Pinkie Ponders: How Could Humans Transform in Dragon Ball

I have been pretty bedridden the last couple of days, which let me catch up with some games, tv series, anime and my thoughts… one of these thoughts went to Dragon Ball. I saw a bit about Krillin and wondered.. what would the next level of evolution look like for him. So I decided to let my brain come up with a way humans could transform.. and here is what I came up with.

Step 1: Pinkie’s Guideline for Transformation

So we won’t be doing this!

Now how do I tackle this problem?! Well first of all we need to make the transformation a functional one! Of course I am delving in the realm of fan fiction here but I would not want to turn humans into something they are not. So no giant form, or them suddenly becoming rubber or something. It would also need to do something. I can say humans get a 10x power boost and their hair turns purple and skin  turns pale.. but a 10x power boost will not make any difference and besides that there are possibilities to just use Kaioken for those levels of output. The tricky part here is that we can easily not actually provide a transformation for humans themselves. After all we could just say humans and saiyans are clearly compatible as they can interbreed, we may have the same forefathers and humans have a saiyan-like transformation as well. It would not even be that far fetched. 

No trash Gohan! Best of both worlds Gohan will rock!

This would not really allow humans to stand on their own though. Not only do Saiyans already have a faster base growth, there is also issues like Zenkai boosts, the power boost Saiyans get after they have been defeated. Humans don’t have that so just giving humans a golden form of their own.. would not feel right. Then there also would be the fact that humans getting blond hair and blue eyes and calling themselves a person which has transcended humanity is a bit iffy! Yet neither are the main reasons I opted out of this route! No .. the real reason is Gohan! Well him , Goten and Trunks to be exact. Hybrid Saiyans are made a big deal… However in my eyes the show does very little to establish humanity in Gohan, Goten and Trunks. It is merely reflected in their personality. If we give humans a transformation however.. I want it to be able to coexist with a Super-Saiyan transformation. This will mean that there will be big changes in the story and Goku and Vegeta might just take a back-seat towards the Hybrids later on.

We can’t mess (too much) with the iconic moments!

The third factor I am taking into consideration is that it has to keep humans relevant to the story. During the Saiyan Saga, humans were not relevant.. and only during the Namek Arc did Krillin have a few fights where he would be relevant. After that, it all goes down the drain fast. I do not say humans are weak but clearly they can not top the Saiyans in terms of sheer power. We must find a way to equal the playing ground at least a bit. Of course the series only started to be be transformation heavy on Namek, and I do not want to make the Super Saiyan moment less Iconic.. so transformations have to come after that. Yes.. most likely there will be gold! As golden Frieza is an ultimate form as well I might as well keep the theme up a bit. Either way… it does mean that this power is more or less stumbled upon.. as if a human had extra abilities people were aware off, it would have come up earlier. 

Transformation has to be show in Manga and sell toys!

The fourth and final factor I will need to take into consideration is that this transformation works both in Manga and in Anime, Dragon Ball is a Multi Media franchise after all. So stuff like an eye colour change, or the aura taking a faintly other shape will not be enough we have to make something up that  people can instantly see and go like “oh heck yeah Krillin is using his transformation”  Something that looks badass but also is unique to humans. That was quite a task..but I think I have come up with a great solution, that feels very in line with humans and martial arts alike.

Step 2:  Coming up with “type” of transformation

Clearly Humans would not use Transformations as restraint!

Now to make a unique transformation and keep humans relevant let’s take a look at all the other races that we know that do have transformations and how they work. First of all there are of course the Saiyans, who transform by anger/emotion. The power works as an enhancement. It boosts their power level by several factors, the amount of energy needed and wasted depends on what form they are in.  Then there is the Frieza race, who transforms based on mostly innate talent. The race has access to extreme raw power and the transformations are sealed as it were to keep one from being destroyed by their own power. The transformation works like a metamorphosis and is reached by unleashing power.

Our transformation has to be cooler than that!

