"Luffy in an Emergency! The Living Place of the Strongest Shadow!" is the 349th episode of the One Piece anime.
After defeating Tararan and releasing his shadow soul from within, Brook explains to Nico Robin and Franky the truth regarding the zombies of Thriller Bark, particularly of the manipulations of Shichibukai Gecko Moria and his using the Kage Kage no Mi to steal shadows for his zombie army. Meanwhile, Moria meets with the rest of the Mysterious Four (as well as the hidden Straw Hat Pirates in Kumashi) where he uses his powers to steal Luffy's shadow, which he plans to use for his ultimate Special Zombie.
Tararan is in genuine pain, much to the shock of Robin and the spider mice. Franky warns Brook that Tararan is a zombie and therefore won’t be defeated by a simple cutting move. Brook confidently tells him that the spider-monkey is, indeed finished, since zombies actually have a weakness that Brook has identified. Tararan's agony becomes more violent and a black substance flies out of his mouth towards the sky. Brook explains that it is his soul returning to its "master". Tararan collapses and loses consciousness. The spider mice are shocked and upset. Franky wants to know what happened and Brook states this was "purification".
The spider mice suddenly recognize Brook as the "Humming Brook" who caused a ruckus on the island five years ago. They rush inside to inform Moria about it. Brook tells Franky that while the spider web is immune to brute force, it can be destroyed by fire which, sure enough, Franky illustrates with his fire breath. Once free, Franky and Robin confronts Brook about his knowledge of the island. Brook is concerned about the members of the Straw Hat crew that have already been captured and whether it is too late for them. After a bit of goofing around, Franky finally gets Brook to tell them what he knows.
Brook tells them of spending the years after his "death" drifting on the sea on a ship with a broken rudder. Five years ago though, he was led to Thriller Bark. Hoping to find a way to repair his ship and finally escape the Florian Triangle, he went in to investigate. He found the zombies and ended up being captured. He was brought to the building they currently stand in front of. There he saw a combat dancer and a patched corpse (called a "marionette"). Then a huge man, Moria, tore the dancer's shadow from the floor and inserted it into the corpse who then suddenly came to life, replicating the moves of the dancer, while the dancer himself lost consciousness. Soon thereafter, the same thing happened to Brook himself.
Brook explains that a shadow is a replicate soul that follows you everywhere. Gecko Moria, thanks to his Kage Kage no Mi, seizes them and makes them obey his will. He uses a corpse, usually the corpse of legendary warriors, sometimes sown together from different pieces by Doctor Hogback, to transfer the shadow soul into and revive them. It combines the physical strength of the body of the marionette and the personality and fighting skills of the shadowed soul. This is why Moria is particularly eager to find bounty heads to capture. Because of that strength though, the original owners of the shadow are generally sent away and left drifting at sea after they lose consciousness, which worries Franky and Robin. But Brook figures they still have some time before that happens to the captured Straw Hats. Brook has a plan and orders the other two to follow it. Franky is reluctant but Robin asks Brook to tell them what it is.
Inside, Gyoro, Nin, and Bao announce the arrival of the "Three Mysterious Persons". Dr Hogback, Perona and Absalom enter the room and stand in front of Moria whose face and gigantic body are finally revealed. He tells them how eager he is to become Pirate King but Luffy, who is tied up with spider web string in a cage in the same room, yells that he will be the one who becomes Pirate King, not Moria!
Luffy yells at Moria to give Zoro, Sanji, Nami and the others back. Dr Hogback admires Luffy’s strength but Perona is skeptical whether Luffy is the type of man who would actually be a threat to the World Government. Luffy and Absalom bicker about the armor Luffy is wearing and "romance".
Moria tells Luffy he only captured three members of his crew so far: Luffy himself, Zoro and a "blonde guy with no wanted poster". Luffy surmises it must be Sanji. Inside Kumashi, Nami and Chopper are eavesdropping and the three of them are shocked that the three strongest members of the crew got captured. Moria asks Perona about the missing three members and Perona says the Risky Brothers never showed up with them. She assumes they must have escaped. Kumashi approaches to try and tell them about them being hidden inside his body but Perona shushes him again. Absalom tells the others of the fight those three Straw Hats had in Perona’s garden then suddenly worries Hogback did something to "his bride" Nami. As they bicker, Cindry interrupts with some putdowns.
Moria interrupts pointing out they can capture the missing pirates later. He wanted them here to show them the creation of Moria's new great fighting asset. Suddenly a scream is heard and Luffy, still tied up with spider web string and in the armor, is crawling around the room. Bao tells Moria that Luffy bit through his cage to escape! Hogback is excited by Luffy's fighting spirit but as Absalom raises his hand to attack, Perona points out that because they are inside, it is better if she takes care of it. Perona starts running after Luffy and Luffy, still crawling, taunts her. But three of the "negative ghosts" come out of Perona's body and aim straight for Luffy who can’t crawl fast enough away from them. As they pass through his body, Luffy stops crawling, goes into the fetal position and wishes sadly he was reborn as a sea slug. Absalom notes with a mix of admiration and dread how the negative ghosts were able to destroy the spirit of the "man who wants to be Pirate King".
A while later, Luffy is seen without the armor but still tied up in the spider string. This time, he is also hanging to the ceiling with some more string while standing in front of Moria. His spirit is back and he is still grunting and cursing Moria. A large light source is turned on behind Luffy and Moria leans over to grab the shadow Luffy's body is creating on the floor. He picks it up from the floor, dragging Luffy along with it. Nami, Usopp and Chopper, still hidden inside Kumashi, watch in horror. Luffy is shocked and yells at him to stop. Moria pulls out a gigantic pair of scissors and cuts the shadow from Luffy’s body. Luffy falls on the floor and loses consciousness. Moria laughs and celebrates that he now has Luffy's shadow with the 300,000,000 fighting power. He proclaims his intention to use it to create the "Ultimate Special Zombie".
Characters in Order of Appearance
- In the English Dub, Brook was singing We Are! in his flashback before getting chased by Cerberus.