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Future Trunks (未来のトランクス, Mirai no Torankusu)
Click here to see his appearance in Dragon Ball Super 

Voiced by (Japanese): Takeshi Kusao, Hiromi Tsuru (Baby)
Teen/Adult Trunks voiced by (English): Eric Vale (Most media), Alexis Tipton (Teen; Kakarot) (Funimation dub); Allistair Abell (Ocean dub); Skip Stellrecht (DBGT - Final Bout); Doug Rand (AB Groupe/"Big Green" dub); Sean Chiplock (Bang Zoom!/Toonami Asia dub for Super; one flashback)
Baby Trunks voiced by (English): Stephanie Nadolny (Z), Colleen Clinkenbeard (Kai) (Funimation dub); Alistair Abell (Ocean dub); Jodi Forrest (AB Groupe/"Big Green" dub)
Kid Trunks voiced by (Latin American Spanish): Gaby Willer (main voice), Rocío Garcel (Baby)
Adult Trunks voiced by (Latin American Spanish): Sergio Bonilla (main voice), Óscar Flores (Movie 8), Luis Fernando Orozco (Kai), Víctor Ruiz (Super ep. 67)
Kid Trunks voiced by (French): Brigitte Lecordier (Z), Anouck Hautbois (Super)
Adult Trunks voiced by (French): Mark Lesser
Kid Trunks voiced by (Italian): Monica Bonetto, Patrizia Mottola (Super from episode 45)
Adult Trunks voiced by (Italian): Simone D'Andrea

Vegeta and Bulma's son from an apocalyptic alternate timeline. With his father and most of the Z-Fighters dead at the hands of two monstrous Androids, he was raised by his mother and trained by Future Gohan, growing to be polite, selfless, and ruthlessly dedicated to ending the mechanical menace. He comes to the main timeline to warn Goku and his friends of their fate and search for a way to save his own timeline.

Twelve years later, Trunks returns to the main timeline, this time to ask for help against a threat far direr than the Androids ever were, one that has brought not just humanity, but all mortalkind, to the brink of extinction. And this time, it wears a familiar face…

While not referred to as such in any character dialogue, supplementary materials and merchandise typically append his name with "Future" in text to distinguish him from his younger counterpart.


For more information on his Online and Xenoverse incarnation, Time Patrol Trunks, go here.

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  • 11th-Hour Superpower:
    • In Dragon Ball Super Episode 61, he receives a new and never before seen Super Saiyan form, dubbed Super Trunks (not to be confused with his Ultra Super Saiyan form). It combines the traits of several other forms, having the aura and hair of a Super Saiyan 2, the build of an Ultra Super Saiyan, the white eyes of the Legendary Super Saiyan, and a blue tinge to his aura much like Super Saiyan Blue. The form is known as Super Saiyan Ikari, or Super Saiyan Rage, in Heroes. The writers, however, state the form is just a rage power boost of the Super Saiyan 2 form, similar to the one Vegeta got during his fight with Beerus ("That's my Bulma!"), where he was able to land some punches on the God of Destruction. However, he's able to easily re-attain the form and power up to it whenever he needs to, though it remains relatively consistent since each usage is followed by a lot of anger.
    • In Dragon Ball Super Episode 66, Trunks somehow, subconsciously, teaches himself how to use the Spirit Bomb (assuming that it was him; he's shocked when he sees it, and the people of Earth also could've been unconsciously sending their energy). He ends up embedding the collective energy into his sword in order to defeat Zamasu.
  • '90s Hair: In contrast with the Anime Hair sported by most Saiyans, he's introduced with a fashionable undercut.
  • Abusive Parents: While his mother Bulma is undoubtedly one of the Good Parents in Dragon Ball, Vegeta was much less so in Z. Highlights include hitting him the moment the two start to clash (which is often), constantly being dismissive of his son, and betraying his trust to fuel his own self-interest. Keep in mind, all of this was after he was aware Trunks was his son. Averted in Super, as although Vegeta is still definitely Good Is Not Nice, he's no longer dismissive of his son, encourages him a few times when he thinks Trunks needs it, and otherwise asserts that as a Saiyan, Trunks should strive to be the absolute best he can be for the sake of his world and loved ones.
  • Achievements in Ignorance: He's able to channel an aura reminiscent of Super Saiyan Blue AND create a Spirit Bomb, the latter of which he'd never even witnessed or heard of.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • His Super Saiyan transformation in the manga once he returns to his time is treated as Super Saiyan 2 in some video games as opposed to being just Super Saiyan despite never reaching the form.
    • In a reversal, in the manga story of History of Trunks, Trunks could already go Super Saiyan before Gohan was killed. Part of the drama of the anime adaptation was Trunks struggling to obtain his Super Saiyan form and not achieving it until he saw Gohan's mangled body.
    • Downplayed example considering Future Trunks doesn't get his Super Saiyan Rage form in the manga but Future Trunks's Super Saiyan 2 form in the Super manga is more powerful than in the anime. In the anime, Future Trunks is around as powerful as Super Saiyan 2 Goku and Vegeta in the Buu Saga. Manga Trunks has a mutated Super Saiyan 2 form that is almost on par with Super Saiyan 3 Goku. Instead of using Super Saiyan 3 to knock Trunks out, Goku uses Super Saiyan God. Also, he trained with Shin and pulled the Z-Sword. Even better, he fights Dabura with it, before he spits on it and shatters it, killing Old Kai.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Zig-Zagged. It was originally purple in the anime, but in his return in Super, he now sports blue hair, much like Bulma in the same series. Since both Trunks and Bulma had purple hair in the manga, it appears this was just to create consistency, although present Trunks keeps his original hair color.
  • Aesop Amnesia: A justified case, but still present in Super. After losing the peace that Trunks fought hard to finally earn in Z, he is quick to find relief that Goku and Vegeta are stronger than him, hoping that they'll take care of the problem for him, much like how he over-relied on Goku's strength when 17 and 18 first came about. Luckily, Vegeta calls him out on this, and the second time seems to stick.
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: When Beerus threatens to kill Bulma and destroy the Earth for breaking the law against time travel, he gets on his knees and begs for his mom's life before the God of Destruction. Unfortunately, he mistakes Whis for the god, giving Beerus a bad first impression.
  • All for Nothing: Despite all the pain and suffering Future Trunks and Mai were forced to endure under Goku Black and Future Zamasu, their efforts amounted to nothing after Infinite Zamasu murdered all the survivors and Future Zeno destroyed the entire timeline, including the afterlife, erasing everyone.
  • Alternate Self: To the main timeline's Trunks, although Future Trunks is the first version of Trunks the audience meets. While they are biologically identical, Future Trunks is a considerably different person than who his younger, main timeline counterpart becomes, something that he himself outlines in Super. Owing to being raised solely by Bulma and growing up in a battle-torn world, Future Trunks almost never has any of the haughty arrogance you see in younger Trunks, who is partly raised by Vegeta and has grown up somewhat spoiled in peaceful times. Additionally, since Goten never existed in his timeline, Future Trunks instead was closer bonded with his timeline's Gohan. The result is Future Trunks has a more humble and serious personality, and also has some of Gohan's favorite moves in his arsenal like the Masenko ki blast, things that can't be said for main timeline Trunks.
  • Ambiguous Situation: Even years after the arc has ended, it's ultimately unknown how Trunks was able to subconsciously create a Spirit Bomb, a technique he's neither seen nor likely heard of. And if he's not the one who made it, then it bears the question of how the people of Earth, while cheering for him, managed to send their energy even though Trunks hadn't directly asked for it, or how/why it manifested as a Spirit Bomb instead of going directly to Trunks himself. Made even more strange considering Goku has had to spend a good amount of consciously collecting energy while staying stationary, while this time it was gathered quickly as Trunks was fighting.
  • And This Is for...: Upon returning to his Bad Future and going after 17 and 18, he shouts, "This is for Gohan!" before killing 18 in the English dub of Z. In the manga and Kai, he obliterates 18 without a word and then mentions a variation of the line above to 17, who he promptly takes out shortly after.
  • The Apocalypse Brings Out the Best in People: Growing up After the End (and without Vegeta's influence) made this Trunks responsible, polite, and selfless.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • To the androids, Future 17 and 18, who are responsible for the complete destruction of his world and killing most of his friends and family, with most he had never gotten to properly know (and one, his sister, never got to be born). Trunks had dedicated his entire life to bringing them down, which eventually led to traveling back in time as a last resort. He finally gets revenge on all of them and frees his world from their terror.
    • Cell also qualifies, given his status as Trunks's Evil Counterpart and the embodiment of everything he fights against, being another time traveler from the future who seeks to spread evil rather than save lives. Trunks comes to learn he bears a measure of responsibility for the Bio-Android's reign of terror in the present, as he was only allowed to journey through time due to Trunks's time machine.
    • Goku Black/Zamasu is his mortal enemy in Super, representing the opposite of everything that Trunks dedicated his life to achieving. The Mad God destroys the very future world that Trunks tried so hard to protect, far worse than the androids did so nearly two decades ago, and murders Future Bulma and very nearly kills Mai before his eyes. Trunks is so bitterly imbued with hatred for Black that it triggers a new transformation in him. While it initially appeared that Black viewed Trunks as an annoyance rather than as a nemesis, it's later revealed that Trunks is the very reason why he began his crusade and possesses a special degree of hatred for him, due to Trunks's act of breaking the taboo of the gods by time traveling and changing history. It's later revealed Black/Zamasu had specifically chosen to prolong his attack on Earth to further punish Trunks.
  • The Artifact: His purple hair was, along with the Capsule Corp jacket, probably a nod to him being Bulma's son (since she has purple hair in color pages of the manga). Doesn't stick in the anime adaptations, since Bulma has blue hair.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: In the Super manga, Shin, out of respect for his heroism, dubs him an apprentice Supreme Kai.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: The Ultra Super Saiyan form does vastly increase his strength, but the massive muscle increase turns him into a Mighty Glacier, making it useless against a Lightning Bruiser like Cell; as Goku and Cell himself point out, all the power in the universe makes no difference if you can't catch your opponent.
  • Back from the Dead: He was killed by Cell after coming back from his attempt at self-detonation, before being revived with the Dragon Balls. This is actually noticeable for him since his timeline has no Dragon Balls in it.
  • Badass Arm-Fold: An overconfident Trunks displays this when fighting Perfect Cell.
  • Badass Baritone: In the English dub. While his voice is higher than Vegeta's, it's still quite gruff.
  • Badass Boast: After being called a sinner by Goku Black and Future Zamasu since he abused time-travel and created new timelines, he finally had enough of their crap:
    Future Trunks: If you say my choices make me evil, then that's what I'll be!
  • Badasses Wear Bandanas: In Super, he wears a red bandana around his neck.
  • Bad Liar:
    • As History Of Trunks shows, Trunks is far from being a talented liar, only unconvincingly agreeing with Bulma that Future Gohan showed up at their house coincidentally and the duo had no agreements to train, despite the opposite being very clearly true.
    • He seems to be aware of this by the time of Z when he comes back for the first time, as instead of trying to lie, he simply attempts to stick to the truth and politely refuses to say what he feels he can't, staying quiet otherwise.
    • He later attempts to unconvincingly hide his relation to Vegeta after loudly calling him father a couple of times, and unsurprisingly, the others are quick to tell him to not bother after this happens.