The Namekian transformation is lesser known and it literally allows a Namekian to grow. As Namekian’s do “grow” as plants and are genderless this makes sense. It mirrors them well.  Then there are the androids, who in some cases transform.  Cell, Android 13 and Android 21 had access to transformations.. and while all work in slightly different ways, the concept of their transformation is Augmentation. The biggest asset of this transformation is to give them a higher reserve of power.. it is additive transformation. Meaning it is the sum of several parts not the multiplication of one. The Majin transformation basically is exactly the same as that of the Androids, one adds parts to gain that parts strength.

Our transformation ,should probably be less heavy on Trucker Hat!

Saiyans seem to be the allrounders,  that get better at what they already do. The Frieza Race gets more destructive as they transform and the androids, even Cell are slightly more defensively focussed. Android 17 is known for his barriers, but Cell uses these as well, 19 and Gero absorbed energy in a defensive capacity as well. Namekians trough the series from Z onwards mostly work as guides. Piccolo is more so a teacher and a Mentor rather than a fighter. Kami has always been a guide and Dende works as a healer. Majins are a bit of a mirror match fighter idea. While we later also see other transformations like magical girls nearly all of the transformations fall either in the “healer, Fighter or Tank”  archetypes. So with humans I wanted to go with the fourth option… support.  Clearly the show is about Goku, Gohan Vegeta and the likes and that will not change. So for humans to have a transformation it would need to  be one that can help the main characters.. but that also can turn Gohan into an absolute beast of a warrior.

Pokémon is always a good analogy!

How do we do this?! Well Saiyans are a race of Barbarians, a race of soldiers and warriors they grow through fighting. Namekians work like plants, they grow like plants.. so how do humans grow like earthlings? We evolve. We adapt. This adaptability is shown as the factor that keeps humans in the fight. Even in Dragon Ball Super this is shown. Roshi and Krillin perform fairly well as fighters in the tournament of power.. (as well as Tenshinhan)   because they fight smartly. So the human transformation will allow them to do that.. it will allow them to “evolve”. As such it will trigger in situations of near death.. Like a Zenkai boost.. but before the actual injury! If you are about to die or confronted with death you can “evolve” It can be explained as the reason why women can suddenly move steel beams when trying to save their baby from a burning home, and how people escape from near death situations by the sheer will to survive. Darwinism and the will to live triggers this transformation. So it might not be to much of a surprise that the first human we see transform in the series would be Yamcha.

Step 3: How does it Look, How does it work?!

My first Human Transformation!

The transformation will happen during the beginning of the Android Saga, when Dr Gero finds Yamcha and starts draining his life.  We flash back to how Yamcha was killed by  the Saibaman which now instead of a meme will act like a trigger. Yamcha, Grabbed by Gero finds himself in a fairly similar situation.  He is grabbed in a hold and can sense death is coming. However this time his body reacts instinctively. The Dr is draining his Ki but suddenly that Ki begins to take shape. It turns golden and rather than just being a field of energy it takes a shape much closer to Yamcha’s body.. as it forms two extra arms. Golden  translucent arms that Yamcha can move as his own.. and he can fire an energy blast with them?! Yamcha uses this ability to escape, damaging Dr Gero, who now is forced to retreat a bit earlier. Goku catches up sensing Yamcha’s Ki rise and the rest of the story would follow the normal trend for a while.. but a surprised Yamcha stands there with an evolved Ki Aura.

Bodhisattva, the deity of compassion

Humans adapt… and even in D&D or in most other fiction they are always depicted as a race that is good at fitting in.. at adapting to new environments to overcome new dangers.  So since the Ki of other races reacts to their state of being it makes sense that that of a human would be as well. Grounded in the concept of evolution, while it would not evolve the human itself, one skilled enough with Ki to create energy blasts can use their own live energy to evolve their life energy.. to adapt it. These transformations I will base on the Bodhisattva.. the goddess of compassion. The Saiyan transformation has some potential overlap to Chakra and I thought it would be fun to keep a eastern influence to the transformation as well, that works well with the schooling in the Dragon Ball world.  Being the voice of compassion and sympathy these transformations do not focus on raw power but allow a fighter to use his own strength to overcome and adapt.

Tien gets the more boring transformation but Japan doesn’t like Tien anyway!

