The Classic Dragon Ball Z Villain You Forgot Will Live Forever

As some of the most powerful relics in the Dragon Ball multiverse, many unscrupulous figures have sought the Dragon Balls to be granted magical wishes from the Eternal Dragon to help further their nefarious agenda. One of the more common wishes desired by many of Dragon Ball Z's early antagonists, including Vegeta and Frieza, was immortality -- not just remaining free of aging but also impervious to mortal injuries. And while both of them would fail, one often overlooked villain from DBZ actually succeeded in using the Dragon Balls to gain immortality: Garlic, Jr.

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Garlic, Jr. was introduced as the primary antagonist in the 1989 anime film Dragon Ball Z: Dead Zone, the first film in the franchise to bear the Dragon Ball Z moniker after three Dragon Ball films. Set shortly before the events of the main anime series -- with Gohan's latent potential still largely unknown to his family and Piccolo still a committed villain before the Saiyan Saga -- Garlic, Jr. and his minions attack Chi Chi and Gohan while Goku is away fishing, seizing Gohan's four-star Dragon Ball.

By the time Goku and Piccolo arrive on the scene, temporarily agreeing to a truce against their mutual enemy, Garlic, Jr. had already used the Dragon Balls to wish for immortality. Unable to physically defeat the magically empowered villain, Garlic, Jr. opens an extra-dimensional portal to the Dead Zone to seal away his opponents -- only for an upset Gohan to lash out with his latent powers and push the villain into his own pocket universe prison.

While most of the Dragon Ball Z anime films are considered non-canonical for contradicting the chronology of the anime series and not being included in Akira Toriyama's original manga, the events of Dead Zone would briefly resurface in the anime for a filler story arc. While Goku was still traveling back to Earth after defeating Frieza on Namek, Garlic, Jr. escaped from the Dead Zone when the source of his powers, the Makyo Star, nears Earth and empowers him enough to break free. Recruiting the demonic Spice Boys as his latest henchmen, Garlic, Jr. attacks the Lookout and douses the Earth with Black Water Mist to make its inhabitants his violent subjects. All looks lost until Gohan destroys the Makyo Star and the weakened Garlic, Jr. is sucked back into the Dead Zone.

It's important to note that while Garlic, Jr. is immortal, he can still feel pain and be knocked around by powerful attacks, even after undergoing a combat transformation into a larger, more muscular form. Given that Goku and Piccolo were able to temporarily defeat Garlic, Jr. after taking off their weighted clothes, this suggests Garlic, Jr. is significantly weaker than Raditz. However, the Makyo Star's proximity to Earth during the Garlic, Jr. Saga made the villain able to nearly overpower the young Saiyan after his time on Namek.

While Garlic, Jr.'s appearances have been limited to an anime film and filler story arc, there's always the chance he could reappear at some point in Dragon Ball Super, given that he is immortal and remains imprisoned within the Dead Zone. However, even getting his wish did not significantly strengthen Garlic, Jr., if at all, demonstrating that even immortality has its limits as the Z Fighters have gotten far more powerful than their initial skirmishes with the villain.

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