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Tear Jerker / One Piece

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This page contains unmarked spoilers. You Have Been Warned!
And this one's from the back story. From the first arc. In the debut chapter. Then it goes From Bad to Worse. (Fortunately, things get better.)

A 20+ year long series spanning over 1100 chapters with plenty of awesome, creepy, heartwarming and funny all around, this adventure story is also well-known for having plenty of poignant, absolutely heart-shattering moments that feel like an inhumanly strong punch to the gut, so much so that this is easily one of the most emotional manga there is. If you need any clue, the prologue itself has a moment of true sacrifice demonstrating the kind of tenor that will underpin the whole story.

See One Piece (2023) for the live action series.

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Super Rookies Era

    East Blue Saga
“Luffy… Help me...'”

  • East Blue Saga introduces Luffy, Zoro, Nami, Usopp, and Sanji. Every single of them has a tragic backstory, with four out of five of them involve losing a loved one for realsies. Two out of five of them involve sacrifice via dismemberment by a mentor figure for the sake of preserving the crew members' lives.

Orange Town Arc

  • Chouchou guarding his store, complete with flashbacks and such, while he's getting totally owned by a giant lion. Then, at the very end, he protects Luffy's escape and seems to have found one last treasure to protect. Bonus points for the fact that the episodes goes into ads with a dog's scream and a bunch of blood as he jumps to bite the trainer, leaving us to think that the dog died. However, the dog is still alive.

Syrup Village Arc

  • The arc in Usopp's village is full of tear-jerkers. First, Usopp is unable to evacuate the village in the face of an imminent pirate attack, because he's a habitual liar. Then, his best friend Kaya turns on him when he tries to tell her about the attack and about Klahadore. Then, Merry is nearly killed and Kaya learns the truth in the worst way possible. She confronts Klahadore, and finds out that he never cared for her (this one brings Kaya to tears). Then there's the break-up of the Usopp Pirates (the author said, half-jokingly, that this part made him tear up). And then we have Usopp's flashback, to the death of his mother no less. Immediately after the flashback, we see the Usopp Pirates decided to follow Usopp's footprints and shout "Pirates are coming!".
  • When Kaya and Merry are at a cliffside, watching Usopp and the Strawhats leave, Merry deduces that Kaya really didn't want Usopp to leave. Kaya just lowers her head, trying to fight back tears.

Baratie Arc

  • Despite initially following Don Krieg's orders, Gin turns on him because he can't bring himself to kill Sanji, who fed him when he was starving, and uses the masks Luffy retrieves for them to save Sanji and Luffy, leaving himself exposed to the gas attack. Sanji, in turn, insists Carne and Patty help him, and they part ways as friends. (Though it's stated that Gin might not survive for much longer, given Krieg's gas attack.)
  • Sanji's farewell to Zeff and the workers of Baratie is as heartwarming as it is sad. Sanji shamelessly thanks Zeff for everything he's done and it moves almost everybody to tears. Even Zeff ends up crying.
  • Sanji's backstory where he and Zeff were marooned for weeks on a sheer cliff face, especially with the knowledge of his origins. Since birth, Sanji was mocked and abused by people who didn't care for him except his mother and sister, so he assumed that the bag of loot that Zeff had was food and the pirate was starving him. But when he went to murder Zeff for the food, he saw Zeff was worse off than he was, all but near death, having eaten only his foot thus ruining his fighting abilities (in the manga), or nothing at all (in the anime). Not only that, the bag had nothing but treasure, as Zeff had given the boy all of the food they had. And all because he and Sanji shared the same dream. For the first time since Sanji's mother died and he ran away to save his life, he found someone who was willing to die for him. It's no wonder why Sanji considers Zeff to be his real father.

Arlong Park Arc

  • The scene where Nami finally asks for Luffy's help. Moments before, she found out that Arlong hired a corrupt naval officer to steal all the money she had worked for eight years to collect to buy back her village from him. He decided to do this when she had one voyage's worth of money left, just to hurt her more. And then, all the villagers, who she knew couldn't fight Arlong and live, gather to do just that, and she can't stop them from leaving. Finally, she just breaks down in the middle of that dusty road, completely helpless to do anything. She takes the knife she was holding and stabs herself in the shoulder, and rips it open to destroy her tattoo of Arlong's mark. Luffy stops her before she can do anything else, but it's still extremely painful to read or watch. Nami had just seen Arlong tear down every hope that she had in a single day.
    • When the officer comes upon her cache of treasure, it is pointed out that a lot of it is covered in dirt and blood, indicating just what those eight years must have been like, in a way that is both subtle and not subtle at all.
  • Usopp pretending to be dead while fighting Chu, and realizing his own cowardice. This was one of Usopp's many steps into becoming a man and fighting for his friends.
  • The fact that Arlong has broken down the village to the point they've practically given up ever escaping Arlong's rule. The fact that a Marine Ship, which was genuinely there to rescue the innocent people trapped on the island, were on the receiving end of a Curbstomp Battle and their reaction shows just how much Arlong must have put them through.

Loguetown Arc

  • After Luffy miraculously escapes an execution attempt by Buggy the Clown in the very same spot that Gold Roger was executed 20 years prior, he and the Straw Hats race to the Going Merry to leave for the Grand Line. While Luffy is stopped by Captain Smoker of the Navy, Zoro is stopped by Tashigi, Smoker's second-in-command. Zoro remembers that Tashigi looks just like his childhood rival Kuina whom he wanted to beat at swordsmanship but died from an accident before their final match. Zoro easily beats Tashigi, who curses herself for being born as a woman and being weak; Zoro remembers this is the exact same quote that Kuina says after she beats him after their one-hundredth match. Zoro then tells Tashigi to get over herself and that she's only as strong as she allows herself to be and not use being born as a woman as an excuse to lose in a contest of skill. He then leaves her, telling her to get stronger if she wants to beat him.

    Alabasta Saga 
Whiskey Peak Arc
  • Igaram's ship blowing up while he sails away from Whiskey Peak. Vivi is devastated over witnessing it and the Straw Hats try to help her move forward.

Drum Island Arc

  • Chopper's backstory is a sad tale. Aside from the abandonment from his own reindeer herd and the fear from humans who wouldn't accept him, his unwitting role in the death of Dr. Hiriluk, the man he had taken to as a father, makes it all the more painful. And what's sadder is the whole injustice of having to tolerate Wapol laughing his stupid head off, and not being able to do a thing about it.
    • The whole thing with Dr. Hiriluk was heartbreaking. Especially his ending speech and thoughts:
      ""When does a man die? Is it when he's shot in the heart with a pistol? No. When he's stricken with a deadly disease? No. When he eats a soup... made from a deadly mushroom? NO!!! It's when... he is forgotten!!! WHAT A LIFE IT WAS!!!! Thank you, Chopper."" (Chapter 145)
    • What he says before that.
      "Soon, a monster will appear. He's my son. Don't hurt him."
    • It is so much more powerful in the anime than in the manga, when you hear the sheer love and devotion in Hiruluk's voice as he speaks, and Franz Schubert's Ave Maria plays in the background...
    • Mark Stoddard, the Funimation VA, absolutely destroys it with the speech, starting off calm but mounting in passion.
    • When Chopper begs the only other remaining doctor on the island to train him, just after she explained he served a poison mushroom to his father figure naively thinking it was some kind of miracle cure, insulting him for thinking something like an all purpose medicine could exist. Then he rushes back to her after Hiruluk dies, waving his flag as he pledges to become the all purpose medicine himself by being a doctor who can cure anything if only she'll teach him. Because promising to defy the impossible is a prerequisite for the Straw Hat Crew.
    • A small but notable from the flashback. Chopper wakes up at Hiruluk's home after the later takes the former in to nurse him back to health and looks noticeably confused at how someone could have possibly been kind to him. The clincher would be when Chopper eats some bread that Hiruluk had set out for him and is so touched by the man's compassion that he bursts into tears.
  • It becomes a very happy tear jerker when you finally get to see all of Dr. Hiriluk's work pay off in the end: when Dr. Kureha fires Hiriluk's red powder as a sendoff to Chopper, it creates a giant pink snow cloud that covers the entire island. Chopper, watching from the ocean, sees the cloud combine with Wapol's mountain to create the splitting image of a cherry blossom tree.
    • Not to mention Dalton's reaction to Hiriluk's words. He was crying at his words and was horrified at how Wapol was acting about the whole thing, and it lead to him becoming the man he is today. Man... it just shows how much of an influence that one man had on this entire island.

Alabasta Arc

  • Luffy's talk to Vivi telling her to not just risk her own life, but the crew's lives too. It really shows how much Luffy cares about his friends.
    • Luffy's simple statement to her is made much more poignant when, much later, it’s revealed he's speaking from personal experience.
    "Vivi... people die."
  • Kohza's father, who was digging the well at the deserted town near Crocodile's casino. He'd been digging that well looking for water for years and never gave up hope of finding it, after Luffy and the Straw Hats passed him on their way to the casino. It's when Crocodile reveals that he personally tormented that man by causing sandstorms that dry up all of the water in the area, which forces the old man to keep digging and looking for more water because he refused to give up. Cue an enraged Luffy vs. Crocodile fight scene.
  • The big climax of the Alabasta arc, especially with Vivi so desperately trying to save the country she loves so much from destroying itself. Makes the victories so much sweeter.
    • Made even more painful when Pell, a Royal Guard, saves the lives of both sides, made apparently clear by the massive explosion scraping the towers and knocking them over...then both the Royal Army and the Rebels get to their feet, oblivious of the sacrifice made on their behalf, and Tashigi realizes in pure disbelief that they are willing to go back to fighting each other. Vivi, having just watched a person close to her heart put his life on the line and now witnessing this, snaps and repeatedly yells at the top of her lungs: "EVERYONE, STOP FIGHTING!", but no one can hear her over the battle. Nami found this an unbearable sight, and even her bossy way of telling the group to stop the combatants seems heartbreaking.
    • Pell's sacrifice. It's extremely rare that characters of any significance are actually killed in this series.
  • Combined with Heartwarming Moments, Vivi's goodbye to the crew.
  • Usopp's breakdown when Mr. 4 and Miss Merry Christmas survive his and Chopper's plan to catch them in their own explosion. He runs away with tears in his eyes, shouting about how hopeless the situation is, and his horrified struggling when Miss Merry Christmas catches up to him and grabs his ankle is very upsetting. Of course, this is immediately followed by him hardening his resolve and working together with Chopper to win the fight.

    Sky Island Arc 
Jaya Arc
  • The defeat of Cricket and the "Monkey Brothers" by Bellamy, who steals the treasure they've nearly killed themselves to achieve. These nice guys are beaten up, just for a treasure. And it's the one left to Cricket by his ancestor, Noland. Bellamy's crew also attacks Going Merry while they are at it and they set a good chunk of drama from the Water 7 arc into motion. To compensate, though, just after that, we have massive awesomeness.

Skypiea Arc

  • Calgara gets shot into the sky with his entire tribe, is driven off of his land along with said tribe, and is denied the chance to signal his whereabouts to his friend. Meanwhile, Noland never finds out what happened to Calgara and others and is branded a liar for his inability to explain the disappearance of the golden city and executed. And as if that wasn't bad enough, his descendants are still being ridiculed after 400 friggin years.
    • And the execution scene is the tear icing on the suffering cake: Noland is hopeless standing to be killed, the King calls strange men who have nothing to do with the story to testify against him, and his actual crew trying to defend him from the audience... for naught. Damn, that was just painful...
    • Before Noland is about to be executed, he ponders about Calgara and hopes that he and the rest of the tribe are safe. We find out later that Calgara was killed in battle trying to retrieve the tribe's homeland from the Skypiea residents so that Noland would find everyone as he left them once he returned. Unless they died at the same time, both of them are thinking about someone they don't know is already dead.
  • When Pagaya pushes Conis, his daughter, out of the way of Eneru's lightning bolt as they are searching for the Straw Hats, taking the hit for her. And Conis's relieved reaction when she learns he survived.
    • Captain McKinley (not the famous one) of the Skypiean White Beret security forces chooses to sacrifice himself to save his men and the evacuating people of Skypiea from Eneru's lightning storm.
    • Everyone on Skypiea praying for God — the real God — to save them. This is after the people lose their faith and some of them are even willing to believe they have no God at all. Their prayers are ANSWERED. McKinley believes it's true proof of God existing.
  • The Shandorian Chief's reaction when he learns the purpose of the Poneglyph of their kingdom has been served, and their civilization no longer has to fight to protect it.
    • Similarly, Gan Fall's reaction to the bell, the Fire of Shandora tolling, signalling peace, and Wyper's reaction when he learns Montblanc Noland has a living descendant.
  • Montblanc Cricket tearing up in joy when Luffy indisputably proves there was a land of gold... in the sky.
  • The absolutely cute way Aisa clings to Laki after learning she's okay.

    Water 7/Enies Lobby
"I'm sorry."
  • The Water 7 arc. The breaking of the Straw Hat crew: the abandoning of the Going Merry, the fight between Luffy and Usopp, and the apparent betrayal of Robin. Luffy's heartbroken reaction to all of these events and his fierce determination to keep his crew together despite the hardships really tugs at the ol' heartstrings!
    • Just Nami finding Usopp after the money has been stolen. He's beaten to hell and back, just lying on the street, and all he can do is say that it's all his fault for being weak, and how ashamed he feels. And even when Nami immediately tells him it's not his fault and to "forget about the Money", he can't even bring himself to answer her at all. He just remains silent, seeming to shut down completely and retreat into his own misery.
    • Usopp's futile attempt at retrieving the money from the Franky Family by himself, he begs, screams and cries, virtually pleading for them to give back the money to fix the Merry... and unknown to Usopp, his reasons for doing so are pointless: the ''Merry'' can't be fixed and he's the only one who doesn't know.
      • Until we find out he knew the entire time! The real reason he challenged it was because he didn't want Merry (a farewell gift from his best friend Kaya after defeating Kuro, mind you) to be essentially thrown away like trash.
  • The reason that the ship was unrepairable in the first place. The shipwrights at Water 7 are the best of the best. There is only one thing on a ship that makes a ship unable to be repaired, a broken keel. The keel of a ship is essentially the ship's spine, everything is connected to it, you start with the keel and then build everything from there. Having that broken is essentially the same as having a broken back, as soon as the news is broken to the Straw Hats everyone stares in shock. There is stunned silence all throughout the room.
  • Nami's despair after the Straw Hats' first day in Water Seven ends with their money being stolen, their learning that their ship can't be fixed, Usopp leaving the crew and challenging Luffy to a duel over the ship, and Robin disappearing. It's easily the Straw Hats' Darkest Hour thus far, and it gets worse before it gets better.
  • Franky's flashback after he is set up by Spandam. Spandam uses Franky's pirate ships to attack Water 7's harbor and frame Tom so that he can be arrested, the result being Tom is seriously injured and handcuffed after the attack. When Franky tearfully renounces all of the ships that he made, stating that he never should have made them, Tom breaks free of his handcuffs and savagely beats Franky in front of everyone watching. Tom then tells Franky that a "Don" stands behind everything he creates and would never renounce any of his creations, regardless of what they are used for.
    • Then when Franky tries in vain to stop the Puffing Tom with a bazooka, to prevent it carrying Tom to his execution, getting run over and severely injured in the process:
      Franky: Hey, Puffing Tom! Just where do you think you're taking your creator?! Stop, Puffing Tom!
    • Franky's Internal Monologue as he tries to stop the Puffing Tom.
      Franky: Tom... I don't want to build ships anymore. I can't love ships that hurt the people I care so much about! I won't do it! But even so, my goal in life is to be just like you! Come back! Come back and teach me once again! 'Cause someday, I want to build my own dream ship! A ship that will proudly sail bravely over uncharted water, all the way to the ends of the world!
    • Yokozuna watches helplessly as Tom is taken away on the Puffing Tom and Franky is nearly killed trying to stop it, showing why he constantly tries to fight the sea train- he wants to become strong enough so that no one else he cares about will be taken away. It gets even worse when you realize that Franky ends up also being taken to Enies Lobby on that train.
    • Kokoro sheds tears of despair and grief, knowing that nothing can be done to help Tom if he's taken to Enies lobby. Franky seemingly getting himself killed appears to have been what drove her to drink.
  • An understated tearjerker comes up when you read the SBS notes in Volume 38, just before Chapter 365, and realize that Kiwi, Mozu and Zambai were all really excited about the sea train's maiden voyage and wanted to become shipwrights, only to fail the exam, end up in a life of crime and join the Franky Family. It hits especially hard for people who have things they're passionate about but aren't able to make careers out of those passions due to not having the talent.
  • Enies Lobby is famous for two major tearjerkers, since Robin's past is finally revealed in detail and one of the Straw Hats dies.
    • The montage of each of the Straw Hats' memories of their journey on the Going Merry, set to one of the ending themes.
    • That whole arc was bookended by Tear Jerkers, as it started with Usopp refusing to believe that Merry was truly beyond repair, and challenging Luffy for the rights to the ship. What makes it worse is afterwards, Zoro tells Luffy that as his captain, he cannot go back on his word or else he will leave the crew right then and there because Luffy must stand by his convictions and not allow others to step over him.
      • During that sequence, we see a shot of Merry's head. The splashes from the waves creates the impression that she's crying.
      • The scene where Franky tried to convince Usopp that the Merry was beyond hope, eventually throwing him under the water to force him to see the damage for himself. You can see the moment where Usopp finally is forced to admit to himself that the ship he loves so much is completely and utterly FUBAR.
      • The moment that, after Merry goes on her last trip to save the Straw Hats and she and the crew go to meet the Galley-La Company to celebrate their victory, Merry cracks and breaks under her own weight a la RMS Titanic, cutting off whatever previous moment of happiness as soon as it becomes clear that there's truly no hope in repairing Merry this time. Long story short, the physical toll of Merry's reckless adventures all across the sea has finally caught up with her, and it was now time to say goodbye. Which leads to the following...
      • Merry's goodbye. Luffy's attempts to apologize to the dying Merry as it was everyone's fault she was in such bad condition, but she just says:
        Merry: Even so... I was happy. Thank you for caring about me. I... was truly... happy.
      • ''Let's go everyone...! Back to the sea of adventure again! I came to take you home!"
      • That farewell is just unimaginably painful for everyone. Zoro and Sanji, the hardened crewmates, are the only ones who don't cry, but the solemn reactions on their faces say everything about their heartbreak and as such they're completely depressing to look at. Usopp intends not to cry because he was preparing for the farewell. Meanwhile, Nami starts crying immediately when she remembers how wonderful it was to get the ship in the first place, which is then followed by a bawling Chopper. Tears well up in Robin's eyes, and Franky goes into full waterworks. Luffy and Usopp hold it back... until Merry says, "I'm sorry" and starts to apologize, which is where all hell breaks loose. As Luffy collapses to his knees and breaks down wailing in tears, the Shift Station crew soon join the tearful mourning. However, as bad as these were, none of them compare to Usopp... because the poor guy simply has a fucking full-blown mental breakdown, all made clear since from behind that mask of his comes an ocean of tears that pour all the way down into his cape and bandages. That and how Usopp bites his lip while rivers of snot and saliva come pouring down his nose and mouth, there's no denying he cries harder than anyone else.
      • And to really hammer the point home, most of the people in the background are suffering almost as much as the Straw Hats. Kokoro, Chimney, Gonbe, the various crew members; even Iceberg looked close to tearing up.
  • Oh, but what about Robin's backstory? First ridiculed all her childhood, with her only friend, a giant, killed by marines while he tried to protect her, as well as every other person who was kind to her — then having the entire incident blamed on her, forcing her to live on the run for the rest of her life. The aftermath, during the Enies Lobby arc, was almost just as bad.
      • Thankfully, this one is a heartwarming one. Robin, after twenty years on the run, has finally found her place in life, and friends that will help her and protect her every step of the way — just like Saul said she would.
      • And just before that line, what she says highlights how utterly devoid of hope her life had been.
        Robin: Live? I didn't think I could wish for that... No one ever allowed me to wish it.
    • Chapter 395: Robin's bittersweet reunion with her mother which began with Olvia trying to protect Robin by denying that they were related:
      Robin: Are you... my mother?!
      Olvia(thinking): Forgive me, Robin! I don't want to make you the daughter of a criminal.
      Olvia(speaking): I think... you're mistaking me for someone else.
      Robin: I'm... I'm Robin! I've grown some...but don't you remember me?! I've waited all this time for you to come home!! You're really... not my mother? I had hoped one day we could hold hands and walk together. I studied really hard and became an archaeologist! I can read the Poneglyph too!! So, please... let me stay with you, mother! Please don't leave me alone again!
    • Robin's last talk with Saul.
    Saul: The sea is vast! Someday, for sure... you'll find friends who will protect you! No one is ever born into this world complete alone! Somewhere out there at sea, I know they're waiting. Go and find your friends, Robin!
    • As Ohara is burning to the ground, Robin is sailing on a raft alone. In tears, she tries to laugh like Saul taught her one final time, but it soon segues into uncontrollable sobbing.
  • After Kaku is defeated by Zoro, he flashes back the memories of him being a carpenter at Water 7 followed by the memory of Paulie yelling "I saw you guys as my friends!". He then has a look of regret of his face and says that people say that an assassin can have no other job. Then he honorably gives Zoro the key.
  • Gomorrah and Sodom. They rampage through Enies Lobby to get the Franky Family and Straw hats to the center. Sodom is shot by a mortar shell but tearfully begs the others, through Chopper's interpretation, to go on without him, and Gomorrah is taken down soon afterward by cannon fire. However Gomorrah, fueled by memories of Franky taking him and Sodom in and looking out for the two, manages to summon up his last ounce of strength. Gomorrah recklessly began to hit a building and had claimed to be blind due to damaging his retina in the battle, as Chopper told the crew through his translation. Still however, he charges through the field and crashes through the Enies Lobby courthouse's courtyard before finally passing out from the pain.
  • The overjoyed look of serenity that washes over Robin's face when she learns Luffy has finally defeated Rob Lucci. She immediately gets Tears of Joy. And it took a veritable maelstrom of punches to get there.
  • Another heartwarming tear jerker is Usopp's apology. At first, he desperately tries to convince his crew to let him back in, but Luffy pretends he doesn't hear anything. Only after he screams how sorry he is from the bottom of his heart does the crew accept him back, crying Tears of Joy.

