Chapter 444 is titled "Adventure on Ghost Island".
Enel's Great Space Operations, Vol. 14: "My Vearth! Wrath Absolute!!"
Nami, Usopp, and Chopper set foot on Thriller Bark thanks to Franky revealing the channels within the Sunny. The rest of the crew, meanwhile, are being attacked by an invisible beast on the Thousand Sunny. Nami's team encounters a cerberus on the island and runs away. They meet its owner who offers the trio to take them to Dr. Hogback's castle. Chopper is surprised by the name.
The Straw Hats are confused by their new predicament, captured by the massive island of Thriller Bark within a massive pair of lips and watching the ghost disappear back to its "home". Robin realizes that the mechanism for the island is locked with the Thousand Sunny approaching the island that Brook had been running towards. Everyone is scared or confused about going to the island, except for Luffy, who just wants to go out and catch the earlier ghost. Sanji and Robin bring Luffy his important "Pirate Bento", with Robin being one of the few interested in their latest escapade.
With no stopping them, Franky decides to further explain the Soldier Dock System in regards to their new ship and the potential both held within and what could be held later. When they are asked to open it on Channel 2, they reveal Mini Merry II, their former Going Merry, resurrected as a shopping ship. Nami, Usopp and Chopper ride on it while Franky explains the further usage of the Soldier Dock, including a Waver and some submarines and the empty potential within Dock 4.
A while after setting off, Mini-Merry does not come back as Nami unexpectedly screams from the island, with the remaining Straw Hats unable to trace them from the ship. Suddenly, Sunny's anchor drops by itself and an invisible being boards onto the ship by way of the hatch. The being messes around, first with Luffy's face and Zoro's swords while making sounds of a beast. Fearing the unknown, Sanji tries to leave the ship but is thrown back on it instantly. But "the invisible creature" makes its weirdest attack towards Robin, attempting to grab and lick her. The beast pushes the ship away as it leaves, with the Straw Hats continuing to fight on whether to go off to save the others or not.
The Mini Merry trio, meanwhile, run ashore and land directly on Thriller Bark. Nami tries to apologize but gets none of it from Usopp and Chopper's fear. Yet before being able to regroup too easily, the trio encounter a large Cerberus, a creature with two dog heads and the head of a fox. The trio flees, terrified and perplexed by the beast, with Chopper further enraged by its fox head. Running up a flight of stairs, the trio end up in a forest where they attempt to hide from the Cerberus. But hiding in a tree, they instead encounter Hildon, a bat-like creature trying to find the monster chasing them. Hildon offers to ride in a prepared carriage to the mansion of a doctor named Hogback, a name Chopper immediately recognizes.
- Franky shows off more of the Thousand Sunny's schematics.
- Nami, Usopp, and Tony Tony Chopper disappear and accidentally arrive on the island of Thriller Bark.
- Monkey D. Luffy, Roronoa Zoro, Sanji, Nico Robin, and Franky are attacked by an unknown invisible creature.
- Nami, Usopp, and Chopper are chased by a giant three-headed dog that resembles Cerberus.
- They then meet a creepy "man" named Hildon.
- Like the previous chapters' initial usage of Perona's Horo Horo no Mi without introducing her, this chapter gives us the first unknown appearance of Absalom and his Suke Suke no Mi powers. Though initially passed off as another ghost, the unusual nature of his characters, including his animalistic noises and his perverted obsession with females, are briefly displayed during his first attack on the Thousand Sunny.
- Although they would not be officially introduced until the next chapter, this chapter introduces the first two of the various zombies on the island without stating them as zombies. Both Cerberus and Hildon are shown merely as strange inhabitants on Thriller Bark, with only Hildon's "21" stamped on his head being a hint of something further with him and everything on the "island".
- Although the Straw Hats' former ship, the Going Merry was declared deceased, it is unexpectedly "revived" by way of Franky's homage to the former ship in the Mini Merry II. Though not the same as the original Merry, the usage of its visage for the ship's design makes the crew believe that it is alive in this new form.
- The surgeon Dr. Hogback is mentioned for the first time by Hildon, and Chopper reacts with surprise upon hearing his name.
|Thriller Bark Arc|
|Enel's Great Space Operations|
|Manga Chapters (covers)|