When Trunks first showed up in Dragon Ball Z, he was an instant fan-favorite. He was this cool warrior from the future with a sword and a hyper-cool demeanor. He was also the second Super Saiyan ever seen in the franchise, rocking a unique parted hair look after transforming. Trunk's appeal as a character is undeniable, and he's got an amazing background story that introduced time travel into the Dragon Ball lore. In fact, in writing Future Trunks' background, Akira Toriyama was inspired by The Terminator, one of many American films that influenced the series.
However, this time-traveling Saiyan wasn't the only version of Trunks we got. There is also the present, main timeline version of Bulma and Vegeta's son. In the Majin Buu Saga, Trunks was now a kid, a very powerful one at that. In fact, he ended up being one of the warriors who helped keep Buu at bay. As cool as this character is, there are some dark facts about him, as there is with a lot of the Z-fighters. We gathered up some of the weirder secrets about the purple/blue-haired Saiyan, both his current and future self, to bring you 15 dark facts about Trunks!
15 NAMED AFTER UNDERWEAR
Most of the characters in Akira Toriyama's world are named after puns of some sort. The Saiyans, a name which comes from the Japanese word for vegetables, are all named after, you guessed it, vegetables. Pretty much every other character is named after food in some way, Gohan means rice, Chi-Chi means milk, and Krillin is named after the word for chestnut.
There is, however, one family line that is not named after food, and that is the Briefs family. Their last name is an obvious reference to underwear, and every member of the family is named accordingly. Bulma's name is a variation of "bloomers" and her first born son is named Trunks. Yes, the son of the proud Saiyan prince is named after boxers. Well, at least it's better than his sister, Bulla, aka "Bra."
14 THE DARKEST TIMELINE
We all know that Future Trunks came back in time to stop the androids, and that by doing so, he created an alternate timeline from his own. While he was able to save the main Dragon Ball timeline, his own future was unaffected. In his timeline, Future Trunks is the last surviving Saiyan. Even worse, he's the last surviving Z-fighter after the death of his mentor, Gohan.
It goes without saying that Future Trunk comes from the darkest timeline. After the androids were released, the world fell victim to their immense power, and after Goku died from a heart virus, every last powerful warrior on Earth was killed, leaving only Gohan and Trunks to make attempts at fighting back against their cyborg oppressors. This timeline got even worse in Dragon Ball Super when Trunks witnessed his mother's death at the hands of Goku Black.
In the main timeline, Trunks grew up in a relatively peaceful world. He got to have a normal childhood without the constant threat of androids attacking the Earth. Well, "normal" might not be the correct term to use, since Trunk was born into literally the richest family in the world of Dragon Ball. Like his father, he is essentially raised like royalty.
And we can see the effects this has had on Trunks, he's kind of a little snot-nosed punk, probably because he's pretty spoiled. Don't get us wrong, he's not the worst kid in the world or anything, but he's definitely got his father's pride, made worse by the fact that he's got all the coolest stuff thanks to his family's money. Good thing both his parents are so stubborn, or else he'd be a lot worse.
12 NEVER KNEW HIS FATHER (IN ALTERNATE FUTURE)
In the main timeline, Vegeta eventually developed a human side and started a family. After the Cell saga, Vegeta and Bulma grew closer and they eventually married. Vegeta actually turns out to be a pretty good family man and the couple eventually had a second child. That all sounds cute and dandy, but none of that happened in the dark timeline.
In the alternate timeline, Vegeta was killed before he and Bulma could really grow close. This isn't too tragic at first, but it's made much worse knowing that Trunk's first interaction with his father was in the past. Future Trunks never got to know his father in this timeline, and he was dismissive at best when he met the past version of him. Luckily, he was able to spend some time with Vegeta when they trained together to fight Cell.
11 ERASED TIMELINE (AND TIME CLONES)
When Trunks returned to his timeline, he was strong enough to defeat the androids that had ravaged the Earth. However, it wouldn't be the last threat that his future faced. Eventually, even more destruction would come at the hands of Goku Black, a mad Supreme Kai who took Goku's body to inflict his "zero humans plan" on the world.
Goku Black kills Bulma, but that's not the worst thing that happened in this timeline. After Goku Back and Zamasu's defeat, Zen-Oh was summoned by Goku. The omni-king decided to rid the universe of this rogue timeline and just straight up erased it from existence. Trunks and Mai were able to get away using the time machine — resulting in them living in a timeline where other versions of them already exist — but everyone that they knew and worked so hard to protect were completely wiped from the universe. That's some messed up s***!
10 HE KNOWS A LOT ABOUT HIS "ORIGINS"
When Trunk arrives in the past to warn the Z-Fighters of the coming android threats, he is initially hesitant to tell them exactly who he is. However, he does tell Goku in private that he is Vegeta and Bulma's son from the future. There's nothing particularly strange about this at first, but then Trunks goes into detail.
Turns out, Trunks actually knows quite a bit about how he was conceived. He knew enough to tell Goku that it was a one-night stand between Vegeta and Bulma that brought him into the world and that the two never grew to fall in love. This isn't particularly graphic, but Trunks' blush when he recounts his "origins" implies that his mother might have told him a bit too much about her time with Vegeta.
9 HIS SUPER SAIYAN CATALYST
Turning Super Saiyan takes a lot of emotion. This can be anger in the case of Goku's first transformation, but it can also be something like self-loathing, which was the catalyst for Vegeta's ascension to a Super Saiyan. Trunks' transformation was a combination of grief and anger, a dark event triggering his transformation.
