Toriyama had gotten so fed up with the franchise, he only made the character designs and left Toei to make whatever plot they could think of. The result was a mediocre show many came to hate as non-canon, since Toriyama, the genius of good storytelling, did not write a bunch of bullshit for somehow making the show any less terrible that it had already become. It’s kind of hypocritical on part of the fans to call it awful when most of them kept making fan fiction and fan art out of GT, regardless of not being canon. All it mattered was getting more damn Dragonball goddammit, so let’s stop complaining about something most eventually accepted as an excuse for writing and drawing. Toyotaro included.
The beginning of GT was somewhat promising, as it had to do with looking for the dragonballs all across the universe, with a time limit before Earth blows up. Goku becoming a kid again was an attempt to power him down, so he wouldn’t be spamming his teleport ability, or defeat everyone with SSJ3. There were still issues with the premise, such as retconning an extra set of dragonballs, found by Pilaf in Kami’s palace. Entering a place no mortal can simply walk in, was a plot hole.
But it was not the first time the plot didn’t make any sense and not even the biggest problem of GT. What really damaged the overall was how plain it was. Toriyama may have foddered everyone who was not a saiyan in Z, but he still bothered to show them trying to do something, as useless as it was. Toei didn’t even do that. By now there were two dozen super powerful heroes on Earth, aware of the situation, and nobody seemed to care much. They just send three children to gather the balls and did nothing thereafter, as if it wasn’t a big deal. That was the actual problem with GT. It didn’t know what to do with its cast.
Even if you tired to evaluate the story as a simple adventure with a small cast, like back in the beginning of the franchise, it was still not good, because the characters were not selfish jerks with character flaws, trying to backstab each other for personal gain. They were a team of generic good guys, facing every danger with a common goal in mind. And even the challenges they were encountering weren’t threatening, as the villains were easy to defeat.
It became somewhat more interesting when Baby was introduced as a major threat, a life form who could not only steal powers, but also possess anyone he was touching. His goal of avenging the deaths of his civilization at the hands of the saiyans was also very interesting, as it was leaving an opening for the heroes to have a personal connection with something from their past once again. Technically, he was a much better version of Cell.
Vegeta in particular could be facing the demons of his past when confronting this guy. Unfortunately, nothing of the sort happened. The only chance Vegeta got was a lame moustache, and Baby didn’t force anyone to consider the vanity of fighting, since he was simply brainwashing them with a touch. Mind control doesn’t leave any room to get philosophical.
As if that wasn’t enough of an issue, Goku was the one defeating him, as always, and not only he didn’t think about the constant problems his battle frenzy was causing, he also defeated Baby with another power-up that came seemingly out of nowhere. SSJ4 was, again, an interesting concept, as it was bringing back the saiyan tails and, in theory, was the next logical step in their evolution, as they could stack their giant ape forms atop their SSJ forms, while also having control of their battle frenzy. This could have been the ultimate answer to what Baby was representing. And again, nothing remotely smart came out of it, it was just another generic power-up Goku used for defeating a villain.
The ending to this arc was bizarre, since they failed to save the Earth. This could have been the chance to make humanity turn against the Z warriors in their frustration for losing their planet and having to relocate elsewhere. And not even that was treated like something important, since they kept living on a completely different planet and that was the end of it. So basically, this entire arc was a constant middle finger, as it kept throwing all these great concepts at you, without even bothering to do something with them.
The next one about Super 17 was so lazily written. Somehow the gates of hell open, somehow the bad guys build another android 17 in hell, and it somehow needed to fuse with the original for getting a power up. What was that bullshit, other than an excuse to show Goku fighting Frieza and Cell again? And even that wasn’t any fun, since they only used a freezing machine of all things, the lamest thing ever. And as before, the dead came back to life, which was technically the apocalypse, yet it meant nothing for the characters or humanity as a whole. There was no gravity behind these events, as if everyone had been completely desensitized. So what was the point of even making this crap? Because the shonentards wanted to see more damn Dragonballs goddammit.
Predictably, the last arc with the shadow dragons, suffered from the same issue. The dragonballs became evil after being abused for so many years and turned into monsters aiming to destroy everything. The heroes were facing the consequences of their pride and vanity. What did they do about it? Nothing. They just send the same kids to fix everything, since nothing matters. And seriously, as the strongest and final opponents, the shadow dragons looked so lame. How were you supposed to take them seriously when they looked like shit and were waiting to be defeated one at a time by a bunch of kids?
The final showdown between Gogeta and Omega Shenron was fun on a superficial level, but it had none of the energy of the earlier arcs. Everybody was moving so slowly despite getting constantly stronger, SJJ4 was nerfed to the point it can be achieved with a simple machine, and Pan was a useless addition, being there just for making embarrassing jokes. Even at the very end, GT proved to be full of good ideas that were never used properly. It was a shameless cashgrab with no passion for whatever was going on in it. That’s why it’s so bad and deserves no more than a 1/10.