Well damn, Sabo was obliterated by the Tenryuubito as some people have guessed from last week. My optimism was shot down as it seems. Interestingly enough, the Tenryuubito’s unique head remarkably looks like the one Luffy punched.
Last week, I said that Ace’s philosophy of “never run” was a response to provocation, but this chapter explains that the true reason was for protecting Luffy. A flashback OF a flashback reveals that Roger also had this same trait as he lost many of his friends or family when he was young (which perhaps may be enlightened upon in the future). No surprise, Luffy also bears the same trait, as his “nakama” is the most important thing to him in his life. Based on Garp’s implication that Roger became the Pirate King because of this trait, Oda’s again trying to tell us or foreshadow that Luffy is on the right track (though he’s been doing this for ages, king’s haki, will of D, multiple traits of Roger’s). In my opinion, protecting your bonds is a good reason to fight and never gets old as a plot device. It gives the fights way more weight within them and thus create levels of epic that fights in other manga just don’t seem to ever achieve.
And so, the third brother disappears… we’ll never see him in the New World. However, in One Piece, no one ever dies until their grave is shown (or in flashba- ..oh wait). Sabo’s letter is the catalyst for the strength of Ace’s and Luffy’s bonds, and I feel their current strong connections are finally set in stone. However, even though the manga is taking a break next week, I don’t believe the flashback is over since there’s still some loose ends…
Note: Regarding the anime post, most of you probably notice I watch subs, and they’re especially late this week. I might just use Funisubs and cap the raws if Yibis is ever later than Tuesday from now on. The post may be done either tonight or tomorrow, depending on how the rest of my evening goes. Please excuse my incompetence this week 😛