Dragon Ball Super Episode 68 has just aired, and it was a definitely a refreshing, light-hearted filler after the bleak atmosphere which pervaded the recently concluded Future Trunks arc. Apart from good, old-fashioned Dragon Ball humor, the episode also seemed to drop a number of important, albeit brief, clues about Gohan’s return to being a powerful fighter. As the anime prepares for its next big arc, however, a few more fillers would be aired, as teased in the Episode 69 preview. The brief teaser showed, among others, Super Saiyan Blue Goku appearing to fight Arale, who is possibly one of Akira Toriyama’s most overpowered characters to date.
Episode 68 played as expected by fans of the anime. It was a light episode with little plot progression and lots of humor. Considering that the last 20 episodes covered some of the darkest themes ever explored by the franchise, however, it was completely understandable for the producers of the anime to make Episodes 68 to 70 as light-hearted as possible. Overall, Dragon Ball Super Episode 68 was a lot of fun, as Son Goku attempted to bring back Kaio-Sama using the Dragon Balls, only to have his wishes thwarted by his friends and family.
Despite the little progression in terms of Dragon Ball Super‘s overall plot, Episode 68 did provide fans with a very interesting clue about Gohan’s role in the upcoming arc. During Future Trunks’ farewell in Episode 67, DBS appeared to tease fans with a Gohan comeback, as Goku’s first-born son was shown with a more aggressive appearance akin to his Mystic form back in Dragon Ball Z. Apart from this, Future Trunks also saw a splitting image of his powerful master while saying goodbye to the now-domesticated Saiyan.
So it's apparently been less than a year since the start of the Champa arc. I guess. pic.twitter.com/aGgTa5YrUG— Todd Blankenship (@Herms98) November 27, 2016
Dragon Ball Super Episode 68, “Come here Shenron!! Whose Dream Will Come True?”, appeared to tease fans further, as Gohan attempted to have his daughter, Pan, healed by Shenron, the wish-granting dragon of the DB universe. As Pilaf was about to give the mystical dragon his wish, Gohan unknowingly smashes him out of the way. This particular scene attracted the attention of avid Dragon Ball fans since it seemed to foreshadow that Gohan, who was severely weakened in DBS, is gaining back his strength.
Accidental displays of strength have always been utilized in the Dragon Ball franchise as a humorous plot device in the past, with fighters inadvertently displaying more power than they intended to simply because they were too strong. Considering that Gohan was able to rush towards the wish-granting dragon without any problem while effectively smashing through Pilaf like the character was just an empty can of soda, it appeared like Goku’s first-born son has once more reached the point where he is unaware of his own strength.
The next big Dragon Ball Super arc, while unconfirmed, is widely speculated to feature the Omniverse Tournament. This was teased ever since Zeno, the Omni-King, was first introduced in the anime. The upcoming tournament is rumored to feature the best fighters from the Dragon Ball multiverse. With all the Gohan tease that DBS has been dropping, it appears that fans of the character would probably not have to wait very long to see Goku’s first-born son become great again.
Dragon Ball Super Episode 69, “Goku vs. Arale! Earth Ends in a Wacky Battle?!”, would be yet another filler. Unlike Episode 68, however, next week’s episode would feature a cameo from DB creator Akira Toriyama’s earliest works, the cute, overpowered robot girl Arale. Arale was one of Toriyama’s earliest creations, and she headlined Toriyama’s Dr. Slump manga in the past. The cute, little character was even featured in a few episodes during the original run of the very first Dragon Ball anime in the 1980s. During Arale’s encounter with the young Goku, the Saiyan was quick to notice that the little robot girl was far more powerful than he was. Thus, with her background, it appears like Arale’s return in Episode 69 would be one extremely enjoyable ride.
The scenes of Episode 69’s preview, which were notably narrated by Arale’s voice actress, contained a number of humorous scenes, including Vegeta, who was wearing a suit, punching Arale to the sky. The teaser also showed a decapitated Arale standing up and freaking out both Goku and Vegeta. Most notably, the Dragon Ball Super Episode 69 teaser also showed Super Saiyan Blue Goku charging up for an attack. With these scenes in mind, it appears like Arale is still as overpowered as ever, filling next week’s episode with a lot of laughs and nostalgic nods to Akira Toriyama’s classic works.
While plot-wise very little happened in Dragon Ball Super Episode 68, it was exactly the type of episode that fans of the anime needed. After the foreboding atmosphere of the Future Trunks saga, fans needed a break before the anime’s next serious arc would begin. From what could be determined from this week’s episode and Episode 69’s preview, it almost appears like Dragon Ball Super is giving fans as much breathing room as possible before starting its most epic, possibly final saga. The Omniverse Tournament would no doubt feature some of the most intense and high-stakes battles in the DB franchise. Thus, fans of the anime would be wise to enjoy the little fillers the anime is currently exploring since it appears like once the non-canonical episodes are done, Dragon Ball Super would take fans on a massive, breathtaking ride.
[Featured Image by Toei Animation]