Yamcha Is Dragon Ball's Most Underestimated Character

The Dragon Ball franchise is full of colorful characters who are both incredibly powerful and loved by fans, but somehow Yamcha never gets the respect he deserves. Heroes like Goku, Vegeta, Gohan, or even Krillin get lots of love, but Yamcha is often diminished or left behind. Despite his importance to the anime, Yamcha is often mocked for being considerably weaker than most of the main characters.

Yamcha was a key ally of Goku in the franchise's first anime series, Dragon Ball. In Dragon Ball Z, Goku and his friends grew in power as the series wore on, and as this continued, the gap between several of the Z-fighters and Yamcha widened extensively. Heroes like Yamcha, Tien, and Chiaotzu became less relevant to the main story, and more emphasis was placed on other supporting characters such as Goten, Trunks, Buu, and more. Yamcha's limited presence in the later seasons of Dragon Ball Z is similar to how he's utilized in the latest series in the franchise, Dragon Ball Super.

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Despite his lack of importance in some of Dragon Ball's biggest storylines, Yamcha appears as a playable character in nearly every Dragon Ball video game and has maintained a certain degree of popularity with fans. Regardless, this hasn't stopped Yamcha from being the butt of all jokes in the Dragon Ball community. The fact that Yamcha was killed by a Saibaman in the Saiyan Saga has made Yamcha a subject of ridicule and an embarrassing number of memes, and Dragon Ball Super certainly hasn't helped his case.

In the episode, "Champa's Challenge! This Time We Fight With Baseball!" Yamcha is the hero of the story when Beerus puts together a team of warriors to play baseball with Champa's team. When he proves his worth and combines his martial arts training with his baseball skills to outsmart and defeat his team's opponents, everyone is shocked. Even when the characters pay Yamcha a compliment, Dragon Ball Super still finds a way to poke fun at him. Android 18 notes her surprise by remarking that she wasn't aware that Yamcha was good at anything, and Beerus claims that Yamcha is less "worthless" than he originally thought.

While it is true that Yamcha isn't as strong as most of the characters, he's still one of the two most powerful humans in the entire anime, the other being Krillin. This is a feat that Yamcha doesn't receive much recognition for. Just the fact that Yamcha was to able to gain a win over Champa, a God of Destruction, in any form is an impressive accomplishment.

Another sign that Yamcha is more powerful than fans - and his fellow warriors - give him credit for is a brief moment that took place in a filler episode of Dragon Ball Z. While in Otherworld, Yamcha takes up fighting again and easily defeats a minor character named Olibu. What's noteworthy about this is that Olibu is the greatest fighter in his quadrant of Universe 7 and is on par with Cell, one of Dragon Ball Z's strongest villains. This victory elevates Yamcha to a much higher level of power than what would normally be expected of him.

Perhaps if Goku had kept these things in mind, he wouldn't have forgotten Yamcha when picking fighters for the Tournament of Power. Yamcha, who desperately wanted to join in the fight, was disappointed when he was overlooked by Goku. His absence from the biggest tournament in Dragon Ball history is another unfortunate slight to one of Goku's oldest allies and the franchise's most underestimated (and disrespected) hero.

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