Category: DBZ Sagas

Frieza Saga

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Super Saiyan Goku vs. Frieza

The Frieza Saga is the second major plot arc of the Dragon Ball Z anime. The manga volumes that it is made up of are “The Wrath of Freeza“, “Goku vs. Freeza“, and “The Super Saiyan“. In FUNimation Entertainment‘s naming conventions for the English language release of the anime, the Frieza Saga is broken up into three sub-sagas: the Namek Saga, the Captain Ginyu Saga, and the Frieza Saga. This article refers specifically to the events in the third sub-saga.

Nearly all of the Frieza Saga takes place on the planet Namek. The main plot is the long-awaited battle between Goku and Frieza, with Krillin, Gohan, Piccolo and Vegeta also taking part.

In Japan, this saga aired in 1990 and 1991. In the U.S., it aired in 1999. This is the first part of US season 3. This saga comprises the FUNimation Remastered Box Set, the second half of the FUNimation Dragon Ball Z Dragon Box Volume 2 Set and the first part of the Dragon Ball Z: Dragon Box Volume 3 Set.

Plot

Spoiler-Start

Spoiler Warning: Spoiler details may follow.

Fight against Frieza

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Dende summons Porunga, the Namekian Dragon

With the fate of Namek at stake, Grand Elder Guru sends the youngNamekian Dende to give the important password to Krillin and Gohan that will summon Porunga, the Namekian Dragon.

Meanwhile, Frieza arrives at Guru’s where he is met by some Namekian warriors, all of whom he kills except Nail, and fails at getting Guru to tell him the password. Just as Frieza is about to kill him as well, Nail warns Frieza that if Guru dies, the Namekian Dragon Balls will become useless. As a distraction to buy Dende more time, Nail takes Frieza to a field to do battle. Frieza is impressed that Nail’s maximum battle power is 42,000, but he surprises Nail by claiming that his battle power is 530,000, but he tells him he does not plan to use his full power against him. He then easily overtakes and brutally injures Nail with no problem but rushes off to his ship when he realizes that the fight is a ruse to stall him so he will not summon the Dragon Balls before Gohan and Krillin, leaving Nail for dead.

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Frieza prepares to transform

As Dende finally reaches Krillin with the important message, they take the Dragon Balls from a sleeping Vegeta and head away from Frieza’s spaceship. Dende uses the password to summon the Dragon, Porunga. Meanwhile, back on Frieza’s ship, Vegeta awakens, suddenly sensing Frieza’s approaching power level and to see that the Dragon has already been summoned.

Gohan, Krillin, and Dende set out to make their wish, which is to reviveYamcha, Tien Shinhan, Chiaotzu and Piccolo. The Dragon informs them that he can only wish back one person at a time. With King Kai‘s help, Piccolo communicates telepathically to Gohan and asks him to restore his life. His reasoning is that if he is resurrected,Kami will return to Earth and that will also bring back Earth’s Dragon Balls, in effect allowing for the others to also be revived with a wish. Piccolo asks for the second wish to teleport him to Namek, wanting to exact revenge on Frieza for killing his people. Gohan, Krillin, and Dende agree to this, and make the wishes.

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Piccolo takes on Frieza in his second form

Vegeta arrives at the scene after the second wish is made. Since the first two wishes had already been used to bring Piccolo back to life and then to Namek, Vegeta wants to save the last wish for eternal life for himself. Just as Dende asks the Dragon, Guru dies and the Dragon Balls turn to stone. Vegeta’s wish is not granted, but worse yet, Frieza has arrived and is extremely angry that the Dragon Balls have already been used. Vegeta fights his former boss, gloating that he has become a Super Saiyan, but as Frieza shockingly realizes they are somewhat evenly matched, Vegeta abruptly tells him to transform and reveal his true strength. Frieza amusingly wonders how Vegeta knows this, and Vegeta tells him Zarbon spilled it out before. Frieza transforms into his second form, one that is even stronger than before, claiming that his power level has risen over a million. Frieza tells them that while most transform to increase their battle power, he does it to decrease his power, because it is so enormous it’s hard to control himself. Vegeta, realizing that he underestimated Frieza’s strength, is shocked.

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Frieza fires an array of blasts

Meanwhile Piccolo, who was just teleported to Namek by a wish, senses the fighting and heads to the battlefield. Along the way he sees the dying Nail, who informs him on what has been happening. He also requests that Piccolo fuse with him to be more of a challenge to Frieza. At first, Piccolo is reluctant, but after Nail assures him that his personality will not change byfusing, Piccolo decides to accept, increasing his strength and speed tremendously. Back on the battlefield, Frieza’s new power level is said by him to be over one million. He also tells Vegeta about the destruction of the planet Vegeta and his father. Vegeta simply scoffs at this, saying that he surpassed his father when he was a child. After fully transforming, he impales Krillin with his horns, who was trying to protect Dende, and tosses him to the sea. Gohan tries to save him, but when Frieza stops him, an incredibly angry Gohan easily beats down Frieza and pummels him with many ki blasts. Despite Vegeta’s shocked reaction, the attack is not enough and Frieza recovers with little damage done. Luckily, Dende rescued Krillin out of the sea, telling Gohan that he is still alive. Angry that he was actually was hurt by the attack, Frieza then easily pounds Gohan, hurting him severely. Vegeta tries to attack when Frieza’s back is turned, but it is completely ineffective and Gohan is left almost dead. Gohan is saved when Krillin launches aDestructo Disc at Frieza and cuts off his tail. Dende then uses this time to heal Gohan as Vegeta watches. It was revealed that Dende was the one who plucked Krillin out of the sea and healed him. Krillin continues to distract Frieza using many evasive maneuvers, such as Solar Flare. Soon, Gohan is healed and now strongerthan ever due to his Saiyan genes.

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Gohan unleashes a relentless attack against Frieza

Just then, Piccolo arrives, claiming that he can beat Frieza. Vegeta scoffs at Piccolo, claiming that reviving him was a waste of a wish. However, this turns to shock for Vegeta that the Namekian who was easily killed by Nappa had now become powerful enough to challenge Frieza. The fight begins as Piccolo remains confident that he can take Frieza down. Thanks to his fusion with Nail, his power is slightly higher than that of Frieza’s. Through much of the battle, Piccolo has the upper hand, but Frieza transforms again into his third stage, earning yet another power increase. Piccolo, still confident that his speed is greater than Frieza’s, is proved wrong when Frieza grossly outstrips him in both power and speed, and subsequently launches finger blasts at him that are too fast for him to dodge at all. Soon, Piccolo is severely wounded. Gohan is furious at Piccolo’s defeat and explodes in a bout of rage, revealing his hidden powers as he once again takes on Frieza. Gohan then launches a Full Power Masenko that proves to be challenging for Frieza, until he deflects it back. Luckily, Piccolo saves Gohan in the nick of time with a blast. Frieza realizes that Gohan is a Saiyan and that he and Vegeta are constantly getting stronger. He then decides to transform into his final and strongest form, his original being. Vegeta comes up with the idea for Krillin to blast him to near death and for Dende to heal him afterwards, increasing his power enough to become a Super Saiyan. Although Krillin is highly reluctant at first, he blasts Vegeta in the stomach, piercing him through. Because of Saiyan heritage, recovery from a near-death experience causes Vegeta to increase in strength significantly. While Frieza transforms, Dende heals Piccolo and reluctantly heals Vegeta. Vegeta becomes confident that he has become a Super Saiyan.

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Frieza fires his Death Beam

Frieza sees how everyone was defying death using Dende’s healing, so he takes to the root of the problem. After transforming, he quickly kills Dende with a Death Beam, meaning the fighters will have no more chances to be healed. He tries to blast Gohan as well, but Vegeta quickly saves him. A confident Vegeta decides to commence battle with Frieza and his newfound power. To his horror, no matter what Vegeta does, he is no match and Frieza still has the upper hand throughout the whole battle. Vegeta actually sheds a tear in frustration when he realizes that the situation is hopeless. Because he drops all his defenses in desperation, Frieza batters him mercilessly to the brink of death. Goku, still in the Medical Machine, awakens and realizes what is taking place and quickly rushes off to save his fellow comrades. As Goku arrives, Vegeta swallows his pride and tells Frieza that Goku is the legendary Super Saiyan that will kill him. Frieza gets angry and blasts a hole using his Death Beam through Vegeta’s heart. Before his death, with tears in his eyes, he tells Goku the truth of Planet Vegeta’s destruction, how every Saiyan was forced to serve Frieza before most of them were killed, how Frieza took Vegeta from his father when he was a child and treathen to kill him unless he followed orders, how Frieza killed the king anyway along with Goku’s parents and the Saiyan Race. In his last breath, Vegeta asks Goku to take vengeance for all Saiyans, and Goku then buries Vegeta. Fueled with rage at Vegeta’s death, Goku honors Vegeta’s request to take vengence for Planet Vegeta and the entire Saiyan race, and begins to fight Frieza.

