1 Unexplained Mystery From ‘One Piece’ Live Action Debunked- How Did Roronoa Zoro’s Friend Kuina Die?

1 Unexplained Mystery From 'One Piece' Live Action Debunked- How Did Roronoa Zoro's Friend Kuina Die

One Piece, as one of the most popular and successful manga and anime franchises of all time, recently received the live-action treatment courtesy of Netflix. Audiences approached the series with trepidation, understandable since anime live-action adaptations haven’t fared very well. But reception to this series has been generally positive, especially since it stays mostly faithful to the manga’s storyline while making some intelligent changes.

One Piece, Nami, Luffy and Zoro based on the manga by Eiichiro Oda
One Piece: Nami, Luffy and Zoro

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Backstories play a big part in why characters are after a particular goal, which can be seen in each of the Straw Hat Pirates in particular. Monkey D. Luffy, Nami, Sanji, Usopp and Roronoa Zoro each have an intricate backstory that shapes who they are today, and it’s Zoro’s in particular that has fans talking and theorizing; specifically, his past with his friend Kuina.

How did Kuina die in One Piece?

In both the manga and anime of One Piece, Kuina is a fellow student of the sword alongside Zoro, and while they don’t get off to the best of starts, the two eventually become friends and Kuina is even the reason Zoro wants to become the world’s best swordsman. This is all told through flashbacks, as is the fact that Kuina was the better sword fighter as she always beat him, giving Zoro the motivation to get better.

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Kuina One Piece
Kuina in Netflix’s One Piece

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However, this growing friendship is tragically cut short when it is revealed that Kuina has died off camera by falling down the stairs and dying of the injuries she received. This is where there is a significant divergence in wording compared to Netflix’s One Piece, as Kuina is said to have passed away from an unknown accident. Her death eventually led to Zoro adopting his signature three-sword style since he was left with Kuina’s sword.

In both cases, whether it be the manga/anime or the live-action series, it is a vague cause of death which leaves a lot of unanswered questions and a lot of theories from the fan base.

Could Kuina still be alive?

One of the most discussed One Piece fan theories states that Kuina might actually be alive, having survived whatever happened to her as a child. Furthermore, it even believes that she’s played a significant role in the series to date and that she is actually Tashigi, a Marine who works under Smoker, another Marine who was teased at the end of the first season of the Netflix adaptation. This connection has been made due to the both her Kuina being exactly the same age and having very similar designs, making them look alike, almost like doppelgangers.

Netflix-One Piece based on the manga by Eiichiro Oda
Netflix’s One Piece

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Sadly, One Piece mangaka Eiichiro Oda has poured cold water over this popular theory, saying that Kuina is indeed dead and the design similarities between her and Tashigi are nothing more than coincidence. To further distance the two, Oda gave them different birthdays and even drew a young Tashigi with glasses, something that Kuina has been confirmed to not have had.

Source: The Direct

Written by Madhav

Madhav is an avid gamer, a fan of Virat Kohli's cover drives and loves watching anime. He likes reading fantasy and mystery novels too!