|Dragon Ball character|
Vegeta, drawn by Akira Toriyama
|First appearance||Dragon Ball chapter #204: Sayonara, Son Goku (1988)|
|Created by||Akira Toriyama|
Brian Drummond (Ocean)
Chris Sabat (adult), Laura Bailey (kid) (Funimation)
Vegeta (Japanese: ベジータ Hepburn: Bejīta) is a fictional character in the Dragon Ball manga series created by Akira Toriyama. Vegeta first appears in chapter #204 Sayonara, Son Goku (さようなら孫悟空 Sayōnara Son Gokū), published in Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine on November 7, 1988 seeking the wish-granting Dragon Balls to gain immortality.
Vegeta is the Prince of an extraterrestrial race of warriors known as the Saiyans just like the series' protagonist Goku. Vegeta is extremely vain and proud, constantly referring to his heritage throughout the series. He believes he is the strongest fighter in the Universe and becomes obsessed with surpassing Goku after fighting him. After his loss to Goku and the Z fighters, Vegeta later reluctantly unites with the heroes to thwart greater threats to the universe. Throughout the series, Vegeta's role changes from villain to antihero and later as one of the heroes, while remaining a rival to Goku. Vegeta's character, particularly his personality, has been well received. He is one of the Dragon Ball franchise's most popular characters.
Creation and design
Following the trend that names of members of the Saiyan race are puns on vegetables, Vegeta's name is a pun of the word vegetable itself. Toriyama stated that when he received a lot of fan mail telling him not to kill Vegeta, he purposely did just that. After the release of Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, Toriyama expressed interest in having Vegeta be the lead in the event of another animated feature, though he insisted this was only his intent and no decision had been formed.
Vegeta is the prince of the Saiyan race, being the son of King Vegeta, with Planet Vegeta named after his father. Vegeta is shown to be exceptionally vain and egotistical. Only in very few instances is he seen to be afraid of opponents, such as against Freeza. Arguably, his most defining trait is his rivalry with Goku and obsession to surpass him in power.
Vegeta has a signature hair style that firmly stands upwards, with a prominent widow's peak. Like all full-blooded Saiyans, he possesses black eyes, jet black hair that never grows in length, and had a tail before Yajirobe cut it off. Vegeta is noticeably shorter than Goku, although a visible shift in Akira Toriyama's artistic style lessens this difference later in the series. Vegeta continues to don the traditional Saiyan armor for a large portion of his appearances, until he integrates into Earthly society eventually favoring clothing more characteristic of a human altogether.
Vegeta is introduced as the proud prince of the Saiyan (サイヤ人 Saiya-jin) race. He travels to Earth with his comrade Nappa to use the Dragon Balls to wish for immortality. Nappa easily fights off Earth's heroes and kills Tenshinhan, Chaozu, and Piccolo in the process. Goku then arrives after completing his training with Kaiō-sama. Goku easily defeats Nappa who is then killed by Vegeta, for the shame of being defeated by a low class saiyan such as Goku. Vegeta fights and beats Goku in a very close fight after resorting to his Ozaru form, but is unable to beat the rest of the heroes due to his sustained injuries. Exhausted and being consistently harassed by Gohan, Kuririn and Yajirobe, he barely escapes with his life and is humiliated by the fact that Goku pleaded with Kuririn to spare his life. Vegeta travels to planet Namek in an attempt to wish for immortality using that planet's Dragon Balls, cutting the tyrant Freeza off from making the same wish in the process. Upon arrival, Vegeta manages to kill many of Freeza's henchmen and also mercilessly destroys a whole defenseless Namekian village for their Dragon Ball. Later on Vegeta is forced to team up with Gohan, Goku, Piccolo, and Kuririn so they can fight off Freeza. He also kills most members of the Ginyu Force. Ultimately, he is defeated and subsequently killed by Freeza while asking Goku to avenge him and all the other Saiyans. Vegeta is unintentionally revived with a wish from the Dragon Balls from Earth.
After Freeza's final defeat, Vegeta chooses to stay on Earth and has a son named Trunks with Bulma. Three years later, Vegeta finally becomes a Super Saiyan and easily destroys Android 19, sent by Dr. Gero to kill Goku. However, even as a Super Saiyan, he is easily defeated by Android 18. Afterwards, Vegeta ascends beyond the Super Saiyan level while training with Trunks from an alternate dimension in the Room of Spirit and Time (精神と時の部屋) and pummels the artificial life form Cell, who has absorbed Android 17. Vegeta's overconfidence leads him to allow Cell to absorb Android 18, upon which Cell achieves his "perfect" form. After Vegeta fails to defeat Perfect Cell, he is forced to participate in Cell's martial arts tournament known as the Cell Games, in which he makes a crucial intervention so Gohan can overpower and defeat Cell in his perfect form.