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Vegeta meets his end at the hands of Frieza

The battle between Frieza and Goku begins. They seem perfectly equivalent for some time in terms of strength and speed. During the match, Goku seems to have more clever ideas on how to fight and tricks Frieza several times. Goku used to his advantage the fact that Frieza needs to see his opponent and is unable to feel their energy. While Goku was under water during one attack, he used the Kamehameha wave as torpedoes to trick Frieza. Frieza then revealed that he was only using about a fraction of his power, and that he’ll power up to 50%, which turns the tables in Frieza’s favor. At Kaio-ken x10, Goku was being brutally beaten. Frieza claimed he allowed Goku to think he had a chance, and even offered for Goku to replace Ginyu as his bodyguard. Goku refused, but after one rigorous attack after another, Piccolo, Gohan, Krillin, and even King Kai began to see the situation as hopeless. Goku tries to raise his power using the Kaio-ken x20 and shoot a Kamehameha wave at Frieza, but it only leaves Frieza’s hands burnt, while the attack left Goku completely drained. Having no choice, Goku prepares the Spirit Bomb in desperation. Piccolo, Gohan, and Krillin step in to try and hold off Frieza while Goku gathers energy for the attack. Once the Spirit Bomb is finally finished and unleashed upon Frieza, it does significant damage to him, causing the Z Warriors to believe Frieza was finished off. Krillin and Gohan take Goku and Piccolo away from the damage. A few minutes of celebration was soon turned into a horrid sight once Krillin saw Frieza furiously standing on the top of a rock.

Final battle

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Goku endures Frieza’s wrath

Enraged and surprised that Goku had such ability for a Saiyan, Frieza lashes out against the other warriors. He first decides to kill Goku. As he fires a Death Beam at the exhausted Saiyan, Piccolo jumps in the way of the blast and saves his life (however, in the manga, Frieza simply blasts at Piccolo with a Death Beam). Though it does not kill him, Piccolo is hurt very badly and falls to the ground unconscious, enraging Goku. Next, Frieza kills Krillin by making his whole body explode in the air. Seeing his best friend killed causes Goku to erupt with even more rage. In a display of gathering energy, the angry Goku pulls out his strongest emotions ever before reached. His hair turns more spikier and golden, and his eyes turn green. He is now a Super Saiyan, with his power tremendously increased. He yells at Gohan to take Piccolo and retrieve Bulma and take them to the ship that he traveled in and use it to head back to Earth.

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Ginyu and Bulma share a moment on Namek, after Ginyu accidentally exchanges bodies with a frog

Super Saiyan Goku and Frieza begin to fight, and Goku toys with him and starts treating him as if he was a rag doll. With no other options, Frieza decides that if he cannot beat Goku, then he’ll blow up Namek instead. He throws a ball of energy towards the planet’s core, hoping to destroy the planet. However, Frieza realizes he held back too much power, and the planet only begins to crumble. Frieza then claims it will explode in five minutes and reveals that he can breathe in space. As the battle rages on, Frieza decides to use 100% of his full power. Though this significantly increases his power level and allows Frieza to gain the upper-hand on Goku for a time, the damaged incurred in this previous levels causes him to lose that power radically after a short bout. Goku realizes this, and uses it to his advantage to take down the mighty tyrant.

Back on Earth, Kami and Mr. Popo have gathered all of the Dragon Balls and with King Kai’s help they devise a plan to bring back all who were killed by Frieza.

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Goku transforms into a Super Saiyan after witnessing Krillin’s murder at the hands of Frieza

Since the wish brings back Guru, who was killed by the grief of Frieza’s killings, King Kai telepathically asks him to wish all of those on Namek, except for Frieza, back to Earth with the Namek Dragon, which still has one wish remaining. However, Goku intercepts their telepathic communication and requests that he be left behind on Namek as well and King Kai reluctantly gives in. King Kai notices that Super Saiyan Goku is no longer the Goku they used to know, he is now only acting on blind Saiyan instincts. Vegeta, who was also resurrected as well by the wish, is surprised to see that Goku had become a Super Saiyan just before he is teleported off of Namek.

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Frieza is sliced by his own attack

With the entire planet empty except Goku and Frieza, they take the battle around the crumbling planet. Soon, Goku notices that Frieza is losing stamina too much to be a match for him. He then stops that fight and begins to leave, telling Frieza to train and come back for a rematch. Enraged, Frieza decides to release a Death Saucer that he can direct to attack Goku with. Goku easily outmaneuvers this attack. Frieza realizes that one is not enough and releases another Death Disc, attempting to outsmart Goku. Goku maneuvers at the last minute, blasting into the ground creating a blinding blanket of dust. Frieza is unable to detect energy without physically seeing it, so one makes its way to cut Frieza in half. Goku tries to warn him, but he is chopped into four pieces by the disc. As he is dying, Frieza begs Goku not to leave him like this. Goku cannot stand seeing a life, even one as evil as Frieza’s, suffer in such a painful and humiliating manner. Eventually Goku takes pity on the pathetic tyrant, and gave him some of his energy. Frieza then explains that there is no way Goku is going to live, as the planet is about to explode and his ship is in no working condition. As Goku leaves, Frieza makes one final attempt to kill him, using the energy given to him to throw a wave of energy at him. Goku pushes the blast back at Frieza with his own energy blast and flies away.

Knowing he will not reach his own ship in time, Goku searches for Frieza’s and finds it in a crater. Goku, frustrated and desperate, realizes that he will not make it off of Namek as he watches its wreckage plummet into a lava filled chasm. Seconds later, Goku screams in agony and rage as planet Namek disappears from the Universe in a colossal, blinding explosion.

Aftermath

On Earth, Dende heals Piccolo and realizes that he has merged with Nail. The Namekian Dragon Balls follows Guru to Earth, evading the explosion. As Guru is dying once more, he transfers his role as Senior Elder to Moori, a trusted Namekian village leader, so the Dragon Balls will not die with him. Dende also informs Gohan that the Namekian Dragon Balls can also resurrect a deceased person more than once. This is good news since it would mean that they could resurrect Krillin, Chiaotzu, and Goku, who had been killed before. Everyone is thrilled until King Kai reminds them that Krillin and Goku can not be resurrected because the planet they died on (Namek) was destroyed, and if wished back, they would only appear in empty space and immediately die again from lack of air. However, Vegeta suggests that they use a wish to transport their remains to Earth first.

130 days later, the Namekian Dragon Balls are able to be used again. They are first used to transport Goku and Krillin’s remains to Earth. However, Porunga reveals that he is unable to transport Goku’s remains because he is not actually dead. After the second wish is used to bring back Krillin, the final wish is made to bring Goku to Earth, Porunga then informs them that Goku refuses to come back and will return later by himself. This leaves our heroes greatly perplexed, but arrive at the conclusion that Goku is coming home either way, and they accept his absence. All, that is, except Vegeta, who leaves in a space ship to search the universe for Goku and the key to becoming a Super Saiyan. With one wish remaining, it is used to resurrect Yamcha.

Another 130 days (one Namek year) later, the Namekian Dragon Balls are ready again. The first two wishes are to resurrect Tien and Chiaotzu, and the final wish is to transport the Nameks to a New Namek that would have similar living conditions to their old planet Namek. Gohan and Dende share a tearful goodbye as the Nameks disappear to their new home, and life on Earth returns to normal… for now.

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Captain Ginyu Saga

Captain Ginyu Saga is the name for the middle third of the much larger Frieza Saga in Dragon Ball Z, according to FUNimation dub‘s naming conventions for the English language anime, making it the third saga of the Dragon Ball Z series. The manga volumes that it is made up of are “The Ginyu Force” and “Goku vs. Ginyu“. All major action in the Captain Ginyu Saga takes place on the planetNamek. The saga deals mainly with the fight between Goku, Gohan and Krillinagainst Captain Ginyu.

