Episode 92, "The Tears that Disappeared into the Sky! Gohan's Angry Super Awakening"
Synopsis: The news reporter and Mr. Satan take cover as Artificial Human 16 prepares to explode, but nothing happens. Kuririn explains that Dr. Brief defused the bomb in him. Cell blasts 16 into pieces and kicks his head away. Then he creates seven little duplicates of himself, which he calls Cell Juniors. He sics them on Gohan's father and friends. The little beings attack ferociously, eventually overwhelming their targets as Gohan looks on in dispair. 16's head asks Mr. Satan to get him close to Gohan. Mr. Satan agrees to when 16 appeals to his title of "champion", throwing 16's head near Gohan and Cell. 16 urges Gohan to use his real power. Cell stomps on 16's head, crushing him. Gohan unleashes his rage, transforming with enormous power. Everybody is shocked at his new form of Super Saiyan.
This episode contains my favorite moment in the entire franchise, Gohan's first Super Saiyan 2 transformation. I was looking forward to seeing and hearing how it would be handled for Kai, whether they would treat it with respect. Honestly, I enjoyed how it was done. This was definitely one of my favorite episodes of the show.
As I said before in my "Top 15 Dragon Ball/Z/GT Moments" article, my favorite, perhaps the defining moment for me in the franchise is Gohan's transformation into the next stage of Super Saiyan. Moreso than his father's first transformation into the legendary warrior, this is something I'd been waiting for for a long time: Gohan surpassing his father in a real way. The son surpasses the father, proving that Goku's ultimate attack is really his son. So long we have watched and waited for this. Cell has gone out of his way to get to this power out of his desire to have the ultimate opponent. Now, here it is, and boy is Cell going to be sorry.
I can sort of take or leave the Cell Juniors. They're just really powerful Saibamen to me. Though, I guess in a way, they're a lot more effective. Some of their attacks on Goku and friends looked and sounded pretty brutal.
The art and animation were mostly solid throughout, even with a few shots that bordered on awkwardness. Some parts of it are quite beautiful, like the touched up effects for when Gohan finally explodes in rage. There's this one shot of Piccolo as he's calling for Yamucha and Tenshinhan to go help Goku and it looks absolutely gorgeous and crisp. If only all of Kai was done so well. It really looks like they put some effort into this episode, art-wise. And I was always a fan of that moment where Gohan's hair begins to shuffle a bit, going up just a little, shaking, as he's at the precipice of his anger.
Then there's the music. Okay, so it's a bit of a mixed bag. During the battle with the Cell Juniors, the music used seems to emphasize the tragedy of the losing fighters. In Z, the Kikuchi music emphasized instead the terror of their overwhelming power. And while the Yamamoto piece used for Gohan's big moment is quite good and speaks to some of the same themes as "Unmei no Hi~Tamashii tai Tamashii" ("Day of Destiny~Spirit vs Spirit"), it doesn't quite have that extra oomph. However, I'm not disappointed, I just feel that the choice of the vocal piece in Z was a bit better. I'll still want a copy of the track used for the Kai version whenever possible, because it's quite good on its own.
People were talking about how Masako Nozawa's scream wasn't as good in Z when this episode first aired. I don't know what the hell they're talking about. Gohan's scream here was breathtakingly fantastic. Nozawa handled it differently, with a little build up before it unleashes completely, but it so fits the animation, it's not a detraction at all. I think it's every bit as good as the original scream. If only they could pair that scream up with "Unmei no Hi".
Er, which might happen now, as far as we know. Oh, that Kenji Yamamoto.
Anywhoozle, great episode. Pretty top-notch.
4.5 out of 5
You're fucked now, Cell.