Core points of Gamers


Core points of Gamers

Should Jaguar D Saul Have Survived?

The following contains spoilers for One Piece Chapter 1066 “Ohara’s Will” by Eiichiro Oda, Stephen Paul, and Vanessa Satone, available in English on Viz Media.

Eiichiro Oda is famous for undoing many tragic deaths in One piece. Characters like Pel, Wyper, and Pound seemed to have survived situations where they were almost certainly killed. It annoys fans who feel this cheapens the story and removes a lot of tension. Now a new character has somehow returned to the land of the living, or rather, never left.

Jaguar D. Saul was confirmed to be alive in Chapter 1066, “Ohara’s Will”. Fans are divided on how to feel about it. For one thing, it’s another fake death. On the other hand, this was a particularly beloved character, so seeing him alive again may come as a pleasant surprise. Determining if this was the correct narrative choice will require a look at how it was all laid out.

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What happened to Saul?

Saul “died” in Chapter 397, “Hoping to Reach the Future”, which was set 20 years before the beginning of the ongoing story. While trying to help a young Nico Robin escape from Ohara, he was struck by then-Vice Admiral Kuzan’s Ice Time Capsule; the general assumption was that the giant froze to death. This was one of the most traumatic events in Robin’s young life and one of the most memorable moments in the Enies Lobby Arc.

However, Chapter 1066 heavily implies that Saul survived his encounter with Kuzan. According to Dr. Vegapunk, the books in Ohara’s library were preserved in a lake, collected by giants, and brought to Elbaph. When Vegapunk went to Elbaph to read the texts, there was a mysterious figure covered in bandages; apparently, he was the captain of the giant crew that recovered the books. He didn’t give himself a name, even when Robin asked if he was Saul, but fans are almost sure who he is.

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If it’s Saul, then it would explain why Kuzan used the “attack” he did. Ice Time Capsule must have done exactly what the name suggests and simply froze the giant without killing him. Since Saul and Kuzan were old friends in the Navy, the latter must have wanted to avoid killing the former if he could help it.

It is possible that “Saul’s” bandages recovered from frostbite and other injuries he sustained on that fateful day. Alternatively, the flames from the burning Ohara could have slowly thawed it as they burned it. In any case, the fact that he was injured enough for the audience to assume he died would certainly require bandaging.

How do fans feel about Saul being alive?

One Piece Chapter 1066 Pages 14-15

There are a couple of ways to take the apparent revelation that Saul survived. On the downside, this is another in a long line of fake deaths for One piece. It will be impossible for readers to look back on Robin’s backstory and feel the same way about Saul’s “death” again; it has lost too much of its original meaning and impact. It almost comes off as a bad retcon.

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That being said, perhaps Oda always intended for Saul to do more in the story. Once again, Kuzan’s Ice Time Capsule could have been reasonably intended to preserve his old friend rather than kill him. Saul also needed to tell the other giants about the books, the fate of which was also alluded to in Chapter 397. Assuming the Straw Hat Pirates finally visit Elbaph, Robin will be able to show Saul that he finally found the people he belongs to. , which could be a touching scene in its own right. There’s also the fact that he has an initial D in his name; alive or not, the public needed to learn more about him in this regard. Any further need to seemingly undo Saul’s death will likely be revealed once he formally re-enters the story.

On top of all this, many fans are just as happy as Robin to find out that Saul is alive. Some were quick to point out how Saul could have survived; more often than not, even if a forgery is explained in the story, it is criticized. Others actually wept at the revelation; for them, it’s a touching moment to see Nico Robin so genuinely happy. This is one of the few fake deaths in One piece which most will gladly accept.

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