Cartoon Network stated that Dragon Ball Z would be completely redone at the original airings of these episodes, as FUNimation started using new voice actors since episode 54.

This saga immediately follows the Namek Saga and is followed by the Frieza Saga. This saga aired in Japan in 1990. It also aired in U.S. in 1998, as the second part of US season two. This saga comprises the second half of the FUNimation Remastered Season Two Box Set and is a part of the FUNimation Dragon Ball Z: Dragon Box Volume 2 Set (however the saga is listed as a part of the Frieza Saga).

Plot
Spoiler-Start

Spoiler Warning: Spoiler details may follow.

Goku vs. Burter and Jeice

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Captain Ginyu wants to face Goku after Jeice alerts him of the threat

Burter and Jeice continue their losing battle against Goku. After dodging all their attacks with little to no effort, he is able to sneak up behind Burter, who prides himself to be the fastest being in the universe. Outraged, Burter charges at Goku with an all-out offensive, with Jeice soon joining in. Goku easily dodges their hits, and with little effort, knocks Burter out (but not killing him), leaving Jeice the only member left standing. A merciful Goku tells Jeice that he should choose to leave the planet rather than stay there (as he had been doing for much of the previous Namek Saga). Jeice decides to take the offer and leaves the battle field, leaving his comrades behind. Vegeta does not hesitate to kill Burter (by snapping his neck), then killingRecoome (blasting him to bits). Vegeta tells Goku that he is too soft to actually be a Super Saiyan (as he said in the Namek Saga).

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Ginyu performing the Body Change technique

Meanwhile, Jeice arrives to Frieza’s spaceship (Frieza is out to find the password for the Dragon Balls). He tells Captain Ginyu of all their loss. Captain Ginyu, angered over the death of his men, flies to the battlefield to exact revenge (with Jeice coming along).

Back at the battlefield, Goku, Vegeta, Gohan, and Krillin discuss what they are to do next. Although Vegeta is concerned that Frieza had made his wish, Krillin points out that Frieza has not made his wish yet, otherwise the sky would have turned black when the Dragon would have been summoned. They then sense that Frieza’s ki is approaching Grand Elder Guru‘s place, which confirms Goku’s suspicions that they do need a password to summon the Namekian Dragon. They have little time to act as Captain Ginyu and Jeice arrive. Goku tells Gohan and Krillin to leave, get the Dragon Radar from Bulma, then find the Dragon Balls. Captain Ginyu then sees that Goku’s power reading is 5,000. He knows that Goku is hiding his true power (which he believes to be somewhere around 60,000; 90,000 to be precise).

The battle against the Ginyu Force soon commences. Goku and Vegeta vs. Captain Ginyu and Jeice. Vegeta, however, flees the scene, leaving Goku to fend for himself.

Goku vs. Captain Ginyu

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After changing bodies with Goku, Ginyu proceeds to surprise and attack Gohan and Krillin simultaneously

Captain Ginyu attacks an unguarded Goku, and elbows straight in the face. The fight then commences, with both equally matched. They are also hiding the bulk of their power (which Captain Ginyu wants to expose out of Goku, but Goku is reluctant to do so).

Meanwhile, Vegeta flies over to Frieza’s spaceship first and kills all of Frieza’s men that were guarding the ship, but fails to find the Dragon Balls, which Frieza’s men have hidden in a hole they dug earlier. As he cleans himself up, he decides to wait for someone to uncover the Balls, kill them and then make his wish.

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Captain Ginyu’s failed attempt to change bodies with Vegeta condemns him to the body of a Namekian Frog

Back at the battlefield, Captain Ginyu and Goku still seem evenly matched. This is until Jeice fires an attack at Goku. Goku easily dodges, but leaves himself open to be caught by Captain Ginyu in a full-nelson. Jeice urges Captain Ginyu to break his back, but Captain Ginyu lets Goku go. Captain Ginyu then threatens Jeice with death if he interferes again.

Captain Ginyu then tells Goku that he wants to see his perfect power. Goku decides to, and does the Kaio-ken. Captain Ginyu is shocked to find that Goku’s power is 180,000 (Captain Ginyu’s maximum is 120,000). Captain Ginyu then questions whether Goku can truly be a Super Saiyan.

Meanwhile, Frieza finally arrives to Guru’s place, with Nail waiting for him. Nail refuses to talk about the password. All of a sudden, three Namekian warriors arrive to fight Frieza. Nail tells them to leave, but they refuse. Frieza then kills all three of them with ease.

Nail then fights Frieza in a remote location. It is obvious Nail has no chance against Frieza, but must stall time for Dende to deliver the password to the others.

Goku is Ginyu and Ginyu is Goku

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Nail struggles against Frieza

Knowing now that he cannot defeat Goku himself, Captain Ginyu resorts to trickery. Ginyu immediately drives his fist into his chest, severely wounding himself. A confused Goku can only watch as Ginyu suddenly shoots a beam from his mouth. Upon impact the beam sends Goku’s consciousness into Ginyu’s body and vice-versa. Captain Ginyu has used his Body Change, switching bodies with Goku. Ginyu and Jeice leave for Frieza’s ship while in the process leaving Goku to die in Ginyu’s wounded body.

Krillin and Gohan arrive at Frieza’s spaceship (much to Vegeta’s chagrin, who cannot bring himself to kill them now) to locate the Dragon Balls and summon the Namekian Dragon Porunga, but nothing happens. Gohan and Krillin sense someone coming and hide. Jeice and Captain Ginyu (in Goku’s body) arrive at Frieza’s ship and wonder who dug up the Dragon Balls. Krillin mistakenly goes off to greet Goku, and he soon realizes this is not the Goku he knows. Goku, in Ginyu’s body, then arrives and implores Krillin and Gohan to fight back. Krillin and Gohan then face-off against Captain Ginyu, while Vegeta witnesses the battle. After a brief fighting, Captain Ginyu states that his fighting power should be around 180,000, which stuns Krillin and Gohan as he begins powering up.

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Vegeta gives Krillin and Gohan battle armor

After reaching Full Power, Captain Ginyu asks Jeice what his exact power level is, to which Jeice responds as 23,000, to which surprises Captain Ginyu (as he thought it would be around 180,000). Goku then states that Ginyu does not know how to utilize the power in Goku’s body and that he can not focus by using his mind. After seeing their opportunity, Gohan and Krillin are able to lay several effective blows to Captain Ginyu, which causes Captain Ginyu to call in his backup partner, Jeice. As Jeice prepares to enter the battle, he is confronted by Vegeta, who then challenges him. Meanwhile, Nail is having difficulties of his own as he challenges Frieza, who leaves him on the brink of death. Back on the battlefield, Goku, Krillin and Gohan then challenge Captain Ginyu as a team, who manage to outclass him a little. Meanwhile, Vegeta and Jeice are battling it out in Frieza’s spaceship, until Jeice’s anger gets the best of him, in which he burst out of Frieza’s spaceship. Within a matter of seconds, Jeice is destroyed by Vegeta with a large energy blast. After beating Jeice, Vegeta then states that he is the legendary Super Saiyan, which Captain Ginyu refuses to believe, as he states that Vegeta is not a Super Saiyan. Vegeta, angry at this comment, then attacks Ginyu in an all-out assault, and with a series of powerful blows is able to bring the Captain down with his Saiyan strength. As Vegeta prepares to destroy Ginyu, Ginyu then plays his trump card as he prepares to switch bodies with Vegeta. After realizing what Ginyu is planning, Goku sees his opportunity and is able, in the nick of time, to finally get back in his body, although he is left severely wounded as a result of Vegeta’s previous beating.

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Goku is placed in a rejuvenation chamber to in order to heal for the battle against Frieza

After returning to their initial bodies, Ginyu prepares to make one last attempt to switch bodies once again with Vegeta and he once again uses hisBody Change technique. Vegeta then rushes full speed to him and at the last minute, teleports in front of him, tricking Captain Ginyu, and lands a series of powerful attacks to Captain Ginyu, wounding him greatly. Attack after attack, Vegeta has the upper hand, until Captain Ginyu finally sees a chance to switch bodies with him. Ginyu almost succeeds although Goku sees a Namekian Frog, catches it and throws it into the air, directly in the path of the beam of light. After a few minutes, the result leaves Captain Ginyu in the body of the frog. Vegeta attempts to crush the frog, but chooses not to as he does not want to dirty his shoes (and since Ginyu’s fate is now much worse than death itself). Vegeta then states that now would be a good time to destroy Goku’s team, but Goku however, sees through Vegeta’s farce, knowing that he will need their help to defeat Frieza and make his wish with the Dragon Balls. Vegeta takes Goku inside Frieza’s spaceship and places him in a Rejuvenation Tank while providing Gohan and Krillin with Saiyan armor. Krillin then decides to take a rather risky trip to see Guru and get the password from him.

