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    Fish-Man Island Saga 

Return to Sabaody Arc

  • It's amazing how infamous the crew really has become. Their exploits have made them pirates talked about on a legendary level, and they've left an impression on the New World before they even entered it. While usually rookies aren't taken seriously in the second half of the Grand Line, several of the pirates and Marines there speak of them as experienced New World pirates already.
    • The Straw Hats' reputation in the New World is much more impressive when one considers that there are only 9 of them. Where most of the more famous pirates have crews that number in the hundreds or even thousands, they stand out for being so feared despite amounting to 9 people.
  • Post-timeskip, Usopp got ten times more badass. When the fake Straw Hats are harassing Nami, he shoots them with a "Pop Green", a tiny seed which instantly grows into a man-eating plant. Then, when he finally shows up in the panel, he is absolutely ripped from his training.
  • Post-timeskip, Nami is drinking in a bar where the fake Straw Hats are hanging out, treating the impostors as if they weren't even there. She doesn't even flinch when the fake Name holds a gun to her head. After Usopp shows up and they leave the bar, Nami leaves behind a gaggle of weather balls, which turn into a thunderstorm, filling the entire bar with electricity.
  • The first time we saw post-Time Skip Zoro, it's after he effortlessly bisects a ship in half, while it's underwater no less. An amazing Call-Back to the Baratie arc, where Mihawk did the same thing.
  • We all knew it was going to happen, but still, it was great to see Luffy showing off his new skills by taking out the impostors in one go. Right after dodging a bullet at point blank range. Then again, a bullet wouldn't have hurt Luffy anyway because of his rubber powers; he probably just did it to avoid attention.
    • 600 leaves with a tease that he might be doing even more of this in the next chapter, to the same guys.
  • In 601, Psyche! Luffy doesn't do anything to them. It's the Pacifistas who finish them off. Then Luffy curbstomps a Pacifista, the same thing that took the entire crew to beat the first time. And with one punch.
    • What's doubly awesome about this is how Luffy treats it. The Pacifista tries to shoot him with a laser. Luffy quips "Slow." while barely moving his head (showing he's gotten Observation Haki down), activates Gear Second just by flexing his arm (greater control of Gear Second in that he can pump up just part of his body instead of pumping his whole body using his legs like before), and comes down on the Pacifista without missing a beat. Bad. Ass.
    • Here's another thing; those beams that the Pacifista use? They're based on Kizaru's ability. The same Kizaru who wiped the floor with the crew on their first encounter.
    • Remember the Pacifista that were beaten by Luffy, Zoro, and Sanji? They were the same ones the Straw Hats encountered before Kuma appeared.
    • Even more badass on TV. Luffy punches the Pacifista so hard, he makes a crater under it!
  • Post time skip, Sanji breaks a Pacifista's neck with a single kick. The last time he tried that he only managed to break his own leg. Damn.
    • Judging by their bickering, both Zoro and Sanji were strong enough to destroy a Pacifista single-handedly and with one hit.
  • Post time-skip: Brook turned what could have been a lifetime in captivity as a sideshow freak into a successful 2 year music career as BROOK, KING OF SOUL MUSIC!
  • And the very next chapter: The Marines have figured out Brook's the same one on his wanted poster and a Straw Hat and want him arrested. His managers sold him out because he was going to make this his last concert, ruining them financially, so they want to take him down with them. Unafraid (for good reason, bullets aren't the best choice of weapon against him), he announces to the world that Luffy is alive and plays one more song. The fans are so elated that they restrain the Marines so he can play. The whole crowd cheers with him: "NEW WORLD!"
  • Give Sentoumaru some credit; post-timeskip, he responds to the fake Luffy's claim to be the real Straw Hat Luffy by slamming his axe on his head with enough force to bury him half-way into the ground. And why? Because the real Luffy isn't a piece of trash like this guy. He then has the Pacifista reveal the impostor's true identity, destroying what little cred he had left. Yet another example of how even the villains are cool in this series.
  • Fake Sogeking attacking Caribou when he tries to kill Drip (Fake Sanji) For a person who was perfectly willing to imitate a crew to intimidate others and use other pirates to reach Raftel, and who had been established as a coward that was pretty awesome.
  • In 602; everyone the Straw hats were with over their two years of training helps the Straw hats escape in their own way. Points awarded to Heracles-n for summoning giant bugs from nowhere to take on Marines, and to Silvers Rayleigh for style — he drew a line in the ground with his sword and politely advised the Marines not to step over it. Oh, and Hancock once again outright defies the Marines... and promptly gets away with it, again.
    • In addition, there's the nostalgic, amazing, brilliant, awesome of the crew finally reuniting and setting sail once more.

Fish-Man Island Arc

  • ELEPHANT GUN. An armament Haki-infused Gear Third technique that Luffy uses to knock out a Kraken.
    • Pfft. Is that all? The following chapters show that Luffy has tamed it. Davy Jones, eat your heart.
  • Chapter 617. Zoro takes on Hody Jones, a Great White Shark Fish-man with enough brute strength to crush down a whole wall with his grip. What's so special you ask? He's fighting underwater, where Hody's strength is ten times stronger.
    • Even better, in Chapter 618, Zoro owns Hody Jones. Underwater. With one slash.
    • And the damage caused by that one slash was so severe that Hody has been OD'ing on Energy Steroids just to keep standing.
  • Chapter 618. Luffy's tied up and there's a crazy man gunning towards him. Luffy one-shots him and then knocks out a giant with one punch. Luffy, who's tied up, manages to lodge the Flying Dutchman captain Vander Decken in the ground in one single go. Then he deals with Decken's Giant Mook (who's probably one of the hugest creatures in this setting) by punching out his front tooth with a Gear Second attack.
  • Chapter 624. Say what you will about Arlong, but for all that he's evil, it takes a special kind of badass to walk out of any level of Impel Down looking just flat out ticked.
  • Princes Fukaboshi, Ryuboshi and Manboshi and their massive Oarfish utterly curbstomping at least seven sea monsters the size of small towns. Proving Asskicking Equals Authority and that while the princes all have their quirks, they kept their promise to their mom and are their father's sons. It's small wonder Hody and his crew had to resort to energy steroids to beat them.
  • We all knew it was coming, but after Hody gloats about his evil schemes, poised to slice off King Neptune's head, Luffy exits from Megalo's mouth and gives Hody a Gear Second kick right in the solar plexus.
    • And after that, the citizens of Fish-Man Island are confused as to where the Straw Hats' allegiances lie. Luffy simply answers:
      Luffy: Whether we're friend or foe... is up to you to decide!
  • Then Hody tries to send his army of 100,000 men at Luffy's mere crew of ten... and Luffy drops 50,000 of them with one burst of Haki.
    • Made all the more awesome by Zoro's reaction: "That's what I expect from a guy who calls himself my Captain."
      • You can watch and see for yourselves just how badass and awesome it was here.
    • The truly best part of this? Luffy didn't need to even do that. This was effectively him punishing Hody for daring to lay claim to his title.
      "You're Hody, right? I guess I have to kick your ass. You can become king of whatever you want in any country. But there can be only one King of the Pirates!"
  • Chapter 634: Luffy reclaims Surume, the Kraken, through the Power of Friendship. Then sitting on its back laughing as it destroys Hody's men.
  • Chapter 635: Chopper is commanding a tank. Your argument is irrelevant.
  • When Luffy finally starts fighting Hody, it's an utter Curb-Stomp Battle. Luffy just kicks his ass with almost no real effort. This is after Hody got that huge drug induced power boost.
  • Chapter 644: Gomu Gomu no... RED HAWK! The kanji that make up the attack name are the exact same ones as Ace's Fire Fist.
  • Chapter 645: Say it with me, Elephant Gatling!
  • Chapter 647: Luffy is so goddamn badass that he wins the respect of the motherfucking SEA KINGS, the most powerful sea monsters in the world.
  • Chapter 651: Luffy ate several tons of candy at the banquet not knowing that it was the monthly fee Fish-Man Island paid to Big Mom (who is homicidal enough to burn an island into the ground because they didn't give her candy) for defending it from other pirates. But when she hears the news and threatens to demolish Fish-Man Island Luffy first tries to bribe her with the treasure they got back from Caribou (knowing that Nami might rip off his balls for it), and when that fails he PERSONALLY takes the blame for the whole incident, and challenges BIG MOM (who's one of the Four Emperors and probably on the same level as Shanks and the late Whitebeard) saying he will go to the New World, kick her ass, AND PROTECT FISH-MAN ISLAND HIMSELF AFTERWARDS BY MAKING IT HIS OWN TURF. Flashforward to Totto Land Arc, and Luffy doesn't seem that capable.... but the spirit is what counts.
  • Zoro taking the entire Ryugu Palace hostages, and improvisation upon the situation. And being completely nonchalant about it. To one of the three princes.
    • It wasn't just Zoro, it was Usopp, Nami and Brook as well! Fact of the matter is, the Straw Hats can conquer entire castles by accident!
    • It's noted that the Kid Pirates destroyed two of Big Mam's ships. Just to reiterate, they attacked and destroyed two ships belonging to one of the Four Emperors, and this one is known for razing countries if slighted. This being the second example of such an attack, clearly the Supernovas are either fearless or insane, possibly both.
    • Caribou, after getting beaten up by Luffy, realizes that Pekoms now has the treasure he stole. He foolishly attacks Pekoms, only to learn very quickly that the lion-man is not to be trifled with. Like all his battles thus far, Caribou goes down like a chump.
  • Chapter 635: Zoro creates a tornado of blades that one mook likens to a reaper's scythe. When asked how long the tornado will continue to chase them, this is his response:
    "To the ends of Hell."
  • In Chapter 642, Zoro cuts Hyouzou's swords in half. Lengthwise.
    Zoro: You want to kill me? You can't even kill my boredom!
    • And in Chapter 646 he proceeds to one-shot the deadly poisonous merman, with but what looks to be a variation of a simple move, while quoting a line from his battle with Mihawk (that's what the whole frog thing was about).
  • In Chapter 605, Sanji used Diable Jambe (which, to be clear, lights his legs on fire) UNDERWATER to deal massive damage to a ship-eating KRAKEN! Bien Cuit: Grill Shot! He also runs fast enough that he is said to be as fast as a Fish-man. Sanji originally had to spin so fast that his leg glows red hot, here he is running UNDERWATER so fast that his leg lights on FIRE. This series throws physics into the sun but now Sanji is just seeing what he can get away with.
  • Chapter 635: Running from the Okama's didn't just allow Sanji to run underwater, it also allowed him to run IN THE SKY! Also counts as a Funny moment when you think about it; when Sanji was cornered by the Okamas, he wanted to escape so badly that he spontaneously learned to run UP.
  • Chapter 646: Just by remembering his two years in Hell, Sanji can heat up enough to set Wadatsumi aflame just with a kick.
  • Chapter 635: Usopp drives Franky's new Dino Tank into battle. Yes, Usopp, the incredibly accurate sharpshooter, is driving a tank.
  • Chapter 636: Apparently Usopp's arsenal of Pop Greens includes bamboo plants that grow fast enough to stab/impale enemies, and EXPLODING SKULL GRASS.
  • Chapter 643: Usopp's fighting against Daruma, with what seems like no effect, until he suddenly says: "I've just finished laying out my trap. 1... 2... 3... In three moves you will be sniped by me. IT'S OVER!" When he gets called out on this, he replies with this truly magnificent reply:
    Usopp: Dang... I've totally lost my edge. In the past, I'd have told a huge whopper... but now I can actually make it happen!
  • And in Chapter 646, he makes good on his claim.
  • Post-timeskip, Nami's Mirage Tempo can now turn her invisible. Making her an even better thief than before.
  • In Chapter 636, she effortlessly and calmly dodges an attack from behind before shooting the guy at point blank with a concentrated wind blast.
    • And in Chapter 640 she takes down even more people with what seems to be a thundercloud melee weapon!
  • Chopper protects the Thousand Sunny from a Kraken attack with his Guard Point form!
    • KUNG-FU POINT.
  • Chapter 635: Chopper commanding Franky's huge Dino Tank. And then we get a little 'raaaawwwwrr', which is mostly interpreted as 'Drive me closer, I want to hit them with my hooves'.
  • Chapter 636: Chopper reveals that all but one of his seven transformations can be activated without a Rumble Ball. He's also able to go after Tunnel King Daruma on even footing.
    • This Badass Boast in the same chapter:
      "These aren't coral! They're my antlers!. Oh, and I'm a cocky monster."
  • Chapter 645: Chopper can now control Monster Point!
  • Robin finally gets a chance to display a small piece of her training in 629. She can create clones of herself, and move fast enough to intercept Jimbei's and Luffy's attacks and ask them to stop.
    • Albeit, given the nature of the Flower-Flower Fruit, the clones are likely just able to sprout up wherever Robin chooses to make them (within her range). Still a very fast reaction either way.
  • Robin takes Curb-Stomp Battle to a literal extreme in 635. She uses her powers to create gigantic legs to stomp (it's actually the name of the attack) her opponents into the ground.
    • Later, she frees all the New Fish-Man Pirates' human slaves at once using her powers, then proceeds to one-hit KO the cocky slavedriver who actually thought a net could defeat a Straw Hat Pirate.
    • Before the Time Skip, Robin's level of control topped out at Cien: one hundred. Now? She's up to Mil: one thousand of those "helping hands" at once.
  • Franky has a nose-button that controls his hair, mechanical hands inside his large ones, and a ROCKET LAUNCHER.
    • Three words: FRANKY NIPPLE LIGHTS!
    • Not only does he have smaller hands inside his large ones but he also has a tool box inside one of his arms. It was around this point that Franky's new look became awesome.
  • Franky using the Sunny to Gaon Cannon Hody's crew!
  • In Chapter 635, Franky reveals TWO new creations for the soldier dock system. #4 is a Steel Rhino Bike, while the new number 5 is a FREAKIN DINO TANK!
    • And they combine into a giant robot!
      • This is made even more awesome for Oda because it's revealed that this is a result of the special alloy that Wapol invented and the page on the cover for that chapter was Drum Kingdom.
  • How does Franky start his fight with Ikaros Much? He's just searching for a strong enemy in his giant mech and he randomly punches Ikaros.
  • In Chapter 646 Franky reveals his ultimate weapon. A FRICKIN' LASER BEAM!
  • It's revealed in Chapter 629 that Brook can separate his soul from his body and move around like a ghost!
  • You know how Brook previously said that music is his ally during the concert? Well, he can now use it to make people think they're at a festival, allowing him to destroy them without their knowledge. Even better, unlike his humming move, which is just distracting, he actually convinces his victims to fire their cannons into the air harmlessly rather than at their intended target.
  • In Chapter 643, Brook reveals the true power of the Yomi Yomi Fruit, the power to be effectively immortal by manipulating the energy of the soul and also channel Ghostly Chill through his body and sword. An undead 3-meter-tall skeleton with lightning-fast swordplay and the chill of the grave. Talk about Creepy Awesome.
  • This Badass Boast in 645, when the ark Noah is threatening to crush the entire island:
    Our captain, "Straw Hat Luffy", is the man who will one day become Pirate King! If we truly believe that, what is there that could possibly frighten us?
  • After Zeo brags about his "Instant Death" Radius, Brook does his thing.
    • Leading up to that, when Zeo was making light of death, Brook gets pissed, and responds by absolutely owning Zeo. Thus leading up to the above CMOA.
  • Chapter 633. The crew and the ship get a Big Damn Heroes moment. Franky flies the ship and lands it right in the middle of the square, using the Gaon Cannon to break up the assembled New Fish-Man Pirates. Luffy is regurgitated by Megalo and takes out Hody. Nami appears out of nowhere, having stolen back the letter the queen worked so hard to get, Robin frees all the prisoners and Neptune's whale takes them to safety, which is all topped off by the entire crew (Zoro and co have freed themselves) lined up and ready to kick ass. Beatdowns will ensue.
  • Chapter 636. Luffy, after promising to protect Surume's brothers whom Hody threatened to kill if he does not listen, calmly walks towards Hody as two New Fish-Man Pirates officers attack him simultaneously. Unfazed by the assault he simply keeps walking. Zoro and Sanji jump in to protect their captain, each respectively taking down an officer in moments. It becomes an even greater Moment of Awesome after Luffy disappears and suddenly appears again, knocking down Hody yet again with a single kick. His gaze is filled with fury as he is fully aware of how painful losing a brother can be. The best part? He's not even using Gear Second.]
  • Chapter 646 can be seen as a single huge moment of awesome composed by the many, above-mentioned moments that merge in a gargantuan one. Is also the chapter with the greatest number of double pages in a row so far.
  • New Villain Vander Decken IX gets one. He's a Fish-man with a fruit ability... that involves throwing things at a target with perfect accuracy, regardless of distance. His current target is the Mermaid Princess. So what does he go and do with this ability? Apart from throwing weapons at the love of his life, he allies with the other Fish-man villain of the arc, Hody (who is Arlong without the latter's only redeeming quality: being A Father to His Men), and then throws Hody's strongarmed human pirate captives as human artillery to invade the Palace and open it from the inside.
    • Chapter 632 shows just how powerful his ability is. He "throws" the Noah, a gigantic arc, towards Shirahoshi. It's half the size of Fish-Man Island.
  • In Arlong's flashback: After Tiger's infamous death he went in a berserk rage and it took Vice Admiral Borsalino (the future Kizaru) himself to knock him down. He surely has balls.
  • Chapter 637: Shirahoshi is committing a Heroic Sacrifice in order to stop a colossal arc from destroying the island.
  • Chapter 638: Hody Jones' trident meets Decken's innards.
  • Chapter 639. Jimbei does a roundhouse kick that would make Chuck Norris proud. It effortlessly deflects the fist of a giant.
    • Quickly followed by Sanji bashing Wadatsumi's skull with a kick and joining forces with Jimbei to take down the colossus.
  • Chapter 650: Aokiji, the only Admiral in the Marines who exercised moral justice, fought against Akainu, arguably the strongest and most ruthless man in the Marines, for ten days. And when he lost, not wanting to be Sakazuki's underling, he LEFT THE MARINES.
    • Later on, we get to see the island where those two fought. Half of it is perpetually on fire, the other half frozen solid. Their battle was so intense it permanently altered the climate.
  • Shanks gets a sort of hypothetical moment of awesome for the Fish-Man Island Arc. Remember that burst of Haki Luffy used to knock out 50,000 guys? Word of God says that, had Shanks done that instead, he would've knocked out everyone, up to and including Hody Jones himself. When you can stop the Big Bad just by being in his general vicinity, you have indeed Awesomeness Is a Force.
  • Neptune: "Merman Combat... ULTRAMARINE!!!"
  • Queen Otohime. Slapping an adult, large Fish-man in submission? Seen a thousand times. Doing that when you have brittle bones and a frail body? Now, that, is something.
    • Even better when the people of Ryuugu kingdom stops supporting her cause after Tiger's death, she recovers from her Heroic BSoD by getting motherless drunk and calling them all cowards and tossing a Rousing Speech via broadcast system.
    • Not only did Otohime convince the Sun Pirates to spare the Celestial Dragon that they had once been enslaved to, she went with the Dragon to Mariejois and convinced the Celestial Dragons, the most tyrannical and villainous nobles to ever be depicted, to sign a peace treaty with Fish-Man Island!! She is definitely one of the most badass Proper Lady ever!
    • It looks like Shirahoshi takes after her mother, seeing as she kept the fact that Hody Jones was her mother's killer secret because she was afraid that if people learned about it, they'd get angry at Hody, and it would break her final promise with her mother, which is "to not bear any ill will to the assassin".
  • The Three Princes when they charge into the Plaza King Neptune is being held in. Most of Neptune's Army has been stomped by the Sea Beasts (who've been given the strength drugs). These guys? These guys take out all of them. While giving a speech.
  • Jimbei has one when the now-monster Hody Jones attempts to kill the gigantic mermaid princess Shirahoshi with one of his water shots, which can go as far as the edge of the island. Jimbei blocks it with one of his own.
    Jimbei: I don't pretend to know where you got your power... but your amateur Fish-man Karate pales in front of mine.
  • First the citizens in the square in Chapter 642, and then all the rest in Chapter 644 decide to stay. Live, or die, they will share the same fate as the Straw Hats. That takes guts.
  • Chapter 646: Jimbei hit the now colossal Wadatsumi so hard that the blow came out the other side. He's the size of a freaking palace and Jimbei manages to puncture him on the opposite end.
  • Chapter 647: Shirahoshi successfully summons the Sea Kings to stop Noah. She even gets in the way of Luffy's Elephant Gatling to stop his assault.
  • Chapter 648: Jimbei giving blood to Luffy in full defiance of Fish-Man Island's laws. When pointed out, he has this to say.
    Jimbei: I'm a pirate.
    • In the same chapter, it is revealed that Gold Roger could also understand Sea Kings.

    Dressrosa Saga 

Punk Hazard Arc

  • There is a nice one for Luffy in Chapter 661. Not that he does something, but when Brownbeard finally realizes who he is, he and his centaur lackeys shat their collective pants. It really shows how infamous Luffy has become.
    • Becomes even more obvious when many underworld brokers showed utter shock that Caesar had managed to catch him along with Robin, Law, and Smoker. It seems Luffy left an impression on the New World before he actually entered it.
  • Then, in Chapter 667, Luffy shows off a new move that enables him to absorb an enemy's attack and return it with twice the power.
  • Chapter 670, Luffy continues to show off his Haki skills by effortlessly grabbing Smoker's arm and pinning him to the ground, the same way Smoker stopped him waaaay back in Loguetown. Granted, Law's ability switched Smoker and Tashigi's bodies, and he was really fighting Tashigi. But it shows growth.
  • Then in the next chapter, he begins his fight with Caesar, a Logia type, and utterly stomps him, at least until Caesar pulled a sneak attack by sucking out all the oxygen around Luffy.
  • Chapter 678, Gum Gum UFO. That is all.
  • Chapter 689: After Caesar Clown boasts about he's being protected by too many big names of the New World (Doflamingo, and by extension, one of the Four Emperors among others) for Luffy to do a thing, Luffy punches him square in the face and sends him flying, saying he's already taken on guys like this many times.
  • Chapter 692: Grizzly. Magnum. Luffy hits Caesar, who is powered up with Shinokuni, with an Armament Haki-charged Bazooka that blows him through the lab walls. Take in account that Shinokuni petrifies alive whoever gets in contact with it. Luffy No Sold it.
  • Chapter 696 reveals the rest of the discussion between him and Law where their alliance was formed: Luffy, with a cheerful smile, announced his intend to defeat all of the Four Emperors. He had asked which one Law was going up against, but the only thing that mattered to him was that Shanks wasn't the first to fall.
  • Chapter 656: ZORO DECAPITATES A DRAGON!
    • Fridge Brilliance sets in when you realize it's this feat that made Ryuuma, who's sort of like a prototype of him, legendary. Then again, Zoro beat Ryuuma as a zombie back in Thriller Bark; this event just cements the fact that Zoro's surpassing Ryuuma's legend.
  • Chapter 669: Zoro cuts a mountaintop in half with one hand, effortlessly, while half asleep.
  • Chapter 678: Zoro's short but poignant words to Luffy before he heads off to fight Caesar
    Pull it together, from here on out it's the New World!
  • Chapter 687: Tashigi insists that Zoro refuses to fight women at full strength even against a Logia Devil Fruit user and taking over his fight with Monet. When Monet gets the upper hand, Zoro nicks Monet across the cheek to get her attention and warns her he is going to cut her. His killing aura is so great the previously fearless Monet is frozen in place while Zoro proceeds to cutting Monet in half without using Haki. This terrifies Monet to the point that her Logia powers won't work and she can't pull herself back to together again.
  • 680: Sanji saves the chapter's Damsel in Distress, Tashigi, by kicking a Vice-Admiral. In the face.
  • In 661, Usopp manages to keep BOTH Luffy and Robin afloat in freezing water while Zoro goes to work on a group of sharks.
  • In 692, Usopp knocks out some of Caesar's mooks, followed by this line, which reflects on Usopp's growth:
    Usopp: That's what you clowns get for putting up a fight! You want another blast from my ultimate slingshot, Grown-Up Black Kabuto?!!
    • But it gets better... one of his victims is Caesar Clown himself, who he brings down by shooting a Seastone chain at his neck as he boasts about his logia powers.
  • Awesome implications for Nami come when Sanji, after being body-swapped with her by Trafalgar Law, tries to perform the Blue Walk in her body, wondering if her muscles will be strong enough to actually perform the technique, and they are.
  • In 695, Nami takes down two of Doflamingo's strongest assassins by using a homing lightning to bring them down.
  • Franky fights Baby 5 and Buffalo in General Franky for two chapters, without getting a single scratch from their attacks.
    • And it gets better. The General Franky can use the Gaon Cannon, as Baby 5 and Buffalo find out the hard way.
  • When Brook saves Luffy's group from the centaur patrol on Punk Hazard by freezing the barrels of their guns, causing them to blow up.
  • Chapter 654: In the last two pages, we have this. Straw Hats surfacing into the New World.
    Usopp: what awful weather!!
    Brook: Yohoho~~ Stormy skies!!
    Robin: Gales of powerful wind!
    Franky: Fierce waters below!!
    Nami: We're far off the needle's course!!
    Chopper: I can see seas of red!!
    Sanji: A surging ocean of fire!!
    Zoro: It's like the entrance to hell.
    Luffy: BRING IT ON!!!!
    • Really, the best part about this exchange is that most of them are smiling when they say this.
  • Chapter 679: Zoro, Brook, and their latest ally Kin'emon as the Three Musketeers (as Usopp puts it).
  • Chapter 682: Brook, Nami, Usopp, Robin, and Kin'emon take down a smaller dragon.
  • Chapter 686: The Straw Hats' fight with Monet. With Tashigi stepping in as well to team up with Zoro at the end of the chapter.
  • Caesar Clown, in his battle against Luffy: His poisonous gas didn't work, and Luffy managed to dodge his explosions. His answer? Stop playing mister Nice Guy and removing all the oxygen around Luffy, knocking him unconscious.
  • Vergo's establishing moment, specifically almost killing Law by squashing his very heart and bitch-slapping him with a bamboo cane when he doesn't call him "Vergo-San".
  • Doflamingo's first appearance post Time Skip. He's just casually spending time at a resort when Baby 5 attacks him, but he effortlessly dodges all of her attacks all while having a casual conversation. Then he controls her to point a gun at her head without even looking. Before this happens, Doflamingo takes a rocket directly to the face, sending him onto his back but otherwise not harming him in the slightest. Later on, we see Doflamingo No-Sell Luffy's Gear Second; said Gear Second has caused monumental damage to previous foes. Did Doflamingo have a strange power to stop the rocket from Baby 5? Nope. Doflamingo is that much of a beast.
    • Doflamingo's actions after hearing that things aren't going well in Punk Hazard. Doflamingo decides to go there. By flying.
    • Oh, and what does he do when he gets there? Only curb stomp a Vice Admiral. The VA's name? Smoker.
    • Let's not forget before Smoker gets defeated, Kuzan/Aokiji pulls a Big Damn Heroes moment by owning Doflamingo before he delivers the final blow on Smoker.
  • Smoker gets a ton in the Punk Hazard arc. He fights a Warlord of the Sea (and it's Trafalgar Law, to boot) and almost beats him. Even when stuck in Tashigi's body, which is explicitly weaker than his, he was still fast enough and strong enough to startle post-Time Skip Luffy. Then, after he got back into his own body, he started beating Vergo, who had curbstomped Law, who had beaten him. Smoker is still as badass as ever, perhaps even more so.
  • As of Chapter 659, Law is now one of the Seven Warlords of the Sea. How did he get the position? Sending the hearts of 100 pirates to the World Government. Brutal.
    • And at the end of Chapter 660, he flips over a freakin' Marine ship with his Devil Fruit power! Come next chapter, it is revealed that said ship was split in half and was stuck on top of a glacial sculpture.
    • He cut out Smoker's heart. Smoker is a Logia with Haki, and Law cut his heart out. Damn.
      • This really is impressive, considering the fact that beating Smoker in a one-on-one fight is a feat that not even Luffy has managed, though, admittedly, one he probably could now.
      • A prior warning from Smoker to Tashigi hints that Haki is not utterly impenetrable and can be broken through if the opponent's is stronger. That Law was able to cut Smoker's heart out and slice through Tashigi heavily implies that his Haki is more powerful than theirs, and it's further backed when he later slices clean through Vergo, who was decked in Armament Haki from head to toe. Reminder that Smoker and Vergo are both Vice-Admirals.
  • Kin'emon. He can cut explosions!
    • He treats cutting steel (a feat for which Zoro himself had to work hard to learn) as a very easy task.
  • Remember that dragon the Straw Hats encountered on Punk Hazard? No, not the one that Zoro cut up, the one pulling the sled full of apples after Smiley died. Remember how it was goofy and really non-threatening, well Chapter 680 reveals that it's only like that because it was drugged. Now that it's better than normal, it's even tougher than the one Zoro fought earlier.
  • In Chapter 690, Law gets a Breaking Speech from Doflamingo, who claims that whether in speed or power, he's nothing compared to Vergo. The latter charges at Law, with his entire body hardened by Haki to protect him from Law's ability... and Law cuts him in half effortlessly. He also cut the SAD tanks that were behind him, and the rest of the fucking island behind that.
    • What's more, for the first time in the story, Doflamingo actually stops smiling because of this.
    • It's more than that if those veins on his forehead are anything to go by. This is a serious Break the Haughty moment for the smug git.
  • Chapter 691, continues with Vergo being annoyed at Law hanging his head and limbs against the SAD's bar fence, then attempts a Breaking Speech implying a Dark and Troubled Past that Doflamingo had and that it is naive for him to think he could replace him. Law responds by cutting Vergo's head in vertical halves and says that he should worry about himself because the place is going to be explode, ending with him calling him "pirate" just to mock him. Translates to I'm leaving you to die and you can't get away even if you tried.
  • Law manages to up the ante in Chapter 694. Monet's ready to blow up the whole lab with everyone in it, and Caesar is ready to kill Smoker by stabbing his heart. The one thing both of them didn't count on was Law swapping Smoker's heart with Monet's before handing it over to Caesar, who ended up killing Monet instead, therefore stopping her from blowing up the island. Law himself has been a HUGE Spanner in the Works for Caesar and Doflamingo for the whole arc, starting by switching all the Seastone cuffs in the island for regular ones, from wiping out all of Caesar's major forces directly and indirectly.
  • Chapter 697, Law strikes up a very mafioso-esque deal with Doflamingo. He sends him the (still alive) heads of Buffalo and Baby 5 and offers to give Caesar back, on the condition that Doflamingo step down from the Seven Warlords. If he accepts, he'll be back to being a pirate and the admirals will rain down on him. If he doesn't, he'll have to deal with Kaido of the Four Emperors. This deal actually enrages Doflamingo, the first time we've seen.
  • Chapter 698 gives us a few bits of Wham Episodes. First, we have Doflamingo arriving at Punk Hazard and taking out G-5 with ease using Conqueror's Haki. Then we have Smoker refusing to tell where the Straw Hats went... right before being defeated by Doflamingo. Then, after Doflamingo takes out Smoker... Aokiji shows up!

