Video version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBb5YPIpiZ4
So currently at the moment the chaotic situation taking place in the New World has had the three Supernovas that defeated the Yonko at Wano face against the three remaining major powers of the One Piece world. On one hand we have the Straw Hats at Egghead ready to face the major forces of the Marines and Government, whereas on the other two islands Kid and Law are fighting two Yonko respectively.
On Law’s end, we don’t know how his fight against Blackbeard will end up yet, as we haven’t gotten a direct update since Chapter 1064, but my best guess is that in a similar scenario, Blackbeard will end up winning, especially since Law is so reliant on his devil fruit powers to fight and Blackbeard can neutralize them fairly easily. Though Blackbeard may see reason to capture Law instead of just defeating him, as that would result in the three core members of the Rocky Port incident being in one place alongside the captured Koby.
This is further hinted at by the fact that Garp fighting Blackbeard seems like a follow up to that fight, and might even bring some interesting dynamics if Oda chooses to since Law is Sengoku’s grandkid after all. But while we don’t know for sure who won yet, if Blackbeard were to win against Law, then that would put him at a big advantage, as he would gain the Road Poneglyphs fof Zou and Wano. We don’t know however if the Straw Hats shared their Whole Cake Island poneglyph with Law or not, which I think they likely didn’t, but it’s possible Kuzan and Augur may have gotten a rubbing themselves during the cover story either way.
There’s also the fact that now a ship of the Blackbeard Pirates has pulled up on Egghead, which is a massive deal!! However, I don’t see this ship having Blackbeard on it or it being after Luffy specifically, as I doubt he or anyone else would’ve been able to go all the way from Winner Island to Egghead within the same day. I think more likely is the fact that they may have overheard about the Government wanting to erase Vegapunk, so Blackbeard may have sent some forces to kidnap Vegapunk or at least steal some of his technology before the Government did. If not Teach himself though, I wonder just who exactly could be on that ship. It can’t be Burgess, Augur, or Doc Q, but it could be any of the remaining Titanic Captains such as Shilliew, Lafitte, Devon, Pizarro, Vasco Shot or Sanjuan Wolf. However, a particularly interesting option would be Kuzan himself, as that would mean that we are quite literally having a repeat of the Ohara Incident, with Kuzan now perhaps being able to change history for the better this time. A potential clash between Kizaru and Kuzan could be particularly interesting as well.
However, on the complete other end instead we have the Kid Pirates vs the Red-Haired Pirates, which ended swiftly within this chapter. Not only did Shanks quickly defeat Kid through using Kamusari, but then later Dorry and Brogy used their iconic Hakoku attack, the same attack they used to defeat the Sea King Island Eater at Little Garden, to completely destroy the Victoria Punk and eradicate the Kid Pirates. Fittingly enough, they state how if you point a gun at someone, then you should be ready to bet your life on it, which is almost identical to what Shanks said in Chapter 1 to Higuma, which makes for a fantastic parallel.
Another really neat parallel is how Heat, one of the Kid Pirates, made fun of Sanji for begging to Robin for help in Onigashima, but can instead be found this chapter beginning to Shanks to spare them.
This defeat results in the Kid Pirates handing over their Road Poneglyphs to Shanks, which means that he now has two Road Poneglyphs, the one from Wano that Law shared with Kid, and the one from Whole Cake Island that Kid stole from one of Big Mom’s commanders. This puts Shanks at two Road Poneglyphs, though we don’t know if he has any others under his belt already, as maybe there could be one hidden in Elbaf or somewhere he knows if he has connections to the Fire Scar man. However, we know at least that neither he nor anyone else aside from Luffy and Law have the Zou Road Poneglyph, since it was stated by Pedro only Luffy and Law were shown that Poneglyph since the time Roger came to Zou.
So currently the Zou Road Poneglyph is in possession of Luffy and Law, with Blackbeard potentially being able to steal it from him. The Whole Cake Island Poneglyph is in the possession of Luffy and now Shanks too, though Blackbeard may have stolen it from Whole Cake Island as well. And the Wano Road Poneglyph is in the possession of Luffy, Shanks, and Law, with Blackbeard potentially stealing that one from Law as well. The final one though, as always, is still an enigma. Though more importantly, we should also remember that every crew needs a method to read the Poneglyphs. Luffy has Robin, and Blackbeard has Pudding, so I wonder what Shanks could use to read the Road Poneglyphs.
