When Cell first appeared in Dragon Ball Z, he sent chills down our spines. At first, we weren't quite sure what we were even looking at, but one thing was certain - it wasn't human. There was something very disturbing about this character, and his anatomy played a huge role in creating that menacing vibe. His large, insectoid form tapped into many of our primal fears of horrible monsters. Cell was definitely a monster, but he also wasn't just a dumb animal. He was genetically engineered to be the perfect fighter - capable of wiping out entire cities in just a few short moments.
Cell was constructed using the DNA of some of he world's greatest fighters, including names like Goku, Frieza, and Vegeta. Even though Saiyan and villainous blood ran through his veins, he seemed to take on a completely unique appearance. When we first saw evidence of his activity in the time machine, most of us thought were were dealing with some type of alien, not someone who could talk and actually make tactical decisions.
If there was one thing about Cell we all could see, it was that there was much more than meets the eye. There was obviously a very interesting and deep story surrounding this powerful villain, and most of us were quite interested to hear all about it. In this article, we've saved you the trouble of doing the research yourself-- let's get into what makes Cell, Cell.
Here are the 20 Weirdest Details About Cell’s Anatomy.
20 Cell Went Through So Many Transformations Because The Editors Thought He Was Ugly
Multiple transformations were nothing new in the Dragon Ball Z series by the time Cell appeared, as we had seen this with plenty of other antagonists in the past. Apparently Cell was never intended to go through so many changes, and Toriyama actually liked him just the way he was at the beginning.
Cell was one of Toriyama's favorite creations, but unfortunately his editor wasn't too thrilled with the way he looked.
Some say that Toriyama's editor thought Cell was too ugly, but Toriyama himself stated that Cell was seen as not "cool" enough. Again, Kanzenshuu quoted Toriyama as he commented on his editor: "There was no pleasing him. (laughs) So next I came up with Cell, but Kondō-san told me to make him look cooler… Kondō-san really liked swish, cool-looking stuff."
19 He Doesn't Have A Gender
Another interesting thing about Cell is that he doesn't actually have a gender. Although Cell appears with a masculine body and a deep voice, there's nothing in his anatomy that would suggest he is either male or female. His entire anatomy is based on that of an insect, and many of his life functions don't really adhere to one specific gender.
Cell seems to be designed to be a life form that transcends gender, and we see many examples of this throughout the series. There's nothing to suggest that he (they?) can actually reproduce with any other life forms. He definitely doesn't need to. Of all the characters we've seen in Dragon Ball Z, Cell is definitely one of the least human.
18 Cell Isn't Actually An Android
Cell is technically one of the Androids, but it doesn't take a genius to figure out that he's nothing like them. Yes, he was created by the same person, but Dr. Gero embarked on a very different journey when he gave birth to Cell. It is generally accepted that most of the Androids are either fully cybernetic or cyborgs with a few implants.
Cell is 100% biological.
The word "Android" doesn't really fit this villain. Instead, Cell is more like a genetically engineered super-weapon. He was grown from an embryo with great care, and his genetic material was carefully constructed. As many fans know, he has DNA from some of the strongest fighters in the universe.
17 Cell Is At Least 50% Saiyan
Speaking of Cell's DNA, it's important to note that a massive portion of his genetic code came directly from Saiyans. At least 50% of his DNA probably comes from Vegeta and Goku, the two strongest fighters in the universe at the time that Dr. Gero was creating Cell. He might also have some of Gohan's cells, although that is debatable.
The bottom line is that this guy is actually 50% Saiyan, which means technically, he's just as much of a Saiyan as Gohan is. As such, we see exhibiting a lot of Saiyan behavior, such as emitting a golden aura with crackling blue electricity. Cell can also seemingly reach the same level as a Super Saiyan.
16 Cell Inherited His Regeneration Powers From Piccolo, But They're Even More Powerful
Some of Cell's most important strands of DNA came directly from Piccolo. Although Piccolo has never really been a particularly strong fighter in Dragon Ball Z, he's definitely had his moments. Without a doubt, Piccolo has some of the most interesting abilities and powers on the show. One of Piccolo's abilities that Cell really benefited from was his power of regeneration. Somehow, Cell's version of Piccolo's regeneration power is much, much more powerful.
It's so strong that Cell can regenerate even when he loses his head.
Going even further, Cell was completely vaporized, and he still managed to bring himself back to life with just a few small cells remaining. Some say that Cell's powers are actually more powerful than those he inherited them from. This is because the abilities have somehow been "perfected" in Cell's genetic code.