Dressrosa Arc

  • Chapter 701 introduces a new mystery character based on Zatoichi, and has his Japanese actor Shintaro Katsu for the role — and just as his role, he's a blind guy... who immediately uses some sort of gravitational pull on the thugs trying to swindle him to make a giant sinkhole in the floor. Talk about making a first impression!
    • Said character's name? Admiral Fujitora.
    • Chapter 713 shows how far his powers reach. He can summon meteors!
  • Chapter 703: While waiting for the tournament for the Flame-Flame Fruit to begin, one of the gladiators notices Luffy (disguised as "Lucy"), who is admittedly puny compared to all the other competitors (including the gladiator in question, who is ten times larger than Luffy), and immediately claims that he shouldn't be here and tries to punch him. Luffy dodges the punch effortlessly, grabs the guy's arm, which is thicker than his entire body, lifts the guy up by about six or so feet and slams him down to the ground, knocking the guy out cold and bleeding and stunning all those watching.
  • Upon entering the tournament, Luffy momentarily forgot his own disguise and referred to himself as Luffy. Everyone else in the room, all of them powerful and vicious warriors, absolutely lose their shit at the very thought of Luffy being in the area. Luffy isn't just The Dreaded in the New World; he's Nightmare Fuel incarnate!
  • Both Cavendish and Don Chinjao get one in Chapter 708. Chinjao by showing a headbutt attack that earned him a fantastical bounty of 500,000,000 (one of the highest in the series so far) and is capable of crushing continents, and Cavendish by blocking said attack with a sword that is hardly large enough to serve as Chinjao's toothpick.
  • One of those blink-and-you miss it moments that's easy to overlook: The Tontatta dwarves revere Montblanc Noland as a hero. No surprise there, as anyone who's gone through the Skypeia arc knows perfectly well Noland's a badass. What's easily overlooked, however, is that the Tontatta Kingdom and Dressrosa are in the New World. Four hundred years ago, the Grand Line appeared to have been even more feared and treacherous than it is now, and Noland went that one step further and ventured into the New World on top of that.
  • 709: Elizabello the Second shows his Emperor-killing attack. It does not disappoint, sending everyone, including Blue Gilly, Bellamy and everyone else in the ring flying.
    • Followed by a major Trolling Moment of Awesome by Bartolomeo, who reveals that he can create barriers strong enough to block even THAT! And then he one-shots Elizabello, winning the match.
  • 711-712: Doflamingo reveals that he Out-Gambitted Law by giving a false report that he resigned from the Seven Warlords. To make give it an even greater shock, the only ones with the power to pull off such a stunt are the World Nobles, meaning that Doflamingo's connections go farther than anyone ever imagined.
  • 713: Fujitora shows what he's made of... by casually starting the attack on Law by dropping a huge meteor on the island they're on, an action which causes a minor Oh, Crap! from Doflamingo. Bonus points for Doflamingo and Law for slicing the thing before it could hit them.
  • A very short and easy to miss moment in Chapter 714: when Cavendish and Bartolomeo meet up, the latter tries to grab some of the former's food... but backs away when his hand is threatened with a simple fork. Now, when you remember that Bartolomeo spent his entire match so utterly invincible he didn't even need to pretend defending himself, and now he is casually threatened to back off and does, it becomes a very impressive indicator of Cavendish's power.
  • Guess who is a member of the Seven Warlords now? t's Buggy! That's right, a guy who was formerly considered merely average even by East Blue standards has become a major pirate. Sure, it's mainly thanks to a number of lucky coincidences, but still!
  • The new Dressrosa/Tournament arc in and on itself appears to be one big one, introducing lots of interesting characters. But one character in particular seems to stand out. It's Jesus Burgess, member of Blackbeard's pirate crew, who, in Chapter 704, seems to have wiped the ground with all of his opponents in the battle royale round without getting a scratch on him! Consider that the other contestants are mainly New World pirates (i.e. immensely powerful)
  • One of the first things Bellamy does while in the area? Nails two fighters to the ground, jumps over them and breaks both their backs. Yeah, he definitely Took a Level in Badass.
  • In Chapter 718, Luffy unveiled a new technique, "Gomu Gomu no Hawk Rifle", which was so strong, that it caused Don Chinjao to cough up blood even though he was using Armament Haki.
  • He then topped that in Chapter 719 when he won the C Block with perhaps his strongest move shown so far, "Gomu Gomu no Thor Elephant Gun".
    • Luffy's Grandpa Garp managed to hit Don Chinjao's Haki Charged Super Drill Head so hard that he not only flattened it, he bent it inwards. Luffy hits it so hard, that it turns back to normal.
  • Though Luffy is not yet aware of it, his defeat of Chinjao gained him a powerful ally, Chinjao himself, grateful for Luffy restoring his "drill." He has sworn to put his grandsons' fleet under Luffy's command.
    • As of Chapter 748, Luffy knows now. He, Zoro, and Law now have an army of not just Chinjao and his grandsons, but every single named fighter from the tournament, including Cavendish helping them try to take Doflamingo down.
  • 712: Sanji trapped and surrounded at all sides, wins over his main captor — a woman with vision powers — by allowing her to see into his heart and see that he was honest with her from their first meeting, including recognizing when she was truthful when pleaded with him for help.
  • Luffy does it again in Chapter 714: After the giant Hajrudin takes down a fighting bull that Luffy has tamed and befriended, Luffy enters Tranquil Fury mode and takes out the giant with one single punch. Everybody was absolutely speechless.
  • In Chapter 722, Brook performs a Fake Heel Turn to trick the enemy attacking the Thousand Sunny — Giolla, a Mad Artist who uses the power of her Devil Fruit to transform her victims into powerless living paintings — going so far as to offer to play some mood music. Which serves as a distraction for his signature humming sword style...
    Giolla: Hmm? Sliced?
    Brook:Painting Song... Bamboo Flute Slice!
    (Cue Giolla being struck down by multiple slashes)
    • In conclusion? Not only did he beat a foe who had neutralized the crew protecting the Thousand Sunny (himself, Nami, Chopper, and Momonosuke), but he turned one of his usual comedic tics into a Badass Boast! Hot damn, Soul King; you make us proud!
    • Doflamingo has gotten another one. So far, he's fought on par with a Marine Admiral and Trafalgar Law, and set up a Batman Gambit to fake stepping down from the Warlords. So how could he top that, some might ask? By delivering one hell of a Wham Line when talking about how a certain 19 kings became the Celestial Dragons 800 years ago, and how their countries selected new kings to replace the original "creator families:"
    Doflamingo: But the creators... The ones who left for Marijoa... were the Donquixotes!!
  • Chapter 723: Sanji saving Chopper, Nami and Brook from Doflamingo
  • Chapter 724: Law is an indisputable badass in this chapter. After saving Sanji from Doflamingo, he proceeds to tell the Straw Hats to go without him, leaving himself behind to face of Doflamingo one-on-one with Giolla as a hostage. Just before they are about to fight, Law reveals that he was never after Kaido — his main target has always been Doflamingo. He states that even if he does die in the coming battle, Doflamingo will still die at the hands of Kaido after the Straw Hats destroy the SMILEs factory, and as much as he would love to see the chaos that would unfold after his death, his revenge comes first and he is fully prepared to die for it.
  • Chapter 727: The fact that the Riku family managed to avoid any wars for 800 years shows how well they run their country.
    • The reveal of how Doflamingo took over Dressrosa. He forced King Riku to give him 10 billion Berries or else he'd start a war. Having gone 800 years without one, Riku gave in and begged his country to give all their money. But before they could finish, Doflamingo used his powers to control Riku and the soldiers to slaughter the people, using Monet as a mole, then stops the army with his own crew to gain the instant respect of the nation. To give context, Crocodile took years to launch his invasion of Alabasta, Doflamingo did it in one night.
    • Then again Doflamingo had prepared his coup for at least months, not unlike Crocodile: it was a success thanks to Monet infiltrating the royal castle and Vergo infiltrating the Marine.
  • Chapter 730: Sanji prepares to lead a counterattack against Big Mom's ship.
  • Chapter 731 Sabo survived and now he's taking Luffy's place as "Lucy"!
  • Chapter 738 has Trebol showing off his crazy hand-eye coordination by shooting a moving fly between the eyes! At the end of the chapter, he tosses a ship at the tower with just a few strings of his Sticky Sticky Fruit powers.
  • Chapter 737: Sabo shows off how strong he is by shattering Burgess' armor with a Haki-infused claw attack.
  • Chapter 739: The Toy Soldier's true identity is the legendary Kyros, who is renowned through Dressrosa for battling in 3000 matches and never getting hit once.
  • Chapter 741 After running away from the battlefield at the end of 740, Usopp hears the cries of the Dwarves getting horribly beaten and manages to not only sum up enough courage to return, but to admit to the Dwarves that he was lying the whole time and even though he's not related to Noland, he will still be their hero. He then cuts Trebol with a giant grass shuriken.
    Usopp: My name is Usopp! Remember that, Tontattas! And if I should die... build me a statue next to Noland's!! Because I'm about to become your legendary hero!!!
    • And then in the following chapter, it's revealed that Usopp has seemingly been defeated by Trebol and Sugar, the latter of whom intends to feed him the spiked grape that was intended for her. As she does so, Usopp lets out a terrifying face, scaring the brat into unconsciousness and making the mission a success and even making allies out of those gladiators that were recently converted to toys.
      • It gets even better. When Doflamingo issues personal bounties for his Involuntary Battle to the Death game for Dressrosa upon those who wronged him, Usopp receives the biggest bounty of 500,000,000 Beri. For reference, Luffy's at the time official World Government issued bounty is lower than what Doflamingo put on Usopp's head. And his title? God Usopp.
    • Yes, Luffy eventually tied with and surpassed Usopp, but the tie came when he defeated Doflamingo (who had issued the 500 mill berry bounty on usopp) and only surpassed after events crazy enough he is at time of writing considered the 5th emperor!
      • On top of that: Remember Usopp's trademark boast of having 8000 followers? Consider how many people must be following him after that. One lie after another coming true, hm?
      • The irony of the very first time the dwarves disbelieving someone being one of the rare times that Usopp is actually honest about his cowardice makes it even better, as it emphasizes their trust for him. It also doubles as a Heartwarming Moment.
  • Chapter 742: Sugar has passed out, and all of the toys in Dressrosa are about to be restored to their original forms, and the memories of them are going to return.
    • In the anime, you also get to see many of the former toys take their entirely justifiable rage out on Doffy's mooks, whether they be civilian, world government, marines, soldiers of Dressrosa, or even just some reaaaly pissed off animals. Especially the Mass "Oh, Crap!" at the Black Market Docks, as EVERY major player from the Colosseum that ended up toyed proceeds to kick gratuitous amounts of mook ass.
  • Chapter 743: After Kyros gets turned back into a human, he rushes at Doflamingo with only one leg and friggin slices his head off! Ho-ly crap!
  • Chapter 744: Sabo gains Ace's Devil Fruit and then proceeds to hit the ring so hard with Ace's signature technique, Fire Fist/Hiken.
    • Further, he manages to not hurt the person he was carrying in his other hand.
  • Chapter 745 shows that not only is Doflamingo alive and well from his "beheading", but it turns out that he made a string clone that could take his place. But the real awesome comes from slicing the upper castle off just to cut Kyros' head off with a kick. And even when Luffy narrowly saves Kyros, Doffy proceeds to tank all of Gear Second Luffy's attacks before ordering his henchman Pica to kick everybody out of the building. Looking forward to Round 2, but at least we know that when the Big Bad of this arc is a Warlord, he ain't gonna be a pushover to Luffy.
  • Chapter 748: Don Chinjao and Elizabello II showcase their power some more by taking Pica head on (who is currently the size of Oars at this point) and smashing his hand!
  • Chapter 749: Part awesome and part funny — After Zoro managed to block Pica's giant sword from harming Luffy, he tells Luffy to go to Doflamingo's place. Then he delivers this line for Pica:
    But our captain wants nothing to do with a pebble like you. So you'll you have to make do with me, soprano singer.
  • Chapter 754: 108 Pound Cannon just got upgraded to 1080 Pound Cannon
    Zoro: "Oh yea, I forgot to say one thing. There's more to the Straw Hat Crew than Straw Hat Luffy and God Usopp. Don't forget this! One day, I will be the greatest swordsman in the entire world!!! I'm on an entirely different level than you!!''
  • Chapter 750: Sabo stands alone against Fujitora, Bastille, and an army of grunts. Armed only with his pipe, his Haki, and his new fire powers.
  • Chapter 751: Sabo effortlessly curbstomps Bastille, a Marine vice-admiral! Holy crap!
  • Chapter 752: Abdullah and Jeet arriving just in time to save Luffy, Law, and Ucy from Doflamingo's string clone.
  • Chapter 759: Law mere seconds after switching with Doflamingo, dispatches Trebol with ease. Keep in mind that guy was considered one of the strongest of Doflamingo's executives, and Law brought him down almost as an afterthought while chewing out Luffy for that crazy scheme.
    • When Luffy and Law have finally caught up to Doflamingo, but the villain is not interested in directly fighting them, using his String-String powers instead. So what does Luffy do? He plays up getting really pissed off and goes after Law, the latter catches on and uses his Op-Op power to swap places with Doflamingo! Luffy of all people, used an Indy Ploy! Not only that, for the first time in the entire series, Doflamingo has received a damaging blow!
    • And it wasn't just any punch Luffy used: it was a Red Hawk. And this one punch brought Doflamingo to his knees.
    • See it here in the anime.
  • Chapter 763: LAW IS A D?!
  • Chapter 765 gives one for Corazon showing what he can do when having to steal the Ope Ope No Mi for Law from pirates — He uses his fruit, and then sets a fire that doesn't make any noise, and when the pirates are distracted he shoots out the lights without making a sound, and in the confusion he runs in, kicks their leader in the face and steals the fruit, then JUMPS OUT THE WINDOW HE JUST BROKE SILENTLY. And for good measure, he throws in a grenade... which explodes in complete silence. And he doesn't get undone by his own clumsiness ONCE during all of that.
  • Chapter 758 is basically one big moment of awesome for Usopp, from his speech about Sugar to his awakening of Haki, but his crowning moment in the chapter, if not the whole series up to that point, is the fact that he managed to knock Sugar out again by shooting a special projectile Kanjuro made for him, from an even bigger distance than in Enies Lobby, and with even more parameters to take into account. Pure Awesomeness by Analysis.
    • "I'm a sniper, and backup is where I shine!! I shoot down the enemy by surprise to protect my people!!" Damn, Usopp. You've come a long way.
    • It was in that moment that Usopp truly proved that he is the King of Snipers. Hands down.
  • Some Adaptation Expansion in anime episode 653 shows Nami taking a bigger role in taking down Giolla, blasting her with the Sunny's Gaon Cannon before delivering the final shot with her Thunderbolt Tempo.
  • Chapter 760 has Doflamingo quickly recovering from Luffy's attack and proceeding to wipe the floor with him and Law (and rescuing Trebol while he's at it) in very short order. Of particular note is him using Armament Haki with a kick to defeat Luffy's own usage of the technique.
    • The last point deserves some more elaboration. We've seen Haki overwhelm Haki before, such as Vergo against Smoker and Law against Vergo, but this is the first time we've seen a Haki-user get hit so hard their Haki turned off.
  • Chapter 764 shows that you can burn down his house, beat him to a pulp, shoot him in the chest, and string him up to slowly roast to death over open flames, but you can never ever break Donquixote Doflamingo's pride. Not even when he's just a child.
  • Chapter 766 features the Donquixote Family arriving on Minion Island, garbed in badass winter gear and showing off just how powerful they appeared in their prime. Specific mention goes to Gladius and Senor Pink, who pull off their outfits especially well.
    • Doflamingo using a beta version of the Bird Cage. Though it's not as massive as the one he'll develop in later years, it's still powerful enough to murder everyone under it.
  • Chapter 767 reveals how Doflamingo and his family escaped the mob that had captured them in Chapter 764. He used Haki. Specifically Conqueror's Haki, i.e the ability to tame beasts and knock people out through your sheer will.
  • Doflamingo grabbing the blade of Law's nodachi with his bare hands in Chapter 768.
    • Followed by him hacking off Law's right arm!]
    • He also completely No-Sell'd "Mes," Law's heart-removal technique that dropped a Vice Admiral.
    • Also, even though he's heavily wounded, Bellamy decides to fight Luffy. Say what you want about his motivations, he's come a long way from the bully who picked on supposed weaklings and mocked their dreams.
    • Corazon tops himself. He uses his Devil Fruit to silence Law, then lies to Doflamingo's face that he escaped, while leaning against the chest he locked Law into. If that wasn't enough, after Doflamingo fatally shoots him, Corazon keeps himself alive through sheer willpower as long as possible, so that Law wouldn't be able to make noise and alert the Donquixote family to his presence as they carried him to safety. Refuge in Audacity and Papa Wolf are a mighty combination indeed.
  • Chapter 770: Hajruden was worf'd by Luffy in the colosseum, and is now getting worf'd by Donquixote officer Machvise. Machvise prepares to finish the giant off with a more powerful version of his belly-flop, but Hajruden, reflecting on his desire to repay the Straw Hats for saving him from being a Living Toy, gets up and counters the belly flop with an uppercut. Even though the force of the collision shatters his forearm, Hajruden manages to punch Machvise into the air, turning the Fat Bastard into a bloody smear against the top of the Birdcage. After seeing several chapters of the Donquixote Pirates being seemingly unstoppable, this is very satisfying. On top of that, it is one of the rare moments in One Piece where a member of the main villains in the arc is decisively taken down by someone other than a Straw Hat (or a future Straw Hat member). It's even more awesome in the anime.
    • Let's be blunt, here. Harjudin overpowered a collision of ten thousand tons. No, no guesstimation, no room for error, literally ten thousand tons. All with one good arm, while shattering said arm and one of his leg's bones in the process, and he still managed enough force to send Machvise hurtling into the ceiling of the birdcage thousands of feet in the air. This man is truly worthy of the Straw Hat Grand Fleet.
  • Chapter 771: Sai on the spur of the moment, develops a kick that rivals Don Chinjao's headbutt in terms of sheer power — and uses it to take down Donquixote Officer Lao G when the latter attacks him in Super Mode.
  • Chapter 772: Dellinger turns out to be a descendant of the FIGHTING FISH, Bartolomeo creates a gigantic barrier and steamrolls Gladius's soldiers as well as Cavendish, and because of that, Hakuba awakens once again and takes down Dellinger in one hit.
  • Chapter 773: Bartolomeo defeats Gladius with a homage to Luffy's Signature Move.
    • Remember how unstoppably fast Hakuba is? Robin effortlessly stops him in mid-attack.
      • Which is a subtly awesome call-back to one of the first times Robin's power is fully shown. She's told people before, speed is nothing to her. Not even Hakuba, who's so fast his sword strikes are like the wind attacking. It's got nothing on Robin.
    • In the same chapter, Cavendish manages to take control of Hakuba.
  • Chapter 774: Leo and Kabu's Big Damn Heroes moment. Seconds before Giolla manages to use Manshelly's Swiss Army Tears to revive her unconscious teammates, they burst in. Kabu knocks the unconscious executives away with one punch (especially impressive considering one of the KOed executives is the Fat Bastard Machvise), then Leo uses his power to stitch them to Giolla while they're still airborne, causing them to crash right into her, knocking her out. All that at lightning-fast speed.
  • Chapter 775 features the long-awaited battle between Senor Pink and Franky, and it does not disappoint. Since they've started their fight at the Smile Factory, the two have done nothing but trade punches and suplexes, both refusing to dodge the other's attacks. Franky is stated to have taken 30 suplexes. Pink acknowledges that he isn't as young as he used to be, so he decides to go for broke and unleash his ultimate attack on Franky; if the Cyborg survives, then it's Pink's loss. Pink uses his Swim-Swim powers to carry Franky up to the top of the Factory, and unleashes the mother of all suplexes directly on Franky's back, which is still his weakspot. Once the dust settles...Franky gets back up and hammers Pink with Franky Iron Boxing. Pink just takes it like a man, and once done, Franky wipes away the tears off his Worthy Opponent's eyes.
  • Hero of the Colosseum: Kyros vs Diamante. Kyros is one-legged, has up until this point ran all the way across Dressrosa, climbed up the mountain to the flower fields, and spent most of the fight defending Rebecca, but he takes everything Diamante throws at him. When Diamante makes it rain spiked steel balls, Kyros just deflects them with his sword. Diamante shoots Kyros in the leg, causing his focus to loosen and receives maybe hundreds of spikes falling down on him. But, even when he's cut up, he just gets up and takes Diamante down in one slash — through Diamante's own powerful slash (and breaks Diamante's sword in the process) at that.
    • The highlight of the fight being when he deflected rain
    Kyros: My pain is proof of my humanity!! You would not understand that!!! You would not understand the despair of being forgotten by your loved ones!!! The pain of not being able to feel anything that you touch!!! Compared to the rain of tragedy you have inflicted upon Dressrosa this does not even count as pain!!! If I am "solid" anything then I am this country's solid rage here to vanquish you!!!!
  • Chapter 777: Diamante is knocked into Scarlett's grave so hard it snaps his neck. Scarlett just got her revenge from beyond the grave.
  • Chapter 778: Tactics No. 5
    • Pica has abandoned Zoro on a cliff to go crush King Riku and Usopp. Knowing that he can't fire off a Razor Wind powerful enough that far or jump across the distance, Zoro has Orlumbus Fastball Special him across the huge gap. With G-forces pressing against him, Zoro cuts Pica's giant stone body to pieces, until the Donquixote Executive doesn't have a big enough rock to hide in. Going full-body Haki, Pica attacks Zoro... who easily cuts him down. Sanzen Sekai!!
      Zoro: Nine mountains and Eight seas... There is nothing I cannot cut. Three-Sword Style: Secret Art... The Billion-Fold World, Trichiliocosm!!!!
      • This is even more awesome when you consider that Sanzen Sekai was the move he used against Mihawk which failed to do anything to the latter. Here we see the move at its true full potential.
    • As well as this line when he knocks him out "Don't mess with good people!"
    • One to King Riku for standing his ground and giving Pica a Shut Up, Hannibal! as the latter is about to crush him.
      Riku: You are correct... I was helpless to protect my kingdom!! I will never sit atop the throne again. But at least I did what I must to remain human!!! If murder is the only means for me to live then I chose death!! There is no future for a nation of slaughter!!!!
    • And finally, when it seems that everyone will be crushed by the rubble anyway, Elizabello II, back at the cliff Zoro started out on, uses his King Punch to blow the rocks away — across a distance that Zoro thought his own flying slash attacks wouldn't reach.
      • May also count as one for Zoro as well, as he told Elizabello to reserve his strength until it's really needed. It's likely that he saw this coming.
    • The crowd's reaction really sells it. Absolutely everyone had an Oh, Crap! look when they saw him cutting the city-sized Pica into pieces.
  • Chapter 779: Mihawk states it's possible to channel Haki into swords. Given what color his own sword is, that either means the blade itself is black or he's so strong he can permanently charge it with Haki.
  • Chapter 780: Law flips off Doflamingo.
    • To clarify, Doflamingo offers Law a wish in exchange for granting the Warlord immortality via the Ope-Ope no Mi. His response? He has the balls to tell Doflamingo to bring Corazon back to life and lick the asshole of every last poor citizen in Dressrosa whose life he ruined.
    • While the anime censored out the gesture, it more than made up for it by taking Law's Badass Boast about the Straw Hats and playing a montage of their most awesome feats over it.
  • Gum Gum Hawk Gatling. That is all.
    • Doffy gets one for blocking an Elephant gun with his hand. Granted, he had the help of his strings, but still.
  • Chapter 781: Law isn't dead, to put it mildly. First, he wakes up, and he and Luffy combine attacks to make Doflamingo feel some serious pain. When asked how he can use his powers without a Room running, he reveals that he's had a massive (and thus, undetectable) one up the entire battle. He then proceeds to make Doflamingo bleed for what he did to Corazon. Holy damn, Law.
    • Gamma Knife. In the world of One Piece, there is almost no such thing as a form of attack that legitimately can't be survived, no matter how absurd or intense. Well, Law created one. It essentially ignores the skin to flay your internal organs in one shot. Indeed, it would be impossible to survive if Doflamingo's power wasn't inherently a perfect counter for it.
      • Even better in the anime, where the gorgeous animation really hammers the attack home as Law rams it into Doflamingo's chest.
      • Doflamingo gets one in this respect. He's able to cheat death by stitching up his mangled organs with flawless precision by simply concentrating. It's just like when Wyper struck Eneru with a Reject Dial and he used his Devil Fruit power to restart his own heart.
    • Luffy taking Trebol out with one hit. And this was to shut him up.
    • The last page. Luffy and Doflamingo stare down. Shit is about to get real!
      • Not to mention how Luffy stopped Doflamingo's Finishing Stomp on Law with one leg from an angle with no leverage. Without batting an eye. DAMN, he's strong.
  • Chapter 782: Law is stuck to the ground by Trebol's mucus and seemingly at his enemies' mercy. Just as Trebol is about to finish him off, Law conjures up a small Room, uses his powers to move his severed arm still holding his sword towards him, then spins the arm around like a buzzsaw, cutting and heavily wounding Trebol.
    • Luffy gets a few more hits on Doflamingo, the last of which was Gum Gum Hawk Bazooka.
    • The rest of Doflamingo's past has been revealed to us. He apparently obtained Haki since he was a kid, and that his four executives have raised him the entire time. For as much of a Psycho-Jerkass as he is, you cannot deny how cool it was for his executives to bow to him with respect for his days to come.
      • On the other hand, it's because of the power they gave him by supporting him, and because of how they encouraged his entitlement complex, that he was able to become the monster he is today. All the suffering, all the atrocities, all the horror and misery, it's all on those four. Having encouraged and fostered his cruelty and selfishness, they are completely at fault for the suffering of countless innocents.
  • Chapter 783: Two words: Gear Fourth.
    • Leading up to that moment is Luffy giving Doflamingo a huge middle finger when he tries his usual guilt tripping by saying things in Dressrosa would have been peaceful had the Straw Hats not shown up.
    Luffy: No!!! You’re the one in MY way! You made my friends cry and and you made my friends mad! And you still won't go down, so I'm taking it all on myself!! I won't let any of them die!! You and your cage... are in my way! Gear... FOUR.
  • Chapter 784. Gear Fourth. Luffy created a transformation that brings out the fullest capabilities of a rubber body: Gear Fourth, a Spiritual Successor to the tremendous, once-off Nightmare Luffy that allows him to achieve flight and it is devastating.
    • The color spread for this issue! It's the usual beautiful work you have come to expect only this time with zombies. What makes this awesome? Well, when's the last time we've seen zombies? More to the point, what had many people the world over been guessing for Gear Fourth's basis? It's almost as if Oda is giving a quiet nod to say "yes, you're pretty much on-base."
    • While everyone (well, not including those who are fighting or near the center, anyway) else is trying to run away from the impending doom called the Bird Cage, there's only one man who's willing to go the exact opposite way. Roronoa Zoro. And this time, it's not because he's lost.
    Zoro: It's obvious... We're going to stop 'that thing'.
  • Chapter 785:
    • With a Call-Back to Impel Down, of all arcs, Doflamingo reestablished awakened Devil Fruit powers. He then promptly continued saying that his DF powers, when awakened, would allow you to transform the environment around you into string, and then manipulate said string to fight others.
    • Luffy's answer was to ponder this briefly and then just hit him even harder, ending the chapter by once again sending Doflamingo flying, leaving him embedded in the outer wall of his palace.
    • King Riku, upon seeing his citizens giving up hope, gives a Rousing Speech and encourages everyone to hold on, with the belief that Luffy will win. It works. It even moves an exhausted grandmother to suddenly run fast, much to the awe of her granddaughter.
  • Chapter 786:
    • Doflamingo is down! The people rejoice! Then he gets back up.
    • With Luffy down for the count for the next ten minutes, Jesus Burgess decides to take advantage of the situation and tries to strike a killing blown on him...and promptly gets kicked in the face by Sabo.
  • Chapter 787:
    • In this corner, the First Mate of the Emperor Blackbeard, the man who upseated Whitebeard himself, arguably the strongest of Blackbeard's original crew, Jesus Burgess! In the other corner, the right hand of Monkey D. Dragon. Aaaaand there goes Burgess.
      • To be fair though, Burgess shows once more why he sits where he is. A single lariat from him rips clean through a multitude of stone buildings from what appears to be dozens of meters away.
    • The birdcage is closing in, and it's down to the wire. Luffy needs four more minutes until he can end this once and for all. The birdcage only needs three before the slaughter begins. Only one force stands in its way now: the Straw Hat crew and their allies throughout this arc, spearheaded by none other than Roronoa Zoro.
  • Chapter 788: Everyone's helping out in pushing the Birdcage: Kin'emon, Kanjuro and even Fujitora help Zoro, the Marines help push the factory, and the gladiators, Robin, the dwarves and the citizens help push the cage thanks to Bartolomeo's barriers. They make it clear that there's no way in hell they're going down without a fight.
    Fujitora: Welp, I may not be able to discern your face with my eyesight, but I ain't one to stand by while fools struggle at their task. Though my power may be slight, I pledge it to your cause!!!
    • Viola fighting Doflamingo by herself, just to stall for time and protect the citizens. Considering how well she knows how powerful and how utterly insane he is, she has ovaries of steel.
  • Chapter 789: Luffy's Big Damn Heroes moment: Mansherry's healing powers' effect starts to run out, causing some of the gladiators who were pushing the Birdcage to pass out, and Doflamingo is causing Rebecca to charge at Viola. But just before she can cut her down, Luffy recovers, and with Law's help, manages to step in and break Rebecca's sword with his Haki-imbued head in the nick of time. Even better is the build-up to it, with the citizens of Dressrosa chanting Luffy's name and counting the seconds before his recovery, and Gatz taunting Doflamingo by saying that Dressrosa will be his "execution ground".
  • Chapter 790: Luffy does not disappoint. After Doflamingo pulls out all the stops by turning what's left of Dressrosa into string, Luffy responds by turning into Gear Fourth again. He then makes good on his promise to defeat Doflamingo with one last blow — a punch so powerful that it splits the town in half. More significantly, Luffy shattered Doflamingo's shades.
    • King Kong Gun. It does split the town in half, but not only that — it splits the town in half, blows both halves into the sky as upturned slabs of land, and sends entire chunks carrying multiple buildings splitting off and flying into the air. If one didn't believe Luffy is a potential island-buster after the timeskip, it'd be damn hard to argue it now.
    • A subtle one. After Doflamingo severely beats Luffy, he uses his Parasite technique to control him and forcefully walk him over. Doffy tries to break Luffy by talking again, but he'll have none of that and goes Gear Fourth, snapping the strings. Doflamingo's Signature Move, which he has used since his introduction, that could control the likes of Vice-Admirals, Jozu of the Whitebeard Pirates, and even Sanji, with no one able to resist it, and Luffy No Sells it!
  • Chapter 791: The impossible has happened: Donquixote Doflamingo has finally been defeated!! After years of being an insufferable, unstoppable monster — both in-universe, and out — Luffy has finally crushed the prick's hold over a country he's ruled for over a decade. And unlike Chapter 786, it's not a fake-out this time — Birdcage disappearing confirms that Doflamingo has lost consciousness, and the battle for Dressrosa is finally over. Everyone bawling their eyes out over the fact seals the deal.
  • Chapter 792: Fujitora having the balls to not inform the World Government about what happened to Dressrosa yet but instead broadcast to the countries that are neighboring Dressrosa on what really happened in the country, including telling them that the Straw Hat and Heart Pirate Alliance took down Doflamingo, and that the whole reason Doflamingo was able to torment Dressrosa for so long was because the World Government allowed Doflamingo to become a Warlord. Then he, an Admiral, and the Marines get on their knees and bow to Riku in apology for all the World Government has done to them. For the first time in One Piece, the World Government has been denied the chance to avoid humiliation by attempting yet another one of their cover-ups and then pretend nothing ever happened. There's not a single fucking thing they can do about it, and that fact is very satisfying to hear.
    • After Burgess pushes Sabo's Berserk Button so hard it breaks, Sabo answers with a point-blank Fire Fist, taking out Burgess effortlessly. He then says that he won't mull over Ace's death again, because he knows Ace would never forgive him if he did.
  • Chapter 793: is a series of continuously awesome moments expressed through dialogue. Some highlights included:
    • Akainu's screaming match with the Five Elder Stars. He may be a Knight Templar, but he has his Marine pride, and will not take crap from anyone, World Government and World Nobles included.
    • Fujitora's determination to do the right thing was partially inspired by Smoker's own distasteful experience in Alabasta. Smoker's power may not be among the top dogs of the New World, but his own idealism and determination has earned him a very powerful ally.
    • Fujitora bowed down to King Riku despite the running camera snail. He then exclaimed his belief that a man who let pirates run wild on innocent folks has no place to act as though he dispenses justice late. Later on, he proceeds to scream his beliefs defiantly to the aforementioned hot-blooded, prideful and extremely powerful Akainu. Already a powerful fighter despite his blindness, this chapter really showed us Fujitora's strength of character.
      • Fujitora doesn't just tell off Akainu, he basically calls the man a little bitch when he responds to Akainu's claims of "caus[ing] [their] justice to lose all face" by yelling that:
    Fujitora: "If your face is all you care about, keep it tucked away where it won't get hurt!!! If admittin' fault means your trust is gone, you didn't have none in the first place!!!"
    • Akainu gets him back, though; Fujitora is now Persona Non Grata and banned from all Marine bases until he brings both Luffy and Law back with him. Fujitora is perfectly happy with that.
    Fujitora: "...That's just what I wanted to hear!!!!"
    • Even after being banished, when Sengoku tells Fujitora he should apologize, he retorts that he won't because he "still has his pride."
  • Chapter 795: We are treated to something akin to a meteor that wrecked half of Kid's base. Then it turns out to be a hole the size of a giant with horns. Back up a few minutes to see what really happened. Turns out it was a man who had jumped off a sky island and straight into the ground. Then the narrator slowly recounts the man's life: A man who has been captured by the Navy and other Emperors eighteen times. A man subjected to ten thousand different means of torture and still lived. A man sentenced to death forty times, all of which meant nothing. When hung, the rope snapped. When put to the guillotine, the blade shattered. When stabbed by spears, they were snapped with ease. A man, no... a monster so desensitized towards the concept of his own death, this invulnerable giant finds it amusing to walk off the edge of a Sky Island and plunge headfirst into the earth, 10,000 meters below, just to see if it does anything. And when it doesn't even scratch him, he proceeds to take out his legendary temper and demands Doflamingo to finish the preparation to allow him to wage the greatest war the world has ever seen. This man is Kaido of the Four Emperors, and now you know why the entire world fears him. A reveal equal parts chilling and awesome.
    • The anime manages to enhance the epicness by actually showing some of those attempts...then have Kaido cause a shockwave across the entire island just by yelling.
  • Before we move the focus onto the next arc, can we just give Oda a round of applause for Donquixote Doflamingo? Not any specific moment either; everything about his character was epic in this arc. This may be a little subjective, but he was by far one of the most interesting, entertaining, and dynamic villains ever introduced in One Piece. And to back that up, just look at the amount of tropes on his character entry! Even with the issues most fans had with Dressrosa's less than optimal pacing, I think it can be agreed that Doflamingo elevated the arc in every scene he was in, up to and including how satisfying it was to see him crushed by Luffy.
  • As of Chapter 798, after everyone else has shat themselves at Fujitora's display of might, Luffy, instead of heading to the boat, takes him on solely because an Admiral is an obstacle he has to overcome on his way to becoming Pirate King, starting by actually bruising him and sending him flying with an Elephant Gun.
    • Chapter 799: More than that, he holds his own, giving Fujitora a solid run for his money before being forced to leave the fight by his comrades. For the first time, we see Fujitora truly pushed in a fight, and he acknowledges Luffy's spirit and might.
    • After they escaped from Fujitora, The Corrida Colosseum gladiators, as well as Leo and a whole bunch of dwarves, ally themselves into seven crews, and request Luffy takes them under their wing, as their boss. If Luffy accepts, that means the crew will have seven subdivisions, not unlike the Whitebeard Pirates, and 5640 people will join.
  • As of Chapter 800, the Straw Hat Grand Fleet is born. As a result, Luffy has started to become the new Whitebeard in terms of military strength.
  • In Chapter 801, the Straw Hats see their new bounties. The collective bounties for the crew have nearly doubled with the largest increase (percentage wise) goes to God Usopp with a bounty of 200 million, which also makes him the third highest bounty on the crew.
    • It should be noted again (if it hasn't been here already) that Usopp is supposed to physically be the weakest member of the crew... and yet he is out-ranking one of the Big Three (Luffy, Zoro, and Sanji) in terms of bounty. If it were anyone else, it would be fairly impressive, but because this is Usopp we're talking about, this makes it incredibly awesome.
    • Rob Lucci is back, and has joined CP-0, the strongest Cipher Pol unit.
    • What, no mention of the fact that Spandam, the Jerkass Big Bad of CP9 arc, who treated his own employees as trash, is not only working under Lucci, but also probably is the Butt-Monkey, bossed by Lucci (and very much implied other members)??
  • The entire Doflamingo arc has another level of retroactive awesome in that it shows that Luffy and Zoro, the most dangerous of them, up until this arc, have yet to show their true powers.

