One Piece: X Drake Is Most Certainly Alive and Has a New Role to Play (2024)

By Alastair Johns

X Drake has likely survived, and due to his reflection on who Luffy is, he will play a new role alongside Koby in the final stretch of One Piece.

One Piece: X Drake Is Most Certainly Alive and Has a New Role to Play (1)

The Onigashima Raid's conclusion in One Piece tied up many loose ends, while the combatants' current states were either confirmed or implied. However, in typical Eiichiro Oda fashion, some characters were given a more ambiguous fate in the war’s finale. The former Tobiroppo and undercover Marine X Drake was one of these. Drake and Basil Hawkins collapsed together in the wreckage of Onigashima, with Basil claiming he had foreseen his own death and Drake accepting his own, ensuring he took his true identity with him to the grave.

Another running theme of Oda’s storytelling is the survival of characters who seemingly have no chance to live, such as Pell’s explosive sacrifice or Pound about to be cut in half by Charlotte Oven. Drake took many wounds throughout the battle, receiving a particularly dangerous strike to the neck from Guernica. Even so, when comparing the magnitude of damage other characters have taken and survived, it is likely Drake is on the path to recovery. The lack of information in the arc’s epilogue chapters about his well-being implies he was able to get away. If he indeed lives, what role will he play in One Piece's endgame?

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X Drake’s Position Within SWORD and Its Role in One Piece

One Piece: X Drake Is Most Certainly Alive and Has a New Role to Play (2)

As Captain of the undercover marine organization known as SWORD, it appears Drake held a senior role in the group -- though the one pulling the strings has yet to be revealed. Drake is significant in this regard due to the unique role he serves in the narrative. Whilst there have been undercover agents in the World Government, it appears that SWORD is the Navy counter with a deeper and investigative purpose. As Drake is headlining operations, he is likely aware of the group's true purpose and has been ensuring its mission is on the road to success.

Monkey D. Garp or Sengoku are more than likely connected to the organization, and their moral codes conflict with that of the World Government's. Considering the known members of SWORD and the unconfirmed but highly likely members, they can be considered a force for good within the One Piece Universe, unlike Cipher Pole. Sengoku’s relationship with Drake is similar to that of Donquixote Rosinante, so the connection of Sengoku’s overseeing of Drake’s missions is a system that makes the most logical sense. This important but still mysterious group clearly has a vital role to perform in countering the corrupted World Government.

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X Drake Will Continue the Alliance with Luffy

One Piece: X Drake Is Most Certainly Alive and Has a New Role to Play (3)

Aside from his unique position in the Navy, Drake was one of many characters caught up in the whirlpool of Monkey D. Luffy’s influence. At first, Drake was forced to defend himself when his treachery against the Beast Pirates was exposed. When the opportunity arose for him to request an alliance with Luffy and the Samurai, it was the safest route for his survival. Not only did Drake fight to survive the battle, he put his life on the line to protect those rebelling against Kaido, being one of the sturdiest defenses for Chopper during his attempts to cure the Ice Oni Virus.

Drake was able to see and understand the compelling nature of Luffy that Koby had explained to him. He falls into the vast category of characters who have been greatly affected by the joy and freedom Luffy personifies. Drake's belief in the protagonist's success was so strong, the former almost sacrificed himself by stabbing Guernica upon overhearing the assassination plan against Luffy.

Like many others, Drake accepted the possibility of Luffy being a force that will change the world. Alongside Koby, there will need to be leadership that will support Luffy’s bid for worldwide freedom when inevitable implosion of the Navy structure comes after the World Government’s genocidal behavior is brought to light.

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X Drake as a Force for Justice and Freedom in One Piece

One Piece: X Drake Is Most Certainly Alive and Has a New Role to Play (4)

As Drake was raised by Sengoku, his style of justice and values likely derive from his upbringing. Drake proved in the raid that the concept of justice became a secondary aspect; the Wano citizens' struggles and defeating Kaido -- even if it meant Drake becoming another support beam for Luffy -- was paramount. Drake may have started the fight with altruistic intentions -- being a marine in a den of pirates put him at odds with all sides -- but he quickly learned that Luffy was a force for good, regardless of being a pirate.

The chances of Drake being dead in One Piece are slim to none. Everything he learned and experienced in the Raid of Onigashima will be vital in the continuation of SWORD’s mission, whatever it truly is. Though, with two members of the organization now being enamored by Luffy’s influence and potential, it can only be beneficial for the future Pirate King’s final confrontation with the World Government.

One Piece: X Drake Is Most Certainly Alive and Has a New Role to Play (2024)
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