No, that wasn’t a typo.
You might have clicked on this article laced with skepticism, anxious for some sort of rational explanation for such jest. But I do not jest, you see, for today we are discussing a very serious subject, and a very serious man. His name is Krillin – and in a universe filled with super powered demigods, he is the best of them all.
Shout at your computer screen all you like! Deride if you must. But sit down for a moment and allow me to spin some sweet poetry upon you, to lift the veil from your eyes and show you the pure, beautiful, bald truth. Krillin is top of the pops, and you’d best get on this bandwagon now, son.
Pull out your scouters, because we’re going over 9,000 here.
He’s (probably) the strongest human
We’ll get the obvious one out of the way first, and don’t worry, I’ve got a whole lot more to work with than just this. In the universe of Dragon Ball, being dubbed the strongest human can be something of a backhanded compliment. Compared to planet destroying Saiyans, tyrannical alien overlords that wipe out communities with a flick of the wrist, and a pink blob monster that eats people because sure why not, humans are at a marked disadvantage. More often than not, they get a participation ribbon planted grandly upon their decimated corpses.
But considering the franchise is set largely on the planet Earth, humans feature fairly predominantly. The true ranking of humans is a little cloudy over the series’ history; Some are adamant that Tien is the strongest in the series, and in the early stages, that much definitely seems true. Others point towards Uub, the literal reincarnation of Kid Buu. But Krillin seems to make greater gains in strength through less actual training than his peers. Tien occasionally turns up after Ryu-like sabbaticals in search of ultimate power, and Krillin, drink in hand, just kinda looks at him and says ‘ah yeah, cool story.’
Not convinced? Try this, then. Tien is actually a Triclops and therefore disqualified from contention, while there are some in the DB community that don’t even consider Uub canon in the first place. Therefore, Krillin wins by default. Default! Default! Default!
He dies a lot
Often considered one of his most defining features, Krillin has a tendency to die rather frequently. Some might point to this being a weakness, but put yourself in his shoes for a minute. Let’s say you were fighting someone evil, and – oh no! – you died. We’re not talking grievous injuries or permanent scarring here. You flat out ceased to live.
Through the magical use of some mystical balls, you are brought back to vivification. The world seems different now; the sky is a little bit bluer and flowers smell a whole lot more fragrant. That bucket list you’d been putting off? Its importance has never been more apparent. You thought you could delay learning Spanish and training yourself to run a half-marathon, but now you realise your own mortality.
You know what you’re most certainly not going to do, though? Sign back up for more death – that much I guarantee. Particularly if you’re someone like Krillin, who isn’t exactly a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield, and odds are, you’re probably going to meet your maker once again. Krillin dies approximately five times throughout the franchise’s history, and by the time you’ve finished reading this article, he’s probably died again.
But he gets right back on that horse, our man Krillin. By all standards, he earned the right to retire two or three deaths ago, but that doesn’t stop him, no sir!
The Destructo Disk is awesome
This one doesn’t need much explaining – even staunch Krillin detractors tend to admit that the Destructo Disk is amongst the coolest techniques introduced in DB lore. Literally a shining blade of pure ouch, Krillin’s signature technique has the potential to carve through mountains with ease.
Alas, its history of success is a little bit spotty, and its peak moments have ranged from grazing Nappa on the cheek to removing Frieza’s tail (though in fairness, Frieza seemed to really love that tail). We rarely see it make direct contact with its target, but I refer to the wrestling belief that finishers should be protected. If it fails to decapitate foes left, right and centre, nobody would respect it. Instead, by implying that each botched shot was a ‘near miss that could have been catastrophic’, we’re led to believe that being nailed point blank by a Destructo Disk means game over. Personally, I think Krillin could have casually flung a couple of these bad boys from the sidelines during the one-on-one fights, but maybe that’s just me.
And let’s not forget, people obviously thought pretty highly of the technique, as it’s been pinched by all kinds of warriors over the years. Frieza, Android 18, Cell, even that glory hog Goku himself sees fit to chuck a Disk every now and then. Despite all this, nobody ever thanks Krillin for such a splendid technique, the ingrates.
Beautiful women dig him
Few can ignore Krillin’s vaunted abilities of seduction. The famous phrase may state that someone ‘is a lover, not a fighter’, but in Krillin’s case, both are true. He just happens to be a lot better at the former.
Obviously, his charms were enough to woo Android 18, the kind of woman who would break your face if you ever ticked her off. Lazuli kicks all kind of butt (did you know that was her name? I didn’t. I always assumed it was something less exotic, like Samantha or Beatrice), and is amongst the strongest non-Saiyan characters in all of DB lore.
Clearly, she suffers no fools. And yet Krillin still has the gall to name their daughter Marron… the same name as one of his ex-girlfriends. I have no idea how he swung that one, but fortunately for him, Lazuli never cottoned on. If she ever did, I suspect death #6 wouldn’t be far off…
He almost killed Vegeta
Considering Krillin’s best victory is probably the fact that he offed a few Saibamen, adding Vegeta to his list of conquests certainly would have given him some serious street cred. He’s only stopped short when Goku convinces him to spare Vegeta’s life, allowing the treacherous Saiyan to blast off to safety.
Obviously, the decision pans out – Vegeta eventually reforms to become a crucial ally of the Z Warriors, so long as he isn’t swayed for petty reasons *cough* Majin Vegeta *cough*. But let’s look at this on the micro level: here’s a dude whose actions led to the death of four of your buddies right before your very eyes. You’ve just spent the last few hours fighting him with all your might, in order to save the very planet you’re standing on. At long last, you have the chance to deal the final blow and put an end to all of the turmoil, there and then.
…Then your friend says ‘but wait, let him go, it might be fun.’
Krillin obeys because he’s a bro, but I’d have iced that Saiyan punk on the spot. It’s up to you whether I’m referring to Vegeta or Goku, by the way.
He killed Cell
That’s right, our boy Krillin straight up murdered the mighty villain Cell, and that sucker didn’t even land a single hit.
When the Z Warriors learn of the impending doom that awaits them in the form of Dr. Gero’s creations, Krillin nobly offers to infiltrate the laboratory holding the gooey larva form of modern-day Cell, despite not knowing what kind of dangerous perils awaited him. With little more than some purple-haired dweeb at his side, Krillin laid waste to that house of horrors, preventing the planet’s destruction once again.
So raise your glasses to the king. He may be short, he may be follicly challenged, and he may be dead (I haven’t checked on him for about fifteen minutes and I’m worried), but don’t let any of these notions blind you from the one simple truth.
Krillin is the best. Everyone else is just playing for second place.
Are you still Krillin time?
Check out this analysis on how strong Krillin might become in Dragon Ball Super, should he reach his maximum potential (fingers crossed!!)
And don’t forget to take a look at this ranking of the Z Fighters’ strength going into the Multi-Universe Tournament! An unfortunate typo led to Krillin being criminally underestimated, but we hope you’ll enjoy, regardless.