here we have scenes of Trunks and co. training, then they soon head off to the dystopian hell to fight Goku Black for the first time there. That’s jumping the gun somewhat though, as we also get plenty of story revolving round Zamasu, a former Kai from Universe 10 who is training to be promoted one day to be the Supreme Kai of that universe. Sadly for the current Supreme Kai, he seems to view mortals as vermin who keep screwing up planets by… living on them. I can only guess that he thought Zamasu would change his ways or something, but let’s just say it doesn’t go that way.
To describe any more would be spoilery, but the action picks up by the end of the volume, plus Goku Black’s true identity is revealed along with a new form (as per usual for a Dragon Ball baddie!). Also true to form is the manga’s method of adaptation in that a lot of the plot is rushed through, though it’s not as bad as the previous arc, which had the whole final moments crammed into a few panels.
Toyotaro’s artwork continues to impress, it’s very true to Toriyama’s original style, and it gets across the action and comedy very well. The manga is quite thick too; despite only containing five chapters, they’re quite lengthy, making it comparable to manga volumes with more chapters in them. Unlike previous volumes there are no bonus chapters at the end of the book.
So Dragon Ball Super Volume 3 is a good book, full of story twists and plenty of action at the end, leading into Volume 4. It comes recommended if you want some Dragon Ball action, but maybe not so much if you’re looking for a thought-provoking page turner…