All spoilers regarding the Super Rookies era are unmarked. Examples relating to the New World era can be spoiler-tagged if deemed necessary.
Also known as the "Underwater Prison" or the "Great Prison", Impel Down is the World Government's prison for all kinds of criminals and pirates. Imagine a fusion between Alcatraz and the "Inferno" of The Divine Comedy and you get the idea.
The prison is divided into six levels, each signified by a number. The higher the number, the deeper the level extends underwater. The bounties of the prisoners scale linearly with the prison level. Each level has its own methods of torture:
- Level 1: Crimson Hell: The prisoners are forced to run from the guards and the blue gorillas through a forest made of trees with leaves as sharp as razors. For this reason, the leaves, stained by the prisoners' blood, appear red. If one wants to avoid the torture, there's a giant hole that leads to Level 2. Buggy used to be in this level, and avoided torture thanks to his Devil Fruit ability.
- Level 2: Beast Hell: The halls are inhabited by dangerous beasts like manticores, giant scorpions, and a basilisk who chase and devour any prisoner they encounter, all while a large sphinx guards the exit. For this reason, the prisoners prefer to stay in the jail cells. Buggy says that all the prisoners on this level have a bounty higher than his (15 million berries). Galdino used to be kept on this level.
- Level 3: Starvation Hell: This level is hot and has a desert-like terrain. The prisoners are kept in a near death state, fed just enough water and food to keep them from starving. All the criminals with a bounty higher than 50 million berries are kept here. Bentham also used to be here, despite having a bounty of 32 million.
- Level 4: Inferno Hell: This level is even hotter than Level 3 (whose heat in fact comes from the level below) due to the presence of a large pool with boiling blood. Here, the prisoners are constantly working supplying wood logs in the pool or under torture. Daz Bones used to be kept in this level.
- Level 5: Frozen Hell: In contrast to the level above, this one is a desolate tundra where prisoners either die because of the freezing cold (which is so intense the prisoners lose pieces of their bodies due to frostbite) or starvation (due to the food becoming frozen and inedible). In this level there is also the wolf unit that hunts down the prisoners. The wolves used to be kept on Level 2 with the other beasts, but they were transferred to Level 5 because the wolves used to hunt down and eat the other beasts! Criminals with a bounty higher than 100 million are kept here, and Magellan sends Luffy here after having captured him.
- Level 5.5: New Kama Land: Not an actual level, but a hidden and secret sublevel carved long ago. It's inhabited by the okamas and ruled by "Queen" Ivankov. After the latter escapes with Luffy, Bentham becomes the new "Queen".
- Level 6: Infinite Hell: The lowest level, reserved exclusively for criminals so strong and/or dangerous that they are basically "erased" from history, to the point that even this level's existence is considered a legend. The prisoners are fed and left alone, letting them die out of boredom, such as Shiki who, after a while, was almost Driven to Suicide. Ace used to be here before being moved for his execution. Jimbei, Crocodile, and some of the new Blackbeard Pirates used to be here too. After his defeat and capture, Doflamingo is being kept here.
- The Alcatraz: It's the One Piece world's best prison. The only ones able to escape are Shiki, who had to sacrifice his own legs, and Luffy, with the help of many strong allies and lots of luck.
- Boring, but Practical: A literal example in Level 6. The prisoners there are so tough that every torture method available is ineffective on them. So how does one punish someone that strong? The answer is: you don't. You just feed them and leave them alone until they want to die out of sheer boredom.
- Circles of Hell: While Impel Down is not exactly hell, it's based off the Inferno from The Divine Comedy, which codifies this trope, and every level has a different torture.
- Hellhole Prison: This prison is one of the worst portrayed in fiction, with only the toughest prisoners able to endure the terrifying tortures without going crazy or wishing to die. Considering how some of the staff members are dressed like devils and the levels are like Circles of Hell, it's the closest it can get to a literal example of the trope.
- Homage: The prison is built like Hell in The Divine Comedy.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: As with every organization in One Piece, the higher the rank of a guard, the stronger they are. The nameless mooks are all beaten easily by Luffy, while the warden, Magellan, proves too strong for Luffy to handle, even with the combined effort with other prisoners. The under-warden, Hannyabal, is also a very competent fighter, despite lacking any Devil Fruit ability. This gets subverted after Magellan gets demoted while Hannyabal becomes the new warden.
- Gender Bender: One of the staff is a recipient of Ivankov's ability. Surprisingly, they react well to their "true form" and help Ivankov as a result.
- Good Is Not Nice: Despite their affiliation with the World Government, most of the wardens are actually good people who want to protect the citizens from the criminals they imprison. However, they have no qualms with inflicting inhuman and cruel tortures on the prisoners.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: While the torture they inflict on the prisoners is horrifying, said prisoners are all wanted criminals who have probably committed heinous crimes.
- Prongs of Poseidon: The Weapon of Choice of Impel Down's mooks is a trident, to reflect its Dante's inferno-esque inspiration.
- Putting on the Reich: The commanding guards and wardens are typically dressed in this fashion (except for Hannyabal), especially Magellan, right down to the arm band. Despite this, they're, for the most part, good guys and have good intentions.
High Ranking Staff Officers
(Former) Chief Warden / Under Warden Magellan
Voiced by: Mitsuaki Hoshino (JP), Jeremy Inman (EN)
Age: 45 (Pre-Timeskip), 47 (Post-Timeskip)
Debut: Chapter 528 (Manga), Episode 425 (Anime)
Devil Fruit: Venom-Venom Fruit
Magellan is the chief warden of Impel Down, the most feared and impenetrable prison/dungeon in the One Piece world. As such, he is a very imposing man with a very stern, business-like manner. Even when things get out of hand, he keeps up his professional manner, inspiring hope and admiration in much of the prison staff. Forms a bit of an Odd Couple with Under-Warden Hannyabal, a Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass Starscream, who, despite his eccentricities, Magellan endorses as his successor.
