One Piece Chapter 1043: Luffy's Awakening, Yamato's deadly determination, and more

One Piece Chapter 1043 reveals more to Luffy's trademark smile than previously thought (Image Credits: Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, Viz Media, One Piece)
One Piece Chapter 1043 reveals more to Luffy's trademark smile than previously thought (Image Credits: Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, Viz Media, One Piece)

One Piece Chapter 1043 scanlations were released earlier tonight, and with them comes an unofficial confirmation of certain verbiage in the chapter. One Piece Chapter 1043 leaks initially suggested a different word being used to mean grin, which can also be read as “Nika.”

This is a reference to Nika the Sun God, a mythical character in the series first referenced by Who’s Who during his fight with Jinbe. Upon the initial introduction of the character, a silhouette sketch was provided, which looked very similar to a portrayal of Luffy during Skypiea’s victory banquet segment.

Fans were led to believe that similar appearances weren't a coincidence, which, along with Luffy seemingly being the inheritor of Joy Boy’s will, is evidently confirmed. Follow along as this article breaks down these revelations from One Piece Chapter 1043, as well as a full breakdown of the chapter.

One Piece Chapter 1043 has startling consequences for series at large and Onigashima Raid

One Piece Chapter 1043: Kaido’s revenge and announcement

One Piece Chapter 1043 begins its story content immediately where the last chapter left off, as Luffy is being struck by Kaido’s kanabo. The Yonko still has the appalled look on his face as his adversary cries out in pain. He’s bloody and bruised, eyes rolled back, while the CP0 boss looks to the ground, clearly accepting his fate.

An overhead shot of the scene follows, with the remaining CP0 agent looking up at the roof as a result of the noise. Steam begins rising out of Luffy’s mouth, indicating the end of Gear Fourth, as Kaido looks on, seemingly disgusted. A zoomed-out shot of Onigashima follows, with Momonosuke announcing he can no longer hear “Luffy’s voice.”

He’s now fully powered down from Gear Fourth, unconscious and seemingly more knocked out than ever before in the series. The unthinkable follows, with the narrator announcing that, as of One Piece Chapter 1043, Kaido is the winner of the Rooftop battle. He asks the CP0 boss if he knows what he’s done, who doesn’t respond.

Kaido approaches, preparing to attack while the CP0 boss stands still, accepting his fate in its final approach. The unhappy victor swings his kanabo back, launching it downward and creating a massive cloud of debris in the process. Shots of the castle’s interior are seen with chunks of the roof falling down, as the aforementioned remaining CP0 agent seems to sadly accept his boss’ fate.

One Piece Chapter 1043 then switches to Kawamatsu, who is bandaged after his contributions to the raid. He’s nearby some samurai, who are all in an area where the roof is falling down and fire is spreading nearby. He realizes they can’t do anything about the flames and tell the samurai to leave as there is no honor in burning to death.

Suddenly, an explosion appears behind Kawamatsu, which is revealed to be Kaido’s Blast Breath as he flies into the castle. He says that Momonosuke must declare his surrender, since Luffy is dead and they’ve now lost. He says any who still wish to fight can step forward, while Kid, Law, Chopper, Nami, and Otama are seen reacting to the news.

Nami, however, refuses to believe Kaido, marches out of her bathhouse hiding place and calls him an “oversized snake” who’s lying about Luffy’s death. He comments on how some still won’t have their spirits broken as she continues yelling, before launching a Blast Breath in her direction.

Thankfully, Marco blocks it in time, saving her life in the process and also telling her not to give up yet. Kaido announces that Onigashima will land on the Flower Capital “without delay,” adding that all men, women, and children of Wano will become his slave workforce. He says that Wano is just a “giant weapons factory” to him, saying he doesn’t care about the people at all.

Further driving home his personality regarding combat, life, and death, he says that this was what it meant to lose a war. A particularly interesting line here is said about war means one “gambles with [their] rights and dreams,” something which may possibly tie into his hopefully soon-to-come flashback.

He reaffirms that bringing him Momonosuke will end the fight, while Beast Pirate fodder are seen rushing a still-downed Law and Kid. Thankfully, their respective crews leap in to protect them, which are followed by Carrot and Nekomamushi running back inside the castle.

One Piece Chapter 1043 quickly turned to the samurai trapped in the castle’s basement, surrounde surrounding them with no exit. Not prepared to bend the knee to Kaido just yet, Law and Kid prepare to fight him, despite being incredibly spent and wounded from their fight with Big Mom.

