From the moment you saw the opening theme song to Dragon Ball Z, you were waiting for the moment promised, when Goku finally went Super Saiyan. And when his hair finally ignited and his eyes changed to a tint of baby blue, right before the longest five-minute fight in the entire history of the universe, you pumped your prepubescent fists in the air because it was all worth it. That moment is undoubtedly one of the most satisfying in the series, which makes it kind of a bummer when you consider it wasn't a big deal at all.
Even though the legendary Super Saiyan transformation is talked about in hushed tones for much of the series, for the Saiyan race it should never have been a major achievement. Hell, even a couple of first graders pulled it off.
How is that, anyway?
Think back to before Frieza Alderaan'd the planet Vegeta. The Saiyans were a super-race of cosmic dicks, traveling the galaxy and dominating every planet they could. They were kind of like spacefaring Spartans -- any personal qualities that didn't involve strength and arrogance were frowned upon. It seemd to work out for them for a while, because during the Saiyan reign the people were never really challenged. Saiyans rarely had to really push themselves emotionally or physically, so it's no wonder nobody went Super.
But because Goku is raised around humans, he learns their compassion and eventually changes forms after a traumatic loss. Gohan, Trunks and Goten are all able to do this much earlier, potentially because they're half-human and therefore more in touch with their emotions. Really though, Vegeta proves that any Saiyan has the capacity to go Super. If Nappa had stuck around longer, he'd probably have sported a pointy gold mustache sooner or later. And you can bet that if humans had the ability to go Super Saiyan, pretty much everyone on the street would look like a buff Guy Fieri.
But humans don't have that ability. So you can stop screaming and clenching your fists in your room now.
No one is going to argue that Krillin is the strongest fighter in Dragon Ball Z. That's not what we're talking about here. Everyone knows that Goku's ingrown toenail has a higher power level than his bald buddy. No, we're talking about skill level. Despite overwhelming odds, Krillin stuck in there for most of Dragon Ball Z. He was hanging with the Saiyans, Frieza, the Androids and even a bit of Cell. Something had to keep him in the fight, and it sure wasn't his aerodynamic headbutts.
Krillin is severely underpowered compared to pretty much everyone else, but that's the whole point. Because he was so weak, Krillin had to learn to use what he had to its fullest potential. Whereas Goku and Vegeta got nice power boosts after every battle because they were born Saiyans, Krillin had to learn to survive in a world that outclassed him by miles. Somehow, he managed to stay relevant at a fraction of the power of those around him.
Imagine what it'd be like if Krillin was imbued with the power of Goku. He'd easily eviscerate every other fighter in the universe, simply because he's had to train harder and smarter than anyone else in the series. People make fun of Krillin for dying a lot, but that's because he's always in the fight, whether or not he's guaranteed Cell meat. Let's face it, guys: Yamcha is the real Krillin here.