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"Pirate Hunter" Roronoa Zoro

Child Voice: Megumi Urawa (JP); Brina Palencia (EN, Funi), Andrew Rannells (EN, 4Kids); Rocío Azofra (SP)
Adult Voice: Kazuya Nakai (JP), Wataru Takagi (OVA); Christopher Sabat (EN, Funi), Marc Diraison (EN, 4Kids); Gabriel Basurto, Dafnis Fernández (2nd Voice, Anime and OP Gold) (Latin American Spanish); Jorge Saudinós (SP)

Age: 19 (Pre-Timeskip), 21 (Post-Timeskip)

Birthday: November 11th

Bounty: 320,000,000 Berries

Debut: Chapter 3 (Manga), Episode 1 (Anime)

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/roronoa_zoro_anime.png
Click here to see his Pre-Time Skip appearance 

"I am going to be the world's greatest swordsman! (...) Whether a hero or a villain, everyone's going to know my name!"

Roronoa Zoro is the nineteen/twenty-one-year-old swordsman of the Straw Hat Pirates. Recruited as a mildly notorious bounty hunter in East Blue (hence his "Pirate Hunter" moniker), he grows into a monstruously powerful man who doesn't even need a Devil Fruit ability, using a unique Santoryu sword style (literally "Three Sword Style") in battle, wielding a sword in each hand along with one in the mouth. After the time skip, he manages to master the Haki as well. Zoro mostly drinks and sleeps in his spare time (when he's not training his ass off), but becomes a real demon in battle that can defeat five hundred Mooks in two seconds. Often wears a green bandanna on his forearm that he ties around his head when he gets dangerous. Moreover, he is Luffy's Number Two, sometimes acting as a voice of authority when the crew's future must be decided, and regularly happens to battle The Dragon of the current Big Bad the crew are fighting, which is an occasion to hone his swordsmanship.

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Similar to Luffy's goal, Zoro wishes to become the greatest swordsman in the world as a promise to his childhood rival Kuina, whom he wanted to win against but never could because she died in an accident. Unlike Luffy, however, he needs only to defeat Dracule "Hawk Eyes" Mihawk, the current greatest swordsman in the world, to do so. He actually meets up with Mihawk fairly early in the story, but failed to land a single hit and was sliced by Mihawk's BFS for his trouble. Mihawk, however, held back just enough to leave Zoro alive, and told him to challenge him again when he was ready. In a strange twist of events, he is trained by Mihawk to be a stronger swordsman to protect his crew. For giving up his pride for the sake of others impresses Mihawk enough to agree.

Mainly because of his strength and for going alongside Luffy's battles, Zoro is counted as a member of "The Worst Generation" like his captain.

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He has a bounty of 320,000,000 berries.note 