One Piece Chapter 1043: Yamato’s determination and Zunesha’s announcement

One Piece Chapter 1043 then returns to Momonosuke in the skies around the island, who is currently talking to Yamato about the latest developments. He seems ready to accept defeat, while Yamato is telling him to continue fighting, as is the way of the samurai. She also points out that everyone else besides them is at their limits, even Kaido.

Momonosuke retorts that this will only lead to more lives being lost, and that they must yield in light of Luffy’s supposed death. Knowing full well what it’s like to live under Kaido’s servitude, Yamato says they’ll just be slaves until they die from exhaustion, and that surrendering would save no one in the end.

This connects with Momo, while Yamato continues saying all of Wano’s daimyo who bent the knee to Kaido died full of regret for it. She says that the last 20 years of Wano’s suffering were for this battle, this chance, saying that even if surrender was the only option, she’d rather die. The two lock eyes, as a shot of samurai and Beast Pirates clashing is seen, with Momo seemingly newly determined.

One Piece Chapter 1043 returns inside the Onigashima castle, showing Kaido flying around launching Blast Breath’s. The perspective then shifts to the skies in Onigashima, then to the rooftop, where Luffy is still unconscious, yet some sort of onomatopoeia is floating from him.

Perspective shifts to Zunesha, who calls out to Momonosuke, saying they can hear “it,” to which Momonosuke obviously asks what “it” is. They say it really takes them back, as a shot of Luffy’s arm is seen. They continue, saying they can hear the “drums of liberation” for the first time in 800 years, saying “he” is there without a doubt.

One Piece Chapter 1043: Luffy’s Awakening and what it means

In One Piece Chapter 1043’s final panels, Momonosuke asks Zunesha who “he” is. They respond that “he” is Joy Boy, and that he has returned. As they say he has returned, a shot of Luffy is seen, with his body and straw hat seemingly melting as he grins. His Devil Fruit has Awakened, and the onomatopoeia for this grin is said to be pronounced “Nika.”

While it’s best to wait for official translations to be released this Sunday, March 12, before jumping to conclusions, this would seem to suggest Luffy is somehow related to Nika. Considering the themes One Piece is structured around, this is most likely symbolic of Luffy being the inheritor of Nika’s will.

Furthermore, fans had previously theorized that Nika and Joy Boy were related. Zunesha clearly says Luffy is Joy Boy here (more on that later), and if the Nika translation is accurate, it confirms fans’ theory of the two mythical figures being related. This would shed some much-needed light on the role he is meant to play in the world of One Piece, as well as confirm a fantastic fan theory.

At the very least, with the confirmation of Luffy being Joy Boy, several other fan theories are either confirmed or now hold greater weight to them. This would also seemingly confirm he’s meant to fulfill the original Joy Boy’s promise to Fishman Island, which was revealed in the Poneglyph found there.

The Sea King’s discussion of prophesied individuals as seen in Oden’s flashback also seem confirmed to be Luffy and Shirahoshi. This further cements a larger role the former is meant to play in the world of One Piece overall.

While the exact nature of Luffy’s relationship to Joy Boy (and, apparently, Nika) is still unknown, the most likely scenario is that he is the inheritor of the other’s will. Fans currently theorize this is most likely via his Gum-Gum Fruit, which the two were most likely both owners of.

Speaking of Luffy’s Devil Fruit, this would also seem to confirm that his Fruit is what the Gorosei were discussing. This would mean that the name of Luffy’s Fruit is, in fact, not the Gum-Gum Fruit, and has a true name which is yet to be revealed.

These are truly exciting developments, even if divisive, and at least provide much-needed answers which confirm and deny many long-standing theories.

One Piece Chapter 1043: In summation

Unfortunately, One Piece Chapter 1043 announced the series is going on a one-week break. Although craving to know more, general fans seem more than happy with the developments One Piece Chapter 1043 has provided them with.

While official translations that will be released this Sunday, March 16, are still needed to confirm some key details, the unofficial translations rarely make large mistakes. These fan-translated copies of the chapters are usually fairly accurate, so One Piece Chapter 1043’s use of the pronunciation “Nika” for “grin” is most likely accurate.

Be sure to keep up with more One Piece Chapter 1043 news, as well as One Piece anime, film, and live-action news as 2022 progresses.

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