  • Barbarian Long Hair: When his hair is especially long after spending time at the Hyperbolic Time Chamber. It helps that it goes along with a massive muscle increase when he is an Ultra Super Saiyan.
  • Bash Brothers: Was this with Future Gohan, before Gohan's death.
  • Being Good Sucks: And holy crap is he the perfect example of this more than Future Gohan. As a teenager, Trunks really wanted to help Gohan defeat the androids, not understanding how strong they are. Even when trying to become a Super Saiyan, he didn't get enough push until Gohan dies (at least in the anime). This broke him as a result to the point of becoming a No-Nonsense Nemesis to his enemies. After spending time in the past fighting stronger versions of Androids 17, 18, and then later Perfect Cell, things finally seem to go his way after he destroys all the androids and later prevents Majin Buu's revival. That is until Goku Black attacked his world, murdered his mother and several innocent people, and nearly killed Future Mai. After seeing Gohan's family for the first time in the past, he breaks down that he would never have a peaceful life since his happiness was stolen from him by Black. When he returns to the future for the second time to fight Goku Black and Future Zamasu with the help of Goku and Vegeta, he is told by them that it's his fault that the Earth is destroyed because of his time-traveling. This causes him to snap and gain a new Super Saiyan form that still isn't strong enough to fend them off. And then when Goku Black and Future Zamasu fused to create Fused Zamasu, he manages to cut him down using the energy of everyone still alive on the planet, only for Fused Zamasu to become an Eldritch Abomination of multiversal proportions who kills the rest of humanity. Goku is forced to summon Future Zeno who not only destroys Fused Zamasu, but the entire timeline.
  • Berserk Button: The androids in general just naturally piss him off. The sheer sight of them sends him into a rage due to them killing mostly everyone he cares about and his mentor Gohan. He ends up managing this much better by the time of Super where he sees that Android 18 is now friends with the Z Fighters.
  • Beware the Nice Ones:
    • Like his mentor, Gohan, he's shy, polite, kind, and values the sanctity of life. Also like his mentor, if you violate that sanctity in front of him, he will do his damnedest to end you. And, as other tropes attest, he's perfectly capable of ruthlessness.
    • Trunks accepts a lot of responsibility for what in the end just isn't his fault, taking more and more blame for what goes wrong just because he happens to be present when something goes wrong. However, there is a limit to this, as Future Zamasu and Goku Black learned they blamed the deaths of all the Earthlings on him, since Goku Black only chose Trunks's timeline because the Saiyan broke the taboo on time travel. After hearing this, Trunks rightfully snaps and gains a new transformation.
  • BFS: The sword Future Trunks creates after absorbing the Spirit Bomb is this. It's bigger than him.
  • Big Brother Worship: Future Trunks viewed Future Gohan as a big brother and highly respected him.
    • During the Goku Black Saga, his younger counterpart respects him and similarly treats him like a big brother.
  • Big Eater:
    • He is the only known Saiyan who subverts this - even his younger self eats more than he does. He is actually surprised when he sees Goku and Gohan eat large quantities of food after coming out of the Hyperbolic Time Chamber. In History of Trunks, he does try to mimic Gohan who eats plates full of food.
    • Super very quietly gives a good reason why he's learned to control his appetite - there just isn't much food in his time, and his intrinsic kindness makes him share what he can find with those he cares about.
    • Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot actually shows him wolfing down food as much as Goku, Gohan, Vegeta, his main timeline self, and Goten, showing that while he eats as much as they do, it's not as messily as how Goku tends to eat.
  • The Big Guy: His fights mostly showcase his raw strength. His fight with Perfect Cell, however, deconstructs this.
  • Big "NO!": In the English dub, as well as in Kai when 18 was seconds upon activating 16.
    If they set that android free, it'll be the end of us! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
  • Boomerang Comeback: He can throw his sword in such a way that it returns to his hand.
  • Breakout Character:
    • His importance in video games is something to be amazed at. That's where his attacks got named in the first place. In Final Bout, he's treated as a separate character even though there are other two grown-up Trunks in the game already. In Shin Budokai and Heroes, Trunks is The Protagonist and a Supporting Protagonist respectively. Also, the latest video games are fond of giving the Super Saiyan 3 transformation to other Saiyans besides Goku but they're just thrown in with no proper build-up. Trunks' transformation, however, is an important plot ticket in Heroes and got an animation just for it. There's also his involvement in Dragon Ball Online and Xenoverse as Time Patrol Trunks, where he serves as the main Non-Player Companion teacher. He once again takes center stage in the mobile game Dragon Ball Z: Dokkan Battle, where he's the Non-Player Character protagonist for the main quest storyline.
    • During the Cell Saga, in Japan's Character Poll, Trunks ranked higher than both Vegeta and Piccolo.
    • After decades of fans wanting to see more of him, Future Trunks finally returns in Super with his own saga. He gets massive power-ups to keep up with Goku and Vegeta who had left everyone else behind and gains an entirely new Super Saiyan form.
  • Break the Haughty:
    • In "The History of Trunks" when he becomes a Super Saiyan for the first time, Future Trunks becomes arrogant and recklessly takes on Future Androids 17 and 18, despite Future Bulma's protests. Trunks promptly gets his ass handed to him by the Androids, realizes that he should have listened to his mother, and later agrees with Future Bulma to use the time machine.
    • After Perfect Cell incapacitates Vegeta, Trunks unleashes his Super Saiyan Grade Three form, acting very pompous by stating he hid this form from his father because he didn't want to hurt his pride, believing he surpassed him, as well as believing he could win against Cell. However, when Trunks begins to get beat down by him, he then mocks him by telling him that his dad knew about the form the whole time, but he didn't use it because of the major drawbacks of stamina usage and speed that Trunks was blinded to thanks to his arrogance and inexperience. With his pride broken, Trunks concedes the fight and asks Cell to kill him, which he agrees to before changing his mind and organizes the Cell Games to give humanity a chance before destroying the planet.
  • Bring Help Back: The reason why Future Trunks returns to the past. Instead of warning the others about an impending Bad Future, he goes to get help to fight Goku Black.
  • Broken Ace: He's a Master Swordsman, the second canonical Super Saiyan to appear, for a time was one of the strongest Z Fighters, as well as a general Nice Guy and Ideal Hero. However, underneath that badass exterior lies a grief and turmoil over the Bad Future he grew up in, especially over losing his mentor Gohan and later his mother Bulma. Super has him riddled with guilt and heavy implications of Survivor's Guilt and PTSD.
  • Broken Pedestal: Having grown up without Vegeta around, he's initially happy to meet his father... until he discovers that Vegeta is an arrogant, self-absorbed Jerkass who is perfectly willing to put the safety of the entire world at risk for the sake of a good and challenging fight. However, the pedestal is eventually rebuilt after he learns that Vegeta went medieval on Cell after he was killed. By the end of Super, they have some very sweet father-son bonding moments.
  • Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu:
    • The first time after Trunks turns Super Saiyan, he tries to take on the androids. He gets beaten to within an inch of his life and very nearly died.
    • Despite reaching power levels that dwarf even Perfect Cell, he still can't beat the android since he's too slow to hit him. In the end, Trunks is forced to surrender and kicks himself for being so stupid.
    • Trunks's ending is even more bitter in the timeline Cell came from. Trunks kills the androids using the remote control that Bulma built in the past to deactivate them. When he's about to return to the past and tell everyone the news, Cell ambushes him and murders him before stealing his time machine. So that world is free of the androids, but all of its powerful defenders are dead and the Saiyans are extinct unless you count Tarble.
    • This is Future Trunks throughout his own saga in Dragon Ball Super:
      • After Goku Black does his utmost to kill Mai and mocks Trunks about her apparent death, he loses control and attacks Goku Black in a Super Saiyan-fueled rage. Goku Black laughs and beats the shit out of Trunks, and he would have died if he didn't find his sword at the last second and use it to create a distraction.
      • Later, despite his valiant attempt against Future Zamasu, he can't harm the fallen Supreme Kai since he's an immortal. Then, after getting a new form that greatly increased his power, he puts all his energy into a Galick Gun that blasts Goku Black across the country and tries to self-destruct on Future Zamasu, thinking that there has to be a limit to his regeneration. He gets stabbed in the back by Goku Black, who mockingly tells him that his attack may leave a bruise.
      • Both Vegeta and he combined their Galick Guns to deflect an energy blast from Fused Zamasu. Not only is Fused Zamasu unharmed, he takes Vegeta down with one hit.
      • And as a final kick to the nuts, after splitting Fused Zamasu in half and seemingly winning the day thanks to using the energy of all the survivors on Earth, Fused Zamasu's spirit fuses with the multiverse and kills everyone Trunks tried to save except Future Mai. Then Future Zeno outright wipes out the timeline, destroying everything including the afterlife. So all Trunks' efforts were literally for nothing.
  • The Bus Came Back: After a lengthy absence since the end of the Cell Saga, he finally returns in Super in the "Future Trunks Saga".
  • Butterfly of Doom:
    • Some minor examples during the Android/Cell Saga. His presence in the past results in, among other things, Goku contracting the heart virus six months later than he was originally supposed to and Androids 17 and 18 activating Android 16.
    • He is hit by this hard in the Future Trunks Saga. Because Goku lived through his heart virus thanks to the medicine Trunks gave him, it set up the events for Goku to meet Zamasu, who becomes obsessed with Goku to the point of stealing his body with the Super Dragon Balls. Furthermore, Goku would never have even met Zamasu if Trunks didn't return to the past again to get help fighting Goku Black, since Goku only went to U10 to see if Zamasu was Black, leading to a Stable Time Loop. Both Black and Future Zamasu rubs this in Trunks's face when they call him a sinner for breaking the time law created by the gods.
  • But Now I Must Go: After everything with Cell is dealt with, Trunks returns to his timeline to take care of the remaining androids (and his timeline's Cell). After his return in Super, he and Future Mai do the same as well.
  • Calling Parents by Their Name: Trunks would often call Vegeta by his first name, which is due to not wanting to reveal to Vegeta that he’s his son from the future. After the two got closer and Trunks no longer had to keep things a secret, he begins calling Vegeta “father”.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: When Dr. Gero almost kills Bulma and his infant present-day self, Trunks, after saving them, confronts Vegeta and berates him for not lifting a finger to help his family... only to be shocked when Vegeta tells him to his face that he doesn't care one bit about "that foolish woman and her blasted child" before pushing past him.
  • Calling Your Attacks: Zigzagged. When it comes to his own unique attacks, he's actually pretty quiet, to the point that they only get named in the video games. But when it comes to the moves of others that he's learned - such as Gohan's Signature Move, Masenko, along with Vegeta's Final Flash and Galick Gun - he usually calls them out.
  • Character Development: Trunks notably starts out as a full-fledged badass hero (at least from the audience's perspective), but throughout the franchise, he experiences some poignant development. The Android Saga does quite a number on Trunks as he steadily realizes that his actions in the past will have no consequence in his original timeline, and much of his characterization begins to revolve around his troubled relationship with Vegeta.
    • In the History of Trunks prequel special, we see Trunks as a naive, somewhat arrogant, and headstrong boy woefully out of his depth against the Androids. The horrors he witnessed at their hands, however, royally shake the innocence out of him.
