Immense is the obstacle before the next generation yet impossible is something it is not. Unbeknownst to the Yonko before them, the conviction behind the next generation’s acts carries the belief and capability that a possibility which should be improbable is entirely within reach. And in no small part is the underestimation of their abilities playing a part in seeing the pillars of the New World toppled. The Yonko have continually looked down on their younger rivals allowing for a blindspot within the Yonko’s perception of possibility to conjure itself. The lack of expectation and belief the Yonko have in their opponents capabilities will ultimately lead to their eventual downfall.
First and foremost, Zoro, he was not messing around. From deflecting Kaido’s Demolition Gust with a one-armed slash of his blade to splitting Kaido’s Blast Breath in half to assisting Luffy and opening the space for him to unleash his attack with Enma. Ultimately, Zoro’s lack of control over Enma prevented him from landing his attack on Kaido. Zoro still managed to slice the Onigashima Skull horn though which may have relevance going forward. Both Kaido and Linlin had shivers of fear course through their mind. Both Yonko were in shock at how much they had underestimated Zoro. Kaido in particular reacted to the aura he sensed in Enma. The aura of Oden. An aura that reignited feelings of dread within his soul. Big Mom in turn sensed the danger Zoro posed and took the opportunity of Zoro being in a vulnerable position to attack him with Zeus.
I am surprised Killer was able to damage Kaido given the lack of focus he has received throughout this arc as a significant fighter. But it really does look like that with his Punisher blades, he is able to utilise attacks that increases his fighting capabilities. His comment to Zoro about losing to him because he didn’t have his Punishers may not have been an hollow claim as it initially appeared. The Punishers seem to be able to create sound waves that Killer is able to use to attack an enemy. This allowed Killer to position himself on Kaido’s back to launch an attack that vibrated through Kaido’s body damaging Kaido’s insides. This style of fighting also explains how Killer was able to deduce the weakness of Apoo’s abilities before he conveyed it to Kid, Luffy and Zoro. Beyond his Scyther Sonic ability, what other sonic/sound based attacks does Killer have?
Kid has been strangely disappointing within this battle. For having a Devil Fruit ability that can control magnetism, Kid is certainly limiting himself in how he is utilising it. Surely, rather than clumping the metal he collected together to create a metal extension of himself to attack by punching and throwing, he can instead use him magnetism on the metal he collected to bind, constrict, obscure, and surround his opponents? It could be that the Devil Fruit Kid has doesn’t allow him such versatility but compared to Luffy, Law and Zoro, Kid’s attacking style and abilities seems incredibly underwhelming. Hopefully Kid is saving his secret attacks for later in the fight when the Next Generation are backed into a corner.
Despite what Law said, he has been slowly embracing his role as support within the battle. Thanks to his abilities, he is able to change the battleground and create opportunities of attack for the other Next Generation members. Similar to how Law used Luffy against Doflamingo in Dressrosa, he can use the other fighters present on the battlefield against the Yonko. Zoro was able to get an opportunity to attack thanks to Law. Kaido was hit by Law’s Gamma Knife which should be destroying Kaido’s internal organs but throughout the remainder of the chapter, there isn’t much indication that the Gamma Knife attack, Law’s strongest ability, had any long term damage on Kaido. Is this due to Law not piercing through Kaido’s dragon skin? Or because Law was wrong in his assessment of where a heart would be located in a Dragon? Or because of Kaido’s durability? Or because of Kaido genetics? Could the Gamma Knife attack work slower on someone like Kaido and only come into play later in the battle when it appears the Next Generation members are overwhelmed? However the situation turns out, Law will be integral in breaking down Kaido’s durability.
At the end of the chapter, it appeared as if Law was hit by Big Mom’s lightning but given how Law was portrayed – with his face out of sight, I wonder if he pulled his Dressrosa switch again here. With the previous battle against the Beast Pirates having taken place moments before Luffy and Co. arrived, there should be bodies of the defeated Beast Pirate members still on top of the Onigashima Skull. Could Law have switched himself with one of the Beast Pirate members to avoid Big Mom’s lightning and fool them into believing that they have defeated him? It would be spectacular if Law takes advantage of the situation to catch Kaido and Big Mom by surprise.
Luffy revealing his immunity to electricity to Big Mom was magnificent. The look on Linlin’s face, how hilarious. She just realised that one of her strongest abilities and “weapon’s” had no effect on Luffy. Flashes of Enel naturally arose within the mind. “I’m made of rubber” and the resulting reaction, it was glorious. Immensely glorious. Luffy goes on to tank Kaido’s Blast Breath forcing Kaido to question if fire is also ineffective against Luffy. The doubt creeping into the Yonko’s mind regarding the opponents in front of them who they initially thought were fodder is quite the sight to see. Luffy answers Kaido’s fear with his determination and a barrage of Gear Fourth Haki imbued Kong Gatling punches. To think, Kaido’s statement of his opponents not being just mindless fools who rely on guts to win would come back to reflect the opponents now pressuring him. Kaido and Big Mom may have met other ambitious pirates before but they have never met such fools as the ones now challenging them.
Given the focus Zoro has received and the fear Big Mom and Kaido have against Oden’s aura, I am curious to learn if Oda plans to delve into Yamato’s admiration of Oden more. Will he reveal Yamato’s interest in the Oden Nitoryu style? And will Momonosuke give Yamato his Ame no Habikiri sword? With Zoro and Yamato, there may be a repeat of what happened twenty years ago when Kaido was on the brink of defeat after being slashed by Oden, who represents one of the few people Kaido acknowledges could challenge him.
Kaido is clearly the focus of Luffy, Law, Kid, Zoro and Killer’s attacks but they have been ignoring Big Mom a bit too much. Shouldn’t one of them focus on Big Mom to avoid her interrupting the others battle against Kaido? Two Yonko at once does seem a high mountain to climb but I wonder if new allies will appear shortly to assist the battle against the Yonko. Looking forward to the next chapter.