One Piece: The reason Zoro isn’t the Vice-Captain explained

Tulisha srivastava
An image of Roronoa Zoro from One Piece in the Wano Arc

Rorona Zoro is Luffy’s first mate and the strongest crew member. He is the most loyal to Luffy and is a crucial part of the team. Yet, despite that, Luffy hasn’t declared Zoro as his Vice-Captain.

In One Piece, even the worst pirates follow a code of conduct. They value their captains and are never known to defy orders. The Straw Hat Pirates are the central crew in the story.

They all joined the crew due to different circumstances. Each member has their own dreams to follow. And yet, they wouldn’t hesitate to sacrifice their dreams for Luffy’s sake. However, Zoro is by far the crew’s most loyal and exceptional member.

He is the glue that holds the crew together and also looks out for their reckless Captain. He is always there to make the best decisions for the crew. Zoro even encourages Luffy to act more like a Captain. Here’s why Zoro is not the Vice-Captain of the Straw Hat Pirates.

Zoro is only the unofficial Vice-Captain of the crew

The role of the Vice-Captain isn’t given to the strongest member of the crew. They need to excel in leadership on top of being strong. As the Captain’s right-hand man, the Vice-Captain must also fill in whenever the Captain isn’t there.

Zoro fulfils all the criteria to become an excellent Vice-Captain. In the “Water 7” arc, he stops Luffy from getting Usopp back the crew unless the latter apologizes. He also explains that the crew would collapse if the members start coming and going as they please, especially after disrespecting their Captain.

Furthermore, in the “Punk Hazard Arc,” when things don’t look good for the crew, Zoro decides to knock him sense into Luffy. His encouragement motivates Luffy to do better and goes after Ceaser Clown.

Various examples can be seen throughout the series when Zoro comes forward for Luffy and the crew. Furthermore, just like Luffy, he is also a member of the Worst Generation, and he fights side-by-side with Luffy to defeat Kaido and Big Mom — something that the other crew members couldn’t do.

The Straw Hat Pirates in One Piece don’t need to establish a hierarchy system

One Piece straw hats bounties after Wano

Zoro isn’t given the title of Vice-Captain because the Straw Hats don’t have a hierarchy system. They only have a Captain, and the others have specific roles assigned to them, such as chef, navigator, doctor, etc. 

The Straw Hats are an unorthodox pirate crew in the series. Luffy never wanted a massive crew with thousands of people. Although he has a grand fleet, they don’t travel with him, and their only role is to arrive when Luffy will summon them.

Yonkos have thousands of crew members, making it impossible for one person to look after them. Therefore, they form divisions in the crew and assign one commander or general to oversee all the members in a particular division.

Even after becoming a Yonko, Luffy is a free spirit. The Straw Hats never established a hierarchy among them, and they work perfectly as a team – proving they don’t need such a system. Therefore, Zoro hasn’t been made the official Vice-Captain of the Straw Hats despite having more than enough abilities to become one.

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