Original Airdate: September 14, 2018
Perfect Cell has returned, now even more powerful than ever, and not needing the other Androids for that power. Will Gohan be overcome by his hubris, or does the now-dead Goku have one more ace up his sleeve? One way or another, the battle—and, with it, the entire story—appears to have reached its end.
I'm not even mad you're still alive. I've got some tropes to work through:
- Adapted Out: The anime-exclusive scene of Piccolo, Krillin, Tien, and Yamcha trying in vain to distract Cell during the final beam struggle is omitted in favor of keeping it like the manga where only Vegeta tries to distract him.
- Adaptational Heroism: Mr. Satan ends up taking credit for Cell's death, not as an opportunist like he did in the original, but as a way to calm the public from rioting.
- Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole: Cell returns post-regeneration without explanation here. In the original manga and anime he used Instant Transmission, but in this version that requires having eaten sick Yardrats (Which Cell obviously had no access to).
- Anguished Declaration of Love: Krillin tells 18 he loves her while Cell charges up his final Kamehameha, even though she's still unconscious after being coughed up earlier. His quick admission on the Lookout, which she rebuffs more out of embarrassment than anything else, also counts.Krillin: Also, I'm in love with you.
18: Aaaand that's my limit! Thank you, bye. (flies off)
Krillin: That was... *grunt* Man, I'm bad at this.
18: (calling out as she flies under the Lookout) We both are!
- Beam-O-War: The climactic Kamehameha beam struggle between Gohan and Cell.
- Big "YES!": Krillin eagerly accepting 18's invitation to have sex.
- Bigger Is Better in Bed: 18's reaction to Krillin dropping his pants implies that he's actually pretty well-endowed, and that makes her even more willing to go through with her promise to "rock his four-foot world". They end up going at it well into the night.
- Book-Ends: Quite a few.
- Trunks' saga began with a son being killed, the father crying out for "[their] baby boy" and trying and failing to get revenge on the one who killed their child. First time around, it was King Cold and Freeza. This time, it's Vegeta and Trunks.
- The Cell Saga started with Cell singing a song to himself, and the Cell Games end with Cell singing a song to himself as he dies. First time around, it was "Mr. Sandman". This time it's "My Way".
- The "Krillin Owned Counter" was started up way back in episode 1 when Raditz smashed Krillin into Kame House. The "Krillin Owned Counter" was obliterated here with Krillin getting lucky with 18 within Kame House.
- Season 3 opened up with Krillin superficially dating a woman who ultimately strung him along and didn't think much of him. The credits for the season finale show him getting some from Android 18—someone he has genuine feelings for, and who reciprocates said feelings.
- Brick Joke: Having survived the Cell Saga, 18 meets up with Krillin to "rock his 4 foot world."
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: During The Stinger, 18 makes due on her promise to "rock Krillin's Four-foot world". That said, on top of actually rocking her world, being implied to have a massive dong, and enough stamina to go at it from day to night, one of the blasts in his resulting Scatter Bullet ends up destroying the Krillin Owned Count.
- After killing, Trunks, Cell mentions that he was actually aiming for Tien, obviously still trying to pay Tien back for the Kikoho barrage in Episode 48.
- Vegeta screaming "MY BABY BOY" when Trunks is killed mirrors King Cold screaming the exact same thing when Freeza is killed.
- When Vegeta attacks Cell after Trunks dies, Gohan shouts out "Vegeta, NO!" to which Vegeta replies "Vegeta, YES!" referencing a similar exchange between Goku and Vegeta during The Plan to Eradicate Christmas. When Cell No Sells Vegeta's attack, he replies "Vegeta, no," before knocking him into the ground.
- Before Cell and Gohan's Kamehameha clash, Gohan contemplates that he's about to be killed by an android with only one working arm, and wonders why this situation seems so familiar.
- Vegeta says sorry and he means it this time.
- Gohan proclaiming everyone really is fucked, just like in Cell's P.E.R.F.E.C.T. song.
- Goku's line to Gohan to "Plant your feet, grit your teeth, and Eat! That! HORSE!" calls back to a line in Episode 45 when Goku was convincing Vegeta to train with him in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber following his loss to 18:Goku: When you fall off that horse, you get right back up, and you eat that horse. Come eat that horse with me, Vegeta.
Vegeta: What the hell are you on about!?
