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I'm a proud Saiyan who calls Earth home, and I'm here to defeat you. I am the warrior you've heard of in legends, pure of heart, and awakened by fury. That's what I am. I AM THE SUPER SAIYAN, SON GOKU!!!

Dragon Ball has many awesome moments per character, but putting down the crowning ones is a tough job to do.

  • Chichi may be an overprotective education mama, but she's definitely one of the strongest characters in the series. Sure, she's a normal human, except for the fact she can

 1. Bully both Goku AND Piccolo into taking driver's ed in a filler episode (all for the sole purpose of driving her around).

2. Terrorize both her husband and son (and by extension Yamucha, Tenshinhan, Piccolo, AND Vegeta) into obedience by threatening to not feed them.

3. Trained Goten to the point where he went Super Saiyajin... without teaching him how to fly. In the anime, she even took a punch from him in that form when he first transformed.

4. Stand up to Super Buu (granted it didn't end well for her, but it was still pretty awesome.)

    • Shame most of that didn't happen in canon storyline though. Chichi's greatest moment of the series actually happens offscreen: How she managed to get innocent, naive Goku to have sex with her (at least) twice, we will never know!
      • How she managed to SURVIVE that is an entirely different story. Let me remind you that at several points Goku shows difficulties in controlling his ever growing strength. She's a walking crowning of awesome just for that.
      • The Buu thing happens in the manga and is so perfectly canon.
      • Tricked him into it by starting to talk about eating p....?
      • Despite being in the anime filler, she got one big time in the Trunks Saga. Gohan's Jerkass tutor learned one hard lesson... Never talk smack about her family, or her husband!
  • Goku's entrance on Namek, which would've been completely in place had Enter Sandman been playing though, without thousands of people singing along...yeah. First, his "fight" with Jeice...

 Jeice: We've had enough of this, you coward! Now make a move--(gets decked by Goku) OWWW!

Burtah: What? Is it bleeding?!

Jeice: shot!

Goku: said to make a move. I thought you meant you were ready to go at it.


 Goku: I saw an opening that seemed to scream out "attack." So... I did. Ha!

    • The awesomeness of his arrival on Namek is maintained in Dragon Ball Abridged when the music of Hulk Hogan's theme tune is playing in the background in Episode 20.
    • Gohan's is, of course, his complete mental breakdown followed by his handing Cell his ass as a Super Saiyan 2. The transformation was accompanied by a song created just for that moment in the original Japanese. And it was sung by Hironobu Kageyama. Do the math.
      • A runner-up would have to be in Movie 12, when final form Frieza emerges from Hell leading an army of warriors Goku and his crew have defeated over the course of the series. Gohan, now an adult, confronts Frieza, flies right at him, circumventing the entire army, and punches Frieza one time. The force of the blow is enough to make Frieza explode into a million pieces, and send his army running in fear.
      • Another one would have to be when he comes back to confront Super Buu. Buu asks if he really wants to fight him, and Gohan comes back with "Fight you? No; I wanna kill you." That was so badass, considering Gohan's usually nice nature.
      • This one is even more badass when you consider Gohan beat the ever living hell out of Super Buu without even trying.
      • Note that during the entire arc, no, series, The Z-Fighters used Ki Attacks to fight their enemies. In Gohan's fight against Super Buu, he didn't fire one. That alone cements his growth from Dogged Nice Guy to Badass.
      • Or the scene where he beats the everliving fuck out of Frieza while the theme song plays during the early Frieza saga.
    • On that note, the emergence of the first Super Saiyan would have to be Goku's crowning moment (I am the hope for the Universe! etc.) in Z, but in Dragon Ball there are just too many.
      • Kamehameha and Instant Transmission fighting Cell is also remarkable.
      • Another big reason why it's so awesome is this: Frieza had been smacking everybody around like they were nothing for upward of 20 episodes (10 in Dragon Ball Kai) and once Goku finally transforms, it's satisfying as hell to see Frieza get his just deserts and finally, genuinely know what it feels like to be nigh-powerless against an enemy.
      • As a shining example of how outclassed Frieza was, Goku's dodging a myriad of Frieza's trademark Death Beams, and Frieza calls him out on it, saying that only because he's dodging them, he's staying alive. Goku's response? He stays still and takes one in the face. After emerging unscathed, he says this gem.

 Goku: You can destroy whole planets, but you can't destroy one man

      • Goku's entire verbal beatdown of Frieza at the end of their fight on Namek was ALMOST better than the entire fight. This is after Frieza has thrown EVERYTHING he has at Goku, verbally and physically.
      • Typically, when a hero goes berserk and begins to decimate a villain, something happens that makes them stop. An ally calls out to them to stop, or some external factor helps the hero comes to a realization that breaks their rage. What makes Goku's battle with Frieza as a Super Saiyan all the more amazing is that this doesn't happen. Everything until this point suggests that Goku's then new found power, rage, and battle lust has eclipsed his common sense, there's no one on Namek aside from him and Frieza, and the planet's impending destruction makes an all-out battle to the death seemingly the only option. But once the fight gets the point where Frieza is struggling, Goku realizes he doesn't have to kill him, as the tyrant's ego has been shot to pieces. He breaks himself out of his rage.
  • Vegeta fighting Frieza, all the way from his first punch to his death, pretty much attracted most of his fans to the character.
    • Admittedly, for a character that doesn't have as many victories as the main characters, his Crowning Moment of Awesome tends to be the insane amount of damage he can take and still be up like in the one minute of beatings he took that Goku then proceeded to waste. But his being a tank with attitude is probably what makes this character a Badass. But he does have his moments such as his owning Imperfect Cell and then his Final Flash against Perfect Cell.
    • How much of a beating can he take and keep fighting? In the fight against Kid Buu, he gets pounded into the ground not once, not twice, but three times. Buu thinks he's won, when Vegeta stands up, covered in blood, slowly walks toward him, and starts making a speech about how he can't be defeated by such measly attacks. Buu is frozen with a look of utter shock on his face, and then he takes a step back in fear. When you scare the fight out of Majin Buu, you know you're Badass.

 Vegeta: "What did you think, huh? That I was gonna roll over and die from an attack like that? You're nothing. Just a trickster. I am a warrior... the Saiyan Prince... VEGETA!!!"

