This Day, 22 Years Ago, Goku Finally Turned Into A Super Saiyan: Why This Was A Seminal Moment in Dragon Ball Z History

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For many fans who grew up watching Dragon Ball Z, the climactic moment when Goku turned into a Super Saiyan is forever iconic. He achieved the form in Episode 95, and it has since become one of the most pivotal scenes in the franchise.

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Son Goku Super Saiyan Transformation in Dragon Ball Z

Manga series creator Akira Toriyama explained that Goku’s transformation was brought by the increase of the so-called ‘S-Cells’ in him, most likely triggered by his rage towards Freeza killing Krillin in the wake of the Namek saga. The latter’s death was more of a revenge move by Freeza following the destruction caused by Goku’s Spirit Bomb attack.

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What Does It Take To Achieve Super Saiyan?

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Goku’s transformation explained by creator Akira Toriyama

Toriyama, however, clarifies that becoming a Super Saiyan is not merely a switch that turns on when one gets angry. In a Q&A post published by Dragon Ball Super, the manga creator expounded on this:

It’s not like anyone can become a Super Saiyan through training and anger. In order to become a Super Saiyan, one’s body must contain something called ‘S-Cells.’ Once these S-Cells reach a certain amount, a trigger such as anger will explosively increase the S-Cells and cause a change in the body: that’s Super Saiyan.”

In order to increase these S-Cells, one must learn how to tune in with the inner self. Toriyama added:

Having a gentle spirit is the best way to increase one’s S-Cells, but most Saiyans have trouble with this, which I think is why no Super Saiyans appeared for such a long time and they became the stuff of legend.”

Indeed, what made it more remarkable is the fact that it was Goku’s first time to reach Super Saiyan.


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The Importance Of Goku’s Transformation in Dragon Ball Z

In a Reddit post, a fan named Omegaxis1 explained the significance of Goku’s Super Saiyan transformation in Dragon Ball Z. The user pondered on Krillin’s death and its impact on Goku, which awakened the dormant spirit in him. He postulated that it was because Goku never witnessed the death of a friend before. It was right then and there that “Goku witnessed how powerless he was to prevent his best friend from being killed right in front of him,” the fan wrote.

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Fan theorizes about Goku’s transformation in Dragon Ball Z

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Toriyama’s explanation corroborated the fan’s account. The fury in Goku triggered the S-Cells in his body, combined with his incredible powers and love for his friend.

Young viewers must have been in awe upon witnessing this memorable Dragon Ball Z scene on television. After all, Goku finally reaches beyond his training’s limits, and the transformation yields fifty times increase in power and strength. That scene unlocks a core memory amongst fans who saw it firsthand when the episode aired 22 years ago!

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Written by Ariane Cruz

Articles Published: 2045

Ariane Cruz, Senior Content Writer. She has been contributing articles for FandomWire since 2021, mostly covering stories about geek pop culture. With a degree in Communication Arts, she has an in-depth knowledge of print and broadcast journalism. Her other works can also be seen on Screen Rant and CBR.