As the tournament’s entrants start to clear out, Universe 4 makes its move by sending its strongest warrior Jiren against Universe 7’s Goku!
There was no episode last week while Toei decided to give us two episodes back-to-back this week, so we’re doubling up on this and so 5 Point Discussions is actually 10, covering 109 and then 110. Don’t say I never did anything for you. (Kidding.) Remember, if you enjoy 5 Points Discussion please share it on Facebook and Twitter. And if you’ve got questions, comments, or just want to tell me how terrible/awesome a job I’m doing, please hit me up @SageShinigami on Twitter.
1. Episode 109 opens with Goku facing down Ribrianne, the “Love Warrior” and ace soldier of Universe 2. It’s a joke fight, and we know it’s a joke fight because Goku can’t even be bothered to go Super Saiyan for it. Not 2, 3, or even Red–nope, he doesn’t even find her worth regular Super Saiyan. No wonder so many people call him a villain–he started this tournament where everyone’s fighting for their lives and he can’t be assed to take it seriously. Still, at least Ribrianne’s all in. She powers up via the help of her friends (which hilariously involves using the glow sticks you’d normally find at an idol concert) to give herself bright, glowing wings. Like this, she starts to overpower Goku…except not really. She blasts him into the ground, leaving him in a heart-shaped crater…and then Goku goes Super Saiyan Blue for like, half a second and immediately knocks her out. Because Goku’s only capable of taking things seriously if he’s about to die.
2. Right before Ribrianne started knocking Goku around, she reminded us of the second benefit to winning the tournament (besides NOT having your universe erased): access to the Super Dragon Balls. Asking Goku what he’d wish for, he ponders giving the wish to Chi Chi, his sons, or being selfish and just wishing to meet someone stronger than anyone he’s ever met before. I maintain that they’ll eventually use the Super Dragon Balls to undo this mess, but it’s always “great” to have a reminder that even though he saves the world a lot, Goku’s still a terrible father and husband.
3. Midway through 109, Jiren finally decides to take the stage and get serious. It’s unsettling that he waited so long, but when you realize he’s basically working directly under the command of U4’s god of destruction it makes a little more sense. He challenges Goku because he’s one of the most obviously strong people left in the tournament, and of course Goku is eager to face him down.
…So eager, he tries to fight Jiren in base form. I’d be mad, but this was actually my favorite part of the fight. The entire tournament they’ve shown Goku screwing around under the guise of “not wasting energy”, but that point goes out the window since even when he’s obviously outclassed he usually stays in his weaker forms for presumably no other reason than “to make things exciting”. Remember, Goku struggled with Kale once she went into berserker mode while Jiren just one-shotted her into unconsciousness. That’s a person you should want to take serious from the second you start fighting, so it was actually cathartic to see Jiren flat-out ignore Goku until he decided to get serious.
4. Eventually, this leads to Goku going into Super Saiyan Blue KaioKen x 20. he anime is addicted to this foolishness, wherein Goku (already in Super Saiyan form) will use Kaioken in a close battle and either barely win or come up short somehow. Last time he was facing Hit and used Kaioken times ten, this time it’s times twenty. Both times it’s basically taking a Power Pole to the concept of power scaling and beating it stupid. Even slight differences in early Dragon Ball Z was often the difference between winning and being stomped. Now twenty times increases don’t seem to mean much at all. I do appreciate the call-back that even talented fighters can’t tell when Goku’s maxing himself out. Krillin seemed so sure that Goku had Kaioken left, only for Beerus to point out he’d been using it almost since the beginning, and was still catching one of the most epic beatdowns we’ve seen since Super started.
5. By the end of episode 109, Goku’s left with using his favorite technique–the Spirit Bomb. The biggest problem I had with this was that supposedly the Spirit Bomb can only work on evil beings, and as far as we know Jiren isn’t evil at all. I wanted to be annoyed by how Goku was just given the time to collect the energy by Jiren, but that this was a part of Jiren’s plan all along. Crushing someone that’s possibly the second strongest person on the field while they’re at their absolute best destroys everyone else’s confidence and makes them easy to clean up afterwards.
Plus, Jiren’s overwhelming power means he had no reason to doubt himself to begin with. In the end, despite help from everyone (except Vegeta) in his Universe, Jiren still chucks Goku’s Spirit Bomb right back at him, leaving him swallowed up by the blast after his ability to fight back starts to run out.
6. In episode 110, we learn that the tournament’s rules are basically worthless. After Goku is supposedly vaporized by the Spirit Bomb, Champa points out that should be grounds to disqualify Jiren, only for people to suggest that since it was Goku’s attack, he technically destroyed himself. The Grand Priest agrees, making the rules all but useless. You can’t fly…unless you’ve got wings. You can’t use weapons…unless it looks cool. No interfering with the tournament once you’re outside…unless it looks cool. Basically, there’s some kind of stupid caveat to every rule they’ve had, just so the plot can keep rolling. Should’ve just had no rules to begin with.
7. Dragon Ball Super (and Z for that matter) should just be renamed “The Endless Chances of Son Goku”. He comes back a few minutes into the episode renewed, with a new form that currently has no name and we barely even understand where it came from. I think the reason I’m always excited to see someone kick the crap out of Goku is because somehow no one else ever seems to matter on this show. It’s DBZ, there’s little to no character development and the plots are always brick obvious. Until Super the powers were rarely super creative, but at least they could let someone else have their moment to shine. But nope, Goku’s back with greyish-silver eyes after nearly dying and somehow he’s able to make Jiren put in work for the first time…
8. We’re not really sure how it happened, but the Spirit Bomb seems to have activated something in Goku briefly known as Ultra Instinct. It’s a technique that appears to grant Goku the ability to attack with frightening accuracy, and counter-attack with powerful blows that hit their mark–it seems like a souped-up version of Naruto’s Byakugan and the Sharingan mixed together. The way the gods of destruction react, it appears to be something that largely divine beings have. It makes sense though–he’s spent so much time training with Beerus and Whis that he could easily have been unconsciously learning this the entire time, and it was only this moment that finally brought it to the forefront.
Unfortunately, he gained this ability just as he was almost out of stamina, and Jiren doesn’t look to be anyone that can be beaten with a technique that was learned literally seconds ago. It gets Jiren to acknowledge Goku, but that’s all it does–a single energy blast takes Goku out. Which might be a problem for…reasons.
9. …Reasons like having Freiza kidnap Goku and trying to kill him now that he’s completely defenseless! At least, that’s what they want us to think. In reality I’m fairly sure if Freiza killed Goku he’d just get erased instantly so more likely he’s just going to offer his energy to Goku the same way Goku helped him on Namek. A great cliffhanger to end on, and a nice callback for what was basically the best two episodes Super’s had since the series started.
10. Next Episode: With Jiren distracted dealing with Goku, Hit decides to make his move! But will the time-stopping assassin be capable of defeating the being stronger than a God of Destruction? Find out on the next episode of Dragon Ball Super…
Seriously though, the anime version of Hit bugs me to no end–who just gets to become stronger because “I’ve never needed to before”? I’m sincerely hoping Hit gets put down the same way Goku did, but Hit’s become something of a dark horse in terms of popularity and generally characters get one or two episodes of “invincibility” before it starts to wear off unless they’re the arc villain. It’s entirely possible they could wind up kicking each other from the tournament.
Dragon Ball Super is available for streaming on Crunchyroll.