Dragon Ball Z: The History of Trunks

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Defiance in the Face of Despair!! The Remaining Super Warriors: Gohan and Trunks (絶望への反抗!!残された超戦士・悟飯とトランクス, Zetsubou e no Hankou!! Nokosareta Chousenshi · Gohan to Torankusu), known in the United States as Dragon Ball Z: The History of Trunks, is an hour-long TV Special (#2) that is part of the Dragon Ball Z anime series. It was originally released in Japan on February 24, 1993 between "The Games Begin" and "Losers Fight First". FUNimation dubbed it into English and was released for the first time in English on October 25, 2000. The special was re-released in a remastered box set bundled with Dragon Ball Z: Bardock: The Father of Goku in May 2008. Roughly a year later, FUNimation released a remastered single version on September 15, 2009.

The History of Trunks tells the story of Future Trunks and his life during the time when the androids have the world under siege. It is unique among Dragon Ball films/TV Specials since it is actually based on a brief chapter in the manga entitled "Trunks The History: The Lone Warrior"


Death of the Z Warriors

Future Goku shortly after his death from the Heart Virus.

The film opens with Future Son Goku's tragic death from a radical Heart Virus and the death of the Z Warriors at the hands of Future Artificial Human No. 17 and Future Artificial Human No. 18 around six months later on May 10th, 767 Age. Unfortunately, the Z Warriors were unable to be wished back to life because the Dragon Balls were permanently unusable due to Future Piccolo's death, which had also killed Kami.

Siege of the Androids

Super Saiyan Future Gohan fighting against Future No. 17.‎

The TV Special moves thirteen years into the future where we meet a fourteen year old Trunks and twenty-three year old Gohan. Gohan is the only one able to stand against the Androids, ever since he became a Super Saiyan after witnessing the deaths of the other Z Warriors. Gohan trains Trunks in fighting and power, who comes very close to becoming a Super Saiyan as well. One day, The Androids attack an amusement park, where Gohan and Trunks arrive for battle. #17 takes on Gohan while #18 watches. Gohan transforms into a Super Saiyan and, despite a few lucky hits by the android, quickly takes control of the fight.

However, #18 joins the fight and the two begin to overtake Gohan. Trunks, though no match for the Androids, comes to Gohan's aid and fights with #18. He manages to fight her for a minute before he is easily defeated, but Gohan saves him from death, and they both hide in the debris of the park. The androids, unable to find them, bomb the park in hopes of drawing them out of hiding. Gohan and Trunks survive the blast but at the cost of Gohan's left arm, which is blown off. Gohan then gives Trunks a Senzu bean, saving him from death yet again. Trunks brings Gohan back to Capsule Corporation where he recovers and resumes training Trunks.

Future Gohan's death

Future Gohan being killed by Future by Future No. 17 and Future No. 18.

The training is stopped short when the androids attack a nearby city. Trunks pleads to fight, but Gohan knocks him unconscious to stop him from joining the battle. The one-armed Super Saiyan ambushes #17, and despite his handicap, puts up a long and suspenseful fight against the androids. He meets his end when the androids gang up on him in the rain and knock him to the ground. They then use their Accel Dance technique, killing the fallen warrior. Trunks is awakened when his mentors energy vanishes. Upon searching the city, Trunks finds Gohan's dead body. The rage from within him is unleashed and Trunks transforms into a Super Saiyan.

One last hope

The story moves forward three years later. Trunks walks in on Bulma while she is working on the time machine, and tells her that he doesn't need anyone from the past helping him beat the androids since he is a Super Saiyan. She reminds him that Gohan was also a Super Saiyan, which obviously was not enough. A news bulletin on the radio announces that the androids are attacking a nearby city, and Trunks goes off to fight them despite Bulma's pleas. He finds the androids in the ruined city which they destroyed, and engages in battle with them. However, the young Super Saiyan is completely outclassed and can barely put up a fight. Trunks is badly beaten by the merely-toying androids, and miraculously survives a large blast of energy from Android #18. Trunks awakens in his house with his mother Bulma by his side. After a brief talk, he decides to go in the time machine (once it's finally ready, which is about six months to a year later) to give the heart medicine to Goku.

Free the Future

Main article: Free the Future

Trunks' timeline is shown again for the final time during the episode Free the Future. Trunks returns to the future and tells Bulma about everything that had transpired in the past after he had gone back to help Goku and the others with the Androids. Just then it comes over the radio that Androids 17 and 18 are once again attacking, and Trunks rushes off to confront them for the final time. Trunks engages the Androids in battle and neither are able to even hit him once, he then destroys them both but states the future isn't safe yet. Sometime later, the Cell of Trunks' timeline appears and attempts to steal his time machine just as he did in another alternate timeline, only this time, Trunks destroys him, thus finally bringing peace back to the future and restoring natural order.

