Slight spoilers may be talked about below, so please be sure to watch the latest episode before reading on! This review is based off of the dub version of Super that currently airs on Toonami.
Episode 76 picks up right where we left our heroes last week, with Goku and Krillian deep inside the Forest of Terror as the mysterious fog is causing the enemies of their past to terrorize them. Almost all of the villains are here from Dragon Ball Z like Frieza, Cell, Radditz, Nappa, etc. with also Tanborine and King Piccolo from the original Dragon Ball. Almost instantly, Goku and Krillian know that these are in no way the actual villains from the past and instead just the forest messing with them. This causes Goku to walk up to the Vegeta entity to say they can’t get hurt by these things and that they’re weak. This then causes the Vegeta entity to punch Goku which sends him flying. Goku then starts fighting off with all of the entities, on the other hand Krillian is getting massive PTSD and flashbacks when he goes against the Frieza, Dabura, Buu and Tamborine entities.
The reason being is that these certain villains where the ones who killed him in both Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z years ago. Goku tries to snap Krillian out of it to fight them but Krillian finally snaps back at his friend and says that he’s just not as strong as Goku is and that he’s weak.
This then causes Goku to be shellshocked but they have no time to argue as the forest entity is constantly multiplying, they then decide to fly high up and shoot a kamehameha together but the forest entity simply vanishes and then possesses the trees, creating a massive dome blocking any escape out of the forest for good.
Elsewhere, back at Turtle Hermit Island, Master Roshi, Babba and Android #18 are watching Babb’s magic globe looking in at the forest. It’s reveled that this whole forest was just a test that Roshi set up to train the two heroes and that the herb he wants wasn’t the actual goal.
Back in the forest, the villain entities do come back again and separate the two, Goku is putting up a decent fight but gets overwhelmed and sent into the forest, while Krillian gets knocked out of the sky and sent into a ravine as we cut to a commercial break.
When we come back, we see Krillian struggling to regain himself in the river but then he hits his head on a branch and passes out, he then plunges over a giant water fall, washing up on a tiny rock island. Goku is in the deeper side of the forest and deals with the majority of the forest entity. He realizes that they’re getting just as powerful as he is the more he powers up to fight them, so instead he actually depowers himself and tries to remain calm. This actually works and it causes the forest entity to stop attacking him. But since he can’t fly away, due to how the forest is alive still, Goku instead cause on an old friend that hasn’t been seen since the early days of Dragon Ball Z, the flying Nimbus! Goku gets on Nimbus and then flies off looking for Krillian.
Krillian isn’t as lucky on his end as he has to deal the forest entity that is mimicking Frieza, but it’s not just one Frieza, oh no, it’s actually a dozen of them that constantly keep getting bigger and bigger taunting him in the process. Eventually the forest entity morphs into super-sized Nappas instead and starts closing in on him. Krillian starts blasting back at them but nothing works, not even his signature attack, the Distructro Disc that can slice anything in half. However when he launches this and see’s it cuts the forest entity in two and the white light the entity is leaking out before it heals fast, Krillian theorizes that the entity is ki based and might be growing stronger due to how he is behaving. This then causes our hero to stop attacking entirely and begins meditating, calming himself significantly and unlocking a new power-level for himself and luckily in the process eliminating the forest entity entirely.
Goku then arrives with Nimbus, but before he can get off, Master Roshi and Babba have one last test for them in the forest. Goku, alone with Nimbus get wrapped up by a fake-version of the golden, Super Shenlong and its up to Krillian with his new power attained to save the day!
At first Krillian wonders if Goku can just blast the fake-dragon and get rid of it fast, but then Goku says he can’t cause Nimbus will get hurt. So then Krillian charges up to his new power level and punches the fake-Super Shenlong in the face, causing the faux dragon to drop Goku and Nimbus. The two heroes then power up (with Goku going Super Saiyan Blue) and they fire a combined Super Bending Kahamehame at the fake-Super Shenlong, defeating it.
After they win, the forest finally clears up with the tree dome breaking away and the dragon drops the herbs that Master Roshi wanted. The duo collect it all and then fly back with Nimbus to Turtle Island where Krillian is greeted by his wife and Master Roshi collects his herbs. Some time later, Android #18 shaves off Krillian’s hair and he’s back to being how he use to be in the previous series! Goku then shows up and asks if he wants to train with him and Krillian says he will but only if his friend doesn’t go Super Saiyan Blue.
First up, this was actually a pretty nice episode that was really straight forward with absolutely zero plot twist or expository bantering. Goku weirdly felt like his old self from Dragon Ball Z and not his goofy self that’s seen a lot in Dragon Ball Super, so it was a return to form. The real star of the episode was of course Krillian and how he attained a new power level. I honestly can’t say what this new power level is, it sorta looks like Gohan’s Potential Unleashed but instead of a pure-white aura there’s a slight yellowish hue to it. Maybe it’s on par with the regular Super Saiyan 1 level?
One of my favorite bits of the episode was when the forest entity took on the form of Bulma with Goku wondering why it took on the form of their friend and Krillian quipping that an angry Bulma is truly scary. It was also nice to see Nimbus again after so long; I think the last time we saw that cloud was back during the beginning episodes of the Majin Buu saga nearly twenty years ago. Also we saw the return of Super Saiyan 3 just briefly before Goku started meditating the forest entity away, it doesn’t get a lot of love in the series as a whole but when it does appear you know things might get serious.
The biggest take away of the episode is not just the fact that Krillian got a new power and went back to looking like his good old blad self, but it’s actually the animation quality! There’s a strange sharpness to it all now that feels sorta like how Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball GT looked like, it felt almost throw back like when compared to the rest of how Super is. But not all of the animations looked right, especially when they started showing multiple versions of the Frieza forest entity. Certain ones had really weird, contorted faces that just seemed so off, yet still this was a forest entity, so maybe that was a stylistic choice to be like, “hey, it’s not the real Frieza?”