The Namek Saga

The Namek Saga is the second saga from the Dragon Ball Z series. The manga volumes that it is made up of are “Dragon Ball In Space” and “Battlefield Namek“. Its name is derived from the story arc revolving around the homeworld of the creatures on Earth believed to be demons, such as Kami and King Piccolo. It covers the trip and arrival to planet Namek, a fictional planet from the series, of Bulma, Krillin, and Gohan. The saga also covers the battles the Earth warriors and Vegeta face against Zarbon and Dodoria, Frieza‘s top two henchmen. Nearing the end of the chapter, it covers the arrival of Goku on Namek to aid his allies and the beginning of the fight against the Ginyu Force.

The Namek Saga comes after the Vegeta Saga and precedes the Captain Ginyu Saga. This saga aired in Japan in 1990. It is the first part of U.S. season 2. This saga comprises the first half of the FUNimation Season Two Remastered Box Set, except for the first 4 episodes which were included in the Season One Box Set, the last 6 episodes of the first Dragon Ball Z Dragon Box, and the first part of the Dragon Box FUNimation Dragon Ball Z Dragon Box Z Volume 2 Set.

Plot

Spoiler-Start

Spoiler Warning: Spoiler details may follow.

Journey to Namek

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Frieza, Zarbon, and Dodoria are already on Namek in search of the Dragon Balls

After the epic battle with the Saiyans, and as Krillin limps back towardsGoku, a ship arrives with Chi-Chi, Master Roshi, and Korin. Chi-Chi, unconcerned about the fate of her paralyzed husband, only cares aboutGohan, who, in comparison, is fairing much better. Goku is carried into the ship, and the group somberly heads off to gather the bodies of those who died. After doing so, Krillin comments on it being possible to revive everyone with another set of Dragon Balls on the planet Namek, Piccolo’s home planet (Krillin overheard the conversation between Vegeta and Nappa about the existence of the Namekian Dragon Balls). However, King Kai informs them a cataclysm had occurred there long ago and now there were only about 100Namekians left in total.

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Planet Namek

Bulma determines that it is possible to use engines from one of the Saiyan spacecrafts to travel to the planet, but in an attempt to bring the space pod to them, she blew it up. It seemed as if all hope was lost, until Mr. Popoappeared and said Kami had told him of a ship that might be able to take them to Namek (it was used by Kami long ago to escape the cataclysm on Namek). Mr. Popo and Bulma go and check it out, and they realize that it is, indeed, capable of the trip. They make their way back to the hospital and find that Krillin and Gohan are willing to go. So after a short trip to Kame Island, Bulma, Gohan, and Krillin set off to a trip to Namek. They suffer some delays on their way to Namek, including finding an invisible spaceship full of orphaned kids, and getting stuck on a fake Namek.

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Vegeta defeats Cui

Vegeta, after being seriously injured in his fight with Goku and the others, returns to Planet Frieza 79 to regenerate himself using a special Medical Machine. After fully recovering, Vegeta feels stronger than ever, as Saiyans have the unusual ability to reach higher power levels after healing from near death experiences. His self proclaimed rival, Cui, informs Vegeta that his former boss, Frieza, was initially angry at Vegeta going to Earth and violating orders but decided to forgive him when he overheard the conversation between he and Nappa about the Dragon Balls on Namek (scouters also served as a transmitter, which Frieza used to overhear their conversation). Furious about the consequences of Frieza being immortal, Vegeta rushes to Namek himself, now openly declaring himself an enemy of Frieza.

War on Namek

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Frieza searches Namekian villages alongside his top two henchmen, Zarbon and Dodoria

Soon, Frieza, Vegeta and our heroes all arrive on Namek with the seven Dragon Balls on their minds. There is one Dragon Ball per Namek village, each protected by the village elder. Obtaining them proves all too easy for Frieza who, with the help of his top two henchmen,  Dodoria and Zarbon, bags four balls. As they go from one Namekian village to another, Zarbon and Dodoria butcher the Namekians until they locate the Dragon Ball. Cui has also followed Vegeta to Namek and searches the planet for his rival. Cui, still thinking that Vegeta’s power rivaled his own, (about 18,000) followed Vegeta to Namek and tries to wipe out Vegeta on orders from Frieza. However, Vegeta shows Cui his true strength before eliminating him. Vegeta’s power, which had risen from 18,000 to 24,000 because of his near-death confrontation on Earth, is noted by Zarbon and Dodoria, who were following his battle with their scouters.

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Dodoria performing a mouth-beam attack on Gohan and Krillin during pursuit

Back on Earth, Yajirobe visits Goku in the hospital and gives him a Senzu Bean, instantly healing Goku and restoring his strength. Goku immediately flies off, surprising all the doctors and nurses with his speedy recovery. Goku then goes to the Capsule Corporation to find that Dr. Brief has built aspecial ship from parts of the Saiyan spaceship he traveled in when he was a baby. He is also able to train at various levels of gravity from twenty to one hundred times Earth’s gravity using an anti-gravity machine that Dr. Brief built at Goku’s request. Knowing that his friends are in danger and wasting no more time, Goku then takes off for Namek to set things straight and hoping to arrive in six days.

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Vegeta attacks a Namekian village in order to obtain a Dragon Ball

During this time, Frieza locates another Namekian village in order to obtain its Dragon Ball. Gohan and Krillin watch with horror as the entire village is slaughtered easily by Zarbon and Dodoria, except for one remaining Namekian child, Dende. After all the Namekian warriors, elderly, and children have been eliminated, Moori, the village leader, manages to destroy all the scouters used by Frieza and his crew, knowing that they cannot locate Namekian battle powers anymore and will not be able to track down the remaining Dragon Balls. However, after Moori is also executed and as Dodoria is about to kill Dende, Gohan interrupts in a fit of rage. He kicks Dodoria into a wall and runs away with the Namekian child and Krillin.

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Gohan and Krillin bring Dende to their hiding spot, where Bulma is waiting for them

Dodoria is ordered to pursue the fleeing heroes. After blasting the entire area, Dodoria assumes he has exterminated them and turns back in order to return to Frieza. However, As Dodoria is trying find the Namekian village, he is confronted by Vegeta, whose increased strength allows him to easily hold a grip on Dodoria. In a desperate attempt to save his life, Dodoria tells Vegeta about the Saiyan planet and its destruction in exchange for Vegeta’s promise to spare his life. Vegeta releases Dodoria from his grip, and then Dodoria explains the Frieza lied about Planet Vegeta being destroyed. He tells that the Saiyans were getting stronger and Frieza thought it was only a matter of time before they could stand up to him, so he decided to destroy planet Vegeta and the Saiyan race. Before that, he sent Vegeta to another planet, seeing that Vegeta was powerful and still useful. Vegeta then scoffs, saying that he never cared about his family or Planet Vegeta and executes Dodoria ruthlessly. Vegeta is overjoyed at recent events; he knows that without scouters, Frieza will have a much harder time finding Namekian villages. Vegeta then rushes to a Namekian village with his newly acquired skills from Earth, the ability to detect ki and the ability to hide his power as he sees fit. After Vegeta locates a village that had not yet been raided by Frieza and his henchmen, he is able to obtain a Dragon Ball after slaughtering all of the villagers himself. After clever thinking, Vegeta throws the Dragon Ball underwater, intending to come back for it later. As long as Frieza is unable to obtain one Dragon Ball, he will not be able to summon the Dragon. Meanwhile, Gohan and Krillin bring the young Namekian Dende to their hiding spot. Bulma awaits them in a Capsule House and is surprised to see Dende. After a meal, Dende explains to them that there is a Dragon Ball kept safe with Guru (the Great Elder). However, Guru is far away and it would take quite some time to get to him, even if they flew there. Krillin takes a big chance and goes alone with Dende in order to retrieve the Dragon Ball from Guru. This leaves Gohan to temporarily fend for himself. Meanwhile, Vegeta suspects that the Earthlings are also on Namek because Dodoria had told him about them prior to being slain.

