FINALLY THE ROCK HAS COME BACK TO…Is how I wanted to start this post, but that excellent man has nothing to do with anime. Sooooo I’ll start with, Sorry for the long delay guys and girls, but I heard rumours a few months ago that the twitterverse was in a frenzy because apparently someone had a new transformation on Dragon Ball Super. This obviously meant that any typing of anime related things into YouTube would plunge one into that disgusting spoiler filled cesspool known as ‘suggested videos’. But now that I’ve finally watched that triumphant episode, I can continue in nerdy bliss, my fingers feel free like Mandela!
For this top 10 I decided that a Gif alone isn’t sufficient, so I’ve added a YouTube video link for extra sexcellence.
Link to the beginning of the list! From No.50
(Special mention) One Piece, Punk Hazard Arc – Because it was originally in the top 10 before THAT episode of DB Super.
Trafalgar Law Sword Slash Against Full Haki Vergo (4,4,5,5,3,4) = 25
How can you slash a man into a yoga pose?! #levels
Law vs Vergo
ITPO= 4, Defeating Vergo, an important lacky of Doflomingo, was a big deal. Not only did it show Doflomingo that Law wasn’t just about sideburns and surgery, but also that whatever he was planning, it was SERIOUS, and he had the skills to follow it through to the end. Although he did destroy the factory, it was really only the first move in a much larger chess game of doom.
ITCD= 4, Like I said, this showed what kind of biceps Law was really working with. Before this point you assumed he was strong because he was a war lord. However, he never looked very powerful in the fights/scuffles he had in this Arc thus far. But then he slices Vergo and all his ancestors in half with one sword swing?! This, after the show builds up the strength disparity between the two, and shows us full body haki for the first time. Like Drake said, after this -Nothing was the same. I guess recovering ones heart does A LOT.
Emotiveness = 5, It’s unlikely to see many HM not score full marks on this in the top ten. I loved Trafalgar Law’s character before this moment, but after this I wanted to splice him with Ronaldo, and make hairy samurai football surgeons to call my own.
Badassness = 5, HE SLICED A WHOLE MOUNTAIN IN HALF.
Animation = 3, Nothing special to report here, just a solid display of one being cut in half.
EOVMS = 4, This brilliant act of defiance sent shock waves through the criminal underground, and definitely got Doflomingo’s attention. So much so, that he RAN a transatlantic distance across the sea\air to confront Law. However we didn’t really see the full effects of this move until much later in the saga.
10 – One Piece, Dressrosa/Bird Cage Arc
Zoro’s Billion Fold World Technique vs Pika ( 4,5,5,4,3,4) = 25
ZORO FOR PRESIDENT!
Zoro’s Epic New Sword Slash
ITPO= 4, Narrowly misses out on scoring full points because this opponent although one of Doflomingos go too guys, was not very strong in the grand scheme of things, and if Zoro didn’t beat him, Luffy would have calmly erased him from the manga.
ITCD= 5, Zoro had teased us longer than a Las Vegas stripper with knee problems about his Haki abilities. But then, in literally a ‘billion’ moves he showed the true power of his ‘colour of arms’ – SPECTACULAR. Something that, adds further fuel to the speculation that he could be stronger than Luffy.
Emotiveness = 5, I’ve been a Zoro fan boy for the longest, and like how many Arsenal fans are closet Tottenham fans, I’ve been conflicted for a day and age about who I prefer between him and Luffy…Safe to say, that me running around my front room screaming ZORO at 1am is no understatement.
Badassness= 4, Flew through the air, in a full wedding suit to slice a mountain sized statue man with the realist shoulder pads into pieces. Using only three swords rotating at the speed of death.
Animation= 3, Good enough to get the job done, would of liked better, although maybe the opponent didn’t warrant such lavishness.
EOVMS= 4, It was the first time Pika realised that he was facing the baddest of the bad. He became very fearful without losing his belief in his chances of victory – idiot.
