In short, Broly seems to hate Goku because of Goku’s childhood rage. However, this reaction to Goku has a deeper meaning about the search for conflict inside warrior class Saiyans.
What really sets Broly off when confronted with Goku is:
- Saiyan warriors can’t help but fight.
- Broly and Goku are rivals by nature.
- Broly’s rage is manipulated by his father.
Saiyan warriors can’t help but fight.
Firstly, we should take a look at why Saiyan’s need to fight as much as they do.
Inspired by kung fu movies and the Chinese novel, Journey to the West, manga artist Akira Toriyama created Goku to be a wild character in his original Dragon Ball manga. Goku is an exact opposite of his first companion, the tech guru, Bulma. With Goku’s primal strength and Bulma’s dragon ball radar, the two set off to collect the dragon balls to make a wish. However, they would find more Buddhist teachings than wishes on their quest.
Early in Goku’s life, Goku’s feral personality changed through the care of his adopted grandfather, Gohan. This elderly martial artist gave Goku a purpose and a method of controlling his aggression. As Goku grows, his desire for combat never leaves. However, Goku uses this drive to better himself instead of conquering others. Most of his fights aren’t personal whatsoever. He just wants to test himself.
Other Saiyans didn’t receive this goodness, with only their internal drive to fight guiding them. Not only did they compete with the harsh planet they evolved on, they also must compete with one another to establish rank in the hierarchy. Naturally, only the strongest rise to the top.
In many ways, this constant need to conquer was their ultimate downfall as a species. After the galactic ruler Frieza used them as competent soldiers, he saw their true potential. Therefore, they became a target for annihilation.
Broly and Goku are rivals by nature.
Now, only a handful of Saiyans are left in the galaxy. Ironically, these are the most powerful Saiyans Frieza feared in the first place: the children of high-ranking warriors. Therefore, these remaining Saiyans possess the next jump in Saiyan power. Ultimately, most of them would become Super Saiyans.
However, this escape from Frieza’s wrath happened when Broly and Goku were infants. They already had power readings off the charts, even though they came from relatively lower ranking warriors. Both were already showing signs of extraordinary promise. One would possess near limitless will, the other near limitless wrath. Ironically, the one that would possess the near limitless will (Goku) would be the most wrathful as a child in Saiyan custody.
Unfortunately, the calm and powerful Broly is placed next to the wrathful Goku. Obviously, the Saiyan scientists wanted to keep the most promising warriors separate from the others. With such primal drives dictating Saiyan behavior, there’s no wonder why such a deep-seeded memory would stay with Broly. His Saiyan desire for conflict would remember his rambunctious rival for the rest of his life.
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Broly’s rage is manipulated by his father.
Broly is directly controlled by his father (Paragus) through a headband device in the DBZ rendition. Paragus flies to Earth to convince Prince Vegeta that he has created a new home world for the Saiyans. However, everything is not quite what it seems. The team that accompanies Vegeta to this new home world begin noticing a mostly empty planet inhabited by enslaved aliens. Obviously, the Z fighters aren’t cool with this and bust up the captors.
However, Broly keeps his cool as the movie progresses—under direct control from Paragus. It’s the arrival of Goku that sets off Broly’s unkempt rage. That said, can we really just blame Goku here? I mean, if the Broly was directly hypnotized his entire life, surely something is going snap at some point. Now, as a powerful Saiyan, this guy’s only way to vent his inherent primal rage is in front of him. Broly’s old foe from so long ago arrives.
Of course, he’s going to go off the rails. His instincts have been caged for far too long. Saiyans don’t work that way.