    • After going into the Time Chamber to train with Vegeta, Trunks later emerges as almost a completely different person (his hair growth notwithstanding). It seems that spending a full year with nobody but your unpleasant, emotionally abusive past-timeline father - whom you're desperately trying to placate for some semblance of a relationship - is not hugely conducive to one's mental health. During the island battle against Cell, Trunks uncharacteristically allows his father to showboat out of fear that stepping in would wound Vegeta's pride. Trunks eventually does intervene with his full power, but after it's already too late. This is the single instance where his normal pragmatic approach was nowhere to be seen. However, Trunks is still pragmatic in general, so this was more a result of Parental Issues than anything - once their father-son relationship improves, it's no longer an issue.
    • Trunks goes through this over the course of Z. By the time he arrives in the present during Z, Trunks is utterly convinced that it is impossible to fight the androids without Goku present, someone both he and his timeline's Bulma view as a paragon of strength, as such, he places no value in his own strength against the androids thanks to various beatdowns. He similarly spends most of his time around others, neglecting to do much on his own. However, over the course of training with Vegeta and dealing with Cell, Trunks learns that he is strong, and is capable enough to handle the threats in his own time, and doesn't need to rely on others to do so. He thanks everyone for helping him reach this realization.
      • Thanks to Goku Black inflicting what the Androids did, but worse, Trunks somewhat relapses into this mindset in Super; he doesn't believe anything he can do will defeat Goku Black, but the help of Goku, Vegeta, and friends could very well do so. However, Vegeta calls him out on this and states that there will always be threats, and he can't ever be complacent with his own strength... after this, Trunks once again believes in himself to do what must be done.
  • Characterization Marches On: Downplayed. When first introduced, Trunks is portrayed as a confident, serious, merciless warrior who will take the first opportunity to strike down his opponent. However, as the next few episodes show, he is actually a polite, shy, and well-meaning young man who treats just about everyone with respect. Ultimately, Trunks is still serious and merciless in battle against enemies he wishes dead, but simply because he's pragmatic rather than confident and/or arrogant.
  • Character Tics: Trunks can often be seen with his hands in his pockets, most commonly in Akira Toriyama's supplementary artwork.
  • Classic Antihero: He is even more this than Gohan. Trunks is constantly weighted down by his failures like being unable to beat the androids, his failings at stopping Cell since he didn't understand the Fatal Flaw of his Ultra Super Saiyan form, and his inability to stop Black from killing everyone he cares for, including his mom. He hits rock bottom at the end of his own saga since he loses his entire timeline.
  • Clipped-Wing Angel: A rare heroic example when he goes Ultra Super Saiyan against Perfect Cell. He becomes stronger than Cell, but his speed takes such a massive hit that he can't hit the android.
  • Combat Compliment: After Goku parries his sword with just one finger, Trunks is in awe of Goku, saying that he's fantastic. In Super, he's left speechless for several seconds when he sees Super Saiyan 3.
  • Combat Pragmatist:
    • Bless him, he tries to fight according to "common sense" in a series where fighters tend to hold back until the last moment and prefer to seek challenge in a fight. He does have a sense of honor, but that's for friendly sparring matches or tournament bouts only; when it comes to saving innocent lives, he'll do whatever works, and when he is stronger than his opponent, it does not last long. Future Trunks is not interested in holding back, seeking a challenge, a fair fight, or sparing his opponents. This is justified as a byproduct of the Bad Future he grew up in. Unfortunately for him, he's in a Shōnen series. This is seen clearly against Frieza, where instead of letting him power up to 100% like Goku did, he cut him in half the minute he was distracted (in the manga at least) and kills King Cold without trying to let him transform, if he was able to. He kills Present Cell in his Larva form before he can awaken, and he's also the only one who thinks to attack Cell during his Transformation Sequence. It didn't work (apparently transforming generates one heck of a ki barrier), but points for trying. He later suggests throwing a senzu bean to Goku during his match with Cell when he starts getting winded, but this is shot down soon enough.
    • When sparring with Vegeta in Super, Trunks tries to fake him out by using his Ultra Super Saiyan mode. Vegeta angrily berates him for resorting to such a useless transformation and charges to punch him in the face...which is exactly what Trunks was counting on. He drops back to Super Saiyan 2 (making himself both faster and a smaller target) in order to throw his own punch while Vegeta's guard is down. Unfortunately, the sheer difference in power between Trunks and Vegeta (especially with the latter in Super Saiyan Blue form) makes it useless. But this was the only move Future Trunks made that actually impressed his father.
    • He commonly displays this against Black out of necessity since Black is ultimately far stronger in terms of power, Trunks has no choice but to choose his fights and create distractions, attempting to use openings to score hits rather than simply overpowering him, which is pretty much his only hope to stand a chance of surviving. Notably, this is something Black is very irritated about during their clashes.
  • Combined Energy Attack: He manages to subconsciously use the Spirit Bomb, or at least something like it, and then infuses its power into his sword to kill Fused Zamasu.
  • Cool Sword: When he first arrives, he uses a sword until he breaks it fighting Android 18. In Super, the sword returns, although he doesn't really need it. He carries it around for comfort.
  • Cosmic Plaything: Where to begin? Despite the boy trying to live his life the best way he knows how, the multiverse seems to hate him and go out of his way to make his life a living hell. He was already born into a world where the androids killed everyone he loves except for his mother (and is later temporarily killed by Cell), and then Black shows up and not only wrecks his world again but also murders his mother and seemingly his last friend Mai. Even when he finally seems to win, his entire timeline is wiped out by Future Zeno, after Infinite Zamasu killed everyone in it. He and Mai are forced to move into a new timeline created by Whis where they have to live with another version of themselves who didn't suffer such tragedies. Yeah, it really sucks to be Future Trunks.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Two versions of him experience this: One gets shot through the chest and lies on the ground immobilized while he chokes on his blood and bleeds out. The other gets slowly choked to death before his neck snaps.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • First to Frieza and King Cold. Then gets to perform an ultra-satisfying one on the Androids and later on Cell after returning to his own time.
    • Repeatedly on the receiving end from the androids in both his own timeline and the future ones.
    • Also repeatedly on the receiving end against Goku Black.
  • Dangerous Forbidden Technique: He learned the Evil Containment Wave after watching a video of Piccolo doing it and manages to trap Future Zamasu. It didn't kill him, just exhausted him, but since he didn't have the talisman, Zamasu was able to escape.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Or technically future in this case, where he comes from a post-apocalyptic world where all the other main characters have died, and he's all that's left as the protector of humanity.
  • Death by Irony: When he fails to kill Cell in his Ascended Saiyan form, he says that Cell can destroy him. Cell spares him on the prospect that he could get stronger before the tournament. Trunks becomes stronger in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber and sees Cell destroyed when Cell self-destructs. When Cell is reconstructed, Trunks is immediately killed by his first attack.
  • Depending on the Writer: Depending on the dub you're watching, Cell kills Trunks using either Frieza's Death Beam (mostly in North America) or Tien's Dodon Ray (mostly in Asian countries). It doesn't help that both are yellow ki-attacks released using the pointing finger.
  • Determinator: One major trait about Trunks. He will never give up despite the odds:
    • He battled the androids for half a decade, barely surviving each encounter. The androids find this trait amusing, which is part of the reason they keep him alive.
    • Despite all his failures, Future Trunks keep fighting against Goku Black and later Future Zamasu. By the end of the saga, Fused Zamasu is sick of him:
      Fused Zamasu: Back for more, Trunks, yet again?!
  • Deus Angst Machina:
    • He cannot catch a break. Since he was a baby, his life was ruined by the androids who killed his father, his mother's friends, and later his mentor Gohan. Even after becoming a Super Saiyan, he still couldn't beat the androids and had to journey to the past to gain the experience and power needed to finally kill them and free the future, and that is after he's killed by a sneak attack by Super Perfect Cell. And then, just as it looks like his life was finally being put back together and he stopped Majin Buu from being reborn, Goku Black comes to Earth and destroys his world yet again. This time, his mom, his only living family, is murdered and he thinks his friend Mai has also been killed. He later loses his [[spoiler: entire timeline to Fused Zamasu and Future Zeno. Future Mai is literally the only thing he has left.
    • The Future Trunks from Cell's future got it even worse. After deactivating and killing the androids, he refuels the time machine to tell everyone the good news. He is ambushed and murdered by Cell.
  • Deuteragonist: In the "Future Trunks" Saga, he is the third or possible second main character alongside Goku and Vegeta, since it is his world that is in peril from Goku Black.
  • Didn't See That Coming: One of the primary reasons why Goku, Vegeta, and Future Trunks lost their rematch with Goku Black. They were only expecting him to be as strong as Super Saiyan 3 Goku, not to power up to the point where he can challenge a Super Saiyan Blue, and that is before he transformed into a Super Saiyan Rose. Things went further downhill once Future Zamasu arrives, which shocked everyone since they thought Goku Black and Zamasu were the same person, and he powered up and is able to challenge Goku at full power. To add their trouble, Future Zamasu is an immortal.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?:
    • The reaction he invoked in the cast when they witnessed him slice Mecha Frieza in half.
    • In Super, he combines the might of everyone on the planet, including Goku and Vegeta, and he vertically cuts Fused Zamasu in half. Unfortunately, this turns into a case of Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu after Fused Zamasu returns and assimilates with the multiverse, becoming 'justice itself'.
  • The Dog Bites Back: Trunks, after taking much of Vegeta's abuse, finally decides to retaliate against his father by sending him to be A Twinkle in the Sky after the latter gives Cell the go-ahead to absorb 18.
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: In the manga, he was able to transform into a Super Saiyan when training with Gohan (which makes the latter's death All for Nothing when he decides to face the Androids alone). The History of Trunks TV Special opts to have him struggle to obtain the transformation right until Gohan's death.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: After growing up in an apocalyptic world, seeing your mentor and the closest thing to a big brother die, fleeing every day from the killing machines responsible for all of the above, going back in time to a world where the heroes are still alive and to find a solution to make his timeline better, maybe earning the respect of the father he never knew, and confronting another horrible killing machine from the future (even dying briefly). With the Earth saved, he finally earns his father's respect, returns to the future to exact sweet revenge on the androids, and finally waits to defeat Cell, saving his world and allowing for the world to rebuild itself. A pity then that it didn't last, but even though it took his entire timeline to be wiped out in order to kill Fused Zamasu, Whis does him a sorely needed favor and tells Future Beerus about what is to happen, thus creating a new timeline where Zamasu's rebellion is stopped before it can start, giving Future Trunks and Mai a second chance and finally giving them their happy ending.
    • This is done expressly in Z. Trunks' initial plan was to travel back in time to either find some way to deactivate the Androids or bring Goku back to the future with him to take care of them for him. The Trunks from Cell's home timeline did exactly that, returning from the past with Gero's remote to neutralize the Androids without having to defeat them. That Trunks was then killed by Cell when he stole the time machine. The Trunks in the main storyline, however, trains in the past until he's powerful enough to defeat the Androids without needing to rely on a shortcut. This strength also allows him to overpower Cell, meaning he only gets to survive the events of the Cell Saga when he puts in the work.
  • Easily Forgiven: Despite Vegeta's abusive treatment towards him and betraying his trust, Trunks ultimately parts with his father on good terms with no bad blood between them. Notably, this was before Vegeta's Papa Wolf moment was even known to Trunks (Yamcha told him not long before he left). Though this is implied to be partially because he has a much deeper understanding of Vegeta than before compared to knowing the bare minimum.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Remember Frieza? The guy who took a really long time to defeat back on Namek? Trunks introduces himself by instantly killing him.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Trunks tends to be very literal with the names for his attacks, even if he never says them out loud, such as Burning Attack and Heat Dome Attack, which are just that. Downplayed in that there's others, such as Shining Slash and Sword of Hope, but they do still describe what he's doing.
