One Piece: Oda’s Stalling Could Be BAD News for Yamato

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for One Piece Chapter #1018, "Jimbei vs. Who's-Who," by Eiichiro Oda, available in English via Manga Plus and Viz Media.

The Wano arc has reached its climax in the One Piece manga, but the fight readers have been anxiously anticipating hasn't actually been shown yet. Recently, Luffy was thrown into the ocean after his defeat by Kaido, but as of Chapter #1016, Yamato has stepped up to take the Yonko on in his stead. It seemed a given that readers would get glimpses of the fight throughout the next ones, but not one panel of the fight has been shown since Yamato announced he'd be joining the Straw Hats.

Instead, we've been following the progress of the other Straw Hats. Starting with the Heart Pirates pulling Luffy out of the water and Chopper regressing into a "Baby-Geezer" state. It's also been decided that Zoro will take Dr. Miyagi's regenerative medicine so that he can rejoin the fight. Sanji learned that Queen was a member of his father's research group, the MADS, and that he's a cyborg.

Meanwhile, after a brief battle involving Big Mom and Ulti, Zeus was able to escape being eaten by Hera, Big Mom's newest homie, and is now living inside Nami's Climate Baton. As she and Usopp tried to get O-Tama to the Performance Floor balcony, they were attacked by Ulti, who believed O-Tama was responsible for everything going wrong with the battle. After Nami and Zeus took Ulti out again, O-Tama was able to use the Mary Bao Huang to help give the order for everyone who ate her dumplings to switch sides.

While all of this was going on, the members of the CP0 group were keeping track of the numbers while also plotting to assassinate the Tobi-Roppo Who's-Who -- a former CP9, member -- should he survive his battle with Jimbei. During this battle, Who's-Wh--recounted how he was imprisoned over Shanks's theft of the Gum-Gum Fruit 12 years ago. He also tells of a prison story about the Sun God Nika, who the oppressed believed would lead them to freedom. Because Jimbei was the leader of the Sun Pirates and a Fish-Man, Who's-Who believed that Jimbei would know whether the stories were true, though his casual racism earned him a crushing (seeming) defeat from the Straw Hat.

All of this is happening while the fight between Kaido and Yamato is supposedly going on, yet Oda has been skirting around actually showing it. It could be that he plans on not showing the fight itself, but rather the final outcome. This could mean that in a tragic twist, Yamato could fall at the hands of his father and never leave Onigashima. This would be extremely cruel, especially for such a fan-favorite character, but it is a distinct possibility. Unless Oda plans on showing us some of the battle in the next chapter of One Piece, we may not know how it plays out until Luffy makes his return.

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