Magellan has the power of poison, granted by the Venom-Venom Fruit (Doku Doku no Mi), and is consequently one of the most dangerous fighters in the story. He can cover himself and others with poisonous corrosive slime, and emit poison gas (which he's able to breathe without issue). The effects of his poison can manifest themselves in a variety of ways, from blinding tear gas to paralyzing neurotoxins. As a side effect, Magellan has taken a liking to actually ingesting poison, and while it can't kill him, it gives him severe bowel troubles, forcing him to spend much of his time relieving himself. After the Impel Down arc, he gets beaten to an inch of his life and has to be hospitalized and sedated to prevent him from killing himself. He eventually gets over it, but is still demoted to Under Warden during the Time Skip, much to his dismay.
- Acid Attack: His Devil Fruit grants him power over multiple kinds of poison, including a corrosive one, which Magellan drips from his horns to fight.
- Acquired Poison Immunity: Parodied. Thanks to his Devil Fruit, he can eat poisonous food. However, they give him diarrhea, so he's busy on the toilet most of the time.
- Advancing Boss of Doom: Once Magellan gets involved, most of the focus is on staying ahead of him because very few people in Impel Down can seriously challenge him. Once he enters his Venom Demon form, though, he becomes this in truth: a rapidly-advancing wall of red sludge so toxic it can even infect stone, much less any hapless prisoner who failed to outrun it.
- Arc Villain: He's the primary antagonist of the Impel Down arc, and never appears following that arc, but he's by no means an actual villain.
- Bad Boss: Subverted with Hannyabal. Despite their bickering, they get along occasionally. Played straight with other subordinates as he usually breathes poison gas on them to keep them in line. Also, he doesn't show any hesitation of using his poison attacks while they are in the vicinity.
- Bad Powers, Good People: You'd think there wouldn't be much "good" to do with a power that revolves entirely around fatally poisoning mass amounts of people. But Magellan put it to good use by becoming the warden of world's toughest prison, where most of the inmates certainly deserve a good poison bath.
- Blade Below the Shoulder: His horns are detachable and can be worn on his hands to function as this. He can also infuse them with his poison to make them more lethal.
- Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Spends very little time actually doing his job on account of being occupied in the bathroom suffering intense bouts of diarrhea for several hours a day, but God help you if you have to actually face him. A slight subversion in his case though, as when Shiryu was still Head Jailer (replaced by Sadi Chan), Shiryu was actually considered more dangerous because he was actually around more often, and likely too competent for his job for his own good.
- Combat Pragmatist: He has his silly moments, but during fights, he does not screw around. When he runs across Blackbeard's crew, he doesn't even bother asking why they're there without official permission; he just one-shots them all on sight.
- Claustrophobia: Inverted. It was hinted he had the opposite problem agoraphobia, the fear of open spaces making him well-suited to his job as warden of the facility.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Magellan is one of the strongest fighters of the One Piece world and prefers doing a quick job rather than playing with his foes, therefore he tends to use the Doku-Doku fruit powers to immediately poison his enemies and making them unable to fight back. His fight with Luffy doesn't last long and the latter only manages to hit Magellan once before succumbing to the poison and later, during the riot at Impel Down,the Blackbeard Pirates invade the prison and Magellan just bathes the whole crew in poison and leaves them writhing in pain while he continues to pursue the jailbreakers. The second time around, though, he's not so lucky as Blackbeard has gathered stronger allies from the Level 6.
- Dangerous Forbidden Technique/Poison Is Corrosive: His ultimate poison Kinjite (literally "Foul Hand"), which he uses in Hell's Judgement technique, which he's forbidden from using because it can potentially melt all of Impel Down.
- Deadly Gas: He can make not only liquid poison, which is his most used type, but also poisonous gas.
- Demoted to Dragon: Almost literally. After failing to prevent the escape of many prisoners, led by Luffy, he gets demoted to Under Warden during the timeskip.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Dresses like an SS officer and uses poison gas, yet, he's an heroic character.
- The Dreaded: Most characters react to the idea of Magellan appearing the same way — with an Oh, Crap!. The only people that ever try to pick a fight with him are usually over confident, unaware of his strength, or Too Dumb to Live.
- Driven to Suicide: He's so distraught about allowing so many prisoners to escape Impel Down that he has to be sedated to keep him from killing himself in shame.
- Everyone Has Standards: Although Magellan is very cruel towards the prisoners, former Chief Jailer Shiryu's rampages across Impel Down killing off prisoners had made Magellan less than pleased, particularly as he had no damn reason for doing so, and Magellan was forced to imprison Shiryu in Level 6 as he was far too dangerous to be ignored.
- Godzilla Threshold: Faced with a prison riot, an escape attempt involving countless Level 6 prisoners, and the sudden appearance of Blackbeard, he authorizes Shiryu's temporary release to deal with the latter. He really, really doesn't want to resort to that, but considering Impel Down is being attacked by no less than three separate groups at once (two of which containing some serious heavy hitters), he's kind of out of options. Too bad for him, Shiryu ends up betraying him to join the Blackbeard Pirates.
- Good Is Not Nice: His methods are rather brutal and can hurt his own subordinates, but his main goal is to keep those dangerous criminals locked up so they don't harm innocent civilians.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: After getting in another fight with the Blackbeard Pirates and their newly acquired members, he gets beaten badly and is left with some scars on his face, which are still present after two years.
- Hero Antagonist: He's brutal, but still fair and reasonable; the only reason that he's even coming into conflict with Luffy is because Luffy's goals (freeing Ace) just so happens to conflict with his own (keeping order and making sure that a bunch of incredibly powerful and dangerous criminals stay locked up). If it wasn't for the conflict of interest, he'd be more than happy to live and let live.
- Horn Attack: Played With. His "horns" are fake and he can detach them to wear them on his hands as weapons.
- Horned Humanoid: Subverted. He has a pair of long horns that help give him a demonic appearance, but they're actually fake.