  • Expy: A Future Badass comes back in time to save the present from a group of killer cyborgs? Where have we heard that before? This version of Trunks and Bulma also visually resembles John and Sarah Connor as they appear in the second movie.
  • Failure Hero: Poor Future Trunks gets hit with this hard in the Future Trunks Saga. For over a year, he fights Goku Black and loses every time despite his best efforts. Black also gets stronger every time they battle, making victory for him more impossible. After going to the past to get help, Goku, Vegeta, and he still can't beat Black and Black has a powerful ally, Future Zamasu, who is an immortal. During their second battle, he learns that Black specifically chose his timeline to punished him for breaking the time taboo and creating a new Time Ring when he saved Goku from the heart virus. All this frustration and anger causes him to transform into a new form of Super Saiyan...which only puts him on par with Black and Future Zamasu, and he's quickly overwhelmed. Then, just when it seems he finally won against all the odds thanks to unconsciously creating a Spirit Bomb from all the survivors on Earth, merging it into his sword, and slicing Fused Zamasu in half, it all comes crashing down when Fused Zamasu's soul fuses with the multiverse and kills everyone in it except for a named few. What's left is erased by Future Zeno, leaving Trunks's timeline nothing but an empty void. Except for Future Mai, Trunks literally lost everything.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: He's well-aware that anything he does in the past will have no effect in his future, but merely create a better alternate timeline. He doesn't care, since he wants to have at least one world saved from the androids.
  • Family Theme Naming: The Briefs family (Bulma/Bloomer, Dr. Briefs, Trunks, Bra) are all named after undergarments.
  • Fantastic Racism: Justified, as the only androids Trunks knew were malicious, world destroying killers who terrorized the world for years on end. As such, whenever he sees an android, he is immediately under the impression they are mass murdering machines, and is outright against helping a grievously wounded 16 begging for help despite the latter having never caused any harm to the heroes or humanity.
  • Fatal Flaw:
    • His Daddy Issues with Vegeta end up costing him big-time; he deliberately holds back against Semi-Perfect Cell when he finds 18 to avoid hurting Vegeta's feelings, which lets Cell become complete.
    • His impatience is a problem when it comes to dealing with the Androids. He wants to stop them as soon as possible, meaning he rushes into a fight he can't win and nearly dies for it. His return to the past is likewise an attempt to find a quicker way to defeating the Androids, either from something in Gero's lab or by recruiting the past's Goku. In the main timeline, Cell's involvement forces Trunks to grind out the training to surpass him and the Androids, which is why he's able to defeat the former when he comes to hijack the time machine instead of being killed like the version of him that used a shortcut.
  • Foil:
    • Kid Trunks become this to him after the timeline split apart. Kid Trunks is irresponsible, spoiled, playful during battle, and somewhat arrogant. Future Trunks is very responsible, humble, a Combat Pragmatist, and will kill to ensure peace. Kid Trunks is affected by living during a time of peace with both of his parents, while Future Trunks lived After the End where the androids killed all his loved ones, including his father, Vegeta, and his mentor, Gohan.
    • To his father, Vegeta. Vegeta loves to challenge himself and fight, even if it means risking the world. Trunks, who grew up in a Bad Future, doesn't care to fight fair or challenging himself, especially when the world is in danger. Trunks is also willing to put the needs of the many before his own desire, while Vegeta only cares about himself and what he wants, at least before character development hits him.
  • Fond Memories That Could Have Been: As Future Trunks watches Gohan play with Pan, he is seized with a vision of Future Bulma and Mai having dinner with him. Something that is no longer possible since Goku Black murdered Bulma and Mai (he thinks).
  • Freak Out: He has a major one when he wakes up and sees Goku. He immediately attacks him, thinking that he's Goku Black, the monster who murdered his mom, Mai, and destroyed his world.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Anime and Bojack Unbound movie only, where he's a hit with the squirrel population and pink alien rodents at least...
  • Future Badass: He wipes out both Frieza and his father King Cold, who up until that time were considered the supreme Big Bads of the universe, in his first appearance.

  • Genius Bruiser: A variant. His fighting style is mostly brute force, but he's quite intelligent out of battle seeing how he's noted in supplemental material to enjoy tinkering machines and shown helping his mother with the time machine. In Super, he becomes much smarter in terms of fighting. He is able to trick Black several times to either escape or attack and even learns the Evil Containment Wave faster than Goku, although he did have Mai there to help him aim into a very, very large pot.
  • Get It Over With: After figuring out Cell was just playing with him due to Ultra Super Saiyan not being fast enough to reach Cell's speed, Trunks completely gives up and outright tells Cell to kill him. The only reason Trunks ends up surviving is by Cell's amusement that he and Vegeta had grown so strong in a day, and wants others to do so for a proper challenge.
  • Go-Karting with Bowser: Almost literally, except with Beerus. In the manga version of Super, he takes a breather by playing a lighthearted kart racing game with his own past self, Beerus, Goku, Vegeta and the Pilaf Gang. Future Trunks wins the race after Present Trunks lobs a turtle shell at Beerus from behind. Beerus, naturally, throws a tantrum and destroys his controller. For Future Trunks, it was the first time he was allowed to have fun and forget his worries in a long, long time.
  • Golden Super Mode: Can go Super Saiyan, and is in fact the second character to ever do so. By the time of Super, he's gained the ability to go Super Saiyan 2. Zamasu and Black driving him too far over the Rage-Breaking Point and he ascends to a new, Legendary Super Saiyan-like form.
  • Good Is Not Soft: While Trunks is normally polite, caring, and greatly values life, he is also very practical-minded and can be ruthless when the situation calls for it. He rarely speaks or engages in boastful behavior during combat, and he always fights with his full strength, seeking not the defeat of his enemies, but their deaths (particularly before they might fight back, like Present Cell). Notable examples of this aspect includes attacking Vegeta, his own father, because the latter wanted Cell to become Perfect, and before accepting him as an ally, threatening to destroy Android 16 without hesitation if he ever stepped out of line. He also didn't hesitate to kill a mortally wounded and surrendering King Cold as he begged for his life. Two of the deaths he's dished out also involved cutting the villain in half.
  • Greater Need Than Mine: The main reason he's so desperate for this timeline to be different than his. He wants a world without the androids, even if he can't live in that world.
  • Groin Attack: Ends up cutting the corrupted Fused Zamasu from the crotch upwards.
  • Growing Muscles Sequence: Gets a very dramatic one when he goes Super Saiyan 3rd Grade. Unfortunately, the extra mass slows him down.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: If he ever brings a sword to a battle, and he is stronger than his opponent, chances are you're gonna be bisected in half. Frieza and Fused Zamasu learned this the hard way.
  • Happy Ending Override: Despite defeating Cell and the Androids and living eight years of peace in his time, a new enemy named Black now threatens the future he's sworn to protect.
  • Harmful to Minors: His entire backstory falls under this.
  • Healing Hands: Since he trained as a Supreme Kai's attendance in the Super manga he gains the ability to heal people with his hands. He didn't know he had this ability until Shin mentioned how he couldn't heal anymore since he went from being an attendant to a full-fledged Supreme Kai after his masters were killed by Buu. He uses his ability to heal Goku so he can fight Fused Zamasu.
  • He Is All Grown Up: When he returns in Super, he's in his 30s, while in Z, he was 17-18.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords:
    • His Weapon of Choice is a sword, sharp enough to slice through Mecha Frieza like butter.
    • In Super, after the blade of his sword gets destroyed, Trunks replaces it with ki, which later expands as he subconsciously charges up a Spirit Bomb into the blade, resulting in the Spirit Sword capable of cutting up Fused Zamasu.
  • Heroic Bastard: His parents were not married and he is very heroic.
  • Heroic BSoD: When he fails to defeat Perfect Cell with the realization that his Ultra Super Saiyan form is too slow, he gives up all hope and promptly tells Cell to kill him. Luckily, Cell is more interested in the Super Saiyan's sudden enormous strength to oblige.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Future Trunks is willing to blow himself up to kill Future Zamasu, thinking that his immortality must have limits. Goku Black stabs him in the back before he can make the attempt. A good thing too, as this would have most likely been a Senseless Sacrifice.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: He doesn't take the revelation that Super Saiyan third grade is not only ineffectual, but that both Cell and Vegeta can achieve the form but chose not to because they realized its flaws. He immediately berates himself and compares himself to a child for the lack of awareness, but continues beating himself up over it and his lost opportunity to beat Cell a few episodes later.
  • Hero of Another Story: He's The Hero of the Bad Future storyline that was detailed through a special OVA and a bonus chapter in the manga. He was also able to stop Majin Buu's revival in his time by defeating both Dabura and Babidi by himself.
  • Hero-Worshipper: Trunks makes it no question that he is a big fan of Goku, being very impressed by the brief demonstration of skill shown upon their brief meeting and puts a lot of his faith in him from that point onwards. Notably, he's one of the very few people who don't get upset with or exasperated with Goku for any of his actions. This undeniably furthers the rift between him and Vegeta, being his rival and all.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Future Gohan was his mentor and like a big brother to him.
  • Honor Before Reason: After Cell becomes perfect, Trunks deliberately stands back and watches while Vegeta is getting his ass kicked because he knows Vegeta is too prideful to want his help, despite Krillin literally begging him to do something, as well as the fact that Vegeta's pride is exactly what got them into this mess in the first place. He only steps in to fight after Vegeta is beaten unconscious. Before then, he refuses to use his full power to kill Semi-Perfect Cell when he finds 18 because he didn't want to hurt his father's feelings. This allows Cell to become complete.
  • Hope Bringer: He's called everyone's hope by Future Bulma since he's the only one who can use the time machine and bring help back from the past to fight against Black.
  • Horrifying the Horror:
    • His slaying of Frieza causes King Cold to show visible fear and he reduces the tyrant to begging for his life before promptly finishing him off.
    • In the Future Trunks Saga, he traps Future Zamasu using the Evil Containment Wave. While it fails, thanks to Goku forgetting to bring the Paper Talisman needed to keep him contained in the jar, Zamasu is nonetheless completely horrified and shaken by the incident, realizing that mortals are not "insignificant worms" as he thought they were and Goku and co. do pose a legitimate threat to his and Goku Black's plans.
  • Humans Are Special: With Future Zamasu continuously going on about how pathetically weak and inferior mortals were compared to the Gods, Trunks then unleashes the Mafuba on him, telling him this was the power of mortals and they were not to be underestimated, and seals Zamasu in the jar. Too bad he didn't stay in because Goku forgot to bring the seal and Roshi didn't put the seal on the pot. He does it again while slicing Fused Zamasu in half with the Spirit Bomb Sword:
    Trunks: This is the power of mortals fighting for each other! The power of believing in something bigger than just you!!
  • Hurting Hero: Grew up in a world ruled by two merciless androids, found his mentor Gohan lying dead in the rain, and then fought the androids himself to no avail. Super adds to his misery by overriding his happy ending after he kills Cell, and introduces Goku Black who completely destroys the world, killing his mom and his friend Mai before his eyes (so he thinks). When he meets their present counterparts, he's clearly heartbroken. It REALLY sinks in when he reunites with Present Gohan and meets Videl and Baby Pan. Trunks reflects that he never got to see Gohan so happy, and the thought of having that kind of life stolen from him by Goku Black causes him to break down in tears.