9 – Bleach, Soul Society Arc
Ichigo Using Bankai For The First Time (4,5,5,4.5,3.5,3) =25
After this…I went out clubbing, and almost got forcibly ejected from the venue for repeatedly screaming BANKAI in the cloakroom queue. JUST LOOK AT HIM – Black clothed excellence.
ITPO= 4, Without this new level of zanpakuto release Ichigo would not have been able to prevent Rukia’s execution, however, there is a hint throughout the arc that other captains weren’t completely on board with the execution and may have intervened at the very last-minute.
ITCD= 5, Any new ‘transformation’ is always important to a character’s development, especially one that places him at the table of the soul reaper elite. Not to mention also begins to further stimulate his hollow powers. The show simply couldn’t continue without it.
Emotiveness = 5, I’m sure no matter you favourite character, this moment would have tingled you to your core. As Ichigo at this point was my whole life – literally was in a relationship with on Facebook – I almost had a cardiac arrest.
Badassness = 4.5, The fact that he 1. had no right to wield such power, imagine a substitute teacher with the power to make you repeat the year. 2. had a bankai that was the complete opposite in stature to every other bankai seen thus far, like that one guy with the ipod nano among ipod classics. And 3. name this power Piercer of Heaven?!
Animation = 3.5, well choreographed, with the power up almost palpable. But not the bank busting animated scribbles of love one would wish for.
EOVMS = 3, Byakuya was startled briefly, but his composure is rated at 20/20 on football manager for a reason. Never letting this outrageous moment of protagonist insolence overwhelm him, he kept battling on with more and more determination and hilariously dismissive comments.
8 – Dragon Ball Super, Tournament of Power.
Ultra Instinct Goku (4.5, 5, 5, 4.5, 5,1) = 25
It’s too late in the night, and my stamina bar is too low for me to describe, the full effect this look had on my neurological pathways…Lets just say that I saw the face of God, and his eyes were silver.
Ultra Instinct Goku
ITPO= 4.5, THE ONLY reason this doesn’t get an omnipotent 5, is because the transformation was too short-lived to do what it appeared to be undoubtedly capable of – concluding this tournament.
ITCD= 5, I’m not going to insult anyone’s intelligence by explaining this.
Emotiveness = 5, ULTRA INSTINCT FFS
Badassness = 4.5, The plethora of nerdgasmic questions this transformation spewed out, is the only reason why; being sucked into a spirit bomb black hole, returning with your back to the world, silver eyes and unlimited instincts, doesn’t score full marks.
Animation = 5, DID YOU SEE THE EPISODE?!!
EOVMS = 1, Jiren, that grey, alien, four limbed mountain of fast twitch muscle fibres was unmoved…HOW SWAY?!
7 – Dragon Ball Super, Universe 6 vs Universe 7 tournament.
Goku SS Blue + Kaioken x 10 (3,4,4.5,4,5,4) = 25.5
WHAT A THROWBACK to 90’s rhythm and beatings.
SS Blue & Kaio Ken x 10!
ITPO= 3, Simply put this amazing and unexpected power boost didn’t beat Hit, for like Goku, he also became stronger during the fight. The fight ended in a suspicious draw…Not to mention there is a theory that he didn’t actually need to go x10, he seemed to have the advantage at normal kaio ken, and only did it as a courtesy to another amazing fighter.
ITCD= 4, An important moment, as it showed the knock on effects that mastering the calmness of mind required for SS Blue can bring. Opening up a slightly different avenue for goku’s progression. Which at this point in the Dragonball series, is very much-needed. Not to mention it finally explained why kiao ken was abandoned after goku obtained SS.
Emotiveness = 4.5, The first moment in DB Super of DBZ level excitement and awe! the series was already very good before this, but this HM just to let the world know that the GOAT was back like Jordan, wearin’ the 4-5, it ain’t to play games with you It’s to aim at you, probably maim you, If I owe you I’m blowin’ you to smithereens C********, take one for your team! And I need you to remember one thing, I came, I saw, I conquered.
