“This truly is justice. Power, intellect, fire and light, all shall return to the Gods. This filthy world, sullied by the violence of mortals, shall be reborn as the ideal world for Gods, by Gods”
Zamasu, Dragon Ball Super
Goku Is The New Black!
Last time on Dragon Ball Super, we covered the “Universe 6” arc of Dragon Ball Super. We are exploring the relationship between Gods and Mortals in Dragon Ball Super. Along the way I get to gush over how much I love Dragon Ball and try to sound smart (no chance) while doing so.
Also, quick spoiler(ish) warning. This is the arc that majorly influenced the whole idea these posts have been about so yeh, strap yourselves in for a long and bump ride.
Dragon Ball Super is full of fan service (little bonus’ for long time fans) and this is where it really started to shift into high gear since this fan favourite made a return.
This is Trunks, Vegeta and Bulma’s son from the future. In a previous arc it is Trunks that comes from the future to warn of the impending arrival of the Androids and the destruction of mankind at their hands.
He came from a post apocalyptic future where the Androids were allowed to run rampant and kill most of humanity off. His mother, Bulma, was able to create a time machine and sent him back to stop Goku from dying of a heart virus so he was able to fight the Android menace. He was successful in his mission and after stopping the Androids and Cell in the present (the timeline we’ve been watching since the beginning) he travelled back to his future and with the strength he had gained he was able to vanquish the Androids and bring peace to his Earth. It looked like the young time traveller had finally found peace, but you know where this is going.
Years after the incident with the Androids, Trunks’ future is in peril once again. This time there is a monster on the loose and this one has a familiar face.
Yes the monster that’s tearing apart the Earth in the future looks exactly like Goku and let me tell you something. Dragon Ball started with Bulma meeting Goku in the mountains all those years ago and watching Goku (Black) kill Bulma during his reveal was a punch to the soul. It was a twisted return to Dragon Ball’s origins and it really told you at the beginning of this arc that something was really amiss.
After seeing his mother killed right in front of him, Trunks is able to scramble into the time machine and once more head to the past for help from history’s greatest heroes.
Our heroes are surprised and shocked to not only see Trunks reappear after all these years but also that he looks battle fatigued. Trunks goes to attack Goku in his confusion before being slapped by his (present) mother Bulma and brought to his senses. Meanwhile in the future Black is looking for Trunks’ Ki but is unable to locate him anywhere on Earth. But then the ring on Black’s hand starts to react to the time distortion created by the time machine.
In the present Beerus and Whis have appeared on the scene and Beerus is very annoyed that time travel has been used as it is strictly prohibited, even amongst the Gods. Beerus considers wiping Bulma (it’s her invention) and Trunks out but Goku begs him to let it slide. Beerus agrees that if they can give him something he’s never eaten before then he will forgive them because of course he does.
Trunks explains the situation in the future to everyone and Goku suggests a sparring match to gauge his own power with Blacks. Goku is surprised at how strong Trunks was able to become all by himself but Trunks says that he is nothing compared to Black which gets Goku excited, because of course it does. What is wrong with the characters in this show?
After the match however a portal opens in the sky and Black emerges from it. Trunks goes to attack Black but is stopped by Vegeta and Goku proceeds to approach and confront Black. Beerus and Whis recognise the ring on Blacks hand as a Time Ring, a device used by the Gods to visit the past or future to observe events and not to interfere in them.
Goku and Black begin to fight with Goku demanding to see Blacks full power. Black just laughs and says “why should we rush things?” explaining that he is excited to fight Goku “in this body”. When Goku asks what that means Black just laughs at him when suddenly the portal starts to convulse and Black is visibly affected by it. The distortion created by the time machine is starting to normalise and it is pulling Black back through it .Before it can however Black notices the time machine and attacks it, effectively stranding Trunks in the past.
After this, Piccolo asks whether or not Black is a Supreme Kai since not only is it them that can use the time rings but there was something peculiar about his ki also. Beerus explains that a Supreme Kai wouldn’t have Goku’s exact appearance but him and Whis are clearly troubled by Blacks Ki signature.
Trunks is able to have some down time while the Time Machine is being fixed and the Gods do some investigating. Whis is pretty sure he knows Blacks true identity and he sets off with Beerus and Goku to Universe 10 to visit a Kai named Zamasu.
As an aside, in the first part of this adventure I mentioned a film called Dragonball Evolution. The villain in that film is Piccolo, played by James Marsters (Spike from Buffy The Vampire Slayer), he has always maintained he is a massive Dragon Ball fan and even apologised to the fan community for the terrible film that was Dragonball Evolution.
Well it seems he was given his chance to make up for it since he now is the English voice of Zamasu who has become a fan favourite villain. I’m glad to see he was able to make up for that aweful movie, if only for his own sanity. Anyway, back on topic.
