Shanks and Buggy’s Real Plans
I just recently read the entire series over about 3 weeks and, like many people, have browsed social media for theories, explanations, and summaries. One recurring discussion that seems to take place is that of Buggy’s future and Shanks plans. To me, it’s rather obvious.
When the Roger Pirates came back after visiting Laugh Tale it was traumatic for several reasons for Shanks and Buggy. First, the imminent disbanding of the pirates meant these two were unlikely to get to Laugh Tale soon. Secondly, they were about to lose their father figure, a man that seemed invincible and became king of the pirates. As the only children of the Roger Pirates I think Roger made a very big request for the boys that each responded to very differently: He asked them to guide and support Joy Boy. Roger was obviously not going to live to see the prophetic child born and the rest of the pirates would all be quite old in the next era.
Shanks being the self-sacrificing type took that request as his life’s mission. He recovered the Nika fruit and knowingly or unknowingly gave it to the prophetic child, Luffy. He then lost his arm saving the boy, saved him again at Marineford, and is now protecting his allies as seen by his intervention between Wano’s defenders and Green Bull. Additionally, the reason he maintains distance from Luffy is that he believes that his constant involvement in Luffy’s struggles would impede his growth and beliefs. Children with huge expectations placed on them by others is genuine problem not only in fiction, but also in the real world. It may be hard for the fandom to have Shanks teased so much, but I think this is a man so dedicated to Roger, Luffy, and his mission that he will sacrifice his own happiness to see Luffy’s potential reached.
I think Buggy, on the other hand, took Roger’s request and death a lot harder. He became jaded and embittered with Roger’s request and thus became a colder and manipulative pirate. You can still see remnants of his good guy persona battling with who he’s become. I think eventually we are going to see Buggy have an identity crisis upon realizing that Luffy is Joy Boy’s reincarnation. I also believe that Buggy might be a “D” or at least an artificial one. The will of “D” has been described as “the uncanny ability to attract friends, allies, and even befriend former enemies or unexpected people”. If we look at his character arc, he’s constantly bringing groups of people together even when it’s unintentional.
It’s quite clear that this series will end with a giant conflict between Blackbeard and/or Imu and Luffy is going to need a giant allied fleet. He’s already going to have his Grand Fleet, but Shanks and Buggy, as his stewards, will have assembled their own grand fleets to help him free the world. Thanks for reading!