This write up will require a few different topics to make sense. Them being:
What is Luffy’s Fate
Roger & Luffy’s Reputation, what’s the Importance in terms of the story?
Role of Luffy’s Friends
- Finally, the Reverie & the role of the RA
What is Fate/Luck
As the highlighted area says, fate is a measure of a man’s worth at all moments. We can take this to mean that any-one who is destined for greatness, will always have fate deal him/her the best cards irregardless of how dire a situation is; ultimately, those destined for greatness have the greatest plot armour if you will, in terms of survival and good luck. This theme of luck is mentioned and dotted all throughout the Manga, but it’s very easy to miss.
It’s quite apparent that certain characters are happy to leave fate to deal their cards for them, they’re completely outrageous characters, and seem to personify “Fate” as if it were a god. Is this just mere overconfidence & coincidence? As the story has progressed, we’ve witnessed how fortunate so many characters who are favoured by fate are as things continuously end up playing out in their favour; of course, one could say it is coincidence, but it seems to be a real measure of greatness.
Luck and Fate are used interchangeably
The Blackbeard Pirates are known for speaking of fate ever so often; the very first panel at the top shows a dialogue between the crew, and it’s evident that they believe in fate, and that they’re destined for greatness; we see luck and fate seemingly used interchangeably which draws one to believe, they’re one and the same thing.
Fate’s Deal with Zoro
A great example is that of Zoro choosing swords with Tashigi, with absolute confidence and readiness to have his arms lopped off, he throws a cursed sword in the air while everyone tense, and on their toes reluctantly watches to see the result? Of course, he seems to have fate and luck shining upon him, and his response prior to this deadly stunt seems to be key in what fate is; it’s an attribute shared by special and great people destined to accomplish great things. Realistically, this could have gone wrong, but things happened to go right due to fate.
Fate’s Deal with Blackbeard’s
Prior to this, we see that Blackbeard and co. were poisoned by Magellan549, and Shiliew just happened to walk by with an antidote, and he takes note of their belief in fate which he seems attracted to. In the next page which is the panel above, we’re told he’s been waiting for a man such as Blackbeard, a man destined for Greatness in other words.
Fate’s Deal with Luffy
This is a moment that captivated many, Bartolomeo in particular. It’s at this point that we see just exactly how lucky Luffy is. He’s about to be executed, and there’s no way for escape, and he somehow makes it out alive against all the odds. To have lightening so accurate strike the blade at the very last moment is nothing short of miraculous; as we’re told, this is a sign of how great and special Luffy is.
Mihawk testing Luffy’s Luck & Fate (Plot Armour)
As like many great characters, Mihawk is a believer in fate and uses it to determine just how great Luffy is; Shanks believes that Luffy is destined to be the torch for the next generation, and it seems like he passed the test. Mihawk in this chapter attempts to kill Luffy multiple times, and even when within his range561 with certain death imminent, he fails or rather, fate denies him; fate & luck deal Luffy superior cards which result in Luffy’s survival.
Ultimately, with this, Mihawk determines that Luffy truly is special, and more so with his charisma and natural ability to draw in allies effortlessly. With future arcs coming, we can rest assured that no matter how dire the situation is, Luffy’s luck will always pull through for him. Mihawk’s utterance here is can be received as breaking the 4th wall in the sense that it informs the reader that Luffy’s existence more or less makes things spin his way no matter how hard people try to negate it.
It’s because of this very concept that no matter how dire the situation is, things always work out in a way we may call serendipitous and we see this in each and every arc which is why he must always be given the benefit of the doubt. We can look at every arc and he tends to just have the right things, right people and right setup before he gets involved in situations; things that would realistically have required years of planning, scouting, research and investigation… he walks into as though his victory is assured which in a sense, it really is.
If we look at any arc or situation and analyse how things turned out the way they did, it becomes pretty apparent. Luffy goes into situations insouciant, careless and bereft of foreknowledge and planing. We often see him diving in blindly hoping for the best. Due to plot-armour which Oda has craftily guised as fate, it always works out.
Punk Hazard and onwards
Luffy saw the Island that was most intriguing as it wasn’t even recognized by the Log Pose, it’s not like this meeting was planned to begin with655.
Law also says, this meeting was luck, not planned667.
Law without knowing of Luffy, was already proceeding with the necessary steps required to take down a Yonko, not something he conjured the moment Luffy appeared. This tells us he’s really been planning extensively, and the very fact that he allied with Luffy whom he wasn’t expecting was pure coincidence 667.