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    #-F 
  • 108: His Pound Hou techniques have this motif. It starts with him doing 36 Pound Hou with one sword in the Skypiea Arc, then later using 108 Pound Hou with 3 swords to defeat Ohm in the same arc. After the Time Skip, he upgrades his moves into 360 Pound Hou with one sword, and predictably, 1080 Pound Hou with three.
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Does this two times.
    • First, he begs Kuma to take his head instead of Luffy's when he defeated the Straw Hat Crew in Thriller Bark.
    • After defeating the Humandrills when he was separated from his crew, he begs Mihawk to teach him to get stronger for his crew's sake.
  • The Alcoholic: If he's not fighting, he's either training, sleeping, or drinking. When training under Mihawk, he was horrified when his teacher told him he couldn't have a drop of alcohol to drink until he managed to infuse his sword with so much Armament Haki it turned the blade completely black.
  • Always Someone Better: A Running Gag shared between him and Sanji - whatever Sanji does, Zoro does better. It even factors in otherwise trivial things such as their Badass Baritone voices (with Zoro sounding the deepest of the two). It constantly pisses the hell out of Sanji.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Zoro has had a rich brown skin tone his entire life, so unlike Robin, who was just tan, his actual pigmentation is a little less than the lily-white Nami/Sanji have. Though considering he also has green hair and Oda states his real life nationality would be Japan, who knows what he's supposed to be? (Of course, there are some naturally tan Japanese, especially in the more Southern islands.)
  • Anti-Hero: Zoro can be particularly murderous, as he's a Blood Knight. He is even described by other pirates as being capable of exuding a massive killing intent. Zoro has also stated several times of his willingness to kill, and said he's not a friend to pirates or marines.
  • The Anti-Nihilist: While Zoro would be the last person to talk about the inherent beauty of the world, he's still deeply invested in protecting his crew and honoring the memory of his friend. He's just as much a romantic as the rest of his crew, he just doesn't happen to go on about as much. This also overlaps with some Buddhist ideology. He also started as a guy who didn't care about anything but his own strength.
  • Artifact Alias: The epithet "Pirate Hunter" comes from hunting pirates for a living before the start of the series. Now that he's a pirate himself, this would be quite difficult to do without getting arrested himself.
  • Asexual: Zoro is the only male member of the crew not to peek in the girls' bathroom during the Alabasta arc, and who shows a general lack of interest in the opposite sex. He's even proven immune to Nami and Robin's feminine wiles. This is probably a case of "thinks love is a distraction", since he seems to focus almost completely on his fighting ability. May also have something to do with his first female friend, Kuina, dying on him when they were children.
  • Ax-Crazy: The gag comic "Mugiwara Theatre - Detective Loomes" depicts him as a bloodthirsty samurai who likes slicing pedestrians with his swords, cranking his Blood Knight tendencies Up to Eleven and removing his sense of honor.
  • Badass Arm-Fold: In this pic, which completely cements his Made of Iron credentials.
  • Badass Baritone: He has the deepest voice in the crew (both Japanese and English dub), and is undeniably badass.
  • Badass Boast:
    • He also made a spectacularly badass one as a child which doubles as The Promise when reacting to Kuina's death:
      Zoro: I'll become the world's greatest swordsman, I'll become so famous, my name will heard out even in Heaven!"
    • From chapter 642:
      Zoro: You want to kill me?! You couldn't even kill my boredom!
    • After Luffy knocks out 50,000 of Hody's subordinates:
      Zoro: If he wasn't at least this strong, I'd be captain.
    • After unveiling his improved Tatsumaki in the Fish-Man Island arc:
      New Fish-Man Pirate: How long will it keep chasing us!?
      Zoro: To the ends of hell.
    • Made one in Chapter 754 in his fight against Pica:
      Zoro: I'm the man who will one day be this world's greatest swordsman! You were never in my league to begin with!
    • He makes another one against Pica, which doubles as a Pre-Mortem One-Liner.
      Zoro: Over the 9 mountains and across the 8 seas...there is nothing I cannot cut!
  • Badass Longcoat: After the two-year timeskip.
  • Badass Normal: He's the second-strongest member of the crew, on par with Luffy, and yet he doesn't have any Devil Fruit powers; his power comes from sheer skill and training. In fact, he can take on and defeat Devil Fruit users.
  • Badasses Wear Bandanas: He gets especially badass whenever he dons his black bandana.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Out of all the crew, it's Chopper he seems to have a huge soft spot for. So don't try to hurt Chopper. It'll make the big guy decide to go back on his policy not to fight for revenge.
  • Big Brother Mentor: To a degree, towards Luffy. Also toward Chopper.
  • Big Damn Heroes: He often jumps out of nowhere to save someone at unexpected moments.
    • He saves Vivi from being blown up by Mr.5 on Whiskey Peak.
    • He shields Nami from Mr.1's attack in Alubana.
    • At the end of the Thriller Bark arc, he stops Kuma from taking the entire crew, in particular Luffy,
    • Post-Time Skip, stops King Neptune's Trident when Neptune .
    • He stops Hyouzou from attacking Robin. However, considering Robin's lack of concern prior to his intervention and Zoro's offhanded apology over it, the two probably see this particular example more as Zoro stealing Robin's kill than this trope.
  • Black Swords Are Better:
    • Zoro's strongest sword Shusui has a black blade.
    • When he makes his swords black with the strength of his Haki, they become harder, more durable, and sharper; they're able to slice a massive skyscraper-sized stone statue in half effortlessly and with not a chip on their blades afterward.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: His fights compared to the others as well as his own.
  • Blood Knight: Mostly apathetic to everything around him, but once you say you want to fight, voila! You got his interest!
  • Born Lucky: Downplayed, but he earned Kitetsu III by tossing it with a heavy spin above his outstretched arm and challenging its curse with his own luck. Instead of decapitating him, the blade circles perfectly around his arm and sinks to its hilt in the floor.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: In episode 223 of the anime.
  • Brutal Honesty: Don't expect Zoro to be anything other than blunt in anything he says. Notably his commentary on Sanji's attempts to woo attractive women, his opinion on Tashigi's fighting ability (in comparison to his), or the situation with Usopp with his initial departure of the crew.
  • Challenge Seeker: Wanting to be the world's greatest swordsman, he duels everyone holding a sword to prove that he's the best and improve himself.
  • Character Tics: When Zoro has the intention to fight seriously, he ties his bandana (normally kept tied around his left arm) around his head.
  • Characterization Marches On: Invoked; Zoro used to smile, laugh, and play along with the crew a lot more before the Baratie Arc. After being defeated so easily by Mihawk, he became much more serious, sullen, and hotheaded in the following arcs; over time, the "sullen" part declined but his predominant personality remains stern. He still has his Cloud Cuckoo Lander tendencies though, see below.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: He is extremely strong, owing to rigorous training. He can actually lift a house above his head and throw it, for starters.
  • Child Prodigy: Zoro was already an extremely talented swordsman as a child, being able to defeat every adult in his dojo at around 8-10 years old. Ironically though, the one person he could not beat was another young prodigy, Kuina.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: You wouldn't guess it from his usual demeanor, but Zoro just has some moments of total daffiness, and is completely serious during all of them. When he's being turned into a wax statue, he raises his sword into the air and advises everyone to strike a pose. He yells like Tarzan while swinging on a vine. When Nami has trouble swinging, he claims it's because she "didn't do the call".
  • The Coats Are Off: Zoro removes the top part of his coat when he got serious in the battle on Fish-Man Island.
  • Color Motif: Always seen wearing green, and even has green hair. It represents naivety - while he was already an accomplished swordsman, compared to someone like Mihawk, he's an absolute greenhorn.
  • Combat Sadomasochist: The dude tears himself apart on a regular basis, and seems to enjoy it. In total, he's allowed himself:
    • A big scar across his chest from losing to Mihawk that was so bad Arlong wondered why it didn't kill him outright.
    • To risk the loss of an entire arm to test the curse of a sword.
    • Ankle scars from attempting to chop off his feet.
    • To go out in the freezing cold shirtless and unshod (until hawking suitable garb from a Mook).
    • To take two massive jolts of electricity.
    • Kuma's devastating test of pain which leaves him near death and eyes completely bloodshot from squinting so hard in agony.
