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“You fool! This isn’t even my final form! Wait until you see my true power!”
And boy, does it make you look oh-so absolutely fabulous~
If there’s one anime/manga villain that has stood the test of time and encased the hearts of many, it’s none other than Dragon Ball Z’s own Frieza. The maniacal warlord and his power-ups continue to have relevance in Japanese pop culture today. however, what’s more interesting is his effeminate nature in contrast to the manly heroes. Is the character an indication of how effective effeminacy can be when it is supported by power?
For the few who don’t know about Frieza, he is a alien warlord obsessed with gaining immortality in order to rule the galaxy. Frieza was considered to be one of the scariest beings in all of DBZ because of his immense power and empire. He tends to act polite, but in a condescending manner towards others. Frieza has four forms that he goes through, with each subsequent form being more powerful than the last. The final form he takes on is unique, as he appears short and somewhat non-threatening. His battle with the main character, Son Goku, is one of the most important and iconic battles in shonen manga history. Frieza is relevant today as his look was a popular Japanese cosplay costume in 2012 and four Japanese men dressed up as him to entertain folks during a race once.
While some fans may have unnecessarily made a big deal about Frieza’s gender, let’s all agree that his quirks give him an aura like no other. In some ways, having feminine traits can make you an effective leader. If you act feminine, it shows how confident you really are about yourself. Having a bit of femininity makes you more understanding and willing to collaborate with others. Though in the case of our elitist madman, he comes off as arrogant and understanding of how to manipulate his men in times of crisis.
Most people know that Japanese men tend to be effeminate. If you think about it, Frieza is a character that represents the power a woman can have over a man. Look at how he handled the Saiyans for a extended period of time. In a sense, he emasculated the remaining few in his army to a huge degree to prevent the rise of a Super Saiyan. Does that mean Frieza is a form of anti-feminism? Or does the character represent how androgyny has affected men to a huge degree?
While androgyny can be the best of both worlds, the world is still run by those who possess strong masculine traits. Frieza lacked one thing that makes a man stand out when compared to Goku: independence. Frieza was spoiled by his parents and the empire given to him. Goku was never given anything at all. He was the “man’s man” in a nutshell. It is often criticized that effeminate men aren’t able to care for themselves. Does that mean androgyny is bad? No, it’s only bad if there is no proper balance of your masculine and feminine qualities.
Even though he’s already reached his final form, there is nothing final about Frieza with his continued popularity.
After all, real men wear pink or purple, right?