- Implacable Man: In the second half of the Impel Down arc, he pursues Luffy and the escaped prisoners without leaving them any time to breathe, and becomes an almost-literal Advancing Wall of Doom after activating his deadliest poison. No one wants to fight him, anyone who gets caught in his poison is left for dead so more people don't die, and by the last chapter of the arc, only a very small percentage of the original escapees manage to get out alive. However, later subverted off-screen. Turns out he gets beaten to within an inch of his life after Luffy has left, by the Blackbeard Pirates and their new recruits.
- It's Personal: At first he only tries to stop Luffy from escaping because it's his job. But when he finds Hannyabal beaten badly from his fight with Luffy, that gives him more motivation to stop Luffy.
- The Juggernaut: Let's be clear about something. The entire second half of the Impel Down Arc basically amounts to Luffy and the gang running away from this guy. And that's not even going into when he uses Venom Demon: after that, Mr. 3's wax (Elemental RockPaperScissors which is immune to his normal poison) can barely slow him down for a few moments.
- Large and in Charge: He's both tall and really broad and is the chief warden of the prison. After the time-skip, he's the under warden.
- Made of Iron: And how! Even by the standards of this show, Magellan is ridiculously durable. The man's tanked everything from bullets to cannon fire and it doesn't seem to even faze him. Even Luffy's Gear Second attacks, which could seriously injure a normal opponent and send them flying through a room, can at the most bring him to his knees. The only real wound he suffers is a blow to the forehead from his fight with Ivankov, not that it did much. This record gets broken when he is beaten by the Blackbeard Pirates, who give him some scars on his face.
- Make an Example of Them: If you fuck with him in front of other prisoners, he will reduce you to sludge on the spot to show them what happens when you piss him off. It's quite good at helping him maintain order because no one wants to be the next "example".
- Mighty Glacier: Never moves at a pace faster than a brisk walk. He moves faster using Venom Road, but he only does so to reach places he can't get to via walking. Still, he's hard to take down and it's better avoid his attacks at all costs.
- My Greatest Failure: He's so broken after having failed to prevent the escape that he has to be sedated to prevent him from committing suicide, and doesn't protest when he's demoted from chief warden.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: His fight with Luffy where he nearly killed him resulted in Luffy gaining poison resistance so high he is practically immune to it, allowing him to fight later enemies that also use poisons, like Caeser.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Luffy tried to do what had always worked until then and thought being The Determinator would let him blow right past Magellan. It didn't end well for him.
- No-Nonsense Nemesis: He does not fuck around. If he thinks you're a threat, he doesn't even bother asking any questions and just goes straight for the kill.
- Obviously Evil: Subverted; despite his appearance and what not, his goals and motives are only technically evil in the sense that they conflict with Luffy's. If anything, he's more of a Knight Templar, in that anyone who comes to his prison must be a terrible criminal. For the most part, he's correct. However, he does work for the World Government, which means that people they deem as too dangerous, which could be even as simple as political dissidents, could land there.
- One-Man Army: He could kill every single person in Impel Down if he wanted to. He has also one-shotting the Blackbeard Pirates simultaneously.
- The Paralyzer: He can generate all kinds of poisons, including paralytics.
- Person of Mass Destruction: He could potentially destroy all of Impel Down if he decided to.
- Poisonous Person: His Devil Fruit allows him to produce and control different types of poisons, from toxic gas to paralytic neurotoxins and all the way to hyper-corrosive acid.
- Punch-Clock Villain: The most straight up example here. He is merely doing his job and keeping dangerous inmates in prison. He only comes into conflict with Luffy because the latter is attempting to break Ace out of jail, something he cannot allow.
- Purple Is Powerful: His poison is a sickly purple looking colour and is a powerful paralysis-inducing toxin. Said power also makes Magellan one of the most dangerous person of the One Piece world.
- Rank Up: Inverted. Because he couldn't prevent the mass escape, he goes from chief warden to under-warden.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Magellan's eyes becomes red when he summons his Kinjite poison, his most dangerous technique that, if hold up for too long, can destroy Impel Down itself.
- Red Right Hand: Subverted. Despite his demonic appearance and Bulgori-like hands, he is only evil in the fact that he's working for the World Government, and is just trying to keep bloodthirsty criminals behind bars.
- Shaping Your Attacks: Hydra is hydra-shaped while Venom Demon: Judgemant of Hell takes the shape of a huge skull-faced demon.
- Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Subverted. While his overall strength is unclear in comparison to characters such as the shichibukai or the Admirals, he still has one of the best combat performances of any Arc Villain. He's one of the few villains in the series to hand Luffy a complete and utter defeat without any rematch thus far. Later enemies in the New World, especially those that use poison, are less of a threat due to Luffy's own experience with Magellan's poison.
- Story-Breaker Power: Magellan has the Toxin-Toxin Devil Fruit, one of the most effective Devil Fruits in the series. Everything about him, from his sweat, to his skin, to even his breath is all poisonous and he has different varieties from poison that acts like tears gas to poison that can make your skin melt. He can also generate massive waves of poison out of himself, create hydra heads of pure poison to attack people, and any contact with him or his attacks instantly poisons the target. His poison is so powerful that it can kill a person within minutes unless an antidote is administered. However, if you get hit by too many poisons, then you're too far gone to be cured and are sentenced to a slow and painful death. The worst part is even if you have some sort of ability that could block the poison, such as Mr 3's Wax-Wax Fruit, he can just make his poison so strong that it'll melt steel. Plus, he isn't even a Logia type, so he doesn't have any of the usual weaknesses of a Logia Devil Fruit user.
- Super Strength: Even before he powers himself up with poisonous food, he's stronger than most men, given his huge size. Poisoned food, used to fuel his powers, cranks it up to superhuman levels.
- Superpower Lottery: Magellan's ability to manipulate poison makes him a very deadly opponent. His ability to coat himself in a layer of poison makes it nigh impossible for opponents to fight him in close combat without killing themselves. And if you try to run away, he has many ranged options such as Hydra, Venom Blowfish, or Venom Road. When he really means it, he can also use Hell's Judgement above. And even without his poison, Magellan himself is a hulking tank of a man who is ungodly tough to take down. With this kind of powerset, is it any wonder he's the warden of a maximum security prison?
