One Piece's Creator May Have Introduced the Missing Rocks Pirates Years Ago

As One Piece continues through to new arcs and new reveals, fans have seen how series creator Eiichiro Oda has paid almost an inhuman level of attention to detail in terms of foreshadowing future events of the series. Before moving on with the third act of the Wano Country arc, Oda revealed some of the biggest bombshells in the series thus far by unveiling a long lost group of dangerous pirates, the Rocks Pirates, which featured the combined strength of the Four Emperors in their younger years with a Captain with the strength to rival Gol D. Roger.

But as noted by @Vulcan_D_Artist on Twitter, Oda might have actually introduced members of the missing Rocks Pirates during the Thriller Bark arc of the series as a few of the zombies Gecko Moria had control of. It's certainly an interesting theory, but not outside of the reality of the kinds of planning and foresight Oda is known for.

In Chapter 957 of the series, Sengoku reveals the Rocks Pirates not only had a young Whitebeard, Big Mom, and Kaido among the ranks, but also previously unnamed legendary pirates such as "The Golden Lion, Silver Axe, Captain John, Wang Zhi" who all went to make a name for themselves. As @Vulcan_D_Artist theorizes, three of the notable zombie designs in Chapter 452 of the series could potentially line-up with The Golden Lion, Silver Axe, and John names. Although this is conjecture, it is a strong argument.

Whether or not this turns out to be the case, it wouldn't be too far off to suspect that Moria had access to each of these powerful zombies. His intention was to gather the corpses of the strongest pirates and warriors out there to strengthen his army, such as Oars, so Oda just might have revealed three of the Rocks' crew had ended up in Moria's possession.

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Oda has demonstrated in the past his ability to plant smaller details and hints that come to fruition in a much larger sense later in the series, and with the Rocks Pirates' introduction fans might get to see more of them in detail in a future chapter. This theory just might end up being confirmed as another example of a small hint Oda put into the series long before revealing it in full nearly 500 chapters later.

Eiichiro Oda's One Piece first began serialization in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump in 1997. It has since been collected into over 80 volumes, and has been a critical and commercial success worldwide with many of the volumes breaking printing records in Japan. The manga has even set a Guinness World Record for the most copies published for the same comic book by a single author, and is the best-selling manga series worldwide with over 430 million copies sold. The series still ranked number one in manga sales in 2018, which surprised fans of major new entries.