Contains spoilers of Dragon Ball Super chapter #87Recently, Dragon Ball Super has spared no expense when it comes to illustrating the gory nature of its most brutal fights. The series’ most recent chapter shows explicit body horror, even more so than previous arcs such as the Moro Saga have dared to capture. These moments, becoming increasingly more common, show that Dragon Ball is headed in a new R-Rated direction, perhaps even one geared towards a more mature audience.
Chapter 87 of Dragon Ball Super opens with the battle between Gas and the combined forces of Goku, Vegeta, and Granolah. It was thought that Granolah’s last attack might have finally defeated Gas for good, but the heroes quickly come to a horrifying realization. Gas’ power is no longer tied to the state of his body, and in turn, he can pretty much be ripped to shreds and remain at the same power as always. This is demonstrated when he becomes increasingly emaciated and takes damage to the point where his skin and flesh begin peeling off, leaving him more of a walking carcass than a fighter. The graphic detail put into the breakdown of Gas’ body from overuse of his power and battle damage perfectly illustrates the direction Dragon Ball Super seems to be headed in.
Even within previous arcs like the Moro Saga, Dragon Ball Super has demonstrated its commitment to bringing more grisly scenes to each battle. Dragon Ball Z had its fair share of violence and blood, but Super is beginning to take things to a level never before seen in any Dragon Ball medium. For example, Dragon Ball Z scenes like Krillin being impaled by Frieza, something which was considered especially heinous and brutal back then could be considered a dime a dozen in Dragon Ball Super. Several characters have already suffered majorly gruesome injuries, most notably Toyotaro’s signature ‘hand piercing through a chest’ move has been depicted several times now. In addition to the gore itself, Dragon Ball Super has begun to illustrate a level of body horror never before seen within the franchise.
The slow degradation of Gas’ body until he effectively becomes a corpse is a direct example of where Dragon Ball Super’s art style is headed. While brutal fight scenes have become relatively commonplace, the amount of sheer body horror being depicted in the series is becoming more prevalent than ever. The magnitude of this body horror seems to be ramping up every arc as well, going from Zamasu having half of himself disintegrated, to Moro’s full-on Akira-style bodily expansion, to now Gas’ skin being rendered from his body before having his flesh vaporized by Frieza. Fans have been clamoring for Dragon Ball Super to take on a more mature tone for years now, and it seems as though the series is at least going to continue taking its art in this more explicit direction.
With the return of Dragon Ball’s resident sadist, Frieza, it seems as though the next arc is bound to feature some of Dragon Ball Super’s bloodiest and perhaps most horrifying scenes yet. As Dragon Ball Super’s fights become increasingly more gory, it remains to be seen if these downright cruel fates end up befalling one of the Z-Fighters in future skirmishes…
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