The long-awaited One Piece Film: Red is almost here and will surely add more information to the lore of One Piece. Not only will the movie reveal more about Shanks, but it will also focus on his daughter. Despite being a significant character in the series, he remains one of the most mysterious characters — even after over 1000 chapters. So here’s a brief rundown of what we do know about Shanks so far.
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Also known as “Red-Haired Shanks” or “Red Hair,” Shanks is the captain of the Red Hair Pirates and one of the Four Emperors. As an Emperor, many recognize him as one of the strongest pirates in the world. His primary weapon is a sword named Gryphon. Aside from his hair, another noticeable aspect about him is the set of scars on his left eye, which he apparently received from series antagonist Marshall D. Teach — better known as Blackbeard.
At nine years old, Shanks was one of the crew members of the legendary Roger Pirates, where he donned Luffy’s now-iconic straw hat — originally Gol D. Roger’s. He was an apprentice of the crew alongside Buggy, who also goes on to become another notorious pirate. One Piece Film: Red has revealed the surprising fact that Shanks has a daughter named Uta.
Shanks and Luffy
Shanks is a character of great importance in the series, especially since he was the one who inspired Luffy to become a pirate. During Luffy’s childhood, Shanks served as a role model. The Red Hair Pirates briefly stayed in Foosha Village, Luffy’s hometown. At first, Shanks didn’t take Luffy’s goals seriously due to his age. However, after an incident where Luffy stood up for Shanks against mountain bandits, he started taking Luffy’s dream seriously. In addition, Shanks and his crew stole the Gomu Gomu no Mi (Gum-Gum Fruit) prior to Luffy eating it.
Shanks also saved Luffy from a Sea King, leading to the loss of his left arm. Before the Red Hair Pirates left Foosha, Shanks entrusted his precious straw hat to Luffy. The two made a deal that Luffy would return the hat once he became a great pirate. Throughout the One Piece timeline, Luffy and Shanks have had a few opportunities to meet again, but they have still not reunited. Despite that, the Red Hair Pirates happily watch over Luffy’s development as a pirate.
Strengths and Abilities
Despite being one of the strongest pirates, One Piece creator Eiichiro Oda still has not revealed everything about Shanks’ abilities. One of Shanks’ notable feats is he is one of the few who can use Conqueror’s Haki. He is even the first character in the series to show off Haki, using it when he rescues Luffy from the Sea King. Keep in mind that this was hundreds of chapters before the audience even understood what Haki was. During Shanks’ meeting with Whitebeard, he quickly knocks out several members of Whitebeard’s crew with his Haki. Throughout the story, there are many instances that prove that Shanks’ Conqueror’s Haki is truly something else, even compared to that of other powerful pirates.
Aside from that, he is one of the few pirates who possesses a significant influence over practically everyone. He can interact with pirates, marines, and even the mysterious Five Elders. During the Marineford arc, his mere appearance brought the war to a halt. Aside from blocking Admiral Akainu’s strong magma attack, Shanks’ conversation with then-Fleet Admiral Sengoku resulted in Sengoku officially ending the war. Not only does the Fleet Admiral respect Shanks, but he is even influential enough to have a private meeting with the Five Elders — the highest-ranking Celestial Dragons near the very top of the World Government. Shanks is also highly-skilled with using a sword, as he used to be the rival of Dracule Mihawk, known as the world’s greatest swordsman. Shanks is also incredibly swift, as seen during the Marineford arc when he saves Koby from Akainu in an instant.
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One Piece fans will know of the jokes going around through the years about Shanks finally making a move. In One Piece Chapter 1054, he finally makes said move, claiming that he’s joining the search for the titular One Piece — his former captain’s legendary treasure. In addition to this, despite being in Wano at the same time as Luffy, Shanks still showed no intent of meeting up with him (though some of his crew members wanted to.) While his motives remain relatively unknown, one can only hope the reunion of these two will be iconic. For now, fans will have to settle with getting more questions rather than answers when it comes to the red-haired pirate that started it all.