    • And some mysterious scar that prevents the use of his left eye.
  • The Comically Serious: He's very serious and doesn't have much of a sense of humor, but he can be hilarious nonetheless, partially thanks to his crew.
  • The Consigliere: Occasionally, despite the Straw Hats not being a mafia. Though he respects Luffy's decisions most of the time, he has an innate sense of the burdens of captainship and he will step in and give some harsh, albeit necessary, wisdom whenever he feels Luffy is making a mistake.
  • Covered in Scars: He has no scars at the beginning of the series, but a duel with Mihawk leads to his first and more recognizable one: a large scar across his entire chest. He inflicts some more on himself when Mr. 3 encases his feet in wax and he tries to cut himself free, and in the two years he trained with Mihawk personally, something happened to his left eye, leaving it permanently closed and with a scar over it.
  • Creepy Crossdresser: In "Mugiwara Theatre-Märchen Time" he plays the part of a princess and when Usopp, who's playing a fairy godmother, gives him a beautiful dress he calls him "creepy". Robin even says that "the princess" is "unlovable".
  • Creepy Good: Zoro is one of only two members of the Straw Hats known to have killed in the past. Zoro is willing to chop his own feet off to join a fight and creeps the others out with his sheer determination and willpower, not to mention his monstrous strength. Usopp, Nami, and Chopper frequently find him "creepy" or "nuts" depending on the situation.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Was subjected to one by Mihawk the first time they met, after challenging him to a sword fight. He was trounced so badly that he broke down crying, and swore to improve himself so he can finally defeat Mihawk. On the flip side, he constantly hands out this trope to his enemies like Smoker smokes cigars - it's even more prominent after the Time Skip, where his fights end with even less effort on his part than before thanks to a two-year Training from Hell.
  • Cuteness Proximity: Altough it's subtle, due to him being The Stoic, he has soft spot for the young and cute Chopper.
  • Cutlass Between the Teeth: His three-swords fighting style relies on it, as he holds the third sword in his mouth, and is as improbable as it looks.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: While his childhood is mostly unknown, Zoro did lose a good friend and rival, Kuina, before they could both achieve their dreams of becoming great swordsman. He also had no parents or extended family to speak of.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Zoro has a really dry wit, and has thrown out some pretty badass Pre Asskicking One Liners.
  • Death Glare: He's damn good at giving these, and it gets even more terrifying once he puts on his bandanna.
  • Defeating the Undefeatable: Zoro's ultimate goal is to defeat Mihawk, who is the world's undefeatable swordsman.
  • Delinquent Hair: The gag comic "Mugiwara Theatre - Red-Hair of Class 3-Sea Time" gives him a mohawk, which is a reference to Tora Gari, one of his frequently-used sword techniques and a Pun for a type of mohawk. He's also depicted as a "deadly weapon" delinquent who often carries his swords around in school.
  • Determinator: His fight against Mr. 1 comes to mind. You must see the amount of punishment Zoro endured during that fight to believe it.
  • Diagonal Cut: Most notably, how he finished off Mr. 1.
  • Dodge the Bullet: He can dodge bullets quite easily, even if they're fired from point-blank range.
  • Does Not Like Spam: According to Oda, he hates chocolate because it's too sweet for him. Good thing he got Put on a Bus for the Totto Land Arc...
  • Dragon-in-Chief: In the beginning of the series, people thought Zoro was the guy who's really in charge. Zoro's past as an infamous pirate hunter meant his reputation eclipsed Luffy's and many people considered him more dangerous than his captain and often wondered why he isn't the official captain, at least until they actually see Luffy's strength in action. Post-Alabasta, Luffy's strength gets recognised in its own right and the trope gets averted, with people wondering what kind of person Luffy is like to get someone like Zoro to be under his command.
  • The Dreaded: He's pretty scary in general and the second-strongest in the crew, but this was especially the case when the crew was just starting out in East Blue. As mentioned above, he was the only one of them with already-established notoriety and had previously received an invitation to join Baroque Works. A crowd of Buggy Pirates threatening him, Luffy, and Nami jumped in the ocean and swam for their lives after realizing who he was.
  • Dual Wielding: Zoro often triple-wields katanas, with one in each hand and one in his mouth. It's always quite effective, as absurd as it would be in real life. It goes even farther, however, with Zoro eventually learning to nonuple-wield — that is, use nine swords at once, or at least create the appearance of this.
  • Dub Name Change: In the 4Kids English dubbed version, his name was changed from "Zoro" to "Zolo".
  • Dumb Muscle: Downplayed. Zoro has shown decent judgement and wisdom. However, aside from Luffy, he's the only crew member to not have an additional skill outside of combat, has absolutely No Sense of Direction, is at times borderline Cloud Cuckoolander, and was the last person to get Luffy's 3D2Y message.
  • Embarrassing Rescue: Tashigi finds his help really embarrassing.
  • Empowered Badass Normal: He tapped into his potential for Haki during the timeskip.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Zoro is pretty merciless, and not above killing or injuring the Mooks he encounters. However, even he is visibly disgusted by Crocodile's willingness to murder an entire country of innocents for personal gain, angrily snarling The term "not-human" was created to describe scum such as you.
  • Everything's Better with Samurai: Although not an actual samurai from Wano, Zoro is reminiscent of one. He is a Master Swordsman who wields katanas and follows the samurai philosophy of Bushido, which stresses honor and loyalty. He fights fair, refusing to attack enemies whose backs are turned unless his friends are in danger of dying. He is also very loyal, standing by Luffy and respecting his decisions. He's nicknamed "Mr. Bushido" by Vivi and even poses as a ronin in Wano.
  • Evil Weapon: Kitetsu III's curse has led all its previous owners to violent deaths. Zoro sees it as a problem child, but he is too sword-crazy to back away from the challenge - and his mojo proves stronger than its curse as shown as he tested it on himself.
  • Eyepatch After Timeskip: Subverted. He hasn't been shown to use an eyepatch (so far), but he did come out of the time-skip missing an eye. This has yet to be explained.
  • Face of a Thug: Despite being a generally good guy and a Friend to All Children, Zoro is often accused of having a scary face (and his Slasher Smile is enough to freak out even the viewers).
  • Fan Disservice: Zoro with his shirt all torn up is pure Fanservice. But Zoro with his shirt torn while soaked in his own blood and so hurt he could barely stand after his confrontation with Kuma wasn't so much.
  • Fantastic Fighting Style: His Three-Sword Style, which involves a sword in each and and one sword in his mouth. By One Piece standards, this is one of the more realistic fighting styles.
  • Fighting Spirit: This is how his Asura technique works.
  • Flaming Sword: Yaki Oni Giri (Flaming Demon Slash). Used once with actual fire, and in one of the movies with magic fire. He also stated that he would love a flaming sword as a weapon.
  • Flanderization: Relatively minor case. What started out as having a bad sense of direction eventually becomes being so directionally incompetent that in the G8 arc he even manages to bend time and space through the power of getting lost in a straight hallway with no exit; fortunately that was only in anime. So either he improved it a bit or getting a lot worse by getting lost and seperate from the other crew while they all ride the same lion-dog.
  • Foil: As The Lancer, he's a neat contrast to Luffy in many ways; a former bounty hunter with an outwardly stern and menacing disposition who actually resembles the traditional pirate far more than Luffy does due to Luffy's own cheerful demeanor.
  • Friend to All Children: He has a soft spot for kids; this is actually the first indication that he's not the bloodthirsty monster people think he is.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Sort of. An octopus was seen stuck on him when he came back up from inspecting a shipwreck. Later, a South Bird was staying near him (though it was to get his food). Chopper, a half-reindeer, usually clamps on his head when he's scared.
  • Full-Name Basis: Villains only ever call him by his full name, and some add in his epithet "Pirate Hunter" as a prefix for good measure. He shares this distinction with Robin. Interestingly, Mihawk and Tashigi seem to be the only people in the world on Last-Name Basis with him, frequently calling him just "Roronoa".
  • Full Potential Upgrade: Yubashiri and Kitetsu III were this, as a filler episode's flashback showed Zoro having a tendency to break his second and third swords until he got them.
  • Fun with Homophones: All of his attack names read menacingly... but sound like the names of food. For example, his basic attack "oni giri" means "demon slash"... but sounds like onigiri ("rice-ball").

