Is Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Actually A Cell Saga Sequel?

Is the next Dragon Ball Super Movie - Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero  - actually a sequel to Dragon Ball Z's infamous Cell Saga? It's a fair question to be asking after the debut of the Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero trailer at NYCC 2021. That first clip of footage (and the panel of creative team and cast that came to promote) hinted at key staples of the Dragon Ball franchise all coming to together in this new and unique tale. The new fighters that Super Hero will introduce - Gamma 1 and Gamma 2 - already have the look and feel of what could be the next generation of Cell androids! 

The trailer and new details of Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero reveal that classic Dragon Ball villains the Red Ribbon Army is at the center of this story. It's also made clear that Gamma 1 and 2 are actually agents of the Red Ribbon Army. The sizzle reel of footage seemed to suggest that the Red Ribbon Army has also been keeping tabs on powerful fighters of Earth like Goku, Vegeta, and Buu - in fact, it almost looks like a catalogue of top powers that could be collected. 

The brief scenes of Gamma in battle make it seem plausible that the being could go out hunting down various Z-Fighters. It all looks new in the animation style Toei is going with for this film, but that visual polish doesn't disguise the fact that this story feels very familiar... 

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero seems like it could be an official sequel to the events of the Cell Saga - something that fans have long wanted, and that Dragon Ball has explored in non-canon ventures like the Dragon Ball FighterZ video game. 

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The theory is that the Red Ribbon Army still has access to Dr. Gero's work, and it's that legacy that spawns Gamma 1 and Gamma 2. Those beings would theoretically be more advanced and powerful than Imperfect Cell ever was - and even more adept at taking down Goku, Vegeta, and co. at their current Dragon Ball Super power levels. The title "Super Hero" adds a possible new twist: instead of the Red Ribbon Army unleashing a killer android to cause havoc, what if the modern RRA chooses to use its power-consuming android for a better PR stunt?

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Stealing the powers of top fighters to make their own "super hero" would be a new kind of scheme - but one that's totally reflective of modern times and the concerns about truth, and the false images of heroes that conceal darker realities of who they are. That new twist on a Cell-like villain would be a perfect sequel story for Gohan in particular, and his "Great Saiyaman" hero persona. We already know that Gohan and his family will indeed by central figures in Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero; it would make sense that the superhero Saiyan would have to step up, if Goku, Vegeta, and the older crowd all get absorbed. 

Dragon Ball Super: Super Heroes will be released in theaters in 2022.