    Thriller Bark Arc
One last song for Laboon.
  • Not too far afterwards, the backstory for Brook, involving the long-past Laboon and a particularly sad flashback is beyond fucking heartbreaking.
    • Let's break Brook's story down: He spent fifty years floating around on a broken ghost ship completely alone, surrounded by the corpses of his dead friends, who he had been put in command of by his old captain (and could therefore be considered responsible for their deaths), having to live with the knowledge that he still had a promise to Laboon that couldn't be fulfilled, and knowing that even if he somehow managed to make his way out of the Florian Triangle, he'd always be an outcast due to his skeletal form. Yeah, it screws him up a little, but fortunately for him, all it means to the Straw Hats is that he'll fit right in.
    • The anime's version of the flashback's family, where Brook and his crew sing one last time before they die with a smile in their faces. Not to mention how Brook counts down as everybody else dies and he breaks down in tears....
      Brook: What's wrong? Now this is just a quartet... trio... duet... solo. [sobbing] Why? Leaving only the accompaniment...
      • The Funimation dub changes very little with the Binks' Sake scene, only changing Brook's last line to "It isn't right, just leaving the accompaniment.", and yet making it a lot more gut-wrenching.
      • The German dub makes it sound like Brook is jokingly chewing his crewmates out, after the last one of them died. The typical banter, slipped into Brooks tearful voice, makes this hard to watch without tears.
      Brook: Come on guys, what's wrong with you? You can't just leave the pianist alone!
    • The mere fact that this one last recording of the Rumbar Pirates happily singing together also recorded them dying one by one, along with Brook stopping to sing and tearfully counting down. Makes one wonder, should he really play this recording for Laboon?
    • Though it comes during the Heartwarming moment of him joining the crew, the simple fact that Brook is actually surprised he's happy to be alive really hammers home how absolutely terrible those fifty years were to him.
  • A very subtle one, but Usopp not being affected by Perona's ghosts because he's always negative is really depressing.
    Perona: People... As long as they are living look forward to something.... But he...!!!
  • For a moment Brook hallucinates that he and his crew are alive and it was all a nightmare, after sobbing about how happy he was into the deck he looks up... And sees the empty ship. Despite being a skeleton, the look on his face is heartbreaking.
    • Oh, Yorki. Anyone else notice that Brook, who wept openly plenty of times beforehand, is never shown crying in front of his crew again after the last scene with Yorki and his own tragic "promotion"? At least, not while they're alive...
      • When Brook says goodbye to Yorki, he tearfully tells him that one day he won't need his mask anymore and everyone will sing together again. This can only mean that Yorki has no longer been able to sing since he caught his sickness, which was one of the greatest joys of the Rumbar Pirates. Either because the sickness damaged his throat and vocal cords or because he had to hold himself back since singing would infect others. Either way, it's brutal and unfair...
  • The deaths of the zombies.
  • The very end of the arc, when Zoro is alone with Batholomew Kuma following Moria's defeat. Kuma, intent on killing everyone who survived, makes an agreement with Zoro; Zoro (wanting to do whatever he can to keep everyone alive) agrees to embrace the physical manifestation of all of Luffy's pain. Kuma let Zoro sample a small piece of it, which resulted in Zoro nearly collapsing from the intensity; Kuma then allows Zoro to embrace a massive ball of it in order for him to spare everyone. When Sanji finds Zoro after the decision, Zoro is seen standing in a huge pool of blood, he himself barely conscious with his arms crossed and his eyes bloodshot and unable to move.

    Sabaody Archipelago Arc
  • Hatchan being gunned down right in front of the Straw Hats, and it's heartwrenching to watch him plead to Luffy to not touch the Celestial Dragon who pulled the trigger, accepting it as retribution for having hurt Nami in the past.
  • And then there's the Straw Hats' complete and utter defeat by Kuma, followed by their apparent death. Watching them all go down trying to protect the others is bad enough, but once you see the indomitable Luffy get on his knees and cry over his inability to save anyone, the tears start coming hard.
    • The way the anime just hits this chapter. Hoo boy. It is absolutely brutal. By the end of the episode, you will either be all teary-eyed or feel completely depressed.
    • And to REALLY twist the knife, the accompanying montage flashing back to all the moments in which the crew decidedly became Luffy's True Companions, watching them count down from Brook all the way back to Zoro, to the tune of Bink's Sake on violin is absolutely fucking heartbreaking.
  • Chopper's descent of despair from the moment the crew is attempting to split up and run away through to when Kuma makes him vanish is heartbreaking when you remember that he's still just a somewhat-sheltered kid, who has only recently made friends and gone out to see the world. Seeing the other members of the crew being tossed around and hurt by their enemies pushes the young reindeer to the edge of despair, and he ends up overdosing on his Rumble Balls again. It's easy to imagine all of Monster Chopper's roars and blows this time around as his lashing out at all this anguish the intense situation has caused in him, especially when you compare it to his rage-filled reaction to Dr. Hiluluk's death.
  • Kuma's last words to Luffy.
    Kuma: We'll never meet again. Farewell.
    • The kicker? He is technically right. When he is guarding the Thousand Sunny, he states that his mission would be complete once a Straw Hat pirate returns to the Thousand Sunny, that pirate was Franky. Even if they do cross paths again, Kuma no longer has any free will left.
  • Just seeing how cruelly the World Nobles treat everyone as low as dirt is truly heartbreaking. We first see an escaped slave who was once a pirate, who wished to return to his family since he missed his son’s birth. Then the bomb collar goes off and he gets pissed on by a World Noble’s dog. As if he wasn’t any more degraded, he’s kicked repeatedly then shot and arrested. Luffy himself had to be held back as he furiously witness this entire event.
    • Then we’re forced to witness Charloss kick a heavily wounded man on a stretcher down, just because a group of medical staff tried to save the nearly dying man. Once a beautiful nurse catches his eye, Charloss decides right then and there to make her his 13th wife. Maria, the nurse, tries to voice her displeasure, then her fiancée, Judy, immediately runs up and tries to help her. Charloss responds with a bullet to the stomach. Marie is left shocked and screaming for someone to help Judy, but to no avail. Zoro does come upon the scene by chance but is held back by Jewelry Bonney, but he does at least carry off Judy to the nearest hospital.

    Impel Down Arc 
  • Bon Kurei fleeing the fight with Magellan while tearfully apologizing to Luffy.
  • Part of the Impel Down arc after Luffy spent over 18 hours in excruciating agony after being poisoned by Magellan and going through an incredibly painful healing process that would save him but would take ten years of his life, he finally gets to Level 6 where his brother was being held only to find an empty cell. Ace's pained reaction to his brother's foolhardy attempt to save him is equally heart-wrenching given the fact that he already blames himself for the fact that his beloved captain is being drawn out for an ultimate battle with the entire World Government due to his imminent execution.
  • Luffy reaching Ace's prison, fighting his way down to get to Ace, almost dying in the process, only to find the empty cage, is quite heartbreaking. Then, we see Ace several floors up, hearing Luffy's voice, trying to get to his brother, screaming Luffy's name, only to have Magellan stop him. Granted, it was expected, but it still hurts.
  • Chapter 548, "Thank You".
    • Then there's this last bit:
      Mr. 2 Bon Kurei (through the Transponder Snail, choking up in tears): Straw-chan! You just save your brother!... I know you can do... (line cuts off)

    Marineford Arc
"Thank you... for loving me!!!"
A.k.a. Whitebeard War or the Paramount War. A war is never pretty, and when it's Oda telling the story... Get ready for just about every box of tissue imaginable, because to say that this arc is a tearjerker of gargantuan proportions would be a MASSIVE understatement.
  • It turns out the reason Oars Junior is so eager and willing to save Ace is because years ago, Ace made Oars a straw hat that could cover his entire head, meaning that nothing got in his eyes any more, he could go out into the snow without it all piling on top of him, and the feeling filled Oars with joy. This is all shown to us as Oars gets his leg cut off, and he is literally crawling towards the execution's platform, and he comes up just short of being to grab Ace, before he is punctured straight through by Gecko Moria's shadow abilities.
    • This scene is taken up to 11 in the anime. It's much more gut-wrenching when you see Oars Jr's vision fade as he reaches for Ace.
    • Just that scene? The anime made the whole struggle worse, with each flashback to Oars enjoying the hat punctuated by him getting blasted and impaled in between, with horribly tear jerking music playing throughout.
  • When Mr. 3 gives his reason as to why he's helping Luffy rescue Ace.
    Mr. 3: If I told you I was here to mourn my fallen comrade and avenge him... would you laugh at me?!
    • It should be noted that he's referring to Mr. 2.
  • Garp's confrontation with Luffy has a rather sad tone. You can't help but feel for the old man as he tries and fails to find it in him to fight his own blood grandson over his adopted grandson's life...
    • His little chat with Ace is equally touching. He's talking about how he knows he should be happy a pirate is dying, but it's his grandson and that makes him FUCKING CRY because he's torn between turning around and freeing Ace and just sitting there like he's supposed to.
    • When he stood against Luffy when the latter was mere feet away from Ace, he stated that Luffy would have to kill him to get to Ace. Luffy stated that he couldn't do it, and it's become clear that while he does fear his grandfather, he loves him all the same. Probably why this scene is so much more heartbreaking when Garp forces him to attack-and then the man falters at the last second, showing that his love for his grandsons ultimately outweighed his duty.
  • Chapter 573: Ace dies after trying to protect Luffy by Taking the Bullet by shielding him from Akainu's attack.
    • Hell, just saying Ace's name or even mentioning him during and after this arc causes a great deal of the fandom to want to curl up into a dark corner and cry. Some actually have. Especially since a good portion of the fandom were of the belief that Ace would live. Well played Oda-sensei, well played.
    • What proceeded it was just as tragic, Akainu gives a particularly nasty criticism of Whitebeard's beliefs in order to provoke Ace, which works, leading to Akainu attacking Luffy, leading into the aforementioned moment.
  • Chapter 574. Luffy finally reaches for Ace. Only that his older brother is so injured after shielding Luffy from a shot by Akainu that, after speaking to him and Whitebeard & Co. and thanking them all for all they've done for him... he dies. In Luffy's embrace. With a smile in his bloody mouth. Oh, man. That's just the definition of tearjerking.
    • And the worst part? Luffy's reaction at the last panel, looking like Chopper when he cries to reinforce how young he is and how devastating this is for him!
    • In the anime, after Ace dies and Luffy has his heart-wrenching reaction, there's a cut to three images of Jimbei, Whitebeard, and Marco shedding tears. 3 of the toughest pirates at Marineford, crying over Ace's death.
    • That's even not the worst part. THIS IS: "I'm not gonna die, no matter what! That's a promise!" Well, that was a fucking lie.
    • The anime version, Episode 483. It's essentially Chapter 574... extended to 20 minutes long. And it's as excruciating as you would expect.
      • The voice acting between Luffy and Ace is heart-wrenching; Luffy is in such shock and denial even as his dear brother is bleeding out in his arms, and Ace is barely mustering every word he speaks and is devastated that he's leaving his little brother alone.
      • Everything around Luffy and the dying Ace is devoid of motion and color, as if Luffy's grief has frozen whole world still.
      • As Ivankov points out, Luffy fought hard and made many sacrifices (10 years off his lifespan, not counting multiple uses of Gear Second, Bon Clay sacrificing himself to ensure the escape from Impel Down and the chance to meet up with the rest of his crew) to save Ace, but now Ace gave up his life saving Luffy, and presumably making Luffy feel responsible for Ace's death as a result of his body giving out at the wrong moment.
      • The question that Ace spent his entire life searching for the answer to... was whether or not he deserved to be born.
  • Whitebeard's death in Chapter 576 is by far the manliest and most badass death in One Piece ever. Also, his reasons for being a pirate:
    Whitebeard: There is something I've wanted ever since I was a boy...
    Pirate: What?! Tell us what it is!!
    Whitebeard: A family.
    • Also...
      Even in death, even with half his face gone, he would never fall. He will forever be remembered as a monster for the way he destroyed his enemies that day. In this battle alone he suffered 267 sword wounds, was struck by 152 bullets, and 46 cannon blasts, and yet, neither that mighty body, nor his pirate's pride... suffered even one coward's wound!.
    • Made all the more potent because the reason Whitebeard never fled or exposed his back is because that is where his tattoo is, the tattoo that every member of his crew has, the insignia of his family. He refused to run because it would mark the tattoo.
    • The one that does it the way that dies; in a rather cruel sense of irony, one of his own 'sons' (well, former, but the point is still valid) gets his entire crew to kill him. And Whitebeard's Badass Crew, full of hard, seasoned pirates from the New World, even Marco are reduced to tears as their 'Pops' is shot to death, Blackbeard's evil triumphant laugh echoes throughout the battlefield.
  • This may be an odd one, but Rouge's determination to keep Ace from being connected to Roger and Roger's own final request of Garp. The music in the anime did not help.
    • This make's Ace's words more impactful in him saying he took upon his mother's name simply because he owes her a lot despite not knowing her. If it wasn't for his mother's strong will in delaying her pregnancy, he would've died with her.
    • It's also a heartwarming moment on top of being a tear jerker in that Roger was elated that he was having a baby even though he was not going to live to see his child.
  • Episode 488 of the anime: Coby falls over the body of a dead marine soldier, and as he tries to see if he was still alive... he finds a locket he was carrying, and... It's a picture of his family, with a little girl and boy...

    Post-Marineford Arc
"Ace is dead, isn't he?!"
  • There's the fact that, after the war, upon hearing that the Marines won, people around the world actually cheered over the fact that Whitebeard was dead. After seeing what kind of person Whitebeard was, it's heart-rending to see people celebrating his death and that he's vilified by the world as a horrible monster. It almost makes it cathartic when new pirates start popping up because of Whitebeard's final words.
  • Then we get to Chapter 582, and the tearjerkers don't stop coming. Luffy has awakened, and the first thing we see him do is run into the jungle, smashing everything in sight, remembering Ace's last minutes. He starts screaming in anguish at his memories, telling them to "stop" and "disappear". Jimbei walks over to Luffy and tries to tell him that Ace died. Luffy doesn't want to hear it, until he shows his crumbling face, Inelegant Blubbering and all.
    Jimbei: The war has ended. Ace is...
    Luffy: DON'T SAY IT! DON'T SAY ANYTHING! I twisted my cheek until it almost tore off! If it was a bad dream, I'd be awake by now... (voice cracking) it's not a dream, is it? (Luffy shows his painful reaction) ACE IS... ACE IS DEAD, ISN'T HE?!
    Jimbei: Yes. He's dead.
    Luffy (after having reached the Despair Event Horizon, breaking down crying before letting out a loud, soul-crushing Death Wail towards the heavens): AAAAAACCCCCCEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!
    • Luffy's resultant crying is so much, even Jimbei begins to sob.
    • It's even worse if you have a moment of Fridge Brilliance. The reason Luffy's reaction is such isn't just because of Ace's death, but that over the course of a week, he has lost close to everything that matters to him. He failed to protect his friends, and must've hoped that he could at least save family. Ace dying has pushed him over the edge.
    • Actually, if you stop and think about the backstory for a second, it actually becomes even sadder, if possible. After the recent flashbacks, think about what Luffy and Ace went through. For each of his friends, everyone bonded by fighting and believing in one another, which mirrors Luffy, Ace, and Sabo's meeting and becoming brothers. So, their bond is just as strong as any between Luffy and his crew. But then, you have to compound onto that, the extra layer from Sabo's (ultimately apparent) death and how long Luffy and Ace have been together. Ten years. Ten years Luffy had no other friends his age, really had no one else he was close to the same way he clung to Ace. And Ace's promise to live so that Luffy wouldn't suffer again, the sheer crushing pain Luffy must feel over not only losing Sabo (until few ago), but also Ace, when he swore that he wouldn't let that happen again. It's like, reading a hot-blooded shounen manga to the end only to watch the hero lose his best friend. And then, said hero pulls himself together to go on one more adventure and make a new best friend, only for it to happen again.
    • All in all, it's a disturbingly, heart-shatteringly true-to-life depiction of PTSD and the Five Stages of Grief, with Luffy through each and every single one of the latter in such a horrifyingly realistic manner that it's almost too much to handle, not helped by Mayumi Tanaka's truly gut-wrenching performance in the anime. HOLY FUCKING SHIT. WAS IT REALLY NECESSARY, ODA?
  • Chapter 588: Dammit Oda! And right in the middle of his CMOA!
    • To clarify, Sabo managed to once again escape from his family's house in order to set sail as a pirate. The problem? His little boat cuts in front of the ship of a World Noble, who promptly shoots at him, killing him. As if we needed a reminder just how much of an asshole the World Nobles can be... Even when Sabo is MUCH later shown to have survived.
    • What makes this even worse is the fact that Ace never knew Sabo survived. The tattoo on his arm? It was a way for him to remember him by and had Ace survived all three brothers would share all their adventures together most of them being The Greatest Story Never Told themselves. What Could Have Been indeed.
  • Chapter 589: In-universe example of Harsher in Hindsight. Turns out, Luffy was motivated by Sabo's (ultimately apparent) death to get stronger, so that no one else will disappear. Then you consider what's happened to him in the present day...
    • And how for the first time, Luffy has truly questioned his dreams and strength.
  • Quite a bit of Chapter 590: Dadan lashing out at Garp for letting Ace die, Ace and Whitebeard's funeral, and Jimbei forcefully reminding Luffy about his crewmates.
    Jimbei: You little brat! Are you blind to everything now?! Where's your confidence that you can overcome anything?! What happened to that strength you never doubted?! You've now met countless ruthless enemies who can easily crush you and what you believe in. You even lost your brother who was your guide on these seas! A giant wall stands between your eyes and the world! You can't see the way forward right now! Regret and guilt are consuming you!! It may be painful for your now, Luffy! BUT FIGHT IT! Don't dwell on what you've lost! What's gone is gone forever! Try to remember what you still have!!
    Luffy: I HAVE MY CREW!
    • This chapter gets extra Tear Jerker points for Dadan's painful outburst since it seemed to be the point when everything finally settles in. And it's even worse in the anime.
      • It finally hits Makino that Ace is dead and Luffy is suffering alone. That is all.
      • The anime (Episode 505) really brings it home as Jimbei (after a brief fight) talks sense into Luffy and asks what he still has. A tearful Luffy looks down at his hands... and starts counting his friends on his fingers.
        Hey! You wanna screw around, go do it somewhere else. I'm trying to build muscle here!
        Luffy! We got a big storm on the horizon! Make preparations, quick!
        I had a big one. You just missed it! But the next one is gonna be even bigger!
        Scram. I'm almost done. I keep your pants on!
        It's O.K.—no matter how bad you're hurt, you're in good hands! By the way, this might sting a little bit.
        Oh, Luffy! If you like treasure, this research is fascinating! Come see.
        What's up buddy? If you're checking on the cola engine, it's in super shape! *pose* And if you're checking on me, well, I'm super, too!
        Good morning, captain, rise and shine! How about I play you a little song? Really get those bones moving! Yo-ho-ho-ho-ho!
        My crew... I STILL HAVE MY CREW!!!
  • The reactions from all the other Straw Hats when they hear what Luffy has gone through, especially Usopp and Nami:
    Usopp: "Luffy lost his older brother... in a war! Do you know how much pain he's feeling right now?! I have to be with him to see him through his pain... or else I can't call myself a member of his crew!"
    Nami: "He lost Ace right before his own eyes. And I had no idea that was happening! I want to hurry and be there for him before he breaks apart!"
    Later: "Luffy... you're OK, right? I'm sorry! You've always been there for us...And then, when it was our turn, we..."
    • Made worse if you consider why they had the most intense reactions to finding out about what happened to Luffy and some other stuff. In the past, Usopp and Nami have suffered from complexes about being a couple weaker crew members, and worried about not being able to protect the others, likely namely Luffy due to being closer to him than the others and because of how much he had persevered and sacrificed so much for them and everyone else. Also, they were both already deeply worried about Luffy before the crew got separated: Usopp was worried about Luffy hurting himself with his fighting style, and Nami was worried about whether Luffy was okay with the possibility of Ace being in trouble (which she has a flashback of). The sense of helplessness, self-hatred, self-blame, and guilt Usopp and Nami are going through must be unimaginable.
      • Not to mention both know what it's like to lose someone in front of your eyes.
      • It is probably not said enough that Nami is probably the one who knows what Luffy is going through the most: Watching an adoptive family member give their life for yours and all the heartbreak that comes with it.
      • Nami's scenario goes from funny to tearjerker back to funny BACK to tearjerker within a few pages. When she's imprisoned for stealing technology, she's joking about how she's an ex-thief and a pirate and they somehow DIDN'T see that coming. Then she's on her knees begging for her release, tears in her eyes as she tells them about Luffy's plight and how she needs to go to him and be there for him. Then they release her and she's all "KTHXBYE!" as she runs off with all the tech she swiped, dragging Haredas along with her. At that point, the reader is all "oh, that Nami"... then Haredas notices that her "fake crying" hasn't stopped. *sob*
      • The anime does it justice, too. She even visibly blushes when Haredas comments on her still "pretending to cry".
  • Anime: Zoro finding out about Luffy losing his brother Ace. Look carefully at Zoro's eyes during a close up; the man was on the verge of tears.
  • Anime Episode 512: In a very brief scene Dadan and her family of bandits goes to Luffy, Ace, and Sabo's old tree-house. In tears, she holds up a newspaper with Luffy's recent invasion of Marineford and she calls to Ace saying how he succeeded in saving his brother's life. After a few more tears she tells Ace to rest in peace. The scene was very unexpected with the more happier episodes as of late and it really hit the heartstrings hard.
  • Luffy returning to Marineford to ring the bell for the new era and leaving flowers on the battleground. The picture of him standing there, head down, hat on heart is just so touching.
  • Dadan reads the news of Ace's death. Then Garp comes to visit, she starts pummelling him, asking why he didn't stop the execution, how could he let his grandson die, and questions of the like, all while bawling her eyes out. Garp just takes it, not resisting, or changing from his stone-faced expression. It takes Makino pointing out that Garp was probably torn up inside about the whole thing to get Dadan to stop. Dadan practically raised Luffy, Ace, and Sabo; having all but one known to be dead must be taking its toll.

