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‘One Piece’ Chapter 1079: Was a Major Character Just Killed With A One-Shot Attack?!

Screenshot of Luffy being sad

One Piece has been setting up an epic Battle Royale since the beginning of 2023. The stakes are about as high as they could possibly be. Depending on who you ask, the retrieval of the One Piece, the control of the oceans, the freedom of information against an authoritarian government, and, of course, living another day are all on the line. We’ve been bracing ourselves for some major showdowns. It’s the final saga, after all. But Eiichiro Oda showed us just how quickly and brutally a pirate’s entire career can come to an end.

Spoilers ahead for One Piece‘s Egghead arc, which is currently manga-only!

One of the fights attracting the most attention was Eustass “Captain” Kid vs. Shanks and the Giant Warrior Pirates. Notice the “and” allying an emperor’s crew with a much-feared group of giants. But Kid shows up on Elbaf, the giant island, with an urge to continue the fight he started with Shanks during One Piece‘s time skip. For his part, Shanks wants to protect his fleet—who, we find out this chapter, are all useless weaklings under his protection. Kid’s Road Poneglyphs would also be nice.

Look. I hate to say “I called it.” But regarding this fight between Kid and Shanks, I previously wrote: “I feel like this particular battle is so ridiculously one-sided, there’s bound to be a twist here.” There wasn’t a twist. Except that it was so ridiculously one-sided, Kid’s entire pirating career ended in a single instant.

A reminder of Kid’s brutality

Because Kid has one the same side as Luffy during Wano and Sabaody, we’ve grown to see him as an ally. He, Luffy, and Law are all part of the Worst Generation. There are quite a few of Kid-lovers out there. He scored 23rd on the World Top 100 Character Poll a few years ago, which is high, considering One Piece has literally one thousand characters.

Considering all this “positive press,” I forgot that Kid has a history of being a bloodthirsty brute. When he first meet him in Sabaody, it’s alongside the context that he has a high bounty for killing countless innocent civilians. Back in chapter 594 (also pre-time skip), Kid kills tied-and-bound prisoners who beg for mercy, saying they just want to return to their families. We haven’t seen that side of Kid in a while, though. Not until this chapter.

Shanks’ fleet—nine ships in total, including his own—is at Elbaf. And we learn for the first time that Shanks’ affiliates are “famous for being weak.” Shanks is protecting these eccentric pirates. They’re under his flag because, otherwise, they would be long dead.

This is somewhat obvious when Kid interacts with a few of the captains: a strange frog-man, an old guy whose dentures fall out mid-sentence, and a very cutesy princess. But to Kid and his crew, they’re an emperor’s fleet. Underestimating them could be a fatal flaw. Turns out, so was overestimating them.

Even if Kid knew these guys weren’t really a threat, he basically tells us he wouldn’t do anything differently. Killer warns Kid not to get sloppy, and Kid replies, “I wasn’t gonna go easy on ’em … Even if they are nobodies …” As he readies his Damned Punk canon, Kid says, “I don’t care who they are!! I’ll wipe ’em out in ten seconds flat!!” To Kid, “not going easy on someone” means “wiping them out.” This gung-ho attitude towards killing checks out with what we knew about Kid pre-time skip.

The strike that changes everything

Of course, with everything we know about Shanks, an attack on people he’s sworn to protect is obviously going to be unforgivable. Thanks to his S-tier Observation Haki, Shanks can see the outcome of Kid’s attack before it’s even ready. We’re talking more than the measly seconds that Charlotte Katakuri or Luffy can manage. Shanks sees that Kid will destroy the affiliates’ ships and kill the affiliates themselves. It would be tantamount to a massacre. “This damage is too extreme!!!” he frantically concludes.

One Piece anime animator Henry Thurlow notes that this is the first time in the entire series Shanks becomes desperate. This defeat is overwhelming, but Shanks’ giant flex is a testament to Kid’s potential.

In a single moment, he’s in front of Kid, who’s just about to unleash his big attack. But Shanks strikes first. He unleashes his monster Conquerer’s Haki to KO the lesser members of Kid’s crew, while simultaneously (!!) attacking with his sword. Although he gets in a swing during One Piece Film: Red, this is the first time we’ve ever seen Shanks use his sword in One Piece canon. And it’s the same attack that his adoptive papa, Gol D. Roger, uses when he first meets Kozuki Oden: Devine Departure.

Notably, Roger’s attack knocks Oden through many trees and causes some blood to spit up. But Oden bounces right back. Kid does not. It appears as if Shanks’ attack caused Kid’s Damned Punk to backfire on himself. Kid gets hit at close-range with his own huge explosion. Members of his crew are blasted overboard. Killer gets directly hit while trying to save his captain. Kid is actively dying.

It’s one hell of a move. It’s overwhelming and decisive. The remainder of the Kid Pirates panic and immediately surrender. Heat, who scoffed at begging for help 74 chapters ago, screams to Shanks, “We surrender, Red-Hair!!! Spare our lives!!!” They fucking give him all of their hard-fought Road Poneglyphs. Without Shanks even asking for them. The Kid Pirates are crushed. They are actively forfeiting their dream of reaching the One Piece.

But that’s not enough. Because remember how I said “and the Warrior Pirates” was a key phrase in assessing the might of Shanks’ forces? Here comes Dorry and Broggy. And they’re angry as hell that Kid was cool with their hometown incurring collateral damage during his attack on Shanks’ affiliates. “If you want to point guns at our home, just remember what goes around, comes around!!” they yell. And they utterly destroy Kid’s ship with a single blow.

Is Kid dead?! What happens now?

The narration makes it very clear: Kid and the Kid Pirates are “destroyed.” They are out of the race for the One Piece.

We don’t know if Kid is dead, or what the overall death toll is for the Kid Pirates. Although Kid was dying, it’s hard to believe Oda will allow a major character to breathe his last breath off screen. But this is the final saga. It’s not impossible.

What’s conclusive is that even if Kid survives, his options are now limited. The remainder of the Kid Pirates can join Shanks’ crew/fleet (or someone else’s, maybe), or else retire from piracy. This isn’t like Kuma “disbanding” the Straw Hats at Sabaody. The Kid Pirates are “destroyed.” They’re out.

We all knew deep down that, in order for Luffy to get the One Piece and become King of the Pirates, other characters we’ve come to love would fail in their own dream. We’re now seeing exactly how brutal losing the race to the One Piece can be.

In the immediate future, I am horrified for my best and most beautiful grumpy guy, Trafalgar Law. Law and his Heart Pirates were last seen battling Blackbeard and his crew. And putting up a much better fight (sorry). But some contingent of the Blackbeard Pirates is approaching Egghead. Initially, I assumed it was just a member or two, like Kuzan. But the more I think about, the more I worry that it’s the main force. Oda could be prepping for a twin revelation that Law also lost. As a giant Law fangirl, I don’t think I can handle that.

There’s going to be rough seas ahead. In the meantime, do not mess with Shanks.

(Featured image: Toei Animation)

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Kirsten (she/her) is a contributing writer at the Mary Sue specializing in anime and gaming. In the last decade, she's also written for Channel Frederator (and its offshoots), Screen Rant, and more. In the other half of her professional life, she's also a musician, which includes leading a very weird rock band named Throwaway. When not talking about One Piece or The Legend of Zelda, she's talking about her cats, Momo and Jimbei.