Later forms could include a third eye, linking back to Tien’s history and his people never fully closing that off, that unlike Ultra Instinct would work more like Tsuna from Hitman’s Reborn Hyper Intuition allowing you to see when blinded, or allowing you to see enemy weaknesses. A third form could be a flaming aura that could punish an enemy from engaging in Melee too much, which once again seems to be a weakness of the humans. Divine Hands, Divine Eye and Divine Fury could later potentially lead into humans adapting it to god ki and potentially Ultra instinct as well.

Gohan using all three human transformations

Best off all.. this would all work on Gohan. When Cell broke his arm when Gohan saved Vegeta from perfect Cell, instead of just learning Super Saiyan 2, he could have learned Divine hands as well..showing Gohan is indeed.. not just like his father he is human as well.. wielding their transformation. Divine Eye he could awaken in his fight with Basil, in the Tournament of Power Exhibition Match. Divine Fury Gohan could learn either during the Buu Arc to shield himself from being absorbed by Majin Buu.. OR during the Tournament of Power when he fights Dyspo.. who mostly relies on Melee attacks.Unlike other transformations, humans can get theirs in random order. Krillin for example would probably Awaken Divine Wrath first, Tien Divine Eye and Yamcha like explained would be the perfect candidate for Divine hands!

Firing one beam and hitting your opponent with in the back with another seems powerful?!

Being able to shoot two beams might not seem very powerful, but Humans have the ability to bend their Ki beams, so shooting two could lead to a pincer attack. A Ki beam is always higher than the power level of the human wielding it as was revealed in several magazines.  A double Masenko fired at the same target might not do much.. but two bending Kamehameha’s striking from the front and back.. would have HUGe benefits.  Looking for a weak spot in an attacking would allow humans to use techniques like the destructo disc or Yamcha spirit ball to be way more precise and effective sealing punches away works great against henchman .. and let’s be honest here, the humans will still be fighting the henchman still!

The fights during the Moro Arc could be super interesting with transformations!

A lot of techniques would have implications during the Moro Arc as well, humans could use Divine Eye to work a bit more in an exposition fashion so Beerus and Whis could actually stick to their principals of not meddling. Divine Wrath can be used to shield against the new Android introduced in that arc and Divine hands can help Gohan use his new shield technique.. while also taking potshots at enemies from behind said shield!  It will keep humans relevant without changing the power levels to much! 

So how would you give humans transformations in Dragon Ball?!  Have you ever thought about it? What did you think about my idea? Let me know in the comments!  Now I am gonna see if I can develop Divine pillows, so I can take the best naps! Shine on my little lights! Oyasumi!

It’s over 9000! The true power of Dragon Ball!

A lot of people see Dragon Ball (Z mostly) as that show that is about shouting people, with changing hair colors and three minutes that go on forever and ever.  Where the main character sounds like a kid (I am a sub girl) fighting evermore increasingly stupid powerful enemies. Yet this show really isn’t all about power levels and transformations. These are but means to convey the true message that is inside this truely amazing series.  Here’s a Kamehameha of love to the face!

(Pink Kamehameha Equals Love Kamehameha)

A Journey to the West

When Toriyama started the Dragon Ball series , we faced a completely different beast than we did today. In fact the original series that was very loosely based on Journey to the West and mostly Son Wukong in most places only came to the west after it’s sequel became such a success. The original series felt much more contained, never larger than life. It was just about a kid wanting to be the strongest martial artist or find his grandfather’s relic just to find out it was connected to something bigger.  It was more lighthearted and the pacing was so much slower. A lot more credible as well. Yet while everyone seems to agree that Dragon Ball Z was a completely different type of beast there is so much they have in common as well. As do all subsequent shows… even GT. In their core all the adventures of Goku and his friends are about a journey and their biggest enemy they face is never the villain of the arc, the worst villain in Dragon Ball is always the heroes themselves.

No no I don’t mean Goku Black or other evil counterparts, even though there are a lot. Dragon Ball in it’s very concept is a show about facing and breaking your limits. From the first world tournament , well .. (or the 21st world tournament if you prefer) up until and even beyond the Tournament of Power, virtually none of the enemies are defeated by simply a straight up fight the real obstacle to overcome is themselves. It’s about a journey of transcendence, to rise above oneself and break your limits. According to Toriyama that journey to surpass yourself  just happens to involve a lot of shouting and occasionally changing hairstyles. I wish I could change hairstyles by breaking my limits. I am just not sure about turning british for it though, but maybe that just happens to Sean Schemmel.

