Mallissa Wiley

Written by Mallissa Wiley

Modified & Updated: 31 May 2024

Jessica Corbett

Reviewed by Jessica Corbett


Akira Toriyama is a name that resonates with millions of anime and manga lovers around the world. As the creative genius behind the immensely popular series Dragon Ball, Toriyama has solidified his place in the realm of entertainment. However, there is much more to this talented artist and writer than just Dragon Ball. From his early beginnings as a manga artist to his numerous contributions to the gaming industry, Toriyama’s impact on pop culture is undeniable. In this article, we will delve into 21 captivating facts about Akira Toriyama, shedding light on his fascinating life, his artistic journey, and his enduring legacy. So, sit back, relax, and prepare to be amazed by the incredible world of Akira Toriyama.

Key Takeaways:

  • Akira Toriyama, the creator of Dragon Ball, was inspired by Chinese folklore and has had a significant cultural impact worldwide, influencing artists and bridging the gap between Eastern and Western comic cultures.
  • Toriyama’s love for manga, cars, and food shines through in his works, creating captivating worlds and characters that continue to inspire new generations of fans and creators.
Table of Contents

Childhood Passion for Manga

Akira Toriyama’s love for manga began at a young age, with a particular fascination for the works of Osamu Tezuka, the legendary cartoonist known as the “God of Manga.”

The Birth of Dragon Ball

Akira Toriyama’s most iconic work, Dragon Ball, was first serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump in Little did he know that it would go on to become a global phenomenon, captivating fans around the world.

The Inspiration Behind Goku

Goku, the main protagonist of Dragon Ball, was inspired by the Chinese folktale character, Sun Wukong. Toriyama adapted this legendary character and gave him his own unique twist, creating one of the most beloved anime characters of all time.

Akira Toriyama’s Artistic Style

Toriyama is known for his distinctive art style, characterized by simple and clean lines, vibrant colors, and expressive character designs. His art style has influenced countless artists and has become synonymous with the Dragon Ball franchise.

The Success of Dr. Slump

Before Dragon Ball, Toriyama gained popularity with his manga series, Dr. Slump. The comedic adventures of the robot girl Arale won the hearts of readers and set the stage for Toriyama’s future success.

The Legendary Super Saiyan

Toriyama introduced the concept of the Super Saiyan, a powerful transformation that became a defining feature of the Dragon Ball series. This iconic form, with its golden hair and immense power, remains one of the most recognizable images in anime and manga.

Collaboration with Video Games

Akira Toriyama’s creativity extended beyond manga and anime. He collaborated with game developer Square Enix to create character designs for the popular video game series, Dragon Quest, adding his artistic touch to the gaming world.

Toriyama’s Love for Cars

Besides manga, Toriyama is also passionate about automobiles. He is an avid car collector and has incorporated his love for cars into his works, often featuring them in his manga and designing futuristic vehicles for his characters.

The Creation of Dragon Ball Z

Dragon Ball Z, the sequel to the original Dragon Ball series, further expanded the Dragon Ball universe. Toriyama’s storytelling skills and epic battles propelled the franchise to even greater heights, captivating millions of fans worldwide.

The Cultural Impact

The Dragon Ball series has had a significant cultural impact not just in Japan but across the globe. It has influenced popular culture, inspiring numerous parodies, references, and even its own conventions and fan gatherings.

Popularity in Japan

In Japan, Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball manga sold over 240 million copies, making it one of the best-selling manga series of all time. It continues to be beloved by fans and has become a cultural phenomenon within the country.

The Dragon Ball Anime Adaptation

The Dragon Ball manga was adapted into an anime series that aired from 1986 to The anime brought Toriyama’s vibrant characters to life and expanded the series’ fanbase beyond the realm of manga readers.

Collaborations with Other Manga Artists

Toriyama has collaborated with other renowned manga artists, such as Masakazu Katsura and Eiichiro Oda. These collaborations have resulted in unique illustrations and crossover specials that thrilled fans of both series.

