With the conclusion of the Granolah Arc in the latest chapter of Dragon Ball Super, fans are asking if fan-favorite villain Frieza is the new black.
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Across the last few chapters, things were starting to look bleak for Goku and Vegeta as the Heeter family bruiser, Gas, was proving to be too much for the Saiyan pair to beat in combat – even with their Ultra Instinct and Ultra Ego forms.
Unfortunately for the two, in DBS Chapter 87, things took a turn for the worse when Gas’ wish upon the Cerelean Dragon Balls’ reached the apex of its potential, leaving the villain sapped of nearly all his life energy in exchange for making him the strongest being in the universe.
That was, until none other than Lord Frieza himself showed up for the party, summoned by Elec in the hopes that Gas would eliminate the conqueror once and for all.
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Taking care of business, Frieza then proceeds to kill the supposed ‘strongest warrior in the universe’ with a single blow.
After the dust settles, a shocked Goku and Vegeta press the space emperor on how he was able to beat Gas so easily, as Vegeta points out, “Gas had become the strongest warrior in the universe. By all rights he should’ve been stronger than you.”
To this, Frieza explains that, as with just about any binding agreement in life, whether it be contracts, laws, or in this case wishes, that there was a particular loophole to the wish granted to Gas by the Cerelean Dragon Balls – one which he discovered by way of a happy accident.
“In THIS universe you mean?” Freeza smugly clarifies. “Ahh of course. I’ve been spending time in another dimension, you see. So perhaps I wasn’t being counted as part of this universe.”
As Frieza recalls, he has been spending recent months on one of the many worlds he conquered inside of a strange chamber he discovered where time flows differently inside of it than in the outside world – in other words, a Room of Spirit and Time.
Of course, this is not the first Room of Spirit and Time seen in the Dragon Ball series, let alone Dragon Ball Super.
Aside from the one seen in Z located at Kami’s Lookout, another Room of Spirit and Time is introduced back in Super‘s 52nd chapter.
In order to help him prepare for his rematch against Moro, as seen in the Galactic Patrol Prisoner Arc, Merus brings Goku to one such room located inside of a giant pyramid.
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The time dilation rates vary between chambers. In the one on Kami’s Lookout, one year passes inside the chamber for each day that passes outside, while the one used by Merus sees time pass at a rate of three-days-to-one.
While Frieza does not speak to the time equivalency of his Room, nor whether it has the same two-hour time limit imposed by previous Rooms (a detail that will hopefully receive clarification in a future chapter), he does reveal that he underwent ten years worth of training during his time using the other-dimensional gateway.
It is thanks to this extensive training time, the realization that he “needed a bit of a power-up” in order to keep up with the Saiyans’ own abilities, and “plenty of toil”, that Frieza was able to achieve his new transformation: Black Frieza.
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So, why Black Frieza? While neither Toriyama nor Toyotaro have yet provided any behind-the-scenes insights into the form’s creation, an educated guess suggests it was chosen to fit with the ‘energy’-based naming theme that Toriyama has chosen for the villainous Heeter family, whose members include Elec, Oil, Gas, and Maki (Japanese for ‘firewood’).
With his previous form being Gold Frieza, a real-world nickname for oil being ‘Black Gold’, and the status of the liquid as the ‘king’ of all energy sources, it seems the villain could have received his new dark-colored form as a nod to his status as the universe’s greatest villain – a very fitting choice for the space emperor.
Of course, there’s also the possibility that his new black color scheme was chosen as a thematic inversion of the white-colored energy of Goku’s Ultra Instinct form.
After all, as is reinforced in this chapter, the only thing concerning Frieza more than the rebuilidng of his empire is his besting of the last remaining Saiyans – and the legendary Super Saiyan in particular.
With Chapter 87 of the Dragon Ball Super manga being the official conclusion to the Granolah Arc, Toyotarou and Toriyama will take the next month off in order to prepare for the next arc of Dragon Ball Super.
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