If there’s any anime that has memorable, badass, and silly characters, it’s One Piece.
These characters are quirky – but they’re not flat. We can laugh at them, yet also empathize with them.
Oda’s characterization skills are amazing.
One Piece isn’t the second bestselling comic in the world for nothing. And if we were to rank some of the most notable One Piece characters, what would that look like?
Here’s a collection of our top picks.
Note: I won’t be including any of the main characters like Luffy or Nami, so we’re focusing on other characters that really stand out.
20. Kozuki Oden
This samurai was once one of the strongest men in the world. He was a man of principle and honor.
Ironic that he became a pirate, isn’t it?
A pirate he may be, yet he found love nonetheless and became a loving father and husband.
Oden was a silly man – but that’s what made him charming.
There won’t be anyone else that’s quite as similar as him (cough Yamato cough).
19. Silvers Rayleigh
If the “Dark King” epithet doesn’t scream “badass”, I don’t know what will.
And another title of his is the “Right Hand of the Pirate King”. I’d be terrified of this pirate after hearing those appellations…
He has the strength to back it up too.
Plus he was one of the strongest swordsmen in his prime.
What I’m saying is this: he is still a force to be reckoned with, even as an old man. Although retired now, Rayleigh assuredly has a role to play in the final act of One Piece.
18. Dracule Mihawk
Mihawk radiates “Don’t mess with me” energy.
And he’s right to give off the aura. He’s the greatest swordsman in the world, after all.
And the greatest swordsman needs to have a sword that’s as long as they are, right?
But setting aside that title for one second, let’s look at something other than his strength – his outfit.
Let’s be real here: Mihawk has to be the drippiest pirate on the Grand Line. I mean, who doesn’t love a gothic vampire hunter?
Come one, look at that mustache!
17. Marshall D. Teach
A.K.A. Blackbeard, scum of the seven seas.
I’d say this man is the truest pirate of them all. Not true of heart, but true to a real life pirate.
Blackbeard is not the most liked character of all time (although he did rank 46 in the world popularity poll).
However, upon meeting him at that bar in Jaya, you can’t say you didn’t like the guy. His ideals matched with Luffy’s perfectly:
“A man’s dream will never die!”
Then we realized the darkness he had underneath…
Yeah, not so likable anymore.
This legend with his legendary devil fruit could never be forgotten. His minor appearances as a supporting side character give only a taste of what he could do in an all-out fight.
Fortunately, that might change soon.
If you’re caught up with the anime, you’ll be excited to know that he’ll have a large role to play in this raid. With his mythical devil fruit ability, we’ll have no problem in healing our team.
Fun fact: there are three doctors on the samurai’s side, including Law, Marco, and Chopper.
Honestly I would’ve loved it if Marco had mentored Chopper during the timeskip. I know he had to deal with the aftereffects of the war, but perhaps teaching Chopper would’ve been a way of investing his cards into the Strawhat Pirates.
Marco certainly wouldn’t have felt out of place with the rest of the mentors the Strawhats received.
Zoro got the world’s greatest swordsman as his sparring partner, Luffy got the Pirate King’s right hand man, and Chopper got a library.
15. Bartholomew Kuma
When we first meet him, Kuma is a terrifying man.
We don’t really like him after what he did to the strawhats in Thriller Bark. However, as we get more information about Kuma, we start to like him a lot more.
This pattern of likability is the exact opposite to Blackbeard’s: both of whom have absolutely awesome devil fruits.
And the paw-paw fruit is a top-tier devil fruit that has near limitless capabilities.
Kuma was used as only an antagonist in the series, even though he was genuinely a good guy.
I hope we can see him regain his former self one day and greet him as an old friend.
14. Charlotte Katakuri
Katakuri is a phenomenal character that speaks little words – but his actions speak louder than what he says.
And Katakuri was an unofficial mentor of Luffy. He basically taught Luffy how to use advanced observation haki.
He’s even the best big brother in the Charlotte family, and candidate for the best older brother in the series.
His caring nature lands him as the favorite amongst his siblings.
Now that he’s met Luffy, how will he use his immense power for the Charlotte family in the future?
Ever since we met him in Long Ring Long Land Island, Kuzan has stayed as an enigma.
Kuzan’s true thoughts (formerly known as Aokiji) are never revealed to us, or anyone. For some strange reason he’s affiliated with the Blackbeard pirates?
Well what we do know that he isn’t entirely a villain, yet he has his own morals and goals that he follows.
Aokiji also has a devil fruit attached with a fundamental element: ice.
The last time we saw someone with a devil fruit with one of the four core elements, they changed the entire pirate world as we knew it.
No, I’m not talking about Caribou. Or Pica.
And not Crocodile either but that’s debatable.
How could I not include Bentham to be one of the best One Piece characters of all time?
He saved Luffy three times. Bentham’s usefulness and Devil Fruit ability cannot be understated.
I was ecstatic to see his Clone-Clone Fruit in the Wano arc. It was a nice call back to Alabasta.
Bentham certainly has a place in the upcoming war – and I’m all here for it.
Bellemere is arguably the most relatable mom in One Piece.
We saw her hardships and struggles with raising two step-kids in poverty. That covers three subjects many people can relate with: struggling single mom, step-relationships, and poverty.
Bellemere’s proof of her love for her children is what brings her up to a 10/10 mom for me.
