Buckle up for some meme-worthy content. I didn’t believe it at first either. But news like this generally informs fans of two things. One, that the seemingly immortal series GINTAMA has a live-action television show. The anime has an amazingly sarcastic brand of humor that translates quite cleanly into live-action. And, two, and more to the point, it also means that GINTAMA’s usual tangential references to DRAGON BALL are about to get much more direct.

We can see this in a new trailer released for the live-action miniseries GINTAMA 2: THE STRANGE AND UNUSUAL GINTAMA-CHAN released on Youtube. This sneak peak at the crossover features all the usual GINTAMA characters as well as a few hilariously weird looking versions of DRAGON BALL characters like Goku.

GINTAMA characters dressing up as characters from DRAGON BALL.
GINTAMA doing a DRAGON BALL gag in the anime | Image: Crunchyroll

For those who haven’t heard of GINTAMA, the series is one of the strangest comedy shonen out there. The story is set in an alternate sci-fi version of Japan’s Edo period. In this bizarre take on history, Japan is invaded by aliens known as Amanto, or Sky People. Surprisingly, Japan’s shogun realizes he’s outclassed militarily and quickly surrenders to the aliens. As part of that surrender, he grants the Sky People full access to Japan and bans humans from carrying swords in public. The aliens essentially make the shogunate into a puppet government for their own ends.

Protagonist Gin is a strange samurai who makes money doing odd jobs. But unlike a normal samurai, most of Gin’s jobs involve criminals or ridiculous scenarios. So, he’s often in trouble with the police and the government. The result of all of this is an episodic series focusing on Gin’s misadventures in a comedic fashion.

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The Exciting Crossover

As you can see from the image above, GINTAMA’s references are everything but subtle. The show carves a niche among shonen anime by poking fun at common cliches. Jokes about standard shonen tropes like shouting the names of moves or powering up dramatically are common. And, even when there’s content unique to the GINTAMA world, it never takes itself too seriously.

This sardonic form of humor mixed with occasional action makes for a super lighthearted show. And, because its main component is the comedy, GINTAMA works incredibly well as a live-action web drama too. That makes it the perfect candidate for a crossover too since lazily thrown together DRAGON BALL costumes are a joke in and of themselves. Check out the Youtube preview below:

The trailer gives you a good feel for the web drama’s general comedic vibe. The jokes are irreverent and the references incredibly direct. All in all, it’s a great way to connect the two series. Especially given the fact that DRAGON BALL and GINTAMA have been around for years, they’re great candidates for this kind of simple crossover. Most importantly, both are funny on there own and definitely funnier together.

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An Unexpectedly Great Combo from DRAGON BALL and GINTAMA!

This collaboration takes place within the second iteration of the GINTAMA-based web drama. You can find information for the first version and this version here. The first episode of this three-episode arc will stream weekly on NTT DoCoMo’s online video streaming service dTV beginning August 18.

For those looking to check out the GINTAMA or DRAGON BALL anime, both are available on Crunchyroll.

Featured image from dTV.

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