    • There was also his fight with Recoome. He knew from the very beginning that he was completely outclassed, yet he still beat the shit out of him various times by using every trick in the book. Recoome seemingly won the battle at various points, yet Vegeta would pop right back up and lay the smackdown some more.
      • What really makes this scene is Vegeta's awesome power-up in the anime. No one screams better than Vegeta. After the screaming, he kneels the way football players kneel at the line of scrimmage... and THEN takes off.
    • Vegeta blowing Jeice to bits is certainly a Crowning Moment of Badass. Or a crowning moment of Kick the Dog, because at that point, Jeice was not fighting back. He also delivered a Coup De Grace to every member of the Ginyu Force sans Ginyu himself.
      • Made even more awesome when you think about the fact that Vegeta is responsible for the deaths of basically Frieza's entire army on Namek sans Frieza and Captain Ginyu. Yes, that's right. Vegeta kills everyone. Cui, Zarbon, and Dodoria? All done in by Vegeta. Gohan and Krillyn owe him their lives.
    • Vegeta versus Android 19 was a fun fight to watch. After Goku is incapacitated for a good chunk of the arc by a heart virus, Vegeta steps in to finish the job. After revealing he can go Super Saiyan himself, he thrashes 19, and tosses off some awesome lines in the process:

 "So tell me...does a machine like you experience fear?"

"Fresh out of the factory with no warranty, and already broken. What a pity."

"My, my. What do we have here? Oh yes, the ultimate tub of LARD BUCKET OF BOLTS!"

      • At one point, #19 tries to absorb Vegeta's energy. Vegeta anticipates this, and grabs the android's wrists, shoves his boots in its face and starts pulling. What follows is an exchange that averts and lampshades Never Say "Die".

 Still think you can hang on long enough to steal my energy?

I, will, never, let, you, go!"

Yes! That's the spirit, android! NEVER SAY DIE!

