Dragonball raised me. As a kid all I ever wanted to do was sit in front of the TV and watch Goku roughing up the latest bad guy for a while and if I was forced to play outside you can bet your sweet ass I was practicing my Kamehameha or trying to turn Super Saiyan! So what with Dragonball FighterZ on the horizon and with me being Respawning’s resident DBZ geek I feel it’s my duty to make this list of the top 5 moments in Dragonball Z!
5. Tien Shinhan’s Kikoho Vs Semi Perfect Cell
One problem with Dragonball has always been the Saiyans far outclassing the human heroes to the point that previously vital side characters get written off and useless against the tougher enemies. So when Tien challenged Semi Perfect Cell after he’s already proven to be stronger than the Saiyan crushing androids and everyone’s favourite slug man Piccolo you can imagine that no one expected much. What follows is several minutes of Tien proving humans still have their place in the series with a massive display of power in one life draining attack that keeps Cell stuck down in a crater unable to move or counter. While Cell brushes off the attack when Tien’s energy is drained and proves to be totally unscathed his rage at being held back by a mere human just proves how badass Tien’s stand was and how he should NEVER be underestimated!
4. Goku’s First Super Saiyan Transformation
I’ll probably get a lot of flak for not putting this higher but fuck off it’s my list and I do what I want! We all know the scene. Goku has just witnessed the galactic tyrant Frieza (or Freeza if you’re a philistine) grievously injure Piccolo and LITERALLY blow up his best friend and resident punching bag Krillin and HE. IS. PISSED. Tapping into the immense rage Goku finally achieves the Super Saiyan transformation to a killer sound track and some sick animation as the planet Namek is shaken apart from the sheer power Goku exhibits. It’s a powerful scene in more ways than one and made several kids back in the day (myself included) erupt in tears and screams of joy.
3. Trunks Kills Frieza
So even with that massive power boost Goku STILL doesn’t kill Frieza… I mean he maims him and leaves him to die on an exploding planet but if you thought that would stop the universes greatest villain then you’re as deluded as your mum when she thought I’d call her back. Frieza comes to earth with some robocob add-ons, his dad and vengeance on the brain…processor…whatever his head is now. When he arrives though rather than Goku he’s confronted by a mysterious warrior with a sword and a bowl cut. The future hero Trunks. Trunks proceeds to make short work of Frieza’s men and not long after shows off his own Super Saiyan form and cuts the white and purple menace into pieces and vaporizes them for good measure. THAT’S how it’s done Goku! It’s an amazing character introduction and skyrockets Trunks to the top of a lot of fans favourite character lists.
2. Vegeta’s Final Explosion
Ah Vegeta. The definition of anti-hero and Goku’s fiercest rival and also if it matters my own personal favourite character. Vegeta is everything Goku isn’t. Ruthless, violent, rude and nursing a serious murder boner for Goku throughout most of the series all Geets wants to do it prove his superiority against Goku. So when evil wizard Babadi offers him a significant power boost in exchange for Vegeta’s servitude and removal of his inhibitions of course he took it! Becoming the immensely powerful Majin Vegeta he went on a veiny and callous rampage to provoke Goku into a final showdown however during the battle both realised the energy they released had awoken the monster Majin Buu. Vegeta realises he’s been quite the twat and decides to face Buu alone. Finally acknowledging his family and Goku’s friendship Vegeta unleashes ALL of his power in one dramatic explosion in an attempt to vaporise the pink silly putty villain. Although his sacrifice is in vain and Buu merely heals afterwards this final act was the finishing touch on Vegeta’s redemption arc and can’t be ignored as an absolute game changer.
1. The Father Son Kamehameha
How could it NOT be this! After all the pain and death caused by Cell throughout the series we finally get closure in the coolest way possible. After pushing Gohan too far and trigging the Super Saiyan 2 transformation. Cell has his neon green ass beaten all over the shop. Deciding to take the world with him Cell tries to rage quit and blow up himself and the planet but is stopped when Goku teleports them both to otherworld sacrificing himself to save the world again. However, with Cell’s regeneration and absorption abilities he soon returns with a massive power boost and almost immediately decides to kill everyone with a MASSIVE Kamehameha. Even with a broken arm though Gohan is there to stop him. Countering with his own the two beams meet and an epic struggle ensues with Cell slowly starting to overpower the exhausted and wounded young Saiyan. It seem over when suddenly Goku appears behind his soon offering encouragement and advise and with Vegeta surprise attacking Cell from behind this gives Gohan the opening he needs to release his restraints and hit Cell with everything! Que and amazing display of power as Cell is finally atomised and destroyed as Gohan LITERALLY walks through the beam pushing him into nothingness. It’s nothing short of badass and the perfect end to what many believe is the best saga Dragonball ever had!