The New World Era

    Return to Sabaody 
  • In-universe example, post time skip:Silvers Rayleigh when Luffy declares he's gonna be the Pirate King.
  • In Chapter 603, Kuma. His last act of free will was to command his new self to protect the Thousand Sunny until one of the Straw Hats returned to reclaim the ship. Kuma keeps to that promise, keeping the Sunny spotless while he himself is heavily damaged, to the point he's all bloody and his machine parts are showing when Franky sees him. Also, right after Franky arrived? All Kuma had to say was "Mission Complete", and he leaves limping.
  • Also in Chapter 603, Rayleigh remembering the first time he met Roger and how much he looked like Luffy, especially the straw hat it marks how much it pains him to have lost his captain and best friend even after 20 years and why always got teary eyed every time he met Luffy or he proclaimed that he would become the Pirate King.

    Fish-Man Island Arc 
  • Chapter 609. Seriously, Fisher Tiger died because he refused to have a blood transfusion. Why would he do it? It turned out he hated humans in disgusted spite of himself, out of being a slave to the Celestial Dragons and being betrayed by Koala's village when they had the Marines ambush him. And considering how awful the former are to everyone, it's no wonder he hates humans so much.
  • Chapter 622:
    "No matter what happens. I won't cry. So please don't kill me."
    • Koala's rescue can be very hard to watch. After Arlong smacks the girl for saying the only thing she knows how to out of fear of certain death by a World Noble, she gleefully begins scrubbing the deck of their ship while the side of her face is dripping blood trying to clean up her mess while the whole crew watches in shock. It's only after Fisher Tiger brands her with the Sun Pirates' Jolly Roger to hide her slave mark and later tells her himself that she is free by POINTING A GUN AT HER, and then throwing the gun overboard as she watches, does she finally break down and cry. Despite the crew's hatred of humans, they treat Koala as their own and escort her all the way to her home, where she says she will never forget their kindness when she leaves to finally meet her mother after being kidnapped.
      • What made the scene extra poignant was that even Arlong of all people was appalled at how broken Koala was. Mind you, he hates humans, but seeing a little girl so messed up she'd wipe her own blood and not stop her own bleeding even jarred him into not attacking her, even after Hachi released him. Let's be clear, the blatant deep-seated hatred of humans could not override Arlong's utter pity of this girl. If anything, seeing Koala in her broken state makes him hate humans even more.
  • Chapter 623: The last words and death of Fisher Tiger. Cue Manly Tears from Jimbei, Hatchi, and Arlong.
    • What cements this is just how ironic it all is. We were told that it was humans who refused to give a blood transplant to Tiger, out of prejudice; however, in actuality, it was Tiger who refused the transplant, because as much as he might have wanted it, his inner hatred for humans because of his enslavement and ambush by the Marines made his very body refuse to let humans be the cause of his survival.
    • You know, Hachi makes it clear in this arc that Arlong wasn't a complete monster; that would be the main antagonist of this arc. It was shown back in his arc that while he hated humans, he cared for his crew as if they were his brothers, whereas Big Bad Hody Jones doesn't care who he kills of to get his way; Fisher Tiger was able to pass on something good to Arlong.
      • It's especially heartbreaking when you go back and remember how he treated Nami in comparison to Koala. It showed that while he was an extreme bastard, he was at least making progress (albeit at a snail's pace). He tried making her happy the same way he did for the only other human that made an impact on his life.
    • Before this sad moment was a happy tearjerker, though: Koala getting reunited with her family after who knows how long. In the manga, most of it is done in silence, but dialogue isn't needed, as you can plainly feel the characters' emotions. Koala and her mother are overjoyed to be reunited at long last, and although the rest of the townspeople are scared of Tiger, the latter doesn't pay much attention to it, and smiles back at Koala as she's yelling her thanks and goodbyes. But then Tiger is ambushed by the Marines, who knew Tiger would be coming because the townspeople sold him out, in exchange for the Marines leaving Koala alone. A fight breaks out, during which Tiger is mortally wounded, unbeknownst to Koala.
  • Chapter 624: Queen Otohime slowly watching all of her effort and hard work in trying to make peace with humans fall apart before her very eyes as everyone who signed her petition recalls their names. She then goes into a drunken, crying rant about how all she wanted was for her people to see the world. And then, after all that, she is STILL willing to save people in trouble, and a WORLD NOBLE at that!
  • Chapter 626 is almost entirely one massive Tear Jerker. The first half has a Heartwarming Moment with all the people united in their love for Otohime and their support for her cause. Then we get to part where, just as everything is going swimmingly and it seems like her dream will finally come true, she's assassinated. It's especially heartbreaking when the two younger princes, trying to keep Shirahoshi from unconsciously summoning Sea Kings and destroying Fish-Man Island, are forced into acting goofy, all while tears are streaming down their faces.
    • What makes it even more painful is that no one other than the dying Otohime and the eldest prince understand why the two princes are doing it, and everyone else berates them for acting inappropriately. The expression on Fukaboshi's face will make you feel for the three princes, even if you never cared for them before.
    • And then there's the pinky promise between the three princes, Shirahoshi, and Otohime, promising to grant her wish.
    • It's made even sadder in the anime.
    • Made even worse when Neptune admits he can't even try to fulfill Otohime's dream because he would just end up killing the humans. On a more positive note, at the funeral, Fukaboshi tells the people that collected signatures will be thrown away, because he knows the people of Fish-Man Island aren't ready to join the surface yet. But, he promises that their hearts will heal and that one day within his lifetime they will join together under the real sun. Damnit Oda *sniff*.
  • Chapter 633 reveals that Shirahoshi knew that Hody killed her mother. Why didn't she tell anyone? Because she promised to Otohime that she wouldn't hate the person who killed her. She had that knowledge for almost 10 YEARS in the tower, and still never tried to hate him. And Hody proceeds to mock her for it. Somebody give this girl a hug.
  • In the battle between Hody and Luffy, Hody taunts Luffy repeatedly about how there's nothing he can do to stop the Noah from crashing into Fish-Man Island and killing everyone on it, while Luffy insists that if he's promised to protect something close to him, he'll never again let someone take it away. Then he pulls out his new move, a flaming punch called Gum-Gum Red Hawk that looks and sounds exactly like Ace's signature move Hiken. As he winds up the punch to smack Hody's face in, the anime switches Luffy's image out for Ace's. It's not hard to connect the dots and figure out that Luffy was referring to the loss of his brother.
  • When the crew comes across a pod of whales, they think one is Laboon and Brook starts to cry and calls out to him desperately, trying to reach what he thinks is his old friend.
  • A minor detail, but it was revealed that orphans of the Fish-man District would sometimes brave the ocean to rise to the surface to look upon Sabaody Park, looking at its wonders but never able to go due to the crushing racism of the humans there. It's shown that Arlong, as a boy, used to look in awe at the park with his peers like Hatchi. It makes the fact that the Arlong Park he created near Cocoyashi Village was built to replicate one of Sabaody's more noticeable buildings, showing that despite the fact he grew up to hate humans, deep down he wanted to be accepted by them.

    Punk Hazard Arc 
  • Learning that the kids on the island have been forcibly addicted to a medical drug to keep them from running away, and the bigger ones will go berserk if they aren't given their daily dose. Chopper is understandably angry..
  • You have to feel sorry for Brownbeard. After losing the use of his legs, he came to Punk Hazard and Caesar Clown took him in, gave him new legs and put him in charge of the centaur patrol. Naturally, he's upset when he discovers his master has ordered his execution for being captured. In fact, his last moments before being shot were remembering his master's kindness right before calling out to him.
  • Chapter 668's cover spread. It's Ace and Whitebeard's graves, two years later.
  • The opening pages of Chapter 673: Seeing those parents screaming for help finding their missing children, not believing they died in "accidents" and how the Marine commander threatened to kill them if they didn't leave him be. It gets even worse when you remember that some of these parents have been in this situation for years, and even worse when you realize that children getting kidnapped, with their whereabouts unknown, is very sadly Truth in Television.
    • Also from Chapter 673: The giant children in a drug-craving mode, attacking the Straw Hats and screaming in joy when Caesar arrives. The effects of this drug are horrifying.
  • Chapter 675 gives us Mocha's withdrawal; terrified by the creepy hallucinations she sees and feeling guilty for "not listening" to Nami and Usopp (Read, her aforementioned Unstoppable Rage moment that was beyond her control), the poor girl screams for the Straw Hats' help as she bangs on the door to the lab. Seeing this happen to anyone is already sad, but seeing this happen to a child is especially heart-wrenching.
  • Chapter 679. G-5 Marines, basically thugs and cannon fodder by One Piece's New World standards, sacrificed themselves to make sure Tashigi got safely behind the closing silo door and is protected from the deadly gas that petrifies a person into a solid, almost nuke-blasted shell. They all give a thumbs up to show they are satisfied with their choice, and are now petrified in various poses of jubilation. This also counts as a heartwarming moment because it shows how much they care for their captain, but it's still very sad, and Tashigi's horrified expression only makes it sadder.
    • Made even worse in the anime since, rather than just standing there horrified, Tashigi tries to run back into the hallway full of deadly gas to save her men, only to be held back everyone who already made it through safely. She keeps begging them to let her go back in even as the door slams shut.
  • Chapter 680: The Marines get brutally curb-stomped by Vergo. What makes it sad is that they believed Vergo was actually a very nice guy, who cared for them even though they're just "a bunch of good-for-nothings", and are so shocked to see him attacking them right now that they believe he's an impostor. Tashigi also tries to stop him, but is easily thrown aside, and can't stop crying over her men getting slaughtered.
  • Momonosuke's flashback in Chapter 685, in a way, because of how oblivious to the truth and innocent the children are. It's even harsher if you compare it to present day, where the withdrawal symptoms left most of them as mindless, candy-craving zombies.
  • Chapter 688 gives us the children's flashback. Just after Mocha ate the drug-filled candy to prevent her friends from eating it (which is already a tear jerker in itself), Chopper has a flashback to when he revealed the truth about Caesar and the candy to her. She remembered the promise she made to her friends about how they were all going to go out to sea and meet each other again when they were adults, and starts to cry because she realizes she will not be able to keep this promise if she stays there. After Chopper promises to her that they will save them and Luffy will kick Caesar's ass, cut to present time, with Mocha writhing on the ground in pain from eating this damn candy.
  • In Chapter 692, it's revealed that Kin'emon was petrified trying to find his son. OK, he doesn't die, but still, he is thought to be dead at that point.
    • And following that, we have poor Momonosuke's absolutely distraught reaction.
  • Chapter 697: The lower G-5 Marines prevent the children from saying goodbye to the Straw Hats, and keep badmouthing the crew while praising the Marines. As the situation builds up, both Marines and children alike start to cry, until Tashigi breaks down and tells her men to stop, saying it is disgraceful. It turns into a happy tear jerker when the Marines reveal that they only badmouth the Straw Hats because if they don't, they'll start admiring and respecting them, even though they're pirates. They then break down in tears as Smoker Face Palms and Tashigi laughs.

