I am not personally of the opinion that getting bogged down in the details of the franchises we know and love ruins them. I’m fully capable of full suspension of disbelief, but it is fascinating to wonder if some of what we read or watch might actually be possible. Mutations, faster than light travel, invisibility...What if, right?!
A few years ago I read, reviewed, and continue to love and recommend James Kakalios’s The Physics of Superheroes, which delves into the real world science working (or not working) behind the scenes of iconic moments and abilities in the comic world.
And a bit more recently than that I discovered and fell in love with Because Science with Kyle Hill – A super entertaining Youtube series that blends math and science with pretty much every pop culture franchise out there. And he does so as simply as possible. I mean, he is still at times talking quantum physics, but his colorful doodles and humor package it all in something even my scientifically-challenged behind can follow.
I get particularly excited about new episodes when I am a fan of the franchise that falls under his microscope, and there are few things in the nerdy realms that I fanboy over harder than Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball. Most longtime fans will admit to desperately wishing elements of that franchise were real; the shameless among them will even confess trying one or two of them out (I gave “charging up” a go as a young man, I’ll admit).
So what does science have to say about things like training in a gravity chamber or going Super Saiyan? You might be surprised! I’ve rounded up his Dragon Ball episodes for you below. Watch them all to learn which elements of the anime you might actually be able to take advantage of in your quest to be stronger than Kakarot (or at least Yamcha)!
And the best part is that each episode is dripping with lots of in-jokes and references that any DBZ fan will absolutely love!
Would Gravity Training Kill You?
We actually already have the technology to artificially increase gravity, but would we survive a workout in it? I’m not even talking about 500G…How about just 5G?
Will Wearing Weighted Clothing Really Make Me Stronger?
Are super heavy shirts, shoes, and wristbands really an effective strength-gaining strategy? More importantly: Would they even be comfortable?! I mean, what would they have to be made of to allow freedom of movement while also clocking in at 300lbs+, anyway?
How Long Does It Take To Charge a Spirit Bomb?
This question immediately raises another: Well, are you watching DBZ or DBZ Kai?!
But seriously: How long would it take for Goku to gather enough energy to destroy a planet if he were standing on the surface of the Earth?
How Does the Hyperbolic Time Chamber Work?
Can science explain how someone might experience a single day’s time passing while another simultaneously experienced an entire year? Yes, actually! But is it possible for us here on Earth?
Can I Go Super Saiyan IRL?!
Maybe the most pressing of all the questions! Turns out science can actually explain how you could appear to go Super Saiyan, at least. You might even be able to throw a Kamehameha!
Even if DBZ isn’t your jam, head on over to Because Science’s Youtube channel and search his videos for a franchise that is up your alley. Odds are fair that he’s talked nerdy about something for you!