Seven years later, Vegeta allows himself to be consumed by Bobbidi's evil power for his own desire to become powerful enough to fight and defeat Goku. He then goes on an indiscriminate killing spree to provoke Goku to fight him. However, when the monster Majin Boo is revived as a result of the energy released from their fight, Vegeta knocks out Goku from behind after deceiving Goku by feigning a truce. Vegeta then faces Majin Boo alone and ends up sacrificing himself in an attempt to defeat Boo, dedicating his sacrifice to Bulma, Trunks, and Goku. With all other fighters dead or absorbed, Vegeta is allowed to recover his body and returns to Earth to help Goku, the last warrior remaining, against the threat of Boo. He reluctantly combines bodies with Goku using the Potara earrings, to create the fused warrior Vegito, who completely overwhelms Boo with his strength. Eventually, Vegito allows himself to be absorbed into Boo's body to free the other heroes absorbed by Boo, but this leads to the splitting of the fusion. Goku and Vegeta manage to free their allies who have been absorbed by Boo, causing him to undergo a new transformation, which results in his return to his original Kid Boo form. On the Kaiō-shin's planet, Vegeta battles Boo again to buy time for Goku to gather energy for the Genki Dama, which he uses to defeat Majin Boo once and for all. It is during this fight that Vegeta finally admits Goku as both his superior and friend.
In Toriyama's films and Dragon Ball Super
In addition, Vegeta appears in eight of the Dragon Ball Z movies; in the sixth, Vegeta comes to Goku's aid against Cooler, foiling his attempt at powering the Big Gete Star with their energy by overloading it; in the seventh, Vegeta appears to aid the others in combating a new wave of androids, destroying Android 15; in the eighth, Vegeta shows hesitation in fighting Broly due to his immense strength though he overcomes it in time to supply Goku with his energy, contributing to Broly's defeat; in the ninth, Vegeta withdraws from attending a tournament, disillusioned by Goku's death, but comes to help Trunks when believing he is in danger; in the twelfth, after having a difficult time with Janemba, Vegeta fuses with Goku to form Gogeta who defeats Janemba easily; in the thirteenth, Vegeta fights Hirudegarn after he steps on his home; in the fourteenth, Vegeta tries appeasing Beerus so that he will not destroy the Earth and surpasses Goku and even Beerus, briefly following a power boost of rage brought on by Beerus slapping Bulma; and lastly, in the fifteenth, Vegeta trains off planet with Whis and returns to Earth to combat the resurrected Freeza, being killed by him when he destroys the Earth.
After the latter two films, Vegeta participates in a tournament where he defeats Frost, Magetta, and Cabba, but is defeated by the assassin Hit. He travels to Planet Potaufeu to retrieve Goten and Trunks, where he fights a copy of himself. He is then reunited with Trunks and begins training to fight Goku Black, also training Trunks for the fight. Vegeta travels to the future to counter Goku Black, but is defeated and returns to the past. Vegeta heals and returns to the future for a rematch. failing to defeat Goku Black before traveling to the present, where he trains, giving him enough strength to best Goku Black in their next encounter. Vegeta and Goku then meet their match against Zamasu's fused form, forcing them to once again fuse into Vegito, who defuses from overusing his energy. Vegeta later aids Trunks in defeating Zamasu. Vegeta loses a battle to Arale, and later declines training with Goku due to Bulma's pregnancy. When his daughter, Bulla, is born, Vegeta develops a strong attachment to her and becomes very protective over her wellbeing.
Vegeta decides to enter in the Tournament of Power in order to protect his family. During the tournament Vegeta is successful in knocking out numerous fighters. He knocks out Toppo, who achieved the power of a Hakaishin or God of Destruction, and then aids Goku in fighting the last remaining member of Universe 11, Jiren. With 2 minutes remaining in the tournament, Jiren knocks Vegeta out, who then sends the last of his remaining power to Goku.
In other media
In filler episodes of Dragon Ball Z, set during the Saiyan arc, Vegeta and Nappa travel to Arlia while in space, being hailed as a hero after saving the people there. After leaving, Vegeta destroys the planet from space. After the Namek arc, Vegeta travels across space in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt at finding Goku, defeating remnants of Freeza's army. After the Boo arc, Vegeta attends a gathering with the other heroes.
In Dragon Ball GT, Vegeta is confronted by a Baby-possessed Gohan. Baby possessed Vegeta during their battle despite strong resistance by Vegeta, and the resulting Baby/Vegeta fusion battles Goku. Vegeta is later split from Baby's body before Baby is destroyed. Later, he fights Super Android #17, but again, he is knocked out and nearly killed. When Omega Shenron wreaks havoc, he fights with Goku as a Super Saiyan 4 but the two eventually revert to normal. Afterwards, Vegeta says a farewell to Goku, who leaves the duty of protecting Earth in Vegeta's hands before he flies off into the sky on Shenron.