  • Iaijutsu Practitioner: He proves this against Frieza's minions when he defeats them.
  • Iconic Outfit: His black wife-beaters, dark gray cargo pants, orange boots, purple Capsule corp jacket and even his Cool Sword are easily recognizable.
  • Iconic Sequel Character: He did not appear in the series until the interim between the Frieza and Android sagas, but Future Trunks is easily one of the series' most popular and recognizable characters.
  • Icy Blue Eyes: An unusual case since Trunks's eyes are natural blue unlike all the other Saiyans. Even still, when he becomes a Super Saiyan, he takes on its characteristic cold blue eyes. Frieza freaks out upon seeing them, comparing them to Goku's.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Despite being a badass who saved the world from the androids and kept Majin Buu from being revived, he is envious of Gohan since he can live his dream and have a happy family, while Goku Black stole everything from him including his mother and Mai (so he thinks). Just being reminded of the life he could of have if Black never came to Earth reduces Trunks to tears.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Cell kills him in the main timeline by using Frieza's Death Beam which pierced his heart.
  • Incompletely Trained:
    • He was only 14 when Future Gohan, the only remaining Z Fighter (except Yajirobe) dies, and even then only was able to train with him for about a year. Future Gohan himself wasn't as experienced as Present Gohan would be, either, due to all the other fighters being dead by the time he was a child, so this hits Trunks double. One notable moment this becomes apparent is during his fight with Perfect Cell; he doesn't have the experience to realize the drawbacks of Super Saiyan Grade Three like his father and Cell do, and it comes dangerously close to getting him killed.
    • Due to only knowing Shin for less than a day, his training with the Supreme Kai (who was also Incompletely Trained) had far to go, and as such there was much that he didn't know.
  • Intimate Healing: In Super, he gives Mai a Senzu Bean by chewing it up and feeding it to her mama-bird style. In a later moment, he dreams that Mai does this to him, before waking up fully and seeing Yajirobe over him.
  • I Shall Taunt You: Occasionally when Trunks is confident he has the advantage over someone, he'll taunt them near the beginning or end of their fight.
  • It's All My Fault: While he never admits it out loud to anyone but himself, Trunks internally and externally laments that he had caused changes to the timeline he could never have seen coming, but resolves to at least try to fix what went wrong regardless.
  • It's Personal:
    • He already hated the androids for turning his world into a living nightmare, but things didn't become really personal until they murdered Future Gohan and left his corpse on the streets like trash.
    • His relationship with Goku Black. Not only did he destroy Trunks's world after it was just beginning to recover from the androids, he murders Future Bulma in cold blood, and nearly did the same to Future Mai. He also gives Trunks a severe case of PTSD and he can barely sleep.
  • Just Toying with Them: He seems to constantly be on the receiving end of this. The Androids, Cell, and Goku Black all seem content to mess with him in some way to extend their entertainment. Trunks, however, does not do this, as he tends to be highly efficient when he fights, aside from the occasional calling out and taunts.
  • Ki Manipulation: He starts off knowing how to do this well enough as it is, but in Super he learns how to make a Laser Blade out of his broken sword and some ki.
  • Kick the Dog: Trunks spells out that he would never assist Android 16, despite the latter being no threat, injured, and pleading for help.
  • Kid from the Future: Nearly blows his cover too, but luckily, Bulma and Vegeta don't figure it out early.
  • Kill the God: Zigzag. He destroyed Fused Zamasu's physical body with a Combined Energy Attack after Vegito was split back into Vegeta and Goku. However, since Fused Zamasu was an immortal, his soul survived the attack and merges with the multiverse.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: During The History of Trunks. Constantly fighting the Androids to save the world, and being defeated by them every time, takes a serious mental toll on Trunks and drives him to near-depression, though he keeps trying anyway. This is also part of the reason he has so much difficulty going Super Saiyan until Future Gohan is killed; so many people have fallen to the Androids and the situation is so bleak that he simply can't find the motivation.
  • Laser Blade: After his real sword gets broken in the battle, Trunks uses his ki to replace the blade.
  • Last of His Kind:
    • As far as we are shown (if the movies aren't canon), Future Trunks is the last being with Saiyan blood left in his timeline. Goku Black calls him the last of the Saiyan race.
    • He, Future Mai, and Future Zeno are the only ones left of their entire timeline.
  • Light Is Good: In the final battle against Fused Zamasu, Trunks is continuously surrounded by light, which is eventually revealed to be the collection of the energy from everyone in the world and the formation of a Spirit Bomb.
  • Lineage Comes from the Father: Subverted for the most part. Although he gets his fighting abilities from his father, his demeanor and gentle nature is more like his mentor, Gohan. He is also good with technology like his mom and takes more after her in looks.
  • The Load: Zig-zagged. When Trunks attempts to help Gohan in The History of Trunks, he does accomplish getting 18's attention off of Gohan so he can fight 17 one on one. This is immediately mitigated by the fact that Trunks is out of his league and requires Gohan to save him not long after, and then Gohan loses an arm shielding him and later using up the last senzu bean on him. However, Trunks grows into being a capable warrior of saving the future years later, shaking off this trope once and for all.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: Again when his hair is longer.

  • Make Sure He's Dead: His killing of Mecha-Frieza; in this order, he slices Frieza vertically in half with his sword, slices those two halves into little pieces, and then blasts those pieces into ash with a point-blank Ki blast. Considering the fact that Frieza had previously survived a brutal beatdown from Goku, being sliced in half by his own energy disc, and being on Planet Namek when it exploded, as well the fact that when he's revived in Resurrection 'F' with his body still in pieces, he's still alive and fully conscious, all of Trunks's measures seemed absolutely necessary to ensure Frieza wouldn't be coming back.
  • The Man Makes the Weapon: After he kills Frieza by slicing him into little pieces, King Cold believes that Trunks' Cool Sword is the source of his power and asks to take a look at it... before trying to kill him with it. He's proven wrong; without the sword, Trunks kills Cold with even less effort than it took him to kill Frieza, all while lampshading how stupid Cold was to believe that Trunks was only powerful because of a sword.
    Trunks: So much for your theory. You should know that a weapon doesn't make the man.
  • Master-Apprentice Chain: He was trained by Gohan who trained under Piccolo. Unfortunately for Trunks, Goku died before he could train Gohan like his present counterpart. In Super, he's trained by Vegeta after he has been training under Whis:
    • Piccolo > Son Gohan > Future Trunks
    • Whis > Vegeta > Future Trunks
    • In the manga, he gets another Grand Supreme Kai > Shin > Future Trunks
  • Master Swordsman: One of the best swordsmen in the series, and the most deadly with it, slicing up Frieza when they first meet.
  • Mighty Glacier: In his Ultra Super Saiyan state. He's only "slow" when compared to the other characters, but that was enough for Cell to beat him handily.
  • Mr. Fanservice: It's been theorized that a major reason people ship Vegeta/Bulma (which, when it was first written into the manga, would have been a Crack Pairing of epic proportions) is just to make sure he's born. Readership with women went up when he was introduced.
  • My Future Self and Me:
    • Trunks meets his present self, still an infant. He saves his younger self and his mother from an exploding vehicle. Later he meets his younger self up close and personal, where he pulls his hair.
    • He meets his younger self again when he returns in Super. In fact, Present Trunks is the one who finds him first, and he is shocked to find a young man who looks like an older version of himself. Their resemblance, and their shared name leads to speculation among Trunks and the Pilaf Gang that Future Trunks is his older brother that he didn't know about, until Bulma clears it up that he's their Kid from the Future.
  • My Greatest Failure: He considers Future Gohan's death and his subsequent failure to beat the androids for years to be this, as well as his failure to defeat Goku Black, failure to save his mother and loss of the peace that his world used to have.
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: Future Trunks is unique in Dragonball Lore as the only character with Saiyan Heritage to emphatically not be a Blood Knight (with the minor exception of Gohan, who can let his anger and confidence overtake his usual aversion to the trope). Before the moment he could talk, Future Trunks has grew up in an apocalypse where War Is Hell; a brutal, dirty and ugly affair of survival free of any luxuries like fairness, romanticism and honor that martial artists who grew up in peaceful eras were able to enjoy. Thus, Future Trunks utterly detests violence for its own sake, and sees battle as an unfortunate necessity that he never takes pleasure in, to be finished as quickly and efficiently as possible, free of extraneous theatrics and sadism to minimize the collateral damage towards innocents that can result from such indulgences. Notably, Future Trunks identifies first and foremost as a human who just happens to be born with overwhelming power, and is distinct from his father Vegeta in that he never wears his Saiyan heritage, defined by the death and cruelty of battle, as a badge of pride.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Trunks picks up several new tricks when he returns in Super.
    • Future Trunks in the Super manga gets this as he has a mutated version of the Super Saiyan 2 that makes him almost even with Super Saiyan 3 Goku note . How Trunks managed to get this mutated version of Super Saiyan 2 when all the other fighting prodigies didn't, is never explained other than "he trained for it", somehow. The closest one can reason is that Trunks's Super Saiyan 2 is based off of Vegeta's rage Super Saiyan 2 form that he got after Beerus slapped Bulma. Even then, that was just a brief power-up and an explosion of rage. He also knows the Solar Flare, something he claimed that he learned from Gohan before he died note . Later, Trunks conveniently discovers that he can heal people with his hands since he trained as a Supreme Kai's attendance when he was preparing to stop Babidi from awakening Majin Buu.
    • He gets three in the anime. The first one is a new form that was later named Super Saiyan Rage - a form that sorta looks like Super Saiyan 2 with a blue aura on the inside like Super Saiyan Blue. The form's particulars were unexplained until considerably later, where it was revealed that it's a unique rage boost to Trunk's Super Saiyan 2 form that he can willingly reactivate at need. The second, Trunks learns the Evil Containment Wave within minutes of watching a video of Piccolo doing it. Although characters learning techniques fast isn't new in the series, this stands out since Trunks has never shown such an advanced copy ability before - Goku learns it instantly, but he's well-known for being an Instant Expert, and despite this, it still takes him half a day to learn to properly aim the Evil Containment Wave. Then again, Trunks did have Mai helping aim the jar and a rage boost, which probably helped. At the end of the saga he unconsciously summons a Spirit Bomb and merges it with his sword to create a type of Spirit Sword to slice Fused Zamasu in half. note 
  • Nice Guy: In contrast to his brash, egotistical, arrogant, and violent counterpart raised by Vegeta, Trunks raised by Bulma alone turns out to be a well-mannered, gentle, introspective, sensitive, and kind sweetheart.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • Instead of giving the Z fighters information on what the Androids looked like, he simply tells them they exist. This leads to 16, 17, and 18 being awakened and 18's beatdown on Vegeta. This also later allows Cell to become perfect.
    • Future Trunks' counterpart from the timeline Cell arrives from. It was him being killed and Cell stealing the time machine that allowed Cell to reach the main timeline, and caused the events of the Cell Saga.
    • He could have killed Cell when he was Semi-Perfect by using his full power, but held back because he didn't want to humiliate his father. This allows Cell to absorb 18 and become so powerful and fast that Ultra Super Saiyan Trunks can't stop him.
