Dragon Ball: Why Ultimate Gohan Doesn't Go Super Saiyan While in his Ultimate form, Gohan never goes Super Saiyan in Dragon Ball Z or Dragon Ball Super – and there”s a good reason for this.
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In Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball Super, Gohan never goes Super Saiyan while in his Ultimate form – but why? Gohan, one of the strongest heroes in the Dragon Ball anime, has been able to achieve three high levels of power: Super Saiyan, Super Saiyan 2, and the Ultimate form. Gohan was the first character to reach both the Ultimate form and Super Saiyan 2.
After Super Saiyan 3 Gotenks failed to defeat Super Buu in Dragon Ball Z, Gohan became their next best chance at defeating him. After Old Kai is released from the Z Sword, he unlocks Gohan”s full potential. This new power level has since been named the “Ultimate” form. As Ultimate Gohan, his hair kept its natural black color and Gohan was able to fight on par with Super Buu without going Super Saiyan. The implication was that it was no longer necessary – or possible – since Gohan had access to his full power without leaving his base form. Gohan went back to normal after the saga was over, but was finally able to achieve it again while being trained by Piccolo in the lead-up to the Tournament of Power.
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Gohan gives it his all against fighters like Top and Dyspo in the Tournament of Power in Dragon Ball Super, but once again, Ultimate Gohan doesn”t go Super Saiyan. This was puzzling for some fans during the Buu Saga, but Dragon Ball Super finally offers an explanation when Goku simply asks Gohan why he doesn”t go Super Saiyan. Gohan says that he doesn”t need to do that anymore. According to Gohan, the Ultimate form is something that only he is able to do, and therefore he has chosen to “pursue this form“.
The manga version of the Tournament of Power elaborates on this during Gohan”s fight with Kefla (a battle which doesn”t actually happen in the anime). When Kefla asks why he doesn”t transform, Gohan confirms that not going Super Saiyan is actually a choice. By avoiding the Super Saiyan form, Gohan is embracing the human side of his heritage. Unlike Goku and Vegeta, Gohan is only half-Saiyan.
It should also be pointed out that Gohan has a good reason for not needing a Super Saiyan transformation. Having his potential unlocked by Grand Kai meant that he gained access to “all” his power, so going Super Saiyan wouldn”t do anything for him while in his Ultimate form. The Super Saiyan form can”t bring out any more of his power if he”s already using it.
Gohan”s plan is to get stronger by focusing on his Ultimate form, which means that he”s unlikely to ever achieve – or even attempt to achieve – the Super Saiyan God or Super Saiyan Blue transformations. But even so, Gohan still has plenty of room to grow as a fighter. Gohan”s conversations with Goku and Kefla indicate that he still plans to get much stronger in the future, so it”ll be interesting to see where the next installment in the franchise takes the character.