“I didn’t want Luffy to become too much of an adult”: Oda Had One Major But Valid Concern for the One Piece Time Skip

Oda explains why Ace's death was necessary and why the two-year time skip was perfect for the Straw Hats.

One piece Time Skip

SUMMARY

  • Eiichiro Oda explained in an interview that he could not give Luffy more than 2 years of time skip since an adult Luffy would defy the rules of the Shonen genre.
  • He also explained that Ace's death was necessary to push Luffy forward.
  • Only a merry tale would not make One Piece a great story.
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Post the two-year time skip in One Piece, fans saw the Straw Hats come together to take on even bigger struggles than the last time they fought. Eiichiro Oda had delivered a devastating Marineford arc previous to the time skip, and fans welcomed the relief thereafter.

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[This article contains major One Piece spoilers]

Ace’s death proved that Luffy still had a long way to go. They were under no circumstances ready to face the bigshots of the New World or the World Government. In an interview, Oda explained why the time skip was a necessary move.

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The 2 Year Time Skip Played a Huge Role in One Piece

Luffy in One Piece (Credits: Toei Animation)
Luffy in One Piece (Credits: Toei Animation)

After the devastating results of the battle at Marineford, the power scale of the reigning pirates and marine officers became clear as day. Something had to change and jumping from one island to another would not have been sustainable. In an interview, Eiichiro Oda explained:

17-year-old Luffy didn’t stand a chance of beating powerful threats like the Four Emperors. So I gave him and his crew two much-needed years to grow physically and mentally.

But why only two years? Was it enough time for the Straw Hats to catch up to the rest of the world? Oda has given excellent reasoning behind that as well.

Their reunion took place after only two years because I didn’t want Luffy to become too much of an adult. I had to uphold this series’ integrity as a shonen manga, after all.

Shonen protagonists are rarely ever adults. The majority of them are teenagers or young adults who are still full of an adventurous spirit. It also helps the young audience connect with the heroes. So, making Luffy older than 19 could have had side effects that Oda did not want to deal with.

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Luffy and his crew tightened their belts and trained until they dropped. In this two-year period, all of them drastically improved, all under different circumstances. (Though the hardest training was reserved for Sanji ft. Kamabakka Island.) The effects of the training were immediately visible in the Fish-Man Island Saga.

Why Ace’s Death Was a Necessary Evil for Luffy in One Piece

Luffy in One Piece
Luffy in One Piece (Credits: Toei Animation)

Eiichiro Oda needed to push Luffy forward and for that, the character had to face a major loss and ordeal. Ace’s death served as the perfect receptacle for Luffy’s growth. The author admitted that Ace’s fate was just as hard on him as it was for Luffy.

Ace’s death was something Luffy and I had to get over together. If the series was all fun and games, it wouldn’t have lasted this long.

Till the Marineford Arc, not many major characters had died and it seemed like a dandy journey. Ace’s death highlighted the fact that the game of pirates and government is too serious to take lightly. The cruelty of the World Government members became glaringly apparent.

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Portgus D. Ace died a tragic death in One Piece
Portgus D. Ace’s death scene in One Piece | Toei

Oda himself admitted that he did not want to draw people dying. What he did want is to draw post-battle feasts. Luffy’s absurd hunger after every battle and his amazing ability to inhale food stand testament to his words.

I mean, how are you supposed to have a good time after someone just died? Those feasts are my ideal image of friendship.

He further claims that he would like to end One Piece with a massive feast. The end of a long journey celebrated with food with Luffy and his beloved nakama, can you really ask for anything more?

You can read One Piece on Viz Media and watch the anime on Crunchyroll.

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Written by Aaheli Pradhan

Articles Published: 240

Aaheli is an anime content writer at FandomeWire. With four years of experience under her belt, she is a living, breathing encyclopedia for anime and manga. She believes in living a slow life, surrounded by incomplete art projects and her beloved cat.