Anime, Dragon Ball

Fixing Dragon Ball Z’s Buu Saga (Part 4)

The Battle on Earth

Alright. This is where my changes get substantial!

Last week, the stage was set for the battle with Buu. Gohan is training on the Land of the Kais, conquering his inner demons to unlock his true power. Meanwhile, Goten and Trunks have merged into Gotenks to face Buu; unfortunately, Goten’s hunger for revenge and Trunks’ Vegeta-like ego have caused a mental clash between them, destabilizing the fusion. Worse yet, Super Buu is far stronger than the original Buu, making him a truly dangerous threat for even our super-powered heroes.

Let’s start with Gohan’s plot thread. As he meditates, undergoing the Old Kai’s ritual, he begins to see images of the past. He witnesses the adventures of Bardock, his Saiyan grandfather, as he slaughters thousands while working for Freeza with a smile on his face. He also sees visions of the Ox King during his training under Master Roshi with Grandpa Gohan, which are far more peaceful and joyous. This further solidifies Gohan’s subconscious fear of his Saiyan heritage; he is afraid of the history of genocide that his father, and therefore he, comes from.

However, as the visions continue, Gohan sees a different side to each of them. He witnesses Bardock stand up against Freeza to defend his home and people, watching as he’s consumed by the flames and killed honorably. He also sees the Ox King during his darkest days, slaughtering anyone who came close to his treasure before Goku came and made him change his ways. As he watches, Gohan comes to a realization: both his human and Saiyan heritage is steeped in blood. However, neither were ever truly monsters. They were people living their lives.

Thus, Gohan makes peace with his inner demons. He accepts his Saiyan heritage as a part of him. With this acceptance, he releases the subconscious barrier keeping him from achieving the same dizzying heights that his father’s been able to reach. Gohan returns to his body and stands up. The ritual is complete. His full, unrestricted power is unleashed.

I hope you find that a bit more satisfying than what we got in the original.

His newfound strength is made immediately obvious. Not only are the Kais unsurprisingly shocked, but even Goku, who has previously been shown to have long surpassed Gohan, is surprised. The Old Kai is unsure as to how strong Gohan just became. But he’s confident that he can destroy Buu.

Which is lucky. Because back on Earth, the battle is not going well.

While this is all happening, the battle between Buu and Gotenks rages on. Just like in the original, Piccolo guides Buu to the Time Chamber to fight Gotenks. Unlike the original, however, they abide by the ‘two at a time’ rule established in the Cell Saga. He only allows Buu in after the boys merge (the door only opens when they fuse or something; it doesn’t matter). After Buu enters, Piccolo slams the door and evacuates the Lookout. Gathering everyone together, he goes to collect the only other living human: Mr. Satan.

Thus, the battle begins. Gotenks and Buu are evenly matched. the fight rapidly escalates, to the point that both combatants break out of the chamber and emerge back on Earth. Gotenks goes Super Saiyan 3, as both boys remember the sensation when they sensed Goku do it, while Buu stops holding back and fights with all his strength. Even still, it seems that Gotenks is about to win. Better yet, they still have most of the time left in the fusion!

Or at least they would. But the mental divide between the two boys severely cuts their time down. Thus, a mere five minutes after the fight starts, Gotenks splits off into Goten and Trunks.

Buu freezes when he sees this. He demands that the boys fuse again, screaming like a spoiled child that he wants to fight the strong one. Panicked, both Goten and Trunks try to fuse again. But due to the lack of harmony between them, they can’t even fuse again. The technique has become impossible for them to perform.

Realizing that they can’t fuse, Goten completely snaps. His pent-up rage over the loss of his family explodes. Trunks, much in the vein of his father, tells Goten to back off and let him kill Buu. But the youngest son of Goku isn’t having it; he turns Super Saiyan and charges Buu down alone without so much as a word.

Trunks is hesitant. He realizes that Goten doesn’t stand a chance alone. But the warrior’s honor and pride instilled in him by his father holds him back. Even when Goten is brutalized by Buu, he still holds himself back. He doesn’t know what to do. He’s lost, confused, and his emotions are boiling over.

Then, when Buu goes in for the kill, Trunks puts his father’s teachings aside. In a moment much like his time-traveling counterpart, he rushes in to protect his friend, catching Buu off-guard. In the brief moment he bought them, he yells at Goten to fuse with him again. But even with his injuries, the furious Goten refuses to give up or listen to reason.

Seeing this, Buu becomes even more furious. He just wants to fight a strong opponent. Why should he have to put up with bickering children? Why couldn’t they just fuse and give him the fight he deserves? Then he gets an idea. Sensing the distant Ki of all the surviving characters, who fled the Lookout, Buu decides to give the two boys some extra motivation. He heads over to them and starts picking them off, one by one, to anger the two Saiyans.

At this point, Gohan finally finishes his training. He has a heartfelt farewell with Goku, who promises to come back and test him once Buu is dead, and he heads to Earth with Kibito. There, he asks for the familiar Turtle Hermit uniform, symbolizing him taking up his father’s legacy completely (although he keeps Piccolo’s symbol on the back, to honor his first teacher). Then, desperate to save as many of his friends as possible, Gohan rushes to stop Buu.

Goten and Trunks arrive first. By the time they arrive, Buu has already slaughtered almost everyone. Only Piccolo, Dende, Videl, and Mr. Satan (whom Buu can’t seem to touch) remain. Upon seeing the carnage, both boys desperately try to fuse once again. But their emotional distress once again keeps the technique from working. All hope seems lost.

Then, in dramatic fashion, Gohan arrives.