15 His Wings Are Completely Pointless
Why does Cell even have wings? That is a question many Dragon Ball Z fans have been asking themselves for quite some time, and nobody's ever come up with an answer. At first glance, it might seem like Cell's wings are designed to help with flight, but it's clear that Cell is able to fly without those wings, much like Goku or Vegeta. In addition, Cell's wings don't ever seem to move or extend, when he's in flight or otherwise.
We can only assume that Cell's wings are completely pointless additions that serve absolutely no purpose. It might be that they are simply leftover genetic traits from Cell's insect-like anatomy. They might be "junk DNA," to some extent.
14 How He Created The Cell Jrs
One of the most surprising things that Cell ever did was produce a herd of Cell Jrs. These little versions of Cell were surprisingly powerful, and they put up quite a fight. They even managed to defeat a few of the best Z Fighters. How did Cell manage to create these life forms? Were they alternate versions of himself, like Piccolo's Multi-Form technique?
Were they actual offspring that Cell "gave birth" to?
As a matter of fact, the latter is true. Cell actually gave birth to these creatures, and it's a form of asexual reproduction. Essentially, he has the means to actually impregnate himself, which isn't a very pleasant thought. As such, the creation of the Cell Jrs didn't take away from Cell's own power level.
13 Cell Is Similar To A Jellyfish (And Why That Makes Him Immortal)
It might not be surprising to learn that Cell is actually immortal. A character with his level of strength has all kinds of hidden powers, and even casual fans would find it easy to believe that this guy has the power to potentially live forever. Not many people actually now why or how Cell can live forever. Cell's immortality is actually rooted in fairly convincing logic and science.
Cell can revert back to his larval state, which completely restarts his life cycle and lets him renew his youth. He did this when he needed to fit inside of the time machine, reverting all the way back to his larval egg form. This is actually very similar to a real sea creature, called Turritopsis dohrnii. This jellyfish is famous for being immortal, and it can revert back to its polyp stage indefinitely, essentially living forever.
12 His Self-Destruction Sequence Was Very Strange
Throughout the series, Cell showed us all that he was capable of many different transformations. Just when we thought we had seen it all, he showed us a brand new form. As Cell grew closer and closer to defeat, he started to get more and more desperate. This culminated in the villain deciding to self destruct, which led to one of his strangest transformations we'd ever seen. Previously, Cell appeared to be quite serious and intimidating throughout his transformations. When he decided to self-destruct, this all went out of the window.
He swelled up like a giant balloon, and eventually he burst, causing massive damage.
Did he really need to swell up like this? What was the point? We've seen other people self-destruct in the series with massive damage, and they didn't have to swell up like a balloon.
11 His Inconsistent Number Of His Fingers
It's a minor thing, but it's also something worth mentioning. Cell's fingers aren't actually consistent throughout both the manga and the anime. True fans probably noticed this, but it might have slipped under the radar for others. It doesn't really impact the story at all, but many fans have pointed it out.
Cell actually had only three fingers on each hand in the original manga. When he appeared in the anime, he suddenly had five fingers on each hand, like a normal human. The three-fingered appearance was probably more in line with Cell's insect-like anatomy, while his five-fingered form was probably an effort to make him seem more streamlined. Either way, it doesn't really affect anything major in the series.
10 His Genetic Memory Survives destruction
One of the most impressive things about Cell's anatomy is the fact that he seems to have some form of genetic memory. This means that he seems to inherently know the techniques of various fighters not due to any training or experience, but because of the information in his DNA. When you actually think about how this works, it's pretty stunning. Such a thing is not possible in the real world - at least not yet. This is even the case when Cell is completely destroyed, and then regenerates from only a few cells.
He seems to have complete memories of what just happened, even though his brain got destroyed in the blast.
There is somehow a link between his genetic code and his brain, and this is a pretty cool fact about his anatomy.
9 What Is Going On With Cell's Head?
Would you call it a crown? We'll call it a crown. No one is really sure what Cell has on his head - not even Cell himself. Some have referred to these protrusions as horns, while others say that it's a headdress of some kind. Whatever the case, it clearly doesn't serve any real function, much like Cell's wings. Was it just put there to make him look cool? Probably.
We've seen this "crown" get quite damaged over the course of the series, with Gohan succeeding in breaking the "horns" completely at one point, so they can't be very essential to his health. Some fans have even suggested that the structure is actually the result of Cell's Namekian DNA, and that some Namekians have the same thing on their heads.
8 How Does Cell "Spit Out" A Fully-Formed Android 18?
Things really start going downhill for Cell when he fights a thoroughly enraged Gohan. The son of Goku hits Cell so hard that he literally regurgitates Android 18. This proves to be a crucial strike, because once Android 18 has left his body, he is no longer "perfect." However, there's definitely a lot about this whole scene that makes no sense. How is it that Android 18 is spat out while fully formed? When Cell absorbed the female android, most people assumed that she was digested or deconstructed in some way while inside Cell's body.