Vegeta vs. Zarbon

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Zarbon comes across Vegeta when searching for the remaining Dragon Balls

Zarbon stands waiting for Dodoria’s return and remarks that Dodoria should have been back. Dodoria has not returned and Frieza becomes impatient. He demands that Zarbon and Appule search planet Namek for more villages. He has grown impatient and wants the Dragon Balls so his wish for immortality can come true. Zarbon is sent to locate another Namekian village. Meanwhile, Piccolo, Yamcha, Tien Shinhan, and Chiaotzu have all arrived at King Kai’s planet for special training; supposedly the same training that Goku received prior. They telepathically communicate with Goku to tell him of their arrival and Goku tells them that the situation is worse as there’s even more evil warriors on Namek, more powerful than Vegeta. King Kai suspects that something is wrong and checks to see that Frieza is truly on Namek. He then proceeds to warn Goku to never go near Frieza, fearfully telling him that Frieza is the most powerful entity in their quadrant of the universe.

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Zarbon transforms into a reptilian beast and pummels Vegeta

Vegeta detects a powerful force which is revealed to be Zarbon. Vegeta does not fare as well when he comes face to face with Frieza’s right-hand man and his most powerful henchman, Zarbon. After Zarbon and Vegeta wage war for a few minutes with Vegeta once again easily dominating his opponent, Zarbon warns Vegeta of his ability to transform. Vegeta welcomes this challenge, not fully comprehending its consequences. Zarbon transforms into a hideous reptilian beast, completely surprising Vegeta and showing off his true power. He then proceeds to tear into Vegeta, easily beating him to a pulp with a combination of roundhouse kicks, headbutts, and a devastating piledriver, leaving him for dead. After Vegeta is tossed into the water, Zarbon decides to return to the ship in order to report to Frieza.

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After defeating Vegeta in a fierce battle, Zarbon takes him to a rejuvenation chamber in order to heal him for questioning

Once Zarbon returns to Frieza with his news of victory, he is given orders to bring Vegeta back in order to rejuvenate his energy for interrogation. Apparently, Vegeta had hidden a Dragon Ball, and Frieza needed to squeeze the information out of him. Zarbon locates Vegeta’s battered body and brings him to Frieza’s spaceship. There, he orders Appule to watch over the injured prince. However, once Vegeta is healed, he blasts through the Medical Machine tank, killing Appule in the process. He also blasts a hole through Frieza’s quarters in his spaceship, managing to toss out the Dragon Balls and fooling Frieza and Zarbon into thinking he escaped while he is actually hiding inside the spaceship. When Zarbon attempts to search for Vegeta, he takes the opportunity to fly off. An extremely angry Frieza orders Zarbon to retrieve Vegeta immediately in an hour or face severe punishment.

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Yamcha, Piccolo, Chiaotzu and Tien, shortly after arriving on King Kai’s planet

Meanwhile, Krillin is taken to Guru, the eldest and leader of the Namekians, who is very ill. It is revealed that if Guru dies, then the Namekian Dragon Balls will be gone forever, therefore threatening the revival of Yamcha, Piccolo, Tien, and Chiaotzu. To make things worse, Guru states that he does not have much time to live. When Guru puts his hands on Krillin, he realizes that he is good at heart and gives him a Dragon Ball to prevent Frieza and Vegeta from getting their wish, at the very least. He also summons energy and awakens the hidden potential within Krillin, increasing his battle power significantly. Bulma notices that the Dragon Radar is picking up a solitary Dragon Ball in an isolated place (where Vegeta hid it earlier underwater), and has Gohan go retrieve it. However, while returning back to Bulma, Krillin’s huge power unfortunately attracts Vegeta, who also notices that Krillin has a Dragon Ball. Zarbon also sees Vegeta in the distance and follows him.

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Frieza in his ship, waiting for his underlings to retrieve the Dragon Balls

Vegeta arrives as Krillin and Bulma become frightened. Zarbon arrives, demanding that they hand over the Dragon Ball. Bulma quickly finds herself attracted to Zarbon’s appearance. However, Zarbon and Vegeta collide in a fearsome clash and Zarbon is forced to transform once again in order to take down Vegeta, leaving Krillin and Bulma to watch in horror. Since a Saiyan’s power grows after every brutally grueling near-death battle, Vegeta is able to execute Zarbon in his transformed state by ramming his fist clean through Zarbon’s stomach, and blasting him into the sky, sending him to a watery grave in the Namekian sea. He then takes Krillin’s Dragon Ball and spares the two in his moment of joy, believing that he now has all 7 Dragon Balls. As he goes to pick up the Dragon Ball in the lake, he runs into Gohan, who happened to fool Vegeta and come with the Dragon Ball still in his possession. As Gohan returns, Krillin suggests that they move to a safer location and lower their power in order to avoid being detected by Vegeta.

The Ginyu Force

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Gohan’s hidden potential is unlocked by Guru

An extremely angry Vegeta, learning that the Dragon Ball was taken from its hiding spot by Gohan, rushes to the old meeting ground only to discover nobody is there. He then gathers all 6 Dragon Balls and guards them, while also trying to pick up any trace of Gohan’s and Krillin’s ki. He knows he can not face Frieza just yet, since Frieza’s power is enormously higher. The best he can do is wait it out until he is able to detect Krillin and Gohan in order to acquire their Dragon Ball.

Upon learning of Zarbon’s demise, and realizing that Vegeta was more than he bargained for, Frieza decides to summon the elite mercenary fighting team known as the Ginyu Force to find the Dragon Balls and take care of anyone or anything that gets in their way. The Ginyu Force is summoned and they depart for planet Namek.

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Bulma tries to hold onto a Dragon Ball while on Namek

Meanwhile on Namek, Krillin takes Gohan to have his hidden powers unlocked by Guru, knowing that his huge potential would help even fend off Vegeta. On the way, they are detected and confronted by Vegeta who tells them that his wish of immortality is the only way of defeating the Ginyu Force, 5 enormous evil ki that have just arrived on the planet. Our heroes reluctantly agree after Nail tells them that 3 wishes can be granted by the Dragon Balls, allowing everyone to have their wish granted. Ultimately, though, it is too late as the Ginyu Force arrives just in time for the Dragon Balls. They retrieve the seven balls and Captain Ginyu flies off to give them to Frieza, leaving the rest of the team to deal with Vegeta, Krillin, and Gohan.

First up is Guldo who has the ability to freeze time by holding his breath. Although Vegeta warns Krillin and Gohan beforehand about his abilities, they still become backed in a corner and Vegeta is forced to step in and kill Guldo by beheading him, and blowing him up. Meanwhile, Ginyu delivers the Dragon Balls to Frieza, who makes his wish for immortality but to no avail. Frieza suddenly remembers a Namekian elder who willingly gave up his Dragon Ball but told him that he would never be able to make his wish, and realizes the elder was right all along. Frieza senses Guru and Dende from afar and departs to find and interrogate them on how to use the Dragon Balls, while Ginyu remains behind to guard the Dragon Balls and bring Frieza’s men up to shape.

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Guldo stops time with his special ability

Next is the hulking brute, Recoome. Vegeta decides to fight him alone. Throughout this battle, Vegeta has his ups and downs, sometimes even surprising Recoome. During most of the battle though, Recoome has the upper hand. Vegeta wastes more energy and stamina than actually doing damage, and is beaten severely. Although Vegeta gives everything he has, Recoome is left nearly unscathed, although his armor is burnt off. Krillin and Gohan save Vegeta from Recoome’s Eraser Gun, but Recoome easily confronts Krillin and kicks him hard, crippling him. Gohan, furious because Krillin has been hurt, begins to fight Recoome head on. He puts up more of a battle but does not do any damage to Recoome. When Recoome jumps in the air breaking Gohan’s neck and spine, he is left on the brink of death. A Capsule Corporation spaceship is seen as it lands on the planet. The warriors are unaware of who has arrived.

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Battle Damaged Recoome

Goku finally arrives on Namek and gives Gohan, Krillin, and Vegeta the remaining Senzu Beans. Gohan and Krillin are shocked when Goku helps their once-enemy Vegeta. Goku then effortlessly defeats the powerful Recoome in one blow to the midsection, thanks to his training in the ship. Gohan, Krillin, and Vegeta all marvel at Goku’s extreme power. Burter andJeice get cocky and believe it was a lucky shot, as the scouter registered Goku as being at a battle power of just 5,000. However, when Burter and Jeice attack Goku, he does not seem at all concerned with the two deadly members of the Ginyu Force.