    G-L 
  • Goggles Do Nothing: He did attempt to use them once, in order to shield his eyes from an enemy's flash attacks. This did little good, given that the goggles aren't tinted.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars:
    • Zoro possesses a huge scar across his chest from his first bout with Mihawk (which he tried to poorly patch up by himself at first).
    • Later on, he gains scars on his ankles from his attempt to cut his feet off to escape a villain's trap.
    • After the timeskip, Zoro has lost an eye and has a thin scar from his forehead to his cheek.
  • Grumpy Old Man: The gag comic "Mugiwara Theatre - Family Time" turned him into one of these, with his sternness and dedication to swordsmanship cranked Up to Eleven, and a balding head. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Handicapped Badass: Zoro apparently critically injured or even lost his left eye after the Timeskip, as there's a new scar over it and it's always closed. Either way, it hasn't slowed him down in the slightest.
  • Heavy Sleeper: This guy can sleep anywhere at any time, even sleeping through a storm like it was smooth sailing. Or during a snow storm, he doesn't even wake up after being thoroughly covered in snow; he's even wearing short sleeves.
  • Heroic Ambidexterity: Though evidence points to Zoro being left-handed (his swords are on his right), he's clearly just as capable with a sword using his right hand.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Although Zoro is the most anti-heroic of the crew. Zoro is an extremely powerful master swordsman, being able to use one, two, and three swords in varying attack styles, going from melee-type all the way to artillery. He is even able to use some sword techniques that utilize the very air itself to strike the enemy from a distance. Brook classifies Zoro as a user of the "Power of Destruction" (破壊力 Hakairyoku?).
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Offers his life in exchange for Luffy's before a nigh unbeatable foe. Instead, said foe allows him to take in all of Luffy's pain and exhaustion, which was supposed to be a traumatic enough experience to kill him. Naturally, it doesn't. And this is all the pain and exhaustion from someone made of rubber who was able to endure it thanks to his Devil Fruit powers, forced into a (technically) normal human body.
  • High-Pressure Blood: Has an infinite supply of it.
  • Hollywood Healing: "Band-aids heal everything." It doesn't matter how much damage he takes, a few bandages and he's ok.
  • Hot-Blooded: While he's ususally calm and stoic, he can become excited in the midst of an entertaining fight.
  • How Dare You Die on Me!: Implied to be a source of angst involving the best friend, Kuina, whose childhood death he never got over. It's especially heart-wrenching when you consider that the other Straw Hats were at least assured they were unconditionally cared about by their own loved ones, no matter how tragic the circumstances. Zoro has always been alone since the beginning.
  • Hunk: He is on the lean side and isn't as muscular as Ace, but the most muscular of the Straw Hats and is quite good-looking. He gets even more hunkier after the timeskip.
  • Iaijutsu Practitioner: Has two of these that he uses in dire situations, one with a single sword and another with two. A three-sword version would probably be impossible, but this is One Piece...
  • I Gave My Word: Takes his promises to others seriously, and is determined to keep them, to the point that he seems to really dislike being accused of not being able to fulfill a promise.
  • Iconic Outfit: His original white T and black pants pre-timeskip, as well as his first Time Skip outfit which is the green robe. Also, he's never seen without his green "belly warmer" and 3 earrings.
  • If I Wanted You Dead...: A rare non-villain example. When he fights Monet, she knows he can use Haki and in one attack vertically cuts her in half but holds back on the Haki to not kill her. She knows she should be dead and this near-death experience brought on a fear that is enough to keep her from properly reforming.
  • Implausible Fencing Powers: Who else can sword-swing with their mouth? Or wield three swords at the same time?
  • Improbable Age: One of the biggest badasses in the series is 21?
  • Instant Armor: Learned to use the Armament Haki during the timeskip, and he imbues the power in his sword like many New World swordsmen. Oda said that Zoro specializes in this type of Haki, and it shows; he can launch a black tornado of Razor Wind that keeps on spinning and cutting up everything in its path with it.
  • Irony: His prior occupation was a pirate hunter and now he is one.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: While not a complete Jerkass, tends to be one of the more abrasive members of the crew when giving advice. However, his advice tends to be right.
    • During the Davy Back Fight, he tells Chopper to own up to his decision to join the Straw Hats and that he shouldn't be blaming others for it.
    • When Usopp wanted to rejoin the crew, he tells Luffy that unless Usopp apologizes first, he'd simply be allowing a crew member to disrespect him.
    • He acts rather apathetic about Sanji leaving the crew for his Arranged Marriage with one of Big Mom's daughters, pointing out that they can't be sticking their noses in one Emperor's business when they're currently focused on another.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's normally grumpy and rude, but if any of his crew get in trouble he's the first to help them, while growling about how stupid/thoughtless they were for getting into the mess in the first place.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Why do you think he carries three at a time?
  • Ki Attacks: As revealed by Luffy, he can now use Haki after the time-skip. Oda says that he specializes in Armament Haki, which is shown when he used it to cut Monet's cheek, at long range. It's also implied he can use Observation Haki.
  • Killing Intent: This is implied to be behind his Kyuutouryu: Ashura ability (where he sprouts extra heads, arms and swords). This also allows him to beat Monet, a logia user, to the point she was frozen in fear and couldn't reassemble herself after he cut her without Haki.
  • The Lancer: To Luffy. While his captain has a goofy and happy-go-lucky personality who has a more freestyle form of fighting, primarily using his fists and feet, and has always wanted about being a pirate since youth, Zoro is serious and stern, trained in three-sword-style and only uses a sword in combat, and was originally a pirate hunter for money.
  • Leitmotif: Zoro Eyecatcher.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: When he puts the bandana on, Zoro will usually use some crazy attack that destroys his opponent, and usually the environment around them. Lampshaded during Enies Lobby where Kaku asks him if the bandanna increases his power.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: An interesting case where the villains barely had to do anything to provoke Luffy into fighting Zoro at Whiskey Peak. They had all been beaten up by Zoro and Luffy was mistakenly led to believe that Zoro did this for the fun of it, when the villains were "nice" to him and the crew beforehand, giving them food and partying with them, all the while waiting for the chance to kill them all.
  • Licking the Blade: He does this a couple of times. Not surprisingly, there was much squeeing from the female fanbase.
  • Lighter and Softer: His fights post-timeskip. Thus far he's barely been touched, much less injured.
  • Lightning Bruiser: His physical strength is equal to Luffy's, and he can react fast enough to dodge bullets fired at point-blank range. Post time skip: He's faster than a Fish-Man, while underwater.