- Technicolor Toxin: Usually purple, unless he gets mad. In that case, it turns red.
- Terror Hero: Well, not a hero by any means, but in the grand scheme of things, he's generally a morally good character whose take-no-shit attitude and tendency to go straight for the kill is designed to sow fear among prisoners to help make maintaining order easier. Given the fact that the prison holds some of the world's worst criminals and a breakout would spell disaster, this is not the worst approach to take.
- Touch of Death: Played Straight and Subverted, in a way. If you're a normal person (as in not a Determinator), you'll die if he touches you all right; but it won't be painless and instantaneous. You will suffer.
- Trademark Favorite Food: His favorite food is the poison soup (which he can eat because of his Devil Fruit) and he likes it so much that he eats it despite knowing that it will cause him to spend hours on the toilet.
- Tranquil Fury: Spends the second half of the arc boiling mad from everything that's happening but keeping it all under the surface.
- Tyke Bomb: A SBS reveals that he had his Poison abilities since he was a small child, but fortunately Magellan just didn't have the disposition to effectively use it then. He also didn't have a very happy childhood because of it, either.
- Top-Heavy Guy: He's a large, imposing man but his legs are really tiny.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: Despite his arguments with Hannyabal, Magellan is noticeably upset when he finds him defeated by Luffy and states that he will not accept anyone else as his successor if he dies.
- Walking Wasteland: The Venom Demon technique melts everything around Magellan.
- Wardens Are Evil: Subverted. With his demonic appearance, Nazi-esque uniform, poison powers, and ruthless disposition, many prisoners naturally fear him. But he really means well, and he makes a point that the prisoners have to be confined, lest they would terrorize the populace. He's also disgusted at the murderous antics of his former colleague Shiryu, so much so that he ordered him to be imprisoned.
- Winged Humanoid: Has two large wings on his back to go with his overall devil motif. Subverted as they're actually fake.
- Wings Do Nothing: And apparently they are just a part of his uniform.
- You Shall Not Pass!: He's determined to not let anyone out of Impel Down.
Chief Warden Hannyabal
Voiced by: Tetsuo Goto (JP), Brad Jackson (EN)
Age: 33 (Pre-Timeskip), 35 (Post-Timeskip)
Debut: Chapter 526 (Manga), Episode 422 (Anime)
Easily one of the greatest examples of The Starscream in manga and anime, Hannyabal is the overly ambitious under-warden of Impel Down. He appears to be a tall man with a pot-belly and a massive chin, wearing a pharaoh's headress. His continuous Freudian Slips about his desire to become Warden and silly antics often gain the ire of Magellan, who either Dope Slaps him, or outright poisons him in anger. Despite his finding him irritating and too ambitious, Magellan considers Hannyabal as his only worthy successor to Chief Warden of Impel Down.
As of the timeskip, he achieves his dream as he is now the Warden of Impel Down with former Jail Head, Domino, as his number two.
- Badass Normal: Just because he doesn't have a Devil Fruit power, doesn't mean he can't kick ass. He'd just rather not.
- Black-and-White Insanity: Discussed. While fighting Luffy to stop his escape, Hannyabal says that pirates are nothing but scum who, if they were to leave Impel Down, would terrorize the good citizens. While Hannyabal is not completely wrong, he says it to the good-natured Luffy. Right after his speech, Blackbeard knocks him out and tells him that the world is not just black and white.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Despite acting like a moron and getting yelled by Magellan most of the time, he's the Under-Warden for a good reason. And during the timeskip he even gets promoted.
- Determinator: Arguably rivaling Luffy himself. Luffy beats him to a bloody pulp and is in every way the better fighter, but Hannyabal refuses to go down. Blackbeard has to do a sneak attack to put an end to it.
- Distracted by the Sexy: Apparently something of a weakness of his. It's not just that he gets tricked by Mr. 2 disguised as Nami, it's that a flashback to his first day on the job has pretty much the exact same thing happening to him at the hands of a Vamp.
- Double Weapon: His naginata Bloodsucker (Kessui), which looks more like two katana merged at the hilts.
- Flaming Sword: His naginata's blade can be set on fire.
- Foreshadowing: Long before he serves any purpose but Butt-Monkey Plucky Comic Relief, some of the guards comments on his ability to walk through the superheated and supercooled floors of Impel Down with no ill effects. Implying he's not just an idiot.
- Formerly Fit: Not that he was the epitome of fitness before but, after the timeskip, he has gotten much fatter.
- Gonk: He has an actual "hannya" face and his body has a beer belly.
- Hero Antagonist: Arguably even moreso than Magellan. While he's an overly ambitious and duplicitous man, he lacks (at least overtly) the sadistic tendencies of his coworkers, and his real motivations are to protect the innocent people on the outside.
- Hidden Depths: Despite outwardly being a goofy Starscream among the Impel Down staff, when the chips are down he reveals himself to be a Determinator on the level of, or perhaps even more than Luffy, all to protect the innocent people of the world from the prisoners of Impel Down.
- Horned Humanoid: Unlike Magellan, whose horns appear to be fake, Hannyabal's horns are real and give him a demonic appearance, in line with the prison's Dante's Inferno theme.
- Lantern Jaw of Justice: Exaggerated — that long chin of his is a hint of his hidden sense of justice.
- Large and in Charge: He's not as big as Magellan, but is bigger than an average human and he's the second highest authority in the prison. Post Time Skip, he's in charge of Impel Down!
- Laughably Evil: Nearly every time you see this guy, he's acting or saying something that's funny. This abruptly stopped when he faced off against Luffy.
- Large Ham: His loud personality and his starscream attitude has been consistent since he was very young.
- Let's Get Dangerous!: Throughout the Impel Down arc, he's basically doing nothing so Magellan would be removed as Warden. When it becomes clear that Luffy might actually succeed, he puts his foot down and holds the line.
- Meaningful Name: His name is Hannyabal and has an actual "hannya" face.
- Mr. Vice Guy: Aside from his Starscream tendencies, he's a man willing to do anything to protect the innocent from the criminals.
