Discover the origin of Buyon's name, from Derek Padula, the Dragon Ball Scholar.
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Buyon is a giant pink bipedal monster with a body made of rubbery flab. He fights Gokū on the 5th floor of Massuru Tawā (マッスルタワー).
Buyon’s name is derived from the Japanese onomatopoeia of buyobuyo (ブヨブヨ), which means “soft and flabby.” This is an adjective and sound effect for squishy, bouncy, and rubbery things, as well as body fat. Buyon (ブヨン, essentially, “Flab Monster”), is the embodiment of what his name represents.
I theorize that the ‘n’ (ン) sound in Buyon’s name is a result of Toriyama’s love for kaijū (怪獣, “strange creature”) films, where the kaijū often have names that end with an ‘n.’ For example, Gaigan (ガイガン), Baragon (バラゴン), Guiron (ギロン), Radon (ラドン), and Toriyama’s own kaijū, Giran (ギラン). Toriyama follows this nomenclature, with buyo-n (ブヨン).
During their battle, every time Goku strikes Buyon, his attacks bounce off his body and it makes the sound of ‘buyon.’ In the manga, this sound effect is written in a round bubble-style font in order to give the otherwise sharp katakana text a soft and bouncy aesthetic. And when Gokū fires his kamehameha at Buyon, even the sound effect vibrates along with Buyon’s body.
For more on the culture that inspired Buyon, including his connection to a Hollywood film, read Dragon Ball Culture Volume 4, available in paperback, hardback, and ebook.
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