Dragon Ball Super Episode 112
by Sam Leach,
How would you rate episode 112 of
Dragon Ball Super ?
Last week got us back into the usual mold of slowly making our way through the enormous cast of the Tournament of Power, and now this week sets our sights firmly on Cabba of Universe 6. As powerful as Jiren is, we're reminded that the actual goal of the tournament is to have the most fighters standing when the time limit is up, which gives Universe 7 the most significant lead. Universe 6 isn't too far behind, but with Hit and Cabba out of the fight, they're going to struggle.
The theme this week is all things Saiyans. There's a moment where Cabba is about to fall out of the ring before being caught by Vegeta at the last second, as a way of playing around with who's a friend or foe between Universes 6 and 7 since they're on relatively good terms. If my memory serves me correctly, this is the first time anybody's straight up said they intend to use the Super Dragon Balls to wish the defeated universes back into existence, and that's the promise Vegeta makes to Cabba. All he asks for in return is that Cabba put up a good fight for the sake of Saiyan pride, something that doesn't entirely translate between universes. I'm not sure how I feel about the show being so blatant about the role the Super Dragon Balls play in this arc, since it takes away some of the suspense. Then again, that's how we all kind of assumed this arc had to end, and there's definitely a focus on what all the potential winners might wish for. (Even Jiren seems to have some mysterious wish he wants granted.)
Vegeta and Cabba's relationship isn't so personal that you're going to find yourself invested in the drama, but this episode manages to be enjoyable enough. Cabba is easily the least interesting of the three Universe 6 Saiyans, so giving him an episode to himself means the show is bending over backwards to give him something cool to do (he gets the same convenient Super Saiyan 2 transformation that Caulifla got), but it successfully shifts our attention back to the girls, who look to be the stars of next week's episode.
Frieza being the one to finally take Cabba out is also a pretty good way of blurring the lines between who we're supposed to ultimately root for. He's being a total jerk about Vegeta and Cabba's master/student thing but still fighting on Universe 7's behalf, so he gets to continue being a villain and one of the good guys. They're also really driving home the "Frieza hates Saiyans" thing, so I'm keen to see how that factors into this second half of the arc when Caulifla and Kale become more important.
This is a pretty okay episode overall, but it does a good job tying into the personalities and motivations of the focus characters. Vegeta's been on the sidelines for most of this fight, so giving him some pride-related stakes is good, especially when he's confronted with Toppo who reminds him of his "second fiddle" position behind Goku. That thread seems to be steadily becoming more important, especially after Goku's Ultra Instinct. Vegeta's not as insecure as he used to be, but I'm sure he has his own ideas as to how he's going to come out of this fight a winner.
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