    Zou Arc 
  • Chapter 802:
    • We are introduced to the "alleged" son of Whitebeard, Edward Weevil. Now, while it is still up in the air if he is in fact his son, Weevil is not only the Warlord of the Sea with the highest bounty of all current/former Warlords, he also uses a bisento like Whitebeard does. What's more, the guy has been hunting down anyone associated with Whitebeard, and so far, has taken down 16 of the allied pirates by himself with no damage visible!
    • Though it was mostly Played for Laughs, Bartolomeo's crew making it to the New World despite being laughably incompetent and not even having a navigator is awesome in itself.
  • Chapter 803: Though it might not be as awesome as one might think, we get to see Buggy the Clown after two years! The guy has done some crazy work and now uses pirate mercenaries to get all the gold he wants! The real gem of awesome, however, is the fact that when he hears that Doflamingo has finally been removed from the "market," the world turns to him to get the men necessary for the wars going on. Doesn't hurt that he gives a death glare when he hears that Harjudin has left with the rest of the giants that were part of his Pirate Dispatch Society.
    • That Death Glare was just the beginning though. His crew-mate knew Buggy wasn't gonna be any happier to hear that Harjudin left to join Luffy.
  • Chapter 804: We are introduced to Carrot, a member of the Mink Tribe, who might look like your stereotypical Cute Monster Girl (a rabbit, no less) but pulls off one heck of an entrance. To elaborate: she dashes right at Zoro, jumps out of the way of his sword, and somehow manages to fire an electric attack when Zoro goes to block her sharp claws!
    • On top of that, we find out in the following arc, when Carrot gets into a full fight, that it wasn't just Zoro getting caught off guard in a surprise attack: Carrot really IS that strong.
  • Chapter 805: We get to see more of the Mink Tribe, and they are proving to be quite the species in One Piece. Not only are they tough enough to go toe-to-toe with Luffy and Jean Bart of the Heart Pirates, apparently, they're so good at avoiding detection that Luffy didn't even know he was surrounded until an order was shouted by one of them to pull back!
  • Chapter 807: We get to see (in a Flashback) exactly what Sanji's group had to do in order to get away from Big Mom's flagship (properly named the "Singing Ship" ). Not only did they get away from Baron Tamago and Pekoms, but we also learned they were able to avoid capture by Capone Bege! How did they do this you ask? First, Brook freezes the cannonballs, then Chopper, in Monster Point, uses Caesar Clown to catch all of the cannonballs to shoot them towards Sanji, who kicks them with Diable Jambe to make literal fireballs for their counter attack, damaging the side of Big Mom's ship! To finish this whole flashback of awesome, Nami uses her Sorcery Clima-Tact to make a dense fog to finally get away.
  • Chapter 808:
    • We finally get to see Jack in person, or rather in Zoan Form, and as previously thought by many, it turns out that Jack has eaten a Devil Fruit that lets him turn into a mammoth! The kicker? Jack is also one of Kaido's top men, and according to Sheepshead, Jack is known as "Jack the Drought" for being so strong that whatever village he's in ends up looking as though a drought hit the place.
    • And special mention once more goes to the Mink Tribe for having an entire population of warriors. As quoted by Monji, the Mink don't have any weaklings (even their infants, as in their toddlers, can fend for themselves).
  • Chapter 809:
    • Duke Dogstorm manages to stop an attack from Jack's trunk without flinching.
    • Our introduction of the Cat Viper has him grab Jack's trunk and body slam him.
    • Special mention to Jack for managing to achieve the highest known bounty in the series at that point — one BILLION berries. For reference, this bounty is twice as big as Luffy's bounty, which is five hundred million. This is also the first time a bounty has crossed into ten-digit territory.
  • Chapter 810: Both a Villainous and a Heroic example of Awesome is the battle between Jack and the Mink Tribe. It takes 5 days AND nights for both sides to grow tired. On the Heroic side, the Minks were actually able to hold out for those days and nights and would've won had Jack not resorted to the gas bomb. On the Villain side, Jack himself for fighting for those days without giving an inch, even when he had been body slammed prior by the Cat Viper.
  • Chapter 811:
    • On this chapter, we have a moment of Awesome coupled with a Moment of Heartwarming as we watch the rest of the flashback play out on how the rest of the Straw Hats helped the Minks after Jack's attack. Special points for calling back Brook and Sanji's attack on Sheepshead and Nami for cooling down Wanda.
    • Chopper steps up, takes charge, and reminds us all that he's more than just a cute Team Pet Mascot by organizing the treatment of all the injured and gassed Minks.
  • Chapter 812: Bege gets a magnificent one when he seamlessly betrays Pekoms, unleashes his men to surround Sanji and Brook, apprehends Nami and Chopper, and tricks Caesar into revealing himself and surrendering. All without a single hitch.
  • Chapter 813: Though it ends on a more depressing note, Sanji still shows his Guile Hero chops to great effect. He waits until his Observation Haki finds backup nearby (backup no less than Cat viper, who found Pekoms wounded from earlier) before forcing Nami, Chopper, and Brook out of Bege's castle. He further ensures their safety by immediately stealing a gun and putting it to Caesar's head. And all the while, Sanji taunts Bege with the fact that, invitation from Big Mom aside, he's basically untouchable due to the circumstances behind his "Only Alive" wanted poster (and, by proxy, his wedding). Never forget that Sanji's got a hell of a brain to go along with his monster strength.
  • Chapter 816: Combined with Moment of Heartwarming, the revelation that the entire Mink tribe actually had been hiding Raizo on Zou the whole time, and repeatedly and successfully lied to Jack's face about it despite being gassed, beaten, tortured, and/or dismembered. Not one single person — not even the children — gave him away, on accident or on purpose.
  • Chapter 817: Raizo the ninja is finally shown. While he doesn't look as cool as Usopp, Luffy and Chopper imagined, and he claims that ninjutsu ain't for show... he suddenly surprises the three by disappearing with a Smoke Bomb, doing Self-Duplication, summoning a lot of shurikens that he throws at the wall to create the "Shinobi" kanji, and finally, saying "Nin-nin". The three are completely awestruck because of this.
  • Chapter 818: After over a decade and adventure after adventure, a clear end-goal is laid out for Luffy to become Pirate King. We know the nature of the island of Raftel where One Piece itself rests. The catch? Reaching it requires four poneglyphs, one of which the Minks have, one of which is lost. The other two? In the possession of Big Mom and Kaido. The means to reach Roger's treasure and accomplish his dream are finally clear... and the road to it is as hard as it could possibly be. Luffy's managed to defeat three of the Seven Warlords of the Sea, but now he's going to have to go through two of the Four Emperors! Also consider: Shanks is still out there as well, and one of Luffy's promises was to one day face him as an equal. Finally, we have Blackbeard, who has the same goal as Luffy and is likely after One Piece himself. So to become the Pirate King, Luffy may well have to defeat all four of them. Throw in the wildcards of the World Government and the Revolutionaries, and you start to picture the scope of what's happening. Never mind reaching Raftel and gaining One Piece; just trying to get there will upset the entire world order.
    • Granted, we knew he was going to do so anyway back when he first talked to Law: Fight Kaido because that was the goal of his alliance with Law, Big Mom for Fish-Man Island, Shanks because of the promise, and Blackbeard because he was the one that sent Ace to his death. We just have more reasons for Kaido and Big Mom; freeing Wano and helping the Minks with the former, and saving Sanji with the latter.
    • Not to mention that this is a classic pirate storytelling device taken up to the most spectacular way possible: The Poneglyphs are pieces of a treasure map, and the One Piece, the greatest treasure, will be marked with a big "X." "X" Marks the Spot, indeed.
  • Chapter 820: Villain example. Jack's arrived back at Zou again and he opts to not bother fighting the minks again. Is he afraid that, after getting clobbered by the former fleet admiral, an admiral and three vice-admirals that he and his forces are going to lose against the Minks note ? Nope. He just doesn't want to bother with them, and he's going to attack Zou itself. Let me make this clear: the recently beaten-down Jack has decided to attack the world's biggest, millennia-old elephant just because he can. One of the most gutsy and epic examples of Cutting the Knot ever.
    • Another Crowning Moment of Monster/Awesome from Blackbeard. So, how did Teach manage to usurp Whitebeard's Emperor seat? Did he just chest-thump in his areas and just take them as his own? No. As Marco and the surviving Whitebeard Pirates (and their full allies) ganged on his crew to kill/defeat him for vengeance for Thatch, Ace, and Whitebeard, Blackbeard and his crew show exactly why Teach went to such depths just to recruit them. Marco and the remnants were crushed SO badly, that they were scattered after their defeat, leaving Edward Weevil to pick off all their allies effortlessly, one by one, with Marco disappearing the face of the earth (as of now). Blackbeard has certainly Taken A Level In Badass.
  • Chapter 821: Zunisha proceeds to sink Jack's entire fleet with one single swipe of its trunk. Made even better by Jack's face; you can only see his eye, but it's nonetheless clear that he knows he's screwed.
    • Let's not forget the bit of information about Momonosuke and Luffy: They were the only ones able to hear Zunisha like Oden and Roger. Special props go to Momonosuke as his voice was the one that reached Zunisha, not Luffy!
  • Chapter 823: Vivi jumps from a crow's nest several hundred feet in the air to the ground without getting a scratch or any assistance! Not to mention she was in high heels!
    • While more along the lines of funny, Carrot, a Cute Monster Girl snaps and almost kills Luffy by going for his throat! The reason? For starting to eat her carrot, of all things!
  • Chapter 824: Kaido and Jack definitely have earn their names as Emperor and Calamity, respectively. To elaborate: Even after Jack got hit by a giant elephant's trunk that sunk all of his ships and destroyed his crew, somehow he is not only alive after that, but, despite having Devil Fruit powers, he's alive at the bottom of the ocean! Kaido, on the other hand, shows us a bit of his strength as he sends two poor Mooks flying while he is drunk and it is obvious he took out Eustass Kid, one of the Worst Generation, leading to other implications about Hawkins, Apoo (who has been hinted to have become Kaido's underling), and Killer.
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    Whole Cake Island Arc 
  • Chapter 826: We get to meet two of Sanji's siblings, Vinsmoke Yonji and Reiju, and the two are formidable (especially Reiju). Though Yonji was kicked with enough force to be sent flying, he comes back with no real damage and only being soaked for his trouble. Reiju, on the other hand, decides to help Luffy out and sucks the poison (that was actually killing Luffy, no less) saying it was a "delectable treat" for her, and showing none of the symptoms of the poison after sucking it out of Luffy through a kiss!
  • Chapter 828: The other two Vinsmoke kids, Ichiji and Niji, manage to stop a 2-year war in Brock Colie Island in the span of 4 hours. And manage to get hailed as heroes — this despite the fact that Germa 66 is infamous for being a "force of great evil", something that the island's survivors acknowledge as irony. The biggest kicker is that neither Ichiji nor Niji even consider the war a big deal. They're more worried that stopping here is going to make them late for Sanji's wedding.
  • Chapter 829: We have Jimbei not only returning, but having found the snack that Big Mom wanted (which turned out to be alive and having checked out of a hotel earlier that day) and saving the day from Big Mom's hunger-induced rampage.
  • Chapter 830: The mere act of Jimbei telling Big Mom, a freaking Emperor of the Sea, he's leaving takes serious cajones considering he knew she wouldn't be happy.
  • Chapter 832: Carrot gets a moment of awesome as she deals with Randolph, a member of the Big Mom Pirates, by showing Nami and Chopper that Randolph is not a Mink by using Electro to force Randolph into defense before taking out Randoph's crane with the Electro still charged.
    • Then we get to learn more of the Germa 66: they are a seafaring kingdom made mostly of male soldiers who train day in and out, and are so loyal to the Vinsmoke Family that they will lay their very lives down for them!
    • As if that wasn't enough awesomeness, we then learn that Sanji beat the stuffing out of Yonji, and their father, Vinsmoke Judge, is not happy. Plus, Judge's dream is to reconquer ALL of North Blue...
  • Chapter 833: The fight between Sanji and his father, though it ends in Judge's victory, Sanji would've won had Judge not called on his men and stabbed one of them through while Sanji was distracted.
  • Chap 835: Nami managing to get away from Big Mom's daughter Charlotte Brulee by expanding her Clima Tact and whacking her with it and then managing to get to Luffy through the Seducing Woods.
    • On a meta-level, we're getting to see more and more just how far ahead Oda has thought-ahead on this series. Lola turning out to be one of Big Mom's daughters is one thing, but if you remember that Lola gave the Straw Hats a Vivre Card to Big Mom, it becomes clear ahead of time that their troubles with getting lost in the forest just became quite trivial. It makes one wonder just what else Oda is gonna have jump forward from the past as the series continues.
  • Chapter 836: Luffy jumping in to save Pound from Cracker before getting ready to go all out on a guy who is not only one of Big Mom's right hand men, but has a bounty of 860 million Belli!
  • Chapter 837: Luffy and Nami showing Cracker and Brulee, respectively, that they are not people you should mess with.
    • Also, special shout-out to Urouge, who actually managed to take down one of Big Mom's Commanders by himself, when even the likes of Apoo and Kid were "escorted" out and Capone Bege was forced to marry into the family and become a subordinate!
    • Pound also gets one for saving Nami from Brulee by giving her an epic sucker punch, which Nami follows up by bringing down a giant bolt of lightning! This actually got Brulee to retreat!
    • All this is capped off with Luffy getting really pissed with Cracker for trying to speak for Sanji (the guy really has no idea what Sanji is like). He promptly goes Gear Fourth (despite being pinned down) and smashes Cracker's armor, which Luffy couldn't get through seconds before due to the guy's Haki.
  • Chapter 838:
    • This chapter highlights why Cracker is one of the 3 commanders under Big Mom. The guy that Luffy was fighting? The one that the World Government has a photo of? That's just the ARMOR that Cracker wears using his Bisc Bisc Fruit powers! The guy is capable of making biscuit crackers out of thin air that are capable of taking on Gear Fourth Luffy, and even without the armor he is no slouch!
  • Chapter 839:
    • Sanji demands that Niji finish his meal, saves the female servant that made it from a plate-to-the-face, and delivers a "Reason You Suck" Speech based on his "family's" utter disrespect for both food and subjects. The detail that makes this awesome? His hands are still cuffed with those explosive collars. Even the risk of losing his treasured hands as a chef won't stop him from speaking his mind.
  • Chapter 841:
    • So after the flashback, we return to Luffy in his battle with Cracker. This moment is also a mix of crowning moment of funny as Luffy has been fighting 11 hours by running, fighting, and then EATING the soldiers that Cracker makes to make him run out of stamina!
  • Chapter 842:
    • The chart-topper for this chapter is the newest form for Gear Fourth: Tank Man! It proves to be just what Luffy needs in order to finally send Cracker flying just as the Sweet Commander tries to use the same move that had damaged Bounce/Bound Man. He's now completely immune to sharp objects and attacks, something that consistently damaged him before.
    • Of course, Luffy would be nowhere without Nami, who constantly moistened the soldiers that Cracker made for Luffy to eat.
    • Finally, we have Carrot and Chopper being able to outrun Brulee for the last 11 hours, while wearing ball and chains.
  • Chapter 843:
    • Continuing from where the last chapter left off, It turns out Cracker was launched from the Seducing Woods... all the way to Big Mom's castle! The ministers who find him are unable to believe he was defeated at all, let alone launched all the way from there.
    • Even moreso, after learning of his defeat, Whole Cake Island went into immediate lockdown. That's right, Luffy has managed to intimidate the entire kingdom of an Emperor!
    • Pound makes it clear how badass Big Mom is to Nami: When the previous Sweet Commander (Snack) was defeated, Big Mom sent out Cracker and an entire fleet of her people to deal with the guys that defeated Snack. The catcher? Big Mom manipulated the weather along with sending the fleet and Cracker. Pound even says that Big Mom can summon a powerful thundercloud called Zeus and a miniature sun known as Prometheus from her very hands!
  • Chapter 844:
    • As heart-breaking as it was, Luffy just taking Sanji's blows but still getting back up.
    • Luffy has another great moment, if not an even better one, when he sees through Sanji's jerkass act despite the other's Breaking Lecture — then he yells such things at Sanji's very face (and in front of his family, too) and decides that he won't leave from his place or eat anything until Sanji come back to the Straw Hat Pirates, claiming that no one else can be the cook to the Pirate King. Quite the Character Development there, huh.
    • Plus, Nami slaps Sanji for what he's said and done, clearly knowing that she's risking herself a lot.
  • Chapter 845:
    • Luffy's adamant promise to eat nothing unless it's made by Sanji. Even when the candy rain is falling and he's beating up, he turns away so that none of it goes into his mouth.
    • For a more villainous example, Pound's prediction of an enraged army comes true when we see Bobbin, Amande, Mont-d'Or, and many, MANY other members of Big Mom's crew go out to find Luffy so they can kill him for what he did to Cracker. The crew is even marching in the rain that is provided by Prometheus and Zeus to show how infuriated Big Mom is over her son's defeat.
    • As bad as it is that Luffy is being attacked by the bulk of Big Mom's forces, it is also awesome in it's own way as it shows just how much of a threat he is seen by Big Mom.
  • Chapter 846:
    • Though Luffy is beaten to near death, King Baum is split in half, Nami is captured and her Vivre Card is taken, they were able to hold against half of the army that had come against them. Considering that this is the army sent out by Big Mom to deal with people who have made her mad, it proves to be quite an achievement for half of them to be defeated. Especially if one remembers that Luffy was fighting on fumes.
      • That last line has an added layer of awesomeness to it: Luffy being on fumes means that Nami was the one doing most of the heavy lifting. And this from the girl who's supposedly from the Weak Trio.
    • Then there's a cut to Pedro and Brook, who have remained undetected all the while and are very close to their goal of the Road Phoneglyph. Though they're going to be messing with a Sweet Commander and Baron Tamago, Pedro intends to act as bait for Brook to get the information they need.
    • For a villainous example, the teamwork that the many members of the Big Mom Pirates show when dealing with Luffy and Nami. Major points go to Lady Amande, who is using one of the Meito swords to cut King Baum in half with a slash that slowly splits the Homie in half, Opera who uses a DF that deals with cream and which has such powerful "sweetness" that it burns what it touches, Mont-d'Or who can cast an illusion on others and somehow fly using books, and Galette who stopped Nami from using more thunderbolts on them. Say what you will about them, but the Big Mom Pirates truly do deserve the title of being an Emperor's crew.
  • Chapter 847: Despite being weakened, captured, and trapped in a book prison, Luffy still continues to challenge Big Mom, saying he'll trash everything on Whole Cake Island if he has to, calling Big Mom presumptuous just because she's one of the Four Emperors, vowing that he will take Sanji back and be the one to become Pirate King. Big Mom is noticeably angered by his refusal to quit.
  • Chapter 848: Pedro and Brook are awarded the moment of awesome as they initiate the plan from two chapters ago. Pedro has managed not only to get himself some explosives, but has shown to be a powerful fighter as he cuts down a shield and becomes a terror for those who are pursuing him. Meanwhile, Brook not only managed to get into the treasure room (really ticking off Big Mom with that stunt) and lock out Smoothie from getting inside, but becomes a natural enemy to all of the "Barbarian Chess Soldiers" in the room as he unleashes the power of his soul against them! Soul King Brook truly lives up to his name.
  • Chapter 849: This chapter has quite a few moments of awesome from Brook, Chopper, Carrot, and Pedro.
    • Chopper and Carrot have finally managed to escape! The plan that Chopper created was rather ingenious as well: Using Brulee's own powers against her, Carrot had switched places with a frog that looked like Carrot while she and Chopper acted as if they were captured. Then, when Brulee and her team were about to cook frog!Carrot, the real Rabbit Mink came through the attic and kicked the large and boiling pot against the lot before using Electro to shock the reinforcements. Chopper, meantime, went Monster Point on the giant crocodile Homie and used him to smash the rest of the forces with a powerful over the shoulder toss. Finally, Carrot not only catches up to the one lone member of Brulee's team to escape and prevent him from letting Big Mom know of their escape, leaving them free to use the Mirror World as they so please.
    • Brook, meanwhile, is showing how tough he's gotten over the two years he was training by taking out two members of Big Mom pirates with improved versions of some of his more famed attacks... though his moment is short-lived when he next must face the terror of Big Mom herself!
    • Pedro, in the meantime, has been fighting a large amount of Big Mom's forces when he is cornered by Baron Tamago and more forces. What's the crowning moment of awesome? Pedro, five years ago, had fifty years of his life stolen by Big Mom. She'd originally planned to take seventy years of his life, but he impressed her enough to lower it. He's still putting up one heck of a fight knowing well that he is running on fumes at this point. Plus, five years ago, Baron Tamago received the scar on his face by Pedro himself.
  • Chapter 850:
    • Luffy gets a moment of awesome for willingly ready to tear himself apart to save his friend. He even tells Nami off as he points out (correctly) that they can't rely on anyone and that if they don't get out somehow, Big Mom will come kill them as soon as the wedding is over.
    Luffy: I'm not a man who's gonna end in a place like this!
    • Pedro is awarded the majority of awesome in this chapter. He is fighting toe-to-toe with Baron Tamago, who has a bounty of around 400 Million Belli to his roughly 300 Million Belli, and has promised not to die in Whole Cake Island until Luffy and the others get Sanji back. We also see what led to Pedro losing his eye and how he also lost 50 years to Big Mom, making him quite the badass.
    • Of course, Baron Tamago gets some props for not only being tough enough to fight Pedro, but showing how well prepared he is by wearing insulated pants to stop Electro and being capable of hitting Pedro quite hard before he is somehow sliced in half (and ends up showing to have a DF ability that seems to relate to eggs).
    • Finally, there's Reiju keeping a brave face despite Pudding showing her true nature, and still heavily injured.
    • But the one most deserving of a medal for super special awesomeness is none other than Oda himself. Remember back in Chapter 651, when Big Mom first appeared in person, throwing a tantrum over Luffy eating her candy and declaring war on her? In the middle of all that, we actually get 3 panels focus solely on a strange three-eyed girl who didn't speak and just frowns. With everything else that happened, you'll be forgiven for forgetting about her. Well, Oda never forgets! That's right, in the same chapter that he introduced the Big Bad, he also gave us the Walking Spoiler, the Chekhov's Gunman that only pays off exactly 200 chapters later. Ladies and gentlemen, Oda presents to you none other than Charlotte Pudding.
      • The hint was there all along. Three-eyed first appearance in Chapter 651 was accompanied by a strange shiny, slime puddle, Nitro, the shiny slime Homies, was on Pudding's shoulder the first chapter she showed up.
  • Chapter 851:
    • Brook confronts not only Big Mom but also Prometheus and Zeus. And he refuses to back down from them — he simply says that regardless of what happens between Sanji and the crew, he is taking her Poneglyph. Ladies and gentlemen, the first Straw Hat who's going to fight an Emperor isn't Luffy: it's Brook. Not to mention he disses her by calling her a Young Lady as he prepares to fight.
    • Chopper and Carrot demand answers from Brulee on where they need to go. Surprisingly, she gives up the clue on how to get out of the mirror world, and they ready themselves to find the rest of the group.
    • And then as he's about to start hurting her, Opera finds an unknown figure wandering. Before he can react, he gets a Seiken to the stomach: it's Jimbei! And he's come to rescue Luffy and Nami so they can save Sanji... and even more: to begin the Sun Pirates' rebellion against Big Mom!
  • Chapter 852:
    • Sanji's Mama Bear of a mother, Vinsmoke Sora, gets some major points of awesome. She was willing to take a dangerous drug, in the hopes that her children would not become living weapons. It was this gutsy move that led to Sanji having emotions and a moral compass of his own, and why he is so different from his other siblings.
    • Luffy, of course, gets some of his own: after getting out of the prison book that he and Nami were trapped in, he races to go and find Sanji and starts to beat up anyone that gets in his way (even a large member of the Big Mom Pirates who had previously aided in his defeat).
    • Sanji gets quite a big one when, despite having his heart completely broken after finding out that the girl he was the closest to actually fall for, Pudding, was a Honey Trap, he manages to pick the remains of his heart and wits to take his mindwiped and wounded older sister Reiju to safety and tell her what truly happened to her, plus everything he knows about Pudding's deals. Doing so after such a mind-and-heart-breaking moment? Awesome.
  • Chapter 853:
    • Big Mom apparently had no trouble defeating Brook, but lets on some interesting facts in this chapter. First and foremost, Zeus, Prometheus, and her hat (Napoleon) all have parts of Big Mom's soul, and none of them are affected by Brook's soul powers! Second, she had not only met Roger, but she had planned on going to Raftel when Roger stopped there and figured out the way before she could! Thirdly, the fact that Big Mom may have actually clashed with the former Pirate King is in itself a big CMoA!
    • Pedro doesn't know how to stop being awesome! Just as Baron Tamago becomes Viscount Hiyoko via his Devil Fruit ability, he slices in half again and before Viscount Hiyoko can become Count Niwatori (who is supposed to be far more powerful than the other two) Pedro decides to stop messing around and uses a stash of bombs to blow up not only the still transforming Count Niwatori but all the forces that had been after him.
    • Of course, Luffy is still going from last chapter and had even made it to the third floor before Reiju let him know that Sanji knew the truth. He then jumps out the window into the town with the full intention of waiting for Sanji back in the place he promised, STILL hungry AND refusing to eat anything not made by Sanji!
  • Chapter 854:
    • Props have to be given to Brook despite his current situation. According to Big Mom herself, he was able to deal damage to Napoleon, Prometheus, and Zeus for the first time in their entire existence. Meaning that while Brook may have lost the battle, he was able to do something that no one before him could've possibly ever done!
    • Sanji kicking Bobbin. The Straw Hat cook is making his comeback at last!
  • Chapter 855:
    • So, think you can take on an Emperor while asleep? Good luck with that because Big Mom is just as dangerous asleep as she is awake! Not only did she go out of her way to smash a fly (at full force, no less) but she sleeps with her top three Homies (who also attack at full force). Special mention goes to Napoleon the Bicorn as he actually doubles as a sword!
    • Credit to the Straw Hats and allies for managing to swap Brook with a copy they made out of bones while avoiding all three Homies and Big Mom's attacks.
    • You recall Brook's mission? Well, despite having been beaten, strip-searched, and in the vicinity of Big Mom all this time...our favorite afro skeleton managed to get the rubbings that the group was shooting for! He stored them in his head, the one place Big Mom failed to think of.
  • Chapter 856: Overlapping with Heartwarming, there's the confirmation that Luffy never believed Sanji's mask of jerkassery, which was so good that he managed to fool Nami. How does it show? By him punching Sanji after he explains the reasons why he can't return to the group and urging him to admit his true desires. Congratulations.
  • Chapter 857:
    • Want to know how Capone "Gang" Bege got his nickname? Bege, back in his "younger days," went about being a loose cannon by destroying the rest of the five big mafia families in West Blue. His method? Why kill the leader of the group so he would be chased by the rest of the group, all so that he could laugh at them when they tried to get him in his iron-clad fortress! If that wasn't awesome enough, Bege is aiming to take out Big Mom and take her head during the wedding!
    • In a rare display of intelligence, Luffy manages to swallow his grudge against Bege for nearly killing Pekoms and listens to Jimbei's advice — namely, considering an alliance with the gangster-turned-pirate in order to bolster their fighting strength against Big Mom. This is Monkey D. Luffy we're talking about, here!
  • Chapter 859:
    • Bege should be awarded quite a bit of awesome in this chapter for laying out a plan that he took an entire year to create. To elaborate: he allied himself with Big Mom and married Chiffon, rose through the ranks in her crew, searched for any weaknesses Big Mom might have, and acquired everything he needed to implement an assassination of one of the Four Emperors.
  • Chapter 860:
    • Jimbei showing how awesome he is by telling his friend Aladine how he is ready to die for Luffy and the Straw Hats and how protective he was of his old crew, the Sun Pirates.
    • Meet the last of the 3 Sweet Commanders, Charlotte Katakuri. Not only is he the one with the highest bounty of the three, his bounty is even higher than Jack's billion by 57 million berries more! His introduction comes with a shocking revelation of how powerful he is: his Observation Haki is so great, that he is actually able to see into the future for a few moments. His weapon? A jellybean that he can apparently toss like a bullet to kill anyone at a distance!
    • Though he is rather disturbing, watching Perospero create a functioning escalator from candy is rather awesome.
  • Chapter 862:
    • When Pudding moves to kiss Sanji, flashing a wicked smile as she reveals her third eye, Sanji does the simplest thing that starts throwing Big Mom's entire plan right off the rails: he calls Pudding's much-loathed third eye "beautiful." Instead of shocking Sanji into inaction, she gets shocked instead!
    • Sanji dodging Katakuri's jellybean projectile is quite awesome — Sanji had to avoid both that shot, and the one from the gun held by the priest that was doing the vows.
      • Particularly so when you consider that Katakuri's Observation Haki is so accurate that he can practically see the future. That's right...Sanji's reactions were so sharp that they couldn't be predicted.
      • Plus, these dodges got the priest killed... by Katakuri. Sanji's reflexes actually led to Katakuri screwing up.
    • We finally see what the entrance that Luffy cooked up a few chapters ago entails: Using Brulee's powers, Luffy multiplies himself and bursts out of the cake as he shouts for Big Mom, with a brief Reaction Shot of audiences dropping their jaws, concluding with Big Mom exclaiming a Big "WHAT?!".
    • Perhaps the most awesome thing from this chapter? For all of his vaunted Observation Haki, Katakuri's starting to panic because even though he knows what's coming, he can't do anything to stop it. That bears repeating — Straw Hat/Firetank/Caesar alliance's plan is so audacious that even a billion-plus pirate with the ability to see the damn future can't stop it!
    • Oh, and from a meta-angle: Even after Pudding's true colors have been revealed, The Reveal of her Dark and Troubled Past — and how moved she was by Sanji calling her third eye beautiful — have actually evoked some sympathy for her, Hate Sink though she may be.
  • Chapter 863:
    • Sanji rescuing Pudding from the collapsing wedding cake.
    • Katakuri is shown a rather awesome moment as he prevents Luffy from attacking Mother Caramel's photo by unleashing his Devil Fruit powers. Though it does go into a Crowning Moment of Funny when it is revealed that his fruit is the Mochi Mochi Fruit.
    • Perhaps the most awesome moment in this chapter? Jimbei No Sells Big Mom's Soul Pocus by having no fear of death, and then exclaims that he won't cower in fear of a mere Emperor when he intends to join the future Pirate King. He then officially leaves the Big Mom Pirates! And becomes the first person to ever do so and walk away with their life! Now that is a massive achievement.
    • Brook (in disguise as a Luffy) manages to break the photo despite the chaos. A nice small detail is you can see him in the gaggle of Luffy's as the cake is collapsing on the bottom right of the page, so his appearance isn't out of nowhere.
    • The gambit that the Straw Hats use as a distraction is actually pretty brilliant, whoever designed it. First, the Refuge in Audacity that is coming from inside the cake is great enough that it bypasses Katakuri's clairvoyance, because he doesn't think to check the cake, and he would be confused anyway. But more brilliant is the fact that it's actually a Kansas City Shuffle: Luffy makes all the decoys only to out himself as the real one, getting everyone to ignore his copies, so no one, even Katakuri, will be paying attention when Brook, disguised as Luffy, destroys the photo. Now that's a distraction.
      • There's also another layer of both awesome/funny to this when you realize that even Capone Bege, the man who is behind the whole Big Mom assassination plot in first place, which of course took three years of planning and waiting for the right pieces to come into play in order for this to work, was shocked by Luffy's seemingly idiotic decision of revealing himself amongst all the Luffy clones and "ruining" his tactical advantage (even pulling a rather epic Jaw Drop in the process). Yea, Luffy's gambit was so good and well executed that Bege himself didn't even realize it!
  • Chapter 864:
    • Sanji is still trying to reach Pudding, still believing in her despite her still trying to shoot him. There's also this exchange:
      Pudding: Aren't you shocked?! Aren't you disillusioned?! Don't worry—you'll die very soon!! I've fooled plenty of people before, just like this!!!
      Sanji: Even yourself, Pudding?
    • We get to see 2 of Big Mom's kids in action. Namely Charlotte Daifuku, the 3rd Son and the man who ate the Hoya Hoya no Mi, and Charlotte Oven, the 4th Son and the man who ate the Netsu Netsu no Mi. Daifuku can summon a powerful genie out of himself to fight on his behalf (like a Stand, pretty much), while Oven can make his body hot to touch, so defending against him would be tricky.
    • Bege delivers what is the best line to Katakuri in this chapter as he reveals his allegiance to Luffy.
    Bege: You can see a bit into the future. That's all. But that ain't some special privilege. Everyone has an equal right to change the future!!!
    • Seeing Vinsmoke Judge pathetically break down in tears in the face of imminent death while being mocked by everyone around him — while admittedly disturbing — is extremely satisfying because he most definitely had it coming.
  • Chapter 865: We are at last shown a real, honest-to-God glimpse of a fabled island. None other than Elbaf, land of the giants.
    • Big Mom's Conqueror's Haki-empowered bellow is so mighty it wipes out the entire wedding hall and brings down everybody who can hear it. The scream alone takes up about a third of the chapter's pages.
    • Sanji using Diable Jambe to break his family out of their candied bonds and then standing above the group (on the table) who has done nothing but kick him while he was down. To repeat, Sanji is now assuming a position of utter dominance towering over them, the people who treated him lower than an ant's belly. Better yet, he's doing this to save them, showing his compassionate nature that Reiju is always proud of.
      • It can count as a Moment of Awesome for Sora as well, as she the one who sacrificed herself to ensure her sons still retained their humanity and compassion. If it wasn't for her, the Vinsmokes would all have bullets in their heads, and Pudding would have succeeded in killing Sanji as well had he reacted as she expected him to. Ultimately, it was not Judge's social darwinist teachings, but Sora and her motherly kindness that saved the Vinsmoke bloodline from extinction, and saved the day for everyone.
    • Bege, Vito, and Gotti all surround Big Mom and prepare to shoot her up with a triple helping of lethal poison. Just the sheer idea that these three are in a perfect position to finish her off and nobody can stop her is overwhelming, because they literally hold the power to tip the scales of the world's rule in their fingertips, and we may be about to witness the second big upset since Blackbeard and his followers gunned down Whitebeard.