    • In Super, it's Trunks going back in time that compels Goku to visit Zamasu since he has a similar ki to Black, which exacerbates his distrust of mortals, kill his master, use the Super Dragon Balls to steal Goku's body, and then go on a killing spree across time and space, eventually leading him to Trunk's future where the whole mess began.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis: Unlike most fighters, Future Trunks neither wants to let his enemies grow stronger, use sarcastic wit, nor let them complete their goals for a greater challenge. He doesn't even waste time just to have fun, as he fights at full force from the beginning. He finishes off Frieza on Earth without letting him go to full power (in the manga at least), he kills Present Cell before he can awaken and when he goes back to the future, he kills Androids 17 and 18 without wasting time, permanently preventing Cell from achieving his perfect form. He then goes on to destroy Cell at his weakest. In Super, it's revealed that he unhesitatingly kills both Dabura and Babidi before they could awaken Majin Buu, unlike the main timeline characters. He also tries to kill Future Zamasu instead of disable him like Goku would, first by impaling him and then by firing a Final Flash. He only fails because Zamasu is literally immortal.
  • Not So Above It All: Despite being fed up with his father's cockiness and pride, Trunks can demonstrate he has that same pride, although it shows up not nearly as often and not to the same extent as Vegeta.
  • Oblivious to Love: Completely unaware of Present Mai's crush on him in Dragon Ball Super. Pilaf and Shu flat out call him dense for this.
  • Older Than They Look: By the time of his appearance in Super, he's in his 30s, but doesn't look much different than he did at 17. This is justified in that Saiyans age slower than humans, and they keep themselves in their prime much longer than humans.
  • One-Man Army: In his timeline, he was left along at a young age to face all the threats that would normally require the combined efforts of the Dragon Team to beat. Lacking the raw power of Gohan, Goku, or even Vegeta, he manages to solo them one after another with a combination of having just enough power and being very pragmatic. He kills Freeza and Cold before either can do anything, kills the future Androids 17 and 18 after training in the time chamber, kills future Imperfect Cell three years later after making sure he can't transform, teams up with Shin to kill Dabura and Babidi, prevents Buu from being released, and beats down and impales Zamasu (that is, his timeline's Zamasu; the one from Goku's timeline is the one he needs help against). He has a good claim to being the single most effective hero.
  • Only Sane Man:
    • He's this along with Piccolo and Tien, especially when having to deal with Vegeta's violent and reckless ways.
    • He is also the only Z-Fighter to know the consequences of playing around with their enemy. As a result, whenever he encounters a deadly enemy, he will not hesitate to finish them off as fast as possible whereas any other fighter in his position would've probably toyed around with them until it's too late.
  • Outside-Context Problem: He manages to be this to Frieza for being a Kid from the Future on top of being a Super Saiyan. Until that point, Goku was the only known Super Saiyan in the universe so Frieza had no way to expect Trunks, at all.
  • Out-of-Character Moment: His waiting three years and essentially ignoring the problem of Cell until he attempted to steal the time machine conflicts with Trunks's usually pragmatic attempts to deal with threats to the Earth, especially considering Cell could have absorbed any number of people before trying to kill the half-saiyan.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: He is very strong, and single-handily kills Dabura and Babidi in his time before they could unleash Majin Buu. Before then, he wipes out all the androids including Imperfect Cell. With Goku Black, Trunks is knocked around like a little kid and can't hurt Black even with Super Saiyan 2. When he returns to the past and learns that Goku and Vegeta have been fighting against gods, he feels unneeded since everyone's stronger than him. Though he does still get one good moment by beating down his own timeline's Zamasu and inflicting a seemingly fatal wound on him, showing that he'd be fine if Zamasu didn't "cheat" by stealing Goku's body and teaming up with his alternate self. While in the manga he remains in this role for the whole arc, in the anime Vegeta gives him a firm beating and tongue-lashing and he eventually pulls a new form out of nowhere to put himself in Black and Vegeta's league.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil:
    • What he subjects Future Androids 17 and 18 to when he returns to his time. He even tells them that he's dishing out to them exactly what they did to Future Gohan: making them feel completely powerless and outmatched before killing them.
    • His killing of Fused Zamasu near the end of the Future Trunks Saga. Zamasu's death is undoubtedly one of the most gruesome ones in the series, considering Trunks slowly sliced him in two from the crotch up, but after all of the atrocities Zamasu has committed, both before and after he fused, it's hard to feel any sympathy for him.
  • Physical God: By the end of the Future Trunks arc in Super, it can be definitely said that he's this. In the manga, he has power rivaling Super Saiyan 3 Goku (and by extension Buu) as a "Mastered" Super Saiyan 2, and on top of that, Shin dubbed him a Supreme Kai apprentice. In the anime, he goes even further with "Super Saiyan Rage", which put him squarely in God tier, being the equal of, or slightly stronger than, SSB Goku and Vegeta, and with the energy of everyone on the planet allowed him to beat Fused Zamasu to a draw and destroy his physical form.
  • Power Makes Your Voice Deep: In his new Super Saiyan Rage form, his voice is much deeper than normal.
  • The Power of Hate: His hatred of Black, and his Nazi-esque plans, is what pushed him to gain a new Super Saiyan form. Dragon Ball Heroes call the form "Super Saiyan Rage".
  • Power Up Letdown: Gets hit with this bad when he tries to use the Super Saiyan Grade 3/Ultra Super Saiyan form against Perfect Cell. While the form does make him stronger, it ends up decreasing his speed by an even more significant amount, rendering him unable to even land a hit on Cell once the latter stops toying with him. Cell even gives him a lecture on the drawbacks of the form and reveals to Trunks that both he and the other Z fighters are capable of using the form and that they were all smart enough to forgo it because of the severe drawbacks.
  • Pragmatic Hero: One of the few good guys in DBZ that will flat out try to kill the villain as quickly as possible, as opposed to holding back or sparing them.
  • Purple Is Powerful: Had purple hair and a purple Battle Aura.
  • Put on a Bus: He returns to his timeline at the end of the Cell arc, never to be seen again. However, he returns in Super with his own saga. He and Future Mai leave again after the arc ends for a new timeline to rebuild and to keep the tragedy that befell their world from happening again.
  • Prophet Eyes: Trunks's Super Saiyan Rage possesses these for a short time until his body adapts to and gains more control over the form.
  • Rage Against the Heavens: Zamasu's brilliant move of satisfying his sadism by torturing the self-deprecating and survivor's guilt-loaded Trunks, claiming everything that has led to his coming is all Trunks' fault pushes Trunks past the breaking point of guilt and into outright apathy for his so-called sin, and whatever drivel the gods throw at him.
  • Rage-Breaking Point: Future Trunks reaches his breaking point after Goku Black and Zamasu accuses him of breaking the taboo of time-travel, allowing Black to steal Goku's body since he didn't die of the heart virus thanks to Trunks. At that moment, Trunks snaps and reaches a new level of power.
    • In the manga what pushes Trunks to reach Super Saiyan 2 is the prospect of the peace that he had worked so hard for was at risk of being broken, as well as the fact Dabura and Babidi were killing Shin and Kibito
  • The Reveal: According to himself, Goku Black is the direct result of Trunks meddling with time. He went back in time and created timelines when Goku isn't killed by the heart virus. This allowed the Zamasu from one of those timelines to steal Goku's body with the Super Dragon Balls and become Goku Black. Then he teams up with the Zamasu from Future Trunks's timeline thanks to the Time Ring.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
    • Upon returning home and confronting the homicidal 17 and 18 of that time, he pulls a Curb-Stomp Battle on the two of them while chewing them out on how much they've made the world suffer and killed all his friends, and now they feel just like how everyone else in the world does, completely powerless and afraid.
      Future Trunks: You hate the fact that you’re powerless to stop me, that you’re completely outmatched. Well imagine feeling the way you feel now all the time like the people of this planet do. Fools! How do you think my master Gohan felt when you ganged up on him in the rain and he had no way out? Well now it’s your turn. I hope you enjoy it!
    • The speech continues after he kills Android 18 and Android 17 calls him on it:
      Future Trunks: You think this life is all about you, don't you? What about the others? The ones that you two killed?!
    • He gives Fused Zamasu a vicious one once he absorbs the Spirit Bomb into his sword.
      Future Trunks: It's not about gods and mortals! You don't believe in anyone but yourself, AND WE WON'T LET YOU WIN!!
  • Rebuilt Pedestal: He learned a lot of hard truths about his father, namely how selfish he is along with being a big Jerkass who will endanger the world and sell out his allies for a good fight. His feelings changed after he learns that Vegeta charged Cell after he was killed and he leaves on a good note with his dad. After returning to the past to get help to fight Goku Black, he is shocked by how much Vegeta has changed. He actually treats him like a son, trains him to fight Black, and give advice... in his own way.
  • Remember When You Blew Up a Sun?: Him slicing Frieza into pieces is mentioned often to show what a badass he is, and to also show how powerful the androids are since Trunks can't defeat them. Even years after he returns to his own time, it is mentioned that he's the one who killed Frieza.
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: In Super's Future Trunks Saga, after Beerus kills Zamasu, he believes that this means Goku Black will be Ret-Gone and Trunks's timeline is safe. However, Trunks, recalling that the deaths of the mainstream timeline versions of the Androids and Cell had no effect on their counterparts in his timeline, is not so sure and take Goku and Vegeta back with him to the future just to be certain, and indeed, nothing has changed; Black still exists and is still wreaking havoc. However, while Trunks was correct to assume that his timeline was still in danger, it wasn't for the reason he thought. Beerus got it wrong because he and the others thought Future Zamasu was Present Zamasu and that Goku Black was merely a creation of the Super Dragon Balls when in truth, Goku Black is Present Zamasu, who became so obsessed with Goku that he used the Super Dragon Balls to swap bodies with him and then teamed up with his counterpart from Trunks' time; as Black explains, his Time Ring protects him from any changes in time, meaning that Beerus killing his past self wouldn't affect him even if it erased the timeline he originally came from.
  • Right Makes Might: Played With. In the end of his saga in Super, his righteous fury towards Zamasu causes him to obtain a new Super Saiyan form, and the hope of the people he was protecting manifested into a Spirit Bomb-like energy sword. With both of these combined, despite being objectively weaker than both Goku and Vegeta, and particularly Vegito, he's the one who destroys Fused Zamasu's body. However, his righteous fury isn't enough to bypass Fused Zamasu's immortality since his spirit survived the death of his physical body and can only watched helpless as Infinite Zamasu kills everyone on Earth.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Upon returning home, Trunks proceeds to hunt down 17 and 18 and destroys them in a Curb-Stomp Battle that doubles as a "Reason You Suck" Speech. He then waits for Cell and also takes him out with haste finally securing peace for his timeline. At least, until Super...
  • Retcon: According to Bulma and various flashbacks in Super, Future Trunks apparently had blue hair the whole time, despite clips of him from Z showing otherwise, and Present Trunks's hair being the exact same shade it always was, matching Future Trunks pre-Super.

  • Sacrificial Lion: He was this to show that not only was Cell back, he was Super Perfect and that anyone could bite it with Goku already being dead.
  • Save This Person, Save the World: Part of the reason he initially went back to the past was to give Goku the cure to the heart virus that was originally supposed to kill him, believing that Goku's the only one who stands a chance at saving the planet from the Androids. Goku still dies in the end (though by sacrificing himself to save the Earth from Cell's Taking You with Me attempt, rather than the heart virus), but the world is saved regardless.
