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The Gomu Gomu no Mi[2] is a Paramecia-type[4] Devil Fruit that gives the user's body the properties of rubber, making the user a Rubber Human (ゴム人間 Gomu Ningen?).[2]

It was originally a treasure that was heavily guarded by the World Government, and later stolen by Shanks and his crew,[5][6][2] before it was accidentally eaten by the series protagonist Monkey D. Luffy.[1]

Etymology

  • "Gomu" means "rubber" in Japanese.
  • In the Viz Manga, 4Kids and Funimation dubs, it is called the Gum-Gum Fruit, "gum" being a soft, cohesive substance designed for chewing, with elastic properties.

Appearance

The Gomu Gomu no Mi in Shanks' treasure chest.

The Gomu Gomu no Mi is a violet, spherical shaped fruit with a stem sprouting out of the top, with swirls that go in a curly "S" like-pattern. Its overall appearance greatly resembles a Yubari King.[2]

While its final design has the characteristic Devil Fruit swirls all over it, the fruit was initially drawn without them in the first version of Romance Dawn.[7]

Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths

Luffy showcasing his elasticity.

The fruit's major strength, as demonstrated by Luffy, is that the user's body can stretch, bend, bounce, inflate, and twist like rubber, even when the user himself is nullified.

Unlike most other Devil Fruits, the effects of the Gomu Gomu no Mi are always active, making the user's body permanently rubbery. The user becomes almost completely immune to blunt damage, including hand-to-hand combat, blunt weapons, bullets, and even cannonballs, all of which will just bounce off from his skin. Situations like falls from great heights and heavy collisions that would kill a normal person end up not being lethal or even painful, and certain traps and hazards are rendered ineffective considering the user's enhanced flexibility.[8][9][10]

Luffy's rubber body not only allows him to hit Enel, whose body is made of electricity, but also prevents Luffy from suffering electric shocks.

Furthermore, thanks to rubber's natural insulating properties, the user is also immune to electrical attacks, such as those from the Goro Goro no Mi, Electro or Zeus. His immunity to electricity also allows him to hit Enel, the user of the Goro Goro no Mi (an electricity Logia) without needing Haki.[11]

Thanks to Luffy's own creativity, both in and out of combat, this fruit has consistently proven itself to be among the most formidable, versatile, and unpredictable within the Paramecia class. The user's ability to stretch and twist like rubber to extreme lengths not only makes him immune to injuries that originate from such, but it also allows him to rebound, which can give him a great advantage in and out of battle. Stretching also allows the user to drastically increase the range of what would otherwise be considered a powerful close-range attack, turning it into a devastating mid-range or long-range attack. A stretched limb can also be used to store potential energy like a stretched spring, increasing the velocity by stretching his arm back resulting in increased power. Combined with Haki, his power is increased even more.

Luffy has also shown a limited ability of moving in mid-air, by grabbing onto something with an extended limb and pulling himself away from what could have been a fatal attack. This gives Luffy the option of several jumping and airborne attacks that would have been disadvantageous to most other people.

The fruit enables all parts of the consumer's body to behave like rubber, including organs. As such, Luffy has a bigger appetite than the average human, eating more than anyone else in his crew and always digesting it before anyone else is hungry again. His elastic properties also grant him some resistance towards underwater pressure, allowing him to fight while surrounded by an underwater environment.

In the anime, Luffy has used his stretching abilities to inhale great amounts of air to thus exhale a big gust of wind; this application of his powers was used to blow away Marigold's poisonous vapor from her venom spit and Magellan's poison breath.

Weaknesses

Despite all the great advantages Luffy gets by using his fruit, there are a number of weaknesses. One major risk of Luffy's powers is that his stretched limbs take a moment to unstretch back into place, leaving him vulnerable to attacks in the moments when his limbs are stretched, as Buggy and Kuro both demonstrated early on in the series. Luffy, however, has adapted his fighting style to minimize this risk.[12]

Luffy's elasticity reaching its limits, and starts to tear.

Initially, Luffy's body was similar to a rubber band, requiring him to use excessive motion to "throw" an attack. After the time-skip though, the extra movement became unnecessary, and Luffy is able to stretch easily. Additionally, rubber has a maximum limit to how far it can stretch; in the first SBS, Oda stated that Luffy's maximum stretching distance is "72 Gomu Gomus".[13] Attempting to go beyond this length can cause the user to bleed and be at risk of ripping.[14]

Luffy, of course, also suffers the same weaknesses to water,[2] like Fish-Man Karate and Seastone, as other Devil Fruit users. However, he sometimes appears to forget about this particular downside. And while contact with water and Seastone does drain Luffy of his energy and nullify his rubber-like ability to absorb blunt attacks (as with Smoker's jutte), his actual body still maintains its rubber-like make, allowing a third party to stretch his body for him.

