Vegeta, Prince of the Saiyans, made his debut early in the Dragon Ball Z anime adaptation of Akira Toriyama's Dragon Ball manga. Short in stature and undeniably evil, Vegeta made a big impact during the Saiyan story arc when he faced off against Goku, another Saiyan and the series' protagonist. Vegeta was forced to retreat from the battle after an embarrassing loss at the hands of Goku's son, Gohan, and his friend, Krillin. After that, Vegeta had to stand by and watch as Goku's powers grew to surpass his in nearly every way.
And although Vegeta's character has arguably gone through more personal development than any other main Dragon Ball character, his ongoing rivalry with Goku has yet to provide a clear answer as to which Saiyan is truly the most powerful. Even in Dragon Ball Super, the contest between Vegeta and Goku remains a central theme and has spread to a bitter ongoing debate among the series' fans about which hero should be the most powerful Saiyan warrior. Should it be the ambitious and uncompromising Vegeta or the noble and self-sacrificing Goku?
There has been some speculation as to why Toriyama seems to mostly favor his lead character, Goku, never allowing Vegeta to hold much of a lead over his counterpart. Toriyama has even stated he doesn't like Vegeta very much. Could that be why Vegeta never surpasses Goku? Or could it be that Vegeta understands his own limitations, whereas Goku is too dumb to quit? Keep reading for more theories about why Vegeta never passes Goku.
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