It’s on! The clash between two monstrous pirates has began and the stage is the Prisoner Mines. You can bet though that Luffy will be incorporated into the fight given Kid and Killer’s lives being on the line. You can also bet that Luffy will attract Linlin and Queen’s chagrin once he reveals that there is no O-Shiruko left because he ate it all up. The glorious, unexpected and unknown thorn in both their sides will continue to distress their egos.
Linlin is seemingly indirectly assisting the Straw Hat Pirates but the tides will turn shortly once Big Mom recognizes Luffy and that will be enough to jump start the rest of her memories allowing her to recall that her primary objective is to destroy Straw Hat Luffy. Alternatively, could Linlin continue to be affected by the amnesia and carry on assisting the Straw Hat Pirates throughout Wano Kuni? If this is the case, when would Linlin regain her memories? At the end of arc, before the start of the Elbaf Arc? During the Elbaf Arc? Given the Big Mom Pirates presence within the arc and their position just outside Wano Kuni, I feel they will eventually be intertwined within the story threads of this arc. This would more so be the case if they currently have Jinbe and the Fishman Pirates imprisoned within the book prison of Mont d’Or. Whatever happens though, chances are low that Linlin will continue being amnesiac. The story requires her to regain her hate for Luffy and follow up with the hatred that drove her to Wano Kuni. Luffy in turn will need to earn his Fifth Emperor title by battling “equally” against the Yonko, both Linlin and Kaido.
Once again Sanji is being forced to conflict with Zoro to draw out the humourous relationship between the two but unfortunately for Sanji the stance he is made to approach the humour from is severely disadvantaged against him given his minimal stakes within the matters concerned surrounding the attempted humour. Sanji, rather than having an environment to rebound his humour off, sadly has to operate within a context where the type of humour being pushed isn’t necessary or sufficiently warranted. Sanji currently has no relevance in Hiyori’s story. It doesn’t feel right for Sanji at this point in the story to play a part in Hiyori’s story as her main Straw Hat Pirate relation is Zoro and Oda-sensei is clearly planning to develop the relationship between those two further.
Sanji conveying his annoyance with the events taking place by internally voicing that even with a lower bounty, Zoro is able to befriend a beautiful lady illustrates how one-dimensional Sanji’s focus has become now that he has a higher bounty than Zoro. Rather than Sanji expecting to be better than Zoro because of his temporary higher bounty, Sanji should instead justify why he has a higher bounty by focusing on being useful much like how he was during the Alabasta Arc, the Ennies Lobby Arc, the Dressrosa Arc and the Totto Land Arc. Sanji wasn’t even in the full Dressrosa Arc but his contributions during the arc were key in pathing the victory over Doflamingo and the Donquixote Pirates. Sanji did what only he could, he saved Viola from her agonizing situation and revived hope within her heart. Viola in turn was paramount in the subsequent events that followed that led to Doflamingo’s defeat and the liberation of the Dressrosa people. While I personally don’t believe Sanji deserves his current high bounty, especially one greater than Zoro, I understand why Oda-sensei did it and I look forward to Sanji proving why he is worth such a bounty. Sanji has so much potential, all he has to do is use it. And Sanji, it’s time to accept that you are a Vinsmoke.
With Hawkins holding Law’s crew members lives hostage through his Strawman ability, it seems hopeless for said crew members to come out alive if Hawkins is truly against Law and the Straw Hat Pirates. Which leads me to believe that Hawkins is not wholeheartedly supporting Kaido. Like the rest of the Supernovas we’ve seen utilising status to further their own agenda, I believe Hawkins, Apoo, Drake and the rest of the Supernovas all act according to their own personal agenda’s and goals. Neither of them are completely superseding themselves to a Yonko. Law may come to find that out now, but what appears to me to be probable is that at some point Hawkins will turn on the Beast Pirates.
It will be interesting to find out whether Luffy heads for the lever to lift Kid and Killer up or whether he engages with Queen and Big Mom to buy the others enough time to save Kid and Killer and free the remaining prisoners within the whole mines. Very much looking forward to the next chapter.