From Dragon Ball Encyclopedia, the ''Dragon Ball'' wiki

(Redirected from Tien Shinhan)
This article (Tenshinhan), or a section of this article, is very messy. Please edit this article so that it looks more polished.

"I might just be a pothole in the road to you big guy, but it's going to be one heck of a deep pothole!"
Tenshinhan in "Say Goodbye, 17"

Tenshinhan (テンシンハン, Tenshinhan; FUNimation "Tien Shinhan", Viz "Tenshinhan") is a martial artist.

Tenshinhan's Japanese name is a pun on the word Tenshindon, a quasi-Chinese dish actually invented in Japan consisting of a crabmeat omelet over rice. It gets its name from the fact that it was originally made using high-quality rice. The character’s name is written in kanji (天津飯, Tenshinhan) with a katakana furigana reading (テンシンハン, Tenshinhan) to indicate that it has a foreign, i.e. Chinese, reading. Unlike Chaozu, Tenshinhan is also the normal Japanese reading for the kanji.


Tenshinhan in Dragon Ball.

Tenshinhan has a Third Eye (心眼\, Shingan). He is originally a cold-hearted and ruthless warrior, never caring for anyone's life with the exception of his fellow students and mentors. This brutality can be plainly seen when he crushes Yamucha's and another fighter's leg during the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament. However, he finds a life-long best friend in Chaozu, for whom he cares deeply. Due to Master Roshi's and Goku's consolations, he changed his demeanor and became one of the most respected warriors on the planet. Before he transitioned to the good side, he planned to kill Goku during the World Martial Arts Tournament as he was seen as a threat to himself and his cohorts. However, this mentality soon changes with the realization that he disagrees with the brutal methods employed by his masters, Shen and Mercenary Tao. He goes off on his own to train, and soon becomes a powerful ally to Goku and the others. His personality transitions from one of a brutal killer to that of an honorable warrior, one who cares deeply for those he strives to protect. He occasionally tries to repent for his former brutality but eventually rises above his horrid memories and looks toward the future.

He is seen striving to become a powerful warrior in Dragon Ball Z and still hopes to surpass Goku one day. He valiantly fights and defeats a Saibaiman when the Saiyans arrive and does battle against Nappa during which Chaozu sacrifices himself in vain, causing Tenshinhan to put all his effort into one final attack which fails. Tenshinhan dies a hero's death, but is revived later by Shen Long. When the conflict with the Androids comes into full swing, Tenshinhan puts his life on the line numerous times when assisting his friends against the mechanical demons, most notably when using his life-force to hold Cell at bay, sacrificing his own life to allow Androids 16 and 18 to escape, thus saving the Earth from certain destruction. After the defeat of Cell, Tenshinhan goes off to continue his training, and when Fat Boo threatens Earth's existence seven years later, he arrives just in time to save Son Gohan from certain death. However, he is knocked out when Buu's severed legs reanimate and kick him, and later perishes when Earth is destroyed.


Dragon Ball

Early life

A young Tenshinhan training with Tao.

During the early years of his life at Crane Hermit's Crane School, Tenshinhan was taught defensive techniques by Crane Hermit's younger brother, Mercenary Tao, as seen in a flashback in "Tenshinhan vs. Mercenary Tao".

Fortuneteller Baba Saga

Main article: Fortuneteller Baba Saga

Chaozu and Tenshinhan scamming a village.

Tenshinhan appeared near the end of the Fortuneteller Baba Saga. Because of his harsh upbringing, he was initially cold and heartless, thinking nothing of exploiting innocents and inflicting pain. Son Goku and Turtle Hermit, however, eventually helped him to see the folly of his master's teachings and he became a trusted ally. He later fought as part of the Z Warriors, but retired after he was no longer able to compete with the power of the Super Saiyans.

Chaozu and Tenshinhan were both the star pupils of the Crane School. They first met Goku when they were pretending to kill InoShikaCho and scamming villages for their fake services. Goku tried to expose them when he discovered that they were actually con artists, but Tenshinhan turned the people against Goku after he accused Goku of being in league with InoShikaCho. He accomplished this by hanging InoShikaCho over a fire and telling Goku to cut the rope and burn the beast alive. When the merciful Goku refused, he was chased out of the village.

When Goku decided to swim to Papaya Island for the upcoming tournament, Tenshinhan and Chaozu could be seen traveling on a boat to compete.

Tien Shinhan Saga

Main article: Tien Shinhan Saga

Tenshinhan at the Tenkaichi Tournament.
Tenshinhan battling against Yamucha.
Tenshinhan battling against Jackie Chun.
Tenshinhan and Goku fighting at the grand finals.