- Rule #4 of Popo's Training is revealed: Don't eat Popo's food.
- When Android 18 wakes up on the Lookout, she's overwhelmed and quickly blurts out questions like, "Where am I? What happened? Where's Cell?" in the exact same rhythm that Dende did when he was Instant Transmissioned to the Lookout in Episode 56 ("Where am I? Who are you? Where's my family?").
- Trunks mentions both Yemma's desk and having his clothes taken away when he's revived.
- When 18 actually leaves the Lookout, she tells Krillin they should talk later. Her reply to his request for her number harkens back to Episode 39 when she replied similarly to Vegeta.Krillin: Wait, wait, but what's your number?
Krillin: Huh... Guess I flew into that one.
- In The Stinger, Krillin asks 18 as to how she found him at the Kame House, with her stating it seemed like the obvious pick. Back when Goku was laid up, they moved him there with Krillin stating that it was the second most obvious place.
- And, of course, the reason she came to Kame House:
- Call-Forward: Tien's last admonition to the other Z-fighters before leaving the Lookout after Cell's defeat is to "keep a close eye on Vegeta" next time the world is in danger. Of course, in the Buu saga, Vegeta allows himself to enter Babidi's service as a Majin, resulting in a long-awaited rematch with Goku.
- The Cameo: Android 17 is briefly shown waking up after being brought back to life.Android 17: I never did get that boat
- Casual Danger Dialog: During the climatic Beam-O-War for the fate of the Earth, Perfect Cell just keeps talking.Gohan: Is it too much to ask that you just shut up and fight?!
- Closing Credits: The credits include all actors and personnel from Season 3, regardless of whether or not they appeared in Episode 60.
- Credits Medley: Before the mid-credits scene at Kame House, the music over the Closing Credits is an instrumental version of "Day of Fate". After, for the Android 16 still image, it changes to a music box version of "Day of Fate".
- Crush Filter: When 18 tells Krillin that they should talk later, Kaiser added some Gauss effects.
- Death Is Cheap: When Dende reveals that they still can't use Shenron to revive people who have died before,note Piccolo points out that they could still go to New Namek and summon Porunga to revive Goku (if he wanted to be revived).
- Department of Redundancy Department: When 18 wakes up on the Lookout, she starts asking several questions in quick succession. Piccolo answers each of them before realizing that the last two basically have the same response.Android 18: Where am I? What happened? Where's Cell?
Piccolo: On the Lookout, Gohan killed Cell, and...Gohan killed Cell.
- Description Cut: Android 18, when she says she has to go find 17:18: Okay, look. I've got to go find my brother. I can only imagine what's going through his head right now...
(Cut to Android 17 waking up on the island where he was eaten by Cell)
17: I never did get that boat.
18: I actually bet it's inane.
- Dude, Not Funny!: As they're about to wish everyone back with the Dragon Balls, Krillin admits his love for 18, which results in her flying off. Tien decides to indulge in some Gallows Humor that Yamcha does not appreciate.Tien: Suddenly, I'm elated that Trunks is dead.
Tien: What? So he didn't have to see that.
Yamcha: Still, dude...
- Exact Words
- While pushing Gohan forward Goku rather bluntly says "yet" when stating Gohan has strength Goku doesn't have.
- The wish to revive everyone killed by Cell is worded as "everyone on Earth killed by Cell". So, King Kai, Bubbles, and Gregory are still dead, and Goku would still be dead too even if he hadn't been revived before.
- Face Death with Dignity: Perfect Cell sings to himself "My Way" as he is completely destroyed by Gohan.
- Flipping the Bird: When Trunks is about to return to his own time, Vegeta says his goodbyes by flipping him off, and Trunks responds with the same. However, the fact that they're both smiling while they flip each other off shows that they now have a better understanding of each other as father and son.
- Many fans were fearful that, due to increasing difficulty in production of the abridged series, this might be the final episode of DBZA. The first clue that they would later announce Season 4 (the Buu saga) was the playing of one of the BGM's of the Buu sagaa somber version of its closing music, Bokutachi Wa Tenshi Dattawhile Goku was announcing his decision to stay dead (for now).
- Another nod is Tien telling Gohan and the others to watch out for Vegeta should the world be threatened once again after Cell is defeated. What can be seen as a throw away line due to Tiens hate boner for the Saiyan Prince actually hints at Vegetas actions early in the Buu Saga.
