Well snap, surprise after surprise, I was not expecting that yet it is a development completely logical. An alliance between the Straw Hat Pirates and Capone “Gang” Bege’s crew, the Firetank Pirates, how ludicrously exciting. This was an amazing chapter, so many developments relevant to the direction of the arc and Jinbe showcasing exactly why the Straw Hat Pirates NEED him. His experience, composition, knowledge and understanding of the pirate world have resulted in a plan the Straw Hat Pirates can utilise to foil the Wedding, save the Vinsmoke family members (especially Reiju), escape Big Mom’s territory and possibly establish a lasting alliance. Jinbe has created an opportunity for the Straw Hat Pirates to genuinely challenge Big Mom and her crew.
I had expected that the Straw Hat Pirates would exploit the plans of Capone Bege to stop the wedding by I did not see an alliance being formed, one brokered by Jinbe. It makes sense though, in order to take down the Yonko, alliances need to be made, especially when it concerns the Eleven Supernovas who are some of the main threats towards the Yonko. Some Supernovas have chosen to operate differently in the New World compared to Luffy who has decided to directly oppose the Yonko. Those Supernovas have opted to ally themselves with a Yonko but deep within the shadows, they are likely scheming towards eventually taking them down.
The alliances may not always work but as the old saying goes ‘the enemy of my enemy is my friend’, so despite the differences between the two parties, there is value in compromising to achieve an common goal. Capone Bege may not be an example of an upstanding human being but currently with the Straw Hat Pirates in a bind and up against the complete might of a Yonko, they need whatever advantages and allies they can get. Capone Bege is their answer.
Based on Jinbe’s comments of the Sweet Ministers only being the tip of the iceberg of Big Mom’s forces, one can reasonably conclude that Big Mom has stronger subordinates under her command. If the Sweet Ministers aren’t Big Mom’s elite force, then the Big Mom Pirates won’t be defeated in this arc and the climatic battle will likely take place when all of the Straw Hat Pirates have gathered. If this is the case though, will Jinbe and Sanji have opponents to be highlighted against in battle this arc? This is both of their reintroduction arc and logically the focus should be centered around them in both the story and battle (Luffy is the exception for obvious reasons). If the Sweet Ministers aren’t the main forces of Big Mom, does this mean that Jinbe and Sanji will likely be matched up against the remaining two Sweet Ministers? With five hours left until the Wedding ceremony, Smoothie and Katakuri seem like the only opponents left on Wholecake Island that could challenge Jinbe and Sanji. No other Elite forces of Big Mom have been introduced yet.
If Jinbe is referring to third parties representing the bottom of the ‘iceberg’ he spoke off and Big Mom not having a stronger force within her crew beyond the Sweet Ministers, then I cannot see the Big Mom Pirates continuing to serve as antagonist within a future arc. The Big Mom Pirates are the primary antagonist of this arc which is taking place within the heart of Big Mom territory. If there are stronger forces within the crew, where have they been up until now? Sailing? Plundering? Politics?
Could the guests attending the Wedding Ceremony end up helping Big Mom or will they cut their losses and severe relations with Big Mom once they find out the enemies she has made are too fierce for her to handle. Will Big Mom’s defeat be a spectacle for all the underworld to witness? And if Big Mom is defeated in this arc, what new enemies will the Straw Hat Pirates make? What about prospective allies? Looking forward to the next chapter!