This chance meeting acquainted the SHs in their new plan to take on Kaido with Kinemon who was also heading for Zou700.
The success at Dressrosa which the Revolutionary Army and World Government had failed to do in exposing Joker despite years of trying, the Strawhat crew succeed in a day without having planned for years. Everything just fell into place > The Tontattas revolting on the very day were going to wage war against Joker > The Revolutionary Army Chief of Staff being there > The Gladiators being there to fight on Luffy’s behalf > The fact of all the Admirals, Fujitora with no loyalty to the World Government was there to let them rampage.
From Zou, they made alliance with the Minks819.
Coincidence after coincidence. Even Sanji’s abduction which forced the SHs to take a detour to Whole Cake Island worked out in their favour in obtaining a Poneglyph and it’s only really because Pedro had already been there that they were able to be successful.
Bege who’d scouted the area for a year and worked up a plan, the Sun Pirates being there to aid and much more. All the necessities for them to win were present. It’s almost like Bege’s role just like Law’s in Dressrosa was to prepare things in advanced for Luffy and we can assume this will also be the case in Wano too.
People do not interfere with fate or can do so, they’re manipulated by fate as though, these moments were predetermined. The implications this has can be seen in all arcs; what we see as coincidence in the scheme of things is just as it was meant to be; destiny.
Basil Hawkins: Strange… Strawhat Luffy’s chances of survival… No matter how many times I check it…. It never comes out to be ZERO!
While we may look on at his successes, we may lose sight of the purpose of all this and what it’s really climaxing towards. We only need to head back to Marineford’s war of the best for hints. Whitebeard remarks about how someone will find the One Piece which leads to carrying centuries of history on their back leading to challenging the World Government in order to bring about a great change576; in saying this, he makes it clear that Teach isn’t the one Roger was waiting576 for implying Luffy is which is why he makes it imperative that his crew protect Luffy570.
Note: Whitebeard was grooming Ace to be Pirate King; Whitebeard after witnessing Luffy’s influence orders Marco to protect Luffy; Whitebeard also let’s Teach knowhe’s not the one Roger was waiting for. What do all these characters have in common? They’re all Ds. Click the title above to read more on this if interested.
Otohime makes similar sentiments repeating what Joyboy mentioned on a Poneglyph to the last Poseidon626 in which he makes know the promise of a successor who will bring about change in his stead649; he couldn’t fulfil his promise and therefore had to leave this ambition to someone else.
Luffy’s fate is ultimately to become Pirate King by finding One Piece in order to challenge the world. The moment he does, we can assume it’d be at the right time with the right set of people and the right setting in order to be victorious.
We all know whomever finds One Piece is the Pirate King. The subtitle above is a far more articulate explanation of One Piece, but I will summarise what it is to shorten the length of this overall writing. We’re told by Tamago that the Road Poneglyph leads to Raftel846; at Raftel exists 9 Poneglyph which are regarded as the “Real Poneglyph” as the diagram indicates. These 9 Poneglyph reveal the secret of the world846. The lynch-pin to all this is what Tamago states concerning the Road Poneglyph, he states they’re the Route to Pirate King meaning they’re what makes one Pirate King846, and as a result, the Emperors try to steal it from the other.
Note: It’s because the Poneglyph reveals the secret of the world and makes one Pirate King that Kaido tried to interrogate the truth of the One Piece out of Odenwho learnt the secret of the world818 because acquiring the Poneglyph from the other Emperors and deciphering them is difficult; in a sense, he tried to cheat hisway from needing to go to Raftel.
I’m sure some have already realised what the secret of the world is, it’s the Void Century which is why Whitebeard tells us that when One Piece is found, the one who does will carry the history of centuries on their shoulder and challenge the World Government.
The Void Century is more or less in period in time where the Celestial Dragons/Tenryuubito committed a lot of despicable acts 900 years ago, and the Poneglyph which were created in the 800 years ago document all these atrocities. This is why the World Government want to keep it a secret. Click this subtitle to get a full read on what the Void Century is. The gist of the Void Century is that the Tenryuubito are racist, and vile beings who need to be uprooted from power. This was initially the goal of Joyboy, but due to circumstance, he had to leave this ambition to a future successor.
Note: Would recommend reading this to get informed on who Joyboy is and his goal.
Roger & Luffy’s Fate, Reputation, and what’s the Importance in terms of the story?