  • Chapter 866:
    • One of the biggest moments of awesome? Mother Caramel stopping an execution of some of the former Giant Pirates. The heavens actually parted for her as she pointed out how if the giants were killed Elbaf would retaliate. One could really call her a woman of the cloth after that knowing divine intervention helped her save the giants from the gallows.note  It's because of her they aren't at war with the rest of the world.
    • You know the utopia Big Mom wants to make? That was actually Mother Caramel's dream, and while it is also heart-warming, it is rather awesome to see that Big Mom has kept Mother Caramel's dream going despite everything.
    • For a darker turn of events, we get to see how dangerous Big Mom really was back during her time as a child. Keep in mind that Big Mom was about five years old and she was tearing up all of Elbaf for some sweets! It got so bad that one of the heroes of the giant people, Jorul, had to step in.
  • Chapter 867:
    • Child Linlin was so awesome that she could tank a giant's equally giant's sword with just her hand, breaking it in the process, and then slammed that giant to the ground. She outright killed Jorul, one of the giant heroes. As a 5-year old.
  • Chapter 868:
    • How did Charlotte Linlin get her Devil Fruit powers, you ask? She ate the person who held them last... by accident. Apparently, if waiting for the user to die doesn't suit you, you can cannibalize your Devil Fruit powers in the One Piece world. Ohhhhh, dear Christ above...
    • Charlotte Linlin gets one for obtaining at least a 50 million berry bounty as a child in a deliberate manner (while others like Robin earned their childhood bounties unwillingly), which then rocketed up to 500 million as a young woman, by which time she had already outclassed the entire Cipher Pol as a threat. This was long before she became an Emperor, too. Who knows how high her current bounty is?
    • The Big Mom pirate's head chef, Streusen, surprisingly was awesome. He found young Linlin, a 6-year-old who'd just unwittingly cannibalized her mother figure and friends, and then basically raised her to be what she is today by enabling and encouraging her worst habits. Who would have thought that of a simple head chef?
    • Big Mom proved simply too powerful to kill. All she had to do was scream hard enough and all three of Caesar's gas rockets were totally obliterated. And the same scream shattered the escape mirror. Katakuri then supplies mochi earplugs to everyone incapacitated. Final result? The assassination plan is screwed. Which means brown pants galore for the entire allied force.
    • Not to be outdone, Capone Bege got one spectacular moment of his own: The Big Father. Put simply, he revealed the castle fortification powers of his Shiro Shiro no Mi work on the outside just as well as it does on the inside, granting him a mighty transformation into a colossal castle titan!
  • Chapter 869: This chapter, amidst all of the chaos, is a gigantic chapter of awesome for Sanji and Reiju (and to an extent, their whole family):
    • As the allied force is escaping into The Big Father, Nami, Carrot, and Chopper get ambushed by three different officers of Big Mom's crew (with Nami being taken by Smoothie, notably, thus putting her into even more danger). Sanji glares down his bastard of a father from atop a table and wordlessly orders him to rescue them with a simple finger point. And Judge complies. Don't ever fuck with Sanji again, Vinsmoke Judge.
    • As for said Germa commanders, they don their armour and immediately get to work rescuing the Straw Hats and Carrot, with Reiju actually causing damage to and poisoning Smoothie (at least for a moment). Bear in mind that Charlotte Smoothie has a bounty close to a billion berries.
    • And finally, to top it all off, Sanji helps Reiju with the save by catching Nami as she falls, complete with a Bridal Carry.
    • Just when you think our allies have an edge, Big Mom pirates quickly retaliate: Perospero blocks Big Father's cannon shots from harming Big Mom with his candy(!), Katakuri clogs the cannons with his mochi, Perospero immobilizes the castle with his candy, and to top it all off, Big Mom herself regained her composure and starts assaulting the castle, which slowly hurts Bege himself.
  • Chapter 870: The fact that Sanji grabs Judge by the collar and pulls him down to look him eye-to-eye is pretty awesome all by itself. He's talking to the man who's looked down on him all his life and always seen him as worthless, and he's making sure that Judge is gonna listen this time. The crowning moment in the line-up of Break the Haughty that Judge has been subjected to.
    Sanji: "I ran away from Germa 13 years ago. And Vinsmoke Sanji died at sea. That's what you wanted, remember? So admit it!!! You are not......my father!!! Vinsmoke Judge!!! Don't ever show your face around me again!!!"
    Judge: "I understand... Then you have my word......that I will never approach you or the East Blue again!!"
    • Bege plans to return to his normal form so that Caesar can carry him out of the place, as (as Nami pointed out) they have completed all their objectives (sans assassinating Big Mom, which is a failure). But the Big Mom Pirates outside will bombard them if they do... and then Judge volunteers himself and his children to cover their escape with all their might. And as they proceed to do so, they manage to block all of the enemies' gunfires by their own bodies.
    • No mention of how Sanji and Luffy both jump out and save Reiju from Big Mom's attack?
  • Chapter 871: Where. Do. We. BEGIN?
    • Well, might as well start with the villains. Big Mom demonstrates how much further Luffy has to go before he can become the Pirate King. Specifically, by No Selling Gear Fourth. No, she didn't get sent flying without taking any damage. No, she didn't engage Luffy in a Pummel Duel while he was in Gear Fourth. She just uses Haki on her arm (JUST ONE ARM) and easily blocks Luffy's attack!
      • This bears closer examination: Doflamingo was sent flying across Dressrosa after taking a blow from Luffy's Kong Gun. Furthermore, one of Big Mom's top lieutenants, despite their best armor, could only take (at best) two or three punches from Gear Fourth. But Big Mom just tanked it like it was nothing. Clearly, the Four Emperors have earned every ounce of their reputation.
    • Expanding on this, it's implied that Kaido's just as dangerous — if not more. After Luffy declares his intent to bring down Kaido first, Big Mom refers to Kaido as "that thing," suggesting that she's fought Kaido before and considers his strength inhuman. This, coming from a woman who rampaged through a country of giants and killed one of their most legendary warriors... when she was five years old. And she was born a freak of nature with insanely abnormal strength. Not to mention that she's got a Devil Fruit that's essentially a Game-Breaker. And she still considers Kaido a monster (after all, he's viewed as unkillable — and if the person holding the one Devil Fruit that can rip entire lifespans out of people can't faze him to take his life, he's definitely something else entirely). Clearly, Luffy needs to push his strength even further, and soon.
    • The rest of Big mom's crew annihilate Sanji and The Vinsmokes. It happens off-screen, but it's implied that the whole thing took just under a minute.
    • Vinsmoke Judge. Jerkass, Abusive Parent, and Combat Pragmatist though he may be, he still has admirable pride in his nation and people. He attacks Big Mom head-on, knowing that the best he could do was buy time for his family and the Straw Hats to escape. Why? Because he promised to. For all his flaws, Judge will stand by his word.
      • In further detail, the way Big Mom dispatches Judge is nothing short of Badass. She literally EATS his spear, then hoist him up like a child, summons Zeus around her left hand and slams down a FREAKING THUNDERBOLT on the poor guy. On his HEAD, no less. It completely shatters his warbird helmet and leaves him totally out of commission.
    • Hats off to Big Mom herself, whose freakish strength is enough on its own to kill with one spank, let alone a punch, let alone a Haki-infused one. In one strike, she sufficiently took all the fight out of Luffy. And on the opposing side, Luffy came out totally unscathed, but totally exhausted. If Luffy went into this battle fresh, the outcome could have been totally different — but because things didn't go as planned, he was drained at the starting gate. Had he not come off of an extensive standstill with a Sweet Commander that caused him to burn through Gear Fourth twice, a duel with Sanji, and a blitz from all of the Big Mom Pirates where he lost by letting himself stay in one place instead of going on the run, he would have been able to put up a good fight. He's almost to Emperor level.
    • On the side of the heroes (and anyone teamed up with them): The fact that Luffy even tried to fight Big Mom head on counts. He was warned by Capone that outside of the plan he concocted, there's no way to even harm Big Mom. Sure, it was in response to goading from Big Mom, but Luffy figured that she deserves at least "one good punch" and went Gear Fourth to give her one, exhausting his remaining Haki in the process. And no, Luffy didn't seem to be expecting to hurt Big Mom — this was his way of flipping one of the Four Emperors the bird.
    • At the very end of the chapter, when all seems lost, the Chekhov's Gun first armed during the denouement chapters of the Fish-Man Island saga finally gets fired — The Tametebako is finally opened. The ensuing explosion is massive enough to destabilize the summit of the Whole Cake Chateau, causing the whole thing to start slowly tipping over...
      • This moment also applies to Luffy, who had set the ball rolling for this moment when he gave Big Mom the Fish-Man Island treasure. Luffy had inadvertently started a domino effect that resulted in the complete destruction of Big Mom's castle!
  • Chapter 872: Streusen saves not only everyone at the party but the entire town below by turning Whole Cake Chateau into a giant sponge cake.
    • Even though the assassination plot fell apart, it still did had a huge impact. Whole Cake Island is effectively in ruins. And Morgans definitely plans on going public with the event. Provided he doesn't twist the news or Stussy tells him to chalk it up for the World Government, now both Capone Bege and Luffy have a spectacular accomplishment on their resumes as pirates, and will be a wakeup call to the New World that two of the Supernovas are no longer a laughing matter — they just screwed over one of the four most powerful pirates there is, and as an unexpected side-effect, wrecked her headquarters. This is something only another Emperor could dream of doing, which means they DO pose a danger against the Emperors now.
  • Chapter 873:
    • The Charlotte Family scored some major awesome points for how efficently they handled both Big Mom and the Straw Hats. This also make Oda-sama all the more awesome for continuing to pump out such dynamics, multi-dimensional vilains.
    • After some initial panicking among the younger siblings, the eldest son, Perosprero, steps up and tells Big Mom the outragous lie that they have prepared another cake for her and the Straw Hats stole it while scared shitless and not knowing if she'll be able to hear him in her crazed state. That's Nerves of Steel!
    • Katakuri, the second son, is the de-facto Leader in his mother's absence showing that in the Big Mom Pirate, Asskicking Equals Authority. His determinnation to stop Luffy before he become too big a threat is also an awesome moment for Luffy as well, his precognition ability means his prediction will most likely come true.
    • Pudding deserves a mention as well for her confidence in her Supreme Chef skill and in her ability to capture and force Chiffon, who is still with Bege and his gang, to cooperate.
    • Head Chef Straussen was ridiculously tough. Remember, the guy was middle aged when Big Mom was five. He is probably in his hundreds by now and he survived the fall that all the Badasses of Big Mom Pirates thought they could not survive.
    • You remember how Amande confiscated Nami's copy of Big Mom's Vivre Card? Well, Nami reveals that as a precaution, she had cut the card in two just before the encounter with Big Mom's army. Talk about Crazy-Prepared! Even moreso, it allows her to command a revived King Baum again.
  • Chapter 874:
    • Big Mom, having lived in Elbaf for a time, is actually capable of using some of their techniques! Specifically, using Napoleon, she unleashes a variant version of the move that Dorry and Broggy used and it causes massive damage (including cutting off some of King Baum's body, cutting through a mountain/building of Whole Cake Island, and tearing the sea in half).
    • Nami managed to lure Zeus away from Big Mom's side by feeding him with thunder clouds made from her Clima Tact, and it was apparently so rich and silky that Zeus can't get enough of it. Combined with Nami's compliments, Zeus was nearly tamed into Nami's side.
    • King Baum shows that while he may be a Homie, while he may have been cut in half, while he has for all purposes pretty much been a punching bag for just about everyone, he is determined to stay alive for his fiancé, Lady Tree. He takes damage from Big Mom, battles against his subordinates in the Seducing Woods, and still is determined to live even when Prometheus unleashes his fury on him.
    • The Big Mom Pirates are showing how tough and smart they are these last few chapters. With 10,000 strong soldiers waiting in the Mirror World to be deployed, Katakuri is waiting for Luffy's group at the Sunny knowing that while Big Mom is still after them, he is not giving them a chance to get away.
    • It's been established that Pudding's a master of deceit. But her latest deception takes the cake — she convinced her siblings last chapter that she planned to capture Chiffon and force her help in baking a cake for Big Mom...when in reality, Pudding wants to bake said cake so Sanji and the Straw Hats can get away.
  • Chapter 875:
    • In the cover story, Bartolomeo was promoting Straw Hats by selling stickers when they wandered right into Shank's territory back at the cover of Chapter 873. On this cover, Bartolomeo and his pirate crew proceeded to set the Red Hair Pirates flag ablaze to plant their own logo, with the townspeople watching in horror and their jaws dropped.
    • It looks like Brook may have to share the MVP award this arc; Nami, by manipulating Zeus with Black Balls, manages to plant a Weather Egg inside of him (if not countless numbers of them), which she uses to fry Big Mom. Once again, for those in the back: Nami is the first hero in the series to cause significant, lasting physical damage to an Emperor of the Seas, who, up until then, had been virtually invincible. Not Luffy, not Zoro. Nami.
    • Speaking of Brook, he and Chopper get their own moment too, when they engage in battle with the Big Mom Pirates on the Sunny to reclaim their ship. Worth noting that one of the guys they're facing off against is Katakuri — one of the Sweet Commanders. But this is the sort of balls we've come to expect of Brook who took on an Emperor.
  • Chapter 876:
    • Big Mom continues to show how ridiculously powerful the Four Emperors are. Remember that enormous thunderbolt from Zeus that Nami hit her with last chapter? Which was powerful enough to make a giant crater in the ground? Big Mom is COMPLETELY UNFAZED by it.
      • How does Big Mom get out of the crater? No, she doesn't jump or climb out. She just moves against the wall and literally walks through the ground!
    • Pudding demonstrates that her memory-altering Devil Fruit has dangerous applications in an actual battle: by screwing with the memories of the Seducing Forest, she makes them part ways to let the Straw Hats through. That's right — Pudding's Devil Fruit power can affect something that was created by Big Mom, one of the Four Emperors.
    • Chiffon gets some props of her own for keeping Pudding on track despite the latter's developing split personality.
    • We've seen Sanji do some pretty awesome cooking in the past, but when he declares they're gonna make a cake so good that it'll make Big Mom faint, you just know their cooking session is gonna be something pure awesome.
  • Chapter 877:
    • Charlotte Perospero spends basically the entire chapter showing that, despite his somewhat frail appearance compared to some of his siblings, he's a force to be reckoned with. He quickly has both Brook and Chopper incapacitated and minutes from death, he uses his ability to create a giant iron maiden, he once again stops the Straw Hats in their tracks, by locking the Thousand Sunny in candy, and when rushed by Pedro, a combat hardened an experienced Mink with a bounty over 300 million, he blocks and neutralizes him in seconds, before revealing his own bounty of 700 million, one of the highest confirmed bounties in the series.
    • The heroes are no slouch either. When Perospero tries to encase Luffy and co in his candy Iron Maiden, Luffy just melts it with his Red Hawk attack, before taking Katakuri on. When Perospero zips back to the shore so he can encase the Thousand Sunny from a safe distance, Pedro is right behind him and reveals that he still has the dynamite strapped to his chest from when he fought Tamago!
  • Chapter 878:
    • Luffy reminds us why he's the captain. After the explosion frees the ship, Luffy realizes that even if they manage to escape, Katakuri is still on board and someone will probably die in the fight. So what does he do? Leave everything up to his crew and drags both himself and Katakuri into the Mirror-World, smashing the mirror behind them! Simultaneously protecting his crew from the two-man war, taking the second largest threat out of the picture, and finally give himself the fight he had been craving the entire arc. And given the state of the situation, he came up with all of that in the span of a few seconds.
  • Chapter 879:
    • Give a big hand to the Big Mom Pirates! Once again, we are reminded of just how extreme the power of an Emperor's crew is, and how long the Straw Hats still have to go to reach their level:
      • As Jimbei was giving a speech about how the enemy fleet can appear at anytime, a single enemy walked through the mist: Big Mom herself, walking on water and screaming for wedding cake with her Nightmare Face on. Even Jimbei was panicked!
      • A closer inspection reveals that it's actually Perospero (who was BLOWN UP two chapters ago, mind you!), acting as a glorified taxi driver for his mother, all the while making a new arm out of candy to replace the one he lost and contemplating revenge.
      • The most extreme demonstration of power belongs to Katakuri, shown when he and Luffy duke it out in the Mirror World. Every move Luffy pulls on him, Katakuri does it better. It gets to the point where Luffy whips out his Elephant Gun, but Katakuri makes his mimicked version of the move MONSTROUSLY larger and effortlessly thumps him across the realm. This kind of Curb-Stomp Battle hasn't happened to Luffy since Sabaody, where he faced an ADMIRAL!
    • Jimbei has shown himself to be quite a fit for the long-vacant position of Vice Captain with the way he both reprimands and encourages the other Straw Hats after Pedro's sacrifice. His words roused Chopper and Brook out of their sorrow and sprung them to action!
  • Chapter 880:
    • Sanji shows off his cooking skills by making an exact copy of the original recipe for the wedding cake just from the smell.
    • Once again, Big Mom continues to impress and show off the tremendous power of one of the Four Emperors by using her Devil Fruit to create a gigantic tidal wave much like what Whitebeard did. Sure she actually used Perospero's Candy Slug (the same one they use to walk on the seas in the first place), but still.
  • Chapter 881:
    • If you wondered what Jimbei's role on the crew was going to be, this chapter makes it unquestionable: helmsman. So the Thousand Sunny is about to be swallowed up by the tidal wave Homie, and used up all the cola in the last Coup de Burst, you say? The crew is now host to someone whose entire species rides giant waves for fun. Jimbei gets behind the wheel of the ship, and effortlessly and gracefully pilots the Sunny through the green room of the wave before it breaks. That is, to say, he surfs the Sunny through the killer wave on reflex, like a fish to water... because he is one!
    • Although unclear, from what the scenes of this chapter suggest, Katakuri accidentally bore witness to a moment of his own. When Katakuri kicked Luffy in the middle of holding a mirror fragment, Katakuri also kicked the mirror fragment into Luffy's mouth. You heard right — Katakuri made Luffy eat MIRROR. An already jagged mirror fragment which shattered worse from the impact of the kick. For a few moments afterward, Luffy is stuck reeling as he's forced to hack the broken bits back up.
  • Chapter 882:
    • So how much of a badass is Katakuri Charlotte? Well, he's Awakened his Devil Fruit powers (like Doflamingo), has a spear named "Mole" (or "Earth Dragon" depending on the reading), and has had Luffy on the ropes for all this time. However, his sister decides to hype him up even further by stating that Katakuri has NEVER (as in not even to rest) allowed his back to touch the ground and is considered amongst all of the children of Big Mom to be the most perfect of them all.
    • As much as the Vinsmokes are scum (sans Reiju), it was pretty awesome to see that they completely curbstomped the squad of Big Mom Pirates that attacked them. Bonus points for trying to fake their defeat to Mont-d'Or.
  • Chapter 883:
    • Luffy finally manage to get a good hit in on Katakuri, and at the same time, hints that he finally figured out Katakuri's weakness.
    Luffy: You're definitely super strong...but you're not invincible!
  • Chapter 884:
    • The first few pages opens with Luffy absolutely pummeling Katakuri, who he couldn't even touch beforehand. Luffy even taunts him in between blows.
    Luffy: I thought you were invincible!
    • Then Katakuri quickly regained his composure and punted Luffy again, this time in Gear Fourth. For the record, this is the first time Gear Fourth was overwhelmed in a head-on fight.
    • We finally find out how both the Straw Hats and the Firetank Pirates managed to escape detection from the Territorial Sea Slugs: Charlotte Praline tapped into her mermaid heritage and roped them all into a song about enjoying a holiday and not working. "All" as in "all the slugs in the entirety of the Totto Land archipelago"!
  • Chapter 885:
    • Sanji almost accidentally killed one of Big Mom's chefs... because his whipped cream is so freaking delicious the man almost entered Nirvana when he tasted it.
  • Chapter 886:
    • When Oven tries to kill Chiffon, Pound immediately dashes towards him to attack him. Granted, the poor guy is hopelessly outmatched and he knows it, but he still deserves credit for having the balls to charge against someone he knew was miles stronger, so as to protect his daughter.
    • Sanji sees the above moment, and dashes at lightning-fast speed to send Oven away with a Diable Jambe-enhanced kick, simultaneously saving Pound from Oven's counterattack, saving Chiffon from Oven,and protecting his identity because he went too fast for most people to see.
    • When Oven catches up to Chiffon anyway, he tries to get Bege to surrender by threatening her. Just when Bege arrives and it seems he will surrender, he instead shoots and nails Oven in the head with an explosive round, as his crew and son cheer. The fact that he shot him with a pistol from a very far distance makes it even more impressive.
    Bege: "Take a good look, Pez. That's the way your Daddy lives."
    • Chiffon also deserves credit: she's been caught by her much more powerful half-brother, she's completely and absolutely screwed and clearly knows that Big Mom will kill her... and yet she urges Bege and his crew to leave her behind, telling them that she freely decided to help with the cake and that, even when she knows how badly her mother wants her dead, she doesn't want him to get caught with her, and only asks him to avenge her upcoming death. That takes guts.
    • The ending. Luffy has come to a realization that the only way he can take down Katakuri is if he learns how to use Katakuri's ability to look into the future with sharpened Observation Haki]]. A prospective battle of trump cards is about to begin, akin to the match between Goku and Hit in Dragon Ball Super where Goku uses Kaio-Ken in Super Saiyan Blue to outrun Hit's time-skipping ability.
  • Chapter 887:
    • The fact that Bege's ship, Nostra Castello, is an amphibious ship! Meaning that Bege can fight on land and on sea (something that not many ships have been capable of doing). Bege even uses his ship to run over Oven as he rescues Chiffon and the rest, and boasts to Oven about how he never explained this because... well, why would he tell his secrets to people that he's been planning to backstab from the beginning?!
    • For a villainous example, the stuff that Oven pulls off on this chapter. He has the gall to try and stop an amphibious ship (he fails, but he still tried), using his Devil Fruit to boil a large portion of the sea (which is near instant as Bege barely made out of the harbor when Oven caught up), and taking a blow to the head from Pound (granted, Oven is a lot tougher, but he was still conscious while he was paying attention to Bege).
    • Despite knowing full well what will happen to him, Pound sacrifices himself to save everyone on Bege's ship from being boiled by Oven and enable them to escape. He spends his last moments smiling, calmly fixing his clothes, and thinking of how much he loves his daughters and is happy that Chiffon has a good life now.
  • Chapter 888:
    • This chapter has far more awesome than one should be able to handle. Firstly, we have a peek at Luffy and his battle with Katakuri, who gives Luffy the options of being defeated or joining the Big Mom Pirates. Luffy's answer?
      Luffy: I came back to beat you!
      Katakuri: That wasn't an option!
    • This is then followed by Carrot's transformation under the moonlight into what is referred to as a Sulong (or a Moon Lion), immediately after telling the Straw Hats that she will handle things and gazing into the moon ends up with much longer hair and extra poofy tail with electricity running through said tail. With pure white hair, sharp claws, and red eyes, Carrot immediately jumps towards the fleet before the Straw Hats and she's able to avoid falling into the water towards her opponents. She then uses what looks to be a Flash Step to avoid getting shot at, causes havoc as she fights her way through Big Mom's crew, and finally rips apart the wheel at breakneck speeds to end it all with a smile.
    • What's even more amazing is this is another instances of "ODA NEVER FORGETS". The full moon was mentioned as early as Chapter 805, when Luffy first landed on Zou, where Wanda first mentioned the full moon when Pedro appeared, then gets a ominous Call-Back in Chapter 811, where it's stated it's lucky the full moon is covered by the clouds, and Chapter 886 and Duke Dogstorm mentioned the Minks "true form". Sure enough, those Story Bread Crumbs paid off big time this chapter.
  • Chapter 889:
    • Between Carrot's transformation, her baiting Daifuku's genie into Friendly Fire, and Brook helping on the side, Daifuku's entire fleet is either de-helmed or decimated, giving the Straw Hats a huge hole in the blockade to escape through. Not bad for an undermanned crew outnumbered 50 ships to 1.
    • Sadly, the above is cut short by Big Mom's own awesome moment: Prometheus and Zeus have caught up to her, and she proceeds to do her best impression of a One-Winged Angel Fusion Dance with them. Napoleon becomes an even bigger cutlass that now has a jagged mouth in the blade, Prometheus has transformed into Big Mom's own flaming hair, and Zeus is now ferrying her again. The chapter ends with the cliffhanger of this monstrous Big Mom landing on the deck of the Sunny.
  • Chapter 890:
    • The Straw Hats have done the impossible: they pushed off Big Mom.
      • How they did it deserves special mention, and much further elaboration for each of the Straw Hats.
      • Jimbei fully shows that he can use Armament Haki, (for those who had their doubts), and tanks Napoleon, blocking it from destroying the Sunny and NOT becoming Half the Man He Used to Be. Despite this, he's still flung off the ship due to Big Mom's obscene strength. But it only takes him seconds to recover and he's able to use his Fish-man Karate to douse Prometheus (saving the Sunny from being set on fire). Not stopping there, he then delivers a Megaton Punch right to Big Mom's gut, sending her flying off the ship!
      • Chopper uses Guard Point for the first time in ages, successfully saving Nami from being crushed by Big Mom's fist!
      • Brook enacts Taking the Bullet for Nami to No-Sell Zeus's lightning. Think about this for a second. He out-sped a lightning bolt fired at close range in order to protect his crewmate! Following this he drops his, "Can I see your panties?" line to Big Mom, solely, (we hope), to catch her off guard and make her pause, even for a split-second. It works, and Brook capitalizes on this to utterly Speed Blitz Zeus, cutting the thundercloud in half.
      • Finally, Nami uses this moment to force Zeus to discharge all of his lightning directly into Big Mom again. She also captured Zeus afterward for good measure (while giving him the ultimatum to be her servant or be destroyed), depriving Big Mom of her speed advantage (though unfortunately she can still ride Prometheus to stay on their tail).
      • Points still need to be given to Big Mom, who despite getting hit by Jimbei's strongest attack and Zeus' thunderbolt, still seems to be mostly fine and keeps chasing the Sunny. And this is after all the poundings she took earlier that day and having been starving for 8 hours. Once again, proving the Four Emperors are ridiculously powerful.
    • To echo the similar awesome moment from Chapter 875, because the echo is significant: Nami is the first hero in the series to cause significant, lasting physical damage to an Emperor of the Seas, who, up until then, had been virtually invincible. Not Luffy, not Zoro. Nami. Why is this echo significant? Because this time the damage visibly stuck. Big Mom shrugged off the first discharge without any sort of mark of damage on her at all. She didn't shrug off this one.
  • Chapter 891: Sanji has completed the cake, at last. And right on the nick of time, too, considering that the cake stopped Big Mom from catching up and destroying the Sunny.
    • Luffy, meanwhile, is in the midst of building up his Obvservational Haki even further, and in order to do so, he's not using Gear Fourth to fight back. Hit after hit, he's being pounded in by Katakuri... yet he hasn't fallen. The awesome comes when you realize that Luffy is actually beginning to dodge attacks Katakuri is throwing at him. Katakuri, the man whose own Observatoinal Haki allows him to see into the future. Yes.
  • Chapter 892: The entirety of the Big Mom Pirates are considering the Straw Hats to be dangerous enemies with Oven insisting they not underestimate them and Katakuri thinking that he has to defeat Luffy soon before he reaches his level.
  • Chapter 893: Katakuri figuring out that the reason Luffy has been lagging in their fight is because his brat of a sister Flambe has been interfering. He positively flips on her, stabs himself to even the odds between Luffy, and then when Flambe makes fun of Kata's face, he and Luffy combine their Conqueror's Haki to knock her and her toadies out (said Haki also fractures the Mirror World), and then Katakuri openly declares Luffy as someone who he's proud to call a Worthy Opponent.
    • The way in which Katakuri evens the playing field brings to mind Zoro slicing open his side against Cabaji, all the way back in the Buggy arc. Oda never forgets.
  • Chapter 894: The battle between Luffy and Katakuri continues for nearly two hours. At the end of the chapter, after being pummeled to the ground by Katakuri, Luffy vows to end the battle and reveals a new form for Gear Fourth, Snakeman.
    • Meanwhile, a truly massive number of the Big Mom Pirates gather to fight the Straw Hats with some of them noting that for the amount of force they're assembling, they expected an army numbering in the tens of thousands, not less than ten pirates.
      • In two words, Snack amplifies this kind of threat by a great deal: "Worst Generation," suggesting that EVERY member of this notorious group is this dangerous. Snack is the only named member of the Big Mom Pirates with firsthand experience against a Worst Generation member prior to Luffy's attack, so he knows what they're capable of.
  • Chapter 895:
    • Snakeman is revealed, and it can be considered an upgraded version of Gear Second, as Luffy is now immensely faster. Katakuri is also briefly fooled by Luffy's Python attack (the chasing punch he used on Doflamingo back on Dressrosa), and even after adjusting his Combat Clairvoyance, Luffy's attacks are simply so blindingly fast that he can't avoid them all.
    • Granted, Katakuri is no slouch and continues to pummel Luffy, but they are now evenly matched. The entire chapter is a brutal slugfest between the two of them, ending on a Cliffhanger with the two clashing with their strongest moves.
  • Chapter 896:
    • Both Luffy's and Katakuri's attacks connected, and for a tense few minutes it looks like it was a Double Knockout, followed by both of them getting back up, only for one to fall back down after a brief exchange of words. The battle is over.
      Katakuri: Huff... Will you be back... someday... Huff!! to topple Big Mom...? Huff, huff...
      Luffy: Huff... of course I will! I'm the man... who will be King of the Pirates!!!
      Katakuri: ... You're looking quite far into the the future!! Koff [falls onto his back]
    • The fact that Luffy's crewmates are more concerned with whether or not Luffy took into account the time, or forgot the plan, than with whether or not he'll lose.
    • The sheer realization that Luffy actually took down his first billion-berry pirate monstrosity. He actually did it all by himself, no outside assistance from anyone. And he beat a guy who has a bounty even higher than Jack's, and it took a giant thousand-year-old elephant to beat him.
      • Luffy didn't (and arguably, couldn't) defeat Katakuri with brute force like so many of his previous adversaries. He simply kept getting up until Katakuri, exhausted and with nothing left to prove to himself or anyone else, finally let himself fall. This may be the crowning example of the power of Luffy's sheer will and determination.
  • Chapter 897:
  • Chapter 898:
    • The battle has begun, and Germa 66 is delivering a proper trashing. Not only do they reveal they confronted the squad sent to kill them (Nusstorte and his fleet) and tossed them into the sea, the Vinsmoke siblings all get to shine while carving a massive path through the Big Mom pirates just to let Sanji and Luffy escape — Ichiji gouges a hole in Charlotte Oven with his light powers; Yonji uses a mechanical arm to turn one of the Charlotte siblings into a human wrecking ball; Niji uses his own Super Speed to carry Sanji and Luffy by himself, electrocuting anyone who got in the way, before delivering them a powerful kick back to the Thousand Sunny; and Reiju blows a cloud of poison on some men who try to shoot down an airborne Sanji and Luffy with tear gas, allowing her brother and his captain to fly back to their crew uninterrupted. The Big Mom pirates' reputation is going to have a hard time recovering after all is over.
  • Chapter 899: The interventions continue, and even as the Big Mom pirates catch up and start having a chance to even avenge themselves things get worse and worse for the Big Mom Pirates.
    • First of all, Judge makes his entrance and opens fire on Smoothie's fleet. Even as he rants and raves about how Luffy came back and caused all this chaos for a weakling and failure, he still intervenes on their behalf.
    • And just as things are looking darkest, with the group close enough that Daifuku can start directly besieging the Thousand Sunny with his genie, an enormous bulge beneath the water... Who would've thought we'd be happy to see Wadatsumi come back, even promising to give endless grief to anyone who troubles his boss? Jimbei jumps into the water to confirm, and yes: The Sun Pirates have come by to say goodbye to their captain before he joins the Straw Hats, and fight as a crew one more time.
    • Also counts as a combined Moment of Funny and Heartwarming: Luffy completely ignores Judge's rant about Sanji and thanks him for the help, leaving Judge completely flabbergasted and causing Jimbei to burst out laughing. When Sanji tries to tell Luffy what his father really meant, Luffy asks him why is Judge talking about his son's good traits.
  • Chapter 900: One goes to Oda himself for making it look like the Straw Hats were home free in the last chapter and the start of this one, only for everything to flip upside-down to where it looks like nobody we want to win is going to pull through, and then have the balls to go on break and blue-ball the audience with the manga's greatest cliffhanger ever.
  • Chapter 901:
    • What happened in the last chapter? It was actually the Sun Pirates' ship! At the last minute, they pulled a switcharoo, with Wadatsumi hiding the Sunny in his mouth and trying to take the Straw Hats away. Even after Oven's attack forces Wadatsumi and the Sunny into the open, the Sun Pirates decide to hold off the Big Mom fleet for the Straw Hats. Jimbei can't bring himself to leave his old crew to themselves, so he promises to join Luffy in Wano while he helps them. The result? A giant maelstrom that blocks the fleet.
    • Luffy's orders to Jimbei are one of the few times where Luffy's exercising his authority as captain in full-force. Ninety percent of the time, he's the usual, happy-go-lucky goof-ball we all know and love, but when Luffy makes himself clear to Jimbei, he is Monkey D. Luffy, Captain of the Straw Hat Pirates. Jimbei bows his head in gratitude and obedience to him.
      Luffy: Remember one thing, Jimbei! I'M YOUR CAPTAIN NOW!
    • Poignant as it is to see Jimbei and the Fish-Man Pirates staying behind to hold off Big Mom's crew, Morgans' declaration on the final page makes it abundantly clear: The war for the title of King of the Pirates has begun.
  • On a meta level, the visuals and imagination for this island is extraordinarily well-crafted. As this video shows, the arc had a Disney land made of talking everything, a sci-fi kingdom, panels in the form of photographs, and so many more images showing Oda is still Doing It for the Art.