      • This is followed by Vegeta ripping off #19's arms.
    • Resisting Babidi's mind control through sheer force of will. No one had ever done that. His speech about pride made it all the better.
    • It has to be his final line against Buu while he was Majin Vegeta and he had just gotten thoroughly pummeled. "I'm going to crush you... and throw you into the wind!"
      • While we're on the subject of the Majin saga, let's talk about his fight with Pui Pui. Conditions arise where he and Vegeta were transferred to Pui Pui's home world (briefly as it was), where he feels the planet's higher gravity -- ten times that of Earth's -- will incapacitate Vegeta. Vegeta, who had spent the entire length of the time skip -- seven years, mind you -- training in progressively stronger gravity simply remarks, "Perhaps if your planet had five hundred times gravity, you'd have a slight advantage. But ten? I don't even feel it!" He then hops around in a boxing stance before annihilating Pui Pui.
        • Mentioned early on during Z: planet Vegeta also had ten times Earth's normal gravity. So Pui Pui's choice to fight on his homesoil thinking he had an advantage was a clear case of Did Not Do the Research.
    • Just saw it again. Hands down, Vegeta's best scene is his tearful death speech when he's dying at the hands of Frieza. First and first of only two time he cries, and the only time we get a glimpse at what made him what he is today. And they said DBZ couldn't get dramatic. Watch it here, partway through. (The original dub, so while there is plenty of Narm what with the inexperience of the voice actors at the time, it's still a Tear Jerker.)
      • The other cry was when he blew himself up to try and kill Majin Buu (it didn't work). He admits that it was the first time he fought for someone other than himself.
    • His sadistic and stunning I Am Not Left-Handed execution of Android 19 was pretty spectacular too.
    • He gets another awesome moment with his FINAL FLASH against Cell. It didn't work, but it was one of the most epic and ridiculously over-the-top attacks in the entire series (that is saying something).
      • Besides, this is the attack that makes Cell scream out "OH SHIT!" in basically every language but English.
    • And his actions at the end of the Cell saga, despite being a Hope Spot, were incredibly awesome especially given what it meant for Vegeta's Character Development. Goku had attempted to stop Cell with a Heroic Sacrifice, but failed. And Cell's first action after coming Back From the Dead was to blast a hole in Trunks's heart. Vegeta goes ballistic, and attacks Cell head on. This is a guy who, just ten days before, utterly beat the crap out of Vegeta without even trying. But what really makes this noteworthy is that this is the first time that Vegeta has ever lost his temper for the sake of another person.
      • And following that, during Gohan's Beam-O-War with Cell, the other Z Fighters leap in and try to distract Cell. Vegeta stays behind. The other warriors are overwhelmed, and it looks like Cell's about to win...then a blast out of nowhere hits Cell from behind. Cue shot to Vegeta, hovering in midair, palm outstretched. That one action gave Gohan the opportunity he needed to overwhelm Cell.
    • Vegeta's speech about his pride when he refuses Babidi's order to kill the Supreme Kai anyone? Enough to make the Supreme Kai, Babidi, and Dabura go "WTF?" (and to demolish the surrounding mountains with beamspam while standing still). Wx 9 G Tjww
    • Vegeta is 1 of 2 characters to get up and keep fighting after being hit with a Spirit Bomb. The Oh Crap from Kuririn, Goku, Gohan, Yajirobe, and King Kai is telling.
    • Vegeta saving Kuririn and Gohan from Guldo was pretty awesome. Nothing like a good decapitation for a warm-up.
  • Piccolo exudes so much awesome that I don't think there's a specific moment that stands out.
    • Callously killing Sancho in the movie Dead Zone, then double-teaming Garlic Jr. with Goku.
    • Blasting a hole through both Goku and Raditz.
    • When Gohan turned into a Oozaru and started rampaging, Piccolo casually decided to BLOW UP THE MOON!!!
    • Don't forget his Heroic Sacrifice for Gohan, Taking the Bullet (or better said, the blast) meant for the kid. That scene marked his last step into Heel Face Turn, and was also a peak point in his Character Development. His teary eyed speech about how he didn't expect Gohan to change him so much and that the boy was his first friend ever is still one of the series greatest Crowning Moment of Heartwarming.
      • Fighting Frieza in his second form and putting on one hell of a fight. Also, his booting Frieza into a lake to buy Goku enough time to form a Spirit Bomb was pretty badass as well. He literally came out of nowhere.
    • Utterly crushing Dr. Gero and then severing his arm.
    • Reuniting with Kami to become the Namek that he once was.
    • The fight where he creamed Android 17 is a good one to cite.
    • Slicing Babidi in half.
    • Basically any movie where he shows up to make the save for Gohan and beat up the henchmen of the Big Bad.
      • This (mixed with a Crowning Moment of Funny) is seen in the second Broly movie. Gohan looked like he was done for, and then someone saves him from Broly's attack. He looks up and sees Piccolo in his blurred vision, but what he actually saw was Krillin dressed as Piccolo.
    • Going after Ultimate Perfect Cell when Cell and Gohan were locked in a Kamehameha Wave clash, even though Piccolo didn't have a hundred-thousandth of Cell's power. Until he acted, everyone still able to fight was just watching as Cell began to beat Gohan down.
      • Going from the above, Piccolo, Tenshinhan, Yamucha, and Krillin's struggle to hold out against Cell's energy as they blasted him in an attempt to give Gohan some help.
    • In Cooler's Revenge, shooting the last surviving minion with the Special Beam Cannon just as he was about to attack the exhausted Z-Fighters... from so far away nobody could see him.
  • Gohan . He was most definitely the epitome of epic and everything about DBZ. Let's list his awesome feats shall we?
    • In the hopeless battle against Nappa he charges the bald headed brute and fells him with a single kick. Even though he still rises up again it's amazing nonetheless.
    • Vegeta impulsively presses Gohan's Berserk Button when he knees Goku in the gut while he's down. Gohan enraged kicks him in the face then engages Vegeta in a mini awesome battle while Krillin prepares to nail him with the Spriit Bomb. When Krillin sees the opportunity to strike Vegeta (which is ruined by Yajirobe's outburst and Krillin's bad timing) with the Spirit Bomb who jumps in the air dodging it. The Spirit Bomb then heads in the direction of a fatigued Gohan. Everyone looks on in fear as Gohan is about to be struck by it but Goku telepathically communicates with Gohan and tells him to bounce the Spirit Bomb at Vegeta who is unable to avoid it and is shot up to sky. How Badass is that?
    • Arriving on Planet Namek Gohan and Krillin watch as Frieza terrorizes a Namekian village's villagers for the location of the Dragon Balls. After ordering henchmen Dodoria to kill the Namek soldiers that come to the villagers aid Frieza backs out on his deal to leave him alone and kills the village elder's son and then him. Now eying the village elders other son who is petrified with fear tells Dodoria to dispose of him as well. Let's say Gohan wasn't to please with this and springs into action and kicks Dodoria's fatass through a house. Even when Dodoria gets back up Gohan stands his ground and tells him to bring it on.
    • Frieza pushes another one of Gohan's buttons and impales Krillin and sadistically tortures him. After tossing Krillin into the sea Gohan goes berserk and starts kicking several levels of ass after hammering him with a flurry of punches and kicks then Masenko's frieza.
    • When Piccolo is losing to Frieza's third transformation Gohan interferes in the battle and does a gigantic Masenko and nearly becomes the one who puts an end to him.
    • Although filler After Frieza buries Goku under a hundred feet of concrete he presumes that he wins. Gohan sensing his dad's defeat heads back to the battlefield and attempts to pull a Taking You with Me. However, Frieza realizes this when Gohan keeps on trying to run away and explains to him how he's able to survive anywhere. Gohan frustrated lashes out at Frieza and punches him a dozen times and finishes his Meteor Move with a Masenko. This attack doesn't work but it does push Frieza to use his powered up final form he used against Goku as a Super Saiyan.
    • The Entirety of Garlic JR. Saga is one big Moment of Awesome for Gohan.
    • In the Cell Games Super Saiyan 2 Gohan nuff said. Why?
      • Embarrasses Cell by copying his fighting style and matching him move for move. Preceding that he effortlessly destroys the Cell Juniors.
        • Hell, he's the reason Krillin got Android 18 back
      • And *drum roll* There's the final climatic battle between Gohan and Cell who injures him after covering for Vegeta after Cell knocks him out. It's Kamehameha vs Kamehameha. Gohan is somewhat reluctant to unleash his full power on Cell because he thinks he'll destroy the world and is doubting himself. In the anime everyone helps him out until he finds the power to destroy Cell. Cell tosses aside the rest of Z-fighters like ragdolls and is nearly about to win until Vegeta steps in badass and strikes Cell from behind giving Gohan the chance to kill Cell. The Slasher Smile on Gohan's face as he's blasting cell away with a ONE HANDED Kamehameha is simply orgasmically satsifying.
    • What makes Gohan so awesome in general is that most of his Moments of Awesome happens BEFORE he turns 10. While Goku was frolicking in the forest at that age, Gohan was going up against the likes of Vegeta, Frieza, and Cell.
  • Vegetto, the fusion of Goku and Vegeta, seems to be this trope incarnate, plus Crazy Awesome.
    • Same with Gogeta.

 I am neither Goku or Vegeta, I am Gogeta! It's over Janemba, I've come for you!

