Monkey D. Luffy’s battle against Charlotte Katakuri is one of the most memorable fights in the One Piece series. One of the longest too, 20 episodes ( episode 831 to 871).
Fans eagerly awaited the moment when Luffy would face off against one of the strongest members of the Big Mom Pirates, and when it finally happened, it did not disappoint.
In this article, we’ll explore the episode in which Luffy emerged victorious against Katakuri, using a combination of Gear Fourth and his unwavering determination.
Read on to learn about the key moments in the battle, Luffy’s strategies, and the significance of the fight in the series.
Background of Luffy and Katakuri
If you remember the premise of the Whole Cake Island arc, it was basically all of the political drama unfolding into a big war with the Charlotte and Vinsmoke families getting at each other’s throats and with Capone Bege’s family plotting an assassination attempt on Big Mom in a temporary alliance with the Straw Hats, this was pure Game of Thrones style backstabbing in anime history!
Not only that, if you remember that the Charlotte Family also planned to assassinate Sanji, which failed, and the Straw Hats retaliated.
Katakuri and his sister Brulee captured the Thousand Sunny and the former wanted to kill Luffy to prevent him from becoming a major threat to the Charlotte Family’s ambition.
Once the Sanji Retrieval Team was making their way towards the ship, they were ambushed by the two and Luffy grabbed the Sweet Commander by the head and went into the Mirror-World (via Brulee’s ability) to initiate the final showdown.
Luffy’s motivation for the fight
If you’ve been following One Piece for a long period of time, you would know that when it comes to protecting his friends and things close to him, Luffy becomes a beast.
He certainly doesn’t want to repeat what happened with Ace to his crew members. Seeing as he had to rescue Sanji after the latter had made amends with his Captain, Luffy was determined to rescue him from the clutches of the Big Mom family at any cost.
Not only that, in order to become the strongest pirate there is, he has to eliminate every single Yonko in his way to make it to the top, another factor which counts for Luffy having to fight Katakuri.
Every time Luffy would fight tougher enemies like Doflamingo, Enel and Crocodile, he would go stronger and Luffy was not one to shy away from this path.
Katakuri’s past and character traits
Katakuri is the second son of Big Mom and the eldest triplet brother of Daifuku and Oven. He is also one of the Three Sweet Commanders and one of the strongest soldiers of Big Mom’s army.
He generally got along very well with every sibling but is particularly close with Brulee.
His characteristic feature is the pelican-eel-like mouth that he has due to eating doughnuts to such an extent that his mouth got artificially enlarged. He was made fun of and bullied by the general public but he simply beat them up.
Once he found out that Brulee received a scar in order to get revenge for the beating they received from him, Katakuri severely beat them up and covered his mouth with a cloth all the time in order to protect his family.
He is a calm, serious and diligent man who is determined to protect his family at all costs. Although he is quick and efficient to eliminate threats, he is an honorable man and absolutely hates receiving any type of help or assistance from anyone during a fight just as he received from Flampe during his fight with Luffy.
One notable trait of his is that he takes regular light meal breaks known as merienda to cope with the stresses of his position AND gets visibly annoyed or at times becomes murderous when interrupted as it is an important part of the routine for him, which he partakes in utmost secrecy.
Comparison of their fighting styles
Both Katakuri and Luffy are extremely formidable fighters who use hand-to-hand combat along with their Devil Fruit powers as well as the utilization of Haki.
Another fact is that both have mastery over all three forms of Haki with Katakuri specializing in Advanced Observation Haki as he is famous for predicting a few seconds into the future and making him one of the most formidable opponents for anyone to face.
Katakuri has mastery over his Trident Mogura as well and is an extremely skilled marksman as well.
Luffy, however, utilizes his sheer willpower and tactics to overcome his opponents and uses nothing but his two fists along with Devil Fruit and Haki abilities.
Speaking of Devil Fruits, Luffy has the Gomu Gomu no Mi whereas Katakuri has the Mochi Mochi no Mi both of which are of Paramecia nature.
Key Moments in the battle
This fight is one of the most memorable and action-packed battle sequences the series has.
We will be discussing below some of the key moments the fight has to offer from the Sweet Commander’s advantage all the way to the Final Clash of the two warriors.
If you want to know more about the batte, check our article « How did Luffy beat Katakuri? »
Katakuri’s early dominance
The fight was initiated once the Sanji Retrieval Team were trying to escape and Katakuri managed to track them down. Luffy, coming up with intuition, made him along with himself travel towards the Mirror-World where the battle would begin.
