The Revival of Majin Buu
From here, the story goes a lot like it did in the original. The revived Buu makes quick work of Dabura, turning him into a cookie, then annihilates Gohan and Supreme Kai. Goku halts his fight with Vegeta to go help, to which Vegeta responds by knocking him out and going on his own. He has his parting words with Trunks, who came with Goten when they sensed the insane power, and blows himself up to try and stop Buu. Piccolo and Krillin take the rest of the gang to the Lookout while Kibito takes the injured Supreme Kai and Gohan back to the Realm of the Kais.
After waking up, Goku makes his way to the Lookout, where he reveals that he isn’t strong enough to kill Buu. However, he knows a technique that can give them the edge. Unfortunately, he can’t do it alone, and the only ones who could help him, Gohan and Vegeta, are both thought to be dead. Piccolo suggests teaching it to Goten and Trunks, which Goku agrees to do. Trunks and Goten agree to learn, driven by anger over the loss of their father and brother respectively. Thus, Goku starts teaching them how to use the Fusion technique.
Unfortunately, he barely has time to demonstrate one time. Majin Buu is set to attack West City by Babidi’s command, which will result in them losing the Dragon Radar. Goku sends Trunks to go get it while he distracts Buu. Thus, the stage is set for the reveal of Goku’s newest transformation.
This is one of the biggest problems in the Buu saga. Super Saiyan 3 comes out of absolutely nowhere, which makes it feel lame and unsatisfying. Especially when you compare it to Super Saiyan and SS2, both of which had a ton of buildup before their reveal. Luckily, I’ve already set the stage for a more satisfying reveal!
Remember, Goku’s original purpose in coming back to life was to test Gohan. He reveals in his conversation with Babidi and Buu that he wanted to save this for his fight with his son, but he now has no choice but to use it. Thus, we finally end the mystery behind Goku’s new strength through a dramatic reveal: a transformation beyond SS2! Super Saiyan 3!
I’ll admit it’s not perfect. But some buildup is better than none!
Once again, we’re following the original again for a while. An exhausted Goku is sent back to Other World early, leaving Piccolo to train Goten and Trunks. Upon his return, he discovers Gohan at the World of the Kais, training to pull the Z-Sword and increase his powers. However, I would change one little thing. To help him out, Goku once again takes up the role of teacher and assists Gohan in his training, in the hope that Gohan can once again surpass him.
Meanwhile, Buu, having killed Babidi after his battle with Goku, does his own thing for a little while. He befriends Mr. Satan and becomes good through his guidance. Unfortunately, a triggering event sends Buu into a rage, which divides him in two: the original Buu and the gray Evil Buu. Evil Buu then absorbs the old Buu, becoming Super Buu.
Which is the second-to-last time Buu will ever transform. But we’ll get to that.
Back at the Lookout, Piccolo pressures Goten and Trunks to quickly master the Fusion technique. After they do so, he demands that they do it as Super Saiyans. Which is where I’ll implement another change. At this point, Goten admits that he can’t become a Super Saiyan, which serves as a major setback for their training. They quickly shift gears to try and get Goten up to speed. But no matter what they try, Goten just can’t transform.
Then, just like the original, Super Buu arrives. Piccolo tries to stall by letting him loose on the humans. In response, Buu uses his Human Extinction Attack or whatever it was called, wiping out everyone but Mr. Satan almost immediately. In a last-minute bid to stop him, Piccolo stalls while Krillin gets the boys into the Time Chamber.
Unfortunately, tragedy will strike on their way there. While Goten and Trunks are making their way towards the chamber, a furious Chi-Chi storms out to confront Buu for killing her son. He, unsurprisingly, makes quick work of her, turning her into chocolate before eating her whole. Then, just as the door to the chamber closes behind the boys, Goten senses his mother’s Ki completely disappear.
This is Goten’s lowest point. His brother and mother are gone. He’d only known his father for a day before he had to go. Everyone left on Earth is counting on him and he’s letting them down. He’s scared, furious, and feels totally alone. As all of these thoughts cloud his mind, driving him to tears, Goten snaps and transforms into a Super Saiyan.
This is probably one of my favorite changes. In the original, Goten could go Super Saiyan just because. There was no narrative or drama attached to earning the transformation, like there was for everyone else up to that point, excluding Kid Trunks. By doing this, we give Goten’s first transformation a little more oof than the none at all it had before. Plus, it’s a moment that does a lot for Goten as a character, making him feel alive rather than a boring blank slate.
Outside, a few minutes go by and Buu demands to see his opponent. With no other option, Piccolo leads him into the time chamber. There, he’s faced by a well-prepared Goten and Trunks. Unfortunately, not all is well with the boys.
In the original, the boys were very aloof and carefree when they first confronted Buu. It makes sense; they are kids, after all. But there’s not a lot of interesting drama in it. However, thanks to Goten’s transformation, we can create a little extra drama with the two kids. Trunks, also unlike the original, has a more Vegeta-like attitude about it; he looks forward to his battle with his father’s killer, eager to prove that he’s surpassed him. Goten, on the other hand, is driven entirely by fury and loneliness. Thus, things are still uncertain when Gotenks appears to fight Super Buu.
Meanwhile, Gohan’s training is concluded and he manages to rip out the Z-Sword. After doing so, he makes a big deal of feeling more powerful than ever before. He acquaints it to the Z-Sword, but Goku knows the truth. It was Gohan’s hard work and efforts in removing the sword that made him so strong, not the sword itself.
This is further proven when the sword immediately turns to dust, releasing the Elder Kai. Yes, I’m keeping this guy in there. Remember: I’m making as few changes as possible.
After telling everyone his story, the Elder Kai approaches Gohan with an offer to repay him for setting him free. He explains that he knows a special ritual that can unlock Gohan’s hidden potential, a process that could theoretically make Gohan even more powerful. However, in order to do so, Gohan must face his inner demons in order to settle his spirit and mind, which will allow them to work in perfect sync with the body.
Because that’s more interesting than having him sit there for a day until the Elder Kai is done making jokes. Plus, it makes a little more sense. Granted, it’s not by much. But if the characters have to get stronger, I’ll make sure that they have to earn it.
Thus, the stage is set for the dramatic clash. Gotenks is set to go, but there is a small division between the two boys that threatens the stability of the fusion. Gohan is getting prepared, but he may not be on time. All that remains is the battle itself.
Which we’ll get to in Part 4. Because that’s where the changes get really substantial!