With news that Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods will be seeing a North America release in the near future, I’ve been reminiscing in my childhood memories of DBZ. For fun, I thought, why not rank the Saiyans? I considered popularity, importance, fighting ability, and my own personal preference. I’m only including major Saiyans, so Tarble, Parags, and King Vegeta, among others, aren’t included.
Last: Pan — Easily one of the most annoying characters throughout the Dragon Ball franchise, if not the most annoying, and a major reason why many fans would like to forget about GT.
10. Goten — I’m not a big fan of the final arc of DBZ, and kid Goten and kid Trunks are two reasons as to why. Whereas Trunks had some great moments in the Android and Cell sagas, Goten’s best moments only come when he is fused with Trunks as Gotenks. There’s just too many better Saiyans in the series to put Goten any higher up.
9. Turles — The antagonist in one of my favorite DBZ movies, Turles was envisioned as the evil side of Goku: How would Goku have turned out if he didn’t hit his head as a toddler? He is a very strong fighter and with the help of the Tree of Might, almost beats the Z Fighters. Would rank towards the top on a list of best DBZ movie villains.
8. Nappa — Vegeta’s #2 showed how powerful he was in one of my favorite DBZ fights. He takes on the Z Fighters and easily dispatches them before Goku kicks his ass. He really doesn’t have any other reason to be placed higher.
7. Raditz — I couldn’t decide if Nappa of Raditz should be placed higher. Although Nappa is more powerful, I decided Raditz gets placed higher because he is Goku’s brother and is the first antagonist of Dragon Ball Z. I also really enjoyed his fight with Piccolo and Goku.
6. Bardock — One of my personal favorite Saiyans is Bardock, father of Goku. He had the guts to stand up to Frieza even in the face of impending doom. Unfortunately, his appearance in the series is very minimal and audiences don’t get to see too much of Bardock in action, making it so that he can’t get placed any higher.
5. Trunks — Even though his appearances in the Buu saga is forgettable, Trunks is a major character in the Android and Cell sagas. The way he gets rid of Frieza and King Cold could not be a better way for a character to be introduced. He also gets his own very awesome TV Special (like Bardock) that includes one of my favorite DBZ moments: his first transformation into a Super Saiyan after Gohan’s death.
4. Broly — The Legendary Super Saiyan comes in at number four on my list. He is the titular villain in one of the best DBZ films and his fight scenes are pretty darn awesome. Broly has always been one of my favorite villains from the series and is easily one of the most powerful. I mean, he IS legendary.
3. Gohan — Gohan’s growth from a cowardly child to one of the premier defenders of Earth is one of the biggest storylines of Dragon Ball Z. He is involved with many fights throughout the series and his fight with Cell is definitely one of the best of the series. Toriyama originally meant for Gohan to replace Goku as the protagonist of the series after the fight with Cell but ultimately decided to stick with Goku.
2. Vegeta — The Prince of all Saiyans comes up short (get it?) or the number one spot in my ranking. Although he is my favorite character, I had to put Goku ahead. Vegeta was involved with many epic battle throughout the series and his fight with Goku will always be my favorite. Like Gohan, Vegeta’s growth throughout the series is one of the best subplots.
1. Goku — Who else could take the top spot? Goku is the strongest and most popular character of the franchise and one of the most well known anime heroes ever. He is the undisputed strongest Saiyan ever and proves this through his many transformations and victories in battle throughout the series. He was featured in many great fights and saved the world plenty of times. I think for that, Goku deserves number one.
And this concludes my list. Let me know who your favorite Saiyan is in the comment section.
Austin is in his final year at the University of Florida studying English. He enjoys binge watching on Shark Tank, winning the Mortal Kombat, and occasionally stepping in for Batman when necessary.