- Nice Hat: He wears a nemes, which sets him apart from most of the staff. He also has an even nicer version of it special ordered and on standby for when he eventually becomes Warden. Unfortunately, he has to break it out prematurely when Mr. 2 steals his regular one.
- Number Two: To Magellan, he's the under-warden, and Magellan himself considers Hannyabal the only one worthy of succeeding him. He gets promoted after the Time Skip.
- Obviously Evil: Subverted. He certainly looks evil, and is willing to sell out his superior for a promotion, but his motivation is to protect the innocent.
- Punny Name: Hannyabal is a combination of both Hannya, the death mask his face resembles, and Hannibal.
- Passing the Torch: Despite not liking how he wants to take his place, Magellan says that Hannyabal is the only one worthy to succeed him. After the timeskip, he really becomes the new chief warden.
- Rank Up: After the timeskip, he actually does become the new chief warden of Impel Down.
- The Starscream: Openly declares his ambition to become chief, often in earshot of Magellan. Despite this, Magellan considers him to be a worthy successor.
- Theme Music Power-Up: Parodied. When Hannyabal uses his flaming naginata technique, he has guards in the background playing drums and singing a song to cheer him on.
- Walking Shirtless Scene: Hannyabal never wears a shirt. This is lampshaded by the guards when Mr. 2 posed as him, that even in the extreme temperatures of Level 4 and 5, Hannyabal would never wear anything but his pants to show how badass he is. Unfortunately, given his potbelly, it also doubles as Fan Disservice. Averted post-timeskip, as he wears a complete uniform after he becomes chief warden.
- You Shall Not Pass!: When push comes to shove, Hannyabal will not let criminals escape from Impel Down, even if he runs out of strength. When Luffy is about to escape, Hannyabal remains still and block his path, explaining he doesn't want violent criminals to run free and attack innocent people. However, Blackbeard puts a stop to Hannyabal's resistance.
Head Jailer Domino
Voiced by: Naomi Shindo; (JP), Haley Esposito (EN)
Debut: Chapter 526 (Manga), Episode 422 (Anime)
One of Impel Down's high officers. She's serious and strict, to the point of scolding Magellan, the chief warden, for spending too much time in the washroom.
She greets Hancock during her visit in the prison (actually a way for Luffy to sneak in) until she's petrified by her Devil Fruit power. After going back to normal, she doesn't remember being turned into stone and accomanies Boa Hancock to Magellan's office.
During the timeskip she's promoted to head jailer, a post left vacant after Shilew's arrest.
- Absolute Cleavage: After the timeskip she doesn't wear a shirt under her jacket, leaving her ample cleavage exposed.
- Ambiguously Gay: Domino, like most people, is affected by Boa Hancock's power, implying she does find her attractive. However, Boa's charm is shown multiple times to hit even the women.
- Coat Cape: Wears one to indicate her promotion to head jailer.
- Commissar Cap: Has one to complete her Nazi-esque uniform.
- Cool Shades: Wears a pair of red-jaded glasses.
- Failed a Spot Check: If she had done a decent body search, she would've realized Luffy was hiding in Hancock's coat.
- Informed Ability: To be a head jailer, she has to be one of the prison staff's strongest members, but she's never seen in action since Boa Hancock quickly petrifies her and Domino spends most of the arc as a statue.
- Meaningful Name: Domino comes from dominus, which refers to a person who has control over others, a fitting name for a high-ranked individual.
- Ms. Exposition: When Hancock visits Impel Down, Domino explains her (and the audience) many details about the prison, like the "baptism" of boiling water every prisoner has to endure, the denden mushi security and the newest Level 6 prisoners.
- Nice Girl: Domino is remarkably polite to Hancock during her visit to Impel Down, even assuring her that the full body search and Sea-Prism Stone Handcuffs where done simply out of keeping up the prison's reputation and not out of mistrust. Given that most of the Impel Down are Punch-Clock Villains it's likely she like this on her off hours too.
- No Badass to His Valet: It doesn't matter if Magellan is the prison's highest authority and can kill her at any time if he wants to, she still scolds him for wasting too much time in the washroom.
- Non-Action Guy: Domino is the only high-ranked officer who doesn't display any fighting skills. In fairness, she didn't have the time to show them since Boa Hancock petrify her before she could do anything.
- Passionate Sports Girl: In a drawing of her when she was a kid, she's playing football.
- Peek-a-Bangs: On top of wearing shades, her hair covers her right eye. She has had this haircut since she was a kid.
- Taken for Granite: Before she can spot Luffy, Boa Hancock turns her into stone with her Mero-Mero Fruit power. She gets back to normal but doesn't remember it.
- Whip It Good: She's carries a whip, though she's never seen using it.
Security Chief Sadi
Voiced by: Yuka Koyama (JP), Marissa Lenti (EN)
Age: 21 (Pre-Timeskip), 23 (Post-Timeskip)
Debut: Chapter 531 (Manga), Episode 432 (Anime)
The Security Chief of Impel Down and the one in command of the Jailer Beasts. She's a sadistic person who enjoys hearing the screams of her enemies (and even of her allies) and, fittingly for her sadist personality, she has a pitchfork with a concealed whip as a weapon of choice. She has a crush on Magellan.
When Luffy infiltrates Impel Down, she sends Minotaurus to stop him and is later assigned to guard Level 5's entrance. After Luffy, Ivankov, Jimbei, and Crocodile escape from Level 6 and defeat the Jailer Beasts, she angrily attacks them and fights Ivankov, who manages to tie her up using her own whip.
- Affectionate Nickname: Invoked, as she wants to be called Sadi-Chan. In the English dub she demands to be called 'Mistress Sadie', which is fitting given her dominatrix nature.
- Anti-Hero: A rare antagonistic example. While she's guarding a prison full of evil pirates, she enjoys whipping the prisoners a bit too much.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: She's in command of the Jailer Beasts and is said to be stronger than all four of them combined.
- Bad Boss: She's fond of whipping the Jailer Beasts as a punishment for their failures.