Vegeta has appeared in many video games related to the Dragon Ball franchise as both a playable character and boss. In several games, Vegeta is capable of transforming into a Super Saiyan 3, first introduced in Dragon Ball Z: Raging Blast. In the 2003 game Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2, Vegeta can be absorbed by Boo as one of the alternate forms exclusive to the game. In the 2010 arcade game Dragon Ball: Heroes, Vegeta bests Super 17 before and after he merges with Android 18. A Time Breaker-possessed version of Vegeta also appears in the game. In the 2015 game Dragon Ball: Xenoverse, Vegeta serves as a mentor to the player character, teaching Galic Gun, Final Barrage, Shine Shot and Final Flash. He has also appeared in other non Dragon Ball-related video games, such as Jump Super Stars, Jump Ultimate Stars, and even in the Dragon Ball Z/One Piece/Naruto crossover game Battle Stadium D.O.N.
Vegeta has made several appearances in other manga, one of which is in Akira Toriyama's Dragon Ball self-parody Neko Majin, where he battles the titular character. In the Dragon Ball and One Piece crossover, Cross Epoch, Vegeta is re-imagined as a captain of a crew of air pirates which includes Trunks, Usopp, and Nico Robin. On September 15, 2006, Vegeta made a guest appearance in a chapter of the Kochira Katsushika-ku Kameari Kōen-mae Hashutsujo manga, Super Kochikame, entitled Kochira Namek-Sei Dragon Kōen-mae Hashutsujo (こちらナメック星ドラゴン公園前派出所, This is the Dragon Police Station in front of the Park on Planet Namek). Vegeta appears in the Karate Shoukoushi Kohinata Minoru manga in Chapter 178. Two characters go to a restaurant that features live Muay Thai boxing and Vegeta is in the background cheering. He also makes a single panel appearance in Toriyama's 2014 Dragon Ball Minus: The Departure of the Fated Child special.
Vegeta has also been the victim of parody: the Weekly Shōnen Jump Gag Special 2005 issue released on November 12, 2004 featured a Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo one-shot Dragon Ball parody manga. The manga was a humorous retelling of the battle between Goku and Vegeta initial battle; Jelly Jiggler was Goku and Don Patch was Vegeta.
Vegeta has made two contributions to music: in the eighth installment of Hit Song Collection series entitled Character Special 2, Vegeta sings the song "Vegeta-sama no Oryori Jigoku!!". The song focuses of Vegeta cooking a special Okonomiyaki, and in Dragon Ball Kai: Song Collection he sings the song "Saiyan Blood", which he brags about how great he is. Other Dragon Ball-related songs that center around Vegeta are "Koi no Nazonazo" by Kuko and Tricky Shirai which focuses on his and Bulma's relationship and "Ai wa Ballad no Yō ni~Vegeta no Theme~" by Shin Oya which represents Vegeta's reflections on his life and then current family.
Up until his tail was cut off, Vegeta could turn into a gigantic monkey-like creature called an Ōzaru (大猿, lit. "Great Ape") by looking at a full moon, an ability common of all Saiyans with tails. Vegeta has the ability to create and enhance attacks with the use of ki. He also has the ability to use Bukū-jutsu (舞空術, lit: "Air Dancing Technique"), which enables him to fly. Constant training and his Saiyan heritage have given him vast superhuman strength, durability, speed and reflexes. Vegeta can increase his strength, speed, stamina, invulnerability and flight speed many fold if he directs ki into them.
Vegeta is known to give names for his various energy attacks. In his early appearance, Vegeta is seen to use attacks similar to several of the protagonists of the series, such as a Ki Disk Razor (気円斬 Kienzan), a laser-like disk capable of cutting through solid objects, and a ki wave similar to Goku's Kamehameha. One of his better known attacks is the Galick Gun (ギャリック砲 Gyarikku Hō), although he uses it only once in the series proper; during his battle against Goku in an attempt to destroy the Earth. He later develops the Big Bang Attack (ビッグ・バン・アタック Biggu Ban Atakku) and the Final Flash (ファイナルフラッシュ Fainaru Furasshu) techniques, which are much more powerful than his older energy attacks. Vegeta's most commonly used tactics in the series is when he bombards an opponent with an array of small ki blasts. He is not known to have an official name for this attack, but it is occasionally called Rapid-Fire Energy Balls (連続エネルギー弾 Renzoku Enerugī Dan). In Dragon Ball GT, Vegeta displays a powerful new attack, entitling it the Final Shine Attack (ファイナルシャインアタック Fainaru Shain Atakku), where he uses his left hand to fire off a massive beam of green ki that widens with distance. Because of his immense strength and power, Vegeta, along with few other characters from the Dragon Ball franchise, can destroy entire planets with single attacks if he intends to.