Tenshinhan's first major role in the series begins at the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament during the Tenshinhan Saga. He is a student of the Master Shen, who is entering Tenshinhan and Chiaotzu to defeat the students of his rival, the Turtle Hermit Master Roshi. Tien faces little in the way of challenge during the preliminaries and easily makes his way into the finals.

Using Chaotu's mental powers to fix the ordering of the matches in the quarter-finals, Tenshinhan decides to first face off against Turtle student Yamcha, whom he had been exchanging hostile words with since the start of the tournament. Yamcha puts up a better fight than Tien expected, but was still not a significant threat to Tien, who not only defeated him, but went further and ended the match by needlessly breaking Yamcha's leg. Soon after this fight, Tien learns of the death of his role-model Mercenary Tao by the hands of Turtle student Goku and the tournament becomes more about revenge than victory.

Tenshinhan's next opponent was the winner of the 21st World Martial Arts Tournament, Jackie Chun and he faces his first true challenge. Jackie Chun challenged Tien not only in physical combat, but also began to warn him about following an evil path. With the help of the Master Shen, Tien learns that Jackie Chun is actually Master Roshi in a disguise and proceeds to use Roshi's signature move, the Kamehameha (which he learned in the fight against Yamcha) against him. After this, despite having shown none of his true power, Roshi concedes the match and hops out the ring. He walks away he can now go back into "happy retirement". Tien proceeds to track down Roshi shortly afterwards to find out why he forfeited, to which Roshi responds by telling Tenshinhan that it is time for younger fighters, Tenshinhan included, to take his place.

Tenshinhan then proceeds to battle in the final round against Goku himself. Goku is a powerful opponent and the fight seems to be relatively even until Goku suddenly becomes unable to throw a punch or dodge an attack without becoming frozen in place. Tien quickly learns that Chiaotzu is rigging the fight under Master Shen's orders and he demands that Chiaotzu stop since he wants a fair match. Master Shen takes this as defiance and orders Tien to kill Goku, but Tien, thinking about his own desires for the first time, humbly refuses. (Thus, Master Roshi's words have proven true and Tien rejects the path of an assassin.) The now infuriated Master Shen orders Chiaotzu to kill both Tien and Goku and when Chiaotzu refuses, Crane then threatens to kill him instead. Roshi puts an end to this by blasting Master Shen out of the stadium with a Kamehameha, allowing Tien and Goku to concentrate on their match.

Tenshinhan and Goku continue to battle until Tenshinhan eventually decides to put an end to it and use his ultimate attack, the Tri-beam. He warns Goku to expect and dodge the blast (as there is no way to survive being hit by it) planning to force him out of bounds instead. Tien proceeds to use the attack and destroys the entire arena; because of his warning Goku dodged by leaping incredibly high in the air. Tenshinhan is convinced he'll win at this point, as he can fly and Goku cannot, but Goku uses one final Kamehameha to propel himself into Tien like a rocket. Both fighters then fall to the ground, Goku slightly ahead. Goku attempts to use another, smaller Kamehameha to slow himself down, but is hit by a truck and lands first. Tenshinhan lands an instant later, thus winning the tournament.

After the match, Tenshinhan offers Goku half of the prize money as he recognizes that, while he could have killed Goku in the first place, it was mere luck that he landed second. He also apologizes to Yamcha for using such excessive force during their fight. Master Roshi offers to let Tien stay at the Kame House, but Tien declines, stating that he cannot follow the teachings of another, even if he has betrayed his master.

King Piccolo Saga

Main article: King Piccolo Saga

Tenshinhan facing Drum.

The good mood is short-lived however, as Turtle student Krillin is unexpectedly killed while separated momentarily from the group. Along with his body there was a note with the character (demon) on it. Master Roshi tells everyone that it represents an incredibly powerful Demon King, King Piccolo, who was sealed away centuries ago by Master Roshi's old master using the suicidal Evil Containment Wave technique, but is now apparently free again. On hearing this, Goku, still not fully recovered from his battle with Tien, rushes off to seek revenge.

Realizing the gravity of the situation, Tien volunteers to help in anyway he can. He is informed of the seven Dragon Balls, which when collected summon a Shenron that can grant any wish, and, along with Chiaotzu and Master Roshi, is soon on a quest to retrieve them in order to have the Dragon eradicate King Piccolo. After finding several of them though, their radar which tells them of the Dragon Balls locations shows them that the remaining ones are actually coming to them, meaning King Piccolo is also seeking the Dragon Balls and is coming for theirs.