    Dressrosa Arc 
  • Chapter 711: Even though at that point, we know nothing about what causes this, seeing Rebecca break down in tears at the mere sight of the Thunderous Soldier or Rage, express her will to win the tournament and live with him, and the Soldier himself being unable to cry back, is surprisingly hard to watch.
    "Even toys have things they want to protect. But tears won't fall from these tin eyes..."
  • Chapter 714: Ucy was only up for a couple pages, but he was so incredibly happy during that time, and had such a great chemistry with Luffy, that seeing him splattered by a giant hurt more than a little.
  • Chapter 717: How the "toys" are created at Dressrosa: they were once humans, victims of a Devil Fruit user from Doflamingo's crew. Not only do they lose their bodies, but their human lives disappear from the memories of the ones close to them. Once turned into toys, they can't live with their family anymore, since it's forbidden for humans and toys to be in the same home. And if they panic and try to force the truth on their loved ones, they are simply disposed of as defective toys.
    • We are given two examples to showcase how horrifying and depressing this reality is: First, a toy is seen desperately begging his girlfriend to remember that he exist, which only frightens her into her new boyfriend's arms, and earns him a trip to the scrapyard. Afterwards, Thunder Soldier beckons a dog-like toy and asks why he is playing with a young boy, with the toy confiding that his real name is Milo and that the boy and his mother are his own family. Thunder Soldier then asks the boy and the mother if they ever had a father/husband, while Milo looks utterly depressed when they both deny the fact.
  • In Chapter 719, we finally learn why Don Chinjao has a grudge against Garp. Chinjao's head was once shaped like a drill and was hard enough for his head-slam Signature Move to deliver enough force to crack an otherwise-unbreakable mountain of ice that was covering his clan's massive horde of hidden treasures. During a battle with Garp, his head was smashed downward, not only robbing him of his Signature Move, but making him powerless to get to his treasure. The most heartbreaking part of this is when we see him smashing his now rounded head to said ice mountain, even as it's bleeding and he's crying desperately trying to unlock his hoard. Fortunately for him, an attack from Luffy undid the damage to his head.
  • In Chapter 721, the reason why Rebecca told Luffy that she doesn't get hungry. She and her mom, Scarlett, are being hunted down by Doflamingo's men, so they could not enter the city or anyplace because Doflamingo's men would be there. When Rebecca told Scarlett that she's hungry, she went out to look for food, but later on, Thunder Soldier comes back to Rebecca holding Scarlett's corpse (who he fails to protect) and was told by Scarlett to give Rebecca the food she wanted. This made Rebecca extremely guilty for getting her mom killed because she was hungry]
    • Also, the crowd in the coliseum booing and jeering Rebecca because she's the granddaughter of the previous king of Dressrosa who everybody hates. This angers Luffy because she spent all her money to buy him food and he forgave her for trying to kill him.
      • Luffy isn't just angry on Rebecca's behalf because of what she did for him, it's also how completely unfair it is that Rebecca is being hated for something that is absolutely and completely not her fault.
      • This becomes doubly tear jerking when you keep in mind that his brother Ace died for the crime of being related to Roger like how Rebecca's crime is being related to Riku.
  • Chapters 727 and 728, which describe the backstory of the Riku kingdom. Doflamingo appeared before the current King Riku and threatened to conquer the peaceful nation unless he was given 10 billion beli, which the king doesn't have, by the next night. He also commands that King Riku not tell anyone about the demand or ask for help from other countries. The king sends out his soldiers to collect the funds from the kingdom's people and he publicly begs for the citizens' support, even falling to his knees and begging them. The people of the Riku kingdom decide to trust their king has a good reason for his request and begin handing over the money. Then, Doflamingo uses his powers to force the king and his army to begin slaughtering the civilians, all to destroy the king's credibility. You see the civilians, mourning over their loved ones (some of whom are clearly children), coming to loathe Riku. The latter even begs for someone to kill him, as he'd rather die than murder his own people.
    • It gets even worse when Doflamingo appears to 'save' the kingdom and people actually begin to cheer for him after he 'defeats' King Riku. Damn, Doflamingo is a monster.
  • Chapter 731, in-universe: Luffy's bawling his eyes out after seeing Sabo his other older brother again. Especially as to our knowledge, the last time he ever cried that much was when Ace died. This shows that Luffy never forgot about Sabo and always thought about him.
    • After Luffy leaves to meet up with his friends, Sabo contacted his co-worker Koala and told her how the meeting went about him seeing his little brother again after twelve long years and Koala hears on the other line that Sabo is about to break down crying because he not only he got to see Luffy again, but he was worried that Luffy was going to punch him after revealing himself.
  • In Chapter 739: we're treated to a flashback showing Rebecca, the gladiators, and the Thunder Soldier enraged over the fact that Doflamingo didn't really resign from his title as Warlord. This is the last straw for Rebecca, who announces to the Soldier her intention to enter the tournament so she can have a chance of taking out Doflamingo with the power of the Flame Flame Fruit. This leads to a heated argument between the two, during which a frustrated Rebecca says that he's not her father, but just a one-legged toy. Rebecca's "My God, What Have I Done?" reaction is understandable, considering that she desperately tried to tell him to come back as he left. At least they got to reconcile.
    • This one gets even worse when you remember he really is her father.
  • Chapter 741-742 shows us Kyros the Gladiator/Toy Soldier's past. He was forever marked a murderer because he avenged the death of his friend. He unwillingly betrayed the trust of the king, the man who offered him a chance at redemption, by stealing the heart of his daughter. And just when he's starting to have a happy life, it all falls apart: He failed to protect the king in his greatest time of need, he was cursed to be a mere toy (though he was better off than other toys as he still had his freewill), and his wife, the woman who threw away her life as a princess just so she could be with him, died in his arms. Even worse, she didn't even remember him. Someone give this guy a hug.
    Toy Soldier: With these tin arms, I can't even feel the warmth of your dying body.
  • When Doflamingo initiates the Birdcage and takes control of random people, making them kill the people around them randomly, the tears in the eyes of those he controls and those they are attacking just shows how scared the people are right now. Especially in the anime where Adaptation Expansion dedicates more time to the horror going on.
  • Chapter 751: Sabo proclaims to Fujitora that if Luffy were to ever ask for his help, he would be at his side in an instant. Then there is a brief panel showing his reaction to Ace's death. He lost one brother; he won't lose his baby brother as well.
    • Even Fujitora seems to show sympathy to his misfortune.
  • How Bellamy has been treated by Doflamingo. Seriously, you'd never think you'd actually feel sorry for him, but then Doflamingo practically beats him to near death, he spends most of Luffy's confrontation with Doflamingo face-down on the ground, and when Doflamingo uses his powers to control Bellamy into fighting you can see how utterly crushed the guy is that his idol was such a dick to him, and that he's actually moved that Luffy cares enough NOT to hit him.
  • One Piece 762: Law's backstory is revealed and it goes beyond horrifying. Law was born in a prosperous city named Flevance whose wealth was built on the exploit of "amber lead". Amber lead is poisonous, but the effects don't show up instantly, instead it build up over the course of generations — each later generation lives shorter than the previous. Because of this generational off-set, the effects hit all generations at roughly the same time, turning its citizens into living corpses who experience constant pain. Surrounding countries thought it was contagious, so a war broke out and eventually destroyed the city. Law's parents were killed, his little sister was burned to death, his friends (along with the nun who was caring for them) were deceived and shot dead, leaving Law the only survivor. He only managed to escape by hiding under a pile of corpses.
    • The really sickening part is that the World Government and the White City's rulers knew about this long before and could have stopped the tragedy, but chose to hide this from the populace to stay rich. Then they ditched the city when things got rough.
    • Even Doflamingo's crew is sickened with what happened there; Baby 5, who had expressed open dislike of Law ever since he joined up, is actually driven to tears after hearing the story.
  • One Piece 763: You know Doflamingo's supposed sob story? He was lying. It was actually much worse. After his family left Mariejois, it didn't take long for the people on the island they set up their new home on to find out they were former World Nobles (not helped by Doflamingo acting like a Spoiled Brat and his father being too naive). They then went on an insane witch-hunt and burned their house down, forcing the family to move from place to place in squalor until his mother died from sickness and exhaustion. His father begged the Celestial Dragons to let his sons return to their status just so they wouldn't have to suffer anymore but they coldly refused. The mob then found the rest of the family and tortured them even after the father begged them to spare his sons and take it out on him. The experience was so traumatic that Doflamingo still had nightmares about it even as an adult. The fact that he intentionally left that part out of his Motive Rant really shows how deeply it affected him. Jesus Christ, no wonder the guy's the way he is.
    • He first used his Conqueror's Haki when he declared in tears he'd execute the entire mob.
    • If you recall more well-known characters in the past who had suffered negative and traumatic effects from the Celestial Dragons' constant abuse, be they slave or non-slave, it's hard to deny that the mob's utter hatred towards nobles as a whole is absolutely justified. One turning good such as Doffy's dad won't be enough to rectify the centuries of hell his people have inflicted on the common folk. Many of them lost loved ones who were too damaged to function properly or even live on.
  • Chapter 764: Corazon/Rocinante kidnaps Law, in an attempt to find a cure to Law's illness. Over the course of 6 months, they go to countless hospitals and not one hospital will even examine Law due to the bad rumor about amber lead poisoning being infectious — in fact, they call Law "the white monster", and attempt to call the soldiers to gun down the child on the spot while Law runs away in tears, knowing he's no longer considered human. And in every instance, Corazon/Rocinante actually destroys each hospital in fury (while Law tells him each time to just give up on him because he's getting worse and worse as the days pass).
    • It reaches a point where Cora starts to find the situation hopeless and laments that he's only making things worse for Law making him relive the trauma. As he puts a blanket over Law as he sleeps, he confesses that hearing Law say "I'm going to die" was heartbreaking. He then recalls being stabbed through the chest by Law, bursting out into tears, admitting it didn't hurt at all because he felt Law's own pain more than his own. He walks away in tears just as Law awakes, having heard Cora's feelings and starts crying as well.
    • The anime makes this scene 1000 times sadder with the accompanying music and voice acting. It's amazing the amount of effort the seiyuu's put into bringing this situation to life and it shows.
    • The first visit at the hospital quickly sets the tone: the doctors immediately freak out when Law reveals he's from Flevance, calling the police and refusing to approach Law, who starts to cry and angrily snaps that he's not a person anymore, only a (false) vector for infection. Cue to Corazon's My God, What Have I Done? face before he goes berserk and destroys the hospital.
  • Chapter 766: Corazon tries to put on a brave face for Law, having been shot multiple times. He gives Law his Devil Fruit, and Law tries to do something to use its medical ability to help Corazon... and nothing, nada, zip, because Devil Fruit abilities don't work like that. So Corazon, not wanting Law to worry too much about the fact he's basically bleeding to death, gives Law a little message to deliver to the Marine spy network to hopefully stop Doflamingo's plans a little... and the first Marine Law runs into? Vergo. And Law actually takes him to Corazon, not knowing who Vergo is and that Vergo is going to beat the living hell out of Corazon some more for leaking intel to the Marines.
    • The last page of this chapter. Even with his mission to save Dressrosa disastrously botched and himself about to die at Doflamingo's hands, Corazon is only concerned about how to save Law's life and gives the boy the biggest smile his bloody, beaten up countenance can muster (which is creepy and hilarious), wishing that Law will remember him by that smile.
      Corazon: Even after I die, will you still remember me? I'm gonna die with a smile on my face. After all, if you're gonna remember me one day... I want you to remember this smile.
  • Chapter 767: Reading this chapter is like being surrounded by a bunch of invisible, onion-cutting ninjas.
    • Doflamingo's and Rocinante's father's death. He held his young son in front of him while his other son put a gun in his head from behind. And he apologized to both of them that he couldn't be a better father.
    • Rocinante's death. Even without Oda's superb artwork that made this moment incredibly painful, Rocinante's death invoked so many death tropes and every one of them was masterfully utilized by Oda:
    • Doflamingo is a remorseless, sadistic killer and before his confrontation with Rocinante, he had murdered dozens of people with his Bird Cage technique in this chapter alone. He derives no pleasure from shooting his brother and is visibly rattled after he does it.
      • The anime intensifies the Tearjerker nature of it. Doflamingo demands why he has to kill another member of his biological family before saying how much Rocinante is like their father. Beyond implying that he harbors some regret or at least pain out of having to kill his father, his face is rage mixed with what looks to be despair. He recoils with pain with a look of anguish on his face when he shoots Rocinante for the first time before coldly finishing him off and walking off with a despondent look on his face.
    • At the end of the chapter, walking away from his hiding place, Law bawls his eyes out as he recalls the memories he shares with Rocinante, with the Doflamingo pirates behind him being none the wiser because Rocinante's Silence power protected Law from being heard — the very power that Law once called useless and uncool. As he gets further away, his voice starts to gain sounds as Rocinante finally dies, but it's drowned amidst the ensuing chaos between the Marines and the pirates. And probably you're bawling, too.
    • To put all of this in perspective, Rocinante's final words to Law before confronting his brother. Reading that, and knowing what's about to come...
    Rocinante: Law... I love you.
    • The anime adaptation for this chapter does it complete justice, with the final OST accompanying Rocinante's death, along with Law's tears, swelling magnificently in all the right places. If the manga version brought tears to your eyes, the anime will have you a crying wreck.
    • In the anime, Law manages to get away from Doflamingo. We can't hear him cry because Corazon still has his powers over him. Doflamingo is discovered by Marines and the Marines open fire. Then suddenly we hear Law's cries and realize that Corazon is dead.
    • It somehow gets even worse when you take into account that eating the Op-Op Fruit didn't automatically heal Law of his Amber Lead disease, it was simply the best means to ensure his survival. By the time Corazon found its whereabouts, Law had finally begun to succumb to the illness and held on through sheer willpower for three weeks. When he did consume the Fruit, he was pale, fevered, clearly dehydrated, had short breath, and was too weak to walk, needing to be carried by Corazon in their last moments together. Watching Law as a defenseless child stumbling through the snow, at death's doors, crying and sobbing hysterically as he's forced to leave Corazon behind... it's heartbreaking .
  • Chapter 769: Everything having to do with Bellamy. Even after Doflamingo grants a rare act of mercy by freeing him from his control, Bellamy still intends to fight Luffy. But instead of being an arrogant prick like he was two years ago, this time he does it because he can't bring himself to lash out against his idol, even after the repeated betrayals he's suffered. He even admits that he's admired the wrong man, but still pushes his body to its limits to perform Spring Hopper, practically begging Luffy to fight him one last time.
  • Chapter 771: Baby 5's backstory was fully explored. She was abandoned at a very young age and her mother last words to her was "You're useless. No one needs you". This had a profound effect on her mentality later in life. This made the Running Gag of her easily falling in love Harsher in Hindsight, as she practically thought of herself as useless all her adult life, and even simple acts of kindness could move her greatly. She was even willing to kill herself because Sai said defeating Doflamingo and his minions would make him happy, and she wanted to make him happy.
    • On that note, Lao G asserts that her Extreme Doormat tendencies made her a "convenient" crew mate. Her own comrade ultimately regarded her as an Unwitting Pawn. You can see the heartbreak on Baby 5's face when she hears that.
    • What makes Baby 5's backstory particularly painful is the fact that what she is suffering from is essentially a real-life disorder referred to as Accommodating Dependent Personality Disorder. While the actions that result from that may (in her case) often be ridiculous, the fact that all of them are very much grounded in reality makes her suffering particularly heartwrenching.
  • Chapter 774 has a literal one: It turns out that Princess Mansherry not only was held captive by Doflamingo, but also forced to heal his injured underlings over and over again (using her tears). The fact that one of the most adorable and good-hearted inhabitants of Dressrosa (even for Tontatta standards) was forced to uphold his empire of evil is most certainly tearjerking.
  • Chapter 775. Good God... Senor Pink's backstory is explored. The reason he is dressed like a toddler is because this is the only way he can make his wife, who is in a catatonic state after losing their only child, smile. It's the kind of backstory that would be perfect for an Anti-Hero protagonist. Even Franky seems moved, despite not having heard the story in full and only seeing the tears Pink shed.
  • Chapter 779: Bellamy is practically begging Luffy to end him, and threatening to kill him if he doesn't. It's what goes in Bellamy's head that makes it painful: "If Doflamingo will remember and respect me this way, then so be it." "I knew I've been following the wrong man all this time... But even fools would want to do whatever they want." And then Luffy, steeling himself, knocks him out in one punch, in a similar fashion on their encounter pre-timeskip (only this time he used Haki). Only this time it definitely isn't played for awesome. And then Luffy, out of extreme anger, shouts Doflamingo's name aloud.
  • Chapter 785: As Luffy and Doflamingo continue fighting, we see the townspeople in turmoil in Dressrosa: Somewhere, a little girl is begging her grandmother to keep running, but the grandmother is too weak to continue, and begs the girl to go on without her. Elsewhere, a doctor is overwhelmed and yells for people to help him evacuate the remaining patients in the hospital. A young woman is frantically searching for her child. An injured man just plain loses the will to live, gives up and stops running. In just a few pages, you can feel the despair they're going through. Fortunately, King Riku gives his people a Rousing Speech, and the people regain the will to live; the grandmother from earlier even stands right up and starts running like hell, to her granddaughter's relief.
  • Chapter 789: Doflamingo easily overpowers Viola, who attacked him in order to buy time for Luffy. Rather than finish her off himself, Doflamingo proves that even half-dead and on his last legs, he still has it in himself to be an unrepentant dick; he takes control of Rebecca's movements and tries to make her do it instead. Rebecca can do nothing but cry and beg for Luffy's help as Viola tries to comfort her niece by telling her to close her eyes, that this is all a dream and she won't hold anything against her. Thankfully, Law manages to switch Luffy and Viola in time, and Rebecca breaks her sword on Luffy's Haki-imbued head.
  • Chapter 794: Sabo's life during his time with the Revolution was revealed: He lost his memories thanks to the injury from the World Noble's cannon. The only thing he remembered was the hatred for his family. And that wasn't the worst, he didn't remember Luffy or Ace at all... until two years ago when he received word of Ace's death. That's right, the first thing he learned of his beloved brothers after his memories returned was that one died and the other was severely injured and he couldn't do anything about it. This caused him so much pain and guilt that he blacked out for days and Ace's death became his personal Berserk Button.

    Zou Arc 
  • As silly as it seems seeing Kanjuro's animated dragon turn back into a drawing after it gave its all to get the Straw Hats to the top of the elephant was pretty sad. Even Robin was a little teary-eyed to see it. Law and Zoro's response to the subject may have put off some readers along with Usopp.
  • In the flashback, Jack (and his cronies) really lives up to his epithet "The Drought" — they fought the Minks for 5 days and nights without stop, especially with Jack's reinforcements continuously coming in droves while the Minks slowly exhausted themselves. Not wanting to wait any more, Jack uses Caesar's gas bomb to take down almost everyone there. What happens next is so cruel that Wanda gets teary-eyed from remembering it — His cronies tortured them while they keep asking the same question ("Where's Raizou?") that the minks became fed up with it, while the stronger ones are crucified and tortured more. And Duke Dogstorm and Boss Cat Viper got their limbs cut off and left for dead.
  • When first met by the Straw Hats, Wanda was so desperate for all she had witnessed during the previous days, she was going to blow herself up with explosives just to take out at least some enemies.
  • It turns out that the Mink Tribe actually knew where Raizou was when Kin'emon asked them. The Minks and the Kougetsu clan of the Wano Kingdom are True Companions, so they would never reveal Raizou's location. The entire country was willing to be tortured and killed for the sake of a friend. Nami, Usopp, and Franky themselves were very tearful about The Reveal.
  • The revelation that Kin'emon's master and Momonosuke's father, Lord Oden, was executed by the Shogun and Kaido. Made even worse by the fact that Momonosuke lost both his parents at the same time, saw at least his mother get killed, and feels terrible for not being able to do anything about it, due to him being too young.
  • Sanji helping his crewmates escape from Capone Bege, while allowing himself to be taken away to Big Mom in order to "put an end to" the problems from his past that have caught up with him. Made all the worse by his friends begging him to come back with them to wait for Luffy together, to no avail. Chopper is crying, Nami looks like she's about to do so too, and when Brook tells Wanda not to chase after the fleeing Bege, he starts shaking and crying as well as he sadly remarks that even if she catches Bege, Sanji won't come back.
  • The status of the Whitebeard Pirates after the timeskip. Under the command of Marco, a year after Marineford they tried a comeback but were defeated by Blackbeard, who sealed his status as a new Yonkou, and are now relentlessly hunted down and decimated by Edward Weevil. Marco is hiding somewhere, and may be devastated for his failure to keep Whitebeard's legacy.