Surely for Cell to gain her power, Android 18 must have deteriorated in some way, right?
How did she even fit inside of him for all this time? The entire scene is a little confusing.
7 Cell Gets More Powerful After Blowing Himself Up
One of the biggest plot twists in the entire series is when Cell actually reforms after blowing himself up, much to the shock of the Z Fighters. Even more surprising is the fact that Cell is somehow even more powerful than ever before. You would think that the explosion and the stress of having to rebuild himself would damage Cell. At the very least, he should be tired, right?
In reality, Cell gets more powerful after the explosion because he was able to absorb Goku's cells in the midst of the blast. This means that he had new access to an even more powerful version of Goku - one that his original cells didn't contain. This transformation was Super Saiyan Two, a very powerful form.
6 He Fuses With Frieza In The Video Games
Cell and Frieza are two of the best villains Dragon Ball Z has ever seen, and it's almost a shame they never got to meet in the main series. Although Cell meets his end quite early on in the series, he has been known to reappear from time to time. In the video games, not only did these two meet, they even formed a fusion.
This fusion was known as "Celluza."
Obviously, a fusion such as this would be extremely strong, but also very evil. Who knows if Celluza will ever appear in the main series. If he does, then the main characters better watch out. This fusion might just be one of the strongest out there.
5 Cell's Quest For World Domination Might Be Because Of His DNA From Piccolo
We all know that Cell has DNA from quite a few great fighters, including some of the strongest villains. What makes him so evil? After all, Cell also has DNA from an equal amount of good characters, such as Goku, Vegeta, and Piccolo (although the last two are debatable). Really, Cell is just as likely to be a good guy, or at least an anti-hero, based only on his DNA.
According to scattered reports, Cell's main driving force is actually the result of DNA from King Piccolo. Fans will remember that this was the original Piccolo, before he was split into both Kami and Piccolo. Back in the day, King Piccolo had dreams of world domination. Apparently, that's exactly where Cell gets his world view from.
4 The Black Diamond On His Chest Never Changes
Another interesting fact about Cell has to do with a small feature that most people miss. Cell goes through some pretty drastic transformations, but there's always one thing that remains the same. No matter how he transforms, Cell always has a black diamond on his chest, and this never goes away. Many people have pointed out that this is similar to certain structures on Frieza's body, which remained no matter how much he transformed.
Is this a weak spot? We don't really know, but it's safe to assume that this black diamond represents some sort of "core."
Perhaps it contains things like vital organs. We'll never truly know, but it's another one of those strange features of Cell's anatomy that we just can't explain.
3 Cell's failure with Super Saiyan Third Grade
Seeing Cell finally fall to a Super Saiyan Gohan was very satisfying. Previously, Cell had been nothing but confident and seemingly indestructible. As Gohan really started to dominate him, Cell knew he had to try something extreme. The tactics he chose made no sense.
He chose to take on a form similar to Super Saiyan Third Grade, otherwise known as Super Saiyan 1.5 This is the same form that Trunks uses to try and defeat Cell earlier. The problem with this form is that it's just too bulky to move fast. Power is increased, but speed and agility is sacrificed. Even though Cell personally witnessed the disadvantages of such a form, he still chose to try it against Gohan. Needless to say, he didn't succeed.
2 Cell And The Entire Android Saga Were Inspired By The Terminator Franchise
Even though Cell doesn't share a lot in common with any of the characters from the Terminator franchise, it's nonetheless true that he was inspired by the movies. In fact, the entire Android story line, along with all of its characters, was inspired by these classic '80s movies. Some would actually say that Cell has a lot in common with the Terminator that appears in Judgement Day.
The T-1000 is able to regenerate from literally all forms of damage, due to its liquid metal composure.
Similarly, Cell also has a similar regenerative ability, although he's obviously much different in many other ways. He actually travels in time, just like the various Terminators, and has his own personal mission for traveling to the past.
1 Toriyama Found It Tiring To Draw All The Little Spots On Cell's Body
Cell was definitely one of the most interesting characters to look at, and it was obvious that a lot of thought had gone into his design. One thing that perhaps wasn't fully thought out was how hard it was to draw Cell! Toriyama himself revealed that drawing Cell was pretty difficult, particularly because of all the spots on his body.
As quoted by Kanzenshuu, Toriyama revealed: "I’m in the habit of giving characters progressively more complex and tough-looking forms, then finally making them really sleek. After all, it’s awful drawing them once they get all complex... Complex guys are terrible when you have to draw them for weeks on end… Cell was a ton of work, with those darn spots of his."
What other strange details make up Cell's body in Dragon Ball? Let us know in the comments!