One Piece Author Oda Eiichiro Shares His Thoughts on Luffy and the End of the Series!

One Piece Author Oda Eiichiro Shares His Thoughts on Luffy and the End of the Series!

Internationally acclaimed pirate manga One Piece and its many fans recently celebrated its 21st anniversary. To mark the occasion, the Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun had a sit down with series author Oda Eiichiro to gain a little insight on the long-running fan favorite!

A question that's been on everyone's mind is just how long Luffy and the crew would continue on their journey, with 21 years and over 900 chapters already behind them. A story doesn’t just go on for years without reason, and in regards to this Oda commented on the persuasiveness of Luffy's story when turning newly defeated enemies into comrades joining him on his journey to become Pirate King. Although Luffy has already made nine close friends, it seems that Oda intends to see his original plan of gathering ten to the end, meaning that one more is still to come. As a result, the story is still "about 80% complete".

Oda was also asked about what the protagonist of his story meant to him. In a heartwarming answer, he described Luffy as his "ideal child", yet still with a mysterious quality about him. Despite being the aspiring Pirate King's creator, Oda asserts that it would instead be problematic if he did understand him perfectly, as readers would lose interest in the work.

Naturally, Yomiuri Shimbun also brought up the death of Luffy’s adopted older brother Ace. Oda stated that it truly worried him in that it was necessary for Luffy to progress, but the reaction from the audience was more than I could have ever imagined. Nevertheless, he added that "if the series was nothing but play and fun, it wouldn’t have come as far as it has.”

In regards to what Luffy's dream of becoming Pirate King means to him, Oda suggested that it was "living with the most freedom in the world." Although Luffy is constantly compelled to save others on his journey, this brings joy to those around him, as well as his creator and readers. According to Oda, "Someone who lives for other people has a warrior’s spirit, and it’s my hope that it’s passed down to the readers.”

Luckily for Oda, he’s had quite some time to pass down that warrior spirit into readers. One Piece was first serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump on Jul. 22, 1997 and quickly charmed readers with its wacky character designs and lovable protagonist. Named Monkey D. Luffy, his adventure begins when he leaves his home to find the legendary treasure One Piece and claim the title of Pirate King. Along the way, he begins to assemble a crew, though they typically only agree to join him after witnessing his commitment to helping those who need it, even when he doesn’t know them.

One Piece has spawned several anime films, an OVA, and an ongoing anime series that boasts over 845 episodes and counting. The franchise has also grown to include light novels, an upcoming live action drama series, and its own permanent theme park in Tokyo. Its Guinness World Record for becoming the series with the most copies published in the world is another testament to its continued success and support from fans around the globe.

All kinds of otaku are welcome at the TOM Fan Club! Join here: