Did One Piece reference Fairy Tail?

Although not officially confirmed, there are some intriguing hidden references to Fairy Tail in the Punk Hazard and Dressrosa arcs of the popular manga and anime series One Piece. The two series share a deep and longstanding friendship between their respective creators, Eiichiro Oda and Hiro Mashima, resulting in a plethora of similarities in their works. Fans have been quick to pick up on the references to One Piece in Fairy Tail, but spotting the references to Fairy Tail in One Piece has proven to be a bit more challenging.

In the Punk Hazard arc, during Episode 602 titled “The Deadliest Weapon of Mass Destruction in History! Shinokuni!”, while attempting to outrun a wave of Caesar Clown’s poisonous gas, Brook, Zoro, Sanji, and Kin’emon spot a strange creature in the distance. Sanji comments on the creature’s lizard-like appearance, but Zoro informs the group that what they’re seeing is actually a dragon. The revelation leaves everyone in disbelief, including Sanji, who asserts that dragons aren’t real. However, Zoro insists that these mythical creatures somehow exist on Punk Hazard Island and recalls his earlier encounter with a much larger one. Zoro even suggests that they could ride atop the dragon to escape the fast-moving gas. In agreement, Sanji picks up his running speed to catch up to the creature, all while yelling, “Wait up, you fairy tale bastard!”

While it’s easy to see that Sanji’s vulgar yet hilarious reference to the dragon was meant to emphasize the creature’s origins, some fans speculate that his words may have a double meaning. Sanji’s mention of fairy tales in the scene could be a hidden reference to the Fairy Tail series, according to this theory. The legends from which dragons originate are typically referred to as “folklore” or “mythology,” not “fairy tales,” which makes Sanji’s specific word choice noteworthy. However, all three terms accurately describe the type of stories that include these mythical creatures. When coupled with other evidence, the fan theory appears less far-fetched than it seems.

It’s worth noting that Sanji’s specific words vary depending on the language of the voiceover. While “fairy tales” are mentioned in the English dubbed version, that particular wording doesn’t appear in the original Japanese subbed version. This difference may be an indication that the Easter egg was intentionally woven into the script by the production team upon translating the series, but this remains speculation.

Another reference to Fairy Tail in One Piece appears during the Dressrosa arc, specifically in the Corrida Colosseum gladiator tournament. In an attempt to conceal his identity, Luffy adopts the name Lucy upon entering the arena. This choice of pseudonym immediately rings a bell for many fans of Fairy Tail, as Lucy is the first name of Fairy Tail’s main female protagonist. It’s a subtle nod, but it’s one that hasn’t gone unnoticed by the observant fans of both series.

The commonalities between One Piece and Fairy Tail have been a hot topic of discussion for over a decade, and it’s tough to say if there’s any merit to these Easter eggs without confirmation directly from Oda or the team at Toei Animation. Nevertheless, coincidental or not, the connection between the two series is undeniable, and it has brought joy to both fandoms that will continue for many years.

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