Before King Piccolo can confront them, Master Roshi unexpectedly knocks Tien out and hides him in a cave. Master Roshi plans on using the Evil Containment Wave against King Piccolo and, since Goku is thought to have already been killed, Master Roshi considers Tien to be the last line of defense for the planet in case he fails. Semi-conscious, Tien can do nothing but witnesses Master Roshi's ultimately unsuccessful stand against the powerful Demon King. King Piccolo wastes no time joining the Dragon Balls together to summon the Dragon and Tien, in desperation, orders Chiaotzu to quickly make a wish to destroy King Piccolo before the Demon King can make one himself. Chiaotzu tries, but is quickly killed mid-sentence from a blast by King Piccolo, an act Tien can only watch. King Piccolo continues to make his wish and then destroys the Dragon, knowing it's the only thing that can stop him.

After regaining his mobility, and King Piccolo has long gone, Tien practices the Evil Containment Wave, having learned it from watching Master Roshi perform it. Once he has fully mastered it, Tien heads off to King Piccolo's location in the world capital to confront the demon. After he arrives and challenges King Piccolo, he is horrified on discovering that the vessel to be King Piccolo's prison is cracked and useless from his practicing. Knowing that he won't be able to use the Evil Containment Wave, Tien decides to confront King Piccolo regardless.

King Piccolo, not seeing Tien as being worth fighting, spawns a new minion, Drum, to take care of him. Drum quickly beats Tien, and is about to finish him when Goku intervenes and saves Tien, killing Drum with a single kick. Tien can only watch as Goku and King Piccolo then battle it out, using the last of his strength part way through their match to quickly fly in and levitate Goku out of the path of a powerful attack by King Piccolo. When the battle seems to be turning against King Piccolo, the Demon King decides to take Tien hostage in order to force Goku to allow himself to be crippled. Tien is then discarded by King Piccolo, but Goku is more resilient than King Piccolo thought and uses one final attack to kill the Demon King.

With the battle over, Tien heads back to the Kame House with Goku's friends Launch, Yamcha and Bulma. He vows to train harder in order to bridge the now massive gap between himself and Goku.

Piccolo Jr. Saga

Main article: Piccolo Jr. Saga

Tenshinhan vs. Tao
Tenshinhan vs. Goku

Tien keeps up his training, redoubling his efforts after learning that Goku is being trained by Kami, Guardian of the Earth. With the dragon restored, a wish is made to bring all those killed by King Piccolo back to life. Tien then trains with Yamcha and the newly resurrected Krillin and Chiaotzu until they are informed by Master Roshi that, to be able to compete with Goku, they are going to need to find better ways to train than are available at the Kame House. They all head to Korin's Tower and train with Korin before each going their own separate way.

Three years after King Piccolo's defeat, Tien, along with Yamcha, Chiaotzu and Krillin, return to compete in the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament. He is somewhat surprised to see the now teenaged Goku and hopeful that he's even more powerful than before. His real shock, however, is seeing Piccolo Jr., and realizing that something of the Demon King has survived. He remains silent about the matter for the time, not wishing to create a panic.

When the lots are drawn up to determine the order of the fights, Tien again has Chiaotzu manipulate the cards so that none of the group (Tien, Yamcha, Goku, Chiaotzu and Krillin) or Piccolo Jr. fight each other in the preliminaries.

The early matches seem to be going as usual, with the group quickly dispatching their foes. Tien then receives a horrible sense of something happening to Chiaotzu. He races to the scene and finds Chiaotzu heavily wounded and unconscious, his opponent turning out to be the now cybernetic Mercenary Tao. Mercenary Tao explains that after his seeming death by Goku, he was rebuilt into the half-man half-machine before them, and that he seeks revenge on both Goku and the "traitor" Tien. Tien gladly accepts his challenge, wanting to avenge Chiaotzu.

They get their wish as Tenshinhan and Mercenary Tao are the first of the eight finalists to fight. Mercenary Tao lunges at Tenshinhan, but Tenshinhan sidesteps and counters, knocking Mercenary Tao to the ground. Tenshinhan then states that he forgives Mercenary Tao for what he did to Chiaotzu and tells him to forfeit. Mercenary Tao refuses this and presses on his assault, though he is clearly outclassed by Tenshinhan. After Tien grabs one of Mercenary Tao's wrists, Mercenary Tao pulls a surprise maneuver and detaches his mechanical hand, revealing a knife that he quickly uses to slash Tien, scarring him forever. Though disqualified for use of a weapon, Mercenary Tao doesn't care and quickly drops his other hand to reveal a cannon and fires a Super Dodon Ray at Tien. Tien nullifies the large blast with his Kiai and then proceeds to defeat Mercenary Tao with a single punch to the gut. He takes Mercenary Tao's unconscious body out of bounds and presents it to the watching Master Shen, telling him to take Mercenary Tao and leave, never bothering him again.