The other 9 points come from her style. Damn that hair is wickedly beautiful.
What is there not to love about Buggy?
He’s one of the funniest characters in the series, with an amazing voice actor to play the role.
And Buggy has one of the best devil fruits in the series. Honestly, it’s so versatile that you could’ve given Luffy the Chop-Chop Fruit instead, and he would’ve defeated his opponents as if he had the Rubber-Rubber Fruit.
Truthfully, I have a feeling Buggy is going to be the final obstacle to stop Luffy from becoming the Pirate King.
Who knows how powerful he’s gotten over the past few years.
9. Monkey D. Garp
Garp has done so much for Luffy, the marines, and the world.
At this point I’ve got to honor him as a hero in this list. He stood up against one of the greatest pirates of all time by fighting alongside one of the greatest pirates of all time.
Garp needs more screen time (like many other characters).
I’ve got to see him flex on these pirate underlings more.
I wonder what side he’ll take during the Final War…
8. Donquixote Doflamingo
Doffy is one of the best villains we’ve seen in an anime. His ruthlessness paired with the power to back it up makes for a perfect combination for a villain.
However, he’s a negotiator too. He’s not all brute force doing what he wants.
There’s a method to his madness.
But what I love about him the most is his backstory, since it really complicates his character.
Doffy feels like a real character that isn’t just there to see the world burn (ironic because his nickname is Joker).
I wish I had an uncle like Jinbe. He’d give me all sorts of life advice and help me with anything I’d need.
Jinbe is a powerful protector, the perfect rearguard. And his ability to manipulate water is insanely unique.
He doesn’t need drugs to enhance himself either— Jinbe is all skill and technique.
Imagine if Jinbe was a Pokémon.
I would never get a chance to play the other starters because I’d pick him in every single playthrough.
6. Donquixote Rosinante
I know what you must be thinking: why is Rosinante above Doflamingo?
I must be biased right?
Well, not exactly. Let me explain.
Doffy outclasses Corazon in nearly every department: strength/ability, relevance, and possibly even drip (that one’s debatable).
But the reason why I put Corazon above his brother is because Rosinante just hits differently.
Doffy’s backstory ends when he shoots his father. But Corazon’s doesn’t end until he dies for Law.
Sure Doffy has better fight scenes and lines of dialogue. But Corazon as a character outclasses the Heavenly Demon. I know some of you may prefer villainy over altruism – and that’s fine.
But Corazon is the type of man that deserves so much better than what he got.
His life could have continued on as a successful marine if not for Doflamingo shooting him in the chest.
Okay, so maybe I’m a little biased.
I must be crazy to put Makino even near the top of this ranking.
But answer me this: who’s the first waifu—the original waifu— we’ve seen in the anime? (I swear, if you say Alvida…).
That’s right, it was Makino.
She’s the one villager we’ve seen who was friendly with Shanks (probably the father of her child too). She was the girl who took care of Luffy, Ace, and Sabo as kids.
Makino was an outstanding role model for each of these monumental characters.
Wait, if she has a child and the children she nurtured were Luffy, Ace, and Sabo….
…I wonder what kind of kid they’ll turn out to be…
4. Nefertari Vivi
Vivi is a queen. Literally.
She has the benefit of having the blood of a “Celestial Dragon”, but is also a nice person who was part of a crime syndicate and the pirate crew of the future pirate king.
With that resume, she could get any job she wants!
Seriously though, Vivi is one of the best (if not the best) leaders we’ve seen in One Piece.
She inspires viewers with her upbeat personality, selflessness, and wisdom – yet she shows her weakness as well.
3. Nico Robin
Robin’s placement here is rightfully deserved. She’s the cornerstone in not one, but TWO of the most memorable arcs in the series, with a possible third arc soon to come (as of this writing).
Robin is imperative to finding the one piece, the namesake of the show.
Without her, our options are extremely limited when it comes to reading the poneglyphs, the stones directing us towards the one piece.
And Robin’s devil fruit ability is also immensely creative and fun.
Now it seems we’ll finally get to see more of Robin in a fight during the raid.
But besides Robin’s prowess and skills, she’s also the best girl in One Piece. ‘Nuff said.
2. Trafalgar D. Water Law
As a kid, I always had trouble pronouncing Law’s first name.
Honestly, Trafalgar is such a difficult word to pronounce, I’ve seen adults have trouble with the name.
But that didn’t stop me from putting him at the number two spot on this list.
Trafalgar is so active in One Piece.
His ambition to take down something so much more powerful than him (like Doflamingo or Kaido) could’ve been matched only by Luffy.
Even though he isn’t an official member of the Strawhat crew, Law got two full arcs where he played lead roles in the arcs.
Law got a lot of love and attention from Oda – hell, even the fans love Law.
The Surgeon of Death’s reputation precedes him.
On the sniper island, the Sniper King was born.
He saves those that need saving.
Sogeking is a hero who shows bravery in the face of terror. The Sniper King is on the same level as the Pirate King.
His Observation Haki reaches far beyond what’s humanly possible.
But the one thing that definitively cements Sogeking as the best character in One Piece outshines every other awesome aspect of our hero.
In One Piece, the only character to have their own theme song (and visuals to accompany it) is Sogeking.
And remember, if you ever need the services of the Sniper King, look inside your heart!