Roronoa Zoro, Vice Captain of the Straw hat pirates, part of the Worst Generation, and all around badass is a fan favorite. In every global fan poll that takes place, he is always included in the top 3.
So, imagine the shockwaves the One Piece community experienced when Zoro Lost one of his eyes. This led to mass speculation and endless debates about the meaning of this change by Oda.
In this article, we will try to answer the question : How did Zoro lose his eye ? In reviewing the most popular theories and speculations about the way Zoro lost his eye, analyzing each one and trying to unravel the truth behind this enduring One Piece enigma.
Get ready and let’s sail !
What Happened To Zoro’s Eye ?
There is very little we know about the circumstances of Zoro losing his eye.
All we know is that during the two-year time skip when he was training with Mihawk, Zoro Lost his eye.
Either intentional or unintentional, that remains to be seen as every fan speculates Oda’s plans with Zoro.
When Did Zoro Lose His Eye ?
Firstly, we’ll refresh our memories regarding the occurrence of this alteration.
There were major character design changes after the time-skip. Luffy ‘s scar, Sanji’s hair, Robin’s complete makeover etc.
However, apart from Luffy, it was only Zoro who had suffered an injury since the last time the Straw hats were together.
Which Chapter Did Zoro Lose His Eye?
In the manga chapter 599, we see that Zoro’s left eye is completely shut and there’s a scar covering it. Since reappearing on Sabaody Archipelago, everyone has been waiting for an explanation for his eye but still there is nothing given to the fans by Oda.
Which Episode Did Zoro Lose His Eye?
A few months later in the anime episode 518, we see Zoro get on the wrong ship and fall asleep. When the ship goes underwater, Zoro cuts the ship in half (Mirroring Mihawk’s introduction to the story) and we are shown that he has lost an eye
Will Zoro Open His Eye?
The number of theories, as expected, regarding this have ballooned up considerably. Now, we take a look at some of them and see if they are able to make sense.
Just A Design
There are a fair few in the One Piece community that believe that there are no hidden meanings behind Zoro’s closed eye.
They believe that Oda did this just to reinvent his character design.
They argue that if Zoro was to open his eye, he would have opened it during the number of life and death situations he found himself in – but he did not.
If Oda suddenly decided that Zoro will open his eye, supposedly for a power up, then that cheapens the weight of the previous grave situations.
Given the attention to fine details the mangaka gives, it would certainly seem out of character for him to suddenly reveal a hidden key to power that could have been accessed previously.
Having said that, if Oda indeed did decide to go down this path, he would write in a way that would look organic and fluid. Hence, this theory is plausible but not conclusive.
Zoro Wanted To Show His Determination
Another theory states that Zoro blinded himself in one eye to show his determination to Dracule Mihawk.
This would not seem out of character for Zoro as he was previously willing to cut off his leg in Little Garden just to fight Mr 3.
We also know that he will go to unfathomable ends to realize his dream of becoming the Greatest Swordsman.
Keeping that aside, it would seem weird that Zoro would have to prove his drive to Mihawk again as he already bowed in front of him to beg him to make him his disciple.
Mihawk, surprised by the humility shown by a prideful warrior, already decided to take him in as a student after being initially disgusted by it.
Thus, a further injury to prove himself again seems absurd and unlikely. This makes this theory slightly lukewarm.
Another theory speculates that Zoro’s scar is Oda juxtaposing him against other characters from the One Piece world with similar attributes.
The most explicit one being Silvers Rayleigh who was the right-hand man of the Pirate King and a swordsman himself: he too has a scar on his eye. So does Red Haired Shanks: An apprentice of Roger, Captain of the Red Haired pirates and a swordsman who could go toe-to-toe with Dracule Mihawk himself back in the day.
Some believe the author drew Zoro with a scarred eye to foreshadow his role in the coming events and the people he is going to surpass. This theory is not the most preposterous but it feels lacking.
That is why it did not get much response.
One of the more popular theories surrounding Zoro’s eye is that he – either himself or at Mihawk’s suggestion – cut his eye in order to enhance his Observation Haki.
We have already seen with characters like Admiral Fujitora, who is blind and has one of the most potent Observation Haki, that decreasing the stimulus intake leads to enhanced senses.
We saw this during Rayleigh training Luffy where he blindfolded him to enable him to “feel” his opponents.
We also saw this during Luffy’s fight with Katakuri where he closed his eyes to see into the future (Advance Observation Haki).
It is reasonable to believe that Zoro went a step further and permanently blinded his eye for better results.
Indeed, we saw during his fight with Pica that his Haki had grown immensely and that his methods, extreme or not, yielded results.
Many believed that the secret behind unlocking Ashura was concealed behind Zoro’s closed eye. In the story so far, Zoro has only used Ashura three times.
All three times he was under incredible physical strain and giving it his all.
This unexplained demon-like figure that he adopts when using this attack befuddled many.
A viable theory put forth stated that it is an innate power to Zoro who can not access it at will. It is only when he can open his injured eye and hone a yet unexplained skill, only then will he be able to use Ashura at will.
This sounds interesting but there is little evidence to support it.
Shiryu Of The Rain
Ever since Luffy’s encounter with Blackbeard at Mock Town, fans knew that they would one day lock horns. With how the story has progressed and how Blackbeard has become one of the main antagonist of One Piece, it is evident that the 2nd in command of both crews would battle too.
Interestingly, Odai decided to give Shiryu the Clear Clear Fruit instead of a new Devil Fruit.
Many have speculated that this is not some random decision but an obstacle for Zoro to overcome. Recall Alabasta, when Zoro was up against Mr 1. He learnt that a great swordsman only cuts what he means to cut and nothing else. It has been theorized that when these two Yonko crews eventually face off, the Commander’s of Blackbeard’s crew will have awakened their Devil Fruits – with Shiryu becoming intangible.
It is then that Zoro will use his scarred eye to see that which can not be seen and finally defeat Shiryu. This feasible theory has a lot of fans excited.
It is surprising that Zoro is the only Straw hat (excluding Brook) whose parents have not been revealed nor where his dream of becoming the Greatest Swordsman began.
However, the Wano arc has made heavy implications about his heritage. During the Raid on Onigashima, many characters state the similarities between Zoro and Ryuma (the zombie Zoro fought at Thriller Bark). One character recalls that Ryuma too was a one eyed swordsman.
Along with Ryuma, Zoro is heavily linked with Shimotsuki Oshimaru, the Daimyo of Ringo who fell to Kaido. In a Yamato flashback, we can see that his eye is also covered with bandages due to an injury. Many argue that Oda designed this resemblance to imply Zoro’s lineage. Whether or not it’s true, only time will tell. But for now, it is just an interesting theory.
How Did Zoro Lose His Eye ? Final words :
As you can see, we took a deep dive to show some of the main and realistic theories about zoro and his eye.
Personally, the theory about parallelism makes more sense for me and it can work in synergy with the theory about zoro’s lineage.
I vote for this.
And for you friend, how did Zoro lose his eye ?