The remaining members of the Ginyu Force are stunned at Goku’s abilities, while Vegeta is the only one that senses something has changed in Goku and wonders if Goku has become a legendary Super Saiyan.

The Vegeta Saga

The Vegeta Saga, known as the Saiyan Saga in the Japanese and Ocean dubs, is the first saga from the Dragon Ball Z series. It follows the Piccolo Jr. Saga and precedes the Namek Saga. This saga aired in Japan in 1989 and 1990. It comprises US season 1. It was later included in the FUNimation Season One Remastered Box Set, which also includes the first 4 episodes of the Namek Saga and on the FUNimation Dragon Ball Z: Dragon Box Volume 1 Set.

Its main plot concerns the arrival of three humanoid aliens, known as “Saiyans“, toEarth, looking for Goku first, and the Dragon Balls later. The most powerful of these Saiyans is Vegeta. The saga covers the arrival of the first of these Saiyans, Raditz, and his fight against his brother Goku and Piccolo. It then covers the subsequent training and preparation for the arrival of the other two Saiyans, Nappa and Vegeta. Finally, it covers the fight between the Z Fighters and the two powerful Saiyans, culminating in the climactic battle between Goku and Vegeta. On the section which details the climactic battles of each saga, Daizenshuu 2 splits the Saiyan Saga into two halves: the Raditz Saga (which ends with the fight against Raditz) and the Vegeta Saga (which ends with the fight with Vegeta).

Plot

Spoiler-Start

Spoiler Warning: Spoiler details may follow.

Arrival of Raditz

  • Episodes 1-4
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Raditz, Vegeta and Nappa

The Vegeta Saga begins five years after the events in the Piccolo Jr. Saga depicted at the end of Dragon Ball. A reunion at the Kame House reunites Goku with his old master, Master Roshi, and his friends Krillin and Bulma, who all have not seen each other in five years. Goku surprises everyone by bringing along his four-year old son,Gohan. Unfortunately, the reunion is interrupted by the arrival of a mysterious being, who identifies himself as a Saiyan by the name of Raditz. Raditz identifies Goku as Kakarot and berates him for not completing his “mission”. Further complicating matters, Raditz also claims that Goku is from the same Saiyan race as he is, and that he and Goku are in fact brothers. Goku and Krillin understandably think that Raditz is nuts, however Roshi reveals that there may be some truth to the Saiyan’s words. In a major turning point in the series, Master Roshi reveals that Goku’s adopted grandfather, Grandpa Gohan, found a strange space capsule in the woods containing baby Goku. As a baby, Goku was violent and ill-tempered, though one day he fell down a ravine and suffered severe head trauma, which in turn changed Goku into the happy, amicable child that everyone came to know and love.

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Grandpa Gohan finds Goku’s capsule

This new revelation shocks Goku, who refuses to believe its validity. Raditz then goes on to state that Goku’s original purpose was to destroy all life on Earth, which he should have done in a matter of years after his arrival. Raditz also reveals that the Saiyans’ original home planet, Planet Vegeta, was destroyed by an asteroid some twenty years earlier, and that there are only four Saiyans left, including Goku. Finally, Raditz mentions that he needs his brother’s help in destroying all life on a distant planet. Goku refuses, which prompts Raditz to notice Gohan (who still retains his Saiyan tail), which leads Raditz to threaten the fate of the child. Goku tries to attack, but is quickly stopped by Raditz, who then kidnaps Gohan, and gives Goku an ultimatum; Raditz will kill Gohan unless Goku kills one hundred humans within the next twenty-four hours. With that, Raditz flies off.

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Raditz telling the story of Planet Vegeta’s destruction

Goku is clearly distressed at his situation, and vows to rescue his son; Krillin and Master Roshi offer to help him fight. Before they can depart, however, he is confronted by his nemesis Piccolo. Piccolo encountered Raditz after Raditz had first arrived on Earth, and was terrified by his raw power. Aware that they now have a common enemy, Piccolo suggests that he and Goku join forces to confront Raditz, which Goku hesitatingly agrees to. Bulma offers up her Dragon Radar so that Piccolo and Goku can track the 4-star Dragon Ball in Gohan’s hat, thus finding his location.

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Raditz blocks Goku’s Kamehameha

Meanwhile, Raditz arrives at his spaceship and locks the crying Gohan inside. Through the use of his scouter Raditz discovers that two fighters are approaching; as they get closer it is revealed that they are Piccolo and Goku. The duo face-off against Raditz, however they find that there is little they can do against the more powerful Saiyan. Raditz gains the upperhand and soars into the air, firing dual ki blasts out of his hands at Goku and Piccolo. Goku is able to dodge his, however Piccolo loses his arm.

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Gohan attacks Raditz

Piccolo, unhindered, reveals that he has been holding back a new technique that he designed to kill Goku, however he decides that he will use it against Raditz. In order to give Piccolo time to charge the attack, Goku distracts Raditz with his own Kamehameha. Raditz is astonished that the two fighters can concentrate their power into single attacks, however he manages to neutralize the Kamehameha with ease, and then takes care of Goku with a blast of his own. Fortunately, this was all the time Piccolo needed, and he fires his new attack, the Special Beam Cannon. Despite the power of the blast, however, Raditz side-steps it. Goku takes advantage of the distracted Raditz and grabs his tail, which Goku remembers as being one of his own weaknesses as a child. Raditz is rendered helpless, however he appeals to his brother to let him go if he promises to leave the planet, which Goku does, much to Piccolo’s chagrin. Raditz predictably double-crosses his brother, and pins him down, breaking bones and causing Goku much pain. At that moment, Raditz’s space pod explodes.

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Goku sacrifices himself to help Piccolo defeat Raditz

Gohan, who had been watching helplessly from inside Raditz’s pod, manages to blow the pod apart upon hearing his father’s screams. Raditz’s scouter detects the child’s power level to be 1,307, substantially higher than that of Goku and Piccolo. The infuriated Gohan charges at Raditz, who is unable to react in time, and receives a swift head-butt to the chest, breaking his Saiyan Armor. Gohan’s power level soon drops back to 1; and Raditz realizes that Gohan’s power is affected by his emotions. Raditz quickly smacks Gohan aside, but is still physically hurt by the previous attack. Goku, using what little strength he has left, leaps up and locks Raditz in a full nelson. Raditz is unable to break free, and Goku tells Piccolo to try his attack again. Piccolo does not hesitate to comply, knowing that the beam will kill Goku as well; though he knows that Goku’s friends will most likely use the Dragon Balls to resurrect him, he is nonetheless satisfied with killing his archenemy. He fires off another Special Beam Cannon, and Raditz, held by Goku, is unable to dodge it again, and the beam penetrates through both Raditz and Goku, mortally wounding both of them. Raditz curses Piccolo, but commends his brother’s spirit. Piccolo informs Raditz that Goku will be wished back to life using the Dragon Balls. Raditz, with his dying breath, retorts by saying that the scouter on his head acts as a transmitter as well, and that the other two Saiyans will come to Earth and avenge his death. Piccolo, upset at Raditz’s cockiness, delivers an early deathblow to him.

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Vegeta and Nappa talking about Dragon Balls

In space, the remaining two Saiyans, Nappa and Vegeta, get word of Raditz’s death by the message transmitted to their scouters. Vegeta is intrigued by the Dragon Balls, and they decide to head to Earth to use them to wish for immortality (rather than wishing Raditz back to life, as Raditz had hoped).

Back on Earth, Krillin, Master Roshi, and Bulma arrive at the scene, to find Raditz dead and Goku dying. Though they can bring him back with the Dragon Balls, Krillin takes watching his friend die very hard. Shortly after he expires, however, Goku’s body vanishes. Piccolo takes that to mean that the Guardian of Earth, Kami, has plans for Goku in the Other World. Piccolo then surprisingly regenerates his arm, tells the others of the impending arrival of two more powerful Saiyans, and picks up the unconscious Gohan, with the intention of training the child to fight the Saiyans. The others protest, but can do nothing to stop Piccolo.