Familiar to us are the similarities between Roger and Luffy, there is however something that sets them apart. In order to elucidate on what distinguishes both these characters, we must talk about something they have in common in regard to the locations they’ve been and what was done there in relation to how it affected their reputations and what fate’s role played. What exactly is the relevance of reputation in this piece? So far, I’m just going to articulate the different components and then piece them together to make sense of it all, so please bare with me.
The perception the world had concerning Roger was him being a menacing demon that wreaked havoc wherever he went, a plague to society and the world at large; Roger was hated so much due to the opinion the world had of him that ill intent was also gazing at the mere hypothetical idea of an offspring574. In contrast, but far and few within were those who saw Roger as an honest, loyal and friendly individual; people such as Garp, then Gan Fall from Skypiea301 and while at Wano, he was considered to be a man of honour820.
The theme appears to be that those that acquainted themselves with Roger (bar Pirates) thought highly of Roger. This leads us to the conclusion that the perception the world had of Roger was likely the result of Propaganda; the World Government lied about capturing Roger to boost the image of the Navy506 (whose apparent defeat and subsequent capture was likely credited as an accolade to Garp, thus, the title “the Hero”) and we can assume his reputation was also made out in this way to tarnish his reputation even further.
Though, Roger went to Skypiea301 & Fishman Island648 like Luffy, he didn’t accomplish anything conspicuously notable there. In Skypiea, the reason Roger didn’t end this 400 year long war was because there was no Montblack Cricket to inform Roger about the importance of ringing the bell230 to end the war, nor was there an Enel (a common enemy) plunging the country into despair for the Skypieans and Shandians to fight and subsequently unite in order to overcome this villain299.
At Fishman Island, he seemingly wasn’t a friend of King Neptune and it’s only really after the Pirate Age that Fishman Island became riddled with Pirates which is where Whitebeard stepped in645. Prior to Roger’s death, it wasn’t the age of piracy where the Fishman were really subject to abuse frequent abuse.
It appears as though the reason Luffy (unlike Roger) was able to have noticeable positive impacts was because the circumstances presented themselves to him. it’s more like coincidence that things just turned out this way and ultimately make him out to be a hero as fate intended; Roger never had those opportunities to be heroic. Without the presence of conflict for him to intervene in, there’d be no opportunity for him to become a hero. Just an enumeration of the Heroic things Luffy has done despite not really intending to do so:
We have Cocoyashi village whom are indebted to Luffy for taking out Arlong and Nezumi the corrupt Pirate.
There’s Drum Kingdom who are indebted to him for Wapol’s defeat and the return of their doctors which saved the Country.
Alabasta is another case.
The 1000s of people saved at Thriller Bark.
Timing & Purpose
Potentially, this may paint out Roger’s role as useless, but we also ought to take into consideration fate is also limited by timing. Assuming one’s read the insight into who Joyboy is and his goal, these should make sense of things:
Poseidon is 16 years old; Roger died 24 years ago; Poseidon didn’t come into existence until 8 years after his death meaning she wasn’t existing in his era.
Poseidon not being in existence means Roger could never have had the power to control the Sea Kings to move Noah; Joyboy’s mission was highly dependant on Poseidon existing.
Roger wasn’t able to befriend her, Luffy was.
Unlike Roger, Luffy is actually loved by people. Many people hated Roger because he never had the opportunity to win the hearts of people.
Despite the fact Roger didn’t get to experience the same spot-light as Luffy, or learn things that Luffy and his crew would, his role was to pave the way for Luffy to facilitate the realisation of the Will of D. In order to defeat the World Government, it’s necessary to be able to win hearts and make allies which is what is possible through becoming a Hero. It his through becoming a hero that his reputation is cemented and impervious to tarnish, and subsequently what will make it possible to create allies of Countries who may also side with the Strawhats when he challenges the World Government.
Note: This is the reason for the running gag regarding why the Strawhats always claim to hate being heroes, yet they do heroic things all the time. It’s a play onirony because they’re ultimately heroes.
Role of Luffy’s Friends and what he Symbolises
As the previous wall of text above indicates, Luffy has gotten involved in the problems of countries liberating and saving them one after the other. What he’s doing is nothing short of being Revolutionary. His achievement thus far in the story despite just being a simply minded enthusiast has not been out of motivation to change the world or his surrounding, but it’s usually for simple reasons comparatively shallow in context of the big picture. His reasoning predicates on helping his friends, but his interventionalways end up having a macroscopic and pandemic effect.
