I feel like if you were an OG weeb, back in the 2000s, you’re eating pretty good right now. With the return of almost all the Big 3 in some shape or form, it feels like Shonen is back with a vengeance. And with all these returning franchises also comes the reigniting of old rivalries between characters. Fans are once again debating if Son Gohan is finally surpassing his father, Son Goku in Dragon Ball, and much more. But a really heated topic is regarding the return of a certain someone called Shanks in One Piece: Red vs our MC Luffy.
Could our boy, Monkey D. Luffy, finally be stronger than his childhood idol, Red-Haired Shanks? Honestly, it depends on who you ask! As of currently in the manga, it feels like Luffy might finally have the upper hand on Shanks, solely based on the fact that he defeated Kaidou Of The Beasts, a Yonko-level pirate. Couple that up with his new Gear 5 transformation and things look pretty neck to neck between Shanks and Luffy. And that’s excluding the plot armor.
But hey, that just how the Shonen formula works! The protagonist is obviously going to be the strongest fo them all by the end of their series. However, how they get there, is the journey we’re tuning in for. And after more than 2 decades, we are seeing Luffy slowly become the Pirate he always strived to be. He might not be there 100%, but he’s close. And so, it’s no surprise that one of the people he’ll eventually have to face is the person that inspired him in the first place.
I mean, Shanks hasn’t exactly slacked behind since their first fateful meeting either. He went on to become part of the Four Emperors. He’s a Yonko in his own right, commandeering control over a huge chunk of the New World. So, how does the Shanks of now rank up against Gear 5 Luffy? Let’s discuss that in Character Versus – where we take two of the most trending characters right now and see who comes out on top!
Table of Contents
Red-Haired Shanks: Ruling The New World!
There’s a lot that could be said about Shanks, and probably the best thing about him is the fact that he’s the only Yonko that isn’t outright vicious towards Luffy. In fact, he seems to be constantly supporting him. But that doesn’t mean he can’t definitely hold his own in a battle.
After all, he’s insanely strong, rivaled in strength by the likes of Big Momma and even going toe-to-toe with the likes of Whitebeard. And he accomplished all that he did at an insanely young age when compared to the rest of the Four Emperors. Despite his jovial nature, Shanks isn’t just some paltry background character, he’s front and center as one of the most powerful people in the franchise.
Not only is he an exceptionally skilled swordsman, directly rivaling Dracule Mihawk who is known as the best swordsman in the world, but he’s immensely fast. This helps him adapt to fighting much quicker and enables him to utilize his strengths to the max. Let’s not also forget that he is one of the only people in the world to use all 3 types of Haki, with extreme proficiency in Conqueror’s Haki.
Monkey D. Luffy: More Than Just A Protagonist!
So, how does someone like our dear old Luffy rank up against Shanks? Honestly, not too shabbily. Luffy has grown since he first met Shanks as a child and unknowingly consumed a Devil Fruit, the Gomu Gomu No Mi. With personal training from Silvers Rayleigh, who was the first mate of the Pirate King, Luffy is heading up.
Even if you put away the whole deal with the Hito Hito No Mi, Model: Nika that gives him the powers of a God, and how he’s one of the strongest Pirates at just age 19, there is the whole thing about him being the main character. He’s earned Gear 5 and defeated Kaidou, and he’s well on his way to becoming the new Pirate King himself.
He’s creative, adaptable and fights with honor. Definitely rivaling Shanks easily.
Luffy Vs Shanks Winner – Luffy!
Look, he has plot armor. As the main character of the franchise, of course he will become stronger than Shanks, possibly everyone else too.
That’s just how his journey will fold out. And even as we speak, Luffy is just a cut above the rest!