One Piece's anime has introduced fans to the colorful world of the Wano Country in the last few episodes, but as evidenced already, there's a dark and seedy underbelly thanks to Kaido's presence in the area. But what fans didn't expect to see, however, was that Ace actually has a small tie to Wano's past as he accidentally shipwrecked there long before Luffy and the Straw Hats ever arrived.
This was a bittersweet reveal, however, as the newest addition to the series Otama has been waiting for him all this time. Not knowing he died, Luffy had to break the news to her and it broke her heart.
In Episode 894 of the series, it was revealed that Ace shipwrecked on Wano sometime ago and actually interacted with the people of Otama's village. She developed a close bond with Ace in the time that he spent there, and has been waiting in the ruins of her village, fighting off starvation, in the hopes that he would return. When Luffy finds this out, Otama is keeling over from drinking some polluted water to fight off this starvation.
As she's resting in her master's hands, Luffy bluntly breaks the news to her. He tells Otama that Ace she's waiting for has died. For a fleeting moment, Otama is happy to hear that Luffy knows Ace, but that quickly fades as the news sinks in. She cries out in tears, and calls Luffy a liar, and the overwhelming heartbreak causes her to faint. Her master chastises Luffy for laying it out so bluntly, but Luffy's coming from a place of care.
He wanted to tell her that Ace died so she no longer wasted time waiting in the village for a dead man to return, and that no matter how long she waited it wouldn't have changed the truth. This might have seemed cold given what we learn about Otama and Ace's connection, but Luffy had to make a tough decision in the moment. Him breaking the news to her in such a blunt way might seem to lack delicacy, but Luffy didn't want Otama staying in her terrible place any longer than needed. But it already seems like things are more complicated than that.
What do you think of the way Luffy broke the news to Otama? Are you enjoying One Piece's Wano Country arc in the anime so far? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!
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.