Badassness = 4, The life threatening way goku uses Kaioken is forever baddass, but combining it with the mental tranquility of SS Blue made the form more controllable. therefore, for me losing a smidgen of its mortal edge.
Animation = 5, world class animation from beginning to end, especially for DB Super. watch the link if you doubt!
EOVMS = 4, Hit was flabbergasted during this eye watering encounter with the RED BLUE FIST OF JUSTICE! Goku completely over came Hit’s time skip, but yet like the 1000 year old heat tempered blade he is, he didn’t lose the will to fight and eventually got a draw out of it. MY MAN.
6 – Bleach, Final Battle vs Aizen.
The final Getsuga (4.5,4,5,4,4,4) = 25.5
One of the many moments during this fight that i almost turned off my computer from the mains. Words fail me.
ITPO= 4.5, I still can’t believe that this mind numbingly spurbe form of black excellence, wasn’t enough to defeat Aizen! One of the many little flaws that I think plagued the show towards the end. And so, because of this bae can’t get the full 5 marks.
ITCD= 4, An obvious high score if ever there was one, the ultimate personification of being unified with one’s zanpakuto. Not just that, but Ichigo had to develop a whole new understanding of his own soul reaper powers, and an appreciation for the motivations of his Zanpakuto – The physical manifestations of his spiritual power. However, later we discover that his development is still far from complete. not to mention this power can never be used again.
Emotiveness= 5, Do you know what kind of delightful foolishness you have to see on your screen to want to risk life and hard drive by switching off your computer from the mains? The becoming getsuga itself kind.
Badassness= 4, Becoming the special attack you’ve been using for 200 odd episodes, is just a special kind of vengeful sword wielding samurai badass. Not to mention sacrificing the very powers used to obtained said vengeance. However, doesn’t stray into the realm of moral grey, or life sacrifice.
Animation = 4, Simply put, excellent, but not the best I’ve seen on the show. But perhaps i can’t trust my opinion, as at the time of first viewing this, the episode was doing such a number on my cerebrum that i was not fit to use my own eyeballs. Too much sauce. Lost in it. Straight drowning in it.
EOVMS= 4, Aizen, being Aizen will never not believe he can’t win. His god complex is just too robust to the life and times of Kurosaki ichigo. However, he was probably just two easter sunday slaps away from a complete meltdown.
5– Attack on Titan, Season 2
Eren Controlling Titans With His Mind (5,4.5,4,4,4,4) = 25.5
DA GAME DUN CHANGED!
ITPO= 5, This was a complete game changer, the story of Eren and the rest of humanity completely changed in this instant. To now be able to control the very source of humanity’s woes! Insane, like Hilary discovering during the elections that she could telepathically control every member of Trumps family. I will say that, it is unclear exactly how this will affect the future of the show. However, it’s certain that without this ability manifesting itself, every member of the Erens party would of died that day.
ITCD= 4.5, Putting aside the monumental nature of this new skill acquisition, it is clear from the way the story has been written thus far, that there will be further developments and twists to both plot and character. Therefore, there are too many potential variables to be able to completely gauge to true extent of this power. For all we know it may only last as long as Mario’s star invincibility.
Emotiveness = 4, What really worked so well for this HM, was that i feel genuine affection for Mikasa and Eren’s relationship, not to mention the excellent way the series portrays his mortal hatred for the titans, and the constant sense of hopeless dread. Meaning that when it decides to pull on the heart-strings in vintage hollywood style for the sake of an awesome protagonist underdog payoff, it works triumphantly, like a Hawk Eye gold medal at a marvel olympic games.
Badassness = 4, Have you ever known mind controlling Titans to not be baddass? Neither have I. But the most badass? that’s probably a bit of a stretch – of the arm lol. No? never mind.
Animation = 4, This show has such high animation standards, that it’s sometimes hard to be wowed – yet still very nicely executed. A bit Like your fourth KFC of the week.