    M-R 
  • Made of Iron: To a mind-blowing extent. Zoro is the trope image for a reason. He refuses to be incapacitated even after Mr. 1 practically puts him through a meatgrinder. This is most noticeable in the anime, which often downplays how badly Luffy and others are hurt in their fights – it is kinda hard to do with Zoro, as he almost always fights swordsmen. To put it in perspective, when a Fish-Man Supremacist like Arlong sees the extent of Zoro's wounds prior to the battle, and how well he'd fought, he decides he cannot let a human like this live.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: He absorbed all the pain Luffy acquired in Thriller Bark to prevent Kuma from taking him, which results in him standing in a pool of his own blood. In his own words, it was "nothing at all".
  • Mangst: He still carries Wado Ichimonji everywhere.
  • Martial Pacifist: While never one to even "try" to avoid a fight, Zoro rarely, if ever, starts one, despite his rather Blood Knight like nature. After the time skip Zoro even starts to refuse to fight people he deems weaker than himself, and those he does fight he tries to make give up by destroying their weapons or intimidating the hell out of them. That said if his opponent still comes at him or the other Straw Hats and allies he will take them out.
  • Master Swordsman: Zoro's ultimate goal. He was also trained by the Master Swordsman of the setting – Dracule "Hawk Eye" Mihawk.
  • Multi Wielding: He often triple-wields katanas, with one in each hand and one in his mouth. This being anime, of course, it's always quite effective, as absurd as it would be in real life. It goes even farther, however, with Zoro eventually learning to nonuple-wield – that is, use nine swords at once, or at least create the appearance of this. Justified, since Zoro's style isn't nearly as effective unless he uses three swords.
  • Mysterious Past: While we know he spent his teenage years training and hunting pirates after the Kuina incident, nothing about Zoro's family life, early childhood, or even where exactly he was born is known. All we know for certain is that he showed up at a dojo in the East Blue one day around 9-12 years old or so (his age in his flashback was never specified) and was already strong enough to defeat every adult there. Furthermore, whatever motivated Zoro to become a swordsman in the first place is completely unknown.
  • Mythology Gag: When first hearing about three-sword style, Ryuma questions if it's a circus act. In the early development, Zoro was made as a member of Buggy's Circus of Fear crew.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Qualifies in most areas, most notably that he looks great with his shirt off, which happens more often than not.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: His surname is based on that of real-life pirate François l'Olonnais, notable among other things for cutting out an enemy's heart and biting into it in front of him mid-fight.
  • Nerves of Steel: Reacts pretty calmly to situations. Justified as Zoro's belief in fate leads him to leave things to luck.
  • Never Gets Drunk: One of the greatest examples. Zoro can hold ridiculous amounts of alcohol.
    • Even after out-drinking thirteen people, Zoro went on to fight one hundred trained assassins at Whiskey Peak with no problems whatsoever. He didn't even have a hangover next morning. However, part of the reason why he never gets drunk is because he knows his limits. As he himself says:
      Zoro: A true swordsman never drinks himself into a stupor.
    • Chapter 669: Sanji (in Nami's body), and Brook all get hit by a sleeping gas that is somehow supposed to use alcohol to knock out even the heaviest of drinkers. Zoro does end up falling asleep from the fumes, but it also takes him longer than Sanji or Brook to succumb; long enough that he can slice a needle-laden mountaintop that they're headed toward in half so that they don't all die or get horribly injured.
  • Never My Fault: Every time he's left to his own devices, he ends up running in circles believing it's his crew who's lost, not him.
    Zoro: "Damn, the others are lost again..." (while they were all riding the same lion-dog)
  • No Badass to His Valet: To the world, Zoro is a monstrously powerful swordsman with an intense amount of bloodlust and potential, and the First Mate to one of the most dangerous pirates on the Grand Line. To the rest of the Straw Hat crew, he's their meathead of a swordsman who's capable of getting lost in a straight hallway and is only marginally smarter than their reckless idiot of a captain, and it's questionable if they even view him as the First Mate.
  • No Sense of Direction: This man is capable of getting lost in a straight hallway.
    • This man is capable of getting lost when a door was in front of him.
    • This man is capable of getting lost when it shouldn't be physically possible.
    • And when he wants to get away from someone, he'll end up running into them anyway.
    • Even the zombie that had his shadow got lost when following a large group of zombies.
    • On three separate occasions, he's been instructed to go up a massive, un-missable staircase directly in front of him and goes sprinting along adjacent it. In all three cases, he blames the person who told him where to go for not being clear enough.
    • When he's told to go south, he goes the opposite direction. While in the company of a bird whose head will only ever point south. And when he's told to go north, he immediately starts climbing a building, thinking "north" means "up".
    • Surprisingly, the only time he actually didn't get lost is during the Post-Marineford arc, when Mihawk told him he can find a rowboat to the west of his castle, and he actually found it.
    • He seemingly gets over this over the Time Skip, bragging to Sanji that he got back to Saboady first. Subvert it turns out that was only with the help of Perona, with his navigational skills being just as bad as ever.
    • When escaping from a lethal wave of poisonous gas, he stays behind to fight somebody while everyone else runs away. Much later while they're still running, he catches up, running towards them from the opposite direction.
    • In Dressrosa, he manages to completely ignore or misconstrue directions that are being given to him in real time, by someone riding in his coat pocket who can see exactly where they're going.
    • Wano Country: he manages to get lost and separated from his group of Luffy, Law, and Kiku while they're all riding on the back of the same lion-dog, without any battle involved. In short, he managed to get lost while just sitting down.
    • The SBS of volume 85 reveals that if the Straw Hats do a 50-meter race, Zoro would be placed 5th. Zoro would be ranked higher in the shorter distance race since he would not run off the track.
  • No Social Skills: A more minor example than most, but if Zoro isn't issuing badass threats he's actually fairly awkward in social scenarios, usually getting rather frustrated if things get out of his comfort zone. His relationships with Tashigi and Sanji reek of this.
  • Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond: Inverted, as he was a big fish in a tiny pond. At the beginning of the series, Zoro already had a reputation as a top tier swordsman in the East Blue. Most of his battles ended in single stroke and he was more feared than Luffy, who was seen as a nobody at the time. When faced against Mihawk, the greatest swordsman in the world, everyone expects an epic battle. It turns out to be a complete and utter curb stomp with Mihawk deflecting all of Zoro's strikes with a tiny knife.
    Mihawk: You may have a reputation, but you're still just a bunny. [...] You're a little frog, croaking in your puddle. Time you learned how big the world is.
  • Normally, I Would Be Dead Now: He visibly suffers what should be fatal injuries repeatedly over the course of the series, the most standout examples being when he is carved up by Mihawk, effectively put through a meat grinder by Mr.1, or forced to take on all of Luffy's pain by Kuma. But, no matter how grave his injuries, he always lives through them with sheer willpower. This is Lampshaded by Arlong when Zoro's wounds from Mihawk's aforementioned-carving open up on him, as he looks on in horror and astonishment while questioning how Zoro could still possibly be alive with such injuries.
  • Not Distracted by the Sexy: He's one of the very few to not fall for Hiyori's beauty, and doesn't even care when she's sleeping on his lap.
  • Not So Above It All: He enjoys his booze parties from time to time. In general, as mentioned in The Comically Serious above, he can be very serious, but thanks to the influence of the Straw Hats, he ends up reacting to, and even participating in their goofy shenanigans. In the Thriller Bark arc, when the Straw Hats start falling one by one to Perona's ghosts and acting depressed, Zoro chastises them for letting something as trivial as a ghost defeat them, when a ghost makes him act depressed, too. Sanji got a kick out of that one.
  • Not So Stoic:
    • He's usually The Stoic, but he does have his moments, such as when seeing Kaku's Devil Fruit powers for the first time.
    • His reaction to Luffy laughing at Pica's ridiculous laugh (paraphrased):
      Zoro: Luffy! Now is not the time to laugh at the enemy's—pfffhahahahaha!
  • Not Worth Killing: He could've easily killed Monet if he used Haki, but he didn't, deciding that leaving her with her resolve broken is enough.
  • Number Two: In times of emotional crisis for the crew, he's taken responsibility of the crew and reminds Luffy of his duties as a captain, solidifying his position as this. This is most obvious in regards to Luffy's duel with Usopp. Later, he and Nami tend to share this role depending on the situation.
  • Out of Focus: Zoro, Robin, Usopp, and Franky are all completely absent during the Whole Cake Island arc due to heading for Wano instead. This mirrors Nami, Chopper, Sanji, and Brook's absence during most of the Dressrosa Arc.
  • One-Man Army:
    • In one of the more awesome moments of the series, he single-handedly defeats 100 expert bounty hunters in Whiskey Peak. And this happens after out-drinking thirteen other people.
    • Post-Time Skip, he manages to defeat most of the Neptune Army soldiers by himself, and after his capture, he plans to do the same with Hordy's men now. Even Usopp calls him one.
  • Overdrawn at the Blood Bank: To an increasingly ridiculous degree.
    • In the 5th movie, the villain says his Cursed Sword will drink all of Zoro's blood. Poor thing probably would have exploded from overfill.
    • They made fun of this in Episode 523. They show Zoro looking at nine pint bags of blood that are being transfused into Sanji, angling as if he had given it all.
  • Papa Wolf: Zoro just seems to care for the crew as much as anybody else. Messing with any of them is a pretty good way to easily anger him.
  • Parental Abandonment: There has been no mention of his parents at all. All we know is that he trained at the dojo at a young age.
  • Parrying Bullets: Or any projectile. Be it bullets, cannon balls, snot bombs or arrows, Zoro can deflect them all.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Zoro used to smile and laugh quite frequently in early arcs. This changed after his defeat at the hands of Mihawk. Since then, he kind of developed a bad temper as pointed out by Sanji in the Arlong arc. However, he's prone to smiling and laughing during the parties the Straw Hats and friends have at the end of most arcs.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Sliced a mountain-sized stone Pica to bits.
  • Pet the Dog: He has his moments with kids. He's not usually trying, but they're there.
  • Power Glows: Occasionally, he will glow when he performs any of his more potent attacks as well as creating illusions, thought of by Kaku as being the power of his spirit.
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner:
    • To Kaku:
      Zoro (to Kaku): Bring on the hardship. It's preferred on the path to carnage!
    • Subverted when he says one to Monet, since he didn't intend to kill her:
      Zoro: Have you ever seen a wild beast, that is never guaranteed to bite a person? I haven't.
  • Quit Your Whining: Says this to Chopper after he gets forcibly taken into Foxy's crew as a result of the Straw Hats losing the first round of the Davy Back Fight.
  • Razor Wind: His Tatsumaki and Pound Hou techniques. After the Time Skip, his Tatsumaki gets mixed with Tornado Move as well.
  • Real Men Dont Cry: It should be noted that Zoro has only been seen crying twice over the course of the entire series. The first time was when he was still quite young and Kuina had just died, and he asked her father for Wado. Quite understandable, especially at that age. The second time, was while he swore to Luffy that he would never lose again (this, after losing to Mihawk).
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni:
    • The blue to Luffy's red.
    • And a much bigger Blue to Sanji's Red, Zoro is grumpy, stoic and hides his affection towards his crewmates with actions as opposed to words. His most powerful techniques are reliant on a cool head and cold, steely focus. However, with him and Sanji's case, it gets switched around when they fight, with Sanji often becoming the tactical, villain-spanning Blue Oni while Zoro becomes the fight-happy Red Oni if suitably provoked. Post-Time Skip: In an extended scene in episode 519 of the anime, when he and Sanji start fighting, Zoro has a blue aura and Sanji has a red one. The battle fury is so intense that all that is seen are the two Battle Auras colliding with each other.
  • The Reliable One: An unusual example, given his abrasive nature, but Zoro is actually a pretty stable rock for the Straw Hats. He can almost always be counted on to be the one who:
    • Shows up in time to save one of the other Straw Hats.
    • Gives sensible advice.
    • Steps up when Luffy isn't being a proper captain.
  • Ronin: While in Wano, he poses as a ronin named Zorojuro.
  • Running Gag: His No Sense of Direction habits mentioned above. Also, his quarrels with Sanji always start with him saying something snarky to Sanji's antics, followed by Sanji insulting him, followed by them trying to kick/slice each other...

