Recap / One Piece Return To Water Seven Arc

Short Summary

With the battle against CP9 won, albeit at the cost of a Straw Hat member, the Straw Hats make their way back to Water 7 to rest after the whole ordeal. During so, some figures of Luffy's past come to visit. Franky unveils a new surprise for the crew for their heroics as well as asked to joined them. And a event on another island plants the seeds that'll shake the world.

Main Summary

Return to Water 7 has the following tropes:

  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Usopp when it becomes clear what he needs to do to atone for his earlier actions.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The anime shows where the Marine photographer got some of the photos for the bounty posters of the Straw Hats, such as Nami, and his hilarious attempts to photo Sanji.
  • Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole: Subverted. The anime mentioned that Coby and Helmeppo went though Reverse Mountain to get to the Grand Line, when in this arc, it's revealed they did so with the Seastone-layer below the Marine ships they traveled in to traverse the Calm Belt. Coby, in the anime explained the Reverse Mountain thing was a cover story.
  • Affably Evil: Marshall D. Teach aka Blackbeard. He knew Ace was there to kill him, but still referred to him as "Commander", and offered to have him join his crew.
  • Angrish: What Sanji was reduced to when he saw that his bounty poster looked like an ugly mock-up of his actual appearance.
  • Badass Boast:
    Shanks: I see...(unsheathes sword) Well then, no-one can stop the coming of this rampaging era!
    Whitebeard: Not enough to scare me, (grabs his bisento, and prepare to attack Shanks) I am WHITEBEARD!
  • Badass Grandpa: Vice-Admiral Monkey D. Garp, none other than Luffy's grandfather, who throws cannonballs like baseball pitches (and they're actually more powerful that way then if they'd been fired with a cannon).
  • Balance of Power: Garp explains who The Four Emperors are, and how they fit in the Three Great Powers, which is also formally introduced in his exposition. Also, mentioned is how the idea of Shanks allying with Whitebeard could upset the balance, and by Robin is how Dragon's actions deliberately upset the world's balance.
  • Berserk Button: Telling him what to do, especially when your two generations younger than him, seems to be Whitebeard's.
    • Sanji looking at, or the mere mention of his bounty poster.
    • Teach threatening to kill Luffy as part of his plan to become Pirate King. Ace was not amused.
    • Garp took Luffy's farewell in the Thousand Sunny, mid-battle, as a boast, and got very irate.
  • Big Bad: Err, Garp, sort of. Aokiji is still around as well.
    • Big Bad Ensemble: Blackbeard is not too far from the Straw Hats either, and it's only luck that he didn't catch up with them.
  • Blade Lock: Shanks and Whitebeard do this after the former's request annoys the latter enough. The force emitted by that single parried strike cleaves the clouds in the sky in half.
  • Blue with Shock: When Robin plants her Devil Fruit power arms on Franky's legs, this happens to him. He knows what's about to happen.
  • Book Ends: Fittingly, given the title of the arc: Usopp returns to the crew, Aokiji makes peace with Robin, while the disciple of the Pirate King's shipwright, joins the crew to see his own ship reach the end of the Grand Line with the future Pirate King.
  • Breather Episode: A well deserved on for the crew after going through all the craziness since they've arrived at Water 7. It's not all that major of an arc, just some comedy, closure, revelations and set up for a later arc down the line.
  • Brick Joke: When Paulie revealed who tried to assassinate Iceberg during the train ride to his Galley-La teammates, they assumed before that two people, Michael and Hoichael, were somehow involved. This arc reveals that they're two kids known for causing mischief around Water 7, namely trying to hassle Zoro who had (yet again) gotten lost. It goes about as well as you'd expect.
  • Call-Back: All of the people that are encountered in Luffy's adventure so far across the Grand Line are seen reacting to the new bounties the Straw Hats received, including Princess Vivi (who shows no hard feelings that Nico Robin is among them), Smoker and Tashigi of the Marines, and even his father, Dragon. Two of them from his earliest adventures encounter him again.
