“Your greatest weakness can become your greatest strength.”
In anime, characters struggle with inner demons or physical weaknesses that make them feel insecure and prevent them from achieving goals. Yet when these characters overcome their adversity, they can finally be able to express who they are or in other words, “Free to be Me.”
To start off this blog tour month, I will be talking about finding strength in weakness by using the knowledge of Dragon Ball Z. Specially, I will be only focusing on one character because the character I have chosen is something that I felt like is worth talking about. It’s not Goku but this character had a bumpy start in the beginning of Dragon Ball Z.
I will try to keep the spoilers a minimum but I will be jumping around in the anime.
Strength: Physical and Mental
Before we begin, let’s talk about strength. The word strength can be both physical and mental. In physical strength, people uses their body to perform tasks like carrying luggage or moving objects around. Mental strength is different because it’s not something you can train by touch. Physical strength training requires people to practice by touching and repetition like lifting weights or working out in breathing with cardio training in treadmills, something you would expect from a gym or workout facility. Mental strength is different because it’s not about touching something, it’s more about focusing on fear or personal thoughts such as fear of heights or fighting. However, just like physical, it can be trained. If the person seeking mental training wants to be able live life to the fullest, they must be prepare to face their fears. It’s either fight it or just run away, this could also be the fight or flight response. Before I get sidetracked and start acting like PE teacher, onward to the blog tour!
Who’s the Topic Character?
You might be wondering, “if the topic character is not Goku, then who is it?” Drum roll please!
*drum roll* *drum roll* *drum roll*
It’s… his first son, Son Gohan!
Personally, I feel Gohan is the best representation of the topic because the struggles he goes through can relatable (if you have been through his life, I will be surprised).
Gohan – Peter Parker of Dragon Ball Z
When Dragon Ball Z first started, fans were introduced to Goku’s son, Son Gohan. I am not sure if the information was true but I heard the anime focuses on both Goku and Gohan in a parallel story. This is evident when watching the Saiyan and Namek Saga. Anyway, when we meet Gohan, he wasn’t like Goku where he could train and fight like the original Dragon Ball. Instead, Chi-Chi (Goku’s wife) wanted Gohan to focus on studying for school. This caused him be sheltered.
However, this anime also introduced the first villain, Saiyan who is Goku’s older brother named Raditz. Radtiz kidnaps Gohan and this causes Goku to team up with his first rival Piccolo to save him.
Gohan – From Bruce Banner to Hulk
After the fight with Raditz, Piccolo saw that Gohan had some hidden power inside them that helped save Goku and him. Based on his logic, Gohan can trigger his Saiyan powers from angry or fear emotions which causes his him to do a series headbutt or energy blast. To prepare for the upcoming Saiyans, Piccolo trains this sheltered boy and teach him to fight like his father and him. It was not easy since he had to survive on his own against Piccolo and dinosaurs.
During the fight with the Saiyans, Gohan was still too scared to fight and he was unable to help Piccolo and the others. Whenever, Gohan does use his emotions to fight back, he only gets strong for a brief moment before he exhausts himself and leaving him vulnerable.
In the Namek Saga, Gohan and Krillin meets the Grand Elder of the Namekians named Guru and gets his powers awakened to new heights. This makes them stronger but unfortunately, it doesn’t help that much when they face the Ginyu Force and Frieza. Skipping ahead to fighting Frieza (in his Second Form), after believing Krillin died (the first time), Gohan once again gets angery and fights Frieza and does some major damage on him. This happens again when Piccolo is pinned down from Frieza (Third Form) and Gohan jumps into take on the alien overlord. Even though Gohan wasn’t strong enough to kill Frieza, his emotions got the best of him and causes to fight without thinking.
In these two Sagas, we see that Gohan can fight but he has yet to control himself.
Gohan – Captain America
In the Cell Saga, Goku decides to train Gohan and help him become a Super Saiyan and also prep him for the upcoming Cell Games, a tournament where fighters from all over the world fight against Cell and save the world. Gohan was able to become Super Saiyan but strange enough is that Goku sends him to fight against Cell and convinced him that Gohan is stronger than him. During the fight, Gohan tells Cell that the reason why Goku sent him to fight because whenever he gets angry, he gets strong. To test that, Cell creates mini versions of himself called Cell Jrs. and makes them fight against Z-Warriors in order to make Gohan mad. Gohan tries to hold back his emotions and doesn’t want to fight but thanks to a short talk with the destroyed Android 16, he changed. In his last speech, 16 tells Gohan that even though he is a gentle person who refuses to fight, he needs to let go and fight. Fighting doesn’t always have to be a senseless match but it can be a good thing. To save life, you need to fight for the life and it’s not a sin to fight for a right cause.
After Cell destroyed Android 16, this was the final straw and Gohan let go all of his emotions and learn to transform into Super Saiyan 2. With this form, Gohan killed all the Cell Jrs. and overpowered Cell. By the time the Cell Saga ends, Gohan gained some new powers and in which he uses it to defend and safe the Earth without Goku alive.
Dragon Ball Z is more than just an anime where you watch people fight each other in high-speed combat, Dragon Ball Z shows the audience what happens when you are faced an against an obstacle and having to deal with the stress of situation. Unlike Gokue, Gohan is a Saiyan with real life human traits and reasoning, such as the fear of fighting and trying to resolve his emotions. Just like humans, Gohan starts off being afraid of new challenges and forces to act without thinking. However, thanks to listening to wisdom and doing intense training, Gohan is able to control his emotions and justify his actions and fight. At first, he struggled on controlling his emotions and causes him to exhaust himself but after learning about control, he became a great threat on enemies like Cell.
How can this apply to us? We may not have bad guys like Cell where they can destroy Earth but we do have enemies where they think they can bully you anytime. We could actually fight back but going back to the topic, some of us have weakness in which we can’t stand for ourselves. If you read in the Bible in the book of Exodus, in chapter 3 and 4, Moses talks to God in which He appeared as a Burning Bush. God told Moses to tell the Pharoah of Egypt to let His people go in Egypt. Moses tells God he can’t do it because no one will believe him and he can not speak properly. Regardless, God told him that he will always be there for him and will give him wisdom. Thanks to God, Moses set free his enslaved brothers and sisters and escaped from the Pharaoh clutches. The point is this, we may start off with a weakness or more but if we can learn to train it or break it, we can use it and make our strength.
Anyway, sorry for rambling on in this blog tour. I hope you guys enjoyed this post as much as you did with my posts. The next person for the tour is Pink from Pinky’s Place.
So long Z-warrior!