At last! My task comes to an end!
Gohan VS Goku
Last time, we went over the final battle of the Buu Saga. All of our Saiyan heroes banded together and managed to defeat the series final big bad villain. However, the story isn’t over yet. Gohan still has one final challenge to overcome: Goku. And unlike Buu, he can’t rely on anyone for this one.
I’m doing this for one important reason. When DBZ started, it was immediately made clear what the story was about: a father and a son. The relationship between Gohan and Goku was at the center of every story. This was the main reason the Buu saga failed. The story stopped being about a father and a son and just became that of a father. It completely fell apart, losing track of what it was originally about!
The story was about Gohan taking up Goku’s mantle. That was why the ending of the Cell saga was so good! But if we must make another arc after that, I don’t want to see it as a struggle. I want to see it as an opportunity. One to wrap up the story the same way that it started: with a father and a son.
Shortly after Buu’s destruction, the Tenkaichi Budokai, which had been put on hold due to Majin Vegeta’s rampage, is back on track! However, we’re on the fast track towards the grand finals! Krillin steps down, fully understanding what’s about to happen. Meanwhile, Mr. Satan has decided to step down as well, stating that it wouldn’t be fair for the man who killed Majin Buu to participate and that he wants other fighters to have the spotlight. With that, only two fighters remain: Son Gohan and Son Goku.
This fight would be pure fanservice. Gohan and Goku start off fighting in their base forms, quickly testing each other’s skills. Then Goku, grinning with excitement, takes the initiative and transforms into a Super Saiyan. Gohan struggles against the form for a moment before transforming himself. Then, eager to keep up his momentum, he goes Super Saiyan 2, though his father quickly transforms after him. After another brutal back-and-forth, Goku decides to stop messing around and transforms into a Super Saiyan 3. Gohan, unable to achieve that form, taps into his full power, achieving his Unleashed form.
With both our fighters fully powered up, the grand finale begins! And there’s only one song that could possibly fit for a moment like this: Cha La Head Cha La! Because what could be more anime than the grand finale being set to the opening song?!
Now in their final forms with the best song playing, the final clash is intense, ramping up more and more as the song does so. Then, just as the song reaches its climax, both fighters fly high into the air and charge up their final attack. From the crowd below, all they can hear are two voices screaming the familiar chant of the Kamehameha!
Come on. You think I wouldn’t put father and son up against each other in a Kamehameha? In Dragon Ball?
The following beam struggle isn’t the longest in the series. But it is the most intense. Both Goku and Gohan, grinning like the Saiyan idiots they are, put every last bit of power into their respective attacks. It all seems evenly matched. Then, with one final, ear-splitting scream, a brilliant flash of light consumes the arena.
A long moment of silence passes. The arena is filled with light and smoke, making it impossible to tell who won. Then, as the view slowly becomes clear, the results are revealed. Gohan, back in his base form, stands in the arena, exhausted and drenched in sweat. Goku, also back in his base form, is laying face down outside of the arena. Jaw hanging, the announcer shouts “CONTESTANT GOKU HAS FALLEN OUT OF THE RING!! THE WINNER IS CONTESTANT GOHAN!!”
Beaming, Gohan leaps into the air, celebrating his victory in a moment much like Goku’s win at the end of the original Dragon Ball. Goku gets back on his feet with a little help from Goten (why not?). Then, as the audience is cheering and clapping, Goku has one last heart-to-heart with his two sons. As they quiet down, he gives one last farewell to all his friends and family. With one last ‘See ya later!’, Goku returns to the Other World.
Which is the last time in my version of the story that we ever see Goku. His story was wonderful. And now it is finally, truly over.
But there’s one story that we still need to wrap up.
The Ending of Dragon Ball Z
That’s right! I’m going there!
The original ending of DBZ is an odd one. I hesitate to call it bad; it’s a cute, fairly satisfying conclusion to Goku’s story. The problem is that it completely threw out everything that DBZ had been building up to! Gohan had been completely tossed aside! Goten and Trunks may as well not have existed! The only other characters that even slightly mattered were Vegeta and Uub!
Luckily, this can be fairly easy to fix. So let’s do that!
Several years pass after Gohan’s final battle with Goku. He’s kept up with his training this time, becoming even more powerful than he was before. Videl and he are married, with a young daughter named Pan. Goten and Trunks have gotten much stronger under Vegeta’s tutelage (give the Prince something to do that fits his finished character arc), making Gotenks almost as powerful as Gohan. It’s implied that the Earth has enjoyed a time of peace, but that hasn’t stopped our heroes. They are powerful and prepared enough to keep the Earth safe, just as Goku had hoped for.
We rejoin them on the day of the next Tenkaichi Budokai. Videl is eager to join, as she is still a martial artist in our version (I refuse to commit character assassination just because they get pregnant, unlike Toriyama). However, much to her surprise, Gohan has decided to join. Confused, she questions him for his motivations; he hasn’t participated since the Buu saga. But Gohan assures her that he has a good reason, which she’ll understand when they arrive.
From here, the story goes much like it did in the original. Only instead of Goku, Gohan maintains the role of the main character. They qualify for the main tournament, where they come across Uub. Here, Gohan explains his motivations for participating. Off-screen, he got a call from Goku in the Other World, who told him that Majin Buu had been reincarnated as Uub. Now, Gohan is eager to test the boy’s power and hopefully take up a student.
Again, it mostly goes as it does as the original, only with Gohan as the main character. Gohan and Uub fights, Gohan pushes him to unleash his full power and finds himself excited as the fight comes to an end. He offers Uub a place in his home with Videl and Pan to train, telling him that he could train him to become the Earth’s next great defender. Thus, following in the footsteps of his father, Gohan himself becomes a teacher, ready to prepare the next generation of heroes.
Only he doesn’t abandon his family like Goku did. Because Gohan isn’t an asshole.
Believe it or not, changing the ending as little as I did actually does a lot. For one, Gohan essentially adopting Uub as a son works into the themes of Dragon Ball, especially Z. Like I said, the story up until Cell was that of a father and son. With this ending, we’ve managed to maintain that theme by turning Gohan himself into a father figure.
Not only that, but it leaves the audience with stuff to think about. How strong could Uub become? How will he and Pan interact? How will Trunks and Goten develop? How will Gohan becoming a father of two change him? These are questions that leave the audience hungry for more, giving them plenty to think about! Plus, it leaves it open for a continuation!
Which I won’t be doing. Because I do not want to talk about GT.
I’m finally done! I can talk about other anime again! Hooray!
Now, I want to make one thing clear. I still love the Buu saga! It has a ton of flaws, sure, but it’s still a fun story with tons of iconic moments! Toriyama was writing from the seam of his pants and he did a decent job. The only reason I had as easy a time as I did writing this series was that the original story was still good!
I’ll never say that my version is the superior version. Making a better version of the Buu saga was never my intention. It was just a fun little project that I put together. I had a ton of fun writing it and I hope you guys had fun reading it!
But not too much fun. If you did, you might start demanding more. And I do not want to touch either GT or Super. That would take far too long.