Warning: contains spoilers for One-Punch Man chapter 167!
One of the greatest debates in manga history centers around One-Punch Man's Saitama. Whether the character exists solely as an unbeatable gag hero or if he is meant to have defined strengths and limits has been up in the air for years… until now.
One-Punch Man’s chapter 167 reaches a point that fans weren’t sure would ever come at any point in the series, as Saitama is taking a fight seriously. After narrowly escaping the destruction of Earth thanks to some mysterious figures appearing behind him, Earth’s number-one hero Blast manages to teleport both Saitama and Garou to one of the moons of Jupiter. There, Saitama declares that he can finally let loose at full power against someone who can take what he has to dish out.SCREENRANT VIDEO OF THE DAY
Related: Saitama Just Gave "One-Punch Man" A Whole New Meaning
The main reason so many fans thought Saitama was a gag character is because there was an assumption that Saitama - being “One-Punch Man” - only needed one blow to deal with any serious threat, no matter how powerful they might be. The series often plays this for a joke, undercutting the usual tension that other stories would take seriously. However, the fight with Garou clearly demonstrates this is not the case, as Saitama is fully admitting he wants to use his full power to beat Garou to a pulp. Even then, Saitama still doesn’t defeat Garou in a single punch, and not even hundreds of Serious punches seem to put any real damage on Garou. It’s clear both characters are just getting started as neither of them have taken any lasting damage from the fight.
Saitama’s true power seems to lie somewhere in the multi-galaxy level of destructive capabilities, at least judging from the black hole created from the impact of his punch colliding with Garou’s. The series is doing an excellent job thus far using creative methods to display the level of power Saitama considers going “all out.” With the power to grab hyperspace warp gates and obliterate an entire section of the visible universe, Saitama’s true power is incredible. That being said, the fact that Saitama even has a level of power he considers “all out” implies that he does in fact have some kind of limit when it comes to his own strength. His full power isn’t just some abstract, infinite amount of strength.
Saitama’s full power is likely going to be expanded upon in subsequent chapters of One-Punch Man as the fight with Garou continues to unfold, however the series has officially confirmed that there are some limits on what he can do, settling this hotly contested fan question.