Trunks is one of the most popular characters in Dragon Ball Z, Dragon Ball GT and Dragon Ball Super. The character has played a critical role in a number of different sagas across the three shows, but his backstory is also one of the more complicated ones, as there are two versions of him: Future Trunks and a younger Trunks.
Trunks first appeared on screen in episode 119 of Dragon Ball Z, which aired in 1991. The character hailed from a future in which Goku had died as the result of a heart virus, which then allowed Androids 17 and 18 to run rampant across Earth. As many of the Z-Fighters were dead, Gohan trained Trunks. However, Gohan was eventually killed -- spurring Trunks into turning Super Saiyan for the first time.
Trunks is an incredibly formidable fighter. After traveling to the past, Trunks easily dispatched Frieza, who at that point in the series was still one of the most dangerous enemies the team had ever faced. He went on to become one of the Z-Fighters to challenge Perfect Cell and, although he lost, he proved himself incredibly strong. Upon returning to his timeline, Trunks defeated both the Androids and Imperfect Cell.
Future Trunks has played a major role in Dragon Ball Super, which takes place after Buu is defeated. That new series saw Future Trunks return from the past as a result of a threat from Goku Black, also known as Zamasu.
Check out the video below to get the full history of Trunks' evolution.
A younger version of Trunks eventually became a major player in Dragon Ball Z. By the time the Buu Saga rolled around, young Trunks had already gained the ability to go Super Saiyan. He later went on to learn how to do the Fusion Dance, which allowed him to merge with Goku's son Goten and create the immensely powerful Gotenks. This version of Trunks also featured prominently in Dragon Ball GT.
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