(The name is Goku Black Mate I’m like a Narky Goku, You Cheeky Bastard)

Snake Way

Toriyama goes through great length to teach us what it means to break your own limits, it’s a long and arduous journey which is reflected throughout the entire series, but  which is most apparent in Dragon Ball Z. When we look at series like Naruto or Bleach for example, training can be somewhat fun and Ichigo managed Bankai in an extremely short time, Naruto can use shadow clones to learn moves faster, and later even spontaneously learns them. While Goku is a savant that can do a Kamehameha in one attempt it never is truly enough. Where Ichigo can learn the final Getsuga while travelling, Goku has to travel Snake Way just to get a chance of training. It’s a long and boring journey that is very uneventful and does not result in direct pay off.  We also see this happen during the cell games when Goku and Gohan focus on staying inside their super saiyan forms. First of all, the series establishes that they can not get a result over night, they have to train for at least a year to rise above themselves, and even then it wasn’t enough. Both Goku and Gohan had to let go of their kind heartedness to do what must be done. Resulting in Super Saiyan and Super Saiyan 2 respectively. Sometimes what holds you back.. is you and the only way to break free of it is experiencing pain and loss…well that or a tingly feeling in your back.

This theme that power doesn’t come easy is continued throughout the series. When Gohan is meditating on the planet of the Kai’s or when Goku in GT is forced to accept the being he truly is by reclaiming his tail, a part of him he put away/ learned to ignore a long time ago. Power never comes easy in this universe and almost always feels earned.  Sure the Zenkai boosts are convenient, (a saiyan gets stronger when he suffers massive injuries but recovers) through the use of senzu beans and health pods but it’s still a heavy price to pay. Characters suffer defeat oftenly many times before they come out victorious. Even Goku had his fair chair of losses or times that he got downed. Yet the best message that dragon ball sends is that his power should never be gotten through cheating.  Plenty of villains have wished, and sometimes even obtained immortality (mostly in the movies though) yet even with the earth in constant danger never has a z-fighter wished for more power. It would be so easy to simply wish for the strength needed to defeat earth and it would most likely not beyond Shenron’s limits yet it barely even got considered throughout the series. That is because this show teaches you to deal with your own problems. Dealing with them may be tedious, it may be a drag and it will not come easy but everyone can do it. No matter where you come from (Namekian, Saiyan, Android and in GT  and OG even humans) all can break their limits and achieve new heights. 

Keep Fighting

We dutch have a saying that is called Huisje Boompje Beestje, (Little House, Little Tree, Little Creature) which signifies what we all strive for. Some call it the american dream others talk about that white picket fence. It’s the common happiness, that everyone thinks is the ultimate goal. Get a job and a house, get married, reproduce and possibly get a pet. For many that shared happiness is enough! Toriyama says NO! It is not enough. Everyone has to chase their own dream, not just that shared one. From early in the series we see Goku as an amazingly talented kid that gets offered the option at the common dream. We see it when he meets Chi-chi we see it at how he performs in tournaments and gets a fair bit of price money. In Dragon Ball Z and later it becomes really apparent. Yes it is a meme to call Goku a bad father and maybe he is, but that is because he doesn’t just settle for being a father. He can’t stop dreaming about being stronger just because he had Gohan and now has to give everything up for that. No! Dragon Ball shows it is okay to have wishes of your own, after all had Goku followed the common dream, earth would have been destroyed many times over.  Sure it also would have been in danger a lot less but it wouldn’t have stopped the Saiyans from coming and destroying us. Cell would have still awoken in time because Gero was already wronged by kid Goku. Toriyama tells us to fight for our dreams and to get strong enough to seize that. We should not let common sense or setteling get in the way between us and our dreams!
We should push ourselves to our full hearts content.

