Anyone that has watched anime knows the dynamic when a hero battles a stronger villain. The fight starts, the hero is overwhelmed, then he (it’s usually a he), remembers what’s at stake, and gains a power-up. However, occasionally the hero will get dominated and defeated by a stronger villain. Of course, the hero will defeat these villains at some point, but it always shocked when they lose. I have collected a list of my top five:
5. Grimmjow Jaggerjack verses Ichigo
When Grimmjow and Ichigo first encounter each other Ichigo is outmatched. He quickly releases his Bankai which Grimmjow proceeds to grab with his bare hands. When Ichigo uses Getsuga Tensho, it manages to damage Grimmjow. Instead of being afraid Grimmjow is delighted to have competition. This fight is aborted because Tosen arrives.
4. Mad Pierrot vs Spike
Mad Pierrot is an insane assassin. Spike stumbles upon Mad Pierrot’s massacre. Pierrot instantly targets Spike with his cane gun. When Spike returns fire he fails to get a hit because Pierrot has a shield. Mad best Spike in hand to hand combat. Despite Spike blowing up a propane tank, he fails to harm Mad Pierrot. Spike manages to escape, even though he’s badly injured.
3. Frieza (Final Form) vs Vegeta
Technically Vegeta isn’t a hero at this point in the series. However, he did join forces with Dende, Gohan, and Krillin to fight Frieza. After Vegeta uses Dende to heal him after being almost killed by Krillin, he declares that he’s now strong enough to kill Frieza. He incorrectly believes that he’s the fabled Super Saiyan. He unleashes everything he has on Frieza’s final form, but the later is too fast. Vegeta is shocked that the gap in their power is still so great. Frieza gains control beating Vegeta into the ground while strangling him with his tail. Helpless, Gohan, Krillin, and Piccolo can only watch.
2. Pikachu vs Raichu
This battle reminds me of my childhood. Pokemon was a phenomenon and each episode was a topic for the schoolyard the next day. Pikachu was and maybe still is one of the most beloved Pokemon. In the episode “Electric Shock Showdown”, Ash encounters Lt. Surge. This pits Ash’s Pikachu against Surge’s evolved Raichu. It results in a brutal beatdown of Pikachu. While the rematch results in a Pikachu victory, the initial fight was devastating for my youth.
1. Crocodile vs Luffy
It’s common for One Piece for characters particularly Luffy to be bested by a villain. It has happened several times most recently with Kaido, so I had a lot to choose from. I choose this battle because it was the first time I realized part of what made One Piece great, the fights. It might seem obvious to many, but at the time I wasn’t sure why people liked the series. Luffy is often at a disadvantage against Logia Devil Fruit users. Against Crocodile, Luffy almost dies as he goes into battle unprepared. His attacks don’t land and Crocodile’s devil fruit ability allowed him to drain the moisture from Luffy’s body. After the third time, Luffy prevails after exploiting Crocodile one weakness “liquid.”