- And Tien's last words on the Lookout to Future Trunks, toward the Androids of his timeline:Tien: Go wreck their shit.
Trunks: That's the idea.
- And Tien's last words on the Lookout to Future Trunks, toward the Androids of his timeline:
- Android 17 mentioning the boat he wanted to use to get to Kame House after being revived can also be a Call-Forward to his original desire to get a boat in the Universe Survival arc of Dragon Ball Super.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: If you pause around the 10:08 mark during Cell's Really Dead Montage when Semi-Perfect Cell performs Solar Flare, there's a brief image of Imperfect Cell posing suggestively in a singlet while drooling.
- Fun with Subtitles: When he appears, King Furry has three lines (all brief barks). In the English *Canada* Gag Sub, the second line is attributed to "King Owo", and the third line (in response to his officer stating they can't go out because the orgy is starting) is attributed to "King Yiff".Guardsman: Well, King Furry, it seems that we were victorious today.
King Furry: *woof* (Gag Sub Translation: You don't really think that he did it, do you?)
Guardsman: Yes sir, I do believe it was the son of that "Goku" fellow. Unfortunately, the world may never know the truth.
King Furry: *woof* (Gag Sub Translation: I need some fresh air.)
Guardsman: We'll go for walkies later, sir. The orgy has begun.
King Furry: *whines* (Gag Sub Translation: Bunch of idiots...)
- Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex: The Stinger shows Android 18 finally doing this with Krillin. The people of Earth also decide to throw an orgy once Mr. Satan announces that Cell is dead.
- Good People Have Good Sex: The Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex between Krillin and 18 is heavily implied to be enjoyed on both sides.Krillin: HA HA!
18: *uff* Wow!
- Heroic RRoD: Gohan after finally killing Cell was pretty much mostly shut down.
- Hypocrite: Forgetting that Dragon Balls mean Death Is Cheap and Trunks can be resurrected, Vegeta attacks Cell and winds up injured. Gohan lays into him for this... and then notes he himself got injured protecting Vegeta from a fatal blow that the Dragon Balls could just as easily remedy, the irony of which is far from lost on him.
- I Have This Friend...: After Perfect Cell returns, Krillin asks Gohan if Cell might vomit out another 18 if he hits him hard enough. You know, for a friend.
- I Need to Go Iron My Dog: Yamcha wants to go back to Trunks' time. He backs off and goes home when Trunks figures out it's because Bulma is single in his time.
- Ironic Echo: In Part 2, Gohan reveals with a quiet menace that he's not afraid of killing Cell because "There's no point in being afraid of the inevitable." In Part 3, Piccolo tells Gohan not to be afraid of Cell as the latter starts charging his final Kamehameha. An amused Cell agrees, throwing Gohan's line back at him as a way of getting the kid to accept death.
- It Has Been an Honor: As the battle between Cell and Gohan reaches its climax. Yamcha tells Tien that he's a major asshole. But likewise his best friend. Tien returns the sentiment.
- It Never Gets Any Easier: Following Trunks' death, Yamcha remembers just what it's like to die and come back to life, and wonders if dying a second time is easier. Krillin replies that it's actually worse.
- It's All My Fault: As he confesses his fears to his father during the beam struggle against Cell, this is spoken word for word by Gohan. Immediately leads into Goku's Rousing Speech.
- Killed Off for Real: Goku intends to stay dead this time (for now), since he seems to attract trouble to Earth.
- Locked Out of the Loop: Only after Goku tells Gohan to say hi to his baby brother for him does Gohan finally learn Chi-Chi is pregnant. His reaction doubles as a call-back to Bulma learning there were no Dragon Balls for a time.
- Malaproper: When Goku explains his reasoning for staying dead, he describes himself as the "common dominator" in terms of why Raditz, Vegeta, and Freeza came to Earth, and why the Androids and Cell were made. He means "common denominator". Of course...
- Mood Whiplash:
- Cell's Really Dead Montage with him singing "My Way" is shortly followed by an upbeat "Dramatic Finish!"
- There's a touching moment just before the end credits when Goku from the afterlife pats Gohan on the back and Gohan stares into the sky at his overlay smiling proudly. Then Krillin notices that Gohan's looking at seemingly nothing and gets confused.
