In recent months, Western transgender activists have turned social media into a war zone over their belief that the One Piece character Yamato was transgender, but thanks to the latest series color spread from creator Eiichiro Oda, it appears that the bleating of the terminally online was all for nothing.
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As argued by these activists, because Yamato is a tomboy who once used male pronouns – a result of both her being forcefully raised as a boy by her abusive father, Kaido of the Beasts, and her dream of following in the footsteps of her hero, the male Kozuki oden – the oni princess must be a transgender man.
And, of course, all dissenters to this belief have automatically been labelled as transphobic bigots.
While Oda has long-refrained from giving a direct answer on the topic of Yamato’s gender, it seems he has finally made a concrete move to lay the speculation to rest.
Released on May 22nd and illustrated by the mangaka himself, One Piece Chapter 1084 opens with a summer-themed color spread showing a number of popular female characters from the franchise, including Nami, Robin, and Carrot, having fun on a water slide.
Notably, among the various heroines and villainesses is Yamato, who is sitting front and center on a ‘Thousand Sunny’-themed raft.
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But while fans were admiring their favorite One Piece ladies having fun under the sun, critics were losing their minds over the fact that Oda had seemingly de-confirmed their transgender headcanons – to the extent that some even made threats against the “transphobic” creator’s life.
Announcing their desire to personally harm Oda for erasing the possibility of a trans Yamato, @clownseo tweeted, “Oda I’m coming for your jugular you know what you did.”
In addition to believing that Yamato was trans, @zepart-st3r claimed the heroine was hanging out with a cast of “lesbians” – despite absolutely none of the characters appearing in the spread being one – before likewise revealing their desire “to kill Oda”.
“what kind of game is he playing why is he entertaining transphobic arguments WHY,” they hyperbolically cried.
Enraged Brazilian critic @ryanniuuuuuu escalated his death threat towards Oda by declaring that they were going to hunt down and castrate the One Piece mangaka.
“What the f*ck is this Oda?” he demanded (translated via DeepL). “I’m going to hunt you down just to castrate you!”
Other critics, such as @glittercherry_, were infuriated not only with how Oda chose to include the male-identifying Yamato in the all-female spread, but not the series’ canon male-to-female character of Kiku, the Kikunojo of the Lingering Snow.
“Oda … Prepare to pay the consequences of your actions!!!” @glittercherry_ proclaimed. “Why is Yamato here and not Kiku instead?? The moment I don’t get if he respects his own characters.”
Tripling down on the critical gender theory, @the_cataonic insultingly dismissed biological women by refusing to acknowledge their existence in order to accuse Oda of transphobia.
“People complain about Yamato being here and Kiku missing,” they snarked. “Guys calm down it’s not a color spread about women, it is about boob havers. hope that helps.”
While Yamato’s inclusion in this color spread is the closest Oda has come to confirming her gender, as of writing, the mangaka still has yet to offer a direct answer on the matter.
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