"Z's Ambition Arc - A Desperate Big Escape Strategy!" is the 577th episode of the One Piece anime.
Luffy and Zoro face off against Shuzo and Momonga. The Straw Hats, Lily, and her father manage to escape with a Coup de Burst and the anchor connected to the Thousand Sunny. Shuzo defeats Momonga and the Marines before going after the Straw Hats. He prepares to fire his own men as torpedoes at the island the Straw Hats are on.
Several of Shuzo's men appear and fight against the Marines and easily begin to overwhelm them. Luffy continues to fight Shuzo while Zoro fights Momonga. The vice admiral states that they should not interfere with their business like this. Zoro uses his 360 pound cannon, sending Momonga flying back and destroying a Marine ship. From the sidelines, Nami notices the wave changes in the ocean and realizes a Thrust-up Stream is coming. When Usopp asks what that is and asks if it is similar to the Knock-up Stream like the one that took them to Sky Island, Nami says it is, but smaller, but still has enough power to destroy a Marine ship. She has Franky fire the anchors to the raft Panz Fry and the others are on and lets Sanji and Lily know in advance. Luffy has a hard time against Shuzo's fighting style due to his long arms, but then starts using Haki to overwhelm Shuzo again.
As Robin, Chopper, and Brook make their way back to the Sunny, several Thrust-up Streams take out some ships, and one of the streams has Usopp in the Shark Submerge flying back to the ship. As Nami has everyone get on the ship she has Franky use a Coup de Burst after the raft everyone is one get close to the thrust and they fly away. However, Luffy and Zoro fall off due to the raft breaking and Luffy uses his arms to grab the raft while Shuzo uses a knife with a Vivre Card attached to it on the raft.
After they get away, Momonga gathers his men on a broken ship and laments them having gotten away again while Shuzo goes to finish the Marines off with an attack and defeats Momonga. He then travels to the Straw Hats location, recalling his past fight with Ain. Their fight lasted for over five hours until she won, prompting their leader Z to give her the win and the title of next in command. Shuzo is determined to become the new next in command and destroy the pirates.
The Straw Hats land in a location around some rocks and Robin notes they will be safe for now while Nami is happy that the plan worked and that they finally got out of the sea. Chopper works on Panz Fry, noting he had some bad injuries and that he will be fine if he rests. Lily thanks Chopper for helping her father and the rest of the crew. Luffy is excited that he can try Panz Fry's cooking and Lily reveals she took some food from the Marines and while Zoro notes that that is odd, he changes his tone after seeing she took some sake also. As Luffy asks Panz Fry to make some food, Sanji kicks him stating he needs to rest and Chopper says that Luffy did not listen. However, Panz Fry says he will cook for them, despite Lily's protest stating that as a chef and giant, he was saved by the crew and would shame himself if he refused a request. He then thanks Luffy for saving him and says that he will cook the food.
Shuzo arrives at the location and notes they are out of torpedoes. Several of his men offer their lives to be used as kamikaze torpedoes, prompting Shuzo to acknowledge their sacrifice and say that they are true men. He then states that he will not let their deaths be for nothing. The ships then prepare to attack the Straw Hats.
Characters in Order of Appearance
- The Straw Hats and Lily successfully rescue Panz Fry.
- Shuzo destroys the capsized ship where Momonga and his crew were in and pursues the Straw Hat Pirates.
- Z appears for the first time in the TV anime even though it was only in a flashback.
- Shuzo once fought Ain for the position of Z's right hand but was defeated.
- This episode does not contain the New World opening narration.
- The preview for the next episode is very brief, only having Luffy state the title of that episode.