At first, he would use his Hawk Gatling which would be overpowered by his opponent’s Mochi tendrils, which would harden into fists and pummel Luffy.
Since Luffy believed that Rubber would always beat Mochi, he decided to try using the Elephant Gun but Katakuri made an even larger fist and pushed him to the wall with tremendous power.
Luffy tried to escape but Katakuri used his trident Mogura to eliminate him once and for all, in the midst of this, the latter noted that Luffy was able to dodge his attacks faster than anyone and revealed his awakening Devil Fruit Powers, trapping him in the surrounding mochi.
Luffy’s use of Gear Fourth
Since Katakuri was getting tired of this fight, as it was interrupting his merienda, he turned most of his surrounding environment in the Mirror-World into Mochi and trapped Luffy in it, suffocating him in the process and hoping that he would be defeated.
He then created a house filled with Mochi and began to eat doughnuts.
Luffy ate all of the Mochi surrounding him and managed to infiltrate his mochi-filled house and land a kick on his face, severely damaging him.
The two then resumed their battle and Luffy activated Gear 4 to overcome Katakuri.
The two were evenly matched and each of them landed a severe blow to one another with Luffy using his Gear 4 Kong Gun to counter his attacks.
In the midst of the battle, Katakuri noticed that Luffy’s Observation Haki was improving and was dodging him constantly thanks to this and Katakuri’s habit of telling his opponent their next move.
Once Luffy had returned to recharge from his previous usage of Gear 4, he quickly tried to finish him off with his MochiTsuki, a devastating attack from Katakuri’s Awakened Form of Devil Fruit but he became suspicious of Luffy suddenly losing focus and receiving this hit. He found out that his half-sister Flampe shot Luffy in the leg.
This enraged Katakuri and as Luffy got back up one more time, the two released a wave of Conqueror’s Haki to knock out any other interferences in their battle.
Luffy’s Final Attack
Once the two resumed fighting, Luffy activated his Trump Card and used Gear 4: Snakeman, a form focused on increased speed and homing ability, to pummel Katakuri, who countered with his Spiked Mochi attacks.
They continued to trade blows until one final clash and Luffy became the victor of the fight.
Strategies used by Luffy
Since Luffy is the type of guy who comes up with plans Mid-fight, he used the retreat method often and picked up on Katakuri’s habit of telling the opponents their weaknesses.
Apart from that, he interrupted Katakuri’s snack time as well, which would have helped him to regain some energy as well.
There are other factors that can be considered as well.
Analysis of Luffy’s Fighting Techniques
At first, Luffy went into complete offensive while incorporating defensive tactics as well such as retreating when Katakuri announced that Luffy would deflate and adapting different battle techniques when going head-to-head against him.
Role of Observation Haki in the battle
Observation Haki is one of the most important Haki to be utilized by combatants as it is a complete game-changer.
Katakuri had a fearsome reputation just because of his mastery over this kind of Haki and Luffy had mastery over it mid-fight with Katakuri.
As we said earlier, Katakuri dominated the first part of the fight thank to his advanced observation haki’s mastery. As soon as Luffy caught up. the fight was more balanced.
Katakuri and Luffy both were calm under pressure and it was more of a battle of wits and mental aptitude rather than strength.
The importance of Luffy’s determination and willpower
I can’t blame some fans for thinking that this was a plot-armor filled fight but there are deeper layers of meaning to it than you can think.
One can only gain mastery over any type of skill or move if he/she has the determination and willpower for it and throughout the story, Luffy’s progress in mid-fights against Opponents like Crocodile, Lucci, Enel and Doflamingo was only made possible due to his sheer resilience to learn anything.
Once Luffy figured out what was happening during his fight and he remembered his training with Rayleigh, he got the edge that he needed against Katakuri and got the upper hand.
Episode and Manga Chapter
We will be now looking at the episodes and the chapters that covered the whole fight.
Details about the specific episode in which Luffy defeats Katakuri
At one point, before the Wano Arc, this was considered to be one of the longest. Luffy’s confrontation with him begins in Episodes 851-852, with the resumption beginning from Episode 858 till 861 and finally the battle concluding in Episode 871, encompassing 20 episodes in total.
Manga chapter corresponding to the episode
In correspondence with the manga, the fight starts chapters 878 and finishes chapter 896, covering a total of 19 chapters.
This fight was one of the most memorable moments of One Piece. On the one hand, by the length of this one and on the other hand, in the mastery of advanced observation haki.
He will be decisive for the future of Luffy as much in these fights to come as his relationship with the sweet commander.