is a fictional character who first appears in the Dragon Ball manga created by Akira Toriyama, followed by three anime adaptations. She first appears in the first chapter first published in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine on December 3, 1984. She was originally portrayed as a secondary main character, next to the main protagonist Son Goku. Her role is quickly downplayed as the series continues, though she does continue her role as a supporting character for the remainder of the series. Bulma is the daughter of Dr. Briefs; the founder of Capsule Corp., a fictional corporation that creates special capsules that are often used to store objects of various sizes. Being the daughter of a brilliant scientist, Bulma is also a scientist, as well as an inventor and engineer. She is most credited for inventing the Dragon Radar, a fictional device that is specifically designed to detect the energy signal emitted by a Dragon Ball.
Bulma's role as an inventor becomes important at several points in the series. Several of her creations were major contributions to various plotlines, including a microband that could make her shrink, the time machine that brought her son Trunks to the past during Dragon Ball Z and the generator that allowed her husband Vegeta to achieve Super Saiyan 4 in Dragon Ball GT.
Bulma is a direct parody of the character Xuanzang from the Chinese novel Journey to the West. Even though Bulma's character parodies a monk, her Japanese name "Buruma" is a direct take on the word bloomers, which was a popular type of women's underwear in the early 20th century.
As with most characters in the Dragon Ball series, Bulma's name is consistent with those of the rest of her family. All of Bulma's family members are named after underclothing of some sort. Her father's name is "Dr. Briefs", while her son and daughter are named "Trunks" and "Bra" respectively.
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Official Site: Toei Animation
Links: Bulma Wikipedia page Bulma.NL Absolute Anime Bulma page