EOVMS = 4, There are several villains introduced to us in season two. The immediate ones from this particular episode were definitely thrown by this new development, one even stating that ‘The Key’ had been given to the worst possible person. Although the larger threat – the talking orangutan, is not around for us to see what he thinks of Eren tossing Titans at other titans like possessed hotdogs from hell.
4 – DBZ, Future Trunks Arc
Trunks Owning Mecha Frieza – ( 4,4,4,5,4,5) = 26
The only jacket I wanted more than the MJ’s thriller jacket!
Trunks Kills Mecha Frieza
ITPO= 4, This only misses out of full marks because after Future Trunks finished wiping his ass with Frieza & King Cold, we found out that Goku was just around the ‘corner’ waiting to lay the smack down if needed.
ITCD= 4, For sure this is the most we’ve ever learned about a character in one episode! We learn his name, where he came from, who his parents are, how strong he is and his fighting style! In a show where a new character can be sat with their eyes closed, barely breathing for 5 episodes, this was basically a DBZ christmas special. Fully spoiled.
Emotiveness= 4, Maybe the greatest introduction to a new protagonist in Anime history! I literally was trying to think of legal ways to enter my 6th form prom night like that. But, obviously not having that previous connection to the character, held it back from turning my brain into shish-kabab.
Badassness= 5, A Time travelling Super Saiyan with a sword, capable of killing Robocop frieza and his dad the flu. LEAVE IT OUT.
Animation= 4, Excellent in parts, especially because we’ve never seen a Saiyan fight like that, but then falls victim to that random DBZ thing of a random loss of funding midway through an episode.
EOVMS = 5, Frieza is not the most stable of individuals infront of any Saiyan ever since Goku gave him PTSD, but speed and efficiency at which Trunks broke him mentally before his death was beautiful.
3– Naruto, Chunin Exams Saga
Rock Lee 5th Gate Barrage vs Gara (4.5,5,5,4.5,5,2) = 26
The most soul quenching, and life affirming twenty-three minutes of my life! This episode was when I discovered that Rock Lee lived like Goku & Cristiano Ronaldo fused into one. Even non anime loving heathens, could appreciate the glory in this eyebrow filled spectacle of want and resolve. The 5th gate was opened.
Rock Lee Final Barrage vs. Gara
ITPO= 4.5, This Superbowl level hail mary wasn’t able to conclusively end the fight, because of Gara’s ability to control sand, even when he no longer had the physical strength to continue battle. Which btw is totally unfair! If not for Lee’s inability to withstand the burden of opening the 5th gate, he would have definitely won this fight. #bitter
ITCD= 5, It wasn’t just the mere fact that we saw a new power up, that expanded your concept of what this character was capable of today and in the tomorrows to come. But also, that we were given an explanation of the level of self-sacrifice it took for the character to achieve these taijutsu abilities. The execution of this HM was so well delivered that we also learned more about the depth of his relationship with his sensei.
Emotiveness = 5, The sole reason I went to the gym on thursday 11th 2006.
Badassness= 4.5, Rock Lee is a certified G. But his purity of heart and intentions, take just that little bit away from full renegade status.
Animation= 5, This was another one of those episodes where Naruto flexes its muscles as the best animated tv show of its generation. When it comes to fight scenes and choreography, I have to agree. Masterful.
EOVMS =2, Gara’s protective sand didn’t just shield him from most physical attacks, it also gave him an arrogance and psychological shield from hopelessness. Add his blood lust on top of that and you can see why – despite his surprise at Lee’s strength he maintained his focus of Lee’s death.
2. Dragon Ball Z, Cell Games Arc
Gohan SSJ 2 vs Perfect Cell (5,5,5,3,4,4) = 26
The moment Gohan became everyone’s favourite character! Ghad, when he snatched the senzu beans out of Cell’s hands in a blur of high-speed disrespect, I actually felt my stomach clench, like in the anticipation of falling. He looked so beautifully enraged and drenched in purposeful power. His slow march towards Cell, clad in the blue electricity of a God, will be forever etched into my mind. SSJ 2 Teen Gohan was the pinnacle of a 185 episode long character arc, executed to perfection.