    Whole Cake Island Arc
  • Chapter 829 has Big Mom's 16th son, Charlotte Moscato, one of Totland's Ministers, attempt to reason with his insane mother while she's on a hunger-induced rampage, but he ends up getting scared at the last minute and has his entire lifespan yanked out of him, leaving behind an empty shell. While this scene would normally be in One Piece's Nightmare Fuel section, what also makes this a Tear Jerker is revealed in a later chapter — Moscato's fellow Ministers included his siblings, a few who loved him very much. Seeing their own brother die before their eyes in such a horrible manner left them visibly shaken.
  • Chapter 833 shows us a glimpse of Sanji's childhood prior to meeting Zeff, and it is not happy. Because Sanji was willing to cook for commoners even as a child, his entire family looked down on him, and because he was weak, his older brothers often bullied him. Reiju and Judge did jack shit to help him, and Judge in particular told his son directly that he doesn't need to help or raise him, since he'll be useless as a warrior in the future, and he's nothing but a disgrace to his family name. Another flashback even shows Sanji in a dark and creepy prison cell while wearing an iron mask, his pleas for help going unanswered. No wonder he hates his family's guts.
  • In an early chapter, we get to meet another Supreme Chef, the beautiful Pudding. Who is Sanji's intended wife-to-be and one of Big Mom's daughters. When Sanji met her, it was love at first sight for both parties. Seems like a Throw the Dog a Bone moment for Sanji since he spent two years on an island of transvestites, right? Well, it turns out that Sanji didn't want to give up the Straw Hats and fulfilling his dream of finding the All Blue, so he turns down a perfect opportunity to get laid and share his passion for cooking with someone who is just as devoted as he is. Adding to the tragedy for these star-crossed cooks is Sanji's abusive asshole of a father, Judge Vinsmoke, who sees his weakling third son as a tool for sealing Germa 66's alliance with Big Mom and attaches exploding bracelets onto Sanji so he'll be forced to marry the one he sees as his soulmate but cannot marry due to personal goals and commitments anyway.
  • Chapter 836 reveals that Big Mom uses her husbands like baby factories and discards them as soon as she's done with them. One of said husbands was left trapped in the Seducing Woods, prevented from seeing his daughters Chiffon and Lola again. Imagine how some of these fathers must feel, to marry someone who only sees them as breeding material and be thrown away before they even get to see their children...
    • Big Mom's relationships with her children isn't really great, either. She sees them all as tools that she can use to connect the entire world through marriage and create a diverse family so she can fulfill her dream of creating a utopia where she'll be able to treat all of her subjects as equals. Her controlling behavior in regards to what she wants vs. what her children want has caused one of her daughters, Lola, to run away to find love on her own terms, while the rest of her siblings completely gave up on defying Big Mom. And her hunger-induced rampages has even resulted in the death of one of her sons!
  • Chapter 839 gives us another Kick the Dog moment from the Vinsmokes. After Sanji reminisces about his time with Zeff, he's horrified to find that Cosette, an adorable and innocent young cook who he protected earlier in the chapter, was beaten so hard by Niji that she fell unconscious, her face horribly swollen and bruised. Worse, Niji only did it to spite Sanji, who he knows can't fight back or else Zeff will be killed.
    • Poor, poor Cosette! Despite her Undying Loyalty to the Vinsmokes, her services are rewarded with nothing but abuse and criticism. So when Sanji eats and praises her cooking, Cosette sheds Tears of Joy as no one even thanked her for cooking delicious meals before. Then the happy moment is later ruined when Sanji's brat of an older brother Niji decides to Kick the Dog by beating her up so he can spite Sanji for refusing to act like a "proper" royal, while also knowing that Sanji fighting back will make Judge send assassins after Zeff.
  • Chapter 840: More of Sanji`s childhood is revealed; due to him being the only one of the 5 Vinsmoke children not to have their Super-Soldier genetics activated, he was bullied by both his brothers and his father; was constantly the weakest/slowest to his siblings, always losing to them during training where he repeatedly had near death experiences, before finally his father claimed he had died in a training accident, locking him in the dungeon in an iron mask with the intention of leaving him to die of starvation.
    • Not only that, but Sanji's brothers showed no grief for him when he "died" and even laughed at his "funeral", discussing how useless and weak he was.
    • Sanji's older sister Reiju is revealed to have cared for him all along, even fixing up his wounds gained from training and their brothers' bullying when the rest of the family wasn't looking. But she fears becoming a target of abuse as well if she supported a "weakling", so she's forced to hide her true feelings by smiling and laughing whenever she saw Yonji, Ichiji, and Niji tormenting Sanji, even though it strained her relationship with Sanji later on. Even during Sanji's "funeral", Reiju is still smiling as to not alert her remaining brothers who are mocking him nearby. And she can't defy her father Judge's will either, even if it meant Sanji will have exploding bracelets strapped to his wrists to force him to marry Charlotte Pudding.
    • Good god, the chapter's ending. Child!Sanji starts sobbing after he was forced to wear an iron mask and left in the family dungeons to rot by Judge, crying for his father and apologizing for being born weak, and ultimately going unheard.
  • Chapter 841:
    • After seeing the success of Sanji's siblings, Judge says he loves them, something he's never told Sanji. Right in the next panel, Sanji is seen, eating all alone in the dungeon with his iron mask.
      • What's even worse is that it's implied that Sanji can hear all of this and he doesn't even react. He doesn't get angry or sad that he isn't also loved or allowed to be outside with his siblings, he just continues eating like nothing happened.
    • When Sanji was escaping with Reiju's help during a battle, Judge caught him. Rather than lock Sanji up again, he decides to allow him to leave, seeing it as a perfect opportunity to remove what he claims is 'the one blemish in his life'. However, he orders Sanji to never mention his affiliation to the Vinsmokes to anyone. Even worse, the fact that Judge allowed Sanji to leave only to forcibly call him back to Germa for the wedding gives the impression that Sanji has no free will in his life.
    • Young Reiju explains herself to young Sanji as she fixes him up, confessing that she's scared of punishment and that's why she doesn't openly defend him. In fact, she is the one who gives him the chance to escape the cell, using her Super-Strength to bend the cell's iron bars, and when she learns what Judge told Sanji about leaving, she tearfully tells him not to return and not to keep his ties to the family, hoping that he will finally be able to build a life for himself...
  • Chapter 843:
  • Chapter 844:
    • Sanji desperately tries to make Luffy leave by knocking him down and insulting his dream and crew, but Luffy knows him too well to believe his act, so he stays where he is and yells that he refuses to budge until Sanji comes back, and how he will not eat anything not prepared by him. While he says that, Sanji goes back to the carriage... and he starts to cry over what he's done to Luffy and Nami. It's just so evident how much he wants to follow them.
      • Keep in mind Sanji still has his mask covering his heavily bruised face. When he lightly touched it back in Chapter 842, he felt pain from his injuries...but at the end of this chapter, Sanji is pressing his hand hard on his face without even flinching. His emotional pain is so great, he can't even feel the physical pain from his body.
      • Also, at one point, Sanji was prepared to give his life for Luffy in Thriller Bark. That was how loyal he was to his captain. To be forced to deny Luffy like that must have been devastating.
      • And just to rub salt in the wound, one of the last panels involves Sanji remembering his childhood, particularly how his brothers bullied him mercilessly before flashing forward to his first meeting with Luffy were they were shown to be not so different in their beliefs of dreams when Sanji shared his desire to find the All Blue. It's implied that Sanji sees Luffy as a brother and is very broken to turn his back on him for the blood brothers who never accepted him for who he was.
    • Hell, while Luffy's decision to not eat anything until his friend comes back is incredibly sad, it's also awesome and sweet. Luffy, whose head will turn the moment he sees food, is willing to take up fasting for his friend! It really hits home how strong the Straw Hats' bond of friendship is.
      • There's even more to that. Luffy's willing to starve himself to death. Sanji was on the brink of starving to death, so he would, without hesitation, make a meal for anyone to stop them from dying through starvation. It also creates a parallel between Zeff's hunger sacrifice which was what caused the two to bond. Thinking of the thoughts going through Sanji's head really tugs on those heart strings.
    • Meanwhile, Nami slaps Sanji across the face for his actions, calling him "Sanji" instead of the usual affectionate "Sanji-kun" as she bids him farewell. Sanji avoids looking at her in shame.
      • The anime drives home how horrified she is to witness the "fight" - in the span of a few minutes, Nami goes from seeing through his obvious lies and false attitude toward Luffy to begging, screaming for him to stop hurting Luffy and promising that they'll leave Totto Land without any further attempts to bring him back. For all her punishment of Sanji for his perverted antics, she ultimately trusted him like a brother, just like the rest of the crew...and that trust has just been shattered.
    • And in the background (again), Sanji's family show their usual asshole behavior, with his brothers laughing at his pain while Judge compliments his "severing ties" with his True Companions. It's clear that the only one who cares for Sanji is his sister Reiju, even though she can't express it openly.
  • Chapter 845:
    • A starving Luffy continues to not budge despite candy rain pouring on both him and Nami, swearing not to eat anything that wasn't made by Sanji. Sure enough, he is found by a large army consisting of the defeated Cracker's older and younger siblings, and crewmates. Despite Luffy putting up his usual good fight, him not eating food for a while during this situation is becoming increasingly worrying...
    • When Pudding learns of Sanji's Dark and Troubled Past and how he got coerced into marrying her in private, the poor girl immediately switches between sobbing and apologizing for inconveniencing him. Not wanting to see her future husband suffer any longer, she decides to call off their wedding, but Sanji, knowing bad things will happen to his friends and his Baratie family if their Arranged Marriage is somehow delayed, he pulls Pudding into a hug and persuades her into going with it for the sake of their loved ones, all while a violent thunderstorm rages outside.
  • Chapter 846: Despite King Baum being forced to help the Straw Hats against his will, the Big Mom Pirates are unreasonable and see him as a traitor, with King Baum being cruelly executed by Amande, who makes sure that his death is as slow and painful as possible.
  • Chapter 847: Much to Nami's shock, Big Mom doesn't give a lick that Lola's okay. In fact, she'd prefer it if she were dead because Lola ran out on Big Mom's most crucial political alliance. Even worse, she plans to learn where Lola is from Nami and dispatch assassins after her. It's even worse in hindsight as Lola still loves her mother even after rebelling, was under the impression that she would help the Straw Hats if they needed it by showing her the vivre card, unaware that her mother has essentially disowned her.
  • Chapter 849: Combined with Nightmare Fuel, seeing Reiju injured and beaten for unknown reasons...
  • Chapter 850: As Sanji is preparing to leave a lunchbox by Pudding's window's side, he overhears her true colors. She's really a cruel and sadistic person who's been playing everyone aside from her family for fools, and she and her mother plan on killing the Straw Hats and the entire Vinsmoke family in one go at the "wedding". Sanji, who up until then saw Pudding as his one and only ray of hope in this situation, is utterly devastated.
  • Chapter 851: Sanji listens on outside of Pudding's window, standing in the rain, as she continues to mock him to Reiju, up to and including how she feels that his opening up to her about his abuse is pathetic and hilarious. He tries to light a cigarette, but the rain prevents his lighter from working on the wet cigarette — finally, a close up of his face reveals that he's sobbing, and it's utterly heartbreaking to see how hurt he is. Just the knowledge that Pudding doesn't care for Sanji at all even has Reiju shedding a tear. Even worse, Pudding reveals her Memo Memo Fruit power that can rewrite memories, which she uses on Reiju — now Sanji's only loving family member can't even corroborate his story. Unbeknownst to him, however, his friends are about to come and save him, and thankfully he does recover his wits as the following chapter shows, but it's still deeply unpleasant.
    • As if that wasn't heartrending enough, Pudding starts to do impressions of the reactions Sanji will have when the truth about her deception is revealed, ranging from buggy-eyed Wild Takes to revulsion. When it cuts back to him, we see that her impressions are the furthest thing from reality. Sanji's reaction isn't shock, or anger, or even the kind of sobbing we've come to know from this series. He's subdued, but unquestionably hurt beyond words. He looks completely broken.
    • The anime adaptation makes it worse, if that's even possible. The scene of Sanji trying futilely to light a cigarette goes on for a while, accompanied by a somber piano and the crashing rain. He finally manages to get a light, but as he lifts the lighter to his cigarette, a drop of rain douses the flame. Now consider the subtext. Getting to marry Pudding was the only thing about his nightmarish circumstances that made Sanji happy, with her presence being the one thing keeping him going after being forced to abandon his friends. Then, just as he began to look forward to it, that glimmer of hope was snuffed out just as swiftly and cruelly as that flame.
  • Chapter 852: Reiju is informed by Sanji of what happened before Pudding rewrote her memories, and her reaction to knowing Big Mom's plans is... thinking she'd be better off if she'd let it all happen, being killed along the rest of her family. It's further clear at this point that she never approved of the actions and attitude of her father and other brothers, but she was forced to play along and feels she doesn't deserve to be considered better than them. How huge must her sense of self-loathing be? Reiju also tells Sanji how their mother died exactly: she basically poisoned herself to try and stop the genetic enhancements in her sons before they were born. It worked only with Sanji, who grew to be a much better person than his father and brothers, and for this reason she considered him her biggest accomplishment.
    • The chapter also reveals why Sanji's quadruplet brothers are complete assholes: because Judge programmed them that way while they were still in utero, because he believed Virtue Is Weakness and wanted all of his children to become utterly remorseless Tykebombs who will help lead Germa 66 to greatness. As said above, Sora completely disapproved of this so she took the drug that killed her in hopes of saving her sons. While Sanji came out successful, Ichiji, Niji, and Yonji weren't as lucky. It makes one wonder if they would turn out differently had Judge not decided to genetically alter them like he did.
      • Sanji's reaction when he learns the drug led to his mother being bedridden and dying: "You mean I killed her?" Oh, Sanji...
    • The fact that the entire Vinsmoke family turning out the way it did can be all boiled down to Judge and his violent ambitions. Had he not decided to mess with his children's Lineage Factors, his wife Sora would be still alive and the Vinsmoke children would still have their mother. Sanji would have a happy childhood, his sister Reiju wouldn't have to act like a Stepford Smiler all the time, and the other three quadruplets wouldn't act like the cruel and bratty assholes they became as adults.
    • The reason Reiju has such self-hatred is because, while she was left with her emotions, she was given a different procedure that left her unable to defy their father, so she feels she is an accomplice.
    • The anime adds a cathartic/saddening scene where the people from the Underworld mock and laugh at Judge for crying and Morgans even takes pictures of his shame for the headlines. Devils show no sympathy at all for their other fellow devils, just amusement. The underworld doesn't operate with honor like you think it does, Judge: it just operates for self-gain and amusement.
  • Chapter 856: Sanji tries to explain why he can't go back with the Straw Hats, as he insulted the captain, has to protect his father figure from Big Mom's retaliation and just can't stand the idea of his birth family being slaughtered, even if they're all assholes. Luffy, being the Determinator, doesn't listen anyway and tells Sanji to say how he really feels. And Sanji breaks into tears, as he knows what he wants but is unable to see a way to have it without someone being hurt.
    Sanji: I wanna go home to the Sunny!
  • Chapter 858:
    • Big Mom being a terrible parent to her children is quite sad. Because of her hatred towards Lola for running out on her Arranged Marriage, she takes it out on her twin sister Chiffon just because they have the same face. It's no wonder Chiffon is okay with her husband's plan to kill Big Mom. She even flat out stated that she doesn't consider her her mother anymore.
      • Episode 861 of the anime expands on this in a manner that is both horrifying and saddening. The episode actually shows poor Chiffon getting a brutal beating from Big Mom on-screen. Chiffon hadn't done anything wrong, and is one of the few of Linlin's children to be a good person. To see her laying beaten by her own mother, begging her to stop, complete with tears and blood running down her face...
    • Furthermore, it's implied that Chiffon's siblings knew what was going on between her and Big Mom, but did nothing to stop it, most likely out of terror towards Big Mom just like Reiju couldn't help Sanji when he was abused.
    • Loki's, the prince of Elbaf, situation is also rather sad. He fell in Love at First Sight with Lola and proposed to her instantly. The day of the wedding, Big Mom shows up with his bride to be and it's a Twin Switch. He thought he was going to marry the love of his life, but instead, she ran away to find love elsewhere and Big Mom tried to trick him. In the anime, Lola just briskly walks away from him and the flower he offered her falls from his hand. His smile then morphs into a sad frown, even when Big Mom tries to trick him, he doesn't get mad, he just sadly shakes his head.
  • Chaper 862:
  • Chapter 864:
    • The last person you'd expect to burst into tears does. Vinsmoke Judge. He and his family have guns pointed at them from all sides, unable to escape due to all of them being restrained to their seats with hardened candy, and completely defenseless because all of their weaponry and equipment were unwittingly confiscated, but only he and Reiju are able to understand the horror knowing that their deaths are imminent. His sons, however, had their emotions stolen from them by Judge himself, and couldn't care. Niji and Yonji are laughing like demons, and Ichiji actually chides Judge for looking so pathetic instead of waiting for the inevitable peacefully. Judge realizes something's wrong with them, then gets a quiet "serves you right"-esque thought from his daughter while Prospero taunts the hell out of him. Judge poured his whole life and heart into his dream, twisted though it be, and is having it thoroughly crushed. You have to remember that from his perspective, he grew up in the heyday of the Germa Kingdom, only to have it destroyed and his happiness ruined, and he wanted to punish the North Blue for taking all that away from him. With that possibility now gone, he's got nothing left to live for and quickly gives into despair, wailing angrily at Big Mom, who's currently so angry that she lost her mind too badly for even a shred of his protests to be heard, which to Judge is worse than her giving a fickle response of something along the lines of "I Lied".
    • Sanji's side-fight with Pudding deserves mention as well. Despite receiving a genuine compliment about her Third Eye for the first time, Pudding still tries to kill her groom-to-be, while desperately trying to convince him that she's still Evil All Along. She screams at Sanji that she has deceived countless people before, but Sanji feels nothing but pity for her and his response is to calmly ask if she was one of them. She doesn't stand down right away, but it does makes her even more reluctant to kill Sanji as planned, showing how thoroughly broken she is.
  • Chapter 865:
    • The chapter sees an even more surprising moment of sympathy toward someone: Big Mom. Upon seeing the broken portrait of Mother Carmel, Big Mom starts wailing in grief. Mother Caramel raised her, and the Straw Hats took away that one memento of her caregiver, not knowing how much Caramel meant to Big Mom. For as much of an Asshole Victim as Big Mom is considering the amount of blood on her hands, it still does tug at your heartstrings.
      • Episode 835 expands on Big Mom's reaction. After being shown Mother Carmel's broken portrait, Big Mom snaps out of her emotional stupor and grabs the pieces, her voice trembling, "M-Mother..." as she futilely tries to put them back together. Once she fully realizes what happened, she starts breaking down and sobs as her Haki-fueled grief literally knocks out everyone around her.
    • While thinking, Reiju admits she has been ashamed of being a Vinsmoke her whole life, proving her heart made her feel guilty of all she's had to do while under her father's wing, and that Sanji isn't the only one to reject the family name. She's also right up there with Sabo's spurning of his likewise royal heritage and his own abusive family, who mortified Dragon when he said he regretted being born a noble.
  • Chapter 866:
    • One finally gets to see Big Mom's life as a child. Born a giant unlike any other human children, she was abandoned by her birth parents on Elbaf because her size and presumably, her devastating hunger pangs for sweets had caused so much destruction in her home town. She patiently waited for her birth parents to come back, unaware that they had no intention of ever returning and lied to her about it. She was taken in by Mother Carmel, a kindly nun who ran an orphanage for displaced children of all races, but although Mother Carmel raised her well and always forgave her for her actions, Big Mom frequently got in trouble in Elbaf because her strength and her good intentions caused her to wreak havoc.
    • When Big Mom was first taken into Mother Carmel, the other orphans jeer and bluntly tell Big Mom that her parents abandoned her, plain and simple. Even if it was true, that was pretty harsh of them. Keep in mind some of, but not all of, the kids dumped on Carmel were so rotten that their own parents couldn't handle them anymore.
    • Even more jarring is that Big Mom Used to Be a Sweet Kid, compared to the Ax-Crazy, homicidal ruler of Totto Land who is a bad mother to her own children. What caused her to become the monster she is?
    • While Carmel forgave Charlotte's misguided knack for causing chaos, Fallbeard no longer sees Charlotte as a child after her hunger-driven rampage through Elbaf. He sees her as a demon.
  • Chapter 867: It's shown everything Big Mom knew and loved about Mother Carmel was a lie. Carmel was actually a child slaver who used her orphanage as a front for her operations and a way to gather more orphans to sell to the Government. The only reason she acted nice to Linlin (and enabled her bad habits) was because she considered Linlin to be her best product due to her Super-Strength and was looking forward to a huge payoff. The only person Linlin believed loved her only ever saw her as a thing to be sold, and it looks like even after all these years, Big Mom aka the adult Linlin still doesn't know that.
    • Before that revelation... little Linlin kills an adult Giant warrior named Yorle in her first hunger-driven rampage, and once the Giants do get her the food she was craving, she happily and obliviously falls asleep. Carmel, who had put the fire down with her own powers, then sees Lord Fallbeard about to kill Linlin in her sleep and begs him to spare her. (For her own ulterior motives, but that's for later). Fallbeard is actually crying as he does so, since Yorle was his best friend and without knowing it, a naive and superpowered girl like Linlin robbed him of what the Giants prize the most: an honorable death in battle. He knows it's not completely her fault, but he still can't forgive her and he only spares her when Carmel says she'll take Linlin and the kids somewhere else.
    • The implication that Little Linlin accidentally ate Carmel and the other children in the foster home in her sixth birthday is both horrifying and heartbreaking. Others believe that Carmel set this up to get rid of Linlin, which isn't much better.
    • Linlin finally found a place she belonged. The other children genuinely liked her and she genuinely liked them, and she had a kind caring mother who loved her. As far as she and the other children knew, anyways. Those times were so dear to her and left such an impression that she still emulates them decades later (the tea parties, her love of croquembouche, her dream of a place where all races can come together, even why she became a pirate because the kids thought pirates were cool, etc). Then one day, they all just vanished, leaving her alone. Possibly because she ate them all by accident. And now, just as she's reminiscing on those happier times and crying that her mother is gone, she's about to get assassinated. She may be an unforgivable monster (although that's arguable because she clearly has some sort of mental illness), but it would have been a really terrible way to go.
  • Chapter 868:
    • It's clear that Big Mom's dream of creating a utopia where everyone can see "eye to eye" (i.e. make everyone giants) came from her desire to recreate her happy childhood days where she lived happily in Mother Carmel's orphanage, which makes her Villainous Breakdown even sadder because Mother Carmel never even cared about her at all.
    • Although Big Mom is a homicidally insane monster now, she wasn't born that way, rather she was a very Cheerful Child who suffered a powerful eating disorder and was put through two subsequent incidents of Parental Abandonment in the course of a year. Her Start of Darkness began when she met Streusen, a Supreme Chef and failed pirate who would later be employed by her. Streusen took her in after Mother Carmel disappeared, and enabled her worst traits in his encouraging her to follow her dreams, which made her become increasingly twisted until she turned into... well, "Big Mom". It draws an eerie parallel to the story of Doflamingo, in that both their descent into evil started with the Parental Substitutes who now work for them.
  • Chapter 874: King Baum seems to have finally met his end after being engulfed in the overwhelming flames of Prometheus. After surviving all kinds of punishment, he finally gets torched, and being a tree, we know that's practically the end of him. Unfortunately, it turns out Homies can fall and love and get married, too... and King Baum has a fiancé tree who stitched him back together...
  • Chapter 877: Pedro, in a desperate attempt to free the Sunny (as well as Brook and Chopper) from Perospero's candy, detonates his remaining bombs at point-blank range, all while somberly remembering a conversation with (presumably) Carrot about the importance of seeing the Straw Hats safely from Whole Cake Island and Totto Land. The Straw Hats and Carrot can only watch in horror (and for Carrot, tears) and scream Pedro's name as the explosion engulfs the coast of Whole Cake Island.
  • Chapter 884: Chiffon's father, Pound, is being beaten up by Oven just outside the cake factory Chiffon's in, and she doesn't even know.
  • Chapter 886: When Chiffon comes out to help transport the cake, she briefly sees Pound... and she wonders who he is. Even when he tries to protect her from Oven, she doesn't remember he's her father. note 
  • Chapter 887: Pound spends his final moments thinking of Chiffon, of how much he's wanted to meet her and how terrible he felt for not being able to be by her side... and then he mentally congratulates her on her happy marriage to Bege right before Oven kills him. Chiffon, who as said above could never meet him, has no idea her father sacrificed himself to save her... But somehow Pez can sense it, as he begins to cry immediately after Pound is slain by Oven.
  • Chapter 893: As a child, Katakuri was constantly shunned for having a gaping mouth full of boar-like fangs, and everyone called him a "pelican eel" and ran away every time he drew near, as if he was a monster that would eat them up. This is why he went to such extreme lengths to hide what he really is from his own family, even cultivating an image of himself as a handsome, serious warrior, and killing those who saw his mouth or unsightly habits.
    • Flambe does not help. She idolized Katakuri, or rather, a warped image of him that defines what she sees as perfect. The moment Katakuri reveals his mouth and stabs himself in front of her for interfering, she calls him "lame" and ridicules him for being an imperfect freak who dared to get blood on her. Her subordinates willingly join in, and, on Flampe's orders, take pictures of Katakuri's mouth with the intention of humiliating him. She even disowns him as her brother. Then, Katakuri actually stops for a moment in agreement with Luffy to use their Conqueror's Haki to knock her out cold, showing that Katakuri would rather let his enemy help him take out a nuisance from his own family than put up with her bratty insults. Yes, Katakuri is THAT willing to return the feelings of scorn, so he's definitely sick of being an emotional chew toy because of his face.
    • This makes the Charlotte family huge Hypocrites — for all their supposed acceptance of people of all races, they won't hesitate to bully those they see as "ugly". Pudding was one of the few children to find this out the hard way. That they do this to their own family members only makes it worse.
  • Chapter 896: Katakuri is finally defeated by Luffy. Counts as Awesome indeed, but remembering that Katakuri is Big Mom's strongest child and Big Mom's general reaction to failure is outright killing them or worse, looks like Katakuri is up for very rough times ahead. Worse than his Dark and Troubled Past regarding his face for that matter.
    • Luffy takes a minute to remove the fedora he decorated his straw hat with and places it over Katakuri's face to prevent anyone else from seeing his disgrace. Unfortunately, Luffy can't do anything about the fact Katakuri has collapsed, which everyone will definitely see and shame will come no matter what... but at least some of it has been mitigated.
  • For Dramatic Irony in Chapter 898, Luffy and Sanji managed to escape Cacao Island but they left behind Pekoms who had pulled a Heroic Sacrifice to enable Luffy to escape. It may not seem like much, but considering that Luffy's a guy who usually doesn't leave a friend behind, this doesn't feel right.
  • Chapter 899 takes a moment to look at the unrelated inhabitants of Big Mom's empire, specifically the islands she herself tore apart in her rampage. Hundreds of people clearly lost their homes and everything they had, and as one individual points out, they paid the Emperor with their very souls to be protected only for the Emperor herself to be their destroyer.
  • Chapter 900. Oh God, Chapter 900. The mother of all Hope Spot appears, as the Straw Hats' final escape attempt with the help of Germa 66 and the Sun Pirates is foiled by Big Mom and her children. Oven boils the sea, defeating the Sun Pirates instantly, while the Big Mom Pirates bring in special weapons to overwhelm the Vinsmokes and Germa. Soon, after that, Big Mom's singing flagship arrives and fires on the Thousand Sunny, with Luffy, Sanji, Jimbei, Nami, Chopper, Brook, and Carrot on board. It's telling that the last panel of the chapter is their Jolly Roger floating in the sea.
    • Assuming that the Straw Hats survived the cannon fire, it might look like the Straw Hats lost their second ship as well...
    • There's also Pudding hearing everyone singing her praises for making the cake that finally calmed Big Mom down... and she's sitting there, clearly wanting to scream what she's thinking, knowing that Sanji's the one who truly did all the work. She's pretty much assured to be a favorite-child to Big Mom and everyone else in Totto Land... and all she'd really like is to have Sanji again.
  • Chapter 901: It's shown the Sun Pirates planned from the very start to sacrifice themselves so Jimbei could escape, saying they were trading their lives for his and his new crew.
    • Furthermore, the flashback revealed that the Sun Pirates had sacrificed the very ship that was built by the late Fisher Tiger as the decoy for cannon fire from Queen Mama Chanter in order to distract them long enough for Wadatsumi to smuggle the Thousand Sunny with his mouth.
  • Chapter 902: While the chapter ends on a happy scene, nearly every other event that takes place is a tearjerker in one way or another:
    • Sanji learns/realizes that Pedro is dead, and feels somewhat responsible. Carrot attempts to console Sanji by patting his head and telling him that Pedro was doing what he thought was right, only to break down in tears herself.
    • Through a series of flashbacks, we see not only how much self-loathing Pudding had during the entirety of the arc, but also what truly transpired in the Chocolat Town alley. While she was making fun of Sanji and his thoughts on their then-upcoming marriage, she mentally reminds herself that no one could love someone as freakish and monstrous-looking as her. And at the end of the arc, Pudding requested something from Sanji, and promptly gave him a farewell kiss, but immediately removed his memory of the event and ran off in tears, as Sanji asked what her request was. As Pudding thinks back on her actions, she slowly goes from softly crying to outright sobbing.
    • Finally, we see more of Katakuri's flashback. While part of a tender moment between himself and Brûlée, the flashback also explains just what happened to Brûlée's face: In an attempt at revenge, the bullies Katakuri beat up for making fun of him choose to attack Brûlée instead, giving her the horrible wound that would become the scar she bears in the present story. Thus we learn the reason for Katakuri's adult behavior and scarf: He felt responsible and naive for letting his sister get hurt.

