Monkeys Fighting Robots

Anime has shown us some of the most fantastic ideas and worlds of wonder over the years, able to accomplish these feats largely through the use of different items of extreme power. Items such as the Spiral Energy in Gurren Lagann (which allows people to have their giant robots do impossible feats), and the Jewel of Four Souls (The Shikon Jewel, which gives Demons extra power) from Inuyasha allow the characters to reach goals and possess powers we in the real world could never dream of. The trick is making sure the origin of the powers –  and what they are capable of  – are clearly established throughout the course of the story. Except a couple of series that don’t take the time to properly spell out either the origins of the Macguffins/Dues Ex Machina/Doodads or what they are capable of in the course of their runs, which usually leads to the fans having to make explanations of their own.

The Silver Crystal from Sailor Moon

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What we don’t know:

Where did the crystal come from? The crystal is an object of power capable of resurrection, teleportation, healing, and destructive blasts that have vaporized evil creatures on more than one occasion. Before dismissing it with the “It’s just magic!” explanation, keep this in mind: During the series Sailor Moon Stars it was revealed that the Sailor Senshi (Sailor Scouts in America) were powered by internal batteries called Star Seeds. It was during this arc that Sailor Moon battled with the final enemy Sailor Galaxia (who was possessed by the ultimate evil being Chaos) who was gathering all the Star Seeds in the universe to obtain ultimate power. So, if the Star Seeds are the source of power in the Universe, what exactly is the Silver Crystal? This is more explained the original manga (where her crystal is actually her Star Seed) but they never explained it in the original anime so its origin is still a mystery. 

The Dragonballs from Dragonball

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What we don’t know:

The true origin of the Dragonballs is never truly explained. The best description of the Dragonball and their power is given in the series by Master Roshi in an episode of Dragonball:

“The Legend as I was told goes something like this. In the beginning there was only one Dragonball. It was huge. I mean REALLY huge, it had to be. It held all the mystical energies of the user. An ancient tribe discovered it and was inspired by its magnificent power. To ensure such an evil would never get their hands on it, the Dragonball was divided into seven smaller orbs and scatter across the globe. Separately the Dragonballs were useless, but when all seven were united then a single voice could summon the Eternal Dragon for one wish, and one wish only.”  (abridged from the Dragonball episode, “The Legend of a Dragon”).

The problem with this explanation is this was before the introduction of Kami (who made the earth Dragonballs) and before the reveal that Kami was an alien from the planet Namek (the balls original home). The balls are also seen to have limited powers of the maker of the balls but those makers (Dende, Kami, and Guru) have never displayed the ability to bring people back from the dead.

The One Piece of One Piece

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What we don’t know:

Though it has been hinted at repeatedly throughout the course of the series, we still have no solid answer as to what the One Piece is. Everything from ancient weapons of power, rare jewels, and fantastic devil fruits (the food that when eaten gives someone super powers) have been hinted at being in the One Piece. It is these widely varied beliefs that keep all the different characters on the journey going strong. The one comfort fans of the series can take is that this unexplained item will eventually be explained once the series reaches its finale. But after 15+ years of stories and 78 volumes of manga you have to ask, “Will what they find really be worth it?”

The Power of Prince Dio from Revolutionary Girl Utena

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What we don’t know:

What exactly is the power of the Prince and will it actually allow someone to revolutionize the world? The fact that an upside-down castle (probably created by the prince) and the Rose Gate are needed to contain his power points greatly to the idea that the power is that of a god.

There also is the fact that the prince is such a powerful being, he is able to split himself into two beings: one of pure good (who remains asleep in the floating castle) and one of pure evil (Akio Ohtori). This further demonstrates the immense power he had when he was still whole. Since what Dios showed Utena was something eternal and immortal, it would stand to theorize he had gazed upon what was eternal for many years to realize just how unchanging it was (trying not to say what it is as it’s the biggest spoiler of the entire series). So does this mean someone who obtained this power would be able to change the world?   Unfortunately, the director is known for being a bit vague on the details and in flashbacks all we really get is he was a hero of great power but never learn where the power comes from of if he was just born with it.