Zamasu is next in line to be Supreme Kai once the current one, Gowasu, retires. Zamasu is also unique among Kais in that he is a “fighting genius” (much like Goku) and despite being promoted to one of the highest levels in the universe it’s clear that he doesn’t have much respect for the lifeforms below him. Zamasu, while having tea with Gowasu, casually describes how he would kill mortals to stop their endless destructive ways. Gowasu explains that it is not their place to intervene, only to observe.
Goku and the others arrive shortly after and Whis gets Gowasu up to speed on the Goku Black problem and ask him to show them the Time Rings. Goku, excited to learn that Zamasu is strong, asks for a sparring match against Zamasu to which Zamasu refuses. It is not the place of mortals to ask such things of a God.
Gowasu insists Zamasu fight Goku and says it will be part of his training. Goku powers up to Super Saiyan 2 and the Kais are shocked that a mortal could posses such power. Goku wins their sparring match and he and the Gods leave shortly after but Goku has clearly left his mark on Zamasu. Zamasu is shocked that a mortal would show such disrespect to the Gods and declares that he won’t forget Goku anytime soon. On the journey back to Earth Whis declares that Zamasu was suppressing his cold heart.
After a short while back on Earth the Time Machine is repaired and ready to make a trip to the future when Goku suddenly gets a summons from Zeno, the Omni King I mentioned last time.
Zeno has taken a shine to Goku and wants him as someone to play with. Goku however has other things he needs to be getting on with and promises “Zenny”, as he starts calling him, that he will bring an even better friend for him to play with. This greatly excites the Omni-King and Goku is allowed to leave to get back to the main plot, but not before Zenny gives him a two sided button. One side will bring Goku straight to him and the other will bring him straight to Goku.
Back in Universe 10 however Gowasu is trying to show Zamasu that mortals can be redeemed and he takes Zamasu to a planet where intelligent life is just starting its journey. They are greeted by a barbarian style race who are carrying clubs around to hit each other with. Zamasu says that this proves his point, mortals are barbaric and can only destroy, Gowasu offers to prove him wrong and proceeds to use the Time Ring to travel 1000 years into the future to see how this culture develops. What they find however is not good, at least for Zamasu’s prejudices.
The Barbarians are in the middle of a war still hitting each other with clubs and showing no progression at all. Gowasu laments that it is still not their place to interfere when one of the creatures proceeds to charge them. Zamasu easily stops the beasts attack and in one swift move he cuts the creature in half with an energy blade. When they return to their homeworld Gowasu berates Zamasu for his actions, but it is clear that Zamasu has made up his mind about mortals.
Back on Earth, it is time for our heroes to head to the future and confront Goku Black. Now word of warning, if this has seemed long and confusing so far then prepare yourself. It only gets stranger from here on out.
Goku and Vegeta are led by Trunks to meet the resistance before heading off to do battle. Goku Black is seen happily embracing the dead world he has created when Vegeta shoots an energy blast into the air, signalling that they have arrived. Vegeta begins to battle Black and for a while it seems like he has the upper hand until Black compliments Vegeta on raising to such a height of power. Black then proceeds to power up to reveal his new transformation.
Goku Black has reached a new level, Super Saiyan Rose (it’s not clear if it’s meant to be said like the flower or the wine so you decide). He uses this form to beat Vegeta into the ground, seemingly outclassing him in every way. Goku charges into the fray and begins to battle Black when they are suddenly interrupted by the arrival of Zamasu (the one from this timeline) who takes a place at Blacks side. This confirms two things for our heroes, Zamasu is indeed evil and seeing them together confirms they can’t be the same person. So just who in the hell is Goku Black?
The battle continues with Trunks now joining the fight and after seemingly gaining the upper hand, Trunks is able to stab Zamasu through the chest with his sword. Zamasu is not affected however and after Trunks unleashes a powerful blast at him he reveals that he now has an immortal, ultimate body and cannot be harmed. Our heroes then proceed to be beaten bloody and bruised by the now nigh unstoppable duo of Black and Zamasu. Just when all seems lost however the fighters are rescued by the resistance using tear gas as cover to pull our heroes to safety.
The resistance hurriedly place Trunks, Vegeta and Goku in the Time Machine and send them back to the past to try and think up a plan to surpass Black and Zamasu in strength. They arrive back in the past and after recovering from their wounds they tell everyone about the events in the future. Universe 7’s Supreme Kai, Shin, appears on the scene to inform everyone that Zamasu has been asking about the Super Dragon Balls and their ability to grant any wish that is asked of them.