ITPO= 5, Could it be anything else? Without this transformation, the world would of been lost. The son of the father stepped up and put an end to the perfect creation.
ITCD= 5, Like I said, this was the culmination of 185 episodes worth of character development. And when you learn that DBZ was originally written to end here, you really appreciate what Akira was trying to do with the character and the series as a whole. All those moments of rage induced power ups against foes infinitely more powerful than him – were leading to this. The baton was passed, and it was everything I could hope for.
Badassness= 3, This was hard to score, coz yes – he looked like the bringer of justice & vengeance, yet he was a saiyan in torn namekian clothes, he killed Cell with a one handed kamehameha ffs. BUT this transformation wasn’t life threatening in any way, and although his power up incredible, it wasn’t beyond the realm of expectation for an angry Gohan. And lastly, his actions although brutal and efficient, didn’t cross any moral lines.
Animation= 4, Misses out on that necessary 5 because of some weird production choice of flipping back and forth from two different animation styles – one cheap as F*** and the other A1 excellence.
EOVMS= 4, Like most Villains of Arc defining quality he was able to regain his composure after throwing an episode long b**** fit! who can blame him GOHAN WAS KILLING CELL JRS IN ONE HIT!
1. Dragon Ball Z, Frieza Saga
Goku SSJ 1 for the first time (5,5,5,4,4,4) = 27
No matter how you feel about this list, no one can deny the historical and cultural impact of this moment in the Dragonball franchise. And the fact that it’s No.1, although not even in my top 10 favourite anime moments, shows 1. the stiffness of competition, and 2. that I succeed in my mission to create an objective scoring system. Now let us enjoy delving into why every teenage boy in the 90’s was screaming in their bedroom topless.
ITPO= 5, As obvious as obvious can be, the ultimate legendary form of the Super Saiyan not seen for 1000 years! (so the legend goes) and solely due to this transformation, was he able to ‘defeat’ Frieza his greatest ever foe and survive the EVENTUAL explosion of planet Namek.
ITCD = 5, If I could, I would give this a 6! Now admittedly this form benefits from its age, and the subsequent developments that have stemmed over the last 10 years creating a character arc that few other shows can revival. This form was like the first time a blind child saw colour – a blind child who was later to gain x-ray vision. SSJ 1 was the foundations for everything.
Emotiveness = 5, To this day, it still gives me goose bumps, my only wish is that i was able to see this moment from a perspective of ignorant bliss, that would of probably changed my religion.
Badassness = 4, For many of the reasons stated before in HM that didn’t achieve the full score, this didn’t either. Even in this legendary form of a race of warriors, Goku still wasn’t cold-hearted/badass enough to kill Frieza – he even gave him some of his energy! SMH
Animation = 4, Very good for DBZ standard, but beyond the initial transformation, it didn’t feel or look like anything out of the ordinary was done to create a visual experience that would add to the moments epicness.
EOVMS= 4, Like I’ve said countless times, the top warriors don’t fold like envelops at christmas. However, even a tyrant such as Frieza couldn’t escape the worry and strife of witnessing a race he tried to extinguish finally achieve the power he feared most. Even though he continued the battle with belief and bravado, Frieza was permanently mentally scarred by his encounter and defeat to KAKAROT THE SUPER SAIYAN.
Thank you everyone for your time, it was an emotional journey frought with danger and personal sacrifice, but all the best ones are. Live long and prosper.
© Alpha Maurice Cidade Cauwenbergh – Storyteller, Poet & Intern at Wordsmith Inc 2015. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Alpha Maurice Cidade Cauwenbergh – Storyteller, Poet & Intern at Wordsmith Inc with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.