    • Sanji finally receives a bounty..but it's a mock-up that looks nothing like him.
    • Shanks was told by Beckman that the WG wouldn't like the idea of him meeting with Whitebeard, which they didn't, as they sent a fleet to serve as a blockade to the Red-Hair Pirates' ship, which was easily penetrated by them. Apparently, Shanks wanted to talk to Whitebeard about Ace and Teach.
  • Casting a Shadow/Dark Is Evil: Teach's power: The Dark-Dark Fruit (Yami-Yami no Mi). Teach implied out of all the fruits it had the literal power of the Devil himself.
    Teach: Ace, you're a man of fire, right? Well, I AM...DARKNESS!
  • Casual Danger Dialog: The crew bring back Usopp into the crew, and name their new ship, all while they're battling Vice-Admiral Garp.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: It turns out Luffy's grandfather is actually Vice-Admiral Garp.
    • The mayor of town Luffy grew up in mentions Dadan, who apparently raised him.
  • Cool Boat: The Thousand Sunny, hands down. It's even powered by cola! And can catapult itself to travel long distances!
  • Cool Shades: Helmeppo now wears them.
  • Easily Forgiven: Zigzagged with Usopp. The rest of the crew had forgiven him already and would have brought him back into the fold if Zoro hadn't put his foot down and insisted that Usopp acknowledge what he did was wrong and apologize for it. Even then, Zoro was still willing to tank cannonballs thrown by Vice Admiral Garp while waiting for Usopp to work up the nerve to do so. After he does and is back mere moments in the crew, you wouldn't know he and Luffy had a fight. Even Nami notices it.
  • Epic Flail: Garp throws a giant cannonball (even larger than the battleship!) on a chain, towards the Thousand Sunny.
  • Flash Step: Apparently both Coby and Helmeppo learned Soru since their last encounter with Luffy and Zoro.
  • Filler Arc: A few anime only episodes of the crew milling around the city as their new ship is being built.
  • Foreshadowing: When Kokoro tells the Straw Hats about a sketch of sea that is haunted and has haunted ships, Luffy eagerly asks if they will see skeletons move. This comes true when they meet future crewmate Brook, who is a living skeleton.
    • Coby tells Luffy of the second half of the Grand Line, called "the New World".
    • Shanks warns Whitebeard that Blackbeard may come to steal his Emperor title. Can you guess what happens?
    • Shanks also makes mention of the "rampaging era" coming.
    • The results of the fight between Ace and Blackbeard are said to be "the trigger of a great event, on the Grand Line".
  • Friendly Enemy: Zoro muses that by meeting Coby again as a Marine, Luffy's "made another great enemy".
    • Attempted by Shanks with Whitebeard, but it apparently didn't work out so well with him soon getting annoyed by him, as he asked him to reconsider his order.
  • Graceful Loser: Garp witnesses the Thousand Sunny get away, and is more proud of his grandson during his escape, than irritated that he couldn't capture a world-famous pirate crew.
  • Gravity Master: Teach.
  • Groin Attack: Robin uses this to convince Franky to join them, much to the shock and horror of her male crewmates.
  • Hero Antagonist: Garp, and his Marine Branch, which includes Coby and Helmeppo.
  • Honour Before Reason: Whitebeard refuses to heed Shanks' warning to call back Ace from the order to kill Marshall D. Teach, since Teach broke an iron-clad rule of his crew: not to kill your own crew-mates, and believes that Thatch's soul won't rest until it's done.
  • Identity Concealment Disposal: Vice Admiral Garp finally removes his dog mask.
  • It Runs in the Family: Nami remarks this of the Monkey family, noticing the egocentrism of both Luffy and Garp. Apparently, they both have narcolepsy too.
  • Inelegant Blubbering: Usopp, and eventually Luffy, when the former finally apologises for his actions.
  • Knight Templar Parent: Whitebeard, and how.
