[Top 10] Dragon Ball Best Trunks Fights

Trunks' Top 10 Fights
Trunks, your resident time-traveling swordsman from the future. Copyright 2016, Toei Animation.

You don't get to be Vegeta's kid without living up to his warrior legacy.

The Dragon Ball franchise has frequently developed its characters in creative ways. In the manga Dragon Ball Super, for instance, Vegeta’s fight with Moro emphasizes his turn from anti-hero to stoic hero, for instance. One character who’s always bringing change, though, is Trunks, Vegeta’s half-Saiyan son. To honor his (their?) stalwart journey going forward (which ironically makes much use of the past), perhaps we should take a look at Trunks’ top ten fights in Dragon Ball history.

10. Kid Trunks (& Goten) vs. Android 18, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

Like what kids do to get on amusement park rides, but with fighting.

Context of the Fight: 

(Kid) Trunks succeeded in the World Martial Arts Tournament’s Youth Division, but what he really wants is to fight in the Adult Division! Well, with the help of Goten, he gets his wish as the two masquerade as Mighty Mask and make their way to the tournament finals. Unfortunately, their opponent is Android 18, who thinks that Mighty Mask is a little too familiar…

What Makes the Kid Trunks (& Goten) vs. Android 18 Fight Awesome: 

•    Despite Android 18’s cool appearance, she’s inwardly surprised that they have as much power as they do.
•    Tournament spectators aren’t able to figure out “Mighty Mask’s” obvious ruse until 18 exposes them.
•    When Trunks and Goten get busted and are disqualified, they fly away like crooks caught in the act. (Cheese it!)

9. Future Trunks vs. (Alternate-Future) Androids 17 & 18, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

Sure, androids, you'll win - not like Trunks wouldn't come here without a plan, right?

Context of the Fight:

With the main timeline at peace following the defeat of Cell, Future Trunks uses his time machine to set things right in his own timeline. Making use of the power-boost he got from training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber, he challenges his timeline’s Androids 17 & 18 in an effort to end them for good. The latter pair don’t think much of Trunk’s boast at first, but they soon find themselves eating their words.

What Makes the Future Trunks vs. (Alternate-Future) Androids 17 & 18 Fight Awesome:

•    Trunks shows off the power he got from his trip to the past.
•    The androids’ reaction to Trunks utterly dominating them, which is karmic to say the least.
•    Trunks is finally able to avenge the deaths of his timeline’s people, especially that of Gohan, who was his mentor and martial arts master.

8. Future Trunks vs. (Alternate-Future) Imperfect Cell, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

Cell ignores Trunks' obvious superiority, to his own detriment.

Context of the Fight:

The androids are dust, but there’s still one threat left in the alternate-future timeline that needs dealing with – Cell! Future Trunks manages to confront the creepy crawly trying to steal the time-machine, bluntly telling him that the androids are dead and he’s next. Like the androids before him, he doesn’t take Trunks seriously, but we know what happens when people underestimate this time-traveler.

What makes the Future Trunks vs. (Alternate-Future) Imperfect Cell Fight Awesome:

•    Trunks won’t even let Cell use the time-machine to terrorize some *other* timeline – he wants Cell to end, no matter where or when in spacetime.
•    Cell agape at how Trunks can so easily best him, given his data indicating the half-Saiyan shouldn’t be so powerful.
•    Trunks eliminates the final threat to his world, restoring peace to the land. (For now…)

7. Future Trunks vs. King Cold, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

Trunks makes a counter-offer to King Cold's proposals.

Context of the Fight: 

Future Trunks quickly sliced and smoked the mechanized Frieza, and it looks like Frieza’s dad, King Cold, is next on the chopping block. But not so fast! King Cold thinks he’s got Trunks’ number, and that only Trunks’ sword gave him the strength to defeat Cold’s beloved son. He then tries to put this theory to the test, with disastrous results.

What Makes the Future Trunks vs. King Cold Fight Awesome:

•    King Cold just saw his son get slaughtered and yet immediately moves to act like everything is still fine, even chatting up Trunks leisurely.
•    Trunks shows King Cold that, rather than the tool itself, it’s the wielder who has true strength.
•    King Cold has the gall to try bribing Trunks at near-death, oblivious to the fact that such behavior is the reason Trunks is killing the father-son pair.

6. Future Trunks vs. Goku Black (1st Round), Dragon Ball Super

Trunks: "Goku?! But you're supposed to be dead - and since when have you been so articulate?!"

Context of the Fight: 

So, Future Trunks’ post-android, post-Cell timeline is at peace, on the mend and slowly but surely rebuilding civilization. Happy ending, right? Wrong! Onto the stage now steps Goku Black, a mysterious individual who seems exactly like Goku (sans heart-virus) except for an updated wardrobe and a penchant for genocide. Trunks tries to take on the new foe alone, but things quickly take a turn for the desperate. 

What Makes the Future Trunks vs. Goku Black (1st Round) Fight Awesome:

•    The audience gets one of its first peaks into the mentality of Goku Black, who seems to have a real god-complex (*wink*) as well as a hatred for mortals.
•    Black doesn’t even need to go Super-Saiyan to have the advantage against Trunks.
•    Trunks, despite being plainly furious at Black’s destruction, knows when to fold ‘em and make for a strategic retreat. (As well as when to call for reinforcements…)

5. Kid Trunks vs. Goten, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

Nice job keeping it on the downlow, kids.

Context of the Fight:

The kids Trunks and Goten have made quick work of their respective opponents in the Junior Division of the World Martial Arts Tournament. Now, though, they must face each other in the finals, and only one can claim the championship! So, while still trying to be ‘inconspicuous’ to the normal people in the crowd, the two show off their moves to see who is the stronger warrior.

What Makes the Kid Trunks vs. Goten Fight Awesome:

•    The match is a clear callback to the ‘slightly’ more grounded martial arts fights that Dragon Ball had in its early days, like ‘Goku vs. Jackie Chun’ or ‘Goku vs. Tien’.
•    Despite said callback, the fight marks the first time the people of Earth get a close-up of Super Saiyans in battle. (At least without Mr. Satan’s constant claims of special effects and illusions.)
•    The battle ends in a surprisingly anti-climactic way, with Goten losing due to just barely touching the stands outside the ring.

4. Fused Trunks (i.e., Gotenks) vs. Super Buu, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

"We thought about going with Truten at first, but that just sounds silly."

Context of the Fight:

The time limit for Goku’s day-trip to Earth from Other World is up, and he’s staying with Gohan while the teen awakens his inner power. But now that neither they nor Vegeta can face Majin Buu, who’s left to fight the pink powerhouse? Look no further than Trunks and Goten, kids who can fuse together to fight Super Buu as Gotenks!

What Makes Fused Trunks (i.e., Gotenks) vs. Super Buu Fight Awesome:

•    The audience gets a more accurate picture of Buu’s power ever since his evil half absorbed his good half.
•    Gotenks is endearingly obsessed with playing the role of ‘mighty hero’, and has a bunch of creative and humorous fighting techniques.
•    If Gotenks’ Super Saiyan 3 transformation is anything to go by, it seems Trunks and Goten both have potential fighting strength they have yet to unlock individually.

3. Future Trunks vs. Perfect Cell, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

Trunks' equivalent of Roid Rage.

Context of the Fight: 

Vegeta’s arrogance has cost him again, as allowing Cell to reach his Perfect Form has made the latter too strong for the former. However, now that Vegeta has been beaten to unconsciousness, Future Trunks can face Cell without worrying about humiliating his princely father. Still, will Trunks’ Ultra Super Saiyan transformation be enough to stop the newly-arrived Perfect Cell?

What Makes the Future Trunks vs. Perfect Cell Fight Awesome:

•    Trunks had to stand by and watch as his father was beaten to a pulp, so he takes all that anger out on Cell when he gets his own turn to fight.
•    The fight starts with Trunks seeming to have a clear advantage, which could lead one to think he might really be able to beat Cell. 
•    Cell calls out Trunks’ own pride when he points out the Ultra Super Saiyan transformation lacks the speed necessary to land a finishing blow. (Guess he really is Vegeta’s son.)

2. Future Trunks vs. Fused Zamasu, Dragon Ball Super

I consider this to be Trunks' Super Saiyan Paladin form.

Context of the Fight:

Goku Black and Future Zamasu have merged to become Fused Zamasu. His strength is such that he not only beats Goku and Vegeta’s Super Saiyan Blue forms, but even Goku & Vegeta’s own fusion, Super Saiyan Blue Vegito. Yet, despite these odds, Future Trunks jumps into the fray to face this mad god, and seems to have new power at his disposal.

What Makes the Future Trunks vs. Fused Zamasu Awesome:

•    Trunks has the nerve to face an enemy that even Goku & Vegeta’s fused form, which could probably outclass a few deities, couldn’t defeat.
•    Trunks’ speech about the power of human beings, who can overcome trials through mutual cooperation, trust, and friendship, is very heartfelt.
•    The Spirit-Bomb-like powerup Trunks gains seems to put him on par with Fused Zamasu (or perhaps makes him stronger than the guy entirely).

1. Future Trunks vs. Cyborg/Mecha Frieza, Dragon Ball Z/DBZ:Kai

"Slice to meet you, Frieza!...damn it, that line sucks. Can I get a time-travel do-over?"

Context of the Fight:

Future Trunks squares off against Cyborg/Mecha Frieza, who’s come to Earth to seek revenge against Goku. Deciding that he won’t give Frieza the chance to see Goku, though, Trunks quickly turns Super Saiyan and easily handles whatever the mechanical monster can dish out. From there, the fight comes to a quick conclusion with what is now considered an iconic scene – see the clip above!

What Makes the Future Trunks vs. Cyborg/Mecha Frieza Fight Awesome:

•    Trunks begins and ends the fight looking like a complete boss. That the audience doesn’t yet know his identity only adds to the mystique.
•    The sheer shock from Frieza at seeing another Super Saiyan, which aggravates the trauma he endured from Goku on Namek.
•    Our seeing Frieza, who even Super Saiyan Goku took his time to defeat, face such a quick and undignified defeat.

Let this list show that Trunks is a character who introduces change and yet himself also changes over time. Those fights of his included here, however, are of my own choosing and based on my own criteria. That being said, if you want to let me know what you think, or what your own top Dragon Ball Trunks fights are, feel free to comment below!

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Delighted at sharing his name with Middle-Earth's most faithful companion, Sam takes his own journeys into stories and games with the hope of sharing them with the world.
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