Goku and the others come to the conclusion that the future Zamasu must’ve wished for his immortal body and then after a year (when the wish granting ability resets) asked them to make him Goku Black as a servant. Beerus interjects that that doesn’t explain why their Ki felt so similar and that mystery still needs solving.
Now convinced that Zamasu was going to kill his mentor and steal the Time Ring, Goku and the Gods head back to Universe 10 to confront Zamasu under the guise they are bringing food from Universe 7 as a gift. They don’t stay long though much to Goku’s shock and after dropping off the food they depart as quickly as they arrived. They don’t get far however before they stop (in the middle of space) and Whis begins to observe Gowasu and Zamasu with his staff.
Gowasu proceeds to eat the gifted food and Zamasu swings behind him, preparing an energy blade attack as he does so. Zamasu strikes Gowasu down, killing his master in cold blood. Goku is distraught at this saying that they may now have evidence of his evil actions but they let an innocent Kai die in the process. Whis however reminds Goku of his trump card, he can rewind time by three minutes and they can stop Gowasu being murdered.
They rewind time and intervene, with Goku revealing they knew of Zamasu’s plan. Zamasu doesn’t know how they could have learned of his plans and in a panic goes to attack. But his attack is easily stopped by Beerus who proceeds to destroy Zamasu, seemingly ending this whole charade. Gowasu vows he must choose his next apprentice more diligently.
Goku returns to Earth with the others to tell everyone what has happened. Beerus declares that the future timeline will be safe now thanks to his intervention but Trunks is sceptical and has good reason to be. Trunks has been to the past before remember, to try and save the world from the Androids and while he was able to save the present timeline the future timeline was unaffected. Dragon Ball’s time travel operates on multiverse theory, when you travel through time you are technically going to a parallel universe. So multiple timelines don’t necessarily influence each other because in the words of TeamFourStar, “Multiverse Theory is a bitch”. Goku and Vegeta say they will travel back with Trunks just in case Beerus is wrong.
They get back to the future (so many possible Marty McFly jokes in this article it’s crazy) to discover that Trunks was right to worry, nothing has changed. Goku Black and Zamasu arrive on the scene and the battle begins anew with Goku declaring they now know what is going on to which Goku Black laughs and reveals the missing piece of the puzzle. Goku Black IS Zamasu!
Now this is where it gets really fucking weird. Remember how the Time Rings can take you to the future and you can return unhindered to where you began but you can’t travel to the past without being pulled back like what happened to Black at the start of this arc?
Now remember that Multiverse Theory is a bitch? Now remember Whis rewound time? Well it goes like this, there are three timelines at work here and I will do my best to explain.
Our timeline, Beerus kills Zamasu and the future of that Timeline is fine. This is the Timeline our Goku and Vegeta are from.
Remember they let Zamasu kill Gowasu THEN rewound time? This timeline takes place in the universe where Zamasu kills Gowasu unhindered because Goku and Beerus didn’t intervene. By rewinding time they technically created another timeline where Zamasu continued his plans unhindered. That Zamasu then went on to collect the Super Dragon Balls and wish to have his soul put into Goku’s body making himself Goku Black. He then proceeds to kill Goku (in Zamasu’s body) and his whole family in what is a pretty creepy part of the anime.
Then that Zamasu proceeds to use the Time Ring he took from Gowasu (the one on Blacks finger from earlier) to travel to Timeline C (below) to recruit that Zamasu.
Zamasu (in Goku’s body) arrives in Future Trunks’ timeline to recruit that universes Zamasu. So now there are two Zamasu’s, one is Goku Black and the other is just Zamasu. Just Zamasu then collects the Super Dragon Balls and wishes for an immortal body.
Did you get all of that? No? Of course you fucking didn’t! And neither did anyone else. This whole thing was so confusing that every fan forum was ablaze with people trying to work it out and contradicting each other left, right and centre. TOEI Animation (the company that makes Dragon Ball Super) had to put out a “helpful” diagram just to try and help people understand it.
Just think about this for a second, Dragon Ball Super is a kids show and the plot was so confusing (even to adults watching) that the company in charge had to put out a statement showing/explaining what had happened. When has that ever happened in a TV show? Oh that’s right, FUCKING NEVER.
I have made a decision to break this arc up into two write ups and I swear it’s not just to pad out the run time of these articles. This post is currently over the 3000 word mark and I think both you (if anyone ever reads this 😛 ) and I need a break after all this broken timeline nonsense.
So yeh, no summary this time but I’m sure you already know which way the “Gods are morons” meter is swinging. All of that will be decided next time on Dragon Ball Z!
Thanks for reading and take care of yourselves. Peace.
With a new Dragon Ball came a new version of “Cha-la Head Cha-la”, the song every Dragon Ball fan can’t help but sing along to (even if we don’t know the words).