- Badass Cape: She's said to be stronger than the four Jailer Beasts combined and wears a large white cape.
- Badass Normal: She doesn't have any Devil Fruit but is much stronger than the Jailer Beasts, each of whom has an awakened Zoan Devil Fruit power.
- Bare Your Midriff: Hardly any of the midriff is covered.
- Blinding Bangs: Her long blonde hair covers her eyes.
- Bondage Is Bad: Downplayed. Despite being a sadist who enjoys torturing others for her own amusement, she is an officer working for the World Government.
- Combat Sadomasochist: As if her appearance doesn't make it clear. She also loves hearing the screams of her enemies in combat.
- Designated Girl Fight: Invoked by her opponent who, upon realizing he's facing a woman, uses his powers to switch gender.
- Dominatrix: She gets so sexually excited from the screams of others that she becomes a parody of it.
- The Dreaded: Not much by the prisoners but by the Jailer Beasts, her subordinates, each of whom is deathly afraid of making her angry. Given her habit of whipping them, it's pretty reasonable.
- Femme Fatalons: Her long nails aptly hint at her twisted sexual sadist self.
- Fragile Speedster: She manages to dodge most of Ivankov's attacks while destroying the walls, but once she loses her weapon, she goes down quickly.
- Horny Devil: Her stripperific outfit (which makes her look like a succubus), combined with her sadist and dominatrix-like personality give off this vibe.
- Lady in Red: Sadi is a sadistic woman dressed on a red BDSM-themed suit to go with a more devilish appearance. Downplayed in the anime, as it was changed to hot pink.
- Mama Bear: Despite being abusive towards them, she gets really angry if someone hurts the Jailer Beasts.
- Meaningful Name: Her name is, very fittingly, short for "sadist".
- Mix-and-Match Weapon: Her weapon is a pitchfork which conceals a whip, to combine her succubus-appearance and her dominatrix personality.
- Ms. Fanservice: She's a dominatrix who wears a very skimpy devil outfit and gets sexually excited when she makes the others scream by whipping them.
- Prongs of Poseidon: Like most of the guards, her Weapon of Choice is a pitchfork (which conceals a whip) to go with her demonic appearance.
- Smug Super: She refuse the marines' help, claiming Impel Down's staff is enough to catch Luffy. She's right, as Magellan captures and sends him to Level 5, but then he escapes along with some really strong prisoners...
- Stripperiffic: Her outfit leaves most of her skin exposed.
- They Call Me MISTER Tibbs!: She demands to be addressed as "Mistress" Sadi. If you don't, you shall be introduced to her whip.
- Token Evil Teammate: While most of the staff genuinely believe they're in the right, Sadi-chan just seems to be in it to torture people.
- Underboobs: Her outfit doesn't cover the lower half of her breasts.
- Unwilling Suspension: Ironically enough for a dominatrix, Ivankov defeats her and ties her to the ceiling with her own whip until Magellan rescues her.
- Verbal Tic: She often stops mid-speech to say "... mmmmm..." before continuing it.
- Whip It Good: To go with her Horny Devil/dominatrix theme, her main weapon is a pitchfork which can turn into a lash, and is strong enough to smash a large stone bridge.
Captain of the Guard Saldeath
Voiced by: Kazuya Nakai (JP), Orion Pitts (EN)
Age: 16 (Pre-Timeskip), 18 (Post-Timeskip)
Debut: Chapter 530 (Manga), Episode 431 (Anime)
One of the chief guards of Impel Down and the one in command of the Blugori of Level 1. He's a calm and level-headed person and is probably the least brutal of all the high ranked officers. He doesn't fight on his own but controls the Blugori using his flute.
During Luffy's infiltration, he tries to stop him in Level 3, but since the Blugori are easily defeated by him, he's sent to quell the riot in Level 2. After Luffy escapes again, Hannyabal sends him to Level 4 but he and his Blugori are defeated by Ivankov with a single blow.
After the timeskip, he has grown proportionately taller.
- Affably Evil: While he's more of a Hero Antagonist, he's the least brutal of all the staff, to the point that he says Luffy and his allies are lucky to be captured by him.
- I Got Bigger: After the timeskip, Saldeath goes from tiny to willowy.
- Improbable Age: He's a high-ranking warden in the worlds most important prison at only 16/18.
- Instrument of Murder: Saldeath's pitchfork is actually a flute, used to control the Blugori.
- Large and in Charge: Inverted. Despite being one of the high ranked officers, he's the shortest person in all the prison. Played straight after his growth spurt over the time-skip.
- Nice Hat: Wears a white horned hat with a black skull on it.
- Non-Action Guy: He doesn't fight himself, instead controls the Blugori with his flute to attack the enemy.
- Punny Name: In Japanese, his name sounds like Saru Desu, which means "I am a monkey". He doesn't like when someone mishears his name, like Luffy.
- Teens Are Short: Exaggerated. Saldeath is 16 years old and he's downright diminutive. Subverted following the timeskip, where he grows to 7'1" at 18 years old.
- Winged Humanoid: Subverted. He has a pair of black bat-like wings, but they're probably part of his uniform and cannot be used for flight.
Other Guards and Beasts
The Jailer Beasts
Four (five after the timeskip) strong guards under Sadi's authority. They have all eaten an unknown Zoan Devil Fruit and have awakened their power, giving them a strong healing factor that allows them to recover quickly.
Despite their dumb-looking appearance, they're all brutal guards who would gladly smash any rioting prisoners with their weapon, though they also have a big fear of Sadi.
Due to their great stamina and healing factor, they face Luffy and his allies multiple times (especially Minotaurus), but they always get defeated and, once Jimbei, Crocodile and Ivankov join Luffy in the escape, they basically stop being a threat.
After the time-skip, a fifth jailer beast, Minochihuahua, joins them.
Tropes pertaining to all of them:
- Animorphism: Each ate a Zoan Fruit and awoke its power, making them much thougher than usual. It borders with Informed Ability because they're always seen in their hybrid form, and it's confirmed that they've eaten a Devil Fruit because it's explained by Crocodile.
