Goku is loosely based on the character Sun Wukong from Journey to the West (Chinese adventure stories). He is also based on Akira Torriyama, the creator of Dragon Ball, characters in an earlier series called Dragon Boy. Like the character from Journey to the West, Goku has some monkey traits. Unlike Sun Wukong, Goku doesn't actually look like a monkey. Being a fighter, Goku's uniform is based on one of Shaolin Monks from China. Goku is supposed to be an alien called a Sayian from a planet called Vegeta. According to the story line, Sayians are supposed to be killing machines and Goku was sent to earth as a baby to destroy it, but he ended up bonking his head and he came to like earth.
Goku also has many abilities. He can shoot fireballs or energy blasts from his hand and has the ability to fight around in the air. He can also change his appearance by going Super Sayian. This requires that he change his hair color to blond and also his hair usually grows larger. Probably his greatest ability is that he can always come back to life. It doesn't matter if he died in every episode, he always came back to life. This is because no one can really die in a kid show except the bad guys.