'Dragon Ball Super': Is Freeza the Key to Goku's Ultra Instinct Mastery?

Dragon Ball Super's latest episode has fans going bananas right now. Not only did the episode see fan-fav rock star Android 17 sacrifice himself, but we also got to see the freakish full power of Jiren unleashed, and got confirmation that next episode of Dragon Ball Super will be Vegeta's last.

There was also a popular fan-theory about how Freeza could have a big moment in the Tournament of Power's finale, but that has been largely debunked by the events of this latest episode. However, there's still a plenty of room left for Freeza to play a different, but no less important role in Universe 7's Tournament of Power victory.

Indeed, Dragon Ball Super may have already foreshadowed the game-saving turn in tournament's ending. If you remember, the first time that Goku unlocked Ultra Instinct to battle Jiren, the effort left him dangerously spent. Other universes jumped in to take advantage of the moment of weakness, which prompted Freeza to pay back an old debt: he gave Goku a portion of his own energy, in order to help his Saiyan nemesis get back on his feet and fight again. It was meant to be a callback to Goku's benevolent save of Freeza in the last chapter of Dragon Ball Z's "Freeza Saga" - but it also could've been more than that: it' could've been a clue as to how Goku and Universe 7 win the Tournament of Power.

Right now, Vegeta is about to give his all (read: his life) to battle Jiren one last time, in order to buy Goku the necessary time to recover his energy. Vegeta will fall in that battle, and the theory was that seeing his BFF sacrifice himself will inspire Goku to unlock that mastered form of Ultra Instinct in episodes 128 - 129.

That theory could still very well be true - with just one caveat: it may take Freeza's help to push Goku over the brink. The real question for long time fans then becomes: why would Freeza do something so benevolent for Goku? The answer to that question undoubtedly is: for his own selfish reasons, as Freeza always does.

Right now Freeza is dead, so there's not exactly much of a risk to him donating the entirety of his remaining energy to Goku, in a bid that the Saiyan fighter will be able to best Jiren. Freeza knows Goku all too well, which means he also knows that Goku would be honor-bound to repay Freeza's sacrifice with a Super Dragon Ball wish that (among other things) brings Freeza back to the land of the living.

This scenario ticks off a lot of boxes, in that it at once:

  • Keeps Freeza consistent with his megalomaniacal character traits.
  • Gives Goku an unexpected means to mastering Ultra Instinct.
  • Helps make an eventual Universe 7 victory a true team effort of sacrifice and bravery (even Freeza).
  • Gives Freeza exactly what he always wanted form the tournament.
  • Sets up interesting possibilities for the next Dragon Ball anime series.
Dragon Ball Super 128 Feeza Death Elimination

Do you think Freeza will be the MVP that helps Universe 7 win?

Dragon Ball Super airs on Crunchyroll Saturday evenings at 7:15 p.m. CST. Adult Swim airs the English dub during its Toonami block Saturday evenings at 9:30 p.m, and is now available to stream on FunimationNOW and Amazon Video.

Dragon Ball SuperSunday at on Fuji Television Network

Dragon Ball Super

Dragon Ball SuperSunday at on Fuji Television Network

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