  • Even Krillin has moments of awesome. In both the Vegeta and Frieza fights, there's a point where he keeps the villain busy (holding out absurdly long given the difference in power) and buys desperately-needed time for the big guns.
    • When one thinks about it, he was actually pretty badass on Namek. With all of the conventionally heroic/badass characters either dead or on another planet somewhere, the fate of the universe was left in the hands of Those Two Guys. He and Gohan manage to survive for an absurdly long time on this planet surrounded by bad guys, outsmarting Vegeta, and even Frieza until help arrived.
      • Special mention should go to the scene where he stomps Recoome's mouth shut, interrupting his Recoome Eraser Gun attack (a powerful mouth beam). This knocked nearly all of his teeth out, giving Gohan valuable time to save a badly battered Vegeta's skin in the nick of time.
    • In the Cell Saga, he even manages to keep the much more powerful Cell from killing a girl and her brother. He holds him off long enough for Piccolo and Tien to arrive, and the kids to escape. He even pounds Cell with an awesome headbutt that gives the Android visible pain.
    • Krillin's best moment however, is probably the entirety of the Saiyan fight:
      • He singlehandedly defeats almost all of the saibamen with a single attack.
      • He gives NAPPA a run for his money, nearly killing him with the Destructo Disc.
      • He nearly finished off Vegeta in the end (Goku talked him out of it).
      • He (with Gohan's help) nailed Vegeta with a spirit bomb.
      • After the end of the fight, he was the only surviving Z fighter who could still walk.
    • He's also inexplicably popular with the ladies. He dated Maron and eventually marries Android 18. Pretty smooth for a little guy.
    • His Heroic Sacrifice against Buu qualifies. When Buu shows up at Kami's lookout, Krillin tries to fight him anyway just to give everyone else a chance to escape, even though he KNOWS he doesn't stand a chance. Everyone ends up dying anyhow, but you gotta give Krillin credit for at least trying.
      • In another scene later on, Krillin risks his very existence to protect denizens of Otherworld and takes on Kid Buu. He is already dead at this point, so if had died here, he would have completely ceased to exist. No reincarnation, nothing. HE ACTUALLY HITS Kid Buu with the destructo disc. Sadly, Kid Buu can regenerate, nulling his efforts. The sad thing is, that would have worked on almost anyone else.
  • Tenshinhan comes out of nowhere with a moment of awesome in the final fight with Buu. (Alas, this didn't make it into the video game retelling Legacy of Goku: Buu's Fury.)
    • Come to think of it, Tenshinhan did the very same thing with Semi-perfect Cell, showed up out of nowhere and blasted him into a hole in the ground over and over and over again. "There you go, Cell. A little greeting from the no-count."
      • Especially since that blast is supposed to kill whoever uses it once and using it twice is supposedly near impossible.
        • Actually it drains life energy instead of energy, it doesn't kill you unless you are weakened while using it.
        • Lets not forget this attack is called the Tri-Beam, which is obviously in the shape of a triangle, yet this attack managed to leave a crater in the ground that was SQUARE in shape. Physics is no match for Tenshinhan.
        • While Tien's hands make a triangular shape when he prepares to use the Tri-Beam, the space between his hands, which is where the Tri-Beam's shape should come from, is squarish or even circular. Also, Kikoho roughly translates to something like "Breath Work Attack", referencing martial arts that use breathing techniques as a means to increase combat effectiveness. "Tri-Beam" is a poor translation of the name of the attack that only serves to cause misunderstandings.
  • Cell is considered by some to be the best villain in the franchise and its hard to argue when he's one of the Trope Codifiers for making evil stylish, awe-inspiring, and badass:
    • In his imperfect form, he pulls out extreme amounts of savvy to compensate for the fact that, for the moment, our heroes could still defeat him before he obtained the power he needed, something that sets him apart from many of the other villains in the show (or even himself, come Perfect Form). He rarely gloats and Knows When To Fold 'Em, never brashly fighting in a situation where it would be more cost effective to run instead. He takes advantage of the fact that the heroes can only react to his actions by striking quickly and then leaving before they have time to arrive. He bides his time and acts very patiently, only taking action when he is absolutely sure he can succeed, and when he does fight, he is ruthlessly efficient. Should anyone stand in his way or attack him, he always makes sure to take care of them immediately if he can and do so quickly, rather than let them escape to continue to thwart him later. This becomes especially evident during his initial attempt to absorb 17 and 18: as 16 and Piccolo interrupt him, he stops pursuing his grand goal and takes care of them first, knowing that while he could take the others at his leisure he couldn't allow the only beings nearly as powerful as him to continue to act against him. It's safe to say that Cell was certainly a Magnificent Bastard in his imperfect form.
    • Cell breaking Piccolo's neck with one punch and then blasting a hole through his chest and throwing him into the ocean.
    • Cell absolutely owning Android 17. It was seriously a brutal asskicking.
    • Cell not only surviving Android 16's most powerful technique, Hell's Flash, but then appearing quietly behind Android 17 and absorbing him with surprise.
    • His complete and utter destruction of the Royal Army, who threw everything they had against him and still miserably failed.
    • Cell cementing his status as not only a Magnificent Bastard but a Manipulative Bastard as well by pulling of an excellent Batman Gambit against Vegeta. Cell, in his semi-perfect form, was getting dominated by Vegeta, who for the few episodes that the fight last for, had become the strongest character in the show due to becoming an Ascended Super Saiyan. Because he was made up of the cells of Vegeta and other pure blooded Saiyans such as Goku, Raditz and Nappa, he knew that Vegeta's greatest weakness is his pride and that a Saiyan would be willing to go to great lengths for good battle because they love a challenge and love to fight. Semi-Perfect Cell then uses that weakness to manipulate Vegeta by telling him that if he had the chance to reach his perfect form he would become a worthy adversary, and he claims that Vegeta would be no match for him. Vegeta, who hungers for a challenge, any chance to prove that he is the best no matter what the risk and thrives for any good fight in general, lets his ego get the best of him and falls for Cell's trap by stepping back from battle, allowing Semi-Perfect Cell an open opportunity to absorb Android 18, so that he will become a worthy opponent and actively helped him by stopping Trunks from interfering so he could absorb Android 18. Cell eventually finds and absorbs Android 18 and achieves his perfect form and then proceeds to no sell EVERY attack Vegeta throws at him, kicks Vegeta’s ass senseless with little effort and rubs in Vegeta’s face how stupid he was to help him achieve his perfect form and become more powerful and how he should have killed him when he had the chance.
    • Cell's awesome speech to Piccolo when he's asked by him why he's so obsessed with achieving his "perfect" form:

"Why do I seek ultimate power? Such a pointless question. It was the goal of the computer to create the Ultimate Warrior. Or perhaps it's the blood of Saiyans, Frieza, and Piccolo flowing through my veins that drives me thus."

    • Cell, after achieving his perfect form, nearly killing Krillin with a single kick.
    • Before that, Krillin threw a Destructo Disk at Cell and it shattered against his neck. Keep in mind, this attack managed to cut Nappa's cheek, slice off Freeza's tail, and even cut Kid Buu in half. Cell flat out NO SELL'D it.
    • Cell's "training exercise" after achieving perfection - going out in space and crushing meteors with his bare hands.

Every moment of his "fight" with Vegeta after he achieves his perfect form. Seriously, it's fantastic, especially seeing as Vegeta totally had it coming.

