A list of the most memorable scenes from Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball series would probably be a book-long article, seeing how old the series is and how many iterations it has. It would be hard to pick a list of the most memorable ones, i.e., to limit ourselves to a certain number, but it was easy to pick one of them and explain it to you. At one point during the Dragon Ball Z anime, Piccolo destroys the Moon. Later on, Vegeta needed to “conjure” up a fake “Moon”. So, did Piccolo really destroy the Moon in Dragon Ball Z? Keep reading to find out!
During his training with Piccolo, Gohan suddenly transformed into the Great Ape and went berserk. Knowing what to do, Piccolo destroyed the Moon to help Gohan return to his normal state. It turned out that it was only a trick, a technique known as Illusion, which Piccolo used to make the Moon seemingly disappear and, thus, help Gohan.
The rest of this article is going to bring you a detailed explanation of the events surrounding the assumed destruction of the Moon at the hands of Piccolo. You’re going find out what he did exactly and how he did it, which will clear up the mystery surrounding this major event from the series. Some spoilers might be present, so heads up!
Did Piccolo really destroy the Moon in Dragon Ball Z?
The events we are about to describe happened during Gohan’s training with Piccolo in Dragon Ball Z, during the Saiyan saga. After the events, surrounding Raditz’s arrival and Piccolo surviving a battle against him, Piccolo would take Gohan before the astonished look of Krillin, Bulma, and Kame-Sen’nin.
When the Saiyan Raditz (the brother of Son Goku) arrives on Earth, he begins to search for the strongest warrior on the planet. There he finds Piccolo with whom he has brief contact. The Namekian was unable to do any harm to him, however, Raditz leaves before finishing him off upon finding a sign of an individual with somewhat greater power.
The Namekian would follow Raditz to Kame House, watching and hearing the Saiyan’s encounter with his brother. Piccolo would join Goku to face Raditz, who had taken Gohan with him. Both followed him and started a fight with him, but they were outmatched, so Goku decides to distract him so that Piccolo can attack him with his new technique called Makankosappo.
Goku holds his brother by the tail in such a way that Piccolo impales him with his new technique. But Raditz tricks him into letting go, managing to dodge the technique. Everything seemed lost until a furious Gohan, because of what Raditz did to his father, attacks him with all his might, doing great damage, a fact that surprised everyone.
Goku took advantage of the moment and grabbed his brother from behind, who could not free himself due to the damage he had received, then Piccolo would launch another Makankosappo which hit the target, piercing both brothers. Piccolo would approach a dying Raditz to tell him that Goku would be revived thanks to the Dragon Balls.
Said information would be collected by Raditz’s tracker, telling Vegeta and Nappa, so the Saiyan told Piccolo that his “friends” would go to Earth. Goku would show signs of life, despite having his chest pierced, asking him when they would arrive, his brother would reply that within a year, making fun of Piccolo due to the time he had left to live, provoking the anger of Piccolo who would finish him off.
After surviving, Piccolo would go to an oasis-like region, a region surrounded by desert, where he would throw Gohan into a small lake to wake him up. Upon doing so, the little hybrid began to cry, to which an annoyed Ma Junia responded with a threat. Piccolo would explain the situation to Gohan: Goku and he had been able to finish off the Saiyan who kidnapped him, Goku had died in combat, and some subjects even stronger than Raditz would arrive on Earth in a year, and all the necessary help would be required.
Piccolo would explain to Gohan that he contained an impressive hidden power. The little boy was skeptical about this, so the Namekian set out to show him, taking him by the head and throwing him towards a mountain. At that moment, in which Gohan briefly wakes up his power, the boy destroyed the mountain and impressed both Piccolo and himself, at which point Piccolo meditates and would realize that he could be training a prospective opponent that could be very dangerous.
Piccolo tells him that he himself would train him to learn how to use that power, to which a frightened Gohan initially refuses, stating his intention to be a great investigator. Ma Junia would reply that he could be, but only after defeating the Saiyans. Again Gohan would refuse, stating that he would like his own father to train him. Piccolo replied, stating that Goku is very strong but not good for the role of a teacher because he was very soft; this is why Gohan was, according to Piccolo, so spoiled.
A resigned Gohan asks him what he had to do first to train, to which Piccolo replies, roughly: “The first thing is that you shouldn’t do anything, just survive.” Piccolo’s intention was to leave Gohan for six months so that he could learn to fend for himself and thus become strong in spirit, strong in mind, and not only in body.
Immediately, Gohan gets scared stating that he will die, to which Piccolo only responds with the following sentence: “If you want to hate me, you must start by hating your destiny, just like I do”, walking away from the area before a desperate Gohan. So at first, he leaves the child on his own but closely watches over him just in case, while training for the arrival of the Saiyan.
He had to intervene twice when Gohan transformed into the Great Ape upon seeing the full moon; Piccolo would realize the danger the moon represented so he decided to destroy it. After six months Piccolo trains with him so that he learns to fight. As time passes, he begins to appreciate the boy.
The Saiyan would arrive before time; Piccolo would realize it since he noticed that Goku would be revived earlier than planned. Vegeta and Nappa landed in the Eastern capital, which ended up being destroyed by the latter. They would then set out to locate the subjects with the highest Ki, noticing the presence of several powerful Ki, the strongest being Piccolo’s and Gohan’s, heading towards their position.
Krillin would be near the spot meeting them before the others. Vegeta and Nappa would arrive right away, taking out six Saibaimen. The remaining Z fighters would appear, to engage the enemies. One was defeated by Tien Shinhan and then killed by Vegeta, another committed suicide along with Yamcha, three more were killed by Krillin, leaving only one, he was going to attack Gohan, but the Namekian killed him with an Explosive Breath Cannon.
How did Piccolo make the Moon disappear?
As you can see, Piccolo seemingly destroyed the Earth’s Moon. Now, we all know that the destruction of the Moon would have catastrophic consequences, which is why it wouldn’t make sense that it actually happened. And, as it turned out, later on, the destruction was only a trick perpetrated by Piccolo to calm Gohan down and make him revert back from his Great Ape form.
Piccolo never actually destroyed the Moon, rather, he used a technique called Illusion which made it as he did. This was actually stated in the video game Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, which is not a canon source, but since this source confirms it and the theory itself makes sense, we think it more plausible than the theory suggesting that Piccolo actually destroyed the Moon. That one just wouldn’t make sense. So, how did he do it? Well, according to Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, he used a technique called Illusion.
Illusion is the name of a special technique used by several characters. According to Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, while training for the Saiyan attack, Piccolo didn’t actually destroy the Moon but instead created an illusion of its destruction so that Gohan would revert to his Great Ape form. (The Moon was still missing, though, in later chapters, causing Vegeta to use a power ball to transform into the Great Ape despite a supposed full moon night having arrived).
Princess Snake uses hallucinations to capture her prey, and at one point casts an illusion on Goku so he thinks he was still in his palace when in fact he was in his womb. When Goku and Vegeta invaded Super Buu’s body, Buu retaliated by creating illusionary copies of the fighters he had previously absorbed that are just as powerful as the originals.
In the Tournament of Power, Dercori used illusions via his mystical talisman in his battle with Master Roshi, with 129 possible illusions in his arsenal. Xiangca used her ultrasonic exchange to create mirages of the defeated combatants against Universe 7. Moro used illusion clones of himself during the Galactic Patrol Prisoner Saga, first draining energy from New Namek and then again against Ultra Instinct Sign Goku. After gaining the Perfected Ultra Instinct himself by copying Merus, Moro’s illusions became better than before, and able to trick the Perfected Ultra Instinct Goku.