One Piece has been going on strong for 23 years now. Within that time frame, the series became the best selling-manga and best-selling comic series of all time. The One Piece anime TV series has aired over 900 episodes and released 14 theatrical films; all of which are broadcasted worldwide. Even as One Piece is getting closer to its conclusion, a live-action Netflix series is on its way, showing One Piece is here to stay.
However, any series that has gone on as long as One Piece will attract a fan theory or two. Especially when it’s populated by so many mysterious characters, strange worlds, and unbelievable treasures. How did Blackbeard gain the power of two Devil Fruits? What’s with that giant straw hat at Mary Geoise? What is the true purpose of those Ancient Weapons? And most important of all: What is One Piece? The One Piece fandom have boiled down 15 of the hottest questions within the series' strange, yet, whimsical universe and answered them with compelling evidence that spans over two decades.
The Monkey D. Dragon Theory: A Past Marine?
Was the “World’s Worst Criminal” a past admiral for the Marines? According to Gobee129 and MythicalZoan, there’s strong evidence to suggest Monkey D. Dragon was, at one point in his life, an admiral working for the World Government.
Oda is known for using myths, legends, and fables as inspiration for his storylines. (Elbaf, the kingdom of giants, is “fable” spelled backward). Chinese mythology believes in the four seas: North, South, East, and West. They are commonly represented by four colors: Yellow, Blue, White, and Red. Over time, the four seas have also been identified by animals: a Monkey, a Bird, a Dragon, and a Dog. Spot the connection?
A north sea with a yellow monkey = Admiral Kizaru. A south sea with a bluebird = Admiral Aokiji. A west sea with a red dog = Admiral Akainu.
Which leaves the east sea (“Shiroryu” in Chinese) with Admiral White Dragon.
There’s another popular myth that supports this theory. There was a king who had four followers: One that was shaped like a bird (Dragoon), monkey (Kizaru), dog (Akainu), and pheasant (Aokiji). After realizing how evil the king was, the bird decided to leave his side, but not without telling his comrades the truth. However, the brid’s efforts were in vain as the dog was too loyal, the monkey too stupid, and the pheasant too lazy to leave the king. Again, this connects to the admirals in color, animal, and personality. All this suggests Dragon was an admiral who left his position after realizing the corruption of the World Government.3,916356Mind blown?
The Inherited Will Theory: Fusing All Seas Into One Ocean?Photo: Viz Media
A popular theory in the One Piece community is The Inherited Will theory by Ashura_KingFisher, which may reveal the true meaning of One Piece. According to the author, One Piece commonly follows a structure of a past figure failing to complete his dream/desire/promise, which goes unfulfilled for years, until someone from the future inherits this will and completes it. Or, as Gol D. Roger puts it in chapter 100, "Men’s Dream. The Flow of Time. Inherited Will. As long as people continue to pursue the meaning of Freedom, these things will never cease to be!"
The theory states Roger inherited the will to unite the four seas into one from the Ancient Kingdom that ruled during “The Void Century,” before they were theoretically defeated by the World Government. The "One Piece" project involved the destruction of the Red Line and Grand Line to unite the seas into one big ocean; using Ancient Weapons (forbidden by the World Government) to create the legendary All Blue. Due to Roger's illness, however, he couldn't complete the One Piece project. Therefore, Roger ushered in The Golden Age of Piracy, so that another pirate (Luffy) could inherit his will and fuse the seas into one.
This theory is backed up by chapter 610, as the mermaid Madam Shyarly envisioned Luffy destroying Fish-Man Island, which would happen if the Redline were destroyed. Redline's destruction, however, would signal a new era of human, fish-men, and merfolk coexisting above the sea.1,870205Mind blown?
The Devil Fruit Number Theory: A New Devil Fruit User For the Straw Hats?
Fans have often speculated how many members the Straw Hat Pirates will have by the end of One Piece, but is there a way to narrow down who exactly will join Luffy and his crew?
While Reddit user Panino87 deserves credit for highlighting the theory, the real tip of the hat belongs to One Piece creator Eiichiro Oda for teasing the validation of it. In Oda's question-and-answer column for One Piece, called SBS Volume 59, a fan wrote: "D: Odacchi! I noticed an amazing thing!!! It is that if you show the Straw Hat Devil Fruit users in numbers, it will be the numbers from 1~10!!"
The fan is talking about how the Japanese names for the Devil Fruits used by the Straw Hat Pirates go from 1-10. For example, the Japanese name of Luffy's Devil Fruit, Gomu Gomu no Mi, is 5 (Go) and 6 (mu). "Go" is the Sino-Japanese number for 5, while "Mu" is the Native-Japanese Number. The rest goes like this: Chopper→Hito Hito (22.214.171.124), Robin→Hana Hana (126.96.36.199.), Brook→Yomi Yomi (188.8.131.52.). All that leaves is a Devil Fruit user that spells "2.9."
How did Oda respond? "WHAAAAAT?! (shock) Gosh that surprised me! Why was I surprised?! NO COMMENTTTTTTT!!!!!!!! NEXT!!"
Fun fact: 56 (Gomu) + 110 (Hito) + 87 (Hana) + 43 (Yomi) + 29 (Nikyu) = 325. Another way of saying 325 is San (3) Ni (2) Go(5), which could be referencing the Thousand Sunny, the second ship for the Straw Hat Pirates following the Going Merry.2,361280Mind blown?
The Shanks Theory: Keeper Of The Balance?
Many fans believe the end of One Piece will, one way or another, involve the end of "Red-Haired" Shanks the pirate. Nessos, however, believes the infamous captain of the Red Haired Pirate Crew will play a more significant role in the story than going down in a blaze of glory.
Nessos believes Shanks has been guarding the true history of The Void Century; a secret he most likely discovered during his time in the Roger Pirates. And according to the theory, the true history is an answer no one wants to hear. If the true history of the world broke out, it could cause a catastrophic war. Shanks’ role is to watch over Laugh Tale in the New World, to make sure no one deciphers the Poneglyphs that contain the forbidden secrets of The Void Century.
This would explain why Gorosei wants the New World to be ruled over by pirate outlaws; not by the World Government. It also answers why Shanks is talking with Gorosei about “a certain pirate.” Nesso believes the pirate in question is Luffy and that Shanks will have a fateful confrontation with him the minute he uncovers the true history.1,402164Mind blown?