There was a time in the West when anime was seen as “just another kind of show”. It wasn’t being as well-received in places like the United States for one reason or another. Then, along came a show called Dragon Ball, and its sequel in Z. These shows helped bring anime to America and beyond in a big way, and helped start multiple waves of new anime and animation and the series itself has been strong over the years being put into shows, video games, big-budget movies, and more.
However, as ComicBook.com notes, the series in terms of sales hasn’t been the best in 2020. For example, in the last financial quarter (which is July-September), the series made 8.7 billion yen, whereas last year at that time it made over 10.8 billion yen. That’s a big difference.
Now, when you break down everything in those numbers you can see certain trends and why the financials have dipped a bit. The biggest one being that right now, the anime Dragon Ball Super is done and there has been no replacement or sequel series announced for it, which is a stark contrast to where we were last year when we had not just the series, but also the Broly movie which was very well received by fans, critics, and movie theaters.
It’s true there are spinoffs going on like with the video games and Heroes, but that’s not the same. And not so ironically, overseas licensing for the franchise is one of its biggest money-makers because of the franchise’s popularity in the west.
However, with no new anime announced and no clear direction for the franchise as it stands right now, it’s honestly very unclear what is going to happen next. And should nothing be announced soon, even in the midst of the pandemic, the sales of the franchise could continue to dip as other animes provide more content.