Yet the mangaka also tells us that even if we get our dream, we gotta keep dreaming even bigger. By chasing our desire, we keep moving, we stay on our journey. If I manage to get healthy enough to get an income again, I should strive for a job I would like better still. If I find the job I would like to do for the rest of my life or get filthy rich through sheer luck , I can make sure I spend that money in ways to make me happy. If I bought everything I want I should desire more. Because it’s that ambition to get something that I can not have at this time that I am pushed to strive for that I become a better version of myself. In a much more invisible way , I transform. I am not sure if Goku turning arian  was the best way to convey this message but in a way Toriyama chased his own happiness when he made Super Saiyan. The design stems from his wish not to spend as much time colouring in Goku’s hair. He wanted to be quicker and he made that happen by pushing his story to the next level. Goku is more than a saiyan, more than a hero he is unlimited potential embodied. He is a perfect symbol of what we should strive for. We should always be chasing our own dreams, we should not be bound by the white picket fence because it’s better for our children or pet.
If it is your dream to make others happy than chase that dream, if it’s your dream to have children than go find your significant other, but never stop dreaming. When you have children, you can still learn to play the piano,you could finally build the model planes you wanted or even pick up crochet or whatever. Whatever you do, make sure you have something to face, something to fight for. This is why Goku keeps wanting to fight stronger opponents, but also why he keeps most of his enemies alive and befriends them. When there is no strife in your life, no conflict, you can be perfectly content, but you have way less possibility to grow. You can choose to stay away from that friend who doesn’t like your new boyfriend or girlfriend because they do not matter for your picket white fence goal. You wouldn’t really miss the negativity. Yet you would rob yourself of a chance to lead a fuller live. Balancing that friend and your love may be hard but it will make stronger socially, it might make you better in terms of time management it might make you a better friend, who fights for those dear to them.  This series tells us to keep fighting no matter what!

Erase the Universe

There is a saying that it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all which is true. Yet suddenly when we have that love, all forward motion seems to stop. It seems that is better to give up dreaming and growing than to have lost a love. You have to turn down that promotion so your daughter can stay with her friends,  you have to stay close to your family even if you would be happier elsewhere. There is something very twisted about that logic to me. For love should be about happiness. If it is your desire is to be the best blogger in the world and I mean if i’s truly your desire than your loved one should never ask you to give this up. We should encourage each other to grow but that grow will come with risks.  Again this risk is always depicted in Dragon Ball. When reaching Super Saiyan for the first time Goku almost lost himself. His marriage is under constant pressure from all the time he spends training. Many people call the relation with Goku and his family unhealthy yet at the same time Chi-Chi allows her man so much she does in fact accept that he is like that. She might not be happy about it but life isn’t a fairy tale. There’s always things about the other you do not like. Like how Goku doesn’t like how Chi-Chi can get obsessed with careers and money but still allows her to have these desires and dreams and at least somewhat tries to support her in that. Goku is always in motion as should we be. Yet when you are walking or running towards your new dream, there is always the risking of being tripped over.  The further we get along in our development, the bigger steps we have to take.. which increases the chance of tripping.  

(Sometimes we bite of more than we can chew..but at least we get icecubes for our drinks)

When Goku fought Frieza he nearly lost himself, when facing Cell he risked the bond with his son, and the entire earth on a chance, and when he had no strong opponents left to fight he hired Hit to kill him (in which hit succeeded) only to risk the entire universe just for a chance to fight someone even stronger.  When chasing our dreams first we might just upset our parents with our next dream we may upset our love and in the next phase Arceus forbid we may even upset our offspring. Who knows if we push ourselves far enough we might even disappoint everyone. Yet if I learned anything about your dreams and own happiness is that it is always worth the risk. If you are a transgender, wanting to transition, keep fighting! Don’t settle for the next best thing .. by just dressing up on sundays. If you are gay, don’t keep that side hidden. Take the risk losing over it, fight your fights. Goku never stopped and neither should we. Only by fighting for what we truly want and keep that up we can become bigger than ourselves. There is a Super Saiyan inside all of us even if  the world outside may not always recognise it. If you fight for what you want and keep growing, even if it takes you longer than you’d hope or isn’t as pleasant as you want, one day you will see that golden warrior in the mirror.