What is Luffy’s Devil Fruit Power in ‘One Piece’?
Also featured: a more in-depth discussion than you're probably looking for about what type of Devil Fruit it is
If you have clicked on this article, you are probably new to One Piece. Or you’re considering watching One Piece. In which case, let me be among the first in the One Piece fanbase to warmly welcome you. Please, sit down and have a giant slab of meat or a Pirate Bento. You’re in for a long, wonderful, wild ride. I’ll tell you everything you want to know. I’ll be the doting Sanji to your Nami. What’s Luffy’s Devil Fruit Power, you ask? Well, then.
In the world of One Piece, where snails can become phones, Devil Fruits are literal fruits you can eat which bestow special powers. Each Devil Fruit is one of a kind. Furthermore, only one person can gain the benefits of a Devil Fruit – technically, you’d only need one bite to gain the fruit’s effects. The last rule is that you cannot have more than one Devil Fruit power at once. At least … that’s supposed to be true.
The powers bestowed by Devil Fruits come in three types: Paramecia, which grants the user some kind of superhuman ability; Zoan, which allows the user to transform into an animal; and Logia, which turns the user’s body into some kind of natural element, such as fire or ice, and enables them to produce that element at will.
In the opening moments of One Piece, a very young Monkey D. Luffy eats the Gum-Gum Fruit (Gomu Gomu no Mi, in Japanese). The Gum-Gum Fruit turns Luffy into a Paramecia-type Rubber Human (Gomu Ningen). His whole body is made out of rubber. This means he can stretch like no one’s business, and that things like bullets or cannons have no effect on him. (Honestly, as an American living in this country such as it is, I feel Luffy’s immunity to gunfire is far undersold as a subtle move to make guns in One Piece look impotent.) The Gum-Gum Fruit is not related to Luffy’s near-immunity to poison.
But wait, you might ask – if Luffy’s body is made of rubber, why is the Gum-Gum Fruit a Paramecia type and not a Logia type? I’m so impressed you caught that! Thank you! And yes, this issue often confuses even me. The difference between Luffy’s abilities and a Logia type is that Luffy cannot create rubber. There is a so-called “special” Paramecia much later in the series, the Mochi-Mochi Fruit, which breaks this rule. Having an “awakened” Devil Fruit power also can give one the ability to turn inorganic matter around them into their substance. Both of these caveats hurt my brain a little bit.
So let’s move to a more simple distinction: all Logia Devil Fruits consist of elements found more-or-less in nature. We’re talking gas, darkness, light, smoke, magma, etc. Rubber, alas, isn’t a natural element.
Thank you for coming to today’s One Piece class, in which I went into more detail than you asked for! Please enjoy your time on the Grand Line.
(Image credit: Toei Animation)
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