July 05, 2009

DBZ -- Engineer's Disease

At the beginning of the Androids/Cell sequence in DBZ, the introduction to the new plotline is known as the "Trunks Saga". Frieza survived the destruction of Namek, and under direction of his father King Cold is rebuilt as a cyborg, with even greater power than before. Then they head towards Earth, with the intention of killing everyone before Goku can return from planet Yardrat, which is where he ended after Namek blew up.

Frieza's ship was faster and made it to earth 3 hours sooner than Goku, which is why Trunks felt he needed to step in and take care of Frieza and King Cold. Which he did.

Laying in bed last night it suddenly occurred to me, why was Goku even using that damned space ship? It had already been established that his Instant Transmission, which he learned on Yardrat, was capable of operating over stellar distances. During the Garlic Junior saga, Goku practiced it once by going to the empty star system where Vegeta was trying to become a super saiyajin.

So why didn't Goku use the Instant Transmission to return to Earth once he was through with his training on Yardrat?

...well, because then he'd have been there to fight Frieza, so we wouldn't have seen Trunks do it, so that when Trunks revealed that the androids were too much for him we couldn't get proper power inflation established:

Trunks >> Frieza
Androids >> Trunks

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Engineer's Disease at 02:16 PM | Comments (7) | Add Comment
Post contains 242 words, total size 1 kb.

1 Possible answer:  He needed to bring the spaceship home so that people without instant transmission could use it.  Also, if he just abandoned it, even if Bulma could work hard to replace it, she might not want to if he just wants to use it to go off and find someone new to learn from.  Only problem with the second explanation is that long term planning like that is a bit out of character for Goku.  I don't know if he knew that he would be needed back home quickly.  

Posted by: PatBuckman at July 07, 2009 09:50 AM (VzWpM)


They already had a working space ship. It's the one Vegeta stole and eventually returned in. They didn't need the one Goku brought back, and in fact they never use any space ship for anything for the rest of the series.

The only time they ever need to visit other places, they use teleportation. E.g. Goku uses his instant transmission to visit new Namek in order to recruit Dende to become the new Kami. Or Kibito using his teleportation ability to move various people to the planet of the Kai's at various times.

They do use a spaceship in one of the later movies, but it's the one Vegeta stole.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at July 07, 2009 10:19 AM (+rSRq)

3 My understanding is that the weakness of Instant Transmission is that it only travels to a known location or person. If Goku wants to travel to say, Vulcan, where he has never been and he doesn't know anyone there, he needs a ship.

If it were me, and Goku teleported home without the ship, and I had no reason to suspect he'd be needed quickly, I'd ask him to return and bring the ship back, or at least taxi a pilot over to do it instead. Two ships mean that one can be used for technology development while the other is in service, or that one can be ready to fly while the other is in the shop or being used elsewhere. With space travel being as easy as it is shown, I would imagine that something must have happened with the technology, but off screen because it isn't that kind of series. (If I were a character in dragonball and involved with the situation, I wouldn't know about Freeza or that there wouldn't be anymore space travel in the series.)

Still, when I overthink it that much, I conclude that Goku's time is too valuable to have him performing technical work for the period of time needed to get the thing back. Would the salary of a couple of Capsule Corp. guys be enough cheaper than making the ship in the first place to cover the deprecation of the ship? (I assume this is the ship Bulma's dad built after reverse engineering Goku's drop pod.)

Of course, maybe the parking fees on Yardrat are killer.

Posted by: PatBuckman at July 07, 2009 11:33 AM (VzWpM)

4 *cough*  I've always taken it on faith, that DBZ is one of the worst series to actually give any thought to. . .

Posted by: metaphysician at July 07, 2009 11:36 AM (AliQw)

5 I have a condition that causes me to massively over think things.  Dragonball at leasts holds together for me when I shake it mentally.  DeathNote did not.  Maybe it isn't written to Tom Kratman standards, but Tom is not the set of all legitimate fiction.

Posted by: PatBuckman at July 07, 2009 12:02 PM (VzWpM)


If Goku wants to travel to say, Vulcan, where he has never been and he doesn't know anyone there, he needs a ship.

Nope. Afraid not.

He needed to reach new Namek in order to recruit a new Kami who could create dragonballs. He went to North Kai, to find out the general direction. The Kai showed him about where the planet was, and Goku was then able to detect Namekian ki from that location, even though he didn't personally know any of the Nameks.

So he'd never been there and didn't know any of them, but reached the place through Instant Transmission anyway.

He targets ki, but it doesn't have to be the ki of someone he knows. It just has to be ki that he can sense.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at July 07, 2009 12:43 PM (+rSRq)

7 MetaP, that's why this post is in the "Engineer's Disease" category.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at July 07, 2009 12:43 PM (+rSRq)

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