Tien's next fight is the one he's been waiting for, a rematch against Goku. The battle starts with numerous quick sparrings and shows to be fairly even, but with Tien having an edge in raw speed. This changes after Goku removes his weighted clothing though, making Goku fast enough to steal Tenshinhan's belt without Tenshinhan even noticing; resulting in Tien's boxers to be exposed to the audience. Realizing that he won't be able to defeat Goku physically, Tenshinhan uses a new technique he has created, the Multi-Form, and splits into four identical copies of himself. The Tenshinhans disperse to the four corners of the ring, each one then firing a ki blast at the center, where Goku is, resulting in a large explosion which Goku has to leap to avoid.

The Tenshinhans quickly fire again, this time from their third eyes, at Goku, sending him crashing back to the ring. The Tenshinhans warn Goku to give up before he gets hurt, but he appears unfazed by their attacks, and states they won't be able to pull off that trick again, which they then promptly attempt. Goku dodges the beams this time though, and uses the Solar Flare against them, blinding the Tien's. He then quickly dispatches each of them, causing them to revert back to the single being. Goku states that the new technique Tien has a critical weakness, as Tien's power is divided amongst the duplicates. With the fight over, Tien looks forward to their next rematch, suspecting that Goku was still holding quite a bit back.

Tien plays little role in following battles, he can only watch as Goku fights the seemingly all-powerful Piccolo Jr. He offers his assistance at several points, but is denied by Goku who wants to fight the demon alone, though he does open the Sealed Flask, which Piccolo Jr. used to trap Kami, after Goku tosses it to him. Tien also helps to evacuate their friends, creating a pit in the earth for them take shelter from one of Piccolo Jr.'s more devastating attacks.

When it looks like Goku has been beaten, with Piccolo Jr. close to finishing him off, Tien reluctantly accepts the order from Kami to kill the elderly guardian, thus also killing Piccolo Jr. He is stopped by Goku though, who evades the demon's onslaught and ends up defeating him with a surprise attack.

Dragon Ball Z

Saiyan Saga

Main article: Saiyan Saga

Tenshinhan taking on a Saibaiman.
Tenshinhan preparing for battle
Nappa severing Tenshinhan's arm.

Five years after the tournament, Tenshinhan learns that Goku has died in battle against an amazingly powerful warrior called Raditz, a Saiyan and Goku's brother. Even more disturbing is that two more Saiyans, both more powerful than Raditz, are on their way to Earth and will be there in about a year.

In the early days, the wild Launch developed a bit of an infatuation with Tien, and she continues to chase him wherever he goes. This could be one reason he chooses to move from place to place so frequently. Tenshinhan wastes no time, and is invited, along with Yamcha, Chiaotzu, Yajirobe and Krillin, to train at Kami's Lookout so they can aid Goku when he is wished back to life in a year, after he completes his training with King Kai.

When the Saiyans finally do arrive, the Z Warriors hold them off until Goku can arrive. Vegeta, deciding to toy with his opponents, has Nappa grow several Saibamen in the soil so that he can hold a small challenge. Knowing that they have to buy time, the Z Fighters agree to this, and Tien volunteers to go first. He manages to quickly defeat the vicious creature, causing Vegeta to destroy it for incompetence.

After all the Saibamen are killed, Nappa decides to enter the fray himself, taking on Tenshinhan as his first opponent. Tenshinhan is no match for the giant warrior, and has his left arm ripped off in a single hit. Immediately, Tenshinhan tries to use levitate to escape but is quickly smashed to the floor in the second hit. Seeing this, Chiaotzu sacrifices himself with a self destruction attack against Nappa, who remains unharmed and starts to fight with the now ally Piccolo and Goku's son Gohan. Tenshinhan, enraged by the death of Chiaotzu, puts all his remaining strength into one final Tri-beam through his remaining right hand, killing himself from exhaustion in the process. The attack manages to do serious damage to Nappa's armor, but does not seriously damage the Saiyan warrior. In the anime however, Nappa goes as far as to praise Tien's efforts, claiming that had his aim been better, it would have seriously injured him.

Namek Saga and Frieza Saga

Main articles: Namek Saga and Frieza Saga

Tenshinhan with Yamucha, Piccolo, and Chaozu shortly after arriving on North Kaio's World.