- A 'Thank You' to the Patreon supporters is shown near the end, accompanied by a picture of Android 16's soul in Heaven playing with birds as a music box version of "Day of Fate" plays. It's sandwiched between the two parts of The Stinger in which Krillin and 18 have their Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex.
- Meaningful Name: "Necrosis" (the process of unnatural cell death) references, of course, the (permanent) death of Cell himself. An artificially created being, dying a non-natural death.
- Mythology Gag: Android 17 awakening after the wish from Shenron mirrors his flashback scene in the Dragon Ball Super manga.
- Oh, Crap!: Cell, again, when Vegeta attacks him from behind, breaking his concentration long enough for Gohan to deliver the coup de grâce.
- O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Gohan berating Vegeta for picking up the Idiot Ball again and getting in the way, and Vegeta sincerely apologising, is what convinces Gohan just how fucked they are this time.
- Papa Bear: In a classic case of "not realizing what you had until you lose it", Vegeta doesn't take Trunks' death at the hands of Cell very well.Vegeta: MY BABY BOY!!!
- Percussive Therapy: Gohan threatens Cell with this after the latter returns from Goku's Heroic Sacrifice.Gohan: I'm not even mad you're still alive. I've got some shit to work through.
- Pet the Dog: Later, when he comes back in his Super Perfect form, he recounts the circumstances surrounding his survival and return with increased power. Just before he can name what he has become, Yamcha blurts out "Perfecter Cell!" Cell responds in a semi-casual way indicating that, while what Yamcha said was accurate, it was a little too silly for him. It almost seemed like Cell, while appreciating Yamcha's attempt, didn't want Yamcha to make (more) a fool of himself in front of others.Cell: I... am now...
Yamcha: Perfect-er Cell!
Cell: Ok, Yamcha, accurate but tone it down.
- Precision F-Strike: With Cell returning after his explosive attack, in his Perfect Form and ready to use a Kamehameha Wave powerful enough to destroy Earth and everyone on it, and Gohan injured after saving Vegeta from yet another one of his screw-ups, the fact that it's all top off with the Saiyan Prince apologizing for it this time tells Gohan just how dire the situation is, allowing him to use this.note Vegeta: I I'm sorry
Gohan: Oh, wow. We are fucked.
- Really Dead Montage: As he dies from the Kamehameha beam struggle, Cell gets one at the end of part 3, complete with him singing a cover of Frank Sinatra's "My Way".
- Relationship Upgrade: Naturally, Krillin and 18 hooking up in The Stinger counts as this.18: But... let's talk later.
- Rewind Gag: The appearance of the Krillin Owned Count once 18 propositions Krillin. Normally, the KOC suddenly appears and ticks up a number, then fades out. Here, it fades in, then ticks down, with the "ding" sound played in reverse.
- Rousing Speech: Goku gives one to Gohan to help him find the resolve to turn the fight around.Goku: Gohan. I want to tell you that if you don't do this, Piccolo's gonna die. Your mom's gonna die. Everyone's gonna die. But before all that, if you don't do this, YOU'RE gonna die. And you're better than that! You're better than HIM! You're better than me!
(Gohan redoubles his efforts, pushing Cell's blast backwards.)
Cell: Whoa, nelly!
Goku: See?! I'm not even close to that strong!note
- Running Gag: The gag where there's a Freeze-Frame Bonus whenever someone does the Solar Flare is continued during Cell's Really Dead Montage.
- Running Gagged: The Krillin Owned Count goes out with a bang, being rewound and then blown up from him and 18 having sex.
- Series Fauxnale: Much like the Cell saga in the series proper, this could very well serve as a final episode if it didn't end with a confirmation of the Buu saga. Especially given that KaiserNeko hinted that it very well could've been.
- The same shout-out to Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series used in The Plan to Eradicate Christmas appears here as Vegeta attempts to attack Cell in revenge for Trunks' death.
- As part of his Really Dead Montage, Cell sings a cover of Frank Sinatra's "My Way." The backing track comes from the Sing version.
- After Gohan kills Cell, the "Dramatic Finish!" announcement from Dragon Ball Fighter Z is played.
- Sore Loser: In the end, Cell averts this when Gohan actually wins: despite Cell's initial reaction to Gohan winning their Beam-O-War, he takes his defeat in stride, and goes out singing.
