Less than 24 hours after One Piece English voice actor Michelle Rojas reignited the already-debunked discourse over Yamato’s gender identity, One Piece Podcast co-host and Rick and Morty storyboard artist Steve Yurko has added fuel to the already blazing conflict by calling on fans to intentionally ignore the words of series creator Eiichiro Oda.

Yamato (Saori Hayami) stands triumphant in One Piece Episode 1067 "To the New Era! Settled! The Determination of the Brats" (2023), Toei Animation

Yamato (Saori Hayami) stands triumphant in One Piece Episode 1067 “To the New Era! Settled! The Determination of the Brats” (2023), Toei Animation

RELATED: ‘One Piece’ English Voice Actor Michelle Rojas Called Out By Fans After Attempting To Push Debunked Transgender Yamato Theory

As previously covered, according to Western Twitter activists, because the One Piece character Yamato is a tomboy who uses male pronouns (or a Bokukko in Japanese), the oni princess must be a transgender man.

Source: One Piece Episode 1013 “Yamato’s Past! The Man Who Came for an Emperor of the Sea!” (2022), Toei Animation

However, this take on Yamato’s character ignores the oni princess use of male pronouns originates from her abusive father, Emperor Kaido of the Beasts, forcefully raising her as a boy to fulfill his desire for a son, as well as Yamato’s wish to follow in the footsteps of her hero, Kozuki Oden.

Of course, all dissenters to this ‘transgender Yamato’ head canon are automatically labelled as transphobic bigots.

Yamato journal

Little Yamato holding Kozuki Oden’s Journal in One Piece Episode 1048 “For the Future! Yamato and the Great Swordsmen’s Pledge” (2023), Toei Animation via Crunchyroll.

However, despite the bleating of such ‘anime tourists’, Oda himself has already put the topic to rest – twice.

In 2021, the release of Yamato’s official, Oda-approved ‘Vivre Card’ character profile specifically labeled the Kanabō club-wielder heroine as a woman.

front of vivre card

Yamato’s female pronouns are highlighted on her Vivre Card by @NoxDRaz via Twitter

Further, the Vivre Card for the series actual transgender character, Kikunojo, lists her as “Male (Woman at heart).”

Soul_StormOP Yamato Transgender

Soul_StormOP via Twitter

Two years later, Oda once again offered proof of Yamato’s female gender by featuring her in a One Piece cover page illustration which specifically highlighted a handful of the series’ more popular female characters.

one piece female cover

Nami, Robin, Vivi, Yamato, Bonney, Shirahoshi. Tama, Carrot, Reiju Ulti, Perona and Koala in One Piece Chapter 1084 “The Attempted Murder of a Celestial Dragon” (2023), Shueisha. Words and Art by Eiichiro Oda via Digital Issue

RELATED: Western Activists Lose Their Minds After New ‘One Piece’ Color Spread Appears To Definitively Debunk Transgender Yamato Theory

Yet, despite these hard confirmations that Yamato is indeed female, when announcing her casting as the heroine’s English voice actor, the aforementioned Rojas referred to her with male pronouns.

“I AM KOZUKI ODEN!!” declared Rojas. “Honored to announce I play Yamato in #OnePiece! I am a huge One Piece fan and resonate with this character so much! So excited for everyone to meet him in the dub!!”

yamato dub

Michelle Rojas via Twitter

Taking the side of the gender-politics-poisoned in the resulting discourse, Yurko responded to the backlash against Rojas’ dismissal of Oda’s words by dumping fuel on the fire.

Taking to Twitter on July 4th, Yurko shared an original illustration depicting Yamato in a shared men’s bath – a recreation of a scene from the series’ Wano arc, wherein Yamato bathes with the male characters instead of the female characters, which actvists regularly point to as evidence of her transgender identity – rejecting her ‘smelly’ Vivre Card while Luffy cheers her on.

one piece podcast yamato

Steve Yurko via Twitter


Fed up with the constant attempt by fair-weather audiences to overwrite original works with their own narratives, One Piece fans at large pushed back against Yurko’s flagrant dismissal of Oda’s words.

“F*cking loser who can’t accept the truth and disregards what Oda and the editors wan,.”@Debulover2 declared. “Ignoring objective proof is another reason people despise you liberal/progressive s–theads. Turn off comments all you want, we beating you in the QRTs Not shocking you work on Rick and Morty.”

yamato op

@Debulover2 via Twitter

“[Yamato] uses Kanojo pronoun which is [the Japanese word for] female,” explained @XDeathSpeedZX. “She never used he/him or called herself a man, that was a translation error.”