Tenshinhan was allowed to train on North Kaio's World in the Next World after he perished, as Goku had done earlier, because of the influence of Kami. Joining him were the other warriors who also perished in the battle against the Saiyans, Chiaotzu, Piccolo and Yamcha. On North Kaio's World, North Kaio told Goku that they had all crossed the Serpentine Road in a far shorter time than he had done and that they all had requested for tougher training than what Goku had received. [2]

Tien, along with Chiaotzu and Yamcha, remains on King Kai's planet and learns of everyone's (Goku, Vegeta, Krillin, Gohan, Dende and Piccolo fused with Nail) mighty struggle with the evil tyrant Frieza on the Planet Namek. He is eventually wished back to life a second time along with Chaiotzu by a wish made to Polunga. After returning to Earth, Tien and Chiaotzu go into solitude, training in the mountains.

Garlic Jr. Saga

Main article: Garlic Jr. Saga

For reasons unexplained, both Tien and Chiaotzu do not make their appearances in this saga. It can be assumed however that they were both also possessed by the Black Water Mist, and also changed back to their normal states by the Sacred Water like almost everybody else on Earth.

Trunks Saga

Main article: Trunks Saga

Tenshinhan and Chaozu during the Trunks Saga just prior to the arrival of Freeza and King Cold.

A year later, while Tien and Chiaotzu are training in the mountains, they are interrupted when they sense two powerful evil energies heading towards Earth. They then fly to the location of where the power is coming from. Both Tien and Chiaotzu are surprised to find Vegeta (who was somewhat reformed during the crisis on Namek and now resides on Earth with Bulma) and the other Z Fighters who inform them that the power they are detecting is Frieza's, who somehow survived Namek's destruction. When Frieza does land, he is quickly dispatched by an unknown mysterious youth (Future Trunks). Piccolo, overhearing the young Super Saiyan's private conversation with Goku, tells everyone the warning that two incredibly powerful Androids will attack in three years time.

Android Saga

Main article: Android Saga

Tenshinhan is helpless to defend himself as he is mercilessly choked by No. 17.
Tenshinhan after the Z Warriors are easily defeated by the Artificial Humans.

The three years soon pass and the Z Fighters head to the location where the Androids soon appear. Tien tells the other Z Fighters that he left Chiaotzu behind as he felt that even though they trained, he wouldn't have been able to keep up in the battle. Tien himself does not do any fighting until Android 16, Android 17, and Android 18 appear. He attacks Android 17, but is quickly over powered, and ends up being choked until he is dropped.

Imperfect Cell Saga and Perfect Cell Saga

Main articles: Imperfect Cell Saga and Perfect Cell Saga

Tenshinhan using the Tri-Beam to keep Cell down and away from No. 18.

When the Androids leave to continue their pursuit of Goku, who is recovering from a heart disease, Tenshinhan goes off with Chiaotzu to train and become powerful enough to help against this new threat. He was soon interrupted from this to lend his aid in hunting for the new menace, Cell.

Eventually, Tenshinhan caught up with Imperfect Cell and witnessed his battle against the combined force of Piccolo and No. 17. Imperfect Cell defeated Piccolo and absorbed No. 17 to become Semi-Perfect Cell. Semi-Perfect Cell then made his move to absorb No. 18 as well, but was held off by Tenshinhan, who used his new Neo Tri-Beam to hold Semi-Perfect Cell in place until Goku arrived and relieved the thoroughly drained Tenshinhan.

Cell Games Saga

Main article: Cell Games Saga

Tenshinhan battling against a Cell Junior.

When Perfect Cell declares his Cell Games, Tien decides to remain on the sidelines out of the fight, he is given the opportunity to go to the Room of Spirit and Time, but he declines the invitation stating he has no chance against Cell. He does however get thrown into the mix when Perfect Cell spawns seven Cell Jrs to torment the Z Fighters, in an effort to make Gohan angry. After a severe beating by the small creatures, he is saved by Gohan, who then goes on to destroy Perfect Cell.

Majin Buu Saga - Kid Buu Saga

Main articles: Majin Buu Saga, Fusion Saga, and Kid Buu Saga

Tenshinhan during the Majin Buu story arcs.
Tenshinhan being knocked out cold with a swift kick to the back by Super Boo's severed legs.

Seven years later, in the following Majin Boo Saga, Tenshinhan makes an appearance with Chiaotzu as their training in the mountains is interrupted when they both sense Goku transforming into his Super Saiyan 3 form.[3]

Tien later reappears alongside Chiaotzu whilst they're training in the mountains. Here, himself and Chiaotzu manage to evade being hit by Super Boo's Special Human Genocide Attack, which was used to exterminate the population of Earth. They then briefly examine the small craters left behind by Super Buu's attack. When Tien finally intervenes into the main battle, he saves Mr. Satan, Gohan, Dende and Bee from being killed by Super Buu (Gotenks Absorbed), but is dispatched after a single kick by Super Buu from behind.