SHANKS’S TRUE PLAN
Let’s talk a bit more about Shanks himself though. Because as Oda teased within the Film RED booklet, he stated that while Uta had her own vision of the “New Era” and so does Luffy, inheriting Uta’s dream in that regard, Shanks also has his own vision of the New Era, though Oda specifically censored this bit and left it ambiguous. It’s possible that him leaving Uta behind at Elegia may not have been just a choice motivated to further her career, but may have also been for his plan of the New Era. I mean hey, if my theory that the One Piece is Binks’s Sake may prove to bear fruit, then it would make sense that Shanks wanted to raise someone who could share a song with the entire world.
But similarly, even when it comes to Luffy himself, he too may have been in a sense a pawn in Shanks’s schemes. That doesn’t necessarily mean that Shanks doesn’t love or care about Luffy, because I think at this point it’s clear that he legitimately is kind at heart, something we see this chapter with how he shelters pirates from many crews in his massive fleet despite their weaknesses, to allow them to thrive in the New World.
But he has certainly been nudging Luffy in the right direction all these years, even giving him a hand in Wano by stopping Ryokugyu, to help him achieve his position of Pirate King. And the grim reality we see here in Elbaf is that Luffy was not the only one. In fact we see a giant kid, who is probably around Luffy’s age given how giants age more slowly, who similarly wanted to join Shanks in a very similar fashion to Luffy. Which suggests the idea that Shanks may have raised several children all across the world with the intent purpose of building up a new generation for the New Era, and that Luffy was the only successful one among these experiments. I don’t think that Shanks is fundamentally evil at his core like I said, but he has certainly been pulling the strings in some way, and now he legitimately intends to stand as a rival to Luffy by seriously aiming to attain the One Piece himself. This all could be to ultimately honor the promise he made with Luffy that he may one day be surpassed by him, but I wonder if there is more to it within Shanks’s grand plan for the New Era.
It’s interesting also to think about Shanks’s constant worry over Blackbeard across the entire series, with this chapter telling us that Shanks went to Wano because he worried Blackbeard wanted to ambush the Supernovas there. It’s seeming increasingly likely, though obviously not yet confirmed, that the certain pirate Shanks wanted to talk to the Gorosei could’ve been Blackbeard. Even in the pre-timeskip, Shanks warned Whitebeard that Blackbeard left a scar on his face, during a battle when he wasn’t caught off guard or holding back.
As Shanks put it, Blackbeard has always hidden his true strength, he’s lurked in the shadows so that he can take the world by surprise when they expect it less. Shanks literally told the great pirate Whitebeard that Blackbeard could one day steal his place, something that did end up happening, so if Shanks, who was this strong against Kid, was this afraid of Blackbeard, then you can only imagine what Blackbeard’s real strength really is like. Though I wonder at this point if Oda would really set up Blackbeard killing Shanks considering that if Blackbeard defeats Law, he wouldn’t have any use for Shanks’s Road Poneglyhps.
However, this whole thing also ties into Shanks’s own past and lineage, because as Film RED has shown, Shanks actually originated from God Valley. Roger found a one year old Shanks within a treasure chest that he pillaged from the Rocks Pirates after leaving the island. This was paralleled when Shanks ended up finding a two year old Uta inside a treasure chest he also pillaged from some pirates, with him even wondering in the film if this encounter was a twist of fate.
Some may jump to the conclusion that Shanks was related to someone in the Rocks, but given the parallel the simplest answer was that he was kidnapped from among the Celestial Dragons on the island. This is further motivated by the fact that in the Film the Gorosei mention how Uta being Shanks’s blood related daughter, though they weren’t aware of the fact she was adopted, makes her part of the Figarland Family. The way this is worded in Japanese strongly implies that this family is one of the twenty founding families that form the Celestial Dragons. It’s important to note this is only implied and is in no way canonically confirmed yet, but the large part of the Japanese fandom has already taken it as strongly implied that Figarland Shanks was actually born as a Celestial Dragon in God Valley. The implications of this are no doubt massive, especially on a symbolic level, since the Celestial Dragons represent the ultimate negative force for this world, the Devils that rose to become Gods, making Shanks a false God among them, even if he most likely is considered a fallen one like Doflamingo.