“Also outside of the English mistranslation error in manga every single thing depicts her as a female and she is referred to as the Oni Princess in manga,” they added.

yamato op 2

@XDeathSpeedZX via Twitter

“This is just getting funny now,” laughed @TOFUK19. “So the vivre cards are information details, odas own staff confirm that they run through with oda before publishing them. Of course it confirms Yamato is a woman, but a certain community won’t accept what the author says of his own product.”

yamato op 3

@TOFUK19 via Twitter

“Yamato has big boobs,” said @soopy_cappy. “Oda only gives his female characters big boobs and an hourglass body shape. he literally calls it ‘the female figure’. YAMATO IS A WOMAN”

In support of his claim, @soopy_cappy also shared a “special drawing lesson” given by Oda in the SBS section of the series’ 78th volume.

yamato op 3


Asked by a fan if he could tell them “the secret to drawing the hourglass figures of the women in One Piece?! (Especially the boobs), the mangaka explained, “Just think of the female figure as three circles and one X. And now, goodbye.”

In a post-script, Oda playfully but seriously noted, “If this is the only figure you draw, your female readers will send you many criticisms. Try to remain strong and dedicated.”

Yamato (Saori Hayami) unleashes her power in One Piece Episode 1049 "Luffy Soars! Revenge Against the King of the Beasts" (2023), Toei Animation

Yamato (Saori Hayami) unleashes her power in One Piece Episode 1049 “Luffy Soars! Revenge Against the King of the Beasts” (2023), Toei Animation

“This is how the creator treats his own characters,” @soopy_cappy added. “You would do good to respect his choices. #EiichiroOda I STAND BY YOUR CHARACTER DESIGN.”

yamato op3

@soopy_cappy via Twitter

Some even theorized that the hand drawn holding Yamato’s vivre card in Yurko’s piece was Oda himself.

Providing their speculation regarding the podcast host’s thought process in the ‘green text‘-style, @gettingbason1 asserted, “>Depicts the author as a smelly jap >Image depicts the blatant disregard of an official source of canon information >Tourists eat this sh*t up >All this so they can push their idiot headcanon of Yamato being trans”

“The state of the anime community,” they then summarized. “We should’ve gatekept harder.”

one piece hand

@gettingbasedon1 via Twitter

“So I’m gonna assume that the guy who has the Vivre Card of Yamato saying she’s a Girl is Oda (The creator of One Piece),” likewise theorized @6ShubNiggurath6. “And Yamato waving it away is your head cannon that you so desperately want to be canon…”

op yamato 4

@6ShubNiggurath6 via Twitter

“‘It’s not that deep , is just my headcanon bro’ is such a lie,” accused @0wlGhost. “It ain’t your headcanon when you harass people if you don’t accept it It ain’t a headcannon when you take the author’s word, you know the guy who actually knows the characters, and paint it as a stinky piece of sh*t.”

yamato op 6

@0wlGhost via Twitter

Others still directed their frustrations towards the trans activist’s hypocrisy, recalling how they accepted Guilty Gear creator’s claim that he always intended for Bridget to be transgender despite the mountains of evidence to the contrary while simultaneously disregarding Oda’s own vision.

“Hey, remember when we were all told to respect the creator’s artistic vision over Bridget last year?”@iam16bit noted. “Funny how some people just magically forgot about that the moment Oda confirmed Yamato didn’t follow their headcannon.”

yamato op 7

@iam16bit via Twitter

“Bro western Twitter is so laughable,” observed @DevDWilky. “When it comes to Bridget from a male to a transgender woman they shout stunning and brave praising Daisuke’s vision meanwhile denying Oda’s vision of Yamato being canonically female and cope on their head-canon.”

yamato bridget

@DevDWilky via Twitter

‘”Nooooo you need to listen to Daisuke! He said Bridget is Trans he is the creator!'” @Pettan_Enjoyer imitated the activists.

“Meanwhile Oda literally says Yamato is female and these people disregard it,” they added. “It’s always amusing how these people can’t remain consistent to save their lives.”

yamato bridget 3

@Pettan_Enjoyer via Twitter

As of writing, Yurko has not publicly responded to fans’ criticisms.

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