    • How about the fact that, out of all the villains, Cell was the only one to successfully kill Goku? That achievement alone is a villainous moment of awesome, even if it was willing on Goku's part.
    • Cell also survives his own sacrifice explosion because of his regeneration and gets a zenkai boost. The first thing he does after killing Trunks is breaking Super Saiyan 2 Gohan's arm, who was shielding a wounded Vegeta. The opponent that humiliated Cell and even got Cell scared. Cell couldn't even faze him before. And now, he's completely turned the tables and is making Gohan suffer from a Heroic B.S.O.D.. What makes this whole thing better is that Cell had suffered from a major grabbing of the Villain Ball thanks to his massive ego throughout the entirety of the Cell Games up until this point. In just one swift move, he'd come back out and top and then some, seeming like a truly unstoppable threat.

He gets to be one of the few villains who are Defiant to the End in any Dragon Ball show. Frieza mainly screams something along the lines of "DAMN YOU GOKU!", and Kid Buu just screams in general. Cell's last words were him proclaiming he's still perfect.

  • Frieza. He kills Dende because he can heal people.
  • Let's give Yamucha his props, too, shall we? In the initial battle with the Saiyajin, Kuririn initially volunteers to fight the Saibaimen first, but Yamucha stops him, saying that if Kuririn dies, he can't be wished back by the Dragon Balls. Of course, Yamucha was the Butt Monkey before Kuririn made it cool, so die he does... but it was still awesome, and it's no wonder Kuririn is upset enough to obliterate nearly every other Saibaman around.
    • Yamcha also saved everyone from Oozaru Goku, grabbing the creature's tail and paralyzing it long enough for Puar to cut it off, as seen below.
    • His fight against Tenshinhan is seen by many as one of the finest examples of more serious hand-to-hand combat in the series. Of course it doesn´t work quite well for him, but the fight is very nice to look at and it shows that he is no pushover even for future champions.
    • Arguably Yamcha's last great moment was when he defeated Recoome in the afterlife one-on-one. To put it in perspective, he just mopped the floor with a guy who curbstomped Vegeta earlier on. An impressive feat for a guy who has been the series' most consistent Jobber. Sadly, it's not long after this that he gets completely Overshadowed by Awesome and drops out of the series almost entirely.
  • Bardock does it twice. First when he finds his comrades dead, and takes his bandage and wipes the blood off his dead friend's face before wrapping it around his head. Right before unleashing a can of whoop ass on Dodoria's men. Of course, Dodoria comes himself and blasts him with his mouth, leaving him for dead. Afterwards, he returns to his homeworld, and after failing to convince his fellow Saiyans that Frieza is planning to wipe them out, he charges towards his spaceship himself blasting past several henchmen and Mooks he shouldn't able to fight, and just to top it off, he fires a ki blast at Frieza!. Although then again, he was probably planning to kill him with that move, but Frieza replied by creating a massive Death Ball while laughing maniacally, easily nullifying the Saiyan's attack as he fired the ball at him, his soldiers who failed to hold him, and Planet Vegeta, killing all life as he annihilated the planet. At least he went out with a smile.
    • Speaking of Bardock, Burst Limit has a Moment of Awesome (yes, the game has a Moment of Awesome) with the first of its post game arcs which finishes in a dream match between Bardock and Goku with the theme song playing in the background.
      • When reading the Dragonball Z page for Fridge Brilliance, this troper realised something. The trigger to become a Super Saiyan is anger, and Bardock's rebellion is initiated by the discovery that Frieza's men have killed his fellow Saiyans, and under orders from Frieza himself. Sure they were as a race raised to be ruthless, but having clearly fought alongside them for a long time, they were probably the closest thing Bardock ever had to friends. When you consider this, and then his anger when finally face-to-face with Frieza, suddenly the idea of 'Super Saiyan Bardock' seems to have actually been very close to happening.....
      • All he was lacking was power level at the time (Toriyama outlined that Saiyans over 100,000 have enough strength to become Super Saiyans, and the Saiyan average goes between 1200 *Raditz* to 8000 *Bardock's level at the start of his special*, thus how rare it is and why there hadn't been any Super Saiyans in millennium). In the special below, Bardock recovers from a near death experience that claimed the life of his planet and its moon...and that pushed his power level up to 100,000 possibly, making him able to access Super Saiyan abilities through righteous anger.
    • A 2011 spinoff manga showed that Bardock didn't die, but instead went back in time somehow. He then proceeds to become the ruler of what becomes planet Vegeta, defeats Chilled (Frieza's ancestor) and begins the Super Saiyan legend. As an added bonus, he uses the same technique that got him killed in the movie to take Chilled down.
    • The way Bardock becomes a Super Saiyan in the anime is quite awesome too. After being knocked about by Chilled and seeing him supposedly kill a young native, he kneels in the dirt, feeling pathetic to the point where he is implied to be crying, remembering what happened to his friends and his race, and blaming himself for being too weak to save them. Then his sadness turns to anger, and you get that moment where his shadow flashes yellow. Then, after repeatedly glowing yellow, he turns around to face Chilled, seeing both him and Frieza at the same time. Chilled laughs, Bardock screams to the heavens, and finally becomes a Super Saiyan. He then proves that Goku inherited his badass gene from him by doing to Chilled what Goku did to Frieza: completely thrash him.
    • See for yourself.
  • The first duel between Goku and Vegeta. That battle was memorable as it started out their rivalry in the first place, which served as a basis for the Vegeta and Kakarot trope, and was referenced when Vegeta saw Goku turn into Super Saiyan 3 to fight Kid Buu ...again. Goku began the duel and learned that Vegeta was still stronger than him, even after going through the Training From Hell in Heaven, so he decides to take it up a notch with the Kaio-ken. And when that doesn't work, he does it further to Kaio-ken x2 simply to escape one of Vegeta's moves. From then on, Goku's newly learned technique turns into a Deadly Upgrade when he goes Kaio-ken x3, complete with massive Dramatic Wind, Power Echoes and Chunky Updraft, right before Goku gives him an ass-kicking that his own father probably didn't give him, showing exactly who is truly the better of the two. Then it turned into a massive beam struggle, which Goku gives extra juice by pushing to Kaio-ken x4, firing him up into the stratosphere.
  • Yajirobe. In that battle, he comes out of nowhere and cuts off Vegeta's tail after he becomes an Oozaru at the (huge) risk of his own life, after being portrayed as a coward who doesn't want to fight Vegeta. And earlier in Dragon Ball, when he kills and eats Cymbal, one of Piccolo Daimaou's kids.
    • On the topic of Cymbal, note that Yajirobe finishes him off with a single stroke. This is one of the henchmen that were able to rival the winners of the World Martial Arts Tournament. Yajirobe wasn't always just comic relief.