    Reverie Arc 
  • Chapter 908: Kuma is being used as an "invincible slave" by the Celestial Dragons. Roswald is seen stabbing Kuma while making him crawl on the ground and serve as his mount. Making this even worse is The Reveal that he's the former king of the Sorbet Kingdom. Seeing such a fine man and enigmatic ally to the Straw Hats falling from grace is heartwrenching.
    • Jewelry Bonney makes a reappearance, and has a connection to Kuma. When she sees him turned into a mutilated pincushion and slave, she starts crying and swears to never forgive the Celestial Dragons for what they've done to him.
    • Sabo's outraged reaction when he sees Kuma's sorrowful state. His comrades barely kept him from flying into action that very moment to save him, and have to remind him that even though they've come to Mariejois to save him, if they do get him back, he won't be the same kind Kuma they all knew because he's been made an example of out of the World Government as punishment for a prior transgression by having his mind taken away and turned into a mindless Pacifista.

    Wano Country Arc 
  • Chapter 909: For all the piracy Whitebeard did, he kept virtually none of his wealth, because it all went to sustaining and building up his impoverished homeland, meaning there is no inheritance, and that the most fearsome pirate before the Paramount War was one of the least avaricious pirates in history, only vilified as one by a corrupt World Government. It goes back to his conversation with Gold Roger, where he had no desire to find the One Piece, and Marco is visibly grieved to think back to how selfish his late captain appeared from the surface when he was really doing nothing but being a protector of the weak and lost. This chapter makes you believe the world truly lost someone special and extraordinary when he died, and no one can ever truly replace him.
  • Chapter 911: O-Tama forces herself to live in a region polluted by Kaido's factories because she's waiting for someone to come back. The one she wants to see again? Ace.
  • Chapter 912: As predicted, Tama does not take it well when Luffy informs her about Ace's death. She immediately falls unconscious after realizing what truly happened to Ace.
    • As revealed by her master, Wano used to be a prosperous and powerful nation during Oden and other daimyo's rule, which all changed when Kaido invaded Wano, and the Shogun turned traitor on them. Many people were killed in the struggle, and most of the nation was turned into viciously ravaged industrial areas with rampant pollution and toxicity.
  • Chapter 920: Kuri's current ruined state becomes even more awful after hearing Kin'emon relate Kozuki Oden did everything he could to make it wealthy and peaceful... only for Orochi and Kaido to ruin his work and spit on his legacy.
    • Momonosuke and the surviving retainers frantically calling for the boy's mother and baby sister right after escaping to safety. It's strongly implied Lady Toki willingly stayed behind in order to secure them.
  • Chapter 923. Remember Tama? The girl who wanted to see Ace again? She and Lady Speed were brutally attacked by Kaido during his drunk rampage. What's worse is that after Luffy attempts to fight back, he is knocked out of his Gear Fourth by a single swing from Kaido's studded club.
  • Chapter 925: Moria finally returns, only to learn that he was too late to save Absalom from Blackbeard.
    • Although Absalom is an Asshole Victim by all standards, it was also him who saved Moria from being killed by Doflamingo, and possibly one of Moria's real friends (along with Hogback) after Kaido decimated his first crew. Devon imitating Absalom as the Blackbeard Pirates lured him was therefore both a Kick The Son Of A Bitch and Yank the Dog's Chain, and it's not sounding very pretty for Moria either.
    • Harsher in Hindsight when we remember Moria's past. The reason Moria is on the present time a giant Jerkass is because Kaido slaughtered his crew, which made him decide to rely on zombies from that point forward. Now he is witnessing the same chain events that broke him in the first place, finding out that one of his few living comrades, who has always been loyal and even saved his life from Doflamingo, was killed by a Yonkou and he was once again powerless to prevent it.
  • Chapter 928: The famous courtesan Komurasaki is introduced begging an old man she loves to keep her from Lord Orochi's clutches. Said man spends months working his ass off to get as much money as he can, including selling off all his possession including his house, and forgoing food and medicine he needs, all while giving her the money to hold on to so he can buy her freedom. When he finally gets the last bit of money he needs, she reveals that she's actually been conning him the entire time and has spent all the money he gave her. Going by her underling's reactions, she's done this several times.
    • This, admittedly, no longer enters Tearjerker territory, once one recalls that said old man also sold off his family. Even more so with the revelation he and his friends were committing arson to make a fortune of funerals and repairing homes.
    • It also no longer counts as Tearjerker when it's later revealed that Komurasaki actually targets people with connections to Orochi and his allies, stealing their funds and supplies for the rebellion's cause.
  • Chapter 939: After her parents were murdered and her brother disappeared into the future thanks to Toki's powers, Hiyori, who didn't have high hopes of actually getting to see him again, lost the will to live and went mute for some time during her childhood. Though it goes into Heartwarming when it's revealed that Kawamatsu taking care of her and trying to make her laugh eventually broke her out of this.
  • Chapter 942: The public execution of Tonoyasu AKA Shimotsuki Yasuie. As the former Daimyo of the Hakumai region 25 years ago, he was just as beloved back then as he was in Ebisu Town in the present. Needless to say, many mourned his death as his body fell to the ground.
    • Despite Ebisu Town's residents witnessing Yasu's death, they proceed to laugh hysterically, sporting the same permanent smiles they've had since their introduction. Even Yasu's daughter Toko starts laughing, despite being worried about him as she ran to his side when she heard about the execution. Zoro is understandably pissed off about their laughter, but Hiyori reveals that they are unable to express any other emotion, because of their exposure to the SMILE Devil Fruits.
      • It gets worse. SMILE doesn't affect people's eyes, showing us how they really feel. Despite smiling before he died, there were tears in Yasu's eyes, knowing that he'll leave his loved ones behind. And the tears shed by Toko and the Ebisu Town residents were mostly from genuine sadness rather than laughing too hard.
  • Chapter 943: O-Toko tries using the Toad Oil medicine Usopp was selling earlier in the arc hoping to revive her father. Not only does it not work, Usopp was there to see her try it and he starts crying for giving her hope.
    O-Toko: Daddy, please come back to life! This medicine'll make you feel all better! It's called Toad Oil and-
    Usopp: No O-Toko! I'm sorry! That medicine it—.
  • Chapter 944: Kid is recaptured by the Beast pirates and returned to Udon prison along with the shogun's hit-man Kamazo. Why? He recognized that Kamazo was really his crew-mate Killer, unmasked and seemingly forced to have eaten one of the failed SMILE Devil Fruits, and tried to save him. Knowing his childhood friend hated his own laugh and showing his face, seeing him laughing uncontrollably, unmasked, and tears pouring from his eyes both enrages and devastates Kid.
    • What's worse, Kid isn't really aware of what failed SMILEs do to someone. All he knows, is that Killer hated his own laugh and here the man who was his right-hand in his crew is, laughing uncontrollably because he can't express anything else. Kid wonders what they did to Killer to break him like this.
    • The anime manages to make this scene even sadder by having Kid plead with Killer to stop laughing while sinking to his knees. You know things are bad when Eustass Kid starts getting teary-eyed
  • Chapter 950: What happened to several of the brave samurai while Kin'emon and the other members were gone. Ten years prior to the arrival of the rest of the Red Scabbards, Ashura-doji/Shutenmaru tried to talk several men who were awaiting the return from attacking Kaido. The men, however, grew too impatient and launched an assault on Onigashima Island before the 20 years were up. Needless to say, none of them returned and the remainder of the men made gravestones to honor the memory of their fallen comrades.
  • Chapter 953: Though we learned in the previous chapter that Hiyori ran away from Kawamatsu when she was 13 to keep him from starving to death trying to take care of her, and he forgave her for it, we see via flashbacks in this chapter how he reacted to it when she left: after reading Hiyori's note thanking him for everything and saying she'd be okay, he tearfully searched all over the country for her, and when he wasn't able to find her, went to Oihagi Bridge to commit seppuku for failing to protect her. He was only stopped from doing so when he met Onimaru the fox, and realized that he could save the swords from the graves for the rebels to use in the future against Orochi's forces. When the fox attacked him for it, Kawamatsu begged him to understand why he was doing it, and also noted that he needed to do this just so he could do something to help the rebellion...because if he did nothing, the guilt he felt from losing Hiyori would consume him.
  • Chapter 956: Something, and nothing good, had happened concerning Alabasta and Sabo after the Reverie. Shirahoshi is understandably worried about Vivi. We see a wider reaction to whatever happened with Sabo in Mariejois; all of his friends and loved ones are either shaken or crying (the revolutionaries, Makino, Dadan). It sounds like Ace all over again, right after we just learned that he was alive all this time.
    • 98 chapters later, we now know what happened with Sabo: he apparently killed Cobra. All of those who hold him dear now have to live with the knowledge that Sabo is a murderer, not knowing about the later revelation that he was apparently framed for the deed.
  • Chapter 958: Act 3 begins on a dour note. As Orochi and the citizens of Wano celebrate the Fire Festival, the Akazaya Nine arrive to port to find nobody there. No Straw Hats, no yakuza, no fellow samurai. The utter despair Kin'emon shows when trying to contact everyone is heart-breaking.
    • The Prologue of Act 3. It's immediately after the Roger Pirates' victory over the Grand Line, and the entire crew celebrating. Oden, seeing the Golden Pirate Age will begin soon, as well as seeing the world for himself, decides to become the Shogun of Wano and open Wano to the world to adjust for the changing times. When we all know that Oden's efforts are doomed to fail, with him and his wife being killed soon after the proclamation by Orochi and Kaido, with his daughter growing up in conditions no father would ever wish to see, his son and his loyal retainers flung into the future for a bare glimmer of hope, and the entire Kozuki family name dragged through the mud for even daring to propose to end Wano's isolationist policy.
  • Chapter 959: As Kin'emon points out that even if they can try to do the raid on Onigashima for next year, they won't be able to pull off the same tactics due to Kaido's army hunting them down and getting the supplies needed such as food. He says that before they left Kuri, Okabure Town was burnt into the ground by Holdem's forces after they took responsibility for their actions... and his wife O-Tsuru is among them!
  • Chapter 963: Little Kawamatsu reveals he and his mother were shipwrecked far away from Wano. When her mother tried to ask for help, people considered them monsters and threw rocks at them, and she ultimately died from mistreatment. As she was dying, she told her son to to pretend to be a kappa, so that he wouldn't face further discrimination.
  • Chapter 969: Oden, after failing to kill Orochi thanks to the usurper's family saving him, is forced to start dancing naked in the streets of the Flower Country, resulting in the people losing their faith in him.
    • Oden's reaction upon learning of Gol D. Roger's execution in the newspaper.
  • Chapter 970: Oden is distracted by one of Orochi's minions who disguised herself as his son, giving Kaido enough time to finish him and his forces off. After they are captured, they are all sentenced to be boiled alive.
  • Chapter 971: This chapter reveals the Kurozumi family were persecuted by the Wano citizens due to the failed coup by Orochi's grandfather. And considering Orochi and his family's introduction as living in utter squalor and being servants to other Daimyos... it's hard not to understand Orochi using his 25 years of rule upon Wano for petty revenge on his dissidents, the civilians and the Kozuki family, and the later executions of all the Daimyos that supported the Kozuki clan, rather than actually ruling Wano properly.
    • It's also revealed that Oden was forced to dance naked in the streets to protect Wano. If he did not do it, Orochi would have sent Kaido to kill hundreds of Wano's people as payback for what had happened to the Kurozumi family. At this point, the people who hated Oden for his antics have a My God, What Have I Done? moment.
  • Chapter 972: Oden keeps his promise and stands in the boiling pot while keeping his allies above his head. But then Orochi changes his mind at the last minute and orders Oden, his allies and his family to be executed by firing squad. It's at that moment the people of Wano realize Oden was truly a generous man and that Orochi truly is a tyrant who wants to run the country to the ground.
  • Chapter 974: It's revealed The Mole giving away the details of the alliance's plan is Kanjuro. It turns out that everything from the moment he met Oden and the other retainers was all an act and he's actually a member of Kurozumi clan. Not only is this heartbreaking for the Scabbards, who considered him a friend, but for fans as well, as unlike with Pudding, readers had more time to get to like him, so this reveal is a major punch to the gut.
    • The reason why he did was sad as well. Since he is a part of the Kurozumi, Kanjuro was forced to watch his parents die in front of him. This experience broke him and caused him to only find a perfect role to die himself.
  • Chapter 983: You can practically see Momonosuke about to wet himself when Orochi threatens to have him crucified in public.
  • Chapter 984 & 985: We learn the details of Yamato's upbringing, and needless to say it was not a happy one. After Yamato expressed a desire to be Oden presumably around the age of eight, Kaido gave him the first of many ferocious beatings. For the past twenty years, Yamato has been kept from leaving Onigashima by being forced into wearing explosive shackles that will detonate the moment he sets foot outside Wano. Yamato even admits that he doesn't know if the shackles really are explosives or if her father is just keeping her in line with psychological manipulation, but either way, he can't take the risk.
    • The fact that Kaido had the restraints fashioned like shackles very similar to the ones Oden died wearing rather than the typical slave collars makes it seem like he's cruelly mocking Yamato's wish to emulate Oden.
  • Chapter 986:
    • The cover art, while Played for Laughs, shows the Firetank Pirates, implied with Lola in tow, taking off without Pound. After finally being able to properly meet his children and reveal who he is to them, it appears the twins either didn't believe him or did not take the news well.
    • Though Kanjuro was defeated off-screen, the Akazaya Nine take a moment to mourn him anyway. Enemy or not, their memories of the good times left their mark.
    • The remaining forces of Orochi defect to Kaido's side without a moment of doubt. Sure, Orochi himself was an Asshole Victim of the highest degree, but as Hyogoro puts it, Fukurokuju and Hotei — and the ninja and samurai under them — don't have a drop of the honor or pride you'd expect from soldiers of Wano.
    • It turns out that Kaido wasn't bluffing about the explosives on Yamato's handcuffs — they detonate shortly after Luffy manages to get them off and hurl them away. Even if he's declared himself Kaido's enemy, Yamato is clearly upset that his own father would do this to him.
    • Momo is brave enough to keep his own name in the face of execution, but inwardly, he laments that he won't be able to face his mother and father as a young man. Thankfully, the Akazaya Nine show up to put a stop to that.
  • Chapter 987: As silly as the concept is, in a way it's sad that Nami's brief friendship with Zeus has ended due to him being reclaimed by Big Mom.
  • Chapter 1000: Kin'emon laments that the Akazaya Nine failed to avenge their beloved master.
    "We... We regret!! Haa... Ha.. In the afterlife... Lord Oden... We wouldn't dare show our faces to him after this!"
  • Chapter 1008: The Akazaya Nine cry tears of joy at seeing Oden, but their hopes that a miracle has occurred are dashed when it is revealed to be copy made by Kanjuro, who survived his earlier fight with them. The copy then proceeds to injure Ashura Doji.
    • When Kiku apologizes for failing to finish him off, Ashura Doji says that it is only natural, as even he would hesitate to cut down a friend.
    • As the copy tries to blow itself up, Ashura Doji tackles it so that the others won't be caught in the blast, giving them the opportunity to go after Kanjuro. The anime accentuates that this sacrifice ultimately killed Ashura.
  • Chapter 1011: Tama's sadness over Okabure town being burn down as like her they suffered living only on scrap.
  • Chapter 1012: It continues for her in this chapter as Tama helplessly watch Komachiyo being attacked by Ulti and getting hurt herself when she begs Ulti for mercy.
  • Chapter 1013: Poor Zeus spends his last few moments being put through the emotional wringer. First, he sees that Big Mom and the others had replaced him with a new storm cloud, Hera. Then when he spots Nami, he sees that she still hasn't forgiven him for turning against her. And then, rather than dismiss him so he can take part of her soul with him, Big Mom has Hera devour him so that she can absorb his energy. When he sees Big Mom go attack Nami, he apologizes to her for betraying her and performs his first and last act of defiance against Big Mom by sacrificing himself to save Nami and Usopp from Big Mom's wrath, which results in Big Mom ripping his soul out. Nami tries to save him by giving him his favorite food, but he's too weak to eat the clouds and he ends up being devoured by Hera. No Redemption Earns Life / Death, no Epiphany Comeback, not even a Dying Moment of Awesome as this series so often does — Zeus just dies and that's it (or so it seemed at the time). Only someone like Oda could make people feel for a cloud.
    • Tama suffered once more as when Big Mom felt she was leaving her, Big Mom tried to attack her making this the second time she had suffered a Yonko's wrath (being a little kid adding to the pain). Tama didn't experience Big Mom before her memory so the former's impression of the latter was they were friends, so having Big Mom try to hurt her just makes it that much worse for Tama.
  • Chapter 1014: Tama crying over hearing Luffy was defeated and that he fell into the ocean. She already lost much and is now hearing about this.
    • Kin'emon and Kiku's hardships continue with Kanjuro as the latter hesitated against Kanjuro when he disguised himself as Oden. Even though she knows that it is not real she couldn't bring herself to attack as she was reminded that Oden raised her. Even though Kin'emon took down Kanjuro successfully, he was saddened since Kanjuro seemed like Kin'emon's best friend for as long as he could remember.
  • The anime adaptation expands on Brook getting hit with Black Maria's mist, hallucinating his old crew still being alive. It transpires that he was never fooled by the illusion for a second, but humored it for a spell because he found it nice to see them after so long. Unfortunately, he still has to cut his way out of the situation.
    Brook: How cruel of you... Opening my old wounds like this... The only thing you brought back to life today... is my grief. My friends have been dead and gone for years. I'm in pain. Can you not see that? So much pain. It's unbearable... And now... I'm going to break my own heart all over again. Even though I no longer have a heart to break!
  • Chapter 1029: Sanji's genuine look of despair when he realizes he has his brother's powers, awakened by his use of the Raid Suit. While it gives him the strength he needed to survive Queen's brutal assault, he pays the price by losing his emotions. He realizes he's Slowly Slipping Into Evil and is so distraught that he flees the fight with Queen hot on his tail.
  • Chapter 1031: The aftermath of the above. Sanji during his distress had tried to help a random partygoing woman — and the next thing he knows, the woman is beaten bloody and terrified of him. Sanji is mortified when he realizes he has violated his primary redeeming quality. He makes the grim decision to destroy the Raid Suit even with Queen bearing down on him, and drops all his animosity with Zoro to ask him with complete and total seriousness to Mercy Kill him if he loses any more of himself. It's mitigated later when it's revealed that the girl's wounds were actually caused by Queen trying to chase Sanji down, and though he and the woman clear things up, the brief confusion was still a sobering moment for the reluctant super soldier.
  • Chapter 1035: King's flashback reveals he was an imprisoned test subject in Punk Hazard, due to being the last known Lunarian and was only freed when Kaido broke him out when he was escaping. It's a big reason why he conceals himself behind a mask and a body covered outfit to prevent anyone from ratting him out to the government.
  • Chapter 1042: As the Luffy and Kaido battle seems to hitting its climax, the head CP0 agent distracts Luffy by holding him down. Kaido sees him and flashes back to the similar incident during his battle with Oden. The look on Kaido's face as he smashes Luffy's head is pure heartbreak and devastation. Once again he had a Worthy Opponent that could grant him the death he craves, in a fair fight... and once again someone barges in and ruins it.
  • Chapter 1050: It's revealed how Yasuie ended up consuming a SMILE fruit. When Toko inadvertently ate a piece of the defective fruit, Yasuie, not wanting his adopted daughter to suffer alone, also took a bite.
  • Chapter 1051: Practically all of Wano erupts in tears at Momonosuke's proclamation of his return and assuming the position of Shogun. As he speaks to all of Wano, he informs them their time of darkness is over and he will work with them to remove the pollution and harm done by Kaido, Orochi, and the Animal Kingdom Pirates.
  • Chapter 1054:
    • An implicit tearjerker applies when Admiral Ryokugyu has a Devil Fruit that can instantly revitalize the desolate wastelands of Wano, but won't do that because the user is a complete bastard who threatens to murder the citizens of the country just to get Luffy's head.
    • It's revealed that during Reverie, Nefeltari Cobra was apparently assassinated by Sabo and that Vivi has vanished. Even if the rumor that Sabo had murdered the Token Good Teammate of the twenty founding countries wasn't true, the concept of the Straw Hats' close friend missing and her father dead is heartrending to know. What's worse is that the Straw Hats are completely unaware of it!
      • Even worse is the fact that, even in spite of Cobra's reputation as a wise and fair ruler, people around the world rallied and cheered over Sabo's supposedly killing him, declaring him the "Flame Emperor". It's very sad that the Revolutionary Army's cause is bolstered at the expense of the life of one of the few decent rulers in the world, and paints everyone that supports them as Dramatically Missing the Point.