  • Security Blanket: A rather strange case as it's a weapon he's finding security in. Super strongly hints towards this being the case with his sword, which is why he has decided to start using one again even years after he put it away due to Goku Black bringing a second apocalypse. It also explains why in both Z and Super he constantly carries it around despite being in more calm and peaceful areas where it wouldn't be needed.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: An unusual example in that he's not trying to correct his own timeline, but make an alternate one where the Bad Future never happened and hopefully find a way to save what's left of Earth in his timeline in the process.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: After seeing Trunks and Mai's tearful reunion, Vegeta seems to have decided that the two were an item, and as a result, he tells him to simply watch his fight with Black. Trunks reacts in surprise and says that, no, they're not in that kind of relationship, though the way they're blushing doesn't help things. This is despite an Imagine Spot from a previous episode showing that his ideal-happy-no-Goku-Black-future is a family meal with his mom and her. He really doesn't help his case when healing her with a Senzu Bean in Episode 60, as instead of doing so the normal way, he does it via CPR.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Prior to Future Gohan's death, his attempts at challenging the Androids ended in failure, yet he survived. When he went to the past, he was clearly shocked when 17 and 18 were brought online, and attempted to kill them while they try to activate 16. In Super, his PTSD is so severe, he attacked Goku after thinking he failed to travel to the past and mistook Goku for Black. This is despite seeing his father and mother, both of whom are dead by that point in his timeline, and Vegeta was long dead by that point.
  • Shoot the Shaggy Dog:
    • After training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber with Vegeta, he's convinced he's finally surpassed his father and steps up to the plate to fight Perfect Cell once Vegeta fails, breaking out Super Saiyan Third Grade. However, while Cell himself admits the form outmatches him in terms of raw strength, Trunks is given a rude awakening to the form's flaws: the sheer muscle increase slows him down, making it useless against someone like Cell who's both fast and strong, and drains his energy and stamina far faster than normal. On top of it all, Cell reveals that he can do the same, and so can Vegeta; he just never bothered because he figured out the drawbacks and uselessness of the form on his own, something Trunks failed to do because of his inexperience. This revelation completely breaks Trunks' spirit.
    • Best summed up in the Trunks' story from Cell's timeline: He manages to shut down the androids thanks to getting a remote in the past to do so, but as he's planning to go back to tell the others the good news, Cell appears and snaps his neck.
    • He gets hit with this again in Super's Future Trunks Saga. Despite all of his efforts and attempts to stop Goku Black and Future Zamasu, his efforts amount to nothing when Fused Zamasu becomes a multiverse-spanning Eldritch Abomination who kills the rest of humanity on the planet and necessitates Goku calling in Future Zeno to not only erase Zamasu, but the entire future timeline to stop it. However, Trunks is ultimately thrown a bone when Whis creates a Close-Enough Timeline by warning Future Beerus about Goku Black's plans, allowing him to stop Black and Zamasu before their crusade even begins.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!:
    • After listening to Future Zamasu's Motive Rant about why he wants to kill humans and the Saiyans in particular, Future Trunks tells him that he has no right to decide that before beating him up and firing a Final Flash at him.
    • Goku Black and Future Zamasu accuses Future Trunks of everything that has happened. Since he saved Goku from the heart virus instead of letting him die naturally, it allowed Zamasu to take over Goku's body and began his plan to wipe out humanity. According to them, all the bad stuff that has happened is because he broke the taboo of time-travel, which only the gods are allowed to do. Trunks basically tells them to shut up and he doesn't care if it's a sin, just as he transform into a new form of Super Saiyan.
    • Both Future Trunks and Mai get one on Future Zamasu after trapping him in the Evil Containment Wave.
      Trunks: I said you'd pay Zamasu! And now you've been introduced to the true power of mortals!
      Future Zamasu: The power of mortals!? Is that a joke!? I'll show you what happens when worthless beings speak down to a god!
      Mai: How can we be worthless if we've got you trapped!? You have no idea what we can accomplish!
      Trunks: That's right! You underestimate mortals, you pay the price!
      Trunks/Mai: So say goodbye!!
    • After running Fused Zamasu through with his Spirit Sword, he asked if Trunks was really going to stand in the way of justice. Trunks responds by slicing him in two from the crotch up:
      Trunks: I don't give a damn about you! OR YOUR SO-CALLED JUSTICE!!
  • Signature Move: Burning Attack, Heat Dome Attack and Shining Slash.
  • Skewed Priorities: In a rare moment of idiocy for Future Trunks, he deliberately waits until Perfect Cell beats Vegeta unconscious to power up on the grounds that he doesn't want to hurt Vegeta's ego, despite the fact that Vegeta's ego is directly responsible for Cell becoming perfect in the first place. Then it turns out he completely wasted his energy on a bad strategy.
  • Sleeves Are for Wimps: He's wearing a black wife beater beneath the purple capsule corp jacket.
  • Smug Smiler: Something that gets overshadowed by his overall character but Trunks, when he believes victory is assured, tends to drop some pretty epic smirks as seen when fighting Mecha-Frieza and Cell in his future. Perhaps he’s not that different from his father after all. To the point that Vegeta has a dream of a Super Saiyan Trunks giving him one.
  • Sole Survivor: By the time he finally kills the androids, he's the last remaining protagonist outside of Bulma. Then in Super, he and Future Mai are the sole survivors of their entire timeline after Fused Zamasu becomes a reality spanning Eldritch Abomination called Infinite Zamasu, that forces Future Zeno to destroy the timeline to kill Fused Zamasu.
  • Sphere of Destruction: His Heat Dome Attack makes one around him. Also his Burning Attack, which involves him flailing his arms around wildly first.
  • Stepford Smiler: Trunks was definitely this at the beginning of the Android Saga when he met the protagonists with smiles after defeating Frieza and King Cold. They had no idea where he was from or the fact he's a Hurting Hero who arrived to prevent their deaths.
  • The Stoic: Trunks rarely smiles and is almost always frowning. Given his backstory, this is completely understandable. He does, however, give tender smiles when he's around his mother, Gohan, and when he first meets Vegeta.
  • Strong as They Need to Be: Trunks gets an immense boost in power during Episode 57 of Super to allow him to be useful in the fight against Goku Black and Future Zamasu, most likely a result of rage boosts. He performs noticeably worse in Episode 61 and needed Goku and Vegeta to protect him before getting his own transformation.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: His hair color really stands out in the series and is a king-sized hint that he's related to Bulma (the only main cast character with a color that comes close), even before he says it. Other than that, his eye shape, facial structure, skin color, and body type are very much Vegeta's.
  • Student and Master Team: He was trained by his Big Brother Mentor Gohan and they've fought against Androids 17 and 18 a number of times. One could also argue the same case with his father against the Androids and Cell in the present, but Vegeta merely treated Trunks as a glorified sparring partner.
  • Superior Successor: Despite some difficulties in becoming a Super Saiyan, at least in the anime, he becomes one much sooner than his father. He also manages to greatly surpass his master Gohan thanks to going into the past and training with his dad.
  • Surpassed the Teacher: By the time he returns to the future to fight the androids, he surpasses Future Gohan in every way possible.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • After going a long time without eating properly (Mai is happy to find something that isn't dog food to eat), Future Trunks gets tired just from running. This really affects Trunks since as a Saiyan, he needs to eat a lot of food to keep going. Similarly, the psychological effects of constantly running and seeing horrific things have taken a toll on Trunks's psyche: when he wakes up and sees Goku (who Black took his body from, with Trunks's last knowledge of Goku being that he was dead and didn't want to come back), it flashbacks to Black's deeds, and he immediately tries to kill Goku in a rage. Even after he's knocked out of it, made aware this is Goku etcetera, his body's still visibly affected under the surface, throughout the following episodes. His self-confidence is also shot to hell and he suffers from clear PTSD.
    • When Future Trunks gets pissed at Black's reasoning for trying to exterminate humanity, he flings himself at him and almost instantly gets put down, with Black calling him out for blindly attacking him from a rush of emotion.
  • Sword and Fist: Trunks is a Master Swordsman who is also trained in unarmed combat. King Cold made the mistake of thinking that Trunks was only dangerous because of his sword and paid dearly for it.
  • Take Up My Sword: An indirect version, but Trunks gains the ability to use the Super Saiyan form upon finding Future Gohan dead in the street, and for bonus points, he later also begins to carry with him his signature broadsword.
  • Taking You with Me: During the Future Trunks Saga, he tries this. He grabs onto Future Zamasu and prepares to blow himself up along with him, reasoning that Zamasu's Complete Immortality must have a limit, and that if he blew them both up on a molecular level, there would be nothing left for him to regenerate from. Before he can pull it off, Goku Black stabs him In the Back and knocks him out.
  • A Taste of Their Own Medicine: The psychotic Androids 17 and 18 of his timeline spent twenty years rampaging across the Earth killing whoever and whenever they wanted For the Evulz, later ganging up on Future Gohan in the rain and brutally murdering him. When Trunks returns to that time, he wastes no time putting them in their place, stating outright that he's doing to them exactly what they did to Future Gohan and what they've been doing to the rest of the planet for the decades: making them feel completely outmatched, helpless and afraid before killing them.
  • Taught by Experience: This is pretty much Trunks's mentality: after facing the androids as a Super Saiyan (the manga has him already a Super Saiyan, just older and having gotten stronger by training), he received a Curb-Stomp Battle, and learned to prioritize time-traveling for a solution instead of confronting the androids again, and it's implied that is how he learned to flee-on-sight. After training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber, he fights Perfect Cell in his Super Saiyan 3rd Grade form and lost due to a speed disadvantage, and rarely used the form unless he had to. After returning to his time, his Super Saiyan form alone was enough to kill the androids - and his knowledge of Cell's ambush for the time machine prevents the bio-android from getting the drop on him, and killing him. Trunks takes advantage of this trope during his sparring match with Vegeta. He uses the Super Saiyan 3rd Grade form to lower Vegeta's guard, and immediately switched to Super Saiyan 2 to exploit his overconfidence.
  • Tell Me About My Father!: Bulma's kindly-meant whitewashing of Vegeta's personality paid off with some unexpected dividends later on.
  • Terminator Twosome: Both he and Cell, although they come from different timelines. Trunks had no idea who Cell was, and Cell killed the Trunks of his timeline before going to the past. Oddly, due to the Timey-Wimey Ball, between the two of them, they've killed two versions of the other each.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: Flipped version in that it's the villains who constantly deride a good guy for his time-traveling turning into Nice Job Breaking It, Hero. Cell because it allowed him to go From Nobody to Nightmare, and Black/Zamasu for breaking the Time Travel Taboo. In the end, he's so fed up with the 'everything is your fault' schtick that has been heaped on him for the well-meaning acts that he outright says:
    Future Trunks: If you say my choices make me evil, THEN THAT'S WHAT I'LL BE!!!
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: He kills Mecha-Frieza by, in this order, slicing him vertically in two, chopping those two halves into confetti, and then vaporizing those pieces with a point-blank Ki blast. Of course, considering that Frieza had previously survived a beating from Goku, getting sliced in two, having a portion of his head blown off, and Namek's explosion, this could easily fall under Make Sure He's Dead.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: The Future Trunks Saga of Super is just one big Trauma Conga Line for him from beginning to end, ending with a Shoot the Shaggy Dog when Fused Zamasu becomes a multiverse-spanning Eldritch Abomination who kills the rest of humanity on the planet and necessitates Goku calling in Future Zeno to erase the entire future timeline to stop him. In the end, however, Whis takes pity on Trunks and creates a Close-Enough Timeline for him and Future Mai to stay in by going to the future and warning Future Beerus about Goku Black's plans, allowing him to stop Black before his crusade can even begin.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works:
    • During his fight with Goku Black, Trunks throws his sword at Black in time to divert his attack that would have killed him.