Saiyan training

  • Episodes 5-21

In the Other World, Kami brings Goku to King Yemma, to ask permission for Goku to travel down the Snake Way with the intention of training with the Lord of Worlds, King Kai. Goku asks if Raditz came here as well, and is surprised when Yemma sent him to hell without too much trouble. Yemma also grants this request, and Goku begins his long and perilous journey down the one-million kilometer Snake Way.

Kami also makes a startling revelation; that the previous viciousness of Piccolo is beginning to recede. Because he had noticed that Raditz had been sent to Hell instead of spending eternity trapped in limbo as what happens when one gets killed by a demon, he begins to believe that Piccolo’s fear of the Saiyans is making him grow a conscience.

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Gohan eating an apple which he received from Piccolo

On Earth, Gohan wakes up, but to his dismay, he is with Piccolo and his father is nowhere to be found. Piccolo informs the child of his father’s death and says that he intends to train Gohan for the impending battle with the Saiyans. Gohan objects, but Piccolo quickly shows him that he does have a great power inside him; but only for brief moments. Piccolo then abandons him, claiming that if Gohan manages to survive for six months alone in the wilderness, the real training would begin. Gohan struggles with being on his own, and after being chased by a dinosaur, manages to get trapped on a cliff by using his hidden strength. With no way of getting down, Gohan settles down for the night after eating apples secretly brought by Piccolo. He awakens in the middle of the night to find a large full moon awaiting him. Gohan remarks about how he’s never seen the moon so big. However, upon this revelation, he begins transforming into a Great Ape, the Saiyan equivalent of a giant ape (Kami had revived the moon again after permanently removing Goku’s tail in Dragon Ball). Piccolo, who had been watching nearby, is shocked at this new form, and desperately tries to discover the source of the transformation. Needless to say, Great Ape Gohan destroys the mountain he was on and begins rampaging the countryside. Piccolo recalls something Raditz has said about the power of the moon on Saiyans with tails, and realizing that the moon would act as an advantage to the Saiyans, he destroys the moon, instantly causing Gohan to revert to his normal state. Seeing the tail as a weakness, Piccolo removes it from the passed-out Gohan, and gives him a new set of clothes and a sword, before disappearing.

Meanwhile, Kami calls together the strongest fighters on Earth in order to train them for the arrival of the Saiyans. The fighters selected to train on Kami’s Lookout are Krillin, Tien Shinhan, Yamcha, Chiaotzu, andYajirobe. Six months pass, Gohan is surviving in the desert and Goku is still running down Snake Way. Piccolo decides that Gohan’s survival training is finished, and begins to personally train him. Also, in the original anime (it is removed in Dragon Ball (Z) Kai), the Saiyans destroy planet Arlia on their way to Earth.

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Vegeta destroying Planet Arlia

Goku finally reaches the end of the Snake Way, and discovers a small planet “in orbit” above him. He leaps to the planet, but immediately discovers that despite its diminutive size, the planet has heavy gravity. After struggling to walk around the planet, Goku meets King Kai and his pet monkey, Bubbles. With only 88 days left before the Saiyans arrive, King Kai instructs Goku to chase and ultimately catch Bubbles, in order for Goku to become adjusted to the gravity. It takes Goku some time to accomplish this feat, but he does so in about two months. Also, in the Anime, Goku must hit a cricket named Gregory on the head with a hammer. King Kai then begins to instruct Goku on his two signature techniques: the Kaio-ken and the Spirit Bomb. Goku masters these techniques within a day of the Saiyan’s arrival on Earth. Unfortunately, King Kai realizes that even though Goku’s friends can wish Goku back to life, Goku still has to run all the way down Snake Way to get back to Earth. Goku, in a panic, telepathically instructs Master Roshi back on Earth to resurrect him. Master Roshi complies, having gathered the Dragon Balls over the past year, and summons Shenron, the Eternal Dragon of the Dragon Balls, and asks the Dragon to bring Goku back to life. The Dragon complies, Goku returns to life in the Other World, and immediately flies at top speed down the Snake Way. Then, one day later, the Saiyans arrive.

The battle against the Saiyans

  • Episodes 22-35
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The Saibamen are unleashed against the Z Fighters

Upon their arrival, the Saiyans Nappa and Vegeta immediately destroy the city they landed in. Vegeta, wanting to find the Dragon Balls, uses his scouter to determine the location of the strongest warrior on the planet, whom he presumes to be the one who killed Raditz. They head off towards Piccolo and Gohan. Piccolo and Gohan sense the incoming powers, as well as several smaller ones, who turn out to be Krillin, Yamcha, Tien, and Chiaotzu. The Saiyans arrive. When Krillin arrives, Nappa and Vegeta also reveal that they came to Earth to use the Dragon Balls for immortality. The Saiyans recognize Piccolo as being a Namekian. This revelation about his true origin shocks Piccolo for a while, with Kami also realizing that his creating the Dragon Balls was some kind of racial memory from his Namekian heritage. Nappa decides to letSaibamen beat up the fighters first, and plants seeds in the ground, which sprout and become six small green aliens. Tien fights one first, and easily bests it. Upon seeing this, Vegeta deduces that the fighters are concealing their power and easily destroys the defenseless Saibaman for its incompetence. Yamcha goes after another Saibaman, and seemingly defeats it with a Kamehameha. However, it instantly stands up again and latches on to him and self-destructs, killing both of them. An enraged Krillin snaps and launches a devastatingExpanding Energy Wave blast that splits off into six separate blasts, one for each remaining Saibaman and one for each of the two Saiyans.

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Piccolo battles against one of the Saibamen

The blast manages to kill three Saibamen immediately, Piccolo destroys one that hid from the blast and tried to attack Gohan. Vegeta and Nappa also survive the blast unscathed. Nappa then decides to step up and battle the Z Fighters himself. Vegeta tells Nappa not to kill Piccolo, as that would probably cease the Namek from revealing the location of the Dragon Balls as well (they are under the belief that he is the only one who knows of the Dragon Balls). Nappa goes on the offensive, powering up a great deal and choosing Tien at random to attack. He actually knocks off Tien’s arm, causing him extreme pain. Krillin tries to rescue his friend, but Nappa stops him by firing at powerful attack straight in front of him. Nappa, distracted, fails to notice Chiaotzu coming up behind him. Chiaotzu attaches onto Nappa and self-destructs, much to Tien’s dismay. When the smoke clears, Nappa remains, with no harm to him. Chiaotzu sacrificed himself for nothing.

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Nappa prepares to eliminate the Z Fighters

Tien, enraged, goes into an all-out attack against Nappa, who blocks all his attacks like nothing. Piccolo tells the others that once Nappa goes to the offensive, he will be unguarded, and they will sneak up and attack. The plan goes well until Gohan chickens out at the last second and runs away. Piccolo and Krillin, pretty much the only ones left, continue to fight Nappa, but are no match, even together. Tien, who is only alive through pure willpower, however, puts all of his energy into a final attack, a one-handed Tri-Beam. Unfortunately, this fails, and Nappa survives with only his armor damaged. Tien, who literally put his life into the attack, dies.

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Nappa goes berserk against Goku

Nappa prepares to make the kill on all three, however Vegeta, who had remained on the sidelines, halts him. Vegeta has deduced that “Goku” is Kakarot, and wants Nappa to wait three hours for Goku to arrive to provide punishment for the “traitor”, planning to continue the fight afterwards regardless of whether or not Goku is there. Nappa reluctantly agrees, much to the puzzlement of the remaining fighters, as Nappa is much larger in stature than the diminutive Vegeta. Goku, who had been flying down Snake Way for two straight days, finally reaches the end of the road. Kami appears to transport Goku back to Earth, and on his way to the battlefield, he receives two Senzu Beans from Korin, eats one of them himself to regain his strength, and rides the Flying Nimbus towards the action to conserve energy. Unfortunately, the three hours are up.

