“The Conclusion! Luffy, Accelerating Fist of the Supreme King”
The early part of this episode is some decent downtime as we get more of Sanji taking care of Zoro on the run and finding some places to get a little downtime. It’s good to just have these two together but amusing since you have Zoro so covered in bandages in a big and comical way. They do connect up with a few others from Kin’emon’s group along the way and it helps to flesh things out so that more people know what’s going on and where. That helps to turn the pair toward the PErformance Floor where more help is needed, considering how things are going so badly. The first half of the episode also gives us a good bit of time between Luffy and Kaido as the two continue to fight but in general, expectations are low of something significant when it plays as the second part of an episode instead of the main focus. That said, it does continue to be an engaging enough fight with the quality of the animation and scale of power being applied against each other.
The post-eyecatch section of the episode gives us some time with Nami and her group but it also showcases how Big Mom is handling things after what’s been going on with her seeming change of heart. Big Mom isn’t surprisingly violent here – we’re very familiar with her violence – but it’s given a weird kind of reverence as she makes her kill that just feels plain weird. With Ulti’s death and the dark look from Big Mom, that’s certainly changing the balance but it’s not reassuring to people like Nami and Usopp who realize that it really could have been them as Big Mom uses that new cloud, Hera.
Zeus gets a surprising bit of focus here as well, as Big Mom basically lets him go and even Nami is dismissive of him for good reason. You can see him being a bit of a wildcard in the near future and a likely reconciliation with Nami, but it does have some decent emotional resonance in the scene.
Sanji is forced to run with Zoro on his shoulder. Meanwhile, Nami bravely stands up against Ulti and Big Mom. On the rooftop, the intense battle between Luffy and Kaido finally comes to an end.
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