    Egghead Arc 
  • Chapter 1058:
    • As it turns out, Sabo's fellow Revolutionaries don't have a clue about whether or not he actually killed Cobra. Dragon is even silently irate about this, swearing to Koala that if Sabo really did it, then he will never forgive him regardless of the reason. And considering Dragon saved Sabo's life all those years ago, that's a painful statement...
    • Meanwhile, Kuma has indeed been rescued and brought to Kamabakka Queendom, but his mind's still roboticized from Vegapunk's work. All Dragon can get out of him is an automated answer. Koala has visible tears in her eye while watching this interaction.
  • Chapter 1059:
    • We see the aftermath of the attack on Amazon Lily and the island is nearly in ruins by the Marines and Blackbeards attack. If not for Rayleigh's intervention, Hancock would likely have died and her people would have been captured or worse.
    • Just the fact that Hancock, who's been so bold and confident with herself, is left visibly worried over the whole affair. Even worse is that she is so worried for her people to the point she mentions to her family that the only way that they can protect themselves is if she leaves the island knowing the Marines are only after her. And to top it off is that she has no idea where to go, unless she can somehow find Luffy and reunite with him.
  • Chapter 1060:
    • Upon hearing about the news of Nefeltari Cobra's death, Luffy is aghast that Sabo has been accused of murdering him, stating his brother would never do a thing like that. Adding to that, the Straw Hats who personally knew Vivi are all visibly upset that she's missing (except for Zoro who remains practical). It gets to the point that Luffy wants to put the voyage on hold and head back to Alabasta!
    • The destruction of Lulusia Kingdom is equal parts horrifying and tragic. Setting aside Sabo's unknown fate, which itself is a tearjerker, but this was a kingdom that had been seen several times over the course of the manga, between Ace's cover story arc and during the introduction of the Revolutionary Commanders, so there's a certain investment in its citizens (especially Moda the milk-maid) who have suddenly been erased and treated like they never existed.
      • Thankfully, this is mitigated somewhat in Chapter 1082, where it's revealed that both Sabo and some of Lulusia's citizens (including Moda), survived the kingdom's destruction by being out at sea at the time. But again, only some of Lulusia's citizens survived.
  • Chapter 1063: Just as Luffy is about to attack a Pacifista, he's interrupted by Bonney. When asked why she did that, she can only tearfully beg that they not hurt her father.
    Bonney: I'm begging you! Please don't hurt... my daddy!
  • Chapter 1074
    • We are treated to a glimpse of Kuma's past, and it is harsh. Seeing Kuma as a child, crying and begging for help as he's beaten senseless for escaping a hellhole is hard to watch, and Bonney's horrified reactions make it worse.
    • It turns out that Kuma was a slave of the Celestial Dragons who are shown as silhouettes within Kuma's memories witnessed by an upset Bonney. He was their slave as a human in the past and a slave again after being converted as the original Pacifista that they would toy around as they please.
  • Chapter 1078:
    • Vegapunk's betrayal at the hands of York just to curry favor with the Celestial Dragons. The doctor is horrified and saddened on why one of his satellites would ever join a group of prolapsed assholes that kidnap and enslave people, have anyone shot or sicced on by a Marine Admiral just for looking at them the wrong way, created the monster that was Donquixote Doflamingo via their actions and influence, and indirectly have pirates exist in the first place.
    • While it's only a brief glimpse, we see Bonney once more after another drive into Kuma's memories, and whatever she saw has clearly driven her to bawling despair.
  • Chapter 1082:
    • Vice-Admiral T-Bone is revealed to have been Killed Offscreen for the bounty on his head set by the Cross Guild. Even though he only got a minimum amount of screentime during the Water 7 arc, he was shown to be a decent Marine, making him one of the few Token Good Teammates among them and his death completely undeserving.
    • Buggy’s abuse by Mihawk and Crocodile. While it was Black Comedy beforehand, it is disheartening to see him literally hung on a hook in an implied torture room- completely disrespected behind the scenes by his Co-Dragons for a mistake he was unable to control.
      • It leads to Buggy admitting- after calling out Crocodile and Mihawk for their small ambitions not being worthy of pirates- that he really has a grudge towards Shanks and that he knew that Shanks was the prodigy that would be chosen as Roger’s successor while he was outclassed in every area and that he would follow him if he decided to find Laugh Tale. When Shanks says he doesn’t want to go after One Piece yet, Buggy feels like this is a complete betrayal of Roger’s wishes and expectations. So he leaves while lying it’s due to the treasure map.
    • When he hears that Shanks is going after the One Piece, Buggy admits he’s stumbled into his position by luck but wants to be Pirate King to show he deserves the position, he can fulfill his promise with Shanks, and make Roger proud. With tears in his eyes as he speaks earnestly. Mihawk and Crocodile proceed to beat him up for even trying to speak up for himself.
  • Chapter 1086:
    • The Nefeltari family's retainers desperately search for their King and Princess, and their efforts are only met with indifference by the other royals.
    • The execution of Saint Mjosgard by Figarland Garling is one. He was proof, alongside the majority of his family, that it was possible for Celestial Dragons to be decent people if they were willing to change, but the absolute moral bankruptcy and corruption of the World Nobles ultimately meant that any attempt to truly change from within is near impossible. About the only good thing that comes out of this is that he at least died protecting the loved ones of the woman who gave him a chance, Otohime.
  • Chapter 1090: While everyone takes a moment to lick their wounds, Lilith mournfully weeps for Pythagoras and Shaka. Yes, even for Shaka.
  • Chapter 1095: The chapter is not titled "A world where you're better off dead" for nothing. We learn that Kuma is a descendant of the lost Buccaneer clan, a clan who, having committed a "grave crime" in the past, became a family of slaves. When the World Government heard of this, they sacked his hometown and made Kuma and his family slaves, despite the desperate pleas of his father. Kuma's life was one of tragedy. He was beaten, berated, and overworked by the Celestial Dragons who treated him like a thing than a person. One day, his mother died, and his father tearfully admitted that she is better off in Heaven than suffering as a slave. His father tried to keep his son's hopes up by telling him stories of Nika, the Warrior of Liberation. However, when he tried to cheer Kuma up by singing the Drums of Liberation, he's coldly shot dead by a Celestial Dragon for being too loud. Right in front of Kuma. And this was all Kuma knew of the world since he was four. How the hell the poor guy stayed sane, let alone willingly subjected himself to becoming a slave to the World Government in body and mind in his later life, is practically incomprehensible. It certainly explains the lengths the Revolutionaries went through to save him during the Reverie understandable, aware of his past suffering....and further emphasises the tragedy of all that coming to naught with Kuma's mad charge to some unknown destination.
  • Chapter 1096:
    • When the population extermination tournament at God Valley begins, all its terrified and sobbing citizens are forced to run for their lives like animals, unable to believe the World Nobles could inflict such cruelty upon their fellow man, with not even the children being spared, all the while the Nobles are treating the whole thing like a fun and exciting event. Even worse, according to Ivankov, the World Nobles tell their victims that if they manage to survive until the tournament is over, they'll be allowed to live, but are actually lying to fill them with false hope in order to make them more sporting prey; in truth the Nobles have never left anyone alive in the extermination tournaments.
    • It's difficult to convey just how upsetting the sights are at God Valley once the Celestial Dragons have begun their Native Hunt. The first thing we see is a large panel featuring dozens of men, women and children screaming and crying struggling to get away. Begging the Nobles to stop or at least asking why. Not too long after, we see another panel of St. Garling graphically beheading a man, leaving nothing but a bloody stump. All the while, the dialogue from the World Nobles and the God's Knights juxtaposes the context of events by being as cheery as you'd expect from bloodthirsty hedonists. The most despairing part of all this is that it's happened an innumerable amount of times in the past and has never been stopped before now.
    • As we learn more about Kuma's past, we learn of just how great a person he was. The reason he has the Paw-Paw Fruit is because he offered himself up to go after it since he figured he'd had the best chance of survival and didn't want anyone else to die in the attempt to claim it. When face-to-face with Saturn, he calls him out on the cruelty and unfairness of the world and declares his dream to be like Nika and help the oppressed. During the God Valley Incident, he helped save the lives of five hundred innocent people that were caught in the crossfire by helping them escape, then went to a church to pray and castigate himself for not saving more. Even something as minor as Ginny beating up a pair kids for picking on him sees him stopping her and healing the kids of their pain while apologizing on her behalf! Every single instance shows he was someone that was far too good for this world, which makes the knowledge of his inevitable fate even worse. What's even worse is that Kuma wishing he had saved more people isn't unreasonable considering the context. While five hundred sounds like a lot, there were one-hundred thousand people being hunted at God Valley. Five hundred souls are a drop in the bucket by comparison.
    • About Ginny herself: while holing up in their new house, Kuma cooks his new friend a full meal, giving her part of his own food teasingly calling her a glutton. Ginny answers by crying of happiness and confessing that, as a slave girl, she was never fed properly in her entire life up to that moment. Kuma ends up bawling and crying his eyes out, begging her to smile again.
  • Chapter 1097:
    • It's revealed that after taking away the pain of the people who visit his church, Kuma would take on the pain himself, because otherwise it would go back to them. More than that, he used to do this every week. Not only does it prove how unfailingly selfless he was, it puts his deal with Zoro all the way back in the Thriller Bark arc into an entirely new context.
    • Despite truly loving Ginny back, Kuma can't bring himself to marry her and let himself be happy with her, for fear that what happened to his parents would happen to them as well. It's implied that Ginny knows this, which is why she calls him a "dummy" at the end of the scene for rejecting her marriage proposal.
  • Chapter 1098:
    • Ginny had been captured by the World Government for two years, leading the Gentle Giant Kuma to become uncharacteristically brutal in his missions, due to the emotional stress that the uncertainty of her fate is causing him.
      • The Revolutionaries then get a call from Ginny to tell them that she's going back to the Sorbet Kingdom and to not see her in her current state — just to remember her as she was. Kuma, finally getting confirmation of her survival, leaves in a hurry just as she says she's loved him and always will. Worse yet, it's indicated that Kuma didn't hear her last words due to leaving before she spoke.
      • Ginny's expression on the Den Den Mushi is absolutely heartbreaking. Her normal cheerful spirit is completely gone, and she can only form a bitter smile as she gives Kuma a Dying Declaration of Love and gets ready to die. The poor girl is completely done with life. One can only imagine what sort of unspeakable horrors she went through during her time as a Celestial Dragon's "wife".
    • Then Kuma finds her corpse and the revelation of what monstrous acts occurred is heavily implied. Ginny, having been taken in by the World Government to satisfy the desires of one World Noble, became one of his concubines with the nasty implications that come with it, before being tossed aside due to catching the rare disease called Sapphire Scale, which causes sapphire scales to grow on the body when exposed to natural light. Even if you avoid light, death is inevitable... And yet, given that it allowed her a few days of freedom and the chance to take her child away from the World Nobles, it's heavily implied that Ginny was grateful for the disease despite the cost.
      • Ginny's death is made all the more heartbreaking by the cruel Irony of it all. Kuma genuinely loved Ginny, but avoided marrying her out of fear that she would be persecuted for marrying someone with "Buccaneer Blood" only for her to end up dying anyway. And worse still, her daughter would later contract the same disease that claimed her life. Poor guy just can't win.
    • In spite of this, Kuma loves Bonney as if she were his own daughter, but she eventually captures the same disease as her mother — forcing her to be kept in the boarded-up church for her safety, with doctors telling her that even with the precautions, she'd still die before ten. Bonney mishears this as this meaning she'll eventually be cured.
      • When playing with Bonney, Kuma asks her, "If we went on a trip, where would you like to go?" Kuma's iconic catch phrase now takes on a whole new tragic meaning.
  • Chapter 1099:
    • Vegapunk wanted the Pacifista to be heroes of the people, defending others from pirates. He even named them in Kuma's honor after the man described himself as a pacifist, but Saturn insisted they were only valuable based on how many people they could kill.
    • Kuma spent years traveling the world trying to find a cure for Bonney and eventually made a deal with Vegapunk to be the basis of the Pacifista warriors in exchange for curing his adoptive daughter.
  • Chapter 1100:
    • As Kuma listens to the heartless Saint Garcia Saturn lay down the terms for Vegapunk healing Bonney, his face is obscured by his hands seemingly crying. He listens as Saint Saturn tells him than in order for Bonney to be cured, he will need to become a Warlord, the very antithesis of what he fought for all these years, he will need to become a Full-Conversion Cyborg and he will need to surrender his will to the World Government. When Vegapunk hears the last part, he loudly objects but then Kuma interrupts him and tell him that it's okay. We then see that he is crying Tears of Joy, happy that the only price he will have to pay for curing Bonney is his own life. Kuma really was a man Too Good for This Sinful Earth.
    • The time Kuma and Bonney spend with Kizaru, Vegapunk and Sentomaru while they are being "treated" on Egghead. Bonney is shown drawing a goofy picture of Kuma, Sentomaru is shown playing "horse" with Bonney and all five of them, Kizaru included, are shown sharing a pizza and dancing merrily to the tune of the "Nika Dance". It's clear that they all got closer during that time. Which makes Kizaru fighting Sentomaru and attempting to kill Vegapunk on orders of the World Goverment all the more heartbreaking.
    • Kuma's final meeting with Bonney. He knows this is the last time he will get to see her, but she doesn't. Not wanting to break her heart he gives her an Empty Promise that he will come back to find her and take her on a vacation once he goes away for a year, knowing full well that he will be dead by then. The Department of Child Disservices appointed by the World Government then show up, separates the two and makes it very clear to Kuma what will happen to Bonney if he ever goes back on his word. He quickly gets the point and agrees to leave, but not before imparting some final touching words to Bonney.
      Kuma: Thank you Bonney... Thank you for being born.
    • And then there's the fact that, as a Warlord, Kuma uses the painting Bonney drew of him on Egghead as his Jolly Roger. All the poor man ever wanted was to be a loving father to his daughter and the World Government didn't even allow him to spend his final moments with her.
  • Chapter 1101:
    • In a flashback, Kuma revealed that he saw Dragon going off the outskirts of Goa Kingdom to visit a young boy (Luffy), leading to Dragon indirectly confirming that Luffy is his son before telling Kuma to end the discussion unless he wants to get Dragon killed, adding that "children are a vulnerability to any parent." While it's mixed with Heartwarming due to confirming that Dragon does indeed love Luffy and has been secretly visiting him, the sadness comes from Dragon's melancholic expression when revealing this to Kuma; as it shows, he deeply regrets and is in pain over abandoning his son and not getting to interact with him, yet knows that he would have put Luffy in danger and that he's safer being raised far away from him.
      • Also during the flashback, Kuma secretly spied on Luffy while he was training for his eventually voyage, and heard him say that he had to be strong in order to protect his future crewmates and vow to not lose a single one. This puts a new perspective on the events of Sabaody, as it means that Kuma, the one responsible for the Straw Hats being separated, knew exactly what he was putting Luffy through at the time.
    • Kuma would write at least ten letters a month to Bonney, telling her about the wonders of the world and letting her know how much he loves her. Not a single letter would reach her, however; Alpha contemptuously tore up every last one. By her ninth birthday, Bonney would cry at her father "breaking his promise". Though she was surrounded by friends who loved her, she was robbed of the love from the one person she cared about the most.
    • There's not even an indication that Alpha thought the letters contained a secret message or such towards Bonney: she merely tore them up out of spite towards the little girl for having to "babysit" her, as attested to by her feeding her bitter syrup under the guise of it being medicine, just to make her uncomfortable. As persistent as Kuma was in trying to show his love for Bonney, Alpha was equally persistent in denying any show of this love being given to her. The fact she relishes in Bonney's escape attempt because it means she can do away with the pretense and just use nonlethal violence (with her friends on board being exempted from that "nonlethal" bit) to subdue her and bring Bonney to "justice" is a reminder that assholes like Alpha were and still are part of the World Government that so oppresses the civilians of the One Piece world whilst still being deluded that they're the good guys... or just taking any and every excuse they can to abuse their power For the Evulz.
  • Chapter 1102:
    • The reason Bonney placed the piercing on the place her sapphire scale jewels used to be was because she feared that Kuma might not be able to recognize her if he came across her. The poor girl thought that Kuma had forgotten her. Meanwhile, unbeknownst to her, not only did Kuma not forget her, he stole glimpses of her whenever he could because he had to honour his deal with Saint Saturn in order to keep her from being enslaved, but missed her far too much to stay away indefinitely.
    • Vegapunk tries to bargain with Elder Saturn on ways for Kuma to keep even a bit of his consciousness, only to be rebuffed by the inflexible Saturn, who makes it very clear that he wants Kuma dead and his body enslaved as a twisted puppet to the will of the World Government. He even brings up his own scientific acumen in contrast to Vegapunk's attempts to use his knowledge to find a way to preserve Kuma's consciousness, even via means of a Flip Personality, making it clear that he will know if Vegapunk has done any such thing to try and save Kuma from his fate, and will not tolerate it.
    • Kuma’s last moments. There is really no way a few simple paragraphs on this website can do justice to the sheer emotional devastation Oda unleashes during this chapter’s final pages. It is really something that needs to be experienced directly. Nevertheless, we will try:
      • After handing Vegapunk a copy of his memories, Kuma lies down on the machine that will erase his personality with a huge smile on his face, completely at peace with what is about to happen as he loudly wonders how much of a nuisance he was in life. Vegapunk attempts to make a joke about life being nothing without a bit nuisance. A heartbreaking Really Dead Montage is then shown wherein Kuma is shown running in various stages of his life as he sees the faces of all the important people in his life. First his parents, then Ivankov, then Ginny, then Dragon, then Gyogyo & Tots, then the adult version Ginny the last time he saw her alive in the Revolutionary Army (the image of him running showing the ground becoming all rocky and jagged as he seems about to fall over, showing just how badly her loss affected him that he nearly gave up) then the image of his beloved Bonney (with the ground flattening out once more, showing how she gave him a reason to live on) and finally Vegapunk. Kuma is finally shown running towards the light as we cut back to Vegapunk who is about to activate the machine. Vegapunk completely breaks down in tears and tells Kuma that his life did not cause anyone any harm but his death will devastate everyone who loves him. As the machine activates the people residing in Egghead pray for Kuma’s soul, Sentomaru is having a Moment of Silence and Vegapunk slouches down screaming, absolutely devastated by Kuma’s loss. When Kuma, next opens his eyes, they are completely devoid of life. The man we came to know over the past few chapters is now completely gone and a soulless Full-Conversion Cyborg stands in his place.
      • Vegapunk’s point of view is especially painful. He has clearly grown to care deeply about this extraordinary selfless individual that he was tasked with turning into a Full-Conversion Cyborg by the World Government. In the two years they have known each other, the two developed a very deep and meaningful relationship, being each other’s Best Friend and confidante, with Kuma having trusted Vegapunk with the secret of Luffy's true parentage before Marineford, despite being aware of how seriously Dragon treated it. After failing to get a Last-Minute Reprieve in the form of a Flip Personality switch from Saint Saturn, Vegapunk is forced against his will to kill a man he deeply respects and the experience completely destroys him, exemplified by the distraught look on his face and his violent crying. His parting words to Kuma are especially heart-wrenching:
        Vegapunk: Your death will be a nuisance… To every person who has ever known and loved you. Listen to me Kuma and listen good. You are a hero!!! To Bonney!!! And to us all!!!
      • And then, there’s Bonney, poor Bonney, who after touching the Paw Bubble containing Kuma’s memories finally learned the extent of her father’s love for her and the ultimate sacrifice he made to save her life. The final words Kuma told Vegapunk echo in her head as the tears keep flowing from her face and she screams her heart out.
        Kuma: Tell her I wish her a very happy tenth birthday.
  • Chapter 1104: After searching for him for so long Bonney finally reconnects with her father, Kuma, and she tells him a few kind words about how wonderful her mother was and how kind she thinks he is. And then Kuma gives her a big but delicate hug and completely stops moving. Kuma is gone again.
  • Chapter 1105: Dr Vegapunk pleads with Saturn and Kizaru to please call off the Buster Call ordered in the previous chapter saying that there is no need to destroy his work along with his life and that there are so many things present in Egghead that can benefit humanity. Saturn coldly replies that there is no need for humanity to progress and tells Vegapunk that he ordered the destruction of the civilian evacuation ship containing Egghead's unarmed residents just in case someone who knows something is also there. The Buster Call commences and Vegapunk sadly watches in a Knee Fold Fall of Defeat as everything he created, all the scientific wonders that amazed everyone in the previous chapters, gets wiped out by the Navy's military might.
  • Chapter 1108: Vegapunk dies, shot through the back by Kizaru after getting impaled previously by Saint Saturn. And while he has a lot of very questionable actions under his belt, Vegapunk wasn't a bad man deep down and wanted to help the world.
  • Chapter 1111: Kizaru is clearly broken up by killing Vegapunk. He was Just Following Orders - or at least that's what he's telling himself - but either way, it's clear that he, for the first time in the series, isn't as stoic as he wants to be and can't just shrug off what he did.
    Marines: Kizaru!! Show us your wounds! let us help you!!
    Kizaru: Am I wounded? Yes... Deeply wounded...
    Marines: Then we should act fast!
    Kizaru: Just let me rest...


