10 smartest Dragon Ball characters, ranked

Bulma Briefs is one of the franchise
Bulma Briefs is one of the franchise's most well-known inventors (Image via Toei Animation)

In the Dragon Ball series especially, someone’s smartness and intelligence can be measured in a myriad of ways. Son Goku, for example, is smart when it comes to fighting, yet his overall intelligence is lacking and generally disappointing.

Bulma Briefs, on the other hand, is incredibly book-smart and inventive, yet utterly clueless when it comes to fighting skills. The series is full of such characters, though its book-smart scientists and inventors typically handle complex sections of the narrative.

Here are the ten smartest Dragon Ball characters, ranked from least intelligent to most.


Deities dominate Dragon Ball’s smartest characters list

10) Piccolo

Piccolo as seen in the DBS: Broly film (Image via Toei Animation)
Piccolo as seen in the DBS: Broly film (Image via Toei Animation)

After fusing with Kami in Dragon Ball Z, Piccolo now has incredible intelligence both in fighting and outside of it. Kami’s role as the omniscient guardian of Earth allowed him to observe nearly everything on the planet if he desired. His age and wisdom further imply his intelligence.


9) Perfect Cell

Perfect Cell as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Perfect Cell as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)

Perfect Cell was an incredibly intelligent being, due to his genetic construction comprising of the best fighters and smartest people on the planet. His intelligence also branched into combat as well, as he displayed incredible tact, cunning and perception during fights. There’s little doubt that Perfect Cell is one of Dragon Ball’s smartest characters.


8) Adult Gohan

Adult Gohan as seen in the Super Hero film trailer (Image via Toei Animation)
Adult Gohan as seen in the Super Hero film trailer (Image via Toei Animation)

Adult Gohan is arguably one of the most book-smart people in the series. While his fighting intelligence and skills have waned in the years since beating Perfect Cell, his academic nous has only gone up. His constant research and dedication to learning provide more than enough evidence for his inclusion here.


7) Future Trunks

Future Trunks as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Future Trunks as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)

As the son of Bulma Briefs and co-creator of the Time Machine, Future Trunks is undoubtedly one of Dragon Ball’s most intelligent characters. He’s also incredibly astute in combat and fighting, giving him a well-rounded sense of general knowledge. His intelligence and quick thinking have been shown more than enough times to justify his inclusion.


6) Dr. Briefs

Dr Briefs as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Dr Briefs as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)

Dr Briefs is the father of Bulma and one of the most well-respected scientists in all of Dragon Ball. He created the Dynocaps Capsule system, which Capsule Corp is known for. Furthermore, he designed and built multiple functioning spaceships throughout the series. There’s little doubt he’s one of the series' smartest characters.


5) Dr Gero

Dr Gero as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Dr Gero as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)

Likewise, Dr Gero was brilliant and respected in the field of biology and cybernetic studies. His grasp on the creation and mechanisms of life was remarkable, even receiving praise from both Bulma and her father during Dragon Ball Z. Despite his reprehensible morality, he’s undoubtedly one of the franchise’s smartest characters.


4) Bulma Briefs

Bulma as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Bulma as seen in the Z anime (Image via Toei Animation)

As the inventor of the Time Machine and Dragon Radar, as well as the daughter of Dr Briefs, Bulma is undoubtedly one of Dragon Ball’s smartest characters. She’s incredibly intelligent and devotes her time to scientific endeavours rather than combat. Despite sometimes lacking common sense, her incredible ingenuity more than justifies her inclusion on this list.


3) Beerus

Beerus as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Beerus as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)

As Universe 7’s God of Destruction, Beerus is a nearly omniscient being who is likely far more knowledgeable than any mortal. While he may not be as intelligent in scientific areas and endeavours, he’s likely smarter than the typical Dragon Ball mortal.


2) Whis

Whis as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)
Whis as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)

Whis receives the nod over Beerus for his role as the latter's instructor. The two are both deities, likely possessing similar levels of omniscience. However, he’s often called the Destroyer’s instructor or teacher, implying some superiority over him.


1) Grand Priest

The Grand Priest as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)
The Grand Priest as seen in the Super anime (Image via Toei Animation)

Finally, the Grand Priest is likely the smartest character in all of Dragon Ball. He serves as Zeno’s guardian, and as such, is likely privy to knowledge and information that even other Angels cannot access. His overall demeanour also implies omniscience, further solidifying his top spot.


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This article was modified on Friday, July 14, at 3:19 am.