Dragon Ball Super Expert Explains Cell's Real-World Origins

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The official Dragon Ball website is a great source to get updates about Akira Toriyama's popular shonen franchise, but it also features interesting interviews, with the latest featuring two scientists, who are also Dragon Ball fans, to share something insightful about the series.

Researcher Yudai Okuyama and science teacher Masayuki Kato took the opportunity to dive into various topics relating to Namekians and Frieza's alien race, while also talking about the real-life organism that has similar characteristics as Cell, the villainous creation of Dr. Gero and the Red Ribbon Army.

Dragon Ball Z Cell
Credit: Shueisha/Toei Animation
Dragon Ball Z Cell
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Back in Dragon Ball Z's saga focusing on the villain, Cell was hoping to achieve his ultimate form by absorbing other androids, managing to absorb both Androids 17 and 18.

Okuyama explained how the Kleptoplasts are similar to Cell, as they are able to absorb other organisms. He also mentioned the species of luminescent fish that can acquire the ability to emit light from a protein in their diet.

"No, it's actually quite interesting. The chloroplasts in the sea slugs have a more aggressive origin—they're called 'kleptoplasts,' and they're a rare kind of organism that steals chloroplasts from other organisms. They're kind of like Cell, don't you think? There are other lifeforms that absorb the abilities of other organisms and make them their own too. For example, there's a species of luminescent fish called Parapriacanthus ransonneti, but they actually get the ability to emit light from a protein in their diet of sea fireflies, or Vargula hilgendorfii. They don't digest it, so it just gets absorbed into their bodies.

Perhaps his creator, Dr. Gero, took inspiration from this kind of natural phenomenon when designing Cell with his ability to absorb people and steal their power."

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Related: Did Dragon Ball Super Make a Major Error in The Latest Manga Chapter?

Currently, the manga doesn't have any plans to bring back the iconic villain, but Gohan, the Saiyan who ultimately defeated him, will return in action in Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero, and that he, Piccolo and other Z Fighters will take on the Red Ribbon Army's powerful new androids