In his youth, Luffy had a problem controlling his own abilities. Though he had an idea of how they would work, Luffy had trouble with aiming and the timing of his attacks, and he was continuously sent spinning by the recoil. However, he managed to counter these weaknesses with his continuous training in the jungle by the time he left to be a pirate.

Luffy getting hurt by a Haki-enhanced punch.

The Gomu Gomu no Mi user is also susceptible to Busoshoku Haki. Similar to water's effects, the usage of Haki only nullifies Luffy's ability to absorb blunt attacks. It does not however, revert Luffy's body to unstretchable flesh. Through the use of Busoshoku Haki, Luffy's grandfather was able to hurt him using only his fist (though Garp attributed this to "love"). When Luffy's crewmates (usually Nami) get angry at him, their punches are able to bypass Luffy's immunity to blunt attacks, although this is purely for comedic effect.

Another weakness noted by Doflamingo is that when Busoshoku Haki is applied to a part of Luffy's body, it stops being rubbery. This is proven with Luffy's Gomu Gomu no Thor Elephant Gun, where, despite rubber being a natural insulator of electricity, the Busoshoku Haki-enhanced attack itself discharges it. This weakness is negated by Gear Fourth however.

Usage

Luffy uses his Gomu Gomu no Mi abilities to power a fan-propelled boat.

The powers of the fruit have been used by Luffy in a variety of ways. These range from simply moving from one place to another in a rather reckless manner, to attacking an enemy with a barrage of fast and strong punches. He has also developed several peculiar methods of combat as time passed, adapting new forms by manipulating his elastic body, most prominent his "Gear Second" and "Gear Third" forms, allowing him to momentarily increase his strength in combat. After the timeskip, he has learned to use Haki in conjunction with the fruit's powers, as well as having more control over his forms. Later, during the time skip, Luffy developed a form known as Gear Fourth.[15][16]

The Kuja Pirates playing with Luffy's rubber body.

Of course Luffy, being who he is, does not only use his ability for battle. When with his crew, or even when partying with others, Luffy tends to use his elastic properties for the humor and joy of others, such as making funny faces, or using his elastic body to play around. Often throughout the series he would stretch his arm and steal food from others, much to their annoyance. He also uses his powers for transportation purposes, a primary example being his "Gomu Gomu no Rocket," which has him grab something with his arms and fire himself like a slingshot, which helps him travel great distances quickly. Luffy also has no problem letting other people play with his stretching body, which people tend to take advantage of.

History

Past

Twelve years ago, the fruit was on a government ship being guarded by the CP9 agent Who's-Who, but it was stolen by the Red Hair Pirates.[17][6] For a currently unclear reason, the fruit seemed to have been heavily valued by the World Government, as evidenced by Who's-Who being stationed to guard it; additionally, Who's-Who's failure to protect the fruit directly led to his dismissal from CP9 and eventual imprisonment.[5]

East Blue Saga

Romance Dawn Arc

During a visit to the friendly port of Foosha Village, the Red Hair Pirates took the fruit into a local bar, where it was found and unwittingly eaten by the seven-year-old Monkey D. Luffy.[1]

Early One Piece

According to Eiichiro Oda, Luffy was conceptualized with stretching powers specifically to allow for a "silly" fighting style that could make battles amusing as well as dramatic.[18] As such, the Gomu Gomu no Mi is one of the few elements apart from Luffy himself to be included in both of the series' Romance Dawn prototypes:

  • The first Romance Dawn, much like One Piece proper, depicts the fruit as the property of the Red Hair Pirates, which Luffy nonchalantly eats. It also describes the fruit's origins as a "legend tree" (幻の木 Maboroshi no ki?) that appears only once every fifty years.[19]
  • The second Romance Dawn depicts the fruit as the property of Luffy's grandfather (here an unnamed, retired pirate, but drawn largely identical to Monkey D. Garp), once again nonchalantly eaten by Luffy. This version notably depicts Luffy's first named attack: Right-Hand Stopper. Like in the final version of the One Piece manga, the fruit was first taken from an enemy.[20]

(According to a separate interview, the fruit's original name was simply the "Gomu no Mi" (ゴムの実?), but Oda changed it after an editor recalled this to be the name of a real-life fruit.[21])