But what makes all of this particularly odd is exactly what Shanks does this chapter. He shows incredible prowess with his haki abilities, particularly with his incredibly keen advanced observation haki when he uses future sight. The Film RED booklet also commented how Shanks’s conqueror’s haki is so powerful he can even kill the observation haki of other users, blocking them from using future sight and the like. But then he finishes Kid off with a move called “Kamusari”. This is a move that was originally used by Shanks’s former captain, Gol D. Roger, which now Shanks has inherited. But the important thing is the etymology of this word, because “Kamusari” is often translated to “Divine Departure”, though a simpler more literal translation is “Avoiding the Gods”, literally composed by the Kanji for “gods” and “staying away”. And in this context, the Gods are most likely referring to the Celestial Dragons, who Roger and many others oppose, being a member of the D. Clan, the so-considered “natural enemies of the gods”, the enemies of the Celestial Dragons and nature itself.
This is particularly odd because if Shanks himself is a Celestial Dragon, then this attack is one that pits him as an enemy of those gods, on the complete opposite end of that group of people. Which it would make sense, since Shanks literally departed from the gods. I think it’s evident at this point that Shanks doesn’t have an allegiance to them anymore, but I still can’t help but wonder if there is more to this. After all, Oda has confirmed in his Film RED commentary that the Figarland Family will be further explained in the future, so Shanks will no doubt play a big role in the story to come, and his heritage will hold some key clues to the mysteries of the world.
THE FINAL WAR OF ONE PIECE
I feel that now, better than ever, we can get a good glimpse at the final structure of One Piece. Because the three clashes we are seeing happen over these three islands are fundamentally setting up the three final antagonists of One Piece. On one hand here at Elbaf we have Shanks, who Luffy will have to fight to prove that he can surpass him, on the other on Winner we have Blackbeard, who has been set up as the opposite of Luffy across the entire series, and on Egghead we have the Government itself, symbolized by Imu-sama directly.
I’ve seen a lot of people argue that all these opponents will be fought at different points, but I personally see it increasingly more likely that these plot points will rather converge into one massive battle royale that will constitute the final conflict of the series, leading to the clash between these four forces of good and evil to bring a massive change in the world. Oda is already setting up all of these plot lines at the same time, alongside all the other forces like the Revolutionaries, Weevil, Vivi and Morgans, Neo Mads, Cross Guild, and so many others, to result in this gigantic climax to the series where they all converge into the greatest war this manga has ever seen. And the beginning of it all is right here, at Egghead Island in what will be the historic Egghead Incident!!
Hi Arthur, been a massive fan of your work for years. I found an incredible interesting theory floating in the japan YouTube community and wanted your thoughts on it. It revolves around something called “pole shift” which i havent seen much mention on in the English community.
Here’s the link to the video: https://youtu.be/udFInWtZOK4
This chapter secret is so good.. Peak chapter with peak review *feel blessed
great review, artur! thank you.
One thing that I noticed in the chapter, is one specific background ship. One of the ships of the fleet that we see has an eye patch on the jolly roger. The fact of an eye patch should be worth remembering.
I love your website
I think it’s worth nothing that Shanks might already know where the One Piece due to him being on the Pirate King ship, he says “claim the One Piece” not find it. Similar to how Rayleigh says they were too early. It might seems like Shanks think it’s time for them to claim the One Piece now, and it might also have something to do with Luffy’s awakening.
Since we now know most of BB pirates are still with him, even more unsure which is showing up here 🤔
But yeah, shanks really needed to finally get a feat to establish himself after years of hype, and a ohko on kid and his crew was so goddamn badass haha, kid never stood a chance.
BB definitely beat Law, but yeah he’s a D and has much more significance to the story.
We’ve known Garp is in the top 3 strongest non df users, next to Rayleigh and Shanks, so he’s such a massive hard counter to BB haha.
So much is happening in these chapters. I feel like Shanks is going to be setting this up and fight Luffy. If Luffy really wants to find the One Piece, Shanks will be an obstacle for him.