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Vegeta faces off against Goku

The remaining fighters formulate a plan to weaken Nappa by grabbing his tail, as Goku had done with Raditz. This ultimately fails, when Nappa reveals that elite Saiyans have learned to overcome the weakness of the tail. He then hits Piccolo on the head when Piccolo learns that it is hopeless. Piccolo is rendered unconscious, and Nappa attacks Gohan and Krillin for a while. Piccolo regains consciousness, and exclaims that Goku is coming. Vegeta’s scouter picks up Goku’s power level to be 5000, which shock the two Saiyans. Vegeta knows that since the Fighters have the ability to change their power as they see fit, 5000 is most likely the lowest power that Goku is exerting. Vegeta then orders Nappa to kill everyone before Goku arrives, as a team attack might prove to be a disadvantage. When Nappa argues about the Dragon Balls, Vegeta tells Nappa about the existence of Dragon Balls on Piccolo’s home planet, Namek. Gohan urges Piccolo to escape as his death would mean the end of the Dragon Balls on Earth and subsequently kicks Nappa in the head, sending him crashing into a cliff wall. However, he only succeeds in making Nappa angrier. The enraged Nappa launches his powerful Bomber DXblast at Gohan, but before it hits, Piccolo jumps in the way and takes the blast full force, killing him. Before his death Piccolo admits with tears in his eyes how he had enjoyed training with Gohan and how his innocence made him soft, leading up to the events of him eventually sacrificing his life for the boy. Up above Earth, Kami vanishes as well, as his being is linked with Piccolo’s due to their history. Gohan’s rage explodes and he fires his Masenko attack at Nappa, who blocks it. This surprises Vegeta, considering that Gohan’s power level upped from a low 981 to 2,800. However, finishing the attack leaves Gohan helpless. Fortunately, Goku arrives just in time.

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Vegeta battles Goku

Goku splits up the remaining Senzu Bean and gives a piece each to Krillin and Gohan. Nappa asks Vegeta what his scouter says about Goku’s power level. Vegeta responds that “IT’S OVER 9,000!!!” (which has become a popular internet joke, despite being a mistranslation of the original 8,000), destroying his scouter in a fit of rage. After quickly realizing that everyone else is dead, Goku gets very angry and begins fighting Nappa. Nappa is no match for Goku, and Vegeta orders him to back down. Nappa complies, but decides to take out Krillin and Gohan instead. Goku cannot catch up to Nappa, so he uses the Kaiō-ken technique to ram into Nappa, breaking his back, and rendering him useless. Goku throws Nappa at Vegeta’s feet. When Krillin asks him what he did, Goku replies that Kaio-ken utilizes all the potential energy within him and multiplies his reflexes, speed, senses, and power. However, Goku then comments that Kaio-ken’s weakness is that it damages his body if multiplied to an extent he can not handle and this might even kill him by causing him to explode with the pressure. Nappa begs for mercy, but Vegeta throws him up into the air, and destroys him with a single concentrated blast. Vegeta then sets his sights on Goku.

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Vegeta erupts with rage, unleashing his Galick Gun technique against Goku

Goku tells Vegeta that he wants to fight elsewhere so as to not destroy the bodies of his friends. They head off to a desert, while Gohan and Krillin fly back towards the Kame House. Vegeta implies that not many low-class warriors like Goku get to spar with the elite like Vegeta, but Goku replies that even a lower-class reject can surpass the elite if he tries hard enough. Goku and Vegeta begin to fight, and appear to be evenly matched. Vegeta tells Goku to release his hidden power, to which Goku complies. He engages the Kaio-ken, however Vegeta manages to defend against it. Vegeta powers up a great deal himself, and Goku uses the Kaio-ken x2, however, he still is not a match for Vegeta. Finally, Goku concentrates all of his energy into a Kaio-ken x3, raising his power level to 24,000, which worries King Kai. In this form, Goku gains the upperhand, and forces Vegeta to use one of his signature attacks. Flying straight up into the air, Vegeta powers up and unleashes his Galick Gun at Goku and the earth. Unable to move for fear of letting the blast hit the earth, Goku charges up to Kaio-ken x3 again and launches his own Kamehameha at Vegeta. The two blasts collide intensely, and Goku finally gains the upper hand by stepping up his Kaio-ken to x4. The Kamehameha overpowers Vegeta, who goes flying into the air. However, this leaves Goku’s body devastated.

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Vegeta dominates Goku after transforming into a Great Ape

Yajirobe, who had been hiding nearby the entire time, comes out to congratulate Goku, however when Goku says Vegeta is not defeated, he quickly hides again. Up in the air, Vegeta is enraged that Goku was able to surpass him and decides to transform into a Great Ape, however he discovers that the moon is gone. He flies back down to the ground and creates a Power Ball, that simulates a small moon at the cost of a significant amount of Ki. Vegeta then transforms into a Great Ape, however, unlike Goku or Gohan, he is able to remain in control of his body. Vegeta states that when a Saiyan transforms into a Great Ape, it multiplies their power ten-fold, and thus attacks Goku mercilessly. During this time, a shocked Goku has an extended flashback of his adoptive grandfather warning him of a monster outside during a full moon, Kami contemplating cutting his tail off, and finally remembers himself as a Great Ape destroying both Emperor Pilaf‘s castle and the stadium at the World Martial Arts Tournament, realizing that he was the one who destroyed both and crushed his grandpa to death. Goku manages to blind Vegeta with a Solar Flare and then attempts to create a Spirit Bomb, however Vegeta discovers it and shoots a Mouth Blast at him, causing him to lose most of the Spirit Bomb energy. Then he crushes Goku’s legs, leaving him paralyzed and unable to fight, and proceeds to crush him in his gigantic hands. Gohan and Krillin notice the strange power ball and rush back to aid Goku.

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Yajirobe runs after slicing off Great Ape Vegeta’s tail

Upon arriving, Gohan distracts Vegeta while Krillin uses his Destructo Discattack to try and cut off Vegeta’s tail. Vegeta senses the attack, and dodges it. Yajirobe, however, proves himself to be useful by cutting off Vegeta’s tail himself. Vegeta reverts to normal, and is obviously upset. Vegeta decides to attack Gohan, but Krillin intervenes, and is quickly disposed of. Goku calls Krillin over to him, and tells Gohan to fight Vegeta. Gohan holds his own, but is clearly outclassed. Goku hands off the remaining energy he gathered in forming the Spirit Bomb to Krillin, and King Kai tells him telepathically to throw the Spirit Bomb at Vegeta when the moment is right. Vegeta backs Gohan into a corner, and Krillin is about to throw it, however Yajirobe yells at Krillin for waiting so long. Vegeta hears this and manages to avoid the Spirit Bomb, and it heads right towards Gohan. Goku telepathically yells for Gohan to bounce it off, since the ball can not hurt those who are pure of heart. Gohan succeeds, and sends the ball hurling back at Vegeta, who, having just evaded it once, has no time to react a second time. The ball hits him squarely and he is sent back into the air again.

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Krillin holding Goku’s Spirit Bomb, as Goku was too weak to throw it

Gohan and Krillin gather around the paralyzed Goku. Suddenly, Vegeta’s body falls from the sky. Krillin comments that he’s dead, although Vegeta is indeed still alive, albeit with power greatly diminished. Vegeta attempts to defeat everyone with a giant energy explosion, but it does little and only leaves him drained. He goes after Gohan when he realizes to his horror that Gohan’s tail has grown back. Fearing what would happen if Gohan were to look at the Power Ball he created, Vegeta attempts to chop off Gohan’s tail.

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Krillin spares Vegeta’s life on Goku’s request

Yajirobe attacks the Saiyan with his sword, but this only distracts Vegeta for a moment, and Vegeta lashes out at the cowardly Yajirobe, knocking him into some mountains. Goku, telepathically, tells Gohan to look at the sky, which Gohan does, much to Vegeta’s dismay. Gohan transforms into a Great Ape, and, while initially attacking everything, begins to concentrate only on Vegeta with his father’s voice. After a beating from Great Ape Gohan, Vegeta manages to cut off Gohan’s tail with a Destructo Disc, however he has no energy left to move out of the way of the de-transforming ape, and is crushed by Gohan. When the dust clears, Krillin is the only one left capable of moving. He grabs Yajirobe’s katana that he dropped earlier, and staggers over to Vegeta, determined to stop him and put him down. Barely alive, Vegeta calls for his ship using a its control remote, however, Krillin gets to him before it arrives. Krillin is just about to kill Vegeta when Goku telepathically tells Krillin to spare him. In an emotional scene, Goku convinces Krillin to let Vegeta live because he had never fought someone so strong and this made him more excited than scared. Because of this, Goku desires to have a rematch with him someday; he also expresses a belief that Vegeta may learn mercy and reform as Piccolo did. Though understandably skeptical, Krillin ultimately decides to trust Goku’s judgment and lets Vegeta go. Vegeta vows to make Goku regret sparing him before he departs. The story is continued in the Namek Saga.