'Dragon Ball Super' Reveals Jiren's Biggest Weakness

The Dragon Ball Super manga's latest chapter chronicles the final minutes in the Tournament of Power, as Goku and Jiren unleashed their respective powers, in order to fight one-on-one. The fight was a pivotal dance of changing advantages, with Goku manifesting Ultra Instinct "Omen" and then the Perfect Ultra Instinct technique, while Jiren revealed a unique ability of his own.

The manga makes it much clearer that, like a Saiyan, Jiren has the ability to suddenly and exponentially increase his battle power, based on emotional response. For Saiyans it is the famous "Saiyan Pride" in their combat abilities; for Jiren, it is the relentless pursuit of strength as the only true mode of personal power. And yet, even when Jiren's indomitable will proves to be stronger and more enduring than Goku's ability to maintain Ultra Instinct, we learn that Jiren actually has a significant weakness of his own!

Jiren thinks that he has won the battle, after Goku exhausts his abilit to maintain Ultra Instinct, and drops back into his base form. Vegeta volunteers to step in and save Goku, by making the rare decision that the two of them fight Jiren tag-team style (exactly as Whis had planned it). Goku and Vegeta prove to be syched in battle better than anyone could've ever imagined, and Jiren soon finds himself on the ropes. The Universe 11 team watching from the stands is stunned by how powerful Goku and Vegeta are together, which leads their God of Destruction, Belmod, to reveal a secret: Jiren has a big weakness.

As Belmod explains, it was this particular weakness of Jiren's that landed him in the Pride Troopers in the first place:

Belmod: "Jiren's always been a solitary fighter, and it was Gicchin [his master] who had him join the Pride Troopers. Any guesses why?..."

Pride Trooper Kunshi: "Wasn't it... To help Jiren polish his strength?"

Belmod: "Nope. That's not the lesson Gicchin was hopting to teach."

Kunshi: "What was the lesson then...?"

Belmod: "TEAMWORK."

As many Dragon Ball fans have already put together: Jiren is being characterized as much more of a clear foil for Goku in the Dragon Ball Super manga, compared to what we got in the manga. Going into the Tournament of Power, Goku had to learn and accept that his usual approach of challenging the most powerful fighters one-on-one would be a major liability in the ToP: he needed to rely on his teammates, in order to survive the battle royal. Jiren is a fighter who clearly never accepted that same lesson, and is now paying a harsh price, as a result.


MILD SPOILERS: In the Dragon Ball Super anime, the theme of teamwork is the major key to the ToP, as Goku can't beat Jiren by himself, and requires the help of both Freeza and Andorid 17 to finish the fight. After his defeat, Jiren is forced to realize that he should value his Pride Trooper teammates more, marking a big change in his character. The manga version of Jiren seems even more myopic in his thinking, as he let his teammates Toppo and Dyspo get eliminated, claiming he could finish the fight himself. It will be interesting to see how Jiren learns the lesson in this manga storyline.

Dragon Ball Super: Broly will hit Japanese theaters in December, and is expected to arrive in the U.S. on January 16, 2019. Dragon Ball Super is currently airing its English dub on Adult Swim during the Toonami programming block Saturday evenings at 9:30 p.m. ET. It is also available to stream on Funimation and Amazon Video. The Japanese language release of the series is complete and available to stream on Funimation, VRV and Crunchyroll.