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DRAGON BALL Publisher Reveals the Reason Super Saiyan Hair is Blonde

Within the world of Dragon Ball created by Akira Toriyama, members of the Saiyan alien race can undergo a startling transformation as they draw upon their superpowers. The characters who possess the ability to transform into a Super Saiyan form not only become physically bigger, their hair color always shifts to blonde. Although many hypotheses as to why have floated around for years, one especially persistent theory is that Toriyama was making a commentary about race. It turns out that the real reason is far less complex.

Via Kotaku and the Japanese-language publication Topic NewsWeekly Jump editor-in-chief Hiroyuki Nakano made an appearance on Japanese TV and shared the explanation for the hair color change given to him by Toriyama: he just wanted to save time while illustrating the art. Toriyama didn’t enjoy coloring in the hair, as it added to his workload. So he simply left the hair uncolored in the original black and white manga, which was translated to blonde hair in subsequent color renditions and in the animated adaptations.

That explanation may not have any deeper meaning, but it makes perfect sense. Illustrating manga and comic panels is a very time-consuming process, and Toriyama simply took a shortcut to shave away some of his excess work. It ended up being a strong visual choice, as the blonde hair of the Super Saiyan forms are unmistakable and iconic. We can’t picture Dragon Ball without them!

What do you think about the genesis of the Super Saiyan hair color? Let’s discuss in the comment section below!

Feature image: Bandai Namco/Shueisha

Read more in our next exciting post about… Dragon Ball Z!

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