Anime and Manga Differences

In the manga, Luffy ate the fruit—unnoticed—while Higuma and his gang began accosting the Red Hair Pirates, and his first demonstration of ability was when Shanks grabbed Luffy's arm when the boy was angrily walking out, only for the arm to stretch across the bar before the boy noticed. The anime's adaptation of these events depicts Luffy eating it out of anger directly stemming from Shanks' blithe attitude toward the bandits. In addition, the anime has Shanks notice Luffy eating the fruit almost immediately, and even heave Luffy upside-down in an effort to dislodge it, resulting in Luffy's legs stretching as the first demonstration of the power rather than his arm.[22]

However, most if not all subsequent adaptations of Chapter 1, such as the Episode of Luffy special and Episode 878, are closer to the manga's version of events.

Translation and Dub Issues

Name

Viz, 4Kids, and Funimation all translate this fruit's name as the "Gum-Gum Fruit". This translation comes from the etymology of the Japanese word "Gomu". "Gomu" is a loan word from Dutch, it comes from "Gom" which is used in Dutch to refer to rubber to identify it as "natural rubber" instead of "synthetic rubber". This is not only true of Japanese, but most worldly language derive their word for "Rubber" from "Gum".

Viz most likely selected "Gum-Gum" as a translation over "Rubber Rubber" due to "Gum" being phonically similar to "Gomu". The only English version of the series to ever translate it out as the "Rubber Rubber Fruit" is the Odex version. This is because it has no connections to the North American versions at all. Despite translating Gomu as "Gum", all English versions refer to Luffy as a "rubber man".

In the Filipino dub of One Piece, the word used is "Goma-Goma", "goma" being the word for "rubber".

In the anime, the description of Luffy's cell in Charlotte Mont-d'Or's book prison, the fruit's name is romanized as "Gomgom no mi".

Origin

Curiously, the Viz manga describes the fruit as "of the Gum-Gum Tree" in at least two chapters (as well as an early promotional blurb), apparently in conflation with the origin given by the aforementioned Romance Dawn prototypes.[23][24] To date, whether this origin actually applies to One Piece proper has been neither proven nor disproven in-story.

Trivia

Oda's depiction of Zoro using the Gomu Gomu no Mi.

  • One Piece Magazine Vol.6 features an illustration of Roronoa Zoro having hypothetically been granted the Gomu Gomu no Mi's powers. Eiichiro Oda drew it following a fan request.
  • This is the first Devil Fruit, as well as the first Paramecia-type devil fruit to be seen in the series. It is also the first Devil Fruit to be seen before its consumption.
  • Luffy has far more named Devil Fruit attacks than any other Devil Fruit user.
  • In Romance Dawn, Version 2, the Gomu Gomu no Mi was estimated by Luffy's grandfather to be worth Beli.png5.000.000.000.
  • Both Gecko Moria and Charlotte Brûlée were able to imitate the usage of the Gomu Gomu no Mi using their Devil Fruits, the Kage Kage no Mi and Mira Mira no Mi respectively. While Brûlée mirrored the techniques herself, Moria used Kage Kakumei to manipulate Oars' shadow to perform the attacks.
  • Other characters have imitated the naming pattern of the fruit's techniques.
    • Oars has used an attack called "Gomu Gomu no Shirimochi" during his fight against the Straw Hats.
    • In the anime, Bentham tried to fool Magellan by using Gomu Gomu no Okama Pistol, Okama Gatling, and Okama Giant Scythe, though he only copy the naming pattern and not the attacks themselves.[26]
  • Gasparde and Charlotte Katakuri both mimicked the Gomu Gomu no Mi's rubbery physiology via their Devil Fruits that allows them to turn their bodies into a substance that possesses elastic properties:
    • Gasparde's Ame Ame no Mi turns his body into candy syrup, that he can stretch forward, and create a slingshot effect with his arms similar to Luffy's "Gomu Gomu no Rocket".[27]
    • Katakuri's Mochi Mochi no Mi turns his body into sticky mochi, which he can stretch forward very much like Luffy's.[28] He can also expand his limbs to mimic the "Gomu Gomu no Elephant Gun".[29]

