Puar (プーアル Pūaru) is a character in the Dragon Ball metaseries created by Akira Toriyama. In the Harmony Gold dub from the 1980s, the character is known as Squeeker (not Sparkles, as is commonly quoted), and was voiced by Cheryl Chase.
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Often soft-spoken at times, Puar serves as Yamcha's constant companion. The two were originally a pair of desert thieves, robbing travelers whom would cross the area where they lived. On one such occasion, they finally meet Goku, Bulma and Oolong. The latter is recognized by Puar as an old schoolmate. After the meeting five of them team up and go on a hunt for the Dragon Balls, and eventually aid each other on later adventures.
During the very earliest sagas of Dragon Ball, Puar would sometimes use its shapeshifting powers to help the protagonists on their adventures. (For example, disguising himself as another person, becoming a sharp object, etc.) At Fortuneteller Baba's Palace where the last Dragon Ball had to be found, Puar teamed up with Upa to stop Fangs the Vampire, which they did with ease. Puar came out to help Yamcha when he was knocked unconscious and had his leg shattered at the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament, where it became a magic carpet.
However, as the manga and anime progress (before even the start of Dragon Ball Z) Puar is eventually reduced to the role of a background character. As the driving theme of the manga/anime is mostly fighting, Puar can do little more than react to the horrors of the latest and greatest villain. Puar makes two cameo appearances in Dragon Ball GT; episodes 40, Piccolo's Decision, and 64, Until We Meet Again. By the end of Dragon Ball GT, Yamcha returns to his vagabond life in the desert with Puar.
Puar hosts Yamcha's Tournament in Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3.
Puar is one of the few characters to survive in the "Trunks Timeline", as seen in the television special The History of Trunks. Puar is seen hidden in a submarine with Oolong, Master Roshi and Turtle.
There is some debate regarding Puar's gender. Despite being voiced by only female voice actors, the character was referred to as female numerous times in the anime, although Toriyama has indicated in interviews that he had considered Puar male while writing the manga. In the Japanese versions, Puar refers to himself as boku and is sometimes referred to as Puar-kun, hinting male characteristics. At the beginning of Dragon Ball, it used to be close to Yamcha who had an intense phobia of girls at the time. Some fans have suggested this as evidence that Puar is male, as Yamcha wasn't nervous around it. This is highly debatable however, as even if Puar was female Yamcha would be unlikely to consider "her" equivalent to a human woman. In addition, when Yamcha met Chi-Chi, he wasn't scared of her, which tends to support the conclusion that Yamcha is only afraid of women that he is attracted to.
The debate has never been completely resolved, and some fans believe that since shape-shifters can assume many different forms, though Oolong is obviously male, Puar's gender is a moot point.
Powers and abilities
Puar has the innate ability of flight or self-levitation as seen throughout the series. Having also learned how to master Shapeshifting by graduating from the Shapeshifting Academy, Puar can transform into anything, even inanimate objects. Unlike Oolong, Puar can hold a form as long as it likes; although strength is not increased by the transformation as such is unable to turn into something that can be used up, like fuel or food.
Notes and references
- ↑ The first attempt at dubbing the Dragon Ball anime was in the late 1980s by Harmony Gold, which featured bizarre name changes for nearly all the characters
- ↑ Dragon Ball manga, Akira Toriyama's "Ask Me Anything!" Corner, p. 196. ISBN 1569319219
- ↑ Dragon Ball manga, Akira Toriyama's "Ask Me Anything!" Corner, p. 194. ISBN 1569319219
- ↑ Dragon Ball manga, pp. 118-121. ISBN 9781569319208
|Yamcha • Oolong • Master Roshi • Turtle|