When the Earth got destroyed by Kid Boo, Tenshinhan and Chaioztu are also killed in the process. Once everyone is revived by the Namek Dragon Balls, he and Chiaotzu later give their energy to Goku's Spirit Bomb so that he can kill Kid Boo. He is last seen at a party at Bulma's house.

Dragon Ball GT

For unexplained reasons, Tenshinhan has kept apart with the rest of the Z Warriors. It is often said that he leaves to go travel the world and train with Chiaotzu. In Dragon Ball GT, Tenshinhan only appears twice, once when the Earth is about to explode from the work of the Black Star Dragon Balls, and the other is when Goku passes by him in the final episode "Until We Meet Again".

Baby Saga

Tenshinhan was seen in "Piccolo's Decision" with Chaozu and among others.

Shadow Dragon Saga

The final scene of Chaozu and Tenshinhan in Dragon Ball GT.

Tenshinhan was finally seen in the last episode, "Until We Meet Again...", when Goku passed by with Shen Long as he and Chaozu trained under a waterfall.


Tenshinhan appeared in Dragon Ball: Mystical Adventure, Dragon Ball Z: Tree of Might, Dragon Ball Z: Bojack Unbound, Dragon Ball Z: The History of Trunks (in the opening prologue and credits), Dragon Ball Z: Bardock: The Father of Goku (in Bardock's visions of the future), and Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods.

Video games

Tenshinhan appeared in the following video games:

Anime filler

  • While searching for the Dragon Balls in the King Piccolo Saga, Tenshinhan, Chiaotzu and Master Roshi retrieve the first one from a greedy pirate bear. When getting the second ball, they arrive at a near-vacated town. When Tenshinhan enters the house where the Dragon Ball is indicated to be he finds himself face-to-face with an ex-fighter whom he savagely beat at a tournament several years ago. At first the man's wife calls the police, believing Tenshinhan is responsible for the series of murders being committed by King Piccolo's son Tambourine. Master Roshi is able to prove Tenshinhan's innocence, however, and the police soon leave. Not trusting Tenshinhan, the man wearily predicts that Tenshinhan will proceed to tear his humble house apart in his search for the object. Instead, Tenshinhan grovels at the man's feet, begging him for forgiveness for his previous cruel actions and for the Dragon Ball which can help stop the current crisis. Surprised by Tenshinhan's humbleness, the man grants his forgiveness and gives Tenshinhan the Dragon Ball. They then locate the third ball in the Arctic from an icecap and the fourth ball from a mountainside.
  • While fighting against Drum, Tenshinhan puts up a better fight against the demon and manages to knock him down enough for him to attack King Piccolo. When King Piccolo starts to leave during their battle, Tenshinhan attempts to use the Evil Containment Wave on him, but ends up ensnaring Drum instead when he realizes what Tien is attempting to do. King Piccolo then uses a finger blast to destroy the jar Tien was going to use to seal Drum, allowing Drum to remain free.
  • On his way to train with Karin, Tenshinhan, Chiaotzu, Yamcha and Krillin rescue a village from an active volcano.
  • While training with Kami, Tenshinhan and the others enter the Pendulum Room, which allows them to virtually battle Saiyans from the past.
  • In the Namek saga, on King Kai's planet, Tien along with Chiaotzu and Yamcha participate in a 3 versus 1 sparring match against Piccolo.
  • In the Frieza Saga, while training with King Kai, the recently killed members of the Ginyu Force show up on the planet, battling against Tenshinhan, Yamcha, and Chiaotzu. They eventually beat them and send them flying back down to the depths of Hell. Tenshinhan himself takes on both Burter and Jeice, at first splitting in two to fight them individually.
  • In the Cell Games, after Perfect Cell returns as Super Perfect Cell, Tenshinhan, along with the other Z Fighters, blast Super Perfect Cell in the back to try and help Gohan.
  • At the end of the Kid Boo Saga he goes to a party at Bulma's house.