SBS-Based Trivia

  • One of the fans asked Oda if Luffy's penis could stretch, and Oda answered that it could.[30]
  • One of the fans asked Oda why he gave Luffy rubber powers, and Oda answered that it was because it was the funniest power, explaining that no matter how serious the story in the manga was, the reader would be able to relax and observe with interest what is happening.[31]
    • This question was asked from Oda twice, first in Shonen Jump, and then in SBS.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 1 Chapter 1 (p. 13-15) and Episode 4, Unnoticed, Luffy takes the Gomu Gomu no Mi from the Red Hair Pirates' chest and eats it. In the manga (and some later anime adaptations), the fruit is fully depicted in a sketch by Lucky Roux.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 1 Chapter 1 (p. 20-21) and Episode 4, Shanks' crew notices the fruit is gone from the chest.
  3. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 1 Chapter 1 (p. 48-50) and Episode 1, Luffy is first seen using the fruit.
  4. 4.0 4.1 SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 30 (p. 104), the Gomu Gomu no Mi is confirmed to be a Paramecia.
  5. 5.0 5.1 One Piece Manga — Chapter 1017 (p. 17), Who's who reveals his past.
  6. 6.0 6.1 One Piece Manga — Chapter 1018 (p. 7), Who's-Who confirms that the Gomu Gomu no Mi was stolen by the Red Hair Pirates.
  7. Romance Dawn, Version 1, the Gomu Gomu no Mi is shown without any swirls in the first version of Romance Dawn.
  8. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 57 Chapter 557 (p. 16-17) and Episode 465, Luffy remarks that he will survive the massive drop because he's the only one made of rubber.
  9. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 3 Chapter 26 (p. 12-14) and Episode 10, Luffy falls off a cliff after falling asleep from hypnosis, and is unharmed.
  10. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 36 Chapter 346 (p. 3) and Episode 244, Luffy escapes from Lucci's stake traps.
  11. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 30 Chapter 279 (p. 14-16) and Episode 182, Enel's lightning attacks have no effect on Luffy's rubber body, and Luffy's attack bypasses Enel's Logia intangibility.
  12. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 3 Chapter 18 and Episode 7, Luffy uses his Scythe technique against Buggy.
  13. SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 4 (p. 90), fan question: how far can Luffy stretch his arm?
  14. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 85 Chapter 850 (p. 5) and Episode 816, Luffy pushes the limits of his power trying to escape Big Mom's prisoners book.
  15. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 78 Chapter 783 (p. 19) and Episode 725, Luffy begins activating Gear Fourth.
  16. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 78 Chapter 784 (p. 9) and Episode 726, Luffy states he developed Gear Fourth on Rusukaina.
  17. Vivre Card - One Piece Visual Dictionary (Card #0018), Lucky Roux's history reveals that he took the Gomu Gomu no Mi from an enemy crew.
  18. SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 65 (p. 46), Oda explains to a reader why Luffy was given a fruit as "weak" as the Gomu Gomu no Mi.
  19. One Piece Manga, One ShotRomance Dawn, Version 1, the first version of the Gomu Gomu no Mi.
  20. One Piece Manga, One ShotRomance Dawn, Version 2, the second version of the Gomu Gomu no Mi.
  21. Interview with website Manga Heaven, December 2007. Retrieved here, translated here. Note that "Gomu no Mi" is not known to be the name of any fruit in colloquial Japanese; on the other hand, real-life rubber trees do produce distinctive (if generally inedible) fruit.
  22. One Piece Anime — Episode 4.
  23. One Piece Manga — Vol. 1 Chapter 2 (p. 23).
  24. One Piece Manga — Vol. 3 Chapter 22 (p. 11).
  25. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 77 Chapter 766 (p. 3) and Episode 705, Diez Barrels mentions how much money the deal with the Marines was worth.
  26. One Piece Anime — Episode 435.
  27. One Piece Movie 4, Gasparde using his syrup body to mimic Luffy's rubber powers.
  28. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 87 Chapter 877 (p. 10-11) and Episode 849, Katakuri stretching his arm like Luffy's, and Carrot notes their similarities.
  29. One Piece Manga and Anime — Vol. 87 Chapter 879 (p. 15-17) and Episode 852, Katakuri imitates Gomu Gomu no Elephant Gun.
  30. SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 8 (p. 44), Oda confirms that Luffy's penis can stretch.
  31. SBS One Piece Manga — Vol. 65 (p. 46), Oda explains why he gave Luffy rubber powers.

External Links

  • Rubber – Wikipedia article about rubber
  • Yubari King – Wikipedia article about the actual fruit the Devil Fruit is apparently shaped after
  • Rubber Man - TV tropes wiki article on the rubber super power trope
  • Firearm – Wikipedia article about firearms in general for which a majority of Luffy's Devil Fruit techniques are named after
  • Blood Doping – Wikipedia article on the process Gear Second utilizes
  • Ruffys Attacken - German One Piece Encyclopedia article listing Luffy's attacks

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