    S-Y 
  • Sacrificed Basic Skill for Awesome Training: He has no skills beyond fighting (and drinking). While all of the other Straw Hats have responsibilities like medicine, navigation or sharpshooting with the cannons, the only thing he does is guard the ship and try not to get lost.
  • Set Swords to "Stun": When Zoro wants to avoid killing someone, he'll strike his enemy with the backs of his katanas. Nami and Chopper point out that this could still be fatal due to internal injuries.
  • Scars Are Forever:
    • An enormous one spanning his chest, courtesy of Mihawk.
    • He has a scar on each of his legs from trying to cut his feet off to get out of Mr. 3's candle wax.
    • During the timeskip, he acquired one over his eye, which he seems to have lost.
  • Showy Invincible Hero: In sharp contrast to all of his fights before the time skip, post-timeskip Zoro has breezed through all of his opponents, cockily dishing out Badass Boasts to let them know how beneath him they are. It isn't until he encounters Admiral Fujitora that he even sustains an injury, and that's only a brief stumble in his stride. Zoro's mastery of Armament Haki has taken his Made of Iron credentials to a whole new level, shown by the fact that, so far, neither him nor his swords have even taken a scratch in the New World - Not even after he cuts a walking, talking, breathing mountain into castle-sized pieces!
  • Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: This is largely what Sanji is to him despite being in the same crew (similar to Shanks and Buggy's relationship when they were on Roger's ship). These two never miss an opportunity to belittle, one-up, or humiliate the other. However, they're equally willing to protect and defend each other when push comes to shove.
  • Slasher Smile: He shows a great deal of enthusiasm when it comes to getting into fights. Case in point when Usopp's friends ask him what happened to their captain.
  • The Southpaw: While it is clear that Zoro is ambidextrous, he seems to be predominantly left-handed. He keeps all of his swords sheathed next to his right hip, meaning it would be easier to pull a sword with his left hand. When wielding a single sword, Zoro usually uses his left hand. His single sword techniques have nearly always been executed with his left hand. Also, in Movie 5, in his fight against Saga, Saga stabbed Zoro's left hand after telling him that he had "lost his dominant sword hand in battle."
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Officially, it is "Zoro". All Japanese material and the Funimation dub/subs confirm this. However, the 4Kids dub and Viz's manga spell it "Zolo". It was heavily implied the change was made because someone on the production team worried about being sued by the "owners" of Zorro note , who is moss-head's namesake. Still, the Fan Wank over this grew to a ridiculous extreme; it's one of the biggest backlashes in the history of Western anime fandom. Note that in German, the translators outright use "Zorro".
  • Spider-Sense: Obtained the Observation Haki during the Timeskip, which functions similarly to spider sense.
  • The Stoic: He's a lot more reserved than most of the crew, often taking negative events without losing his composure. He's often the crew's voice of reason.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike:
    • After Luffy's explanation on the difference between pirates and heroes – heroes share meat, pirates don't – which Zoro was not there to hear, Zoro gives an incredibly similar analogy, except he substitutes booze for meat.
    • When Luffy and Nami are captured, imprisoned and restrained by Big Mom's crew, Luffy intends to get out by tearing off his arms, which is very similar to Zoro, who intended to cut off his legs to escape Mr. 3's Giant Candle Service Set.
  • Super Reflexes: Like many characters, he has them and developed them through sheer training.
  • Sword Sparks: Tends to pop up in all of his fights, since he usually fights other swordsmen.
  • Terror Hero: Zoro paralyzes Monet by a display of strength and pure killing intent in the Punk Hazard arc.
  • To Be a Master: His goal is to become "the greatest swordsman in the world".
  • Tough Love: Toward Chopper, when lecturing him on the consequences of being a pirate during the Davy Back Fight, and to Usopp, forcing the sniper to swallow his pride, apologize for his selfishness, and beg before being allowed back on the crew at the end of the Enies Lobby arc.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Wado Ichimonji, his only consistent sword, used to belong to his childhood friend/rival Kuina, and after her death, he uses it to remind himself of their promise to become great swordsmen.
  • Trash Talk: Zoro is the Straw Hat Pirates' resident trash talker in a fight. He enjoys telling his opponents things like "The reason you've never lost is because you've never met me", and of course, he always gives out a "Post Asskicking One-Liner", in which he usually comments on how his opponents were a mere stepping stone for him.
  • Troll: In the Syrup Village Arc, Zoro claims he, Nami, and Luffy (who were at a restaurant in town) ate Usopp as a joke, complete with a scary-looking Slasher Smile, to scare the Usopp Pirates looking for their captain.
  • Undying Loyalty: It took some doing at first, but of all the Straw Hats, Zoro's the first one who took his position very seriously. So long as Luffy continues to meet his expectations where it counts, Zoro will always be the first to have his back and be the last to fail him — and when Luffy makes a decision as Captain of their crew, he'll damn well see that the rest of them follow it, and will absolutely not forgive any mutinous attitudes towards his captain.
  • Volleying Insults: Gets into this quite frequently with Sanji.
  • Weapon of Choice: His three katanas: Wado Ichimonji, Kitetsu III, and Shuusui. He's consistently had Wado Ichimonji, but had gone through several other swords before getting his current remaining pair.