    • Don't forget, in that same battle with Vegeta, when the Saiyan noticed that Gohan's tail had grown back, he made to finish him off quickly so he wouldn't transform. But before he can kill Gohan, Yajirobe leaps at him from behind again, slicing through Vegeta's armor and actually coming very close to killing him.
  • Believe it or not, Puar and Oolong, Yamucha's and Bulma's shapeshifting sidekicks, got theirs, too.
    • Oolong's is the very first on-screen wish ever made on the Dragon Balls, when he interrupts Pilaf's wish for world domination by asking for a pair of girls' panties.
    • Puar's is when she transforms into a giant pair of scissors to lop off Oozaru Goku's tail (of course, she was also the one who drew his attention to the moon and made him transform in the first place...).
  • Where is Mr. Satan on this list? During the Buu saga, he commands the whole world to send their energy to Goku for his Spirit Bomb. Which they do. Said moment is then followed by a high point of the series: See, it seems Goku doesn't have enough energy to throw the Spirit Bomb, right? Well, his buddies, who have one Dragon Ball-related wish left, ask the Dragon to restore his energy. The Dragon states that in light of all their other ridiculous wishes, that one is child's play, and fulfills it. Goku launches the Spirit Bomb. Goodbye, Buu.
    • In that fight, he got a load of them, even just for being there. When Vegeta was about to be double-killed in a way that would subvert Death Is Cheap, he steps in against the being who can make war on the gods with reasonable impunity to buy Goku some time to power back up.
    • The true Moment of Awesome for Mr. Satan has got to be his first appearance during the Cell Games Saga. Mr. Satan is played up as a complete Badass (by normal human standards), who unfortunately is probably weaker than Kamesennin's pet turtle. Despite all of this, he takes a punch from Cell, flies a good distance before being slammed into a mountain hard enough to leave a good sized crater, and SURVIVES. Full Stop.
    • Similarly, in the Buu saga, after he has finally convinced the rest of the species to lend Goku their power for the Spirit Bomb, Buu manages to beat down and trap Vegeta underfoot, knowing that Goku would not let off his ultimate attack and kill Vegeta once again. Fat Buu tackles Kid Buu and Mr. Satan sprints in to get Vegeta out of range so Goku can finally let 'er rip.
    • Another one that made it for this troper in the Cell Saga. Mr. Satan is ready to leave the place with his students, his arm candy and the TV crew when suddenly they hear a voice. They turn and see 16's head who pleads to them to take him to Gohan so he can talk to him. Everyone is convinced that this is a bad idea, yet 16 keeps asking this of Mr. Satan. Everyone says to Mr. Satan that he should not do it, since Cell is standing next to Gohan and can kill him, and that no one will think less of him if he decides to walk away. His response? "Leave me alone. All this nobodies out there and even now a kid is fighting Cell, it would be shameful of a World champion to run away." He then proceeds to cross hell to get 16 close to Gohan. Awesome.
      • To be fair to Cell, he probably wasn't trying his best, but still, Mr. Satan did manage to survive that and the carnage wrought by the battle.
    • A more subtle one for Mr. Satan, also in the Majin Buu saga. He actually manages to stop Buu's first form and (temporarily) saves the world! How does he do it? A new special move? Not likely. A bag of explosive tricks? No. (Although he does try that...) So, how then? Easy: he makes friends with Buu. And helps him make friends with a puppy. Then he teaches Buu the basics of right and wrong, first and foremost not to kill people anymore. Did he just win a battle against Majin Buu that none of the Z Warriors could win with their fists by using compassion? Uh, YEAH. And it was kinda cool.
      • Even Piccolo admits to the greatness of this. When explaining to Videl about what her father did, he calls him a "true champion of Earth". Later, when Gohan, Piccolo, Goten, and Trunks find Mr. Satan wandering on the desolate Earth, Trunks says to just ignore him, to which Piccolo says "No, we should take him with us. He really does have the beginnings of a hero in him."
        • What about the moment when Mr. Satan curbstomps the two gunmen who shot Buu's dog? It's the only time he's really shown kicking ass, and it is awesome.
  • Mr. Satan even gets an amazing moment in GT during the Baby Saga. Giant Golden Ape Baby has just supposedly wiped out every big hero...including his Grand Daughter Pan. What is Mr. Satan's first and only reaction? He stands his ground, takes up a fighting stance and threatens to kill Baby; no joking, no running away. He's dead serious and Goku himself even says that Mr. Satan has impressed him.
  • Android 18. It's a toss up between her utter mauling of Vegeta in the Android Saga, and her hilarious extortion of Mr. Satan in Buu Saga (and the Non-Serial Movie's expansion on it, when she goes and tries to collect her prize...).
    • Also, in GT, when she is confronted by 17, she tells him that the people he is hurting are innocent, and he kills Krillin, she attacks 17 in a fit of rage, and stands in the way of 17's attack when he tried to kill her daughter. This shows that she is truly redeemed, and shuns her former, murderous ways.
  • One of the big weaknesses of DBZ in general is that, as the series progresses, the Saiyans get all the battle glory, and the humans Can't Catch Up. So it's all the sweeter when the anime gives Tenshinhan, Yamucha, and even Chaozu a Crowning Moment when they take on and defeat the Ginyu Force, something even Vegeta couldn't do at first. Watch it here.
    • Tenshinhan got an even better one during the Cell saga, just after Cell absorbed 17. To sneak up on the android, Cell had traveled Tenshinhan blasted him back into that hole, and every time Cell tried to fly out, Tenshinhan just knocked him right back in. No, he wasn't doing any lasting damage, but he managed to stall for a good amount of time so 16 and 18 could escape and Goku could arrive to rescue Piccolo -- and, by that point, Tenshinhan, who had used up most of his energy.
  • Videl has one in the tenth movie, where she hurls a crystal at Broly. Does it hurt him? No, he breaks it without breaking a sweat, and it wouldn't have done anything had it hit anyway. But that wasn't the point. Prior to that, Broly was squeezing the life out of Gohan and stopping to break the crystal distracts Broly enough for Gohan to kick him in the chest, wrench himself free of his grasp, and then proceed to begin the Kamehameha Wave that ends the battle.
    • Videl's first and only major fight in the main series against Spopovich counts as one. Despite being beaten and broken against an enemy with infinite energy, she refuses to give up and personifies the human spirit in the Saiyan-dominated series. Bonus points for the fact she essentially killed him by breaking his neck (which would've disqualified her), but he was able to recover indefinitely since he was being powered by Babidi's magic.
      • The fact that she was, only a short while after being healed from the above, willing to fight someone that had overpowered Gohan was the first time that this troper realized how much she cared about him. It might not be a crowning moment of awesome, but having the guts to do that (particularly since this is DBZ) when you're only ability with ki is flight, and immediately after getting the crap kicked out of you, is pretty damn awesome.
  • This troper thinks the dub had a few good moments here and there. Frieza's "Death is my specialty" was downright creepy. A lot of fans of the original show kinda hate Goku's "I am truth" speech, but I thought it was awesome. Said speech:

 Goku: "You can destroy whole planets, but you can never destroy what I am...friend.

Frieza: "(stunned) Y-you...what are you?"

Goku: "I am the hope of the universe. I am the answer to all living things that cry out for peace. I am protector of the innocent. I am the light in the darkness. I am truth. Ally to good! Nightmare to YOU!

  • Broly got his when he fought Goku, Gohan, Trunks, Vegeta, and Piccolo, all at the same time. And still whooped them.
    • Let us not forget Broly taking a Kamehameha wave point blank and not even so much as a scratch from it.

 Broly: (grabs Goku's head and lifts him up) What the hell was that?!

    • He also punched Vegeta so hard that he left a double-dip impact crater in the wall that Vegeta hit. Needless to say Vegeta was NOT amused... I think the phrase "scared shitless" sums it up quite well.
      • I think it's safe to say that anyone who can make Vegeta of all people BSOD would have to be Badass.
  • Trunks. His future self is considered even more Badass then the present, having singlehandly defeated Frieza and his father just after the former was resurrected too.
    • Some people think that this unexplained burst of entrance awesome qualifies him for Marty Stu status.
  • While GT had its issues, it had some good moments. One this troper is particularly fond of is when Omega Shenron is about to attack a defenseless Goku, until a brick comes out of nowhere, hitting him square in the head. Cut to Vegeta, bouncing another brick idly in his hand.
  • In the World Tournament Saga (the prequel to the main meat of the Majin Buu Saga), the tournament requires everyone to hit a special machine that will gauge their strength and select the finalists. The Z-Fighters agree to go easy on the machine, so they won't seem suspicious. Even with love taps, they still get huge scores, prompting the officials to declare the machine broken. As they prepare to move the old machine aside, Vegeta (who hasn't gone yet) orders them to stand aside. In his usual uncompromising fashion punches the machine with full power, obliterating both the machine and anyone's belief that the machine was getting false readings.
  • Also in that saga, Vegeta says that if the press hassles him he will kill them. His wife, Bulma, simply tells him to behave.
  • Bra, Bulma and Vegeta's daughter, is basically a Living Prop. She's the only Saiyan-related character who doesn't fight, and she was probably created as a visual cue to manga readers that, yes, Bulma and Vegeta were still together after all these years. Despite this, she's an incredibly popular Ensemble Darkhorse and Launcher of a Thousand Ships among fans. While she probably gets points for her pretty clothes and mixing the worst of her parents' incredible tempers, there is no possible arguing whatsoever that the main thing that endeared fans to her was her epic Calling the Old Man Out... because she thought his mustache was stupid. Vegeta shaving the stupid thing off was a major Author's Saving Throw and arguably the point where GT grew what little stubble it was going to get.
    • There is another GT moment related to Bra, but this one is enacted by Vegeta. He is driving her somewhere along a mountain road, and a car full of guys drives alongside the car and start flirting with Bra. They tell her to ditch the "old guy" and ride with them. Vegeta gets a surly look, and he reaches over and pulls their steeling wheel off. Then he rams their car and drives away. The guys can no longer steer and thus drive off the mountain (with Bra amusingly not seeming to mind.) Don't call Vegeta old, don't insinuate incest with his daughter, and do NOT flirt with his daughter.
  • Vegeta's theme music, if it wasn't for the fact that it was used all the time, because everytime it plays, you know Vegeta's either gonna do something insane, or give an equally insane speech.
  • Of all people, Kami gets one -- and of all times, in the Garlic Jr. saga. He has to journey into the underground depths of his home, where he is apparently absolutely not allowed, in order to save earth. While there, he encounters the deranged souls of the former guardians, who attempt to kill him for going there, despite his intentions. He is basically tortured for several episodes in a row, barely clinging to life. Finally, realizing the danger at hand, the former guardians heal him of the damage done to him. The peaceable Popo, with great relief, realizes that they're going to be let go, but Kami stands up screaming insults at the people who had just barely decided to let him live. That's pretty epic, and the cheesy mildness of his words somehow only makes it all that much cooler.

 Popo: You've been pardoned for coming here. They've forgiven you!

Kami: (looks winded for a moment, then stands up scowling) Oh, yeah? Well, I haven't forgiven them. GET A LIFE, YOU STUBBORN OLD FOOLS!