    Reverie Arc 
  • Chapter 903:
    • We got two big changes with the Straw Hat's bounties. Sanji surpassed Zoro's at 330 million berries (10 million more than Zoro's current amount). But it absolutely pales in comparison to Luffy who, in true Luffy fashion, didn't read it carefully and thought his bounty went down to 150 million. Only problem is, he forgot an extra zero. Luffy is now worth 1.5 billion berries.
      • It cannot be overstated how incredible this jump is. Assuming that we (generously) allow 7 days of travel time from Zou to Totto Land, we can estimate that all post-time skip events thus far have taken place over the span of 4 weeks in universe. In that time, Luffy has established Fish-Man Island as the first island of his protected territory, defeats perhaps the most powerful of the Warlords and liberates the kingdom of Dressrosa, establishes a grand fleet of hundreds of the world’s strongest fighters, invades the territory of one of the Four Emperors, defeats two of her strongest generals, and had his bounty nearly quadruple from 400 million to 1.5 billion, effectively establishing himself as the new Fifth Emperor. And all this after vanishing from the world stage for 2 years. No wonder the World Government fears Luffy so much!
    • Even though the assassination failed, and the Germa possibly fell into Big Mom's hands anyway, by beating two of her Sweet Commanders, circumspectly causing her palace to collapse, and getting away with it, Luffy was declared the winner of the fracas, much to Big Mom's fury.
    • The sheer fact that the media is referring to Luffy as the Fifth Emperor. Getting the attention of the entire world.
    • Nami gets a big power boost. She hung on to Zeus, who now lives in her Clima-tact.
    • Koby reappears for the first time post-timeskip (in canon), showing off his own two years of training by saving the Dressrosa and Prodence royals from a torpedo. While underwater.
    • Niji slipped a Raid Suit designed for Sanji in his pocket. Not only is this surprisingly and uncharacteristically kind of him, we know these suits give the user special abilities. Sanji predictably resists having one due to his deeply ingrained hate of the Germa, but at least he doesn't chuck it away at the insistence of Luffy. Chekhov's Gun is in play.
    • Coby returns and singlehandedly takes out a torpedo targeting the ship of the Dressrosa Royal Family by swimming after it and forcing it off course with his bare hands. All while Helmeppo boards the pirate submarine that fired it and defeats the entire crew off-panel.

