10. Raizo vs Fukurokuju
I unironically love this fight. I know there has been a lot of meme-ing surrounding it, joking how it’s the most important fight.
Aniway seeing Raizo going from the guy complaining about the heat of the boiling pot as he is being held above by Oden to not saying a single word as he is being burned alive really hits me. Now that’s character progression, showing how much he has grown and how strong his determination is!
9- Nami vs Ulti
Nami’s fight didn’t bring much to the table. The moment she had with Ulti where she denounced her request and proclaimed Luffy will become the Pirate King was great and honestly the highlight of the fight but that alone can’t make me put her any higher as the fight itself is lackluster.
First, it gets mostly off-screened. Second, it’s Big Mom that does most of the job and third, it repeats the same beat from Whole Cake Island where Nami gets Zeus and does some serious damage. Nami activating her own “Motherly mode” was great as she strikes Ulti for attacking Tama and is another highlight of the fight that perfectly showcases Nami’s care when it comes to children. I just wish we got to see more of this.
The biggest issue with the fight is the fight itself because there isn’t much of it, it pretty much ends up being two or three attacks Nami land on Utli and that’s it. Her new ability with Zeus is really cool and the finisher was good but that’s all I can say about it.
I don’t know what I would have done to improve this fight, maybe give Nami the entirety of the credit for defeating Ulti and maybe show more of the fight. Other than that I don’t know, Nami was never a battle heavy character so it’s always hard to think about her in that way.
8- Franky vs Sasaki
All in all it’s a decent fight. The exchange of blows between the two is really good. I like seeing Franky use different weapons in his arsenal and I really enjoyed Sasaki’s fruit, especially the hybrid Triceracopter form. It’s drawn well, it’s choreographed well and I like how it ends with the destruction of General Franky. It really shows how strong Sasaki is, especially when fighting someone like Franky.
Now, there are 2 problems with this fight:
- It’s too short – It would have really benefited from an extra chapter. The idea behind the fight is that Franky was losing due to the Beasts Pirates numbers and once Tama tames them the tables turn (Try saying that five times), but we don’t get enough breathing time to fully take on this. That’s why I think an extra chapter would be perfect as it would fix this issue as well as give us some extra pages of Franky vs Sasaki.
- There really isn’t any narrative through-line, no character conflict. It’s just two guys fighting each other because they are an obstacle to one another. I liked the fan theory that Sasaki is Kokoro’s son and that the focus of the fight would be his (and Franky’s) relationship with her but that never came to fruition. I think something along those lines would have really elevated this fight on the level of Franky vs Senor Pink which still remains one of the best fights, not just Franky’s but overall best fights.
7- Jinbe vs Who’s Who
This fight suffers the same problem as Franky vs Sasaki. It desperately needs an extra chapter. The idea behind this fight is the same as the one with Franky’s – Jinbe is on the losing side due to the sheer number of Beasts Pirates and once Tama tames them the tables turn, but once again, there really isn’t any time for us to take this in.
It all happens so fast that the readers forgot this even happened. Not only that, but the general consensus online is that Jinbe had an easy time with Who’s Who which isn’t really the case.
The fight is really well choreographed and as a fan of Rokushiki I really enjoyed seeing it again in action and seeing all of the new moves unique to Who’s Who.
Not the biggest fan of Jinbe’s fighting style but it is enjoyable enough thanks to Who’s Who. However, what this fight has, that Franky’s lack, is the aforementioned narrative through-line. While not being anything special, the info dump that Who’s Who gets makes the fight more memorable than Franky vs Sasaki. This is its saving grace.
Oh and also, the final panel of Jinbe knocking Who’s Who out is one of my favorites.