Vegeta also possesses several transformations that greatly enhance his abilities to varying degrees. He gains the ability to transform into a Super Saiyan and, through training, can further transform into advanced states of Super Saiyan as the series continues. Vegeta later achieved the immensely powerful Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan (超サイヤ人ゴッドSS（スーパーサイヤ人ゴッドスーパーサイヤ人） Sūpā Saiya-jin Goddo Sūpā Saiya-jin) transformation under Whis's tutelage. During his fight with Jiren, a mortal stronger than a destroyer, Vegeta unlocks a transformation beyond Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan by breaking his very utmost limits. Vegeta can also fuse with Goku and create a warrior who has the combined power and skills of both. One method is by using the Potara earrings, presented to Goku by the Old Kaiō-shin. This results in a 'potara fusion' creating Vegito (ベジット Bejitto, "Vegerot" in Viz Media's manga translation), who, in his reappearance in Dragon Ball Super, can also transform into a Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan. The other method, appearing only in the anime, is by performing the 'Metamorese Fusion Dance', which creates Gogeta (ゴジータ Gojīta).
In Funimation's in house dub, Christopher Sabat has voiced Vegeta in all Dragon Ball media, including video games. While Sabat continued to dub Vegeta's adult incarnation in Dragon Ball Z Kai, Laura Bailey voiced Vegeta's child incarnation in Dragon Ball Z Kai.
Vegeta has generally received praise by various reviewers from manga, anime and other media. Theron Martin from Anime News Network noted Vegeta's pride as being partially responsible for the success of the series. His fight against Goku during the final story arc was also commented to be very entertaining, despite its length as well as Goku and Vegeta's fighting styles, which Martin considered to have become stale. In another review, Theron noted Vegeta's overcoming his pride to help defeat Cell as the best scene from the fight against said antagonist due to how it creates the climax of the scene. Todd Douglass Jr. from DVD Talk commented on Vegeta's skills and anger, noting them to be a good combination for any fight even though it is a one-sided battle due to how powerful he is. Douglass called his reveal as a villain during the appearance of Bobbidi, "the real meat" of the story. Carlos Ross from Them Anime Reviews found Vegeta and Bulma's relationship to have too much comic potential and comments that such characterization was lost.
Vegeta is an extremely popular character in the series, placing fourth in the 1993 Dragon Ball character popularity poll voted on by Weekly Shōnen Jump readers, and moved up to second in the 1995 one. In 2004, fans of the series voted him the second most popular character for a poll in the book Dragon Ball Forever. In About.com "Top 8 Anime Love Stories", Vegeta and Bulma's relationship ranked second with Katherine Luther commenting that such a relationship was unpredictable by fans. Mania Entertainment writer Briana Lawerence listed Vegeta 9th in the article 10 Male Headaches of Anime, criticizing his personality and his repeated desire to surpass Goku's power. Vegeta has appeared in the Anime Grand Prix poll taking high places in the category "best male character" in the 1991 poll and 1992 poll. Vegeta was placed twenty-first in IGN's 2009 top anime character of all-time list, calling him "the original unmitigated bastard" that preceded Light Yagami and Lelouch Lamperouge, and in the tenth spot in 2014. Vegeta came third on IGN's 2014 Top 10 Anime Villains list, stating, "The most famous bad-guy-turned-not-so-bad in all of anime. Vegeta started out as an alien punk with a sadistic streak and an inferiority complex, but over time he became one of Goku's friends, and every now and then, if he was feeling nice that day, he'd help save the world." A Biglobe poll conducted in 2012 listed Vegeta at number 16 of Japanese fans' favorite tsundere characters, the highest among male characters on that list, and a Thai magazine about anime characters also listed him among male tsunderes.
In popular culture
Vegeta's quote "It's over 9000!", referring to Goku's new power level, has become an Internet meme and a popular catchphrase referring to a large number or great quantity. The line originates from episode 21 of the Ocean Productions English dub, "The Return of Goku", where Vegeta was voiced by Brian Drummond. It was altered from the original line, which was "over 8,000!" (8000以上だ…! 8000 ijō da…!). Subsequent releases and dubs have used one of the two numbers.
WWE superstars The New Day wore Vegeta inspired costumes at Wrestlemania 32 as a part of their grand entrance for their match against the League of Nations. The costume worn by the antagonist Killmonger in the 2018 film Black Panther is strikingly similar to Vegeta's costume. Killmonger is portrayed by Michael B. Jordan, who is known to be a fan of Dragon Ball.
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