The main motivation and driving force is to help his friends when we on hindsight review each and every arc or mini-arc. It is through his friends that his eyes are opened to the plights of others which is the bigger picture in the scheme of things and that’s when he truly recognises what he needs to do (e.g. wanting to beat Joker up for Rebecca enlightened him to the truth of Dressrosa and why he had to help them746). His friends steer him in the right direction as we’ve seen time and time again, and all he has to do is do the simple task of defeating those obstacles in the way.
Luffy is symbolic of freedom, and when he sees that basic human right being perverted and taken away from people, it disgusts him. He knows the value of freedom, it’s why he became a Pirate, but when he learns that the freedom of others are being compromised through his friends, he will fight for them.
His role as the protagonist is literally a plot device. He’s the solution to problems. We can see in arcs like Arlong Park or Dressrosa where the real victims didn’t get to deliver Justice; Nami having history with Arlong deserved to conclude things just like Law would ideally should have been the one to take down Joker being that he was the one traumatised by Joker. His friends or allies also tend to set things up for him which is why he’s usually not the instigator or master-mind behind any ventures, he tends to get involved by sheer chance and things go his way despite it all being whimsical. Luffy’s role as the protagonist is to take centre-stage and do what others cannot do. This gives us an idea of what will come of the Revolutionary Army based on this trend.
Finally, the Reverie & the role of the Revolutionary Army (Chapter 905)
Shirahoshi has seen the outside world for the first time and is entranced by its beauty and splendor. She says she’d like the Fishmen to all see the Sun and beauty of the surface while King Neptune tells her this is the purpose of the Reverie which we’ve known from approximately 300 chapters ago via the sentiments of Queen Otohime. The Fishman as are many other races, are victims of racism and prejudice.
Then we have the instances where the Fishman tries to help out Stelly (Human who wishes to become a Tenryuubito), and we see his reaction. He’s absolutely ignorant and has a misconception regarding this race. He believes they are cannibals and diseased and as a result of this, he fears them. This interaction here is to possibly symbolic of the way Humans in general view Fishmen. They hear rumours and have misconceptions despite having not met them to truly determine what sort of people they are; racism so to speak. This is the sort of attitude that inhibits progress and being that it’s the Tenryuubito who run the show and distinguish themselves from even Humans, they will likely object to their wish to make surface as they regard them as inferior. This will ultimately make their wish only possible through the SHs who are destined to save the world.
The rejection of the Fishman from taking the surface reminds us of Luffy promising to take Shirahoshi on a walk in a forest653 and more so with her new-found desire to take to the surface; Luffy doesn’t get involved in things because he has a grandiose ideal a la the Revolutionary Army, he does things for those in his immediate reach, his friends and these actions tend to snowball effect into something greater than his immediate wishes.
This takes us back Luffy’s role at the protagonist to save the world and solve problems people can’t. Everything he’s done so far will culminate into his final achievement which is defeating the Celestial Dragons and their system. While this may be the goal of the Revolutionary Army, we can be sure that at the right time, Luffy will eventually get involved and more so since Robin has ties with the Revolutionary596 and wishes to reveal the Void Century to the world396 as her predecessors wanted her to do. Luffy will likely not understand the Void Century, but thanks to Robin, it’s likely she’ll simplify things for him to give him reason to get involved and we can expect those he loves to truly be the purpose of his fighting.
In order for this fight to kick off between Luffy and the Celestial Dragons, Robin would need to tell the world of the Celestial Dragons’s atrocities and why the World Government is currently evil. For Robin’s words to be believes, Luffy would likely need a reputation that has the masses believing in him which is why King Cobra of Alabasta and King Neptune are important characters as are his deed which is what will garnish his reputation and protect him from propaganda like was the case with Roger799; people who have personally witnessed Luffy’s heroism can’t be fooled. It’s because of Luffy’s deeds that he can garner a credible reputation and the backing of World Figures like Neptune and Cobra to stand behind him and what he’s to reveal to the world.
I believe this is what will incite the war between the World Government, and I expect that this is what will trigger his involvement ultimately. The Revolutionary Army may start the war, but Luffy will ultimately finish. More so with Dragon being a figure whom even his allies barely know, it will be difficult for the world to follow him, but Luffy being a figure recognised not just in the news, but by many people will be a figure that people would willingly associate with and trust.
Credits – HPsyche