Japanese Title: Super Warrior Defeat!! I’ll Be The Winner
Original Release Date: July 9, 1994
English Release Date: September 13, 2005
Directed by: Yoshihiro Ueda
Screenplay by: Takao Koyama
Running Time: 46 minutes
Well, I hope you wanted more Broly following the last movie, because he’s back again. Breaking a tie with Cooler, this movie marks Broly’s third appearance in a Dragon Ball Z feature and it also means 3 out the last 4 movies all featured him as the main antagonist. When we last saw Broly (Vic Mignogna), he was getting blown up by the combined might of Goku, Gohan, and Goten. How could he have survived a triple Kamehameha? Well, he didn’t, and another person from that film is responsible for Broly’s return here.
The movie opens at a lab where a cackling, obviously evil guy, named Mr. Jaguar (Bill Townsley) is enjoying the specimens his team of scientists, led by Dr. Collie (Christopher Sabat), has produced for him. He plans to use them to take over the world or something, but also mentions how he wants to go after Earth’s hero. The camera lingers on one large tank containing a humanoid creation, and a tail flickers into the picture to let us in on a not so subtle secret about who inhabits this particular environment.
After the intro song, we’re taken to Satan City where Android 18 (Meredith McCoy) is attempting to collect payment from Mr. Satan (Chris Rager) for the events that transpired during the World Martial Arts tournament in the main series. In case you forgot, 18 was pitted against Satan in the finals and he convinced her to take a dive in exchange for riches. Before she can get the money out of him though, an odd fellow in a blue suede suit shows up, falls in the pool, and manages to get inside Satan’s mansion to issue him a challenge. Apparently Mr. Jaguar and Mr. Satan attended summer camp years back and he knows Satan’s dirty little secret – he once wet his pants! In order to keep this from reaching the press, Mr. Satan needs to accompany this guy, Men-Men (Jim Foronda) back to an island to face Mr. Jaguar, and since he failed to pay 18, she is going too. Goten (Kara Edwards) and Trunks (Laura Bailey), having been promised a big lunch from Krillin(Sonny Strait) once 18 gets paid, stow away in Men-Men’s flying car and head off to the remote island where Mr. Jaguar awaits.
Once they arrive at the island, Mr. Satan finds out he’s not to be squaring off against the diminutive little Jaguar, but against his Bio Men. These slimy, green and pink creations give him the creeps, and they’re also well beyond his fighting ability. Having no other recourse, he offers 18 more money to take care of them for him, and she’s happy to oblige.
Goten and Trunks, after having helped 18, go exploring in the lab and find all of the Bio Men still growing in their oversized test tubes. Trunks, having a genius scientist for a mom, is happy to share that information with anyone who will listen and does seem genuinely interested in what’s going on. Goten notices one of the specimens has a tail, and the two check it out and are startled to discover that it’s Broly! He soon awakens, and Goten and Trunks flee in terror. They go to talk some sense into the scientists about Broly, and find the shaman Maloja (Robert McCollum) whom they exposed as a fraud to his village in the previous movie. It was he who scraped up some of Broly’s blood after his defeat and sold it to Jaguar. His scientists utilized that to recreate Broly as one of Dr. Collie’s bio-monsters. Goten and Trunks are horrified, and decide the only thing they can do is destroy Broly themselves.
It’s a good thought, but the duo’s combined attack on the tube only succeeds in freeing Broly. Enraged at the sight of the two young Saiyans partly responsible for his death, Broly goes on an unstoppable rampage. At first, he looks like his old self, but his body soon begins to deteriorate into a grotesque pile of slime with red eyes. He kind of looks like a combination of Mukman from the Mighty Mutanimals, complete with his yellow hair poking out of the goo resembling spent banana peels, and also kind of like the Tyrant from Resident Evil since both feature a glowing, red, heart. Broly immediately attracts the attention of 18, who gets flattened almost right away, and it falls on Trunks and Goten to take him out.
Broly is apparently not as powerful in his bio state as he was in life since Trunks and Goten are able to go toe-to-toe with him, provided they attack in unison. The problem is, Broly has wrecked the lab all around him, and the weird purple goo that created him is seeping out. It’s acidic to all lifeforms, and Goten keeps getting pulled away from the fight to save people from certain death. Broly’s goo body also makes him seem invulnerable to real physical pain, and the boys are at a loss as to how they can destroy him. Trunks will figure out a plan though, and it involves utilizing his own buttocks in an antagonizing manner, but they need to also content with the the purple goo that threatens all of the island’s inhabitants, not just those in the lab.
I am happy to say, there will be no Goku (Sean Schemmel) saving the day. Even Piccolo and Vegeta decline to make an appearance to bail someone out, though Krillin will show up to fight at some point. Instead this one rests entirely on the young shoulders of Goten and Trunks. After seeing them upstaged by Gohan in the last film, it’s kind of nice to see them get to shine on their own. Trunks will even utilize a Kamehameha attack along with Goten, and also what looks to be his dad’s Final Flash. Goku does make a very brief cameo right before the end credits, but it has no baring on the story, because apparently we can’t have a Dragon Ball Z movie without at least one appearance from Goku (Gohan, on the other hand, is completely skipped for the first and only time).
Bio-Broly is often cited as the worst movie in the Dragon Ball Z film-verse and I’m actually happy to report that it wasn’t as bad as I expected. It doesn’t look particularly great, having a quality more in-line with the show as opposed to the other movies. There’s some jokes that kind of miss, especially early, and the Mr. Satan stuff does feel a bit redundant at this point. I like that character, for the most part, so it doesn’t bother me that much and I like that it attempts to resolve a plot point from the show. Broly has definitely overstayed his welcome at this point, but at least he’s largely mute in this one and we don’t get any silly “Kakarot!” yells out of him. His bio form is rather lame looking, and you could argue the movie didn’t need him and the bio monster could have been anyone.
In the end, this isn’t my least favorite of the Dragon Ball Z movies. I like that it allows other characters to shine, not just Goten and Trunks, but 18 as well. It’s quick and tidy, but if I had one lingering piece of criticism is why did they have to title it Bio-Broly? If we didn’t know that Broly was incoming it would have actually given that moment a little more weight. It’s setup like a Hollywood thriller, and even the fight is resolved in a similar manner as seen in The Terminator, and spoiling the reveal like that just feels like a waste. Dragon Ball Z rarely gets to surprise, so that’s a missed opportunity. It’s not that big a deal though, and I look forward to reexamining this film in a broader light when I eventually set out to ranking all of this movies when this feature is concluded.