Emotions are high in this scene. Goten, Dende, and Videl are overjoyed to see him, all being driven to tears (Piccolo is the same but without the tears). Trunks is torn apart by the loss of his mother, finally settling into the same mindset that Goten’s been in for the last while. Mr. Satan is just plain terrified and confused. Buu, sensing Gohan’s power, is extremely excited.

Then there’s Gohan himself. Having sensed the deaths of many of his friends on his way there, he’s already become furious. But upon seeing the state Videl and Goten are in, he completely snaps. Then, with blazing fury in his eyes, he drops his coolest line in the Buu saga: “Fight you? No. I’m here to kill you.”

What? Did you think that I wasn’t going to keep that in there?

With that, the next battle begins. Gohan VS Super Buu. The clash between them is incredibly intense. Gohan has the edge power-wise, but Buu has unlimited healing and stamina, evening the playing field. Initially, it seems that the fight could go either way. But as the match continues, it’s clear that the balance is beginning to sway into Buu’s favor. Gohan, as strong as he is, lacks the power and stamina to put the pink genocide machine down for good.

Seeing this, the emotionally distraught Saiyan children band together. They try desperately to fuse again, but they can’t do it. Luckily, they have Piccolo and Dende to help them. Dende comforts them, reassuring them that the Dragon Balls can be used to restore everyone back to life. Piccolo, being the stern mentor, guides them to properly executing the technique again, ironing out the mistakes in their form. After the two children finally regain control over their emotions, they fuse once again. Gotenks is reborn and eager to fight.

And not a moment too soon. Gohan, while he can still keep up, is starting to get exhausted. So, when Gotenks rushes in to help, the fight immediately takes a turn in our hero’s favor. With their insane powers combined, they both put Buu against the wall. Together, they strike the monster with all their might.

Then, in a moment reminiscent of Cell, Buu begins to change. His form twists and contorts, particularly in the mouth region. He spits out a small pink bullet, which then transforms into the original fat, baby-like Majin Buu (much to the delight of Mr. Satan). With a scream, Super Buu’s form begins to completely melt away.

But rather than returning back to Evil Buu, his transformation goes a step further. In his time with Fat Buu inside him, Evil Buu has unlocked the original power that terrorized the universe. Thus, once the smoke clears, it isn’t the gray Evil Buu that greets our heroes. It is the pint-sized pink terror: Kid Buu.

We cut to the Other World, where Goku and the Supreme Kais watch the action unfold. Goku is confused and amused by Buu’s new transformation. Supreme Kai, on the other hand, is terrified. He explains that this was Buu’s original form, as well as his most powerful. He is afraid that, even as they are now, Gohan and Gotenks may not stand a chance.

Gohan, seeing Buu’s new transformation, gets Cell flashbacks. He recalls how his hesitation then led to the death of his father. Eager to prevent another similar tragedy from happening to his brother, his friends, or Videl, Gohan rushes forward to finish the job. Logically, this new Buu must be weaker, right? That’s how it was with Cell!

Unfortunately, this is where Gohan makes a critical error. He lowers his guard completely as he attacks, overconfident in his abilities and underestimating his opponent. Thus, in that moment of weakness, he’s caught off-guard by Buu’s attack, which is far more powerful than anything he’s experienced yet. The exhausted Gohan goes down immediately.

Gotenks, still full of energy and eager to fight, rushes in to fight Buu. However, the tide has completely changed. Before, Buu and Gotenks were evenly matched, for the most part, separated only by stamina. Now? Buu has the upper hand by a longshot. All Gotenks manages to achieve is buying Piccolo, Dende, Videl, and Mr. Satan the necessary time to pull Gohan to safety.

Then things get even worse. Buu knocks Gotenks a huge distance away, closing the gap between them and the others. Then, in a dramatic moment of terror, the fusion between the boys ends again. Goten and Trunks are too exhausted to fuse again, Gohan is out of commission, and no one else has the strength to fight Buu.

Buu, seeing that the fight is over, charges up a massive blast and aims it straight at the Earth. Piccolo desperately tries to find a way out, but he can’t find anything. As the ball of death descends, he and the others fall into despair. All seems lost.

Then Goku and the Supreme Kai appear. Using their Instant Transmission, they pull everyone away from Earth and over to the Land of the Kais. Sadly, the Earth couldn’t survive the blast. But Buu sure did.

Thus, the stage is set for the grand finale. Out of all our cast, only Gohan, Goten, Trunks, Piccolo, Dende, Videl, and Mr. Satan remain. With the fight now in Other World, Goku is willing to lend his sons his aide to protect the universe. But with Buu being more powerful than ever, things aren’t looking good. Luckily, Goku has a plan: an all-out Saiyan brawl. But first, he needs to finish their team. Thus, with Instant Transmission, he goes to grab their last necessary warrior.

Which is where we’ll pick up next week. Get ready. Because that one is going to be a fucking doozy!

This segment of the original story was, in my opinion, where the Buu saga completely fell apart. For one, Buu started absorbing characters and transformed into ‘Perfect Cell but pink’, which was super bland and boring. Worse yet, Gohan had the main character role snatched away from him, which forced Goku back into the spotlight. The fusion technique, Gohan’s training, all the stuff with Videl, everything that we got up to that point was completely thrown out the window!

I refuse to let that happen in our version! Gohan is still our main hero! Gotenks will be crucial to Buu’s defeat! Gohan and Videl’s relationship will be important to Gohan’s growth! All those brilliant threads that Toriyama dropped will be picked up and stitched back together!

Still, I promised to change as little as possible. Which means that there are still things that I need to include. Two very important, iconic things: Vegito and the Spirit Bomb. Both of which I need to include while keeping Gohan as the main character.

Holy shit, this is going to be hard!

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