5 Point Discussions – Dragon Ball Super 124

by Sage Ashford

As Frieza and Gohan face off against the lightning-fast Dyspo, will someone new be eliminated this episode?  Remember, if you like this article and 5 Point Discussions, please share it on Facebook or Twitter! It really helps. And if you’ve got any comments or questions, please hit me up @SageShinigami.

1. I turned on Frieza as a character a long time ago. He’s rarely been useful during this tournament, as he’s spent the vast majority of it basically watching the fights play out until the numbers dwindled to down to a point where it was literally an all hands on deck situation.  You figure he would’ve waited until then in order to conserve his energy, but nope, things get down to the wire and he starts fighting with Dyspo and decides “Eh, beating you seems like more work than I signed up for to continue to exist, so tell ya what. I’ll let you win and you can wish me (and only me) back with the Super Dragon Balls.”

I was initially vehemently against Buu being the tenth member of the team, but now I’m honestly at a point where I think it would’ve been better. Buu’s an idiot, and vastly weaker than Frieza, thus he would’ve gotten knocked out of the tournament much earlier…but at least he would’ve tried, y’know? Fortunately, Frieza’s attempt at suckering Dyspo into a deal fails, primarily because he didn’t do his research. Dyspo spent the last 40+ episodes saying he’s all about justice, so when Frieza tried to betray his team…

I’m not sure how this wasn’t the only response he would’ve expected.

2. How DBZ has been for fans since the very first fight:

Once Frieza’s turned down, he immediately goes into Golden Form to put an end to Dyspo.  Presumably, afterwards he would’ve approached Toppo (which would’ve gone even worse), but…something strange happens. Despite seeing what we thought was the limit to Dyspo’s abilities when he was fighting Hit, Dyspo experiences some kind of absurd speed boost that leads to him utterly dominating Frieza. You can’t hit what you can’t touch, and Dyspo becomes literally impossible to hit because he can’t even be seen…even by Zen-Oh, somehow.

3. If you haven’t heard, Dragon Ball Super is coming to an end with the ending of this arc.  Toei has an entire block to itself on the channel Super airs on in Japan, and Super lost its spot to upcoming anime Gegege no Kitaro. Presumably, a big part of this is how far the anime has somehow superseded the manga. It isn’t a direct adaptation, but an outline is given to the anime based on what the manga’s going to do next. At this point, the monthly Super manga is just starting the Tournament of Power. Ultimately, Toriyama can’t do work on this, the film that’s coming out in December, and keep working so far ahead so Super’s coming to a close.

Knowing that, the repetition in the fight scenes this week becomes much more disappointing. I’m thinking it was known ahead of time things were ending, and so the quality of fight scenes should have been raised to display that…but instead a pretty important episode spends much of its time recycling the same shots. It’s not the worst thing that could happen, but it’s still disappointing.

4. Despite animation issues, this episode on the whole was pretty enjoyable from a plot perspective. There are a lot of long-time Gohan fans complaining about its ending, but I actually found it pretty solid. Dyspo’s hidden technique allows him to move several times faster than Freiza can keep up with, so he winds up being beaten badly enough for Gohan to step in. When that happens, the two of them invent a technique that they think can hold Dyspo down: Frieza covered the field in high-density electric beams while Gohan engaged in a brawling match with the light-speed warrior.

It’s a solid plan, demonstrating Gohan’s intelligence as a warrior and how far he’s come since the start of Dragon Ball Super, having turned into a warrior willing to risk large amounts of pain in order to defeat this opponent. It’s a far cry from when he was being embarrassed by a teleporter…and not even in the same universe as when he battled against Frieza in the second arc of this story.

Unfortunately, Frieza can’t hold the energy long enough and winds up dropping the energy beams, leaving Dyspo free to zip about again…but Gohan makes the tough choice to get knocked out by holding Dyspo, sacrificing himself to bring the team closer to victory and guaranteeing a two-on-one bonus over Universe 11. I appreciate that Gohan won without a nonsensical power-up, using his intelligence over anything else to gain a decisive victory.  Everyone comes off looking great this episode, even Dyspo–who I’d thought was a clown after he got manhandled by Hit.

5. Next Episode: The tournament is reaching a critical moment, as six warriors (and six minutes!) remain!  Will Goku and Vegeta be able to overcome the power of Jiren?  But wait!?  Toppo reveals an even greater level of power himself!  The man closest to becoming a god of destruction is about to finally let loose!

I’m mostly convinced at this point that Toppo and Jiren are going to lose, if only because few shows will take a creative chance to end the series with their characters having lost their last battle. It’s not unheard of (Yu Yu Hakusho), but it’s incredibly uncommon. Still, Toppo’s going to unveil a new level of power and that just makes me wonder: just how much further can Universe 7 go? Jiren barely feels like he’s trying and now his partner’s got a level up to unveil?  Maybe things will end with a draw?

Dragon Ball Super is available for streaming on Crunchyroll and Funimation.