  • Chapter 904:
    • Belo Betty empowering all the civilians so they could take down Pinkbeard and his men themselves.
      • Belo Betty herself is an awesome case of Oda Shown Their Work. As One Piece wiki and this very wiki mentioned, she's based on the picture Liberty leading the people (pictured in The Revolution Will Not Be Vilified) during the French Revolution which is not well-known outside of French or historians. While Gaburu's similarity to Che Guevara is only skin-deep, Belo Betty is a proof that Oda really did his homework and research into the history of revolutions.
    • Another understated moment is how consistent Oda has written the Revolutionary. Kuma, Ivankov and the commanders are all shown to uphold the ideal of "Help others help themselves". Keep in mind that Ivankov first appeared 10 years ago and Kuma even before that. Make you wonder how Oda has been planning his Magnum Opus out.
    • We finally learn what Dragon plans to do: declare war on the Celestial Dragons. These are the people even the Fleet Admiral won't touch, the infinitely-inabled pieces of shit who do every abusive and unforgivable act humanly possible without recourse, on pain of being wiped out if you even think about opposing them. And he doesn't even think twice about doing this, nor do his comrades: they all realize this is the only way to know true freedom and happiness. By revealing this one piece of information, this chapter proved Dragon is indeed the most dangerous and wanted man in the One Piece world.
  • Chapter 905:
    • Jerkass extraordinaire Stelly returns and promenades around like his usual spoiled self. He snobs off at Garp. Garp is a grizzled badass who has the notoriety and the stones to just lay out how much of a pussy he thinks Stelly is. Garp wastes no time in absolutely shitting down Stelly's neck. And it is magnificent. After years of getting away with crap, he finally meets someone who tells him upfront he's a dick and does nothing but insult him back, and the shoe is on the other foot.
    • The scene where the bondola ascends the Red Line and the passengers gaze up at an amazing view. It's especially touching for Shirahoshi, who has never seen the outside world in its full glory, and it brings her to Tears of Joy- even though she's prone to crying.
    • Fujitora having the guts to show up to Mariejois despite Sakazuki's ban order from letting him enter any Marine base threshold. Issho plays Rules Lawyer and argues that a place called Marineford is not a "base", getting in.
    • The predictable but intriguing introduction of the much-hyped Ryokugyu, if only a glimpse. We all knew he would probably turn up by Mariejois, but the first thing we learn about him that stands out? He has been fasting, nonstop... for three years. This is something that would kill an ordinary human after about seventy days from malnutrition. Fasting is also something Charlotte Linlin cannot do whatsoever, as it causes her to go absolutely berserk. In other words, Ryokugyu already has a leg up on one of the Four Emperors! That's the worth of an Admiral!!
    • The very last panel shows one of the guards tasked with protecting Stelly: Sabo. The Revolutionaries already infiltrated Mariejois.
  • Chapter 906:
    • When Wapol tries talking down to Dalton, the latter transforms into his hybrid form and coldly reminds Wapol that he's a king now too. Wapol tries to continue his tirade of how Dalton will never be a true king, but the latter instead ignores him to talk to Vivi, Rebecca, Shirahoshi, and Leo about Luffy.
    • It should not be understated how amazing it is to see so many people that have been affected by the Straw Hats' actions come together and have the chance to share their stories. Especially for Vivi, who has only been able to discern her friends’ actions through the newspaper. Now, she can learn of how Luffy and his crew saved countless lives, Shirahoshi can find more people she can relate to, and Rebecca and Leo can find out what led their saviors to helping them. In a world filled with awful people, the lives the Straw Hats have touched will always shine brightly and it will be in this arc that they can shine brightest.
  • Chapter 907:
    • Big Mom and Kaido planned a meeting via transponder snail, to discuss who gets to kill Luffy. They do this on an unencrypted line, which the listening Marines note is basically saying "try and stop us".
      • The mere fact that Luffy has enraged Big Mom and Kaido enough that they fight over which one has the right to kill him shows that they consider him more than just a mere nuisance now.
    • Midway through the meet-n-greet, Saint Charloss shows his ugly mug again and has the gall to try and grab Shirahoshi as a slave, right in front of everyone, even her own father and brothers! Unfortunately, CP0 are on hand to prevent anyone interfering. And just when Neptune is about to say "screw it" and wreak havoc, someone beats him to it and clobbers Charloss' face in: Saint Donquixote Mjosgard, the very World Noble that Queen Otohime saved.
      • And on both an Awesome and Heartwarming level, we get to see the proof that Otohime's words really did have an effect!
      • If you pay attention, you will see that Mjosgard's body shape has changed drastically from a fat slob into a pretty fit guy. It was stated by Saint Rosward in the next chapter that he has let go of all of his slaves. This means Mjosgard started to do everything with his own hands and might even have undergone some physical training himself. This was shown as how he was able to wield a big spike club and hit Charloss with enough force to send him flying a fair distance away.
      • Also, usually when someone "offends" a World Noble by doing something small as standing in their way, they would either get shot repeatedly or have an Admiral running after them. Mjosgard being a fellow World Noble means that he would likely get away with decking Charloss in the face with a club, no matter how much Charloss will whine about it.
    • There's also an understated one: Vivi and Rebecca actively attempt to intervene when Charloss goes after Shirahoshi, despite knowing how much trouble this would get themselves into. Even moreso for Vivi, who's great at discerning who not to pick a fight with, but was entirely unafraid to get into Lucci's face over it.
  • Chapter 908:
    • We had the impression that the Gorosei are the all-powerful rulers of the world, aren't they? Well, in this chapter, we find out that there is someone even they bow to, and they coolly prove that the tenet of the Empty Throne is a big lie. Imu's now running to be the true Big Bad of One Piece.