- Bare Your Midriff: A variety. Minotaurus's, Minozebra's and Minokoala's fur only covers part of their abdomens, leaving the middle completely uncovered.
- Beast Man: They are Zoan users and so far they've only been seen in their hybrid form, which makes them look more beast than human.
- Beware the Silly Ones: Don't be fooled by their goofy appearance, they're actual brutal guards and among the strongest in the prison.
- Black Bead Eyes: With the exception of Minozebra, they have little black dots as eyes.
- Blood Knight: Possibly because of their Zoan Devil Fruits, they are all ruthless and like brutalizing their enemies.
- The Dreaded: Because of their blood lust, they're the most feared individuals in the prison, right behind Magellan.
- Gonk: They all have silly body proportions, Black Bead Eyes (save for Minozebra) and snot that drips from their noses. It's not a good reason to underestimate them.
- Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Aside from Minorinocheros, who wears overalls, and, later, Minochihuahua, they only wear a pair of shorts.
- Implacable Man: Thanks to their "Awakened" Devil Fruit powers, they can heal from heavy injuries in a short period of time and it doesn't matter how much Luffy and his allies beat them, after a short while they are back to fight them again.
- Lightning Bruiser: They're all incredibly fast and strong and, if that isn't enough, they recover quickly and after a short while they can fight again.
- Psychopathic Manchild: Their intelligence has apparently been affected by their powers and regressed to a point between animalistic and merely infantile, although they're smart enough to clearly understand Sadi's orders. They're still one of the biggest threats in the entire prison, and even enjoy their job in their own way.
- Theme Naming: Their names are their animal Devil Fruit with the prefix "Mino": Minotaurus, Minokoala, Minorhinoceros, Minozebra, and Minochihuahua.
- Top-Heavy Guy: Save for Minochihuahua, who's fairly proportioned, the others have a large upper body whith short and tiny legs.
- Wardens Are Evil: They are all violent and often torture the prisoners. Of course, said prisoners are mostly people who deserve it.
Voiced by: Kappei Yamaguchi (JP), Josh Martin (EN)
Debut: Chapter 525 (Manga), Episode 422 (Anime)
- A Load of Bull: He is literally a bull-man, although he looks more like a spotted cow.
- Bullying a Dragon: He beats a chained Jimbei without fear. When the latter is freed, he repays the favour.
- Carry a Big Stick: His weapon is a large club with sharp spikes.
Voiced by: Hiromu Miyazaki (JP)
Debut: Chapter 532 (Manga), Episode 433 (Anime)
- Carry a Big Stick: He punishes the prisoners with two spiked maces.
- Dual Wielding: He fights with two maces.
- Rhino Rampage: As his name attests, his Devil Fruit gives him the ability to become an half-rhino man.
Voiced by: Takahiro Fujimoto (JP)
Debut: Chapter 533 (Manga), Episode 434 (Anime)
- Carrya Big Stick: His weapon is a rod with a mace head at the end.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: His mane is pink.
- Shrinking Violet: He's quite shy, as he's seen hiding behind Minokoala
Voiced by: Keiji Hirai (JP)
Debut: Chapter 531 (Manga), Episode 432 (Anime)
- Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: His fur is yellow and his nose is red.
- Big Eater: He's almost always seen with some eucalyptus leaves in his mouth.
- Power Fist: His weapon is a pair of spiked brass knuckles.
- Stock Animal Diet: Despite not being an actual koala and simply having the power to turn into one, he likes eucalyptus leaves and carries a bag of them around his waist.
Debut: Chapter 662 (Manga)
- Angry Guard Dog: If he's as bloodthirsty as the other Jailer Beasts, considering he's a literal guard, he's an almost literal example of the trope.
- Grievous Harm with a Body: Apparently, his weapon of choice is a hanged skeleton, noose and all.
- Sixth Ranger: He joins the Jailer Beasts during the timeskip.
Debut: Chapter 526 (Manga), Episode 423 (Anime)
The Blue Gorillas, nicknamed Blugori, are animals so strong that they hunt Sea Kings for food. They mainly reside on Level 1, where they chase the prisoners, but can move to the other levels as well, though they aren't much of a threat to higher-ranked prisoners. They are under Saldeath's command, who controls them using a flute.
- Amazing Technicolor Wildlife: Guess what their fur color is?
- An Axe to Grind: Their weapon of choice is a giant double-headed axe.
- Elite Mook: Downplayed. They are much stronger than the common guards, and are tough enough to take care of the Level 1 prisoners, but when put against Luffy or some stronger prisoner, they're ineffective.
- The Faceless: Their cloaks cover the upper sides of their bodies. How they can see while wearing them is a mistery.
- Informed Species: Their faces are hidden by their cloaks and the rest of their bodies don't exactly resemble a gorilla.
- Killer Gorilla: They're gorillas so strong they hunt Sea Kings and are vicious prison guards.
Level 2 Beasts
Level 2, known as "Wild Beast Hell", is filled with dangerous monsters that will chase and eat every prisoner they encounter. The monsters in question are:
- The Sphinx: A large lion-like creature with a human face and feathers. It's the strongest monster of the level, and is tough enough to destroy the floor under him.
- The Basilisk: A big chicken with a reptilian face and a constantly hungry expression.
- The Manticores: Lions with human faces. Ferocious creatures who devour even the prey's bones. They can even speak human language, but not understand it. They therefore simply repeat random words they hear from the prisoners.
- The Puzzle Scorpions: Giant poisonous scorpions which can combine themselves to become a giant centipede.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The Basilisk and the Sphinx are quite huge.
- Basilisk and Cockatrice: The second strongest monster is a large basilisk (that, ironically, is a giant chicken monster that looks more like a cockatrice). However, he doesn't have the petrifying gaze.
- Beware the Silly Ones: No one of them looks remotely scary (save the Basilisk, and even then he looks more crazy than intimidating), yet they are all strong monsters.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: The puzzle scorpions. While they don't look scary, they're actually quite big and dangerous, and, if combined, they become an even larger centipede.
