Who Is Luffy’s Girlfriend?

    Luffy is quite the ladies man, despite showing no interest in women at all. So, will he ever get a girlfriend?

    Look, I’m not even a fanatical One Piece fan, but I know that no one is actually questioning who Luffy’s girlfriend is. Like, this is the one Shounen series where romance was never even a subplot in the actual story, let alone a defining point. But I get it. As a hopeless romantic that is still salty about wasted pairings in Shounen (Ichigo x Rukia you will always be famous!) I love shipping characters, even when there isn’t much time for romance in the first place. 

    So, who is Luffy’s girlfriend? Well, I can tell you she’s nonexistent. Monkey D. Luffy doesn’t have a girlfriend in One Piece. At least, not yet anyways. Sure, Boa Hancock has always been his self-proclaimed wife and what not. And yeah, he’s had other women show interest in him in the past, but it’s never gone beyond that. Why? Well, have you seen the kid? He’s very single minded in his goal of becoming Pirate King, to the point where I genuinely believe he doesn’t register romantic relationships at all. Platonic ones though, now those are a completely different ball game. 

    Relationships are important in the world of One Piece, and specifically in Luffy’s circle. He is very big on friendship, as you can see with how tightly knit the Straw Hat Pirates Crew is. But I don’t think Luffy would ever actually entertain a romantic relationship when he’s so dedicated to becoming the King Of The Pirates. To him, life is all about food, friends and adventuring in far off waters. Giving him a girlfriend would only distract from that. 

    Though Luffy has female crewmembers aboard his ship, and they are his friends, he’s never really shown an active interest in any of them beyond the platonic connotations. Maybe even familial, because the crew is very close to each other. Yes, there have been attempts like with Boa and even Uta, the main antagonist of One Piece: Red who happens to be Red-Haired Shank’s daughter. But let’s explore why Luffy doesn’t have a girlfriend in a round of Lore Analysis

    No, Luffy Isn’t Dating Anyone:

    Monkey D Luffy

    I don’t even want to drag this one out because if anyone has ever watched One Piece, they know Luffy isn’t the type of protagonist to even notice women around him. Or well, notice them in that way. Because obviously, he does have plenty of friends who are female presenting and that’s basically it. But actual romance? That’s more complicated

    Although, it isn’t because of a lack of options. If Luffy wanted a girlfriend, it’s not like he couldn’t get one. Plenty of women have shown interest in our plucky protagonist, from the illegitimate child of the person who inspired him to become a Pirate in the first place to the literal Empress of an Amazonian Race. And the latter isn’t even the only member of royalty that is interested in him. Nefertari Vivi, princess of the Arabista Kingdom, has also shown affection for Luffy. So, what gives here? Well, the clear truth is the fact that Luffy doesn’t really care for a love interest. 

    Luffy is only 17 years old, first of all. And yet he’s the leader of an entire crew that is now considered one of the most notorious to sail the high seas. He is adamant about realizing his dreams, and he doesn’t have the time or patience to focus on anything else. The man has been kissed by multiple characters at this rate, and he still can’t find it in himself to care. That’s not to say he doesn’t have deep bonds with some of his female friends. Him and Nami go way back, and he regards Nico Robin highly enough to make her a senior officer in the Straw Pirates Grand Fleet

    But Luffy probably won’t be getting a girlfriend anytime soon. Again, this doesn’t mean we won’t ever see him settle down. But that’s probably something that will be revealed in the epilogue of the manga, which is very far away. 

    Shounen Protagonists Aren’t Known For Romantic Developments:

    Luffy Nami

    So, I’m sure we’ve seen a pattern here. At least with the previous Big 3, a coalition of Shounen series that streamlined anime in the west, there wasn’t a heavy focus on romantic interests. Sure, they had surface level interactions here and there, and the romance is mainly played up as a comedic thing, later to be forgotten. But that doesn’t mean they never get a romantic partner. 

    Only, I’ve always felt that it’s very rushed. Which is fair, Shounen is never about romance after all. There isn’t any time to cover those kinds of developments in a high paced plot like with Naruto Shippuden or even Bleach. The story are the highlights here. Which is why a lot of Shounen fans tend to feel like a relationship came from left field, like with Dragon Ball. Sometimes, the relationship needs additional content to feel natural, like with Naruto Uzumaki and Hinata Hyuuga. Or sometimes, they are just plain wrong. (Again Bleach, how do you drop the ball that hard?)

    But that’s why I’ve been enjoying how things have changed in the recent decade. I mean, just look at Demon Slayer and the relationship between Tanjiro Kamado and Kanao Tsuyuri. The plot was so hectic, yet the series found the time to develop meaningful interactions between those two and really provide a foundation for both of them getting together later on. And when they did end up married, it made it that much more satisfying. Genuinely, Demon Slayer did romance so well for a Shounen

    Look, I’m not asking for huge gestures of romance, it’s not like I expect a Shojou when I read a Shounen series. But then, I wouldn’t mind if Shounen didn’t introduce romance as a plot point at all, like with Jujutsu Kaisen. Unless, of course, you’re delusional like me and count Geto x Gojo as a valid ship. But I digress.

    I guess the lesson here is don’t start reading Shounen if you expect a great romantic epic. It doesn’t need that, after all. Especially with something like One Piece. But hey, if you do get one, all the better!

    Anza Qureshi
    Anza Qureshi
    Anza Qureshi is a writer, licensed dentist and certified Uchiha fangirl. When she isn't doing root canals or listing down anime waifus, you can find her screeching about her favorite JRPGs across social media.

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