Toriyama’s Love for Food

Akira Toriyama is known for incorporating his love for food into his manga. From the endless meals enjoyed by Goku to the delightful dishes featured in Dr. Slump, Toriyama’s passion for culinary delights shines through in his works.

The Timeless Appeal of Dragon Ball

Decades after its creation, Dragon Ball continues to captivate new generations of fans. With its engaging storylines, dynamic characters, and epic battles, the series has become a classic in the world of anime and manga.

Toriyama’s Influence on Future Generations

Akira Toriyama’s unique storytelling and artistic style have had a profound influence on aspiring manga artists and animators. Many creators cite him as an inspiration, and his legacy lives on through the works of those he has inspired.

The Cultural Exchange with Western Comics

Dragon Ball has played a part in bridging the gap between Eastern and Western comic book cultures. Its popularity has helped introduce new audiences to the world of manga and anime and fostered a greater appreciation for both art forms.

Recognition from the Government

In 2019, Akira Toriyama was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette by the Japanese government for his contributions to manga and popular culture. This prestigious honor recognizes his immense impact on the art form.

Akira Toriyama’s Humble Nature

Despite his immense success, Toriyama remains humble and down-to-earth. He often expresses gratitude to his fans and acknowledges the support he has received throughout his career.

The Creation of Akira Toriyama’s World

Toriyama is known for his ability to build immersive and intricate worlds within his works. From the captivating landscapes of Dragon Ball to the whimsical environments of Dr. Slump, each setting adds depth and richness to his storytelling.

The Enduring Legacy of Akira Toriyama

Akira Toriyama’s creativity and passion have left an indelible mark on the world of manga and anime. His characters, stories, and art continue to inspire and entertain fans around the globe, solidifying his status as a true legend in the industry.


Akira Toriyama is undoubtedly a legendary figure in the world of manga and anime. His contributions to the industry and the immense popularity of his work have made him a household name among fans worldwide. With his unique storytelling style, unforgettable characters, and groundbreaking achievements, Toriyama continues to capture the hearts of millions.

From the creation of Dragon Ball to his impressive resume of successful works, Toriyama’s talent and creativity have solidified his place as one of the most influential manga artists of all time. His impact on the genre cannot be overstated, and his legacy will certainly endure for generations to come.

Akira Toriyama’s journey in the world of manga and anime is a testament to the power of imagination, dedication, and a genuine passion for storytelling. As fans continue to cherish his works and eagerly anticipate his future projects, we can only marvel at the incredible legacy he has created.


Q: What is Akira Toriyama known for?

A: Akira Toriyama is most well-known for creating the immensely popular manga and anime series, Dragon Ball.

Q: How old is Akira Toriyama?

A: As of 2021, Akira Toriyama is 66 years old.

Q: What other manga has Akira Toriyama created?

A: In addition to Dragon Ball, Toriyama has created other notable manga series such as Dr. Slump, Jaco the Galactic Patrolman, and Cowa!.

Q: Has Akira Toriyama won any awards for his work?

A: Yes, Akira Toriyama has received numerous awards throughout his career, including the prestigious Shogakukan Manga Award and the Osamu Tezuka Cultural Prize.

Q: Has Dragon Ball been adapted into an anime series?

A: Yes, Dragon Ball has had multiple anime adaptations, including Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, and Dragon Ball Super, among others.

Q: What is Akira Toriyama’s artistic style like?

A: Akira Toriyama’s artistic style is characterized by his distinct character designs, vibrant illustrations, and the ability to convey dynamic action sequences with a sense of humor.

Q: Are there any future projects in the works from Akira Toriyama?

A: While specific details may not be available, Toriyama continues to be involved in projects related to his previous works, and fans eagerly anticipate any new creations from him.

Akira Toriyama's legacy continues to inspire fans worldwide. Explore more fascinating Dragon Ball Z facts, from uncovering Goku's Saiyan origins to discovering surprising details about his transformation in Dragon Ball Z. Whether you're a die-hard fan or just diving into Toriyama's work, there's always more to learn about this legendary manga artist and his beloved creations. So, get ready to embark on an exciting journey through the world of Dragon Ball and beyond!

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