Tenshinhan firing the Neo Tri-Beam at Future Cell.
Tenshinhan using the Solar Flare.
  • Bukujutsu – It is the capability to fly by using the Ki. At first this technique was used only by Tenshinhan and Chaozu, then it was learnt also by all the Z Warriors except Yajirobe and Master Roshi.
  • Dodon Ray – The signature technique of the Crane School. It is an energy beam shot from a finger, which is more powerful than a normal Kamehameha, yet does not need as much as charging time as the Kamehameha. Another version of the Dodon Ray technique is the Neo Dodon Ray. It is basically a larger, more powerful version of the Dodon Ray. The technique appears in Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit and Dragon Ball: Raging Blast.
  • Eye Laser – Tenshinhan fires a straight white beam from his third eye. He uses it in the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament against Goku.
  • Evil Containment Wave – Secret technique invented by Lord Mutaito (Master Roshi and Master Shen's teacher) to defeat King Piccolo. He manages to use a magic wind to propel the demon into a denshi jar, trapping him at the cost of the user's life.
  • Four Witches Technique – This is Tenshinhan's special technique: he uses this ability to sprout two extra arms from the back and shoulders so he obtains four arms to fight his opponent. Tenshinhan performs this attack at the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament and it allows him to immobilize Goku's arms and legs.
  • Fusion Dance – Tenshinhan is able to use the fusion dance with Yamucha to form Tiencha in Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2.
  • Kamehameha – An attack invented by Master Roshi. At first, the user cups both of their hands to concentrate the energy. They then yell Kamehameha in intervals as Ka - me - ha - me - ha!, charge it up, and puts them on the side of their body, and finally unleashes a powerful Ki Blast.
  • Kamehameha Hanekaeshi – Kamehameha Hanekaeshi (かめはめ波 跳ね返し, Kamehameha Hanekaeshi)
  • Ki Blast – The most basic form of energy wave.
  • Ki Blast Cannon – A square blast of energy used by Tien against Goku during the 23 World Martial Arts Tournament. In the Budokai video game series, the Ki Blast Cannon is fired in the same fashion as the Tri-Beam.
  • Kiai Keshi – The Kiai Keshi (気合 消し, Kiai Keshi) is a technique used by Tenshinhan against Tao Pai Pai at the 23rd Tenkaichi Tournament. It consists of a yell that he uses to reject the less powerful attacks.
  • Kikoho – Tenshinhan's special technique. He unites his hands at the tips of the fingers and aims at his target between his fingers and his thumbs. Then he shoots a powerful energy blast to hit it. This is a very dangerous attack, because it uses up most of user's health so this one has to control how much energy he's putting into the blast in order to not over use it. Later, Tenshinhan makes this attack more powerful and calls it the Neo Tri-Beam. It is also called the Ki Blast Cannon in Budokai Tenkaichi video games.
  • Rapid Velocity Technique – Tenshinhan swings his arms so fast they appear to be windmills on his shoulder and pummels his opponent too many times to count. Tenshinhan uses this at the 22nd Tenkaichi Tournament against Goku. It is named Machine Gun Punch/Machine Gun Zuki in Dragon Ball: Daizenshu ?, Gakuryuken in Dragon Ball Z: Ultimate Battle 22, and Machinegun Fist in the Budokai video game series.
  • Mimicry – Both Chaozu and Tenshinhan have shown the ability to copy moves after seeing them only once. Tenshinhan states this after using his Kamehameha after copying it from Yamcha. He also uses it to copy Master Roshi's Evil Containment Wave to use on King Piccolo.
  • Multi-Form – Tenshinhan splits himself into multiple identical copies. The only weakness of this technique is that the copies split his original energy.
  • Shin Kikoho – Another variation of the Tri-Beam, which also negatively affects Tenshinhan's life force.
  • Solar Flare – This technique is used the first time by Tien during the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament against Jackie Chun. He called it "Solar Flare of Crane School" because at that time he was Master Shen's pupil. The user of this technique puts his hands over the face and generates a powerful flash of light that temporarily blinds anyone whose eyes come in contact with it. Solar Flare is performed by other Z warriors and Cell as well.
  • Spirit Burst – Tenshinhan experiences a sharp increase in power and speed.
  • Tamashii no Kikoho – An enhanced Tri-Beam which uses Tenshinhan's life energy.
  • Telepathy – Tenshinhan is able to speak with his targets mentally.
  • Zanzo-ken – This is a technique that consists of disappearing from a place, leaving a shadow of oneself, for a short period of time in the original position and causing the shadow image effect. The enemy is deceived into thinking that his opponent is still there and this one can quickly move to another spot close by and attack him unexpectedly. Zanzo-ken was first used by Master Roshi but soon learned by most major characters in the Dragon Ball series. Most of them manage to leave more than one image. Goku is able to perform even 7/8 shadows.


Major battles

  • Tenshinhan vs. Mercenary Tao (Seen in a flashback)
  • Tenshinhan vs. Yamcha
  • Tenshinhan vs. Jackie Chun (Master Roshi)
  • Tenshinhan vs. Goku (Kid)
  • Tenshinhan vs. Drum
  • Tenshinhan vs. King Piccolo
  • Tenshinhan vs. Cyborg Tao
  • Tenshinhan vs. Goku
  • Tenshinhan, Chaozu, Krillin, and Yamcha vs. Scarface and Shorty
  • Tenshinhan vs. Saibaman
  • Tenshinhan, Piccolo, Krillin, Chaozu, and Gohan vs. Nappa
  • Tenshinhan, Chaozu, and Yamucha vs. Piccolo
  • Tenshinhan vs. Burter and Jeice
  • Tenshinhan, Piccolo, Future Trunks, and Vegeta vs. Android 17 and 18
  • Tenshinhan vs. Semi-Perfect Cell
  • Tenshinhan, Krillin, Goku, Vegeta, Future Trunks, Piccolo, and Yamcha vs. Cell Juniors
  • Tenshinhan, Piccolo, Yamcha, Krillin, Vegeta, and Gohan vs. Super Perfect Cell
  • Tenshinhan vs. Super Boo w/Gotenks absorbed