- Spared by the Adaptation: As a payoff to the jokes about him being "soulless", Android 16 is shown in the end as indeed having a soul, and having been sent to Heaven in the afterlife.note
- Stealth Pun: The Krillin Owned Count is blown up by Krillin's Scatter Bullet while he and 18 are having sex. In other words, it went out with a bang.
- Straw Loser: More for Yamcha:
- When it seems like the world might come to an end, Tenshinhan warns Yamcha not to say "I love you".
- King Kai calls Yamcha an asshole for specifying in his wish to revive all of Cell's victims on Earth, meaning King Kai stays dead.
- When Yamcha hopes to use the second wish to treat himself, Krillin interrupts and Yamcha meekly backs down.
- Yamcha hopes to go back to the future with Trunks, with Trunks figuring out that he just wants to get with Future Bulma.
- Theme Tune Cameo: The opening theme of the Buu saga, "We Gotta Power", plays over the screen announcing DBZA Season 4.
- Throw the Dog a Bone: In The Stinger, Krillin and Android 18 have sex, obliterating the Krillin Owned Count in the process. We also learn that Krillin is apparently... well-endowed.
- Took a Level in Kindness: After being recreated by Dende, Shenron is noted to have mellowed out considerably (more matching Dende's personality than Kami's). As such, he doesn't even snark when they call him to wish back some dead people.
- Troll: Dende tries to do this. He withholds that his version of Shenron still can't revive people who had been revived before in the hopes that Krillin would be killed. This means Goku can't be revived by Shenron either.
- Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: When the Z-Fighters offer their condolences for Goku's death and Gohan (knowing they're about to use the Dragon Balls) is accepting of it to the point of putting them off.Gohan: You, guys, it's fine! He's dead!
Yamcha: There's a lot to unpack, there.
- Verbal Backspace: Krillin complains about the inability to turn 17 and 18 back into full humans, and asks who makes the rules. When it's revealed that it's Mr. Popo who makes the rules, he changes his tune instantly.Shenron: Look, I don't make the rules.
Krillin: Then who does?!
Mr. Popo: Hi.
Krillin: ...because they are incredibly fair and balanced.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Yamcha confesses this sums up his feelings on Tien as it looks like they're about to die.Yamcha: Hey, Tien. Since this is the end...
Tien: If you're about to say, "I love you," I swear to God...
Yamcha: Actually, I was gonna say, "You're the biggest asshole I know."
Tien: (eyes widen, surprised) Oh.
Yamcha: (looks away) And you're also my best friend.
Tien: (also looks away) So are you, man.
- And then when they part on the Lookout:Tien: Well, I'd better get home. I told Chiaotzu if I wasn't dead by the end of the day, that we'd eat out.
Yamcha: Heh... gay.
Tien: (smiling genuinely) I'll miss you too, Yamcha.
- And then when they part on the Lookout:
- Warts and All: The final resolution that Gohan, and to a lesser degree Trunks, comes to is despite their fathers' multiple faults, they're still ultimately good people and care about them.
- Waxing Lyrical: Cell taunts Gohan with a line from Harry Chapin's Cat's in the Cradle, a song about the distance that can grow between a father and a son.Cell: Awww, is the cat in the cradle? Here, let me put you in a grave.
- Wham Line: "Dragon Ball Z Abridged will return with SEASON 4!"
- You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Goku's dialogue in Part 3 is almost entirely this. He tells Gohan that he can beat Cell, tells his friends that they'll be fine without him and his closing dialogue is him talking about how proud he is that everyone he's met has come so far.
- You Have Got to Be Kidding Me!:
- Gohan's decision to take a hit for Vegeta in Part 3 earns scorn from Cell, Tien, and Piccolo. Gohan's rationale is that he won't let Cell kill anyone else while he's living, but even he kicks himself for it soon afterward.Cell: For Vegeta? Really?
Tien: Yeah, really?
- Gohan also calls out Vegeta for choosing the worst possible time to finally start caring about Trunks. Of course, he immediately lampshades his own hypocrisy.
- Gohan's decision to take a hit for Vegeta in Part 3 earns scorn from Cell, Tien, and Piccolo. Gohan's rationale is that he won't let Cell kill anyone else while he's living, but even he kicks himself for it soon afterward.