As we know from Goku's (and Gohan's, as well as a few others) childhood, Saiyans turn into giant raging monkeys when exposed to the moon (or even an image of it).

It seems that this is contained entirely within the tail of a Saiyan, as when it is removed, the power of the transformation is lost.

However, the strength, or power of that transformation, is that lost also? Or does that explain the "untapped" power that allows a Saiyan to transform into a Super Saiyan?

The primary question though is: does the moon still affect Saiyans that have had their tail cut off/removed?

2 Answers 2


In the current continuity, I don't think there's any suggestion that there is a connection between the Super Saiyan transformations and the tail.

However, in the (now non-canon) sequel series Dragonball GT, there was a Golden Great Ape form that was essentially what happened when a tailed Saiyan combined the power of the Ape and Super Saiyan transformations, and which was a stepping stone to the Super Saiyan 4 form.

  • 1
    I didn't know GT was ever canon Commented Oct 4, 2017 at 18:06
  • 2
    You're right, of course. It was never approved of by Toriyama. But for a long time it had no canon to compete with so it was the most official unofficial continuation.
    – ConMan
    Commented Oct 4, 2017 at 22:19

I would say that if even just a picture of the moon sets it off, then that not only makes this a lot easier to answer, but also is the key to said answer. It must be that either: if the tail being on or off is what dictates whether the Saiyan transforms into an ape, then the sight of the moon sends a neurological signal to the tail, telling it that it's seen the moon, and the tail then sends a signal back, telling the brain to initiate the transformation, or: if it doesn't depend on the tail, then it's a simple matter of the sight of the moon trigger a set of neurons to initiate the transformation. Unless I seriously have neurosignals completely messed up, but that's what I was always taught in school growing up.

  • 1
    This isn’t really an answer to the question. You’ve used your real world knowledge to explain how it might still affect the tail but also how it might not. Justifying it either way doesn’t really answer the question. Instead you should pick one and provide evidence to support your case.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Commented May 28, 2020 at 7:31

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