The question of whether Piccolo is good or evil, hero or villain, saint or sinner, is very interesting, because if you ask different fans of different Dragon Ball shows, you will get different answers! The nature of Good and Evil is not a simple question and has had ethics scholars arguing for millennia, but here at Dragon Ball Guru, we feel confident enough to answer the question of Is Piccolo evil?
No, Piccolo is not evil. Piccolo used to be evil, but through a friendship with Goku & Gohan, he became good and helped defend planet earth from destruction multiple times, despite seeking world domination when he was younger.Click here to take our Dragon Ball Z quiz!!!
Who is Piccolo?
Piccolo, AKA Piccolo Jr, is a Namekian warrior and the reincarnation of the Demon King Piccolo. So although they technically have the same spirit, they have different bodies and different formative experiences.
There’s no doubt that Demon King Piccolo was extremely evil until the day he was killed by Goku, courtesy of a flying headbutt through his stomach in Episode 109. But it should be noted that Piccolo is a different character from Demon King Piccolo.
The character, just known as Piccolo, is who most Dragon Ball fans know and has been in every series of the show, starting with the end of Dragon Ball, right through until Dragon Ball Super.
Did Piccolo use to be evil?
When Piccolo was born, he didn’t have a loving mother and father to teach him right from wrong. All he had were the memories from his father ingrained in his brain, along with a blueprint for how to live his life.
So the first thing Piccolo tried to do was take over the world, and in Dragon Ball, that meant winning some martial arts tournament, apparently! But entering this tournament and being a bit of a bully is the extent of Piccolo’s evil arc. So to paraphrase Dr Evil, Piccolo is the diet coke of evil. Just one calorie, not evil enough.
So in our opinion, Piccolo was never evil; he was just following his genetic instructions but wasn’t truly evil in his head and in his heart. But for argument’s sake, for the sake of the next paragraph we are writing, let’s say Piccolo was born evil…
How did Piccolo become good?
So if we assume Piccolo was evil, then when did he become good? Good and Evil are binary, so it’s not easy to identify a point in time when Piccolo became good.
But certainly from the start of Dragon Ball Z, during the Saiyan Saga ,when Piccolo first met Raditz, did Piccolo start to understand the value of having friends to fight a greater evil. He said he’d just team up with Goku to eliminate Raditz and then go back to world domination but then something he’d never witnessed before happened. Goku sacrificed himself to save his family, friends, but also Piccolo.
This moment alone probably pushed Piccolo from being more good than bad and inspired Piccolo to train Gohan for Goku to help with the upcoming Vegeta threat. So Piccolo became good very early on in Dragon Ball Z and has been one of the good guys ever since.
The moment we knew Piccolo was good for certain
In the Dragon Ball universe, actions speak louder than words. There is one final test of whether a person is good or evil, and that is their judgement when they die and meet King Yamma.
If you are bad, you go to hell, I mean heck, and if you are average, you drift off as a spirit. But if you are good, you get to keep your body and get a nice halo.
When Piccolo was killed by Nappa, after bravely sacrificing himself for his new best pal Gohan, as you can see on youtube here, the gods decided that Piccolo was a good-hearted spirit and allowed him to keep his body in the other world, which allowed him to train with King Kai.
So what more proof do you need?
Did Piccolo become good when he merged with Kami?
For those who don’t know the long history of Piccolo and Kami, they were once the same being. They came to Earth from Namek, and this character, known as the Namekian, was a reasonably decent person and wanted to become the Guardian of Earth.
But there was a great evil inside of this character, so they had to be split in half, creating Kami, who was good, and Demon King Piccolo, who was evil. So Kami became the guardian of earth, while Demon King Piccolo tried to take it over.
And then, many years in the future, when Cell threatened Earth, Piccolo and Kami decided to get the band back together and reform as one being.
But Piccolo was already good at this point, so he didn’t need Kami’s goodness to become uber good. Piccolo was already good before he merged with Kami.
Is Piccolo Evil?
So as of Dragon Ball Super, no, Piccolo is not evil. I would argue that Piccolo was never really, but if he was, he became good right at the start of Dragon Ball Z. However, in life, as in Dragon Ball, you can’t rule anything out, and who’s to say Piccolo couldn’t turn heel again, and renew his plans for taking over the world…