    Wano Country Arc: Act I 
  • Chapter 909:
    • Zoro has been back to the story for only a few pages. What's the first real thing he does? Cut down a magistrate and the building behind him, from across the hall, with a tanto (dagger used for seppuku).
    • Before that, Zoro sniffed blood on the magistrate and deduced the true culprit of the street murders, the magistrate himself, who tried to frame Zoro to get his hands on Shuusui.
    • Zoro achieving said feat owes itself to some Fridge Brilliance: it brings to mind what Mihawk said about any blade serving as a black blade as very viable and goes back to the showdown where all he used was a dinner knife to attack Zoro. Zoro has just proven he is able to match Mihawk on that level.
    • Whitebeard turning out to spend his seventy-year life making his homeland prosperous by funneling in all his treasure as dirty money going to a good cause a la Robin Hood, and never once being exposed by outside parties for doing that.
  • Chapter 910: The way to Wano is gorgeous. The scene with the wave is straight out of the famous Great Wave off Kanagawa. It seemed that Wano was designed so that Oda can show off his skill at traditional Japanese art.
    • Wano is apparently a lot like the places Luffy and Zoro trained on during the timeskip mixed into one. Rusukaina (a place full of giant beasts) + Gloom Kingdom (populated by Humandrills who copy what they see, including armed combat) = Wano (giant animals who can wield weapons like people), as the first thing Luffy notices after making landfall are two beasts fighting, one of which is wielding a giant katana.
  • Chapter 911:
    • Luffy's skill with the Color of Observation have really improved after having fought Charlotte Katakuri. No sooner than the two members of the Beast Pirates find him, they try to capture him. Luffy has none of that and knocks the first guy out without even looking behind him from far away. Then the second guy is knocked down by Luffy kicking the lizard steed the two were using right into the rifle which misfires.
    • Tama is building up to be a tough little girl despite the fact that she was captured and is adorable. Right after Luffy knocks the guy down and tames the baboon that was fighting the Komainu (both of which soon come to be tamed by her later using her Devil Fruit power), she gets out of the bag they were holding her in and using a stick, knocks the Beast Pirate member out. If that wasn't enough, right after thanking Luffy and everything, she decides to give her hard-earned rice to Luffy as a way to thank him for saving her life and is fighting the hunger she has to express her gratitude. Then there's a fact that she's dealing with all of this as she waits for a pirate named Ace who promised to see her again, when she could've moved to another place that has no toxic rivers (courtesy of Kaido's factories) and not have to survive in the most meager way possible.
    • To top it all off, the "Headliner" that the Beast Pirates were talking about? The guy that obviously is a higher member of the crew? It is the "Magician" Basil Hawkins, who like Apoo, has joined the Beast Pirates!
  • Chapter 912:
    • The long awaited team up finally happened: Zoro and Luffy vs Basil Hawkins! To add to the awesomeness, Luffy is wielding the Nidai Kitetsu (Kitetsu the Second), the middle member of the infamous cursed swords trio (Zoro already possesses Sandai — the Third). You just know that this will lead to some awesome revelation.
    • Yet another awesome points for "Oda never forgets". The story of the Kitetsus was first mentioned all the way back in Loguetown, more than 800 chapters ago. Now we are meeting their bladesmiths who may have an answer to the curse.
    • Also, the name of the village that Ace was in is Amigasa, which mean a type of Straw hat, this is likely where Ace learn how to knit the straw hat for Oars Jr.
  • Chapters 915 & 916: Urashima, the arrogant Yokozuna-rank sumo wrestler in Wano, summarily got his honor torn into pieces when Kiku cut down his topknot and subsequently got trounced by Luffy in a straight-up sumo wrestling, sending him off flying through the tower where Tama was kidnapped.
  • Chapter 917:
    • Luffy and Zoro moving so fast that Luffy is able to snatch Tama from Kamijiro's jaws without Holdem even seeing it happen (let along Kamijiro being able to crush Tama first), and Zoro slices through the mooks menacing Kiku.
    • Luffy not only isn't hurt at all from Kamijiro's huge fire attack, but then defeats Holdem in one hit with Gum Gum Red Hawk.
  • Chapter 918:
    • Luffy and Zoro successfully deliver the food to Okobore, and Luffy declares he will not leave Wano until the people are able to always have a good meal.
  • Chapter 921:
    • Shutenmaru, the leader of the bandits mentioned in several prior chapters, appears and though he is robbing the citizens of Leftover Town, he is shown to be no slouch. He takes on Jack, who rides on what appears to be a giant land shark creature, and instantly wounds Jack with no trouble. Indeed, the bandits and citizens stay away due to the intense fight.
    • After years and years of theories and speculations after the mention of Kaido and how he is the strongest "creature" in the world, Oda delivers a bomb almost as big as when Kaido 1st physically appeared...Kaido has been revealed to have eaten a Mythical Zoan type Devil Fruit that can turn him into a Dragon!
      • This is also retroactively a big moment for Shanks as well. All the way back in the Paramount War Arc, THIS is the monster that he stalled without a scratch to allow Whitebeard to enter Marineford.
  • Chapter 922:
  • Chapter 923:
    • Kaido gives us the very greatest demonstration of the Four Emperors' personal might ever seen, by effortlessly no-selling everything Luffy throws at him, then beating him within the inch of his life with a single effortless hit! Nightmarish, unpleasant, but still awesome.
      • It's understated, but Kaido's reaction to getting hit with three Haki-infused finishers? He just sits up, sighs in disappointment, and one shots Luffy. Given his disappointment, it's entirely possible that Luffy's initial barrage made him think for once he might be up against someone who could challenge him.
    • Adding to that when Luffy dodges another flame breath and prepares to strike Kaido again, the warlord just stares before getting hit.
    • The battle is also one for Luffy, though to a lesser extent. Kaido is not reacting in pain, but Luffy's attacks are clearly uncomfortable for him to go through. Even though Kaido is known for tanking everything that comes his way, Luffy’s assault is at least more than he expected.
    • It should be noted that Kaido is the first enemy to One-Hit Kill Luffy. Crocodile, Smoker, Admiral Kizaru... none of them managed to take out Luffy in one hit... all of them beat him at least once in the past... but none so soundly and abruptly as Kaido. Talk about a Hero Killer.
    • "I'm gonna be king of the pirates!" is Luffy's catchphrase, and he tells Kaido the same thing. After Kaido's done with him, this is his response.
    Kaido: You, Pirate King? You, boy!?
  • Chapter 924:
    • Kaido when sober quickly proves that he's not Dumb Muscle by stating that Luffy is still conscious and glaring at him, even though he is no longer moving. A couple of mooks fail to listen to this perception and get a blast of Luffy's Conqueror's Haki for their insolence.
    • Beaten within an inch of their lives and captured by Kaido's men, Kid and Luffy both display their unbreakable will and determination. Luffy still has the strength to glare at his captors, and both of them declare that Kaido will pay for this.
    • An unknown prisoner demonstrates just why you don't want to feed him fish with any bone in it, impaling a guard who was menacing Luffy in the neck with the fishbone he spits out. Oh, did we forget to mention that the fishes he ate daily are normally fatally poisonous?
    • Despite being KOed last chapter, Luffy is already on his feet and walking.
    • Kaido is vocally disturbed by Luffy. A stark contrast to when he was insulted into a rage when he was advised to take Luffy seriously.
    • A slight one for Kid. While he was still unconditionally crushed, we at least learn he put up enough of a fight to leave a firm impression, just like Luffy did.
      • Oh, by the way. Kid is confirmed to possess conqueror haki!

    Wano Country Arc: Act II 
  • Chapter 925:
    • Teach makes his debut after the Time Skip and is revealed to have a bounty of 2.247 billion.
    • The Blackbeard pirates display another two of the Devil Fruits they've acquired during the Time Skip. Devon has the Mythical Zoan Dog-Dog Fruit, Model: Nine-Tailed Fox, and Shiryu has the Clear-Clear Fruit.
  • Chapter 926:
    • Both Luffy and Kid move over 500 stone blocks several times their size despite being weakened by Seastone, having turned what was supposed to be a hellish imprisonment into a Friendly Rivalry to keep themselves from giving in to their jailers.
    • After eating hundreds of kibidango, they're confronted by the deputy warden Dobon, who uses the giant hippo attached to him to eat Luffy and Kid. They then proceed to punch their way out of him despite the Seastone restraints, and then pull a "you didn't see anything" due to the rules of fighting back.
  • Chapter 927:
    • Sanji reminds us why you never waste food around him. When one of Kyoshiro's goons knocks over his soba cart, he kicks his head in and force feeds him the soba off the ground.
    • Franky gets in on the fun as he suplexes another goon from the top of a building. Seems he learned some tricks from his fight with Senor Pink.
  • Chapter 930:
    • The Big Mom Pirates are heading to Wano and are breaking through with ease. That is until King shows off his Devil Fruit ability (Dragon Dragon Fruit: Model: Pteranodon) and knocks Big Mom's ship and crew into the ocean.
    • When Page One goes on a rampage looking for Sanji, he shows himself with a kick to the face, and then in order to make sure his identity is hidden, he takes out the Germa Raid Suit, forgoing his vow to never use it.
  • Chapter 931:
    • We finally see Sanji in his Raidsuit, and it is glorious. Known as Stealth Black, it grants Sanji one of his greatest dreams: invisibility! Bathhouses and foes better watch out.
    • The fight between Sanji and Pageone looks good for both of them. Pageone is forced to go hybrid form and sends Sanji though multiple buildings with one attack, thinking that has done his foe in only for Sanji to show up far above him still ready to fight. Brings back memories of him being punched through a wall way back at Arlong Park, only for him to get up and complain about how weak the blow was.
  • Chapter 932:
    • Despite being caught by the Oniwabanshu, Robin still shows some quick thinking while trying her best to get away from them:
      • Even after being warned that she'll be tortured to death if she lies, Robin lies anyway when asked who she is and what she's doing there, claiming to be the Witching Hour Boy investigating the flow of money in the capital. When the ninja try to capture her, it's revealed that "she" is actually just her flower clone, and she's able to get away temporarily.
      • Robin also realizes that, since she won't be able to get away from the palace, she might as well blend in by going back to the party and trying to continue her mission anyway. She does successfully conceal herself from the searching ninja for several minutes, and goes right up to Orochi when he invites her to him and starts asking him questions for the mission.
    • Komurasaki shows she won't take crap from anyone, not even the Shogun. When he tries to kill Toko for apparently laughing at him and refuses to listen to the courtesan's pleas for Toko's life, she gives him an epic bitch-slap across the face and tells him that she won't kneel for anyone, and doesn't even blink when he threatens to kill her for it.
  • Chapter 933: As Robin, Nami, and Shinobu are escaping the palace, Nami summons Zeus to send a powerful thunderbolt onto the palace.
  • Chapter 934: Off-screen, Kid has escaped the inescapable Udon Prison with his Seastone handcuffs still attached to him.
  • Chapter 935: Luffy, on the other hand, has been practicing with his Seastone cuffs to Fight Off the Kryptonite so that he'll come out of the prison even stronger than before. Queen, one of the All-Stars who serves under Kaido, outright labels Luffy a freak of nature.
  • Chapter 936:
    • We learn the identity of the dangerous prisoner: Kawamatsu, one of Oden's samurai. He's been stuck in this prison and eating poisoned fish for 13 years, and he's already fired up and ready to fight upon seeing one of his old friends.
    • Queen finally decides to execute Luffy, but it's more of an Amazon Lily-style execution where he is made to fight and die for their amusement. This requires him to remove Luffy's Seastone cuffs, and Luffy's immediate response upon being thrown into the ring is to knock out the first wave of enemies with Conqueror's Haki.
  • Chapter 937: Zoro shows that he doesn't need a sword to use Three-Sword Style. Grabbing one of Kamazo's scythes with his shoulder, taking it out and using it to perform Purgatory Onigiri on the man-slayer. The anime takes it Up to Eleven with the addition of Yutapon Cubes.
  • Chapter 939:
    • Luffy's battle against Katakuri has truly improved his Observation Haki as he is able to completely foretell what his enemies are doing, and is even directing Grandpa Hyou during battle so that the old man can put up a fight.
    • Of course, what really sells how amazing Grandpa Hyou, or rather Hyougoro of the Flower, is the fact that he can wield the same type of Haki that Rayleigh did when he stopped the giant elephant way back. That's right, Grandpa Hyou is on par (Haki-wise, at least) as the Pirate King's right-hand man!
    • In another episode of "Oda NEVER Forgets", Hyogoro describes a technique that allows one to cut steel, but can also allow one not to cut paper. Sound familiar? The Breath of All Things has made a comeback!
  • Chapter 942: Sad as the whole moment is, there is solace to be found in the fact that Yasu went down giving a good amount of momentum to the rebellion, and most importantly, making his archnemesis Orochi look like an absolute bitch in the process.
    • To elaborate, Yasu claims the markers Orochi's been using to arrest members of the rebellion, a tattoo and a pamphlet, were a random fad from twenty years ago and a prank by himself to make Orochi look like a coward. The actual rebels realize that Orochi can't say anything about the rebellion now without looking like he's jumping at shadows.
  • Chapter 943: After nearly six real life years, Sanji and Zoro finally reunite to defend O-Toko from Orochi.
  • Chapter 944:
    • Despite knowing well that it will cause them problems, the Straw Hats decide to not only steal the body of Yasu back while they're saving Toko but Zoro even aims an attack at Orochi for good measure.
    • Kyoshiro's strength is now being shown as he easily deflects Zoro's 720 Pound Cannon with one sword swing.
    • Of course, the Beast Pirates aren't slacking off on awesome, either. Queen demonstrates that while he's a fun guy, he's not someone you want in a bad mood as he easily blocks one of Luffy's punches.
  • Chapter 945:
    • Battles all over the flower capital are showing that both the forces of Wano and the Beast Pirates (or rather, Drake and Hawkins) are not going to let the Straw Hats have it easy. Kyoshiro is still holding off Zoro easily (while Zoro is showing fatigue), the Orochi Oniwabanshu arrive and show they're pretty smart (rather than hoping to capture them all, they decide to go after one to make them talk), Sanji is stalled by Drake in full dinosaur form, and (perhaps the most dark awesome we've seen) Hawkins is using his powers to hold Law's friends as hostages and shields.
    • Of course, we can't sell the Straw Hats short as Brook displays his soul power to some of the Orochi Oniwabanshu and scares them off while Zoro and Sanji aren't giving their foes an inch.
    • The chapter ends in a confrontation that will have massive consequences in the future: Big Mom vs Queen.
    • It's probably also worth noting that even suffering from amnesia, Charlotte Linlin still makes it clear that if she wants some food, you do not deny her. Queen tries to do just that and the amnesiac Emperor grabs his head (when he's a Brachiosaurus) and violently slams it into the ground.
  • Chapter 946:
    • Even with amnesia, Big Mom is no joke as she takes out Queen in two hits.
    • Amazingly even after that beating, Queen was still conscious.
    • In another Call-Back, Luffy manages to figure out how to remove the neck restraints in the nick of time.
    • With an angry Big Mom down their neck, Hyogoro stands his ground and orders Luffy to stop her in an impromptu training session. Ending on:
      Luffy: Come then, Emperor!
  • Chapter 947:
    • Though Luffy fails to activate Ryou (the true name for "the Breath of All Things"), Hyogoro assures him that he has the potential and goes on to explain how it works — and it sounds strikingly similar to the Haki techniques that make Big Mom and Kaido so freakishly tough. Luffy figuring out how to activate this power at will would allow him to finally challenge the Emperors directly, all he needs is a chance to train with it.
    • Queen deserves props: despite having been thrashed by Big Mom in the previous chapter, he still manages to stand back on his feet and devises a plan to stop her, luring her into a place where he could drop onto her head with the full weight of his Brachiosaurus form.
    • At the end of the chapter, with Queen, Big Mom, and majority of the guards gone, Luffy is finally able to go wild against Babanuki and the remaining guards due to no longer being bound by any restraints; the last panel of the chapter showing him declaring he's going to take over Udon.
  • Chapter 948: Raizo manages to successfully free Kawamatsu, and he shows off not only his sword skills, but his sumo skills.
  • Chapter 949:
    Luffy: I saw a pretty bad future just now...
    • When Daifugo tries to intimidate the prisoners, Luffy's speech already got through to them. What happens afterwards is a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown for Daifugo. The takeover of Udon is a success!
      Luffy: You get the rest.
      Daifugo: Hey! Stop, you!! Remember, anyone who defies a jailer in their first offense gets...
      Prisoner 1: We know, and we don't care.
      Prisoner 2: We've decided to rebel!!!
  • Chapter 950:
    • Zoro being epic and protecting Hiyori from several of the ninjas.
    • The end with Law unflinchingly grinning at Hawkins and Drake in defiance, and in the next chapter urging that he doesn't need rescuing.
  • Chapter 951:
    • Even after Big Mom gets her memories back, Queen has the stones to call her an old hag to her face.
    • King proves himself to have balls of steel, upon telling Big Mom, to her face, his response to her asking him to join her crew: "I refuse."
    • After having her Seastone handcuffs removed, Big Mom draws Napoleon and clashes with Kaido, causing the heavens to split a/la Shanks and Whitebeard.
    • Another one for how much Brook impressed Big Mom, when Kaido threatens her, she paraphrases the line Brook used on her about "What kind of fool would have come planning to die?"
  • Chapter 953:
    • Onimaru the Fox was not only the loyal companion of one of Wano's renowned sword masters, Shimotsuki Ushimaru, but joined Kawamatsu in stopping actual grave robbers as the two worked hard in obtaining as many weapons as they could to stop Kaido when the time came. Even more awesome is the fact that Onimaru decided to continue as "Gyukimaru the Bridge Bandit" and collected even more weapons while Kawamatsu was captured.
    • Yet another awesome moment for Kozuki Oden was revealed: with the aid of his legendary sword Enma, he was the only one to leave a scar on Kaido.
  • Chapter 954:
    • Law proves he didn't need rescuing after all. When we finally see him again in this chapter, he has had an Offscreen Moment of Awesome, having freed himself and defeated Hawkins.
    • Luffy, recovered from the Mummy virus and free to train without enemies breathing down on him, has made considerable progress towards mastering Ryou in just three days, demonstrated by him pummeling a giant cube of solid steel. Compare this to his battle with Katakuri who could make his limbs as strong as steel, where Luffy expressly needed Gear Fourth to break through it; now Luffy is in base form and treating the steel cube like jelly.
    • This chapter also put a high bar on the "Holy Shit!" Quotient. Big Mom and Kaido did what everyone from the Marines feared in the last arc, and have officially teamed up to destroy the Straw Hats and take over the world.
  • Chapter 955: Act 2 comes to an end.
    • Zoro tries out Enma, and its power is so great that his experimental swing at a tree results in him cutting a cliff. The secret to the blade is revealed: it forcibly draws Haki out of the wielder for massive strikes, and in inexperienced hands it's enough to drain their life force dry. Zoro has to will his stolen Haki back into his arm, which shriveled from the Haki extraction after just the one swing. Even with the danger it poses, Zoro gladly accepts Enma as his own. The Cursed Swords subplot has finally reached its payoff!
    • Luffy has mastered Advanced Armament Haki enough that he's now able to punch a big hole into a tree without touching it, just like how Grandpa Hyou punched out some of the executioners.

