cell 2nd form

You wanna know about this guy Tien? Do you wanna KNOW about the most underrated character in Dragonball?

Think back to the 22nd tournament. This guy. This earthling, was the strongest character (bar Roshi/Goku for being equal strength) on earth. He had surpassed his master, and while he trained he moonlighted as an assassin. He proceeded to win every match of the tournament and became the champion of the entire world. When King Piccolo showed up? He personally went to fight the Demon King and learned the Mafūba himself. Something no one else had managed to do without a master.  Goku defeated King Piccolo after receiving a Zenkai (saiyan strength boost) AND drinking the sacred water. And then he was trained by God himself to defeat Piccolo’s son years later. By this point Goku had far outclassed Tien. You know what Tien did?

He climb Korin’s tower, trained there (without getting any sacred water) and then he trained alone with Chaoitzu for 3 years until the 23rd tournament.

He got no special treatment. No power boosts and no training from God, and he managed to outclass Goku with his weights on. Let that sink in. The Saiyan who had consumed the sacred water and was further trained by the God of earth considered this enlightened human a true challenge. Tien had managed to make himself stronger than God, if you think about it. All by himself.

Then when the Saiyan’s arrived, he got to Kami’s and was trained by him, increasing Tien’s strength over 5 fold. Yamcha beat the saibamen but let his guard down. But to Tien? That Saibaman wasn’t even worth his time. 2 hits and the monster was down. It looked like he did it in 1 breath.

Tien then faced Nappa alone and, while beaten, took more hits than about anyone in that battle and managed to die by his own choice.

He made it to King Kai’s place, and chose to stay there longer than anyone else had previously in the series. When he made it back to earth I would estimate him at 2nd form Freiza, standing up to Vegeta when the Saiyan was being difficult. During that time he heard Goku had become a super saiyan, and decided to focus not only on his strength but his special abilities. With his training he created the Neo KiKoho, managing to hold off 2nd form Cell (something the androids or super saiyans could not achieve) and bought time for 18 to escape.

Even beforehand, the Super Namekian Piccolo chose Tien specifically to hunt down imperfect cell while Trunks and Krillin went to destroy Gero’s lab. (Probably for Tien’s eyesight as well as skill).

Afterwards, after training for 7 years once more, he managed to save Hercule, Bee, and possibly Ultimate Gohan from a blast by Super Buu (gotenks absorbed). Plus the clothing he wore in the buu saga just screams “weighted training clothes.”

This guy reached enlightenment, became champion of the world, and never stopped training despite all of the transformations the Saiyans and Namekian’s received. A true Martial Artist to his last breath.