Turning points

Those who died

  • Future Goku (died of a heart virus six months prior to the androids attack, roughly November - December, 766 Age).
  • Future Piccolo (was killed by #18 on May 10th, 767 Age).
  • Nail (because he became one with Piccolo, he died along with him).
  • Kami (died when Piccolo was killed).
  • Future Vegeta (was killed by #17 on May 10th, 767 Age).
  • Future Tien (killed by #18 on May 10th, 767 Age).
  • Future Yamcha (killed by #17 on May 10th, 767 Age).
  • Future Krillin (killed by the androids on May 10th, 767 Age).
  • Future Chiaotzu (killed by the androids (although not shown in the tv series or the special) on May 10th, 767 Age).
  • Future Yajirobe (killed by the androids (shown in a flashback in the series, but not in this special))
  • Future Gohan (managed to survive the initial battle, but is eventually killed thirteen years later in 780 Age).
  • Dr. Brief (may have died from natural cause or was killed when the androids destroyed West City.)
  • Approximately two thirds of the Earth's population about thirteen years after the androids appearance.

Those who survived

  • Trunks (was a baby when the androids attacked and he survived the attack on West City).
  • Future Bulma (managed to survive the onslaught on West City).
  • Future Master Roshi (was on his island).
  • Future Puar (was on Master Roshi's island).
  • Oolong (was on Master Roshi's island).
  • Future Turtle (was on Master Roshi's island).
  • Future Chi-Chi (was at her home in the mountains).
  • Future Ox-King (was at Chi Chi's home).
  • Mr. Popo (It is assumed he survived, he may have died in exile later or lived alone on Kami's lookout).
  • Korin (Was in his tower).

Characters not born due to the alternate timeline events

  • Goten (Goku died of a heart disease).
  • Bulla (Vegeta was killed by the Androids).
  • Marron (Krillin was killed by the Androids and Android 18 never had a change of heart).
  • Pan (Gohan never met Videl).
  • Goku Jr. (Pan never existed).
  • Vegeta Jr. (there is a chance he wasn't born because it is not known whether Vegeta Jr. was family of Trunks or Bulla)

Notable differences from the anime and manga

The aforementioned manga version was at the end of volume 33 and the full title was: "Dragon Ball, Trunks The Story, The Lone Warrior (Side Story)"

  • No scene with both Trunks and Gohan fighting the Androids together.
  • Trunks is already a Super Saiyan, as shown when he and Gohan are training together at the beginning.
  • The Androids do not gang up on Gohan, and only #17 attacks.
  • There is no rain.
  • Android #17 tells him that he didn't even use half his power in their last battle.
  • The viewers see a horrified look on Gohan's face in one panel of the manga, after which the story cuts to Trunks waking and finding his sensei's dead body. Trunks cries and slams his fists into the ground but does not transform.
  • The manga then cuts to 3 years later, where like the special, Trunks rushes to avenge the death of everyone but fails miserably. However the fight between Trunks and the Androids is not seen at all and it cuts to 5 days later, where Trunks is recovering in a hospital.


In the U.S., The History of Trunks was first released to VHS on October 25, 2000 in two formats, Uncut and Edited. It was released to DVD that same year, with the uncut English version, as well as the original Japanese version. On February 19, 2008, it was released in as part of a remastered double feature DVD with Dragon Ball Z: Bardock: The Father of Goku, the second TV Special. The same double feature was released to Blu-ray on July 15, 2008. The film was released to DVD again on September 15, 2009 in a remastered single.

Cast list

Character name Voice actor (Japanese) Voice actor (English)
Future Trunks Brief Takeshi Kusao Eric Vale
Future Bulma Brief Hiromi Tsuru Tiffany Vollmer
Future Son Gohan Masako Nozawa Dameon Clarke (Adult)
Stephanie Nadolny (Kid)
Future Artificial Human No. 17 Shigeru Nakahara Chuck Huber
Future Artificial Human No. 18 Miki Itō Meredith McCoy
Future Son Chichi Naoko Watanabe Cynthia Cranz
Future Gyumao Daisuke Gōri Mark Britten (Original)
Kyle Hebert (Remastered)
Future Turtle Hermit Kōhei Miyauchi Mike McFarland
Future Oolong Naoki Tatsuta Bradford Jackson
Future Pu-erh Naoko Watanabe Monika Antonelli
Future Vegeta Ryo Horikawa Christopher Sabat
Future Piccolo Toshio Furukawa Christopher Sabat
Future Kuririn Mayumi Tanaka Sonny Strait
Future Yamucha Tōru Furuya Christopher Sabat
Future Tenshinhan Hirotaka Suzuoki John Burgmeier
Future Chaozu Hiroko Emori Monika Antonelli
Future Kame Daisuke Gōri Christopher R. Sabat
Narrator Joji Yanami Dale Kelly (Original)
Kyle Hebert (Remastered)


Original Japanese

Ending Theme

"青い風のHOPE" / "Aoi Kaze no HOPE" / "The Blue Wind’s HOPE"

Lyrics: Dai Satō
Music: Chiho Kiyooka
Arrangement: Kenji Yamamoto
Vocals: Hironobu Kageyama
Song Lyrics

FUNimation English dub

Featured battles

  • Z Fighters vs. Future Androids
  • Future Gohan (Super Saiyan) vs. Future Android 17
  • Future Gohan (Super Saiyan) vs. Future Androids
  • Future Trunks vs. Future Android 18
  • Future Gohan (Super Saiyan one-arm) vs. Future Androids
  • Future Trunks (Super Saiyan) vs. Future Androids
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