- Conservation of Ninjutsu: There are many manticores and puzzle scorpions, but are all small fries for Luffy. The basilisk and the sphinx, on the other hand, are quite tougher opponents, and there is only one of each of them.
- Gonk: Each manticore has a different human face, but every single one is... goofy.
- King Mook: The Sphinx is the leader of Level 2 monsters and is the strongest among them.
- Mix-and-Match Critters: The manticores are basically lions with a human face, the Sphinx is similar to a giant winged manticore and the Basilisk can be described as a chicken with a reptile face.
- Mooks: At least for Luffy, the manticores are easy to deal with. Not so much for Buggy and the Level 1 and 2 prisoners.
- Our Manticores Are Spinier: These are human-headed lions that are led by a sphinx.
- Our Sphinxes Are Different: The Sphinx is the King Mook of the Manticores of the Level 2: Beast Hell of Impel Down. It has a goofy-looking, almost apelike face, a giant lion body (as big as a house), and feathers along its forelimbs and shoulders.
- Running Gag: Involving the Manticores's habit of yelling names of underwears and the Sphinx's habit of shouting casual names of
noodlespasta since they can learn the words they hear from the prisoners but don't understand their meanings.
- Scary Scorpions: The puzzle scorpions. Despite their appearance, they're actually deadly poisonous and can combine themselves together to become a giant centipede.
- Super-Persistent Predator: The basilisk keeps chasing Luffy and Buggy for a long while until he's stopped by Luffy's gear third punch.
The Wolf Unit
Debut: Chapter 536 (Manga), Episode 425 (Anime)
A pack of vicious wolves that reside in Level 5. It used to be in Level 2 but, since the wolves are so voracious that they used to prey on the other beasts too, it has been moved.
- Ax-Crazy: As if their constant maniac expression isn't enough, these are voracious predators that would hunt anything.
- Informed Ability: They are said to be so dangerous that if they were in Level 2, they would promptly eat the other beasts, including the Sphinx. However, both Luffy and Bon-Clay defeat plenty of them with much more ease than the Sphinx.
- Maniac Tongue: Just to show how deranged they are, their tongues are constantly sticking out.
- Savage Wolves: So savages that not even manticores are safe from these guys.
- Asshole Victim: They suffer many kinds of torture in prison, which become progressively worse for every level, and all of them lead to an unpleasant death. However, if they are in prison it means they must have committed serious crimes.
- Break the Haughty: Many have had their spirits broken by the terrible tortures they've been forced to endure, and used to be criminals in the past.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: It doesn't matter on which level the prisoner goes, they will suffer a terrible death, be it by blood loss, being Eaten Alive by monsters, starved in a desert, boiled alive, frozen or by pure boredom.
- Literally Shattered Lives: The prisoners in Level 5 suffer a slow and painful version of this. The temperature is so low, they suffer from frostbite and their bodies slowly fall apart.
- Stewed Alive: Prisoners in Level 4 are forced to carry giant logs to keep the flames of the boiling blood pool going, but some end up falling in said boiling blood.
The followers of Emporio Ivankov, they were once prisoners of the Great Gaol of Impel Down that were "spirited away", while actually they were just freed by Ivankov or had found a way to reach him. They resides in the hidden Level 5.5, built by a prisoner with tunneling Devil Fruit powers where they constantly party and keep an eye on the situation in the prison. After Luffy's outburst, they evade with their leader. After the Marineford saga, they finally reach Kamabakka Kingdom, where they joined the local Okama subjects.
For Emporio Ivankov himself and Inazuma see their entries on the Revolutionary Army page. For Caroline see his entry on the Anime-Only page.
- Attractive Bent-Gender: Apparently, when a male Newkama is turned in a female he instantly becomes a hottie, it's more glaring when nearly all the males are quite gonky.
- Badass Crew: They're all martial arts masters in Okama Kenpo and Newkama Kenpo, you better believe they're badass.
- Beware the Nice Ones: Think a bunch of gender-switching, easy-going, partying guys is harmless? Think again. The same goes for the inhabitants of Momoiro.
- Chef of Iron: All the high-level masters of Okama and Newkama Kenpo can use the "Attack Cuisine", which can strengthen the human body from inside. Sanji is the only person who managed to master it without becoming an Okama.
- Distaff Counterpart: The Newkama are a sort of counterpart to the Kuja Pirates.
- Fan Disservice: While at least the Newkama in Impel Down can be quite pleasant, the crossdressers of Kamabakka are straight awful.
- Gender Bender: Basically any single member may have or not change sex at least once, courtesy of Ivankov's Horm-Horm powers. The Newkama philosophy is that a person should be whatever makes them happiest, whether it's a man, woman, or okama.
- Gonk: Many of the male Newkama are plain ugly. Ditto for "Caroline" and all the other Okama on Kamabakka Kingdom.
- Humiliation Conga: One of the members: he was once a prince whose father was turned into a Okama after visiting Ivankov's Kingdom, then he lost everything, became a pirate and was imprisoned. To cup it all, when he tried to take revenge on Iva he had his own bullet reflected back at him and then was turned into a woman.
- I Choose to Stay: A large portion of the Newkama decided to stay in Level 5.5, rather than breaking out. Bon-chan ends up becoming their new "queen".
- Real Men Wear Pink: And dresses, skirts and bloomers too. Momoiro literally means "Pink".
- Refuge in Audacity: Pretty much everything they do are made crazy and over-the-top as much as possible.
- Seashell Bra: One of the male Newkama sports one.
- Screams Like a Little Girl: Justified as the poor sop was just turned into a naked chick in front of a whole room of people. Also the Okama tends to have "girlish-sounding" voices.
- Stocking Filler: All the Newkama wear these.
- Training from Hell: The "Bride Training" required for the Attack Cuisine. Sanji managed to skip it in exchange for another, harder training.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: Averted by the Impel Down denizens. The people of Kamabakka may look more like Creepy Crossdresser type, but they're actually of a really good nature.
- Zerg Rush: While escaping from Impel Down.