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  Daizenshuu EX - Guides - Transformations Guide - Cell  

Cell's transformations are different from those of, say, Freeza's or the Saiyans'. In order to transform into his second and third (kanzentai, or "perfect") forms, he has to absorb two specific individuals (those being Jinzôningen #17 and #18). Cell absorbs people through his tail, the end of which can expand to fully surround and take in an entire person (as seen in the image at the right; 2nd-Form Cell preparing to absorb #18). It is possible for Cell to absorb others, but they do not result in physical changes.


Cell's original, baby form floats in Dr. Gero's basement laboratory. In our present timeline, this "Baby Cell" is killed by Trunks and Kuririn when they discover the basement (which included some jinzôningen blueprints). In the future timeline, however, it grows to full-size, cracks out of the machine, kills Trunks (therefore stealing his time machine), and travels back to our present timeline in order to absorb Jinzôningen #17 & #18.

DBZ Episode 145; Manga Chapter 365
Baby Cell just sits in the tank, totally unaware of his surroundings, and the fact that he's about to be killed...

Shown here in the middle of returning to his original larva form, Cell grew from the above "baby" form into a larva form, which also included a giant husk (which Gohan, Bulma, and Trunks discovered out in the woods). The larva would break out of this husk, which would result in Cell's first actual form (which was very lizard-like). In the future timeline, Cell kills Trunks and steals his time machine. Cell, in his first form, cannot fit into the time machine, however, and is forced to degenerate into his larva form. This larva form somewhat creates a purple egg (which Gohan and the others also find); when Cell arrives in the timeline, he bursts from this egg, encased in the husk as larva. The larva breaks out of the husk, leaving it empty in the woods near the time machine. This husk was the first thing discovered, and the first indication that something evil was on its way... and may have even been here for years! In our timeline, once Cell breaks from the husk, he never returns. It is only in the future timeline that the degeneration occurs.

DBZ Episode 140; Manga Chapter 358-359
From the egg hatches a larva form of Cell, which leaves behind a husk before transforming into the true first stage.
FIRST FORM ("seru" / "CELL")

Cell first appears to us, already in first-form, absorbing every human he comes across in Ginger Town. Unlike his larva form, he now fully walks upright on two legs. His facial features have not yet fully developed, and still retains a "beak"-like mouth, rather than traditional human-like features seen in later forms. The two sections of his head shoot off in different directions, rather than nearly straight up as in the next two forms.

While in this form, Cell attains greater power by absorbing all of the people he comes across, regardless of their strength. Rather than fully absorbing people, though, he seems to suck the life out of them by stabbing them with the pointed end of his tail, which literally drains the victim of their body mass.

This Cell is from a future timeline where he has killed Trunks and stolen the time machine. He has returned to the past (our present timeline) in order to fully absorb Jinzôningen #17 and #18. By absorbing each of these, Cell will reach another stage (one at a time), ultimately resulting in his kanzentai ("perfect") stage. Until then, Cell absorbs all humans he comes across.

Note that, in the original Japanese version, Cell's voice does not change from form to form.

DBZ Episode 141; Manga Chapter 361
Cell's first stage is very lizard-like in nature, without many fully-formed facial features. Cell will need to absorb Jinzôningen #17 and #18 in order to reach the next two stages.
SECOND FORM ("dai 2 [ ni ] keitai")

After absorbing Jinzôningen #17 (and a great deal of innocent humans), Cell reaches his second stage. In this stage, Cell's facial features begin to resemble a human's more and more.

While the nose is not yet fully formed (as it will be in the next stage), he now has an actual mouth. The two off-shooting sections of his head now go straight into the air, as well.

In this stage, Cell's power has increased exponentially, but he is still no match for the newly powered-up Super Saiyans. His rear end is handed to him by "Super Vegeta," who ultimately makes the mistake of letting his pride control him; Vegeta allows Cell to absorb Jinzôningen #18, thus completing himself and achieving his kanzentai ("perfect") form.

Note that, in the original Japanese version, Cell's voice does not change from form to form.

DBZ Episode 152; Manga Chapter 372
After having absorbed Jinzôningen #17, Cell takes on more humanoid facial features, and drastically increases in power and speed. He is still not yet a match for the fully-powered Super Saiyans, though...

When Vegeta allows Cell to absorb Jinzôningen #18, his absorption process is complete, resulting in the "perfect" form. Cell is an organic being in every way, now (or so he explains), complete with fully-formed nose and mouth.

Cell's power, in this form, is greater than that of even the Super Saiyans (Goku, Vegeta, Trunks). Vegeta and Trunks, even in their advanced Super Saiyan forms, are unable to so much as scratch him. Goku declares his first loss against Cell during the "Cell Games," leaving only Gohan to challenge the monster. Gohan undergoes a new transformation (into Super Saiyan 2, thanks to a great deal of Cell's physical and mental abuse, pushing Gohan over the edge) to battle Cell, ultimately defeating him.

Note that, in the original Japanese version, Cell's voice does not change from form to form. Also, the fourth daizenshuu writes "DEVELOPED FORM" under "kanzentai," but this is not quite as accurate a translation as "perfect form."

DBZ Episode 159; Manga Chapter 382
After having absorbed Jinzôningen #17 and #18, Cell has reached his "perfect" form. His power is far greater than any Super Saiyan's, and he has taken on the facial and body features of most regular characters.

As noted over on the Saiyan transformations page, there are many times that (once he becomes "perfect"), Cell "powers up" with the same golden aura typically attributed to characters that are in Super Saiyan. Technically, Cell does indeed have Saiyan blood flowing within him, and verbally notes this on more than one occasion. Are we to assume that Cell can power up into Super Saiyan, along with Goku and the others?

To make matters even more complicated, Cell appears to even go "USSJ," the interesting stage between SSJ1 and SSJ2. in two instances. The first time Cell shows off this stage is shortly after Trunks transforms into USSJ2; Cell mocks him by also turning into an extremely "buff" stage, scoffing at the drop in speed and high energy consumption. Later, when SSJ2 Gohan knocks back Cell's giant Kamehameha with no problem, Cell makes the same mistake that Vegeta and Trunks had made, earlier; he bulks up his muscle size, which increases his over-all strength... but drastically reduces his speed. Is this USSJ? We don't really know for sure, but it's pretty convincing...!

"USSJ Cell"; DBZ Episode 165; Manga Chapter 387
Showcasing golden auras on more than one occasion, and even going so far as to power into a very USSJ-esque form, can we safely assume Cell can go SSJ... ?!

Since Cell is comprised of the greatest fighters across the universe, this naturally includes many of the Saiyans (including Vegeta and Goku). Saiyans that are recovered from near death exponentially increase in power (as seen by Goku and Vegeta during the Freeza arc).

When a single cell of Cell's is able to live through the blast on Kaiô-sama's planet, it somehow "remembers" the structure of kanzentai Cell (remember that Gohan had kicked out #18, which resulted in Cell degenerating back into 2nd form before exploding). This cell completely resurrects Cell into a "super" kanzentai form; one that is not only "perfect," but also has a great power-up due to the Saiyan DNA! Cell appears to almost be in Super Saiyan 2, so to speak, due to the large amounts of energy and lightning that surround his body.

In the North American version of the Budokai video games, this form of Cell's is referred to as "power-weighted."

DBZ Episode 189; Manga Chapter 413
While not physically different from regular "Perfect" Cell, in his new "super" stage, Cell tends to have lightning surround him a la Gohan's SSJ2. His speed and power rival SSJ2 Gohan, as well, most likely due to the Saiyan cells in him allowing him to recover and increase in strength after near-death.


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