“One Piece Would End In A Year”: Eiichiro Oda Has The Best Praise For One Of The Series’ Strongest Characters

Luffy looking sad dressed in his egghead outfit with akainy sitting on a chair with his arms crossed as seen in the digitally colored manga in one piece with stills from the marineford arc in the background


Oda indirectly praised Akainu’s strength, revealing that an overpowered protagonist like him could bring the series to an end in a year.
Despite his absence in One Piece since Marineford, Akainu remains Luffy’s most formidable foe, promising a tense rematch in the future.

The introduction of an overpowered ability like Gear Five that could rival Akainu’s brute force signals One Piece is truly winding up to an end.

Despite making nary an appearance since the Summit War, Fleet Admiral Akainu poses an unquestionable threat in One Piece and Oda may have already given his character the best praise possible. For the longest time, One Piece‘s admirals were the strongest front the Marines had to offer, with Akainu easily being the scariest of the lot, and an old interview with Oda reveals Akainu may be even stronger than fans gave him credit for.

A common misconception that has been circulating among fans for years is that according to Oda, Akainu could find the One Piece in a year if he wished to. This is a misunderstanding because Eiichiro Oda has never said anything of the sort, with his original comment being skewed and taken out of context by fans due to a mistranslation. The comment originally stems from an interview published in the Sound & Recording Magazine in 2012 where Oda talks about the need to ensure a protagonist isn’t too strong.

So, when you create a protagonist in manga, it is not a good idea to make him too strong. For example, if Akainu became the protagonist, he is so strong that ONE PIECE would come to an end within a year.

— Eiichiro Oda to Yautaka Nakata in the Sound & Recording Magazine, 2012.

Oda then uses Akainu as an example, stating that the series wouldn’t last a year with a protagonist as powerful as Akainu. As such, the point Oda truly intended to make wasn’t that Akainu would be able to complete Luffy’s journey much faster or that One Piece is easy to find. Instead, he meant that One Piece‘s story would simply not be enjoyable with an overly powerful protagonist like Akainu plowing through every obstacle in his path through sheer brute force.

In a shocking anime-only scene, one of One Piece’s deadliest characters made short work of a powerful foe that previously gave Gear 4 Luffy trouble.

One Piece’s Strongest Character Is Stuck Behind A Desk

Akainu Could Still Prove to Be Luffy’s Toughest Opponent

Akainu in his magma form with abdomen turning to magma
Akainu with his left side engulfed in magma Front view of Akainu in his magma form
Shanks stops Akainu from attacking Koby in One Piece One Piece's Admiral Akainu looking angry while smoking a cigar

Even with the introduction of the Pacifista and the Seraphim, Akainu continues to be an antagonist fans are both dreading and excited to see again. Unfortunately, Akainu’s decision to become the Fleet Admiral appears to have come back to bite him in the worst way possible. His position has tied him down to his desk instead of allowing him to actively fight against crime and piracy as he desired.

Though Akainu has been largely absent from the story since the events at Marineford, Oda’s comment reaffirms just how powerful he truly is and confirms that he could very well overturn the series at any point should he get out from behind his desk. In that sense, perhaps his new desk job is holding him back until it is time for Luffy’s eventual rematch against him.

Even though Luffy has gotten much stronger since defeating Kaido at Wano, and has been able to overpower Admiral Kizaru with relative ease, Akainu may be an entirely different matter. Akainu was Luffy’s strongest enemy who left him on the brink of death during Marineford. As such, up until the revelation of Gear Five, the thought of Luffy encountering him again still managed to strike pure dread into fans and it is difficult to anticipate how a potential rematch between them could play out.

Gear Five Signals One Piece is Ending Soon

Luffy in episode 1101

If anything, Oda’s comment about Akainu can be taken to mean that One Piece is truly nearing its end. While Luffy has always been the clear underdog in the series thus far, since awakening the Nika Fruit and defeating Kaido there are only a few who can pose a real threat to Luffy. Gear Five is overpowered in every sense of the word and this only means that the final leg of the race to Laugh Tale could end up being much quicker than fans may have expected.

Overall, One Piece has introduced many powerful villains and antagonists over the years, but only a few have managed to leave a lasting impression like Akainu has. Often touted as one of the most despicable villains in One Piece, Akainu’s existence has faded to the back of fans’ minds, but considering the great praise Oda has for him, his return in the Final Saga is all but guaranteed.