  • La Résistance: Dragon, Luffy's father, is revealed to be the leader of Revolutionary Army opposing the World Government. Notably, the Revolutionaries are well aware of who really defeated Crocodile, instead of what the Government told the world.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Subverted with Garp, who finally unmasks himself here to reveal he's Luffy's grandfather. Played straight when he tells Luffy that Dragon, a famous revolutionary, is his father.
  • Made of Iron: Both Ace and Teach, taking severe punishment during their battle.
  • Man of Kryptonite: What the Dark-Dark Fruit made Teach, as Ace is horrified to find out.
  • Manly Tears: Franky.
  • Moment of Weakness: Subverted in this case as Zoro stops Luffy from going to get Usopp upon hearing he wants to come back to the crew. Zoro makes it a point that regardless if it was right or not, Usopp disobeyed captain's orders and if he wants to come back he has to do so on Luffy's terms, not the other way around. Luffy going to apologize to Usopp would make him seem weak in Zoro's eyes and Zoro even threatens to leave himself if that happens.
  • Mood Whiplash: The arc seems light at first, with the Straw Hats getting a new ship, partying on their victory, getting a new crewmember, and old ones rejoining, with the world finally learning about their antics; But then it later turns pretty dark when the story turns to Teach and what Ace confronting him means.
  • Naked People Are Funny: Franky spends quite a lot of time without any pants on, after the Franky Family steals it.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Sanji never misses a chance to defend Nami, especially if it means going against Zoro. But when Nami criticises Zoro for being too harsh when he demands that Usopp apologise to Luffy before letting him rejoin them, Sanji actually sides with Zoro and even says that he's right.
  • Ordered Apology: Inverted as Zoro demands that Luffy waits for Usopp to apologize after the latter quit the crew. Could be seen as a double subversion because Usopp's apology only happened because Zoro was so adamant about it in the first place. Though not to say Zoro wasn't wrong, they may be a close pirate crew, but they still are a crew and must act like one if they wish to survive the Grand Line any further.
  • Parental Hypocrisy: Garp clobbers Luffy for sleeping on him...despite nodding off himself.
  • Pet the Dog: Aokiji catches up with Robin and explains that he thought that Enies Lobby would put an end to the misery in her life, and never expected the Straw Hats to go so far for her, and asks her if she's genuinely happy with the crew. When Robin replies she is, Aokiji then leaves telling her Ohara isn't completely destroyed yet suggesting that it lives on through her.
  • The Reveal: Shanks was once part of Gold Roger's crew, along with Buggy.
    • Teach was the one who gave him the scars across his eye.
  • Running Gag: Luffy and Zoro not noticing Helmeppo, even after he reformed.
    • Everyone not realising the figurehead of the new ship Franky built is supposed to invoke the image of a lion, not a sunflower. Which led to Iceburg christening it, the Thousand Sunny. Which in turn, everyone likes the name so much, they ignore Franky's ideas for the name.
  • Sand In My Eyes: Franky cries Manly Tears when he says goodbye to his True Companions, using Robin's earlier Groin Attack as an excuse for his tears.
  • Scenery Censor: Parodied when the Straw Hats and Franky Family steal Franky's speedo to force him to join the Straw Hats.
  • Share the Male Pain: Everyone who sees it reacts this way to Robin's Dos Fleur Grab on Franky.
    Luffy: Stop it, Robin! I still want him to be a man when he joins our crew!
    Robin: As pirates faced with a treasure, why should we let go without good reason?
  • She Is All Grown Up: Coby has grown up quite nicely from this to this.
  • Sincerity Mode: Usopp's apology.
  • There Was a Door: Invoked with Garp, as he felt it was cooler to burst through the wall to hit Luffy. At least he repairs the wall afterwards.
  • To Be a Master: Coby announces his dream is to be an Admiral.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Coby and Helmeppo.
  • Tough Love: The Straw Hats to Usopp, until he apologizes for his actions.
  • We Can Rule Together: Blackbeard asks Ace that instead of him trying to kill him, he can join his crew as he becomes Pirate King. Ace wasn't interested, but Blackbeard did no favors to himself by mentioning he plans to go after Luffy.