Episode 104, "A Troubling Premonition… The Appearance of a Mysterious Warrior!!"
Synopsis: Mr. Satan realizes he will be humiliated if he fights Trunks in the exhibition match awarded to the Junior Division Champion. He attempts to fake an injury, then decides instead to make it look like he's lost on purpose to look like a good sport. He invites Trunks to give him a playful "tap" to start the match, which sends Mr. Satan flying into a brick wall. However, the World Champion recovers and laughs it off, playing it up for the crowd, even though he's genuinely in pain. The act goes over well and the crowd is convinced. The fighters eligible for the regular division gather, and Kuririn is concerned that there aren't any worth opponents outside his group of friends. However, there are a few interesting characters in the mix, including two mysterious men clearly not from Earth, two pale men with strange marks on their heads, and a disguised Goten and Trunks, playing a fighter they knocked out so they can compete with the adults. Drawing numbers for the matches, it's decided that Goku will fight Vegeta in the first round.
You have to appreciate what a brilliant fraud Mr. Satan is in this episode. He knows that he is absolutely screwed when it comes to the exhibition match with Trunks. Mr. Satan might be strong compared to most ordinary humans, but against somebody like Trunks, he hasn't a prayer, so he's in a real bind. If he gets humiliated in public, he'll be a laughing stock and lose all the glory and praise he lives off of. So, he thinks fast and does something very clever and sneaky, just pretending to lose the match to placate a child. Of course, he really does get pretty roughly punched, even with Trunks' playfulness (one wonders if Trunks was even trying to hold back that much), but doesn't seem too badly injured (he's not bleeding badly or anything). I guess it's just the perks of being a gag character. He was able to survive getting whacked aside by Cell, after all.
Trunks, meanwhile is a shameless little devil, isn't he? I don't what's worse than he just ruthlessly knocks the shit out of some poor guy who qualified for the adult division and took his place, or that he pulled Goten into his scheme, as well. The most bizarre thing is that, for the time being, it works entirely. The pair manage to fool everybody even though anyone who has two brain cells to rub together should see clearly that it's two children, or at least one on stilts. Then again, with the kind of weird animal people and monsters that inhabit the Dragon Ball world, a healthy dose of cognitive dissonance is necessary.
As to be expected, Goten is the bottom. I have no further comments regarding this.
We also see the debut of Kaioshin and Kibito, who appear with a mysterious aura about them, with Kaioshin already levitating and having this really odd manner about him he loses entirely later on for some reason. He just seems so weird and off-putting at first, with a strange, almost smug look to him. It also seems like he's going to be some kind of new rival. But with what anyone knows about the character from watching the original incarnation of this show, or reading the manga, that contradicts his later characterization. It's obvious that Toriyama was just kind of making this up as he went along (though that's pretty standard procedure for him). There's really no need for him to be so secretive and enigmatic, given what he's on Earth for.
There's a couple of pretty funny moments in this episode. The first is when Piccolo is conferring with Goku about the alien...ness of Kaioshin and Kibito, and Videl overhears. Gohan makes the excuse that Piccolo is "a bit weird", which, again, isn't entirely necessary. Clearly she knows about flying, ki use, and Goku really being dead at this point. He may as well just tell her that aliens have come to Earth plenty of times. I mean, after all, the Vegeta and Nappa quite publicly landed years earlier, and surely some people remember that. The second moment I find amusing is when Kuririn begins to pray to God (Kami-sama) to not be pitted against any of his much more powerful friends in the first round. Piccolo makes the observation that, at this point, Dende is Kami. Maybe Kuririn should pray to Kaio.
The editing in this episode is a lot tighter and better handled, with no botched transitions. The voice acting is topnotch, as to be expected. But what really surprised me is that we got a couple of new pieces of music, so it wasn't just the same old bland tracks, and they were both a lot better than most of what we've heard so far. The first played during Kaioshin's debut and the second after Vegeta picked the lot that put him in a match with Goku in the first round. Though I would really appreciate it if the music wasn't wall-to-wall with so little silence.
4 out of 5