One Piece: 10 controversies that split the fandom in half

One Piece fans often get heated about these arguments (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha/Viz Media/One Piece)
One Piece fans often get heated about these arguments (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha/Viz Media/One Piece)

The One Piece community has more than its fair share of fan outrages.

One Piece fans are very passionate about their favorite series. They are a vast community, which means not everybody will agree on a specific topic. Some discussions can be downright polarizing. It's elementary for insults to start flying left and right.

Due to recent events in the Wano Country arc, this article must include significant spoilers from the manga. Here's a look back at some very heated moments in the fanbase, some of which are still ongoing today.

Note: This article reflects the writer's personal views.

These One Piece moments were highly controversial with the community

10) Franky’s post-timeskip design

Franky's timeskip design might be the most controversial in the Straw Hat Pirates. The original look seemed more human, which made him look more appealing. His current design makes him look way too different from his classic form.

A few One Piece fans prefer the timeskip design simply because it captures Franky's character. He's a powerful cyborg that also needs to look the part. He has more power in his punches with those arms.

Unfortunately, his sleek pompadour was lost in the transition. At the very least, Franky can change his hairstyles at will.

9) Nico Robin’s change in skin color

When she was first introduced in Alabasta, Nico Robin had a noticeably darker skin tone. However, this changed after the One Piece timeskip. Some may argue that Robin got her tan from the desert. After spending a few years in a cold region, her skin color naturally became lighter.

However, a childhood flashback reveals that she already had a tan complexion, so that can't be the reason. Perhaps it's because the animation style changed after the timeskip. Either way, there are still unfortunate implications for "whitewashing."

Eiichiro Oda always intended for Robin to have a white skin tone. This is based on the colored images he did for the manga. During a One Piece SBS, her real-world nationality was also supposed to be Russian. Due to reasons that are still unknown, Toei Animation gave her a completely different look.

8) Sanji’s perversion


Sanji is often disliked for his deviant nature regarding women. It's not uncommon for him to get nosebleeds just by looking at them. Infamously enough, it even became a plot point on Fishman Island.

He underwent significant developments in Whole Cake Island, but he ultimately returned to his old ways soon afterward. Some fans were disappointed that Sanji would never change that aspect of his character.

There is a clear divide between fans who find him funny and those who don't. Supporters are willing to look past his flaws since he genuinely does care about women in his way.

7) Whitebeard versus Akainu


One Piece power scalers had a field day with this fight scene. Whitebeard completely manhandled Akainu in a short encounter. Of course, this only heated up debates between their power levels.

Yonko versus Admiral threads is extremely common in the One Piece community. One side argues that Whitebeard was stronger than Akainu, while others point out that Akainu got back up shortly afterward.

Either way, it's prevalent for Admirals to get downplayed because of this one scene, which isn't particularly fair to any of them.

6) "The raid will fail"


Mr. Morj is a One Piece theorist and prominent YouTuber. Throughout most of the Onigashima Raid, he believed that Luffy's forces would fail against Kaido and the Beast's Pirates.

For the past few years, fans have argued whether or not the raid would fail. Supporters believed that Eiichiro Oda would subvert expectations with a shocking twist. Meanwhile, detractors argued that if the Straw Hats failed, they would have no resources left for a second attempt.

Of course, the raid ended up being a massive success. Kaido was ultimately defeated in One Piece Chapter 1050. Marj's theory also became a running joke in a few circles. Nonetheless, it was the source of many heated discussions.

5) The Will of P.


Many One Piece characters have survived injuries that should've killed them otherwise. Coincidentally, their names often begin with the letter "P," hence the name Will of P:

  • Pell: survived a gigantic explosion (Alabasta)
  • Pagaya: survived a direct thunder strike from Enel (Skypiea)
  • Pound: survived a slash attack from Oven (Whole Cake Island)

Oda is known for rarely killing off characters in the One Piece series. Some like this approach since it makes the actual deaths meaningful. Others believe that certain moments would've been more impactful if the character had stayed dead, such as Pound sacrificing himself for his daughter.

Most fans accept this is just the way Oda writes his series.

4) Oda’s female character designs

Since the One Piece timeskip, Oda has redefined how he draws women. Just look at the difference between Nami's design before and after the timeskip. Most female characters now have a similar body type, particularly with the hourglass figure.

Some readers appreciate the fanservice and don't mind it one bit. In contrast, others find the overly sexualized designs to be over-the-top.

Another issue is whether or not Oda suffers from same face syndrome. Many female characters share Nami's exact features, including Vivi and Rebecca. This has led to many fans complaining about a lack of diversity in his female designs, at least for the attractive ones.

3) Sabo replacing Ace


Sabo has always been a popular character in the One Piece series. He is a very charismatic individual who always steals the show. However, a vocal minority despises him. They believe he was a lazy substitute for Ace, who died in Marineford.

Keep in mind that Sabo first showed up during Luffy's flashback. Some readers wanted him to stay dead so that the story would have a more dramatic impact. When he took Ace's Devil Fruit in the Dressrosa arc, it made him seem like a direct copy of the character.

Another problem is that Sabo represents a huge plot hole in the story. Ace should've been able to read the papers and find his brother's bounty. Sabo was the first commander of the Revolutionary Army, led by the world's most infamous criminal.

2) Luffy defeating Kaido

One Piece Chapter 1050 declared Luffy the victor against Kaido. Naturally, a few people were very unhappy with how it ended. This vocal minority wanted Kaido to continue fighting, but most people wanted to move on from Wano Country.

Oda never made it clear whether or not Kaido Awakened his Devil Fruit. For that reason, some readers believed that it wasn't used yet. It wouldn't make sense for someone as powerful as Kaido never to Awaken his powers.

Either way, Kaido seems to be down for the count. More than a few readers have expressed disappointment over his defeat. Kaido was hyped for being the world's strongest creature, so perhaps they had a grander exit in mind.

1) Yamato’s gender


Yamato's gender is the most controversial aspect of the One Piece series. That says a lot for a series that lasted 25 years. People cannot stop getting heated over this subject matter.

Yamato greatly admires Oden, which is why she adopted his identity. Kaido and the Beasts Pirates often refer to her with male pronouns. However, a Vivre Card lists her gender as female. Her introductory box also called her a "daughter of Kaido," which only makes it more confusing.

Unfortunately, the fanbase cannot find any significant consensus on this issue. What also doesn't help is the rise of transphobic attacks in the One Piece community. Simply referring to Yamato with "he/him" pronouns is enough to start a flame war.

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Edited by Suchitra