Cell: Truly evil or a product of his genetics?

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Horgus
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Cell: Truly evil or a product of his genetics?

Post by Horgus » Sat Aug 02, 2008 11:19 am

Cell was created with the genetic makeup of Goku/Piccolo/Vegeta/Nappa/Frieza/King Cold.

The natural instincts in his blood gave him a strong urge to fight and grow more powerful. Added in with the mental conditioning given by Dr. Gero, makes Cell a creature of instinct.

My question revolves around Cell's nature.

Is he true evil, in the category of Piccolo Daimao? (who was literally the evil aspect of God)

Majin Buu in his 'kid' form could also be considered a form of pure evil, being literally created to battle the Gods of the Universe themselves.

Or was he a more neutral kind of evil, one that could be compared to Freeza? Granted, he annihilated entire worlds and races, and cut a swathe of death and conquest throughout the galaxy. However he was capable of non-evil actions, he did after all have underlings and even alluded to making Namek into a 'prison planet', which suggests a form of justice system in his empire. He also let Dende pass by him on the way to Saichoro's place.

The Saiyan's were hardly any better at all, they seemed even at their best to revel in conquest and destruction, and were only stopped when Freeza deemed them too powerful. King Vegeta even made a statement suggesting that by killing Freeza, he could take his place as Emperor of the universe.

I propose that Cell could even be considered slightly less evil than the Saiyan's or Freeza, doing only what he was created and told to do.

Yes at times he crossed certain lines and engaged in many selfish and evil acts: the crushing of #16's head being one.

What do you think?

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Post by Terra-jin » Sat Aug 02, 2008 11:59 am

In my book, Cell's evil stems more from his nurture than from his nature. I do believe he inherited a bit of evil from both aspects, because of his genetic makeup. In any case, Dr. Gero indoctrinated Cell to view himself as the ultimate warrior, creating an obsession in Cell for this 'title', if you will. So Cell had this need to be the strongest, which overruled any trace of decency or compassion that might get in the way of that. He was, in other words, focused solely on his own purposes; he (and many, if not all, villains) was the epitome of selfishness.

However, besides his extreme selfishness (and subsequent lack of any regard for other life), Cell enjoyed the suffering of others. This is a greater brand of evil, IMO, because he actively seeks to cause pain. This trait is not shared by all villains; Super Buu, for instance, only wanted to be the best and to win in battle - he didn't actively need to see people suffer. The Saiyans are also of this kind: while they're extremely selfish, they don't actually want to hurt people. Cell did have this sadistic streak, to the same extent as Freeza I think. For comparison, Babidi elevated sadism to a whole different level than Cell or Freeza, wanting the entire Universe to suffer as much as it could.

So Cell has a strong egoistic streak and a relatively small sadistic streak. The egoism of Cell was caused by the indoctrination of Dr. Gero (Cell's nurture), while the sadistic streak was probably inherited from Freeza's cells (his nature). I think a portion of Cell's egoism was also due to his nature, seeing as how he inherited cells from the Saiyans and Freeza.

It's interesting to see how many types of evil are seen in Dragonball's villains. We have the dictator (Freeza), the omnicidal maniac (Babidi), the egoist (Saiyans), the mindless destroyer (Kid Buu) etc. etc.
Basically, you can judge any villain by the measure in which he satisfies his own desires combined with what he wants to inflict upon others.
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Post by Kroni_Hunter » Sat Aug 02, 2008 4:01 pm

The question here is whether Cell has free will or not, right? Well why wouldn't he? If you say Freeza had a choice to do good or evil and simply chose evil, than Cell should be able to as well because his "sadistic" side came from Freeza's cells. Dr. Gero probably influenced him and even put programming into him, but as we saw from Android 16 the Androids have the choice to override that programming and still make a choice. Cell is no different.
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Post by Rocketman » Sat Aug 02, 2008 5:24 pm

Goku, Vegeta, 18, and Piccolo all became good despite their 'genetics'. Cell was evil because he wanted to be.

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Post by Zuhalter2000 » Sun Aug 03, 2008 1:29 am

Genetics is a LOT more complicated than it was implied in DBZ, but going by how genetics was portreyed in the series, Id say he was made that way. He used that powers of the most powerful beings to make the ultimate warrior to avenge the RR. So I guess uts not really Cells fault, he was raised to think his evil ways were right :P.
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Post by Forgotten Hero » Sun Aug 03, 2008 1:55 am

Rocketman wrote:Goku, Vegeta, 18, and Piccolo all became good despite their 'genetics'. Cell was evil because he wanted to be.
Vegeta turned good but the cells collected from him were from the battle on earth: Nappa & Vegeta vs. Z-Fighters.
Also, don't forget Freeza. Cell is only based on genetics. He is only evil because of what he is made of.
Cell is kinda like a son of several parents(As weird as that sounds). He inherits cells from everyone.
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Post by mAcChaos » Sun Aug 03, 2008 2:32 am

I don't think he thought he was "right," he knew right from wrong. He just didn't care.
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Post by Forgotten Hero » Sun Aug 03, 2008 2:41 am

mAcChaos wrote:I don't think he thought he was "right," he knew right from wrong. He just didn't care.
I don't know...I am on the fence on that one. I think Cell thought he was righteous because of Dr.Gero's programing. But I also do think Cell can comprehend right from wrong, wise or unwise thinking.
He only doesn't care because he only cares about himself and his power.
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Post by Kroni_Hunter » Sun Aug 03, 2008 2:57 am