  • "King Kai" and "Awesome" are usually not said in the same breath, but oddly enough, he gets one. After the deaths of the Ginyu force, they arrive at Kai's place unexpectedly and start wreaking havoc, but are soon dispatched in a fun little match between them and Tien, Yamcha, and Chaotzu. We then find out that Kai invited these terrors of the universe in order to test his students' abilities.
    • The fight itself is a Crowning Moment for the human Z-fighters, who were otherwise essentially reduced to Jobber status from the Sayjin saga onwards. For once, the human heroes win a battle without needing the Sayjins to win it for them.
  • Credit needs to be given to pre-Z Dragon Ball here, considering it gave us Tao Pai Pai. The man killed General Blue with his tongue.
    • When Tao Pai Pai says "Who needs a jet when when we've got a perfectly good pillar." He taps the pillar and breaks it out, while leaving the building completely intact then throws the pillar and jumps onto it while it's moving.
  • While Piccolo Jr. gets a lot of moments, serious props have to go to Demon King Piccolo in the original Dragon Ball. After he gathers all the Dragon Balls and has Shenron restore his youthful strength, he decides to fix it so that nobody can ever use the Dragon Balls against him, so he shoots a Ki blast that blows Shenron, the Eternal Dragon into meaty chunks! At that point in the story, that was roughly equivalent to killing God! And he did it with one attack.
  • Given what was going on in the rest of the Cell Games arc, it’s easy to discount this one—particularly given the fact that it’s, technically, filler—but someone has to give the Ox King some serious credit. During Gohan’s fight with Cell, Chichi is, predictably, going off on one of her “My little boy shouldn’t be fighting” tangents. By this point, the Ox King has gotten fed up with it, and tells her exactly what she’s been ignoring for the rest of the series: that Gohan and Goku are fighting for a better cause, and that the former isn’t a child anymore. The cherry on top is that he still manages to be the loving grandpa we’ve seen thus far (“Oh, sure, I wish it was me instead of him”) while doing so. Of course, this doesn’t take, but it’s the thought that counts, right?
  • Buu creates a massive ball of energy made from tiny bits of the energy of every planet he's destroyed. He's chucks it at Vegito. How does Vegito reflect it? Does he counter with a blast of his own? NO! He catches it, then starts running with it like damned football, faster and faster before punting it out of earth's atmosphere! WHY IS THS NOT HERE YET?!!!
  • Sean Schemmel's ABSOLUTELY EPIC screaming for Goku alone can rank among top of the charts! His contribution to the awesomeness of DBZ's scenes cannot be underestimated.
  • FUNimation, the most renowned anime dubbing company in America, did a pretty…terrible job of sticking to the original script from the Japanese in their first attempted dub of Dragon Ball Z. Of course, subsequent box set and video game dubs would show a marked interest in improving that. This all culminated when they decided for the Dragon Ball Kai dub to be truer to the original idea than they'd ever been before (of course, the voice actors getting better over a decade doesn't hurt). The point of this spiel? The following scene from Kai vindicated FUNimation forever:.
  • Pikkon. When Goku and Pikkon travel to Hell to fight Cell and the other villains, Pikkon is able to defeat Cell with only two hits, then knocks out both Freeza and King Cold with a single blow.
  • Dragon Ball Kai Uncut... oh man, the way Goku's transformation was handled was simply amazing. It made it an even more awesome moment than it was.
  • There is this scene in the fifth movie (The Incredible Mightiest vs. Mightiest) where Cooler, Frieza's older brother, goes One-Winged Angel and completely beats the life out of Goku. His power is such that the earth trembles and shatters as he boasts his strenght. Just then, a small bird lands in front of the badly beaten Goku, flaps it's wings once and becomes still. With great effort, Goku stands up, holds the bird with between his hands and let's out a mighty scream. Suddenly, the earth stops shaking; we see a pair of hands glow with a golden light before releasing a revitalized bird which flies past Cooler, now staring in horror as Goku has transformed into the Super Saiyan and is ready to give him a much deserved beatdown.
  • The very first Kamehameha. It was in that moment that Kame Sen'nin went from a perverted old rascal living on a tiny island with a sea turtle for company to a full blown Retired Badass. To elaborate, the kooky old geezer who gave Goku his magic cloud up and blew away a mountain THAT WAS ON FIRE. By accident.
  • It should be noted that the only two villains to have beaten Goku in a straight fight (As in, not get torn apart with him) are Taopaipai and King Piccolo.
  • Broly's epic beatdown on Goku, Vegeta, Gohan, Trunks, and Piccolo deserves special mention; not only were the Z-Fighters at full power, Broly WASN'T EVEN TRYING, and merely toys with them the entire movie.
  • There's a lot I'd be surprised if I simply missed this - but no one here has marked on a young Goku's epic defeat of the -Original- King Piccolo? Something about that moment, with so little left to lose, being all but broken, with one final gamble left...and bursting straight through the Demon King with quite possibly the most EPIC ki-powered punch ever. What seals the moment? the honest joy the young Goku expressed as he -somehow- succeeded in felling what was at that time, the single most powerful foe he had ever faced.
  • Goku's Super Kamehameha in Path To Power. Sure, it doesn't exactly compare to the other awesome moments, but it's still a fairly cool moment.
  • This troper's favorite Dragon Ball moment period was the episode when Trunks goes back to his original time and completely ANNIHILATES Androids 17 & 18, saving his world from the over 20 years of suffering. He then destroys Cell with the immortal line "THE NIGHTMARE IS OVER CELL, DIE!"
    • More than that, Trunks is clearly toying with Cell so he knows how outmatched he is before he dies.
    • Taunting him too. "You're so lame, sneaking around like the Boogieman!"
  • Captain Ginyuu deserves mention for the reveal of his Grand Theft Me power. The moment when you realize he'd actually been letting Goku beat the crap out of him so he'd be stuck in a weakened body after the switch is quite the Oh Crap feeling.
  • Vegeta's wrath!
  • No mention of Android 16? Unlike everyone else, this ginger had no soul and wasn't revived. He sacrifices his very existence to give Gohan the will to fight. Yet his reassuring smile never leaves his face even as Cell crushes him.
  • One moment that is overlooked is in the very first episode of Dragon Ball. When Goku and Bulma first meet go off to begin their quest, a Pterodactyl kidnaps Bulma. At this point, Goku does not know how to fly, and he even doesn't have the Nimbus yet. So what does he do? He uses Bulma's motorcycle to launch himself off a hill like a ramp in a similar way we saw a few minutes before, bashes the Pterodactyl's head with the Power Pole, and throws the Pole like a Javelin to pin Bulma safely on a cliff. This was just an early example of Goku's Determinator skill. No matter what happens, he will give it his all to keep his friends safe. (And Pray to Kami if you get in his way as most of the above examples show.)
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