Film battles

  • Tenshinhan and Chaozu vs. Rasin and Lakasei (Movie 3)
  • Tenshinhan, Chaozu, Kuririn, Yamucha, and Piccolo vs. Tullece (Movie 3)
  • Tenshinhan vs. Future Trunks (Base, Super Saiyan) (Movie 9)
  • Tenshinhan, Yamucha, and Gohan vs. Bido, Bujin, and Zangya (Movie 9)

Voice actors


  • Prior to beginning his training with North Kaio, Tenshinhan has difficulty making North Kaio laugh during the prerequisite joke-telling test. In order to finally deliver a successful joke, Tenshinhan must literally power up and use the Multi-Form Technique as he aggressively declares, "You can tune a piano, but you can't tune a (tuna) fish."
  • Tenshinhan is one of the most notable characters who does not appear in Yo! Son Goku and His Friends Return!!. This was done because his original voice actor, Hirotaka Suzuoki, had died 2 years earlier, although this can easily be explained story-wise by Tenshinhan and Chaozu's reclusive nature. He is briefly mentioned when Gotenks utilizes his Volleyball Attack technique in battle against Aka. They were included in the manga adaptation.
  • The third eye is from becoming enlightened. When Toriyama began creating the Dragon Ball series, he used Wu Cheng'en's Journey to the West as a prototype for his own work. Tenshinhan's three-eyed physical characteristic resembles the story character Erlang Shen, and both are warriors who were originally adversaries of the main character[citation needed]. The Daizenshū mentions that Tenshinhan is an alien and belongs to the race of Three Eyes (Triclops), though this may not necessarily be true. This was referenced in one of the Dragon Ball: Raging Blast what-if stories where after defeating Tenshinhan for the title of "strongest human", Kuririn asks if he is even from Earth. Technically, he is a Triclops, which simply means a three-eyed creature though this has never been depicted as being indicative of another alien race and is more likely just a rare trait in a Human. Furthermore, Piccolo refers to Tenshinhan as an Earthling in Dragon Ball Kai. Dragon Ball Z: The Legacy of Goku II states that Tenshinhan's third eye was achieved through deep meditation when the player scans Tenshinhan with the Scouter.
  • In the English dub, Tenshinhan is the only character, aside from Goku (Son), and Bulma's (Brief) family, to have an official last name stated.
  • He enjoys eating jiaozi/gyouza (Chaozu gets his name from this food) and shumai (Shuu and Mai are named after this).
  • The scar on Tenshinhan's chest is from his fight against Tao in the 23rd Tenkaichi Tournament. Despite Senzu being able to heal any injuries (even holes in the body, e.g. Yamucha's impalement), Tenshinhan's scars never heal, even after his being revived.
  • During his last appearance in Dragon Ball GT, despite being a man at the age of 57, Tenshinhan does not have any physical differences from his younger years. This may be because of his super-Human traits, however, Yamucha and Kuririn do have age-related differences, therefore this occurrence is never explained.
  • Tenshinhan supposedly has hair as Crane Hermit states that he shaves his head.
  • Tenshinhan is usually seen training near a waterfall.
  • After his revival, from being revived from his battles against Nappa, he is rarely seen with Chaozu, e.g. his battles against the Cell Juniors and Super Boo (Gotenks absorbed).
  • Tenshinhan is arguably the strongest full-blooded Human on Planet Earth in Dragon Ball Z. While it has been shown that he is stronger than Yamucha, it has never been further explained who is the strongest out of Tenshinhan and Kuririn after Tenshinhan receives North Kaio's training and Kuririn receives the Elder Namek's unlock potential boost. The Top Earthling Tournament in Raging Blast seems to favor Kuririn as the stronger Human.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Kanzentai, DragonBall Daizenshuu 7 – DragonBall Encyclopedia
  2. Dragon Ball Z manga Vol. 06, p. 119, North Kaio states to Goku that Chaozu, Piccolo, Tenshinhan, and Yamcha all want tougher training than he had. ISBN 1569319359
  3. Dragon Ball Z manga Vol. 24, p. 25 ISBN 1421502739