He has cells from Goku and his friends too, so he's got just as much good in him as he does bad. I don't see why this is such a difficult argument. Cell is a living organism he is not even a machine, although he might have some kind of programming just like 17 and 18. But that programming is not mind control, it is more like that little devil on your shoulder whispering to get you to do bad things. Cell is no more evil than Freeza. It was a bad upbringing for both of them and that is all. He was not evil by nature.
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Post by Forgotten Hero » Sun Aug 03, 2008 3:12 am

Kroni_Hunter wrote:He has cells from Goku and his friends too, so he's got just as much good in him as he does bad. I don't see why this is such a difficult argument. Cell is a living organism he is not even a machine, although he might have some kind of programming just like 17 and 18. But that programming is not mind control, it is more like that little devil on your shoulder whispering to get you to do bad things. Cell is no more evil than Freeza. It was a bad upbringing for both of them and that is all. He was not evil by nature.
Cell has selected cells from all of those fighters. Dr.Gero choose the cells personally. The only conclusion that can be made on Cell's behaviors are what we see. And we see the cells of Freeza and maybe King Cold shine, evil and tyrannical cells.
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Post by SSJ2bardock » Sun Aug 03, 2008 4:23 am

I'm not uderstanding how genetics is leading to personality. Let's take a theoretical possibilty and say that your father was evil, but you were orphaned with no knowledge of your genetic connection to your evil father and raised by people who weren't evil. Would you be evil just because of your genetics even though you were raised in a good home?
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Post by Forgotten Hero » Sun Aug 03, 2008 4:33 am

SSJ2bardock wrote:I'm not uderstanding how genetics is leading to personality. Let's take a theoretical possibilty and say that your father was evil, but you were orphaned with no knowledge of your genetic connection to your evil father and raised by people who weren't evil. Would you be evil just because of your genetics even though you were raised in a good home?
That is true! Goku is kinda in that situation, Bardock not being too nice of a spirit.
That is a good point. But keep in mind Cells genetics were hand selected, so personality traits could selected.

lol, most of this thread is mostly speculation.
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Post by SSJ2bardock » Sun Aug 03, 2008 4:36 am

Just because they were hand selected doesn't change the fact that genetics don't affect personality. Personally, I think Cell was evil because Gero brainwashed him.
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Post by Forgotten Hero » Sun Aug 03, 2008 4:43 am

SSJ2bardock wrote:Just because they were hand selected doesn't change the fact that genetics don't affect personality. Personally, I think Cell was evil because Gero brainwashed him.
I'm sure if it was just brainwashing, I think it was also his programming, absorbing androids & revenge for the Red Ribbon Army.
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Post by Kroni_Hunter » Sun Aug 03, 2008 5:43 am

Let's take a look at what cell actually is...
He is a clone, granted not in the normal sense. He is the collaboration of many genetics mixed into one. These genetics would affect appearance, strength, intelligence, and abilities such as regeneration. No matter how you mix the genetics, it is impossible to create learned behavior. None of the fighters used to make cell were inherantly evil as we have already agreed upon. Having a bad temper, an addictive personality, or distrust in others is all learned behavior. When Cell was an embryo, Dr Gero's computer spoke to him or something, telling him stories to make him hate Goku and neglecting to sensitize him to the feelings of others. He never had a chance to understand those concepts. He developed evil learned behaviors and simply lacked the knowledge of right and wrong to realize the errors of his ways.
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Post by SSJ2bardock » Sun Aug 03, 2008 6:17 am

Kroni_Hunter wrote:Let's take a look at what cell actually is...
He is a clone, granted not in the normal sense. He is the collaboration of many genetics mixed into one. These genetics would affect appearance, strength, intelligence, and abilities such as regeneration. No matter how you mix the genetics, it is impossible to create learned behavior. None of the fighters used to make cell were inherantly evil as we have already agreed upon. Having a bad temper, an addictive personality, or distrust in others is all learned behavior. When Cell was an embryo, Dr Gero's computer spoke to him or something, telling him stories to make him hate Goku and neglecting to sensitize him to the feelings of others. He never had a chance to understand those concepts. He developed evil learned behaviors and simply lacked the knowledge of right and wrong to realize the errors of his ways.
You basically just gave an example of brainwashing :D
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Post by Raki » Sun Aug 03, 2008 11:45 am

Cell took life from others knowing what it would do to them. He was fully aware of his actions and the consequences.
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Post by SSJ2bardock » Sun Aug 03, 2008 1:10 pm

Contrary to popular belief, brainwashing doesn't mean to turn somebody somebody into an obediant zombie. Brainwashing is where you tell somebody something for long enough that they begin to believe it no matter how untrue it is, Nazis did this during WWII.
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Post by Kroni_Hunter » Sun Aug 03, 2008 8:13 pm

I know he understands the concept of murder, he just looks at it in a different way, like survival of the fittest. He was brought up to believe he was the strongest creation and whatever creature is the strongest is the winner. The people he killed were just the losers, it was their own fault for being weak because he believed thats how the world really works.
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Post by Raki » Sun Aug 03, 2008 9:37 pm

Kroni_Hunter wrote:I know he understands the concept of murder, he just looks at it in a different way, like survival of the fittest. He was brought up to believe he was the strongest creation and whatever creature is the strongest is the winner. The people he killed were just the losers, it was their own fault for being weak because he believed thats how the world really works.
Cell understood clearly that absorbing the humans and Androids meant the end of their lives. He was cynical about it saying "They should be glad to be a part of me". Cell had the intelligence not to follow on that path, but he did so anyway. The Cell character gets no sympathy from me.
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