    Wano Country Arc: Act III 
  • Chapter 956:
    • "Big News" Morgans shows that he's not all talk. He gets offered a "hefty" sum from the World Government to perform a cover-up, only to flatly refuse. The messenger then reveals himself as a Cipher Pol agent, threatening him at gunpoint to reconsider. Unintimidated and thoroughly unamused, Morgans kicked his ass not even a page later and went on to publish the full story.
    • The Seven Warlord system is gone. The representatives of Alabasta and Dressrosa explained at the Reverie how their nations suffered horribly under the Warlords, and the decision to revoke their Government protection was met with the majority agreeing.
    • X Drake is revealed to not only still being a Marine, but he is a member of a Special Unit known only as "SWORD." It's revealed that Koby is also part of that group.
    • Best of all, however, are the reactions of the other Warlords. Buggy, while maintaining his image of being a great pirate, rallies his crew to fight (though he admits to himself he'll run away in the middle of the commotion). Weevil is, at first, dumbfounded by the fact that the Marines have turned against them so his mom elects to just kill them all. As for Boa Hancock and Mihawk? Hancock, upon hearing that some Marines (with Koby being a part of this group, mind you) are heading her way makes tells her Kuja subjects to calm down. Mihawk, on the other hand, just smirks at the prospect of being on the opposite end of the Marine's sights. The two warlords then make the most badass statements in the face of this impending threat:
      Boa Hancock: Don't panic! You seem to have forgotten something. The reason they chose us to be the Seven Warlords was for our strength!
      Dracule Mihawk: I'm feeling a tremor of excitement. It has been a while... since I was the one being chased.
    • Meta example: the chapter was so massive to the story that #OnePiece956 started trending on Twitter. Worldwide.
  • Chapter 957 drops a lore nuke after lore nuke courtesy of former Fleet Admiral Sengoku, to the point where everything in the chapter is awesome:
    • We're finally given information on the pirate crew that Big Mom, Kaido, and Whitebeard were once a part of before their heyday: the Rocks Pirates, led by Rocks D. Xebec. Essentially the Evil Counterpart to Gol D. Roger, this captain and crew were so mighty and relentless, they were regarded as terrorists rather than pirates, with Rocks' main goal being to usurp the Empty Throne from Imu. Unsurprisingly, this crew is also noteworthy for birthing a number of legendary pirates, some of which the Straw Hats contended with in the films.
    • The "God Valley Incident" where the Rocks Pirates were disbanded, courtesy of Vice Admiral Garp and Gold Roger in what could've only been a battle too epic to put to page to take down Rocks, defending the Celestial Dragons and their slaves from what would've been certain doom. This incident was one of the things that the World Government tried to erase from the history books.
      • Additionally, this confirms that Garp was on par with the Pirate King, and has been turning down promotions to a more fitting rank than Vice Admiral so he could uphold his ideals of justice without being the Celestial Dragons' lapdog. Sengoku thinks the only reason they haven't got rid of Garp for this attitude is because he's just that good.
    • After years of ambiguity, we've finally been given the bounties on the Four Emperors and Gold Roger (Rocks was exempt due to the Government Conspiracy), putting their threat level as the One Piece world sees it into stark relief:
      • Blackbeard: 2,247,600,000 Berries, which might've been the highest revealed in the series had he not been new to the Emperor business.
      • Shanks: 4,048,900,000 Berries.
      • Big Mom: 4,388,000,000 Berries.
      • Kaido: 4,611,100,000 Berries.
      • Whitebeard: 5,046,000,000 Berries — that's over five billion.
      • Gold Roger: 5,564,800,000 Berries, the highest bounty for a pirate in the world's history.
    • What prompted Sengoku to start dropping all these lore bombs? He learned about the alliance between Big Mom and Kaido, and grouses that this happened at the exact same time that they decided to go to war against the Seven Warlords. The world-spanning war Doflamingo predicted has indeed begun.
    • And Sengoku still wasn't done after all of this, having one last bomb to drop: Kozuki Oden was a pirate, and a pirate of Whitebeard's crew at that, a mere subordinate to an Emperor able to do lasting harm to another Emperor. It's clear that something big is brewing underneath the coming war at Wano...
    • And just like Chapter 956, this chapter similarly started trending on Twitter. But the difference here is that it trended within 30 minutes after it released. And this was worldwide, meaning that the Western half of the globe stayed up into the night to read it.
    • Outside of the aforementioned lore nuke, there is another CMOA that is a bit more subtle. At the beginning of the chapter, Issho is talking to Sakazuki. If you look at Issho, though, it is clear from how heavily bandaged he is that he sustained massive injuries in his off-screen battle against Sabo and the Revolutionary Commanders, despite being backed up by Green Bull. Bear in mind too that throughout the entire Dressrosa arc where Issho clashed against the likes of Law, Doffy, Sabo (after just eating the Mera Mera), and Luffy, he only suffered a few bruises at worst. While Sabo and the Revolutionary Commanders lost the battle, the fact that they were able to not only face off against two Admirals and seriously wound one of them is a testament to how strong they are.
  • Chapter 959:
    • Props to Orochi. Despite being labeled as a fool and everyone in his forces not believing him, he still manages to ruin things for everyone when he orders the destruction of all the bridges to Tokage Port and any ships on any of the other ports. What's more, he even sends some men to go and destroy the Sunny!
  • Chapter 960:
    • Kozuki Oden's childhood was nothing but one crazy feat after another, complete with a List of Transgressions as early as one year old.
    • Tsuru pinning down Kin'emon while he was trying to steal her money to settle his friend's gambling debts. Keep in mind that Kin'emon was a yakuza thug back then.
      • And she tops it off by threatening to rip off and sell his organs to reclaim his debt.
  • Chapter 961:
    • Oden has definitely earned his reputation. Taking out the Mountain God (a gigantic boar that can eat buildings and humans) in one strike and saving every person she ate. This is what made Kin'emon and Denjiro loyal to him.
  • Chapter 963:
    • This chapter highlights how much work, dedication, and loyalty the Nine Scabbards have for Oden when they take Yasuie's words to heart. They all pour themselves into not only training physically, but mentally by learning manners and polishing themselves up from their rough habits. In fact, they become so polished, that the people of the capital are shocked to see them as exemplary samurai.
    • Oden himself is still an amazing man from not only using the Mountain God and its child as steeds, but for having accepted Cat Viper, Dog Storm, and Kawamatsu as part of his retainers. The best part, however, comes at the end, where Oden races to the shore to face off against Whitebeard himself, brazenly asking to join his crew.
    • Episode 963 of the anime shows us the fight in full, with Oden being delighted in finding a Worthy Opponent in Whitebeard. The fight ends with Whitebeard's Tremor-Tremor Fruit-enhanced fist overpowering Oden's Oden Nitoryu and knocking the samurai flat on his back.
  • Chapter 964:
    • To get Oden to prove himself, Whitebeard has him hold on to chain attached to the ship for three days. He almost does it too, only letting go when he hears a woman in distress. That woman being his future wife, Toki.
    • But it turns out that was also a test, as Whitebeard sees Oden as a man willing to abandon his ambitions for someone else, he happily rewards him with an invite. On top of that, he refers to Oden as "brother" rather than "son", seeing him as an equal.
  • Chapter 966:
    • We finally get to see the Roger Pirates and Whitebeard Pirates clash, and the only word for it is epic. Oden starts off by taking down a number of the Roger pirates before clashing with Roger, who expertly and easily sends Oden flying with one strike. Oden runs back in time to see Roger and Whitebeard clash, a clash that not only showcases their respective Conqueror's Haki but shakes the island so much that the Moby Dick nearly capsizes from how powerful the clash is. In the end, it took three days for each crew to finally call a draw.
    • Just before this epic battle, it is shown that the Roger pirates had an encounter with a Marine ship. We don't get to see how the fight went down, just the result: everyone on that unfortunate ship is dead, the ship itself damaged beyond repair, and Roger has some parting words for the captain before leaving him for dead.
      Roger: If you're going to go after me, you'd better bring Sengoku or Garp with you.
    • That's not even the best of it. When Whitebeard and Roger raise their weapons, they're coated in such an intensely dense layer of Haki that they leave thick trails of Haki arching through the air just by moving them.
    • Also, about that clash, their weapons didn't even touch each other. Their Haki was so unbelievably thick that they were unable to get their weapons to touch each other. This means that that shockwave that almost capsized the Moby Dick came entirely from the pressure of just them swinging their Haki-infused weapons.
    • The simple fact that the viewers get to witness both Roger and Whitebeard fighting in their prime.
    • On a minor note, Buggy notes that Teach (who was fighting with the crew) also didn't sleep for the days of the truce after the fight. Heck, Buggy even mentions that there is a rumor that Teach had never slept once in his life. Considering what the future holds...
  • Chapter 967:
    • We bear witness to Roger conquering the Grand Line, and finding Laugh Tale.
  • Chapter 968:
    • When Oden learns what Orochi has done in his absence, he goes full One-Man Army and charges through Orochi's entire legion of bodyguards with no issue.
  • Chapter 969:
    • Oden made an unknown deal with Orochi that involved him spending five years acting like a fool, smearing his own name. When Orochi unsurprisngly reneged on the deal (something involving boats and Kaido), Oden had enough and with the Akazaya Nine they storm the castle. Ending on a badass two-page spread.
  • Chapter 970: We finally see the decisive battle between Oden and Kaido. The Emperor's forces number a thousand, though they are not the army of Devil Fruit users he has been building up in the present day; Oden, the Akazaya Nine and a late-joining Shinbou are crushing them, culminating in Oden leaving his legendary scar on Kaido. The battle seems even, or perhaps even steeped in Oden's favor... until Higurashi interferes by impersonating Momosuke, providing the critical distraction Kaido needed to knock Oden out.
  • Chapter 971: Oden prompts a bet out of Kaido that if those sentenced to boil survive one full hour in the pot, they go free. Kaido agrees to it and gives his word. So Oden proceeds to jump in and have his retainer stand on the lid while he holds it up by himself. Oden spends at least the first five minutes of this execution standing there, holding up all nine of his retainers while his body is steadily boiled. And keep in-mind, this is a man who has no Devil Fruit powers and besides that, no Devil Fruit user would be able to do anything in this sort of situation. If wounding Kaido didn't certify Oden as utterly badass, this solidifies it.
  • Chapter 972: Oden did it. He stood in the boiling pot for one whole hour while keeping his allies alive! But then Orochi reveals he changed his mind at the last minute and orders Oden, his allies and his family to be shot dead.
    • He did not go quietly either. He stood defiant to Kaido, telling him that he was born to boil before Kaido shoots him. Even then, Oden went out with a smile as his body sank into the oil. It should also be noted that Kaido personally ended Oden's misery as a sign of respect for the only man to ever wound him, having gone so far as killing Higurashi offscreen for interrupting the only bout with a Worthy Opponent he's had in decades.
  • Chapter 973: We finally know what happened to Denjiro. While Kin'emon, Kanjuro, Raizo, Kiku, Momonosuke went forward in time, Dogstorm and Catviper went back to Zou each blaming each other for Oden’s death, Kawamatsu taking Hiyori, and Ashura-doji biding his time; he was consumed with such a rage that his hair changed color. He then went to the Flower Capital where he assumed the name Kyoshiro. He quickly rose in the ranks of the underworld there to the point he caught Orochi’s attention who made him his vassal. The reason for his epithet “Napping”? He spends all night awake as Witching-Hour Boy! After Hiyori left Kawamatsu, she ended up finding him and instantly recognizing him as Denjiro, who had her sworn to secrecy as to his identity until the final battle and gave her the name Komurasaki.
  • Chapter 974:
    • On the cover side story, Gotti manages to save Chiffon despite looking like he had quite the tussle with the Marines.
    • We finally come back to the present, and things are looking bleak for the Scabbards. Not only are they trying still to get to Onigashima in a bad storm but it is revealed to them that Kanjuro was in fact the mole the entire time! With the arrival of the Beast Pirates and Kanjuro kidnapping Momonosuke, hope finally arrives in the form of Luffy, Law, and even Kid taking on the Beast Pirates!
    Luffy: Don't pick on Samurai in a rowboat! When you're at sea, you fight against Pirates!
  • Chapter 975:
    • The Sunny survived the sabotage attempt made by the Beasts Pirates because it was made of Adam Wood; the only damage done was the sails being torn. When Franky claimed that the Adam Tree could handle cannonballs being fired at it, he wasn't kidding.
    • Luffy, Law, and Kid immediately obliterate one of the enemy ships. The end result is the three of them arguing on a small piece of driftwood.
    • When Denjiro/Kyoshiro shows up in his own ship, he reveals his true colors by slicing another of the Beast Pirates' ships in half!
    • It turns out that Orochi's precautions were utterly pointless; Blowing up the bridges between the regions? The rebels had already crossed them, so it didn't matter. Destroying the ships? Those were just the leftovers the samurai didn't need. With the inclusion of the 200 man Kyoshiro Yakuza and the 1,000 supporters imprisoned in the Flower Capital, the Ninja-Pirate-Mink-Samurai alliance now has over five thousand men ready to take on Onigashima!
    • Yasuie gets a posthumous one, as it turns out his adding two lines didn’t mean Tokage port but to remove the middle of the message so it read wharf as in the wharf of Habu.
  • Chapter 976:
    • An Offscreen Moment of Awesome: While Kanjuro is getting away with Momonosuke, the three arguing pirate captains obliterated another of the Beast Pirates' ships.
    • Towards the end of the chapter, the remaining Beast ship gets smart and sails to a safe distance, bringing out long-range artillery to ravage the Samurai's fleet. It looks like they're going to get away with it until something from under the sea gouges a large hole in the ship: Jimbei is back with impeccable timing! He then finishes off the final ship and loudly proclaims he has officially joined the Straw Hat Pirates, assuaging any fears from the audience that he'd be on a Long Bus Trip for this arc.
  • Chapter 977: The fact that the Straw Hats (including their newest member, Jimbei) destroy the fortress that is the front gate in seconds. Hilariously? This was so that they could get some booze to celebrate Jimbei joining the crew.
  • Chapter 978: Kin'emon, with two sentences, summarizes how much he and those under him are willing to risk to see Wano free and Kozuki Oden avenged. They are fully aware that the risk they will fail and be killed to the last is there - and they aren't letting it stop them.
    [The allied forces disembark from their ships, which start sinking almost immediately.]
    Luffy: Huh?! The ships are sinking! What happened to your ships, guys?!
    Kin'emon: We sink them before we go! On this mission... we need no return ships!!
  • Chapter 980:
    • Luffy knocking the Beast Pirate mook for wasting the oshiruko? Cool. Zoro slashing a tower apart to reprimand Luffy? Cool. When Luffy explains why he knocked the mook out? The two decide they need to knock a few heads for what happened to Tama.
    • We get to see some of Apoo's Devil Fruit powers at their best against Luffy and Zoro, and it is still as bizarre and awesome as when he began to display them against Kizaru.
      • More props to Apoo for visibly hurting Zoro, which was an extreme rarity to see in the New World.
    • At the end, it's not Luffy or Zoro that go to smash Apoo, but Kid, with a giant metallic hand for Apoo's treachery from before.
  • Chapter 981:
    • The Big Mom Pirates make it back up the waterfall, only to be knocked down again by a different flying pirate. Marco the Phoenix has arrived to Wano! And he brought Cat Viper and Izou.
      • What's particularly notable about Marco's Dynamic Entry and makes it stand out is how ruthlessly pragmatic it is for one of the Straw Hat's allies. By knocking them all the way back down again, Marco has effectively removed the Big Mom Pirates (with the exception of Big Mom herself) from the playing field, meaning that Luffy and the others will not need to worry about them interfering in the battle against the Beast Pirates.
        Marco: The next time you show up the times may have moved on a bit more than before.
  • Chapter 983:
    • Yamato's big introduction. When Ulti begins to overpower Luffy and he was about to use Fourth Gear, he runs in with a Thunder Bagua and knocks her out. Like Father, Like Son indeed.
    • Rather than try to go up the waterfall again, Perospero heads into Onigashima alone. With no Smoothie, Daifuku, or anyone strong to protect him.
    • Usopp and Chopper survive their encounter with Big Mom with only a couple bumps on their heads.
  • Chapter 984: Yamato's big secret: "he" is actually a "she," having decided to take on masculine mannerisms to emulate Kazuki Oden. And as a daughter of one of the Five Emperors, he sets the bar for what it means to be an Action Girl in this series!
  • Chapter 985:
    • Nightmare Fuel though this action of his may also be, for what it exactly is he intends to do... no one can deny that Kaido has served as the MVP of this chapter, for one simple reason: killing fucking Orochi. In the midst of his speech, on turning the Flower Capital into another factory grounds. And, in that same speech... his goals are made clear: he and Big Mom both intend to find the One Piece, the very goal our heroes have been journeying long and hard for, this entire time. A Crowning Moment Of Evil, if ever there WAS one.
    • What's particularly impressive about the way Kaido kills Orochi is just how immediate it is. Unlike a lot of One Piece villains, he doesn't monologue or go into some long-winded Motive Rant or Evil Gloating about how Orochi was nothing more than his Unwitting Pawn and how Orochi no longer has any usefulness. Instead, the second Orochi starts to catch wind of what Kaido is planning, Kaido immediately beheads him and resumes discussing his plan with his men.
  • Chapter 986:
    • Luffy shows some impeccable use of Advanced Armament Haki when he easily removes Yamato's handcuffs.
    • When Yamato learns that they really were explosive handcuffs, he immediately disowns his father.
      • One for Luffy shortly afterwards — instead of leaping straight into the fight, he holds Yamato back and tells him that the two of them aren't meant to throw the first punch. The Hot-Blooded Idiot Hero is following the plan.
    • Momonosuke shows some real development. When faced with death if he confirms that he's the son of Oden, he proudly shouts that he's Kozuki Momonosuke and he will be the Shogun of Wano.
    • The Raid begins! The Akazaya Nine charge in, rushing Kaido. Izo shows his impeccable marksmenship by shooting a sword out of King's hand. The Nine's presence is so overbearing that Kaido actually flashes back to Oden. The group jumps him with a cry of "Sunacchi!". King and Queen “be damned”, nothing will stop the retainers of Oden from killing Kaido.
  • A special mention the animated episode of this chapter being released with the Nine racing through the hallways, cutting and shooting down anything that gets in their way, along with the stellar animation of Kinemon’s performance and technique, taking down Kaido’s many goons. And a slight reminder that this dangerous guy was introduced as a joke as a detached head and legs, courtesy of Law, in Punk Hazard.
  • Chapter 987:
    • The Akazaya Nine do what nobody but Oden managed to do in 20 years: wound Kaido. Their blades don't go far (especially when one considers that Raizou went for his throat), but their blades still pierce the Emperor's nigh-impenetrable skin, and Kiku stabs through his hand. Even if they didn't do much damage at the outset, Kaido is shocked by the fact that he's even feeling pain.
    • Luffy confronts both Big Mom and Kaido, announcing that he's not there just for fun — he's there to declare all-out war on them! And Kaido's response is to laugh — not in a mocking fashion, but with excitement as he gleefully accepts the challenge. Clearly, things are about to get real in the next several chapters.
      • This also implies that Luffy managed to earn Kaido's respect. Of all the vanquished foes that Kaido sentenced to a living hell, Luffy was one of the very few whose spirit was never broken. And now the captain of the Straw Hat crew has returned, having Took a Level in Badass, and is ready for round two. And that is how one earns the respect of Kaido, who's infamously known throughout the world as its "Strongest Creature."
    • Kaido doesn't waste time playing around in human form. Instead, he smashes right through the roof of his castle in his dragon form, declaring that he's all sobered up. Clearly, he has no intention of holding back; the Red Scabbards have impressed him enough to take this fight seriously.
    • Closing out the chapter is Boss Cat Viper noting that the Strawhat-Samurai-Mink Alliance were counting on Kaido smashing up through the roof. That's why he and Duke Dogstorm brought all the warriors of Zou to fight; they're all up there already waiting for Kaido. And his closing remarks about the full moon being out that night can mean only one thing...Boss Cat Viper and Duke Dogstorm are about to go Sulong!!!
  • Chapter 988:
    • It turns out not to be just be Viper and Dogstorm going Sulong, but all of the Minks involved in the raid, forming an angry mob that prepares to keep Jack and his cronies away from the battle with Kaido.
    • Shinobu and a suited-up Sanji work together to rescue Momonosuke, and despite King brutally retaliating, they succeed.
    • In case you've forgotten how strong Big Mom really is, she uses her Ikoku technique to blast a hole clean through Onigashima and into the sea.
    • When it looks like Nami is done for after Big Mom reclaims Zeus, Franky and Brook suddenly arrive on the scene, cutting Zeus in half again and running Big Mom over.
  • Chapter 989:
    • Franky, Robin, and Jimbei team up to directly fight Big Mom, aiming to take her off the board temporarily. And they succeed. Jimbei grabs her by the arm from behind as she goes to swing at Franky (who was distracted by one of Kaido's wild beasts and was forced to attack it rather than Big Mom), and Robin then restrains her with her powers before rolling her straight out of the building like a soccer ball. Suddenly, she seems like someone the Straw Hats can actually beat.
    • Franky's response to Nami warning about Big Mom being one of the Four Emperors was pretty much a "so what", boasting that Luffy is going to be the King of the Pirates. Noteworthy, as Franky was freaking out over Luffy challenging her back at Fish-Man Island.
    • A subtle one for Franky. As he aimed his Radical Beam at Big Mom, she had a worried look on her face. Franky managed to intimidate one of the Four Emperors.
    • After their confrontations with King and Queen, Zoro, Sanji, and Luffy regroup with the rest of the crew. The final frame of the chapter is the ten of them standing ready to fight (reminiscent of the iconic scene from Fish-Man Island), and Luffy declaring that he knows he can rely on his crew to defeat Kaido's lackeys while he goes for the big guy himself. Awesome.
  • Chapter 990:
    • Even when facing the Minks in their Sulong form, Jack still puts up a fight, easily taking several of them out despite cuts all over his trunk and swords in his body.
    • Facing down the Numbers (revealed in the last chapter to be failed experiments at recreating ancient giants), Luffy is reminded of fighting Oars on Thriller Bark, remembering how his crew had to work together to take him down, and barely even did it then. But now, Luffy can easily take each of the Numbers on by himself, and does just that by going Gear Fourth and attacking one with a Kong Gun.
    • Zoro and Jimbei show their stuff when taking on a Number. Zoro cuts its mace in half, and Jimbei punches it to stop it.
    • Drake ends up getting outed as The Mole by Queen, Who's Who, and Hawkins. In response, he sets off an explosion, escapes, attacks a Number, and, remembering what Koby said, joins Luffy's side.
  • Chapter 991:
    • Apoo sobering the Numbers back up. In addition, when Luffy and Sanji cover their ears from his attack, he points out the Logical Weakness in that strategy:
      Apoo: Aaaa pa pa pa pa!! So you learned, huh?! But it's a lot harder to fight in silence than you think!
    • Kin'emon gets to show just how powerful his Fox-Fire Style is when he literally cuts Kaido's Bolo Breath in half, protecting the rest of the Akazaya Nine and injuring Kaido in the process.
    • The Akazaya Nine showing just how determined they are when they state that it doesn't matter if they die, so long as Kaido goes down with them.
      Denjiro: (about escaping) Run? Don't make me laugh!
      Raizo: We're tired of running!! Tired of hiding!!!
      Ashura Doji: Just let us die!!! As Oden's samurai!!!
      Kawamatsu: Once we've taken your head, that is!!!
  • Chapter 992:
    • The whole thing is practically one long moment of awesome as the Nine Red Scabbards (with Izo effectively replacing Kanjuro) go to town on Kaido's dragon form and actually hurt him. Repeatedly.
      • Cat Viper and Kawamatsu draw first blood, causing all of Kaido's subordinates to have a collective Oh, Crap! moment when they realize their boss can be hurt.
      • Dogstorm puts his new pegleg to good use by stabbing it into Kaido's skin.
      • Izo and Kikunojo pepper Kaido with enough ranged attacks that he resorts to using his Bolo Breath on them, except...
      • Raizo summons a scroll from out of nowhere, absorbs the Bolo Breath with it, and sends it directly back at Kaido!
      • The whole thing culminates with Dogstorm, Ashura, Denjiro, and Kin'emon all simultaneously replicating the very same technique Oden himself used against Kaido over 20 years ago and reopening the scar Oden gave Kaido at the same moment. All four strikes land on the exact same spot.
  • Chapter 993: Kaido once again shows why he's the "King of the Beasts" when he shrugs off the attacks of the Akazaya samurai, claims they're still nothing compared to Oden, and launches a Razor Wind attack that cleaves off Kiku's arm through her armor.
  • Chapter 994: After Kiku loses an arm, her brother ties up the stump to lessen the bleeding before Kin'emon cauterizes it with his Flaming Sword. She then states that she's still good to fight. Kaido himself was impressed by this.
  • Chapter 995:
    • Marco briefly clashes with Big Mom and Prometheus, even injuring the latter with his phoenix powers. Goes to show that this guy was second-in-command to Whitebeard not just out of fatherly love.
    • As Perospero is about to shoot Marco with an arrow, Sulong Carrot and Wanda rush in and slash him across the eyes!
    • Ulti brutally beats Nami, and in a fit of anger demand she say Luffy will never be King of the Pirates. Nami, bleeding and afraid, defies her and says he'll "never STOP until he's King of the Pirates". Her loyalty to the crew will never waver.
    • Just as Ulti is about to smash Nami's skull, Tama appears with Komachiyo and bites down on her.
  • Chapter 996:
    • Kaido is shown wiping the floor with the Red Scabbards showing he was just toying with them all along.
    • How did Tama get to Onigashima? She snuck aboard an enemy ship. On her own that wouldn't be impressive, but the fact she brought a large lion-dog and sword-wielding baboon with her is worth mentioning.
    • Where has Law been the last several chapters? Turns out he was hunting for the Road Poneglyph, as he's now dedicated to finding out the truth of the D. name along with Robin (and the audience).
  • Chapter 997:
    • Zoro shows us why he's largely considered to be the Vice Captain of the Straw Hat Pirates. He first takes Apoo down in a single strike and proceeds to give Chopper the vial and instruct him to synthesize an antidote to the Ice Oni virus. He then destroys Queen's Excite Bullet gattling gun before Queen can even react and caps it off by dropping a Badass Boast on him:
      Zoro: I DIDN'T COME ALL THE WAY TO THIS ISLAND TO WASTE TIME ON A BUNCH OF NONSENSE!!! THEY SAY KAIDO'S THE TOUGHEST GUY IN THE WORLD!! SO I'M HERE TO SLICE HIM INTO PIECES!!
      • Keep in mind Queen has a bounty almost 4X that of Zoro's current bounty and is one of the top three in an EMPEROR'S crew and Zoro basically told him he isn't worth his attention. Bad. Ass.
    • Terrifying as it is, Kaido's power lifting the ENTIRE ISLAND of Onigashima!!
  • Chapter 998:
    • Marco's flames allow the infected to be temporarily subdued while Chopper and a few Minks create and distribute the antibody.
    • We finally get to see all of the Devil Fruits of the Tobiroppo. Turns out, they're all Ancient Zoans:
      • As previously seen, X Drake, Page One and Ulti can transform into an Allosaurus, Spinosaurus, and Pachycephalosaurus respectively.
      • Now, Sasaki knocks General Franky down as a Triceratops, Black Maria entangles Sanji with the webs of a Rosamygale Grauvogeli, and Who's Who confronts Jimbei in the form of a large Saber-toothed Tiger.
    • The last page reveals that Yamato met Ace when the latter visited Onigashima, and that Ace came to Onigashima with the intention of killing Kaido of all people, seemingly on his own!
  • Chapter 999:
    • The flashback starts with Ace clashing with Yamato. Due to the fact that Kaido and his higher ranked were on an expedition, Ace is able to take down everyone except for Yamato.
      • It is also shown that Ace and his crew were apparently there to save kids who were kidnapped, which they succeeded in doing with no problem.
      • When Ace notices the shackles on Yamato's arms, he tells Yanati that he shouldn't let his heart be shackled too, which moves Yamato, leading to the two becoming friends.
    • Marco is taking on both King and Queen to bring Zoro to the roof.
  • Chapter 1000:
    • To start things off this chapter, we have Marco (in full phoenix form) putting Queen AND King in neck holds with his wings. This is especially impressive given not only their own strength but also the size difference between Marco and them.
    • Yamato reveals that within Oden's logbook, he left a message describing what will happen in the future.
      Over 20 years in the future, powerful pirates leading the next generation will come swarming into the New World!! If I am dead by then, they will be the ones to strike down Kaido!!!
      • As this is being said, Luffy, Zoro, Law, Kid, and Killer all make it to the roof to confront Kaido and Big Mom.
    • When Luffy arrives at the summit of Onigashima, he is joined by all of his fellow Supernovas participating in the raid, resulting in a two-page panel of them fearlessly facing down the two Emperors. The final confrontation for Wano has begun.
    • When Luffy sees the Akazaya Nine, he immediately goes to Kin'emon. Kin'emon asks that Luffy save Wano, to which Luffy responds that he'll do it because it's his friend's country.
      • Also, to get to Kin'emon, Luffy strides right between two of the most powerful pirates in the world like they aren't even worth his time.
    • When Luffy encounters the two Emperors, Kaido demands that Luffy dare to say what he said to him in their first bout all those chapters ago to his face again. Incensed by Luffy ignoring him to tend to Kin'emon, he attempts to crush the Straw Hats' captain on the spot — only for Luffy to dodge into the air. Thinking back to all the friends he's made in Wano who Kaido has hurt, he summons up an Elephant Gun, only to instead unleash a Red Hawk variant of it called Red Roc. This attack draws blood from Kaido and smashes him facefirst into the ground. As Big Mom reprimands Kaido in disbelief, Luffy stands before them and, at last, answers Kaido's question for the both of them:
      • Both Kaido and Big Mom are shocked that Luffy could do damage to Kaido, which shows how much stronger Luffy has gotten since his last bout with him. For bonus points, Kaido doesn't have the "I was drunk out of my mind" excuse this time around, nor was Luffy taking advantage of his scar — he legitimately drew blood from Kaido on the word "Go". Luffy's brief Ryou training has already levelled the playing field.
  • Chapter 1001:
    • Zoro shows that his time training for the war was well spent as he performs Kin'emon's firecutting technique to cut Prometheus in half.
    • We finally get to see what Kid was planning to do with all the scrap metal he'd gathered a few chapters ago: Form a giant mech that's larger than Kaido.
    • Luffy is capable of partly dodging Kaido's attack. Kaido even compliments him for that.
    • In a callback to their first meeting at Sabaody, Luffy, Kid, and Law engage Kaido together with Luffy punching him in the stomach with a Gear Fourth Kong Gun, Kid crushing him between the hands of his mech, and Law using his powers to bury Kaido in rubble.
    • Of course, Kaido's no slouch either. His Thunder Bagua is so fast that even with Advanced Color of Observation Haki, it's almost impossible to dodge. And when the Worst Generation gang up on him, he's able to take their hits and come back swinging.
  • Chapter 1002
    • Kid, Law, and Killer attacking Kaido and actually making it hurt. Kid uses his Punk Rotten to throw Kaido's much larger body and slam it, and Law uses his Gamma Knife to strike the dragon's heart directly. Killer follows this up with something called "Sonic Scythe" where his Punishers apparantly bypass scales to reach the internals, represented visually by his blades growing larger and cutting through Kaido's body! Even Kaido admits that he can't rely on his natural durability to win this one alone.
    • Just when it looks like Luffy is about to take a point blank Breath Blast from Kaido, Zoro with Law's help dives in the middle and cuts his attack clean in half to disperse it. This is followed by Big Mom freaking out and screaming for Kaido to dodge the counterattack when she sees his sword, and even Kaido seems intimidated when he senses the same aura as Oden coming from Zoro. Kaido barely dodges and the whiffed strike ends up cleaving off one of the castle's horns. Let's repeat that: Kaido, who has tanked every attack without any concern, decided to dodge the attack instead of risking it head-on. The fact Kaido even felt the need to heed Big Mom's advice about dodging speaks volumes of the threat Zoro poses now that he has trained with Enma.
    • In an amazing Call-Back that's both this and hilarious, Big Mom strikes Luffy directly with Zeus and is convinced he's toast, but when he turns up unscatched she demands to know why, and Luffy casually reiterates that he's made of rubber. Big Mom is left making an identical Oh, Crap! face as Eneru as she realizes that not even Zeus being magically animated and empowered by Haki keeps Luffy from being the Logical Weakness of a third of her powerset.
    • Immediately after is an even better moment: Luffy gets hit by a point-blank Bolo Breath... and powers through it with sheer guts. Repeat: Luffy managed to tank an attack that OBLITERATED AN ENTIRE CASTLE AND THE MOUNTAIN IT WAS STANDING ON. Which is then followed up by Luffy revealing Kong Gatling. He's pummeling Kaido right in his face, just like he did during their first fight... but this time, he's not going to come out unscathed.
    • This chapter really shows how far all of the Supernovas have come. While Kaido is built up throughout the arc as a justifiably immense threat, his opponents have managed to reach that threat level. From a narrative standpoint, this is why Big Mom was reintroduced for this arc: not to help Kaido deliver a Curb-Stomp Battle, but to prevent him from being on the receiving end.
  • Chapter 1003:
    • Despite getting hit by Big Mom's lighting in the last chapter, Zoro, Law, Kid, and Killer are all revealed to be relatively unscathed and watching as Luffy delivers his Kong Gatling on Kaido.
    • Law managed to hurt Big Mom with his Counter Shock. It goes to show that even if he isn't the heavy-hitter that Luffy and Kid are, Law's analytical fighting style and precise close-range attacks can now pierce straight through and hit even the strongest of Devil Fruit or Haki-users.
    • Luffy finishes his Kong Gatling by hitting Kaido with a punch that knocks him into the ground with enough force to create a massive dust cloud.
    • Another point to Kaido, he gets right back up and uses his powers to create tornados across the battlefield.
    • Then when Kaido tries to eat Luffy, Zoro counters with his own tornado and actually manages to cut him with the power of Enma.
    • And a major one at the end, Kaido has finally assumed his hybrid form.
  • Chapter 1004:
    • We find out why Tama snuck into the battle: she used her Devil Fruit ability to create as much kibi-dango as possible on the boat ride to Onigashima to tame a bunch of SMILE-users mid-raid - every dango fed equals a new ally for the rebellion. That prediction that CP0 made last chapter about the Beast Pirates defeating the alliance with sheer numbers? Already called into question because of one little girl.
    • Tied with the top, Nami and Usopp are able to fool Sasaki and his crew long enough for Usopp to snipe the kibi-dango right into the mouths of many of the Armored Corps.
    • Nami is able to nail Ulti with a Thunder Lance Tempo. While she admits she needs to use more power to take Ulti down, it is nice to see the same move that took down Kalifa from CP9 way back when.
    • Not to be outdone, Franky is able to fight Sasaki to the point where he lands a deadly sword attack on the currently transformed member of the Flying Six.
  • Chapter 1005: Robin and Brook show up to save Sanji from Black Maria. Robin slaps the Tobiroppo with a giant hand, while Brook uses his Ghostly Chill to free Sanji.
  • Chapter 1006:
    • Proving that he was Whitebeard's Number Two for a reason, Marco continues to absolutely trivialize both King and Queen with utmost ease and at the same time, to the point that he's openly more invested and entertained at what's happening around him than the fight itself.
    • Hyogoro shows why he was such a feared warrior when he unleashes a move that defeats all of the Mimawarigumi and the Orochi Oniwabanshu single-handedly. This is because catching the Ice Oni virus drew out his dormant strength.
  • Chapter 1007:
    • Chopper successfully creates a cure for the Ice Oni virus and heals everyone who's been infected — not a second too soon either, as Hyogoro would've had to be given a Mercy Kill otherwise.
    • How does Chopper do it? He and his assistants fire an airborne cure through a cannon. This is enough to purify the entire floor, saving thousands of lives.
    • Just before this, Queen was ranting at how the Pleasures and Waiters are useless Cannon Fodder whose only purpose now is to spread the Ice Oni virus. Now that Chopper saved them? They all turn on Queen. CP0 might want to run the numbers again, because the Beast Pirates' advantage just evaporated.
      "We're not gonna sit still and get murdered by an insane boss! We'd rather die on the side of the guy who saved our lives!! Ain't that right, boys?!"
    • Chopper caps off his moment of heroism by immediately using Monster Point and decking Queen as a means of venting for all the Tanuki comments.
  • Chapter 1008: This quote as the 5 Supernovas face down against the 2 Emperors.
    Kid: [Grinning] With the two of them [Big Mom and Kaido] standing side by side it looks like we're in Hell!
    Luffy: [Smiling] That suits me fine. I've been to Hell and back a few times already!! It's Home Territory!!!
  • Chapter 1009:
    • Kin'emon and the others decapitate all of Orochi's heads like it's an afterthought.
      Kin'emon: We have no time to waste on you. Your judgement will be served in Hell!!!
    • Big Mom and Kaido's Combination Attack, Conquest of the Sea, is probably the strongest attack seen in the series to date.
      • Zoro then manages to BLOCK IT. Yes, it's only for a moment, and he is still heavily injured, but read that again. Zoro managed to block a Combination Attack from two Emperors!
    • Luffy and Kaido are still fighting. While Kaido is still hammering Luffy, the younger pirate gloats that Kaido is now actually bothering to dodge his attacks.
    • Zoro, Killer, Kid and Law display excellent teamwork against Big Mom and her Homies. Kid creates a metal box that Law uses to trap Zeus in. Then Zoro uses Kin'emon's Fox Fire Style to cut Prometheus into pieces while Killer separates Napoleon from Big Mom. With her Homies gone, Kid attacks Big Mom; although she No Sells his attacks and smashes him into the ground, he wraps her arm in metal and uses Repel to launch her into the air. Law then uses Tact to chuck a rock at her, which doesn't harm her, but manages to push her off the edge of the island and towards the sea below. With Zeus trapped, Prometheus in pieces and Kaido busy with Luffy, Big Mom is very likely out of the fight, at least for a time.
  • Chapter 1010:
    • Zoro, for the first time since the Time Skip, brings back his 9-Sword Style Asura mode to unleash a devastating move that leaves Kaido with another scar. And Kaido realizes that Zoro has Colors of the Supreme King Haki as well!
    • But the real MVP is Luffy, who has discovered that he can use his Ryuo moves with his own Supreme King Haki, allowing him to block Kaido's club without touching it, just like when Gold Roger and Whitebeard fought! And Luffy then follows up with a punch to the gut and an uppercut that sends Kaido reeling. And Luffy did it without his Gears.
    • Kaido proves deserving of his reputation as unkillable by tanking all of the above without much trouble, while still making the island float with his power.
  • Chapter 1011:
    • In their only scene of the chapter, Luffy and Kaido have an epic clash of Haki reminiscent of whenever the Four Emperors clashed. It's official: Luffy is now in the league of the Emperors.
    • Tama continues to be an epic Spanner in the Works. She, Nami, and Usopp are still fleeing Page One — and run into the recovered Big Mom! It almost looks like they'll have a new pursuer, until Big Mom recognizes Tama. She stops everything and genuinely thanks the little girl for giving her food when she was an amnesiac... and then Tama sullenly reveals that Okobore, where she got that food from, was burned down by the Beast Pirates not long after. Big Mom is incensed, doing a complete 180 and citing Even Evil Has Standards as she smashes Page One into the floor. Whatever pretext the Beast-Big Mom Alliance had just collapsed.
      Big Mom: Don't you know... that even in the cruel world of pirates, there's still a code of honor?!! You clowns!!!
  • Chapter 1012:
    • Villanous though it may be, Ulti gets some points in awesomeness in that she is willing to fight Big Mom. Let's repeat this: Ulti was willing to fight Big Mom after seeing Big Mom deck Page One and only stopped to continue pursuing Nami, Usopp, and Tama. Then what does she do to show she is willing to cross lines? She beats up Komachiyo and then, IN FRONT OF BIG MOM, slashes Tama.
    • When Ulti slashes Tama's cheek, Nami goes from trying to escape to smacking Ulti with a lightning bolt. While Usopp freaks out over her actions, Nami swears she'd never tolerate someone who'd raise their hand to a child.
      Nami: I'm going to stay here and crush her!!!
  • Chapter 1013:
    • Big Mom proves her status as an Emperor by combining her three Homies into a Sword Beam she calls Maser Cannon, blowing a hole straight through Ulti's gut and taking her out instantly.
    • When Big Mom turns her attention to the Straw Hats, Captain Kid comes down on her with Punk Gibson, before deciding to take her on while the Straw Hats get away.
    • A villainous one for Kaido. Despite the set up that Luffy has a fighting chance now that he knows how Kaido's power works, the ending has the chilling scene of an unconscious Luffy falling from Onigashima, once again proving that Kaido is "the strongest creature alive". In a one-on-one fight — on land, on sea, or in the air — always bet on Kaido.
      • That also makes Kaido the very first antagonist since Crocodile to beat Luffy twice in a row (or even three times if you count the moment Luffy was knocked out by Kaido's Ragnarok during the fight on the roof).
  • Chapter 1014: Everybody refusing Kaido's offer to join him even after they hear about the Scabbards and Luffy's defeats.
    • Kin'emon not only took down Kanjuro, he also took on Kaido by himself while alone and injured.
  • Chapter 1015: Things are looking bad for Chopper. Queen just won't go down and Perospero has unleashed a massive rain of arrows onto the samurai. Then Sanji shows up, kicks Queen (In his brachiosaurus form) so hard the Lead Performer goes into a spin that not only deflects the arrows but also smacks Perospero away!
    Sanji: Rotisserie...STRIKE!!!
    • Kin'emon staying conscious despite being hit with a two handed Kanabo Conqueror's Haki attack from Kaido. For perspective: Paige One, who has an ancient Zoan type devil fruit, was knocked out with a single handed Conqueror's Haki blow from Big Mom. Even when severely injured, Kin'emon still managed to injure Kaido.
    • Momonosuke announces that Luffy is still alive and restores everyone's morale, showing he is doing his part to contribute.
    • Luffy managing to still speak while underwater and unconscious. Despite how serious his situation is, Luffy still doesn't give up and continues to fight Kaido.
  • Chapter 1016:
    • Ulti just won't quit. She nearly got her side blown off by Big Mom and is running on fumes, and she still manages to catch up to Nami, Usopp and Tama at the stage.
    • Fortunately, Nami and a miraculously-surviving Zeus manage to trump Ulti's awesome moment with their own. Zeus managed to cling to life by accidentally letting some of his soul slip into Nami's Clima-Tact, turning it into a homie that doubles as a Morph Weapon — and this time he's completely loyal to his new master. Nami and Zeus team up, and together they finally take Ulti down for good.
    • Props to Usopp; Nami initially can't attack Ulti because the Headliner is holding Tama, so Usopp, despite being beaten down, fires a Green Star Sargasso to help Tama escape. Then, once Ulti is beaten, he captures Bao-Huang with a Green Star Devil so Tama can use Bao-Huang's connection to the Marys so she can talk to all of the Dango-eating Gifters on Onigashima!
    • With Luffy temporarily out of the action, Yamato steps up to bat against his father, and while he's fully aware there's no way he can defeat Kaido without Luffy's help, he's ready to Hold the Line for Luffy to get back into it with him. This is followed by the firm declaration that once Kaido is deposed, Yamato is going to take to the seas... as a member of the Straw Hat Pirates. Yamato also got Kaido to take him seriously as the latter went straight into his hybrid form to fight.
  • Chapter 1017:
    • Tama did it. Using the kidnapped Bao-Huang, she sent her orders to the entire island. The result is every SMILE user on Onigashima who ate Tama's millet dumplings (which at this point is most of them) pulling a Manchurian Agent and allying with the Straw Hats. Thanks to Tama, the Animal Kingdom Pirates' numbers advantage has diminished to the point that the Straw Hats can now turn their full attention to the Lead Performers and the Tobi Roppo.
    • Though that's not to say the Animal Kingdom Pirates are making it easy. Queen, having been sufficiently incensed by Sanji, reveals his past. He was a part of the same research group as Judge, known as MADS, and decides to show how more of his cybernetics combined with his hybrid form, which results in a gigantic man with dinosaur skin and several unfriendly-looking robot limbs. Despite this intimidation tactic, Sanji is unfazed in the slightest and is regarding the Calamity with pure annoyance more then anything.
    • Meanwhile in response to the chaos, Who's-Who of the Tobi Roppo has also realized he needs to get serious, fighting against Jimbei, and starts busting out Rokushiki techniques in tandem with his Sabertooth powers — turns out Who's-Who’s a former CP9 agent. His combination attacks rip the room apart like a knife through butter.
      • Why is a CP9 Agent now working as a pirate? Twelve years prior, a Devil Fruit he was in charge of transporting was stolen off his ship by pirates, which he was promptly fired and imprisoned for. Which Devil Fruit did the pirates steal? The Gum-Gum Fruit.
      • Not only that, the fact that a CP9 agent was tasked with guarding the Fruit means that the World Government considered the Gum-Gum Fruit valuable enough to protect- and the Red Hair Pirates still managed to steal it.
    • Not that Jimbei lets any of that scare him. In fact, before Tama's announcement, the First Son of the Sea makes it clear he fully expected a 5K vs 30K war, and that he's not going to complain about the very uneven odds. When Who's Who whips out the Rokushiki moves, Jimbei counters easily, even blocking a Tempest Kick with his bare arm.
      Jimbei: Should I call this Iron Body, then?
  • Chapter 1018:
    • Jimbei vs Who's-Who, a battle between a former Warlord and CP9 agent! Who's-Who unleashes a blitz of his Six Powers techniques on the First Son of the Sea, never letting up while making derogatory comments about fishmen. But Jimbei takes it all without flinching — when Who's-Who unleashes a rapid-fire Finger Pistol, the Tobi Roppo ends up breaking his fingers. Jimbei steps on Who's-Who's tail to keep him from running away from one heckuva punch to the face.
      Jimbei: If you're going to run your mouth about history... DEMON BRICK FIST!!! ...Be ready for what you're stepping into first!!
    • Tama ends up making even more Animal Kingdom members turn to the Straw Hat's side than expected, as the brainwashed Headliners take their non-brainwashed subordinates with them. With this, we get the new numbers for the armies: 16,000 on the Animal Kingdom side, 9,000 on the Straw Hats side, with the strength of the rogue SMILE users making up the difference. It suddenly seems like the Straw Hats can win this war, and CP0 has realized it; formerly confident that the Straw Hats had no chance, they're now preparing to pull a Villain: Exit, Stage Left (after confirming that Who's-Who has been silenced).
  • Chapter 1019: With the Gifters changing sides, Sasaki enters his hybrid form. And with this form's flying ability (see the Funny page), the Tobi Roppo now has an edge in speed and maneuverability! In earlier showings, the General Franky decimated its foes, but Sasaki ends up overwhelming it, even breaking the Franken with his Screw Sword. Knowing that a protracted battle won't end well, Franky pulls out the stops and blasts Sasaki into the air with the General Cannon! When Sasaki recovers from that and goes into a divebomb, Franky ejects from the cockpit as the triceratops-man crashes into the robot and fires his Radical Beam into Sasaki's earlier wound!
  • Chapter 1020:
    • Yamato shows he's on near equal ground to Kaido, thanks to the Mythical Devil Fruit he ate that allows him to transform into a divine wolf.
    • Black Maria creates illusions of Robin's loved ones (Olvia, Clover, and Saul), but she quickly sees through them and slaps them.
    • Brook goes into soul mode and easily dispatches Black Maria's Wanyudo weapon.
    • As Brook takes care of the rabble, Robin takes on Black Maria by herself, and shows she is not to be messed with. By summoning "Gigante Fleur", sprouting a giant Robin.
  • Chapter 1021:
    • After more than a decade of not getting a simple one-on-one fight like many of her contemporaries, Robin finally gets a chance to show her stuff against a peer opponent. Despite Black Maria's webs and brute force, Robin unveils Demonio Fleur, creating a giant demonic-looking version of herself, and crushes the Tobi Roppo member with a single joint lock.
    • When Black Maria sets her webs on fire to create a massive blaze, Robin creates a giant hand and palm strikes the ceiling, burying the fire with the rubble!
    • Brook then follows up by taking down Maria's lackies, including one of the Numbers, with a slash in the shape of a treble clef.
    • Momonosuke asking Shinobu to age him into an adult so that he can help save Wano.
  • Chapter 1022:
    • Perospero is about to snipe Sanji with a candy arrow, only for Cat Viper to ambush and send the villain flying.
    • Zoro and Sanji counterattack against King and Queen and this was after Marco referred to them (Zoro and Sanji) as the star players.
      • Marco's comment alongside the chapter title ("The Stars Take the Stage") plus the ending chapter comment ("The Two Wings in Action!") really puts into perspective the crucial role Sanji and Zoro serve among the Straw Hats AND serves as a Call-Back to Robin's claim regarding Sanji during her fight against Black Maria.
      Robin: He's one of the wings that'll allow the Pirate King to soar!!
    • This short exchange between Zoro and Sanji just straight up sends shivers down your spine.
      Zoro: Hey Curly Brows, if we win this—
      Sanji: I know, it'll finally be in sight... Luffy becoming King of the Pirates!!
  • Chapter 1023:
    • King and Queen get back up, barely fazed by Zoro and Sanji's opening strikes. The duo take it in stride, dodging Queen's blaster fire and blocking King's sword strikes like pros.
    • Sanji makes an interesting remark in passing about how he's body's felt a little different — but not in a bad way — since he started wearing the Raid Suit. Is it possible he's about to receive a power-up?
    • When Queen demands to know if Sanji's fiery legs are the result of some kind of cybernetic modification from Germa 66, Sanji shoots down that theory by pointing out he's all human.
    • King's sword turns out to have sawteeth that can trap an opponent's swords. He does this on Zoro's two main blades, then forces them aside to hurl a punch at Zoro. Zoro's counter? Blocking that punch with the sword in his jaws, then catching his two main swords to keep fighting.
      • Kawamatsu and Hyogoro, watching this, remark that Zoro reminds them of the Daimiyo of Ringo, Shimotsuki Ushimaru, right down to the three-sword style. And they happen to drop another bombshell... Lord Ushimaru was the descendant of Ryuma!
    • Jack, meanwhile, is about to crush Dogstorm...only for the latter to go Sulong thanks to a hole in the roof, judo-throwing Jack out of the palace and into the courtyard. And while that's happening, Cat Viper joins Wanda and Carrot in confronting Perospero... and he's going Sulong too, intent on avenging Pedro!
    • Raizou matches the Oniwaban leader ninjitsu for ninjitsu, shutting down the latter's mockery by proclaiming that Momonosuke will grow up to be a fine young man.
    • And the big kicker, for the end of the chapter: Momonosuke's gambit worked. Thanks to Shinobu's powers, he now has the body of a 28-year-old man... and, in his transformed state, the body of a magnificent adult dragon. And he's prepared to carry Luffy back to Kaidou for the final round!
  • Chapter 1024:
    • Usopp shows what a powerful liar he is when he convinces a bunch of Beast Pirates that he has Conqueror's Haki (when it was really Big Mom's own Haki that was leaking all over).
    • Yamato had Conqueror's Haki since they were eight. Showing how strong they were even as a kid.
    • The unnamed Samurai (more than likely Shimotsuki Ushimaru) willingly giving his food to Yamato, saying again that Samurai do not get hungry. He also manages to cut down the stone barrier despite the lack of nourishment.
  • Chapter 1025:
    • Yamato matches Kaidou blow for blow throughout the chapter, instead of suffering from the Worf Effect like Rebecca did in Dressrosa. They're evenly matched up till the end of the chapter, but more on that in a bit...
      • This includes refuting Kaidou's claim that they were always alone, citing Ace and the samurai who helped her in the past.
      • Not to be outdone, Kaido retorts that Yamato's friends ended up dying, and how Yamato must rely on their own strength alone.
    • While Momonosuke's still afraid of heights, his grown-up dragon form is apparently durable enough that ramming through Onigashima's castle — he's flying with his eyes shut, you see — barely fazes him.
    • Finally, at the climax of the chapter, Luffy guides Momo back to the top of Onigashima just as Yamato rallies and charges Kaidou. The end result is Luffy going Gear Fourth (Snake Man) just in time to land a Jet Culverin on Kaidou at the same time as Yamato delivering a White Serpent strike. Kaidou gets flung backwards, once again taking visible damage.
    • Undeterred, Kaidou re-emerges in full dragon form, demanding to know who this other dragon is. Despite being visibly frightened, Momonosuke rallies his nerve and announces himself alongside Luffy, who's giving his own Badass Boast.
      Luffy: Nothing you do is going to kill me! I'm the man who will be king of the pirates!
      Momonosuke: And...and my...my name is...Kozuki Momonosuke! The man who will be shogun of Wano!
  • Chapter 1026:
    • Momo might not have fire breath like Kaido, but he's able to dodge the latter's Blast Breath technique all the same. Keep in mind that aged-up or not, he's mentally still a kid; and he's still able to dodge shots from the man who traumatized him.
    • Luffy convinces Momo to try and bite Kaido. While it doesn't do any lasting damage, it still makes Kaido roar out in pain.
      • More importantly, it shows how far Momo's grown — despite insisting that it's impossible for him to do that, he starts flashing back to when Kaido killed his mother, and how terrified he was...and then Momo gets furious, and lunges for Kaido. Even when the latter seems unharmed and demands to know what Momo's thinking, Momo keeps biting, seething about how he's lost his parents to this monster.
      • Even better, when Luffy declares that after biting one of the Four Emperors, nothing should seem scary for Momo anymore, the latter agrees...which means that he's not scared of flying now, and will be able to hold up Onigashima.
    • Luffy's pep talk to Momo is carried down to the rest of Onigashima, and when he announces that he's going to beat Kaido, every member of the resistance starts cheering wildly, their morale boosted like nothing else.
    • Luffy and Kaido resume their battle, with Luffy declaring that even if he's lost to Kaido twice, so long as he's standing, anything is possible.
      • Take note of what happens during their initial clash — the Haki infused into their blows splits the sky, a Call-Back to when Red-Haired Shanks and Whitebeard did the same thing. This is solid proof that Luffy's new title in the papers isn't just hype — he really has reached the same level as the Emperors.
      • Further adding to the moment of awesome? During the clash, Kaido swings his kanabo attack with two hands. Meanwhile, Luffy's using a single fist...without stretching it at all. And all the same, Luffy's blow is still EQUAL to Kaido's.
    • Oh, and that clash of Haki that the splits off the sky? It reveals the full moon again, allowing Catviper and Dogstorm to assume their Sulong forms just as Perospero and Jack were about to finish them off. This development turns the fight completely around, with Catviper and Dogstorm finishing off Perospero and Jack respectively with a single blow apiece, avenging both Pedro and the agony unleashed on Zou.
  • Chapter 1027:
    • Yamato's still processing the aforementioned sky-splitting. Just like when Roger and Whitebeard would fight in Oden's journal.
    • It's subtle, but after getting bitten by him in the last chapter, Kaido calls Momonosuke out by his name, whereas the most acknowledgement he could muster before was calling him boy or brat. It's clear that even though it failed to do any real damage, Momonosuke's stunt impressed Kaido.
    • While Luffy's duking it out singlehandedly with Kaido, Yamato and Momonosuke notice that chunks of Onigashima are starting to chip off the main part. What's more, the Flame Clouds holding the island up are weakening. Proof that Kaido is getting tired.
    • Of course, that means that if Onigashima falls out of the sky, the whole capital will be destroyed, including the citizens. Momonosuke panics because even if his dragon powers can generate Flame Clouds like Kaido's, he's not sure he'd be able to prop up the whole island in time. Plus if Luffy takes down Kaido prematurely, that'll instantly negate the Clouds present. Momo considers going back to tell Luffy to hold off... and Yamato gives him a good conk on the head, reminding him that Luffy's already got enough on his plate. Their job right now is to handle Onigashima, so that's what they'll do.
    • The Zoro vs. King fight continues, and it shows no signs of easing up. King's mask got damaged, which has pissed him off, and now he's putting some serious effort into killing our favorite three-swordsman. This is very impressive of both parts:
    • At one point, King does succeed in knocking Zoro off of Onigashima. The Pirate Hunter uses a Razor Wind technique to propel himself back up!
  • Chapter 1028:
    • Sanji's battle with Queen continues, with neither letting up. Queen launches Sanji into a wall with his mechanical fist, but Sanji is barely fazed and counters with Bien Cuit: Grill Shot, the same moved he used against the Kraken!
      • Even though Queen took next to no damage from it, he compliments the attack, saying it packs a good punch. He then reveals the utterly nonsensical ability to separate himself from his legs, turning himself into a snake that can crush even masters of Armament Haki under its coils.
      • Even though he was in pain from the attack with Queen confident that he is dead, Sanji gets up just as quickly as he went down, his bones not having broken, but bent. As he snaps his body parts back into place, Queen goes for a sucker punch with his sword. The blade snaps like a twig on Sanji's neck, with Sanji looking thoroughly unimpressed by the attempt on his life. Sanji's Raid Suit has awakened his dormant genetic modifications, and it's made him much, MUCH stronger.
  • Chapter 1029:
    • Killer continues to be the MVP of the raid. Understanding how Hawkins' powers work, he slices off his left arm, knowing the damage will not transfer as Kid doesn't have a left arm. Then Hawkins summons his Strawman with the Death card, but Killer effortlessly decapitates it. With his trump card taken out, Hawkins scrambles for something new, only for Killer to slice him down the middle. Victorious, Killer wishes his partner good luck.
    • Sanji's new Germa power-up shows that he's now immune to bullets.
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