  • What, Exactly, Is His Job?: He has no official position on the crew. However, people who aren't part of the crew seem to think he's the First Mate. Mad Monk Urouge called him the second-in-command when he saw Zoro almost attack a Celestial Dragon, as did Bartolemeo the Cannibal when he saw him in Dressrosa. It appears that regardless of what the crew thinks, other pirates, the Marines, and the world at large considers Zoro the First Mate and treat him as such. However, there are times where he certainly acts as Luffy's Number Two, showing an understanding of military tactics and crew discipline such as during the Water Seven arc when Usopp left the crew. He was the only one to disagree on letting Usopp back into the crew as if nothing had happened, going so far as to quit himself if that happens. He sees Luffy as captain and will follow him to the ends of hell, but understands where lines need to be drawn and is willing to challenge Luffy himself if need be. He's also the second-strongest member of the crew and among pirate crews, there's a strong correlation between a member's strength and their official rank. Oda also mentioned in a data book Zoro is "like the vice captain".
  • What You Are in the Dark: Zoro fully intended to sacrifice himself as part of a deal with Kuma to spare the rest of the Straw Hats. When he made this deal, he was under the assumption that everyone else was unconscious.
  • When All You Have Is a Hammer...: Zoro isn't too much of a thinker. When he sees a problem ahead, his solution is usually to just cut his enemies down.
    Usopp: (when the Ryugu Castle is under attack) We're confined to the castle in the middle of an enemy attack! What should we do?! Wait!! Don't answer that!
    Zoro: Let's cut 'em.
    Usopp: I told you not to answer!
  • When He Smiles: He can be a very handsome man. Or a very scary man. Usually the latter.
  • Wisdom from the Gutter: Zoro is the one to impart knowledge about how a pirate should behave within their group; aspects such as respect, roles and trust are brought up by him when the Straw Hats are in the middle of some inner conflict, as seen during the Davy Back Fight and Water 7. Interesting to note is that Zoro only does this when Luffy, the Captain, isn’t the one voicing this out or he is also participating in the turmoil; the exact course of action a First Mate would take, if they ever had one.
  • With Friends Like These...: With Sanji. The two make quite an impressive team... when they're not fighting, arguing, or hurling insults at each other (which is to say, most of the time). Sanji and Zoro don't just argue a lot; they seem to truly dislike each other, never once voluntarily hanging out or having any friendly conversations for the better part of 19 years since Sanji's introduction. The best they've mustered is being more or less indifferent to each other. Still, deep down, they respect each other as fighters and would go to any length to protect the other from harm.
  • The Worf Effect: He's one of the strongest Straw Hats and often loses to a character, such as Buggy, Mihawk, Arlong, Eneru, Rob Lucci, Oars & Moria, Kuma, and Isshou in order to show how powerful they are.
  • Worf Had the Flu: Zoro says he fights at his best when using three swords, and there's been quite a few fights where he only has two or one at his disposal, most of the times,Zoro is in difficulty, but gains the edge whenever he, somehow, gets to use three swords. A good chunk of the opponents he loses to have a significant advantage against Zoro. Buggy can't be cut at all because swords only disconnect his floating body parts, and he stabbed Zoro after his back was turned. In Arlong's case, Zoro is still suffering from his wound against Mihawk and has already fought Hachi. Against Kuma, he's been already heavily injured and exhausted from his fight against Oars & Moria.
  • Would Hit a Girl: He will cut a girl if he has to.
  • Wouldn't Hurt a Child: A child assassin at Whiskey Peak alongside an assassin dressed as a nun tries to kill him after attempting a Wounded Gazelle Gambit. Zoro quickly brings them both down, but uses the back of his blades to not kill either of them.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: Somewhat zig zagged with. His childhood friend Kuina may have been the only girl that he was willing to fight seriously. Overall, he hits the middle-road of this trope between Luffy and Sanji. While Sanji won't hit a woman even if his life depends on it, and Luffy will fight anyone he has to regardless of gender, Zoro expresses distaste in fighting women... though he will fight if required.
    • An assassin dressed as a nun, attacks him with a child at Whiskey Peak after attempting a Wounded Gazelle Gambit. Zoro quickly brings them both down, but uses the back of his blades to not kill either of them.
    • In his fight with Monet at Punk Hazard, Tashigi claims that Zoro is holding back due to a dismissive attitude towards women. Subverted, after proving to Monet that he will cut a girl if necessary. He admits that there are things he doesn't like to cut, but if he has to, he will.
  • You Can Barely Stand: Happens to him all the time. It's subverted completely post-Time Skip, though.
    • After Buggy stabbed Zoro, Zoro is bleeding profusely, and is forced to fight Buggy's chief of staff, Cabaji, despite barely being able to stand. He dispatches Cabaji with one attack and then immediately after collapses.
    • During the Arlong Arc, Zoro is still hurt deeply from his fight against Mihawk, and is in a terrible position after defeating Hatchan and then fighting Arlong.
    • His fight with Mr. 1 in Alubana is a defining example.
    • Also the Kuma incident at Thriller Bark. Zoro takes in all the pain Luffy had accumulated during his fights with Oars and Moria. The entire area around him is covered in blood afterwards, and Zoro, though still standing and unflinching, looks like he is ready to die on the spot.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: His hair is green. Sanji likes to make fun of him this way, calling him "Marimo" (after a rare form of spherical algal bloom).
  • Younger Than He Looks: Can you believe that somebody who looks like that is 19 (later 21)? Of course, he drinks like a fish, and has been training himself for about half his life to kick ass.

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