    • He does this again during his fourth fight against Goku Black in Episode 63. This allows Trunks to distract Goku Black long enough to close the distance and blast him with a point-blank Galick Gun.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
    • Wasn't badass enough at first to take on the androids of his timeline but then spent time training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber. By the time he returns to his time, he easily beat the androids who had terrorized him throughout his entire life.
    • He goes up several levels when he reveals that he defeated Dabura and Babidi in his time, stopping Majin Buu's revival. Keep in mind that Dabura is as powerful as Perfect Cell and the last time Trunks fought, he was weaker than Perfect Cell, and he can become a Super Saiyan 2. He also manages to take another one after some training with Vegeta and he's able to perform the Final Flash and Galick Gun. He goes even further in Episode 61 where gains a Super Saiyan transformation almost on par with Goku and Vegeta's god forms. In Episode 66, he manages to fight Fused Zamasu to a draw and overwhelm by slicing him in a half after gaining energy from everyone else around him.
  • Tragic Dream:
    • He wants to correct the primary timeline because he can't fix his own one beyond rebuilding after the apocalypse.
    • In Super, he visits present-day Gohan and gets to see the happy family Gohan made for himself. He briefly imagines what his life would be like if Goku Black never invaded his world. We get a scene of Trunks having dinner with his mom, Mai, and even Scratch (the black cat) in the background. This causes Trunks to break down into tears since he knows that such a thing can never happen since his mom is dead and so is Mai (so he thinks).
  • Tranquil Fury: When he gains enough strength to face his timeline's androids as well as Cell, you can tell that he is pretty much out of his mind with rage, but remains fairly calm as he toys with and annihilates all of them without even trying. This is pretty much his state of mind on the topic of Future Zamasu, Goku Black, and anything related.
  • Trauma Button: The androids 17 and 18 are largely this for him in Z, seeing how alternate versions are responsible for nearly killing him multiple times and making his world the apocalypse that it is. His first reaction upon seeing them is panic and fear, barely holding back his restraint when being forced to sit on the sidelines and ultimately rushing headfirst into a battle he can't win. In Super, this becomes Goku, the man he was strongly a hero worshipper of, largely because the man who destroyed his world (again) and personally targeted him for a year was none other than Goku Black. Unlike the androids, this trigger results in blind anger rather than fear.
  • Trauma Conga Line: He has been through his share of trauma. He was born into the world that has been ravaged by the androids, his father died fighting them and he's too young to remember him, and he loses his mentor Gohan to the same androids. When he goes to the past to ensure at least one timeline is saved from the terror of the androids, he's horrified to learn that the changes he made created more androids, they're even more powerful than their future counterparts, and an alternative version of himself allowed Cell to time-travel to a world with the androids after the ones in his time were killed by another Future Trunks. He also finds out that his father is a selfish, amoral asshole who helps Cell to become complete to stroke his own ego. He is then humiliated and later killed by Cell during the Cell Games. When he does returns home, he makes peace with his father, kills the androids, and stops Majin Buu's resurrection. Things seemed to be finally looking up for him. Then, Goku Black arrives, destroys the world in the middle of its recovery from the androids, murders his mom, and traps him in the past so he can kill the rest of humanity unheeded. The pure trauma Goku Black puts him through causes him to developed PTSD and self-worth issues. And in the end, everyone he tries to save is killed by Fused Zamasu except Mai and then his timeline is wiped out completely by Zeno to keep Fused Zamasu from spreading into other timelines. The best ending he got is moving into another timeline where Whis warns Future Beerus about Zamasu so he can take care of him. Even then, he had to deal with another version of himself.
  • Traumatic Superpower Awakening: His transformation to Super Saiyan at Future Gohan's death is currently the page image.
  • Troubled, but Cute: Almost twenty years of fleeing for your life from two homicidal androids has left Future Trunks emotionally scarred and serious. Taken up a notch with heavy doses of PTSD due to Goku Black in Super.
  • Uniqueness Decay: A variant. While he did use Gohan's Masenko in the Z-Era Broly movie, his time in Super almost exclusively uses his father's techniques, barely showing any of his own compared to before where he would otherwise use his own techniques.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: Although Future Trunks is disciplined and a Combat Pragmatist, since he didn't have anybody to train him after Future Gohan died, he doesn't have a full grasp of fundamental fighting concepts. Cell mocked him for relying on brute force and for not noticing the flaw of the Ultra Super Saiyan form (it increases strength but decreases speed and stamina, making it almost useless against an equal or superior fighter). His lack of skill also may be because his mentor Future Gohan, who was even less experienced than present Gohan, tended to rely on his raw power than technical skill due to also being Incompletely Trained since most of the Z-fighters had all died in his childhood.
    • This is Subverted in Super where he's a much better and more experienced fighter, able to trick Goku Black several times during their encounter. After getting his new Super Saiyan Rage form, he knows he can take on one, but not when they're together. So he hits Zamasu with a large blast, knowing he'll revel in his invulnerability and then attacks Black, nearly killing him. Unfortunately, Future Trunks didn't make sure Black was dead before trying to permanently kill Zamasu.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom:
    • Future Trunks gets this hard in Super. Him going back to the past for help allows Goku Black to follow him using the Time Ring, where he meets Goku, Beerus, and Whis. The latter becomes interested in Black because of his Time Ring, which eventually leads to Goku meeting Zamasu. Goku's meeting and subsequent sparring match with Zamasu ends up triggering his Start of Darkness. After seeing how Goku, a mere mortal, could become powerful enough to challenge the gods, Zamasu begins a downward spiral, going from simply distrusting mortals and seeing them as foolish to a full-blown Jerkass God who seeks to wipe out all mortal life.
    • Zamasu got the chance to take Goku's body and become Goku Black because he was alive at that point, thanks to Trunks traveling to the past and giving Goku the medicine for the illness that killed him in Future Trunks' timeline.
  • Unstoppable Rage: His overwhelming fury at Goku Black and Zamasu's revelation of deliberately slowing their genocide of Earth to torment him over his crime of Time Travel finally makes him snap utterly and gain the aptly-named Super Saiyan Rage transformation, using it to beat the two savagely.
  • Villain Killer: Not as much as Son Goku, but it's still there. Not only does he kill King Cold and a mechanized Frieza but he also kills his timeline's versions of Android 17, 18, and Cell. Super reveals that he killed his timeline's versions of Babidi and Dabura before they could awaken Majin Buu.
  • Walking Spoiler: Quite possibly the biggest in the series. It's not possible to talk about Trunks without bringing up his shocking parentage and that he's from the future.
  • Warrior Prince: Technically speaking, he's descended from Saiyan royalty, but it never really comes up much. Plus, Trunks is a very humble man, so the knowledge wouldn't induce any kind of change in his behavior anyway.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Ironically, seeing how he was Unskilled, but Strong in Z, Trunks has this in Super. While still a strong warrior, his power is lacking compared to the strength of Goku and Vegeta who have gained much more power than when they last saw each other. To combat this, he has become even more of a Combat Pragmatist than before, being able to temporarily fight on equal grounds with several opponents until he can get a decisive strike in.
  • We Have Become Complacent: One reason why he was no match for Goku Black was that after he defeated his timeline's Androids 17 and 18, Cell, Babidi, and Dabura, he relaxed and believed Super Saiyan 2 was the absolute peak of his powers. He decides to relax again when Goku and Vegeta agree to help him. Vegeta scolds him for this and says no matter the situation, he should always strive to surpass his limits. He takes this to heart and resolves to constantly train.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Desperately wants approval from the father he never knew. He finally earns it by the end of the Cell Saga.
    • Deconstructed in that Trunks' desperation to get some sort of approval from his father not only results in getting abuse from Vegeta, it also results in Trunks standing by for most of Vegeta's showboating and only getting involved far too late to stop Cell.
      • To put this in perspective: When Vegeta and Trunks go to confront Semi-Perfect Cell, the latter quietly believes that he's actually surpassed the former in strength. He decides to not mention this to anyone and instead allows Vegeta to have his way and showboat with Cell despite having the power to rid himself of the creature easily. Even after Vegeta betrays Trunks' trust to fuel his own selfish desire, Trunks waits until Cell has beaten Vegeta into unconciousness and is about to kill him before he finally decides to show his full power now that he's certain his father's ego won't be bruised by seeing his son supposedly surpass him. To top it all off, the only time Trunks ever goes against Vegeta is not because of his horrendous treatment of him, but his willingness to risk the wellbeing of everyone on the planet for a good fight.
    • This was defied in one scene when Vegeta attempted to exploit this. He tells Trunks "I know you don't have the guts to challenge your own dear father!" This didn't stop Trunks from rightly blasting Vegeta in an attempt to keep him from getting in the way of his objectives.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • He calls Vegeta out for not rescuing his mother and past self when Android 20 shot down their airplane. Vegeta just scoffs at him, saying that he didn't care about them. He does it again when Vegeta allowed Cell to find Android 18 and become complete, all so he can have a better challenge.
    • Vegeta lays into him for seemingly abandoning his world to Goku Black and turning his back on an enemy. He will hear none of it when Trunks tries to defend himself and only backs off when Bulma tells him that Trunks didn't abandon his world, he came back to get help.
    • Vegeta does it again when it seems that Trunks is ready to back off and let Goku and Vegeta save the day after witnessing the power of Super Saiyan Blue.
  • The Worf Effect:
    • A mild example. After he defeats Frieza and King Cold with little effort, he challenges Goku to see how powerful he is. Goku blocks all of Trunks's attacks with one finger and didn't even move.
    • He's then easily taken down by Android 18. She even breaks his sword just by blocking an attack.
    • He's killed in one shot by Super Perfect Cell. Although, Trunks was off-guard and untransformed when it happened.
    • In fact, Trunks doesn't win any fights until his rematch with the Androids from his timeline.
    • Despite being powerful enough to kill Imperfect Cell in his last appearance before Super and managing to stop Dabura and Babidi when they tried to revive Majin Buu, he's no match against Goku Black, who tanks all his attacks even as a Super Saiyan (and apparently Super Saiyan 2 as well). He also can't harm Goku who blocks all his attacks as a Super Saiyan 2 and one-shots him as a Super Saiyan 3 - this is due to Goku's Saiyan-Beyond-God power, which would naturally make him stronger/more durable underneath the normal power of Super Saiyan 2 or 3.
  • Would Hit a Girl: In his fights against Future Android 18. He also tries to slice present Android 18, though stops as she made a Heel–Face Turn.
  • You Are Already Dead:
    • He does this to Frieza in their fight. He noticeably dices Frieza into several pieces, and Frieza gloats about the ineffectiveness of the attack mere moments before literally falling to pieces. In the Kai dub, Trunks even says the trope name word-for-word.
    • Does this to Android 14 in the Super Android 13! movie with his sword and without saying a word.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: Averted. He kills both the present and his own incarnations of Cell before they can reach their perfect forms and become unstoppable. Super also reveals he smoked Future Babidi and Future Dabura before they could revive Future Majin Buu.