  • Movie 6. Though it combines a heavy dose of horror, one scene is also a heavy Tear Jerker. During the scene where the Straw Hats are absorbed one by one into the giant flower while the villain casually announces their deaths, while pinning Luffy to a rock and asking him doesn't he want to save his friends? Luffy starts to break down as he thinks everyone is dead. His reaction to Zoro's apparent death is the worst. Then after he's freed and taken into hiding, he has his Heroic BSoD, only snapping out of it when he hears from one character that his crew is still alive and calling out for him. The ending also brings on the Tears of Joy.
    • Also in movie 6, it's revealed that the Baron killed Brief's entire crew in front of him. After Brief states that Luffy is not alone, and that he is his friend, the Baron makes fun of him, asking Luffy "Why would you let such a pathetic insect be your friend?" while attacking him. Luffy saves him, and yells "I told you I wouldn't let you hurt my friends!" then gives Brief the tobihige salute. Brief bursts into tears while returning the salute. Considering he's been alone on that island for a long time (he build a huge underground system on the whole island!) this is probably the first time he's had any friends since his crew was killed.
    • The reason why Baron became the movie's Big Bad. He was a former pirate captain who was just like Luffy in his heyday and also had a crew who he considered his friends. One day, his ship ran into a terrible storm that only Baron survived, while his entire crew drowned. He later washed up on a strange island, where the Lilly Carnation resided. Driven completely mad by years of guilt and loneliness, he makes a deal with Lilly to bring back his dead friends (or at least create facsimiles of them) in return for feeding Lilly strong pirates. His actions were monstrous enough to warrant a Karmic Death from Luffy, yes, but he has one of the most horrifying and tragic backstories that we've ever seen in a OP villain. For extra bonus points, due to being extremely similar, it's implied that Luffy had the potential to become someone like Baron if the Straw Hats were to die.
      • Hell, seeing the Straw Hats at each other's throats is just as unnerving. Though the deepest moment is when the remaining members notice Chopper, Robin & Usopp missing when the film takes a darker turn. Sanji takes a step further by blaming Luffy for everything. This made Luffy too depressed to even help Nami when the Baron sends his goons after her, Sanji and Zoro.
  • The ending of Z, in which the Big Bad of the movie, Zephyr, stands alone against a rather massive Marine force lead by Kizaru while Ain bangs helplessly against the ice wall made by Kuzan to block the Marines from Ain, Binz, and the Straw Hats and give Zephyr, in his own words, a place to die. It then goes into a flashback of a younger, more idealistic Zephyr standing against bullies with a log tied to his arm as a weapon, a helmet with a stylized Z on the front, and a cape.
    • The Marines apparently found it a Tearjerker too. Given the face of all the vice-admirals there, none of them are too happy about this mission, as at least one was shown to tear up as they faced the man who trained them.
  • Film Gold has one for Gild Tesoro, revealed in fragments of his past, which also explain why he never wears a gold ring on his ring finger while the rest are occupied. He grew up with an abusive alcoholic single mother, flat broke, who hated his innocent dream of singing given the hopeless circumstances in front of them. At some point, he ended up by himself, still broke, but met a woman named Stella kept inside a slave shop. He fell in love with her because she complimented his singing and strove to make enough to buy her freedom, but just before he finally earned enough to purchase it, a Celestial Dragon bought her, and he got so upset at the thought of losing Stella that the Celestial Dragon also bought him out of spite. The Celestial Dragon was so abusive to Stella that he eventually killed her and she died in front of Tesoro. Shortly afterwards, Fisher Tiger led his rebellion on Mariejois and sacked the holy nation, releasing many of its slaves, Tesoro among them. During this siege, Tesoro found, stole, and ate one of the treasures in the kingdom, the Gol-Gol Fruit, using it to take revenge on the world. Finally, he took a giant star brand and seared out his slave brand with his own marking just like the Sun Pirates did with theirs, and began a criminal enterprise of gaining enough money to never be put into a position of powerlessness again, and playing with people's lives as toys of his twisted entertainment, ultimately just like his mother, except Drunk on the Dark Side. Finally, just to round out his fall from grace, he began doing business with Donquixote Doflamingo, who himself owed his hatred and world-hating nature to the Celestial Dragons, only Tesoro was so obsessed with money at this point he saw him as a rival to crush rather than an ally and praised the Straw Hats for bringing him down for him.
  • Stampede, while mostly just fun, has an unexpected moment where Sabo asks Ann, whose Devil Fruit ability is image projection, to project a specific person while handing her a piece of paper. It then cuts to Luffy glancing back at the ship Sabo's on and looking shocked for a moment before he starts beaming. When it cuts back to the ship, it turns out that Ann's used her powers to project Ace, standing back-to-back with Sabo, fire from the Flame-Flame Fruit surrounding both of them as if Ace was there with him.

    In General 
  • What about Nami and Franky's backstories? Come to think of it, the childhoods of Luffy, Sanji and Zoro were no picnic either.
    • Luffy probably had the nicest childhood, seeing as back then he still had Ace, Sabo, and Garp. Aside from never knowing who his real parents were, the only real tragedy he encountered was Shanks losing his arm.
      • Well, although now it's been revealed that he lost quite a bit in his childhood as well, Sabo (though he reunites with him) and now Ace in the present. Irony has never been a bigger bitch.
    • Nami and her sister, Nojiko, were found during the war by a young woman named Bellemere; she, in all of her colonel badassery, raised the kids in a poor family, but a relatively happy one. One day, Arlong came and demanded each person pay a ransom. Bellemere didn't have enough money, so after kicking open the door and having a shotgun placed down Arlong's throat, she told him to suck it. Then, she let herself be shot after she gave up her life so Nami and Nojiko could live instead.
      • The thing is, she had enough money to pay for either herself or her two kids. Since she adopted Nami and Nojiko as babies during war, they weren't on file anywhere so she could have hidden them and paid for herself. But she didn't. You know why? Because her love for them was so deep, she would rather have died than pretend for even a moment that her children didn't exist. That, and the whole scene where she disciplined Nami for saying Nojiko isn't her real sister really made it that much more sad.
    • Nami's tears of gratitude when Luffy destroys the room Arlong forced her to work in at Arlong Park. And, of course...
      Luffy: NAMI, YOU'RE ONE OF US NOW!
    • Franky's backstory: Franky never really showed how much he actually cared for the closest thing to a family he had, until Tom was taken away. Franky desperately tried to stop it, only to almost get killed in the process. So tragic.
      Franky: Stop, Puffing Tom! Where the hell do you think you're taking your creator to?!
  • Someone here mentioned it and once they did, it really struck home. Zoro never really did had anyone who genuinely loved him when he was younger. He wasn't seen with any parents and his relationship with his sensei wasn't seen to be overly close or anything like that, just a simple student/teacher mutuality. His rival Kuina could be identified as a friend of his. And then, she died by falling off the stairs. And he wasn't seen having any friends after that or being close with anyone (since everyone was absolutely terrified of him) until he met with Johnny and Yosaku and later on, the little girl Rika and Luffy.
    • We see that Luffy had Ace, Makino, the Mayor, several villagers, Shanks, Garp with his well intentions and possibly Dadan. Nami was cared for by Bellemere, Nojiko, Gen and other villagers. Sanji had Zeff and the other cooks, though their relationship appeared to be all insults and hate, though when Sanji was about to leave, they all broke down into tears and wished him the best. Chopper had Doctor Hiriluk and Doctor Kureha. Robin had Professor Clover, Saul and for a brief while, her mother. Franky had Tom, Iceburg, Kokoro and Yokozuna. Brook had his crew and Laboon. All the rest of the Straw Hats' family and friends showed that they loved them in some way or another, even if some of them died.
    • It's also especially sad for Kuina. Many of the other loved ones had died in a sacrifice to save the future Straw Hat (Bellemere and Saul, which is also how Zeff and Shanks lost their limbs), content that their dream has been or would be fulfilled (Hiruluk and Tom), or with some semblance of happiness or satisfaction (Brook's pirates died singing a song for Brook to deliver to Laboon, while Olvia noted that Robin was still able to call her "mother"). Kuina died a sudden death without fulfilling her dream of becoming the world's greatest swords-woman, and Zoro's more emotional reaction at her wake in the manga is especially tragic.
      • It's even worse when you realize most of what Zoro got out of his relationship with Kuina was a great deal of pain (both physical and emotional) and derision. The only explanation is that he was honestly THAT lonely for any sort of meaningful contact with another human being. Dear God. If you've read the past few paragraphs and don't come out of it with unprecedented levels of soul crushing sadness and compassion for the big guy, you are a heartless monster.
      • Except that, at least in the manga, it's implied that the other students like Zoro, cheering him on while insulting Kuina, his master is shown just as close with Zoro as he is with Kuina, we aren't show anything from Kuina's death to Zoro becoming a Pirate Hunter and while we don't hear about his parents, we've never heard of Luffy's and Ace's families until it became a plot point. The real tearjerker here is Kuina; every other student hated her or feared her superior abilities, blaming her skills on the fact that her father is the master rather than because she worked hard for them, her father tell her point blank that her dream of being the best swordsman in the world is impossible due to her gender (proving that he didn't give her any special treatment training-wise) and when she finally rejects her father's words with the help of her only friend... she falls down some stairs and dies.
  • Usopp's backstory is a monster of sadness. At first, he had two loving, caring parents. Then, some time after his birth, probably not very long, his father joined Shanks's pirate crew. From then on, he lived happily with his mother in their peaceful village, her telling him about his brave and noble father, the pirate. Then she fell ill with a deadly disease. And then, just before he watches her die, he tells her his first lie, about how his father and Shanks are coming back with a cure to the disease. From then on, every morning he runs through the village screaming "Pirates are coming! Pirates are coming!" For probably upwards of ten years he lived on his own with only one person in the village who cared about him, a bedridden girl who he told fantastic stories every day. Every other person in the village hates him. Even Luffy had better than that.
    • It's later shown that when he runs away to be a pirate, the villagers really miss chasing him around, so he was actually really appreciated. Adorably, Pepper, Carrot, and Onion fulfill the role Usopp left behind as the new village liars.
  • Say what you want about her, but Boa Hancock describing her past indisputably counts as this, especially if the ones who turned her from no different than the innocent Kuja children to a cold-hearted bitch was none other than the Celestial Dragons: the same royal assholes who were responsible for the example above. To make this clear, in her childhood, Hancock as well as her sisters were kidnapped, sold into slavery, had tattoos forcibly burnt onto their backs, and experienced a living hell for four years in Mariejois, until a Fish-man so badass he climbed the ten thousand feet above sea level Red Line with his bare hands into Mariejois, released every slave, Fish-man and human alike, despite his view that Humans Are Bastards, and set the city on fire after giving them the heads up to GTFO out of Mariejois. As if Hancock's experiences weren't traumatic enough at that young age without a heroic sociopath giving her a will to live the hard way. Also simply remembering all this, makes Hancock and her sisters cry, Hancock in particular tremble at reliving that again, and Sonia suffering a Heroic BSoD at the memories. When Hancock reveals this as the reason she can never show any signs of weakness to anyone, for she has a great fear she'll go through being taken advantage of again, Elder Nyon sees her icy heart is starting to warm up a bit because of Luffy. And despite continuing the facade to Nyon, Luffy sees that neither Hancock nor her sisters are the monsters, but the Celestial Dragons are without a doubt for doing that to them, and turning them that way.
    • And this gets EVEN WORSE when it's revealed that Fisher Tiger himself was actually enslaved too, during that time.
    • In the anime, specifically inside this flashback, we get the scene in which the young Hancock and her sisters get their brands. First there's the branding instruments, then the Boa children huddling together in horror, and then there's young Hancock screaming and crying in pain as she gets the brand first... Come to think of it, the scenes with the Gorgon sisters's past were already sad in the manga, but the anime was more detailed and made them work real well.
  • The whole last 100+ chapters. It shouldn't be physically possible to feel this sad.
    • More like the whole entire manga so far. Despite the cartoony art and quirky characters, the characters' development, feelings, and reasons for their thoughts and behaviors are just, to put it bluntly, painfully emotionally and psychologically realistic like one wouldn't believe from such a happy-go-lucky series, making it all the more depressing. Many, many seemingly unimportant lines, scenes, or odd traits become Harsher in Hindsight when you put them in context with the effect the characters' utterly agonizing backstories had on them and their ability to relate to other people. After that, it's sometimes very hard to get involved with the coolness and badassery when you're constantly distracted by your desire to wrap the main characters up in warm blankies and give them cookies and milk.
  • Opening 13. Especialy when you read the lyrics, and know what happens to Ace.
    • To put it in perspective, it's usually a good indicator of a Tear Jerker if simply watching the opening makes you start to tear up...
  • The chapter page of Chapter 596 was a bad one; it showed grown-up Ace, Luffy and Sabo in a dynamic pose of awesomeness. This is sad because Ace is dead, and Sabo is believed dead for years. It's never going to happen and it never was going to — even with Luffy and Sabo alive, Ace remains dead.
    • Made even worse if you notice that in that page Ace's tattoo doesn´t have the crossed out S.
  • Ace's tattoo has a crossed out S on his arm. It looks like the tattooist just had done lousy spelling. Later chapters have revealed that Ace and Luffy's apparently dead 'brother' Sabo was a pirate in waiting like them, and his flag was a crossed-out S, made right before he died. Ace kept Sabo's dream alive on his very skin. And didn't live to find out that Sabo actually survived.
  • The chapter page of Chapter 597 shows Whitebeard and Gold Roger standing back to back like the badasses they are. Of course, they're both dead.
  • The song Dakishimete, which literally means "Hug me". Of course, Chopper.
  • The 14th opening, Fight Together. Especially when you get to the second half. It's part epic, part fond memories.
    • The intro was very heartwarming as it goes through its course, but then it shows Ace's spirit nudge Luffy closer to his straw hat.
    • Another aspect of the open: After everything that happened, Luffy is standing there looking at his straw hat and appearing very solemn and serious, reflecting how everyone's wondering if he'll ever be the same. After Ace's push, Luffy grabs the hat and puts it on... then quickly flashes that mischievous grin, letting everyone know that he's gonna be just fine.
    • The main aspect of the open is the bonds between the crew. You witness every single member's most intimate moments with Luffy, and after everything that has happened, from the separation to Ace's death, and as you see Luffy flash that grin of his, you know that his love for his friends hasn't faded in the least; that no matter whatever gets in their way, no matter the burdens they carry, they will be together again... and they'll do whatever it takes to stay together, until the end.
  • Chapter 0 (tie-in to Strong World) really tugs at your heartstrings with the various flashbacks, each contained in a panel for about three pages straight. In showing order, it goes from Garp on vacation, playing with baby Ace like any cheery grandfather; little Kuina and how her mother had wished her to grow up to be a strong woman despite her father's doubts; Shanks beginning to assemble his crew, starting with Yasopp; the planning stages of the Going Merry; Bellemere back in her days as a Marine; Hiruluk running away after another botched appointment; kid Robin hiding from bounty hunters; Franky, Tom, and Iceburg on break while working on the Sea Train; Laboon calling for the Rumbar pirates while Brook is still stuck in the ghost ship as a living skeleton.
  • Rather old, but some dialogue analysis revealed a new Tear-Jerker: Right as Luffy leaves the Kuja Pirate ship and heads back to Sabaody, he tells Hancock that he never says goodbye to anyone because "I want to see you again, after all!" A quick re-look at an old chapter reveals this quote:
    Luffy: Goodbye, Usopp. it's been... fun.
    • So... Luffy in essence told Usopp that he wanted to never see him again back during the Water 7 arc?
    • No, it's that he never expected to see Usopp again after the Water 7 arc. He did after all battle him for the Going Merry, which was established was irreparably broken, and gave it to Usopp out of pity. Despite being him for an entire arc as Sogeking, he was genuinely surprised in the post-Enies Lobby arc to hear that not only did one of the crew see him, but he wanted to rejoin the crew.
    • If we're talking about harsher in hindsight... remember what Nami said when Arlong betrayed her and Luffy showed up? "Luffy... help me." Remember what Nami says when Kuma sends her away "Luffy, Help m—!"
  • Arlong killing Bellemere has a second layer of Tear Jerker upon the reveal about his ex-captain Fisher Tiger's continual wishes to not harm humans. Not only did he rob Nami of her mother but he also broke his promise to Tiger.
  • Any scene that has Unan and the Stone Storage Room is going to be a very heartbreaking moment. Heck, the song was introduced in a Movie about said pirate Unan being found dead in a storage room without a cent to his name, having returned all his treasure out of guilt and just locking himself in there to die.
  • Everything about Big Mom and her pirate crew/biological children. Most of Big Mom's kids are criminally insane, hedonistic, and sadistic just like their mother... save for a few like Moscato, Chiffon, Lola, and Praline, who are White Sheep when lumped in with the rest of their siblings. And with the reveal of Pudding and Chiffon's backstories, it's implied that most of Big Mom's children were fundamentally good people who were twisted and corrupted by Big Mom's teachings. None of them even intervene in situations of abuse whenever they happen, never helped Chiffon whenever she was beaten black and blue or protected Pudding from bullies because of an extremely petty disgust towards her third eye. Yet despite the heavy layers of dysfunction, they have a degree of familial love and will go apeshit if one of their siblings is harmed. The kicker is that Big Mom, as much of a monster as she is, got her parenting from her own Parental Substitutes, Streusen, her head cook, and Mother Carmel — both enabled her bad habits and behaviour until she became a person who acted on selfish whims and couldn't tell right from wrong (or cared to) without regard of consequences. Streusen eventually wised up and came to care for Big Mom/Linlin the longer he stayed in her service, but it was too little, too late by then.
  • Overall, compared to its slightly more cynical but still idealistic younger brothers Bleach and Naruto, One Piece is further towards the Idealism side of the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism... and yet this series manages to be a thousand times SADDER than the two combined by virtue of all these Tear Jerker moments being a million times WORSE, as the length of this entire page can attest you! No, really. There's absolutely no way to sugarcoat it. It seriously makes all of these aforementioned tear-jerkers all the more depressing.
    • It's likely that, because the author Eiichiro Oda himself has such a strong, positive world view, he has time and time again shown how he's able to confront such really, really ugly, painful, yet utterly human and poignant emotions like few others can (and done it all too well at that, in fact). It's clear Oda absolutely loves life, and wants to share this love with others. Just the fact that both Oda and his creation One Piece are creatures of such extremes are basically the reason why they're so emotionally endearing, dynamic and enthralling.

Want to feel better? Here y'go.