Now, the canon of this is sometimes brought into question, but in Dragon Ball Z: The History of Trunks, we get to see the timeline that Trunks came from firsthand. In it, with all the other Z-fighters gone, Gohan trains Trunks to fight against the androids. Unfortunately, Gohan eventually dies at the hands of the androids, leaving Trunks without a mentor. Standing over Gohan's body, Trunks is devastated, and in his emotional state, his mentor's death acts as a catalyst for his first Super Saiyan transformation.
8 HIS "GIRLFRIEND"
In the original Dragon Ball series, the first enemies that Goku and his friends faced were Emporer Pilaf and his two lackeys, Shu and Mai. Mai was a full grown woman in the original series, and by the time that Dragon Ball Super rolled around, he would have been in her 50s or 60s. We say would because after using the dragon balls to wish for youth, Mai, Shu and Pilaf were turned back into kids.
The three eventually find themselves living at the Capsule Corp home, invited by Bulma, who did not recognize her old adversaries in their younger bodies. Mai seems to have given up on her evil ways and has even started to form a relationship with Trunks. This relationship seems to be inching towards something deeper with their future selves, a fact made incredibly creepy knowing that she is a grown woman in a child's body.
7 HE'S A CRIMINAL UNDER GODLY LAWS
Trunks has traveled through time quite a bit over the course of the franchise. The first instance was during the android and Cell sagas. Then, in Dragon Ball Super, he made a few trips back and forth to combat the evil Goku Black. Though the Z-fighters and Trunks himself don't seem to think twice about this, it is actually a great taboo.
You see, in the eyes of the gods/kais, time travel is highly forbidden, at least when mortals do it. Supreme Kais have access to time rings and are allowed to travel through time, but they're still not allowed to alter anything. Knowing this, Future Trunks is one of the biggest criminals in the eyes of the gods. Good thing Beerus and Shin are so lax with the Z-Fighters.
6 HE WAS KILLED BY CELL
Death is a pretty common thing in the world of Dragon Ball, as is resurrection. Thanks to the dragon balls, wishing someone back to life has become pretty commonplace. In fact, it's kind of a rite of passage when someone dies and comes back to life. Like most of the Z-Fighters, Future Trunks has met his maker, eventually being resurrected by the Dragon Balls.
Future Trunks' death was at the hands of Perfect Cell. After self destructing and reforming, Cell came back stronger than ever. To test his new strength, Cell almost immediately shoots Trunks straight through the chest with a full power death beam. The attack kills trunks instantly, but he was luckily revived by the dragon balls in the aftermath of the Cell Saga.
5 BEST FRIENDS WITH GOTEN
In Future Trunks' timeline, Goku died before the androids came, thus they never had their second child, Goten. But, in the main timeline, Trunks grew up alongside Goten, and the two are the best of friends. They like sparring together and often get into misadventures during the peaceful times before and after the Buu saga.
There's nothing particularly dark about their friendship on the surface, but think about how messed up it is. Trunks' dad once tried to kill Goten's, and Goten never even met said dad for the first seven years of his life! It gets worse, too, since Vegeta tends to use Trunks as a means to show Goku how strong he and his family line are, attempting to surpass him in any way he can.
4 HE'S SHARED A BODY WITH GOTEN
We've talked about how weird fusion is before, but we're gonna mention it again. It's a particularly gross concept when you think about the details of it, and the fact that it's between two best friends just makes things even weirder. Of course, the craziest thing of all is that their fusion reflects the fusion that their fathers would eventually pull to fight Super Buu.
It's all kind of messed up. Seriously, think of your best friend. Now, think about doing a little dance and suddenly you're the same person. You share thoughts, actions and feelings, amongst other things. The strength they gain from fusion is incredibly valuable, but we're surprised they've fused more than once, as though they aren't completely weirded out by sharing a body.
3 BEAT UP MIGHTY MASK
When Trunks and Goten planned to sign up and enter the world martial arts tournament, they thought they'd be fighting with the grown ups. But, it turns out there was a new addition to the competition, a youth division. Trunks and Goten were disappointed by this, and though they competed anyway, they also found a way to compete in the adult's division as well.
Trunks and Goten snuck into the competition in one of the most hilariously cliche ways possible, by standing on each other's shoulders and hiding under a disguise. The disguise they got was stolen from one of the participants, a fighter by the name of Mighty Mask. Trunks chopped the poor guy in the neck using his Saiyan strength (which had to have hurt) and knocked him out cold. Pretty messed up if you ask us.
2 A YOUNG SUPER SAIYAN
Trunks and Goten are the youngest Super Saiyans in Dragon Ball Z, able to transform at such a young age perhaps because they are half human. Whatever the reason, it's an impressive feat, one that leaves Vegeta speechless the first time his son goes Super Saiyan. Well, perhaps speechless isn't the right term, jealous might be more like it.
Vegeta's infamous pride is somewhat wounded when he sees his eight-year-old son go Super Saiyan after he struggled so long to achieve the form. As a result, he challenges his son to hit him, with the promise of going to an amusement park, so he can test his strength. Trunks is able to hit him and Vegeta hits him back... hard. We're not entirely sure, but Vegeta might have been angry that his son could transform so young and took it out on him with physical violence.
1 COULD HAVE JUST USED THE DRAGON BALLS
Future Trunks' timeline is insanely dark and messed up, but there was a better solution than time travel, which didn't even fix the problem anyway. Trunks could have just used the dragon balls to wish away the androids or something like that. However, when Piccolo was killed, Kami, whose life was bound to his, also died, causing the dragon balls to turn to stone.
However, Dende was able to reactivate the dragon balls in the main timeline, after Kami fused with Piccolo. Furthermore, Namekians like Dende have the power to create dragon balls, so what's stopping him from making new ones and helping his human friends out? Sure, he might not have been the guardian of Earth in this alternate timeline, but he could still help out. Or even better, Trunks could learn from the main timeline and bring Dende to be the new guardian and make new dragon balls.