The Vinsmoke Family is a powerful and infamous family of Underworld mercenaries, and the family from which Sanji hails. They are also the reigning royal family of the Germa Kingdom, as well as the former dynastic conquerors and rulers of North Blue. As an adjunct to their rule over the Germa Kingdom, they are also the commanders of the Kingdom's Underworld army, Germa 66.
In the past, the Vinsmoke Family managed to conquer the entire North Blue with their military might. They continue to rule over the ocean-going Germa Kingdom, and still possess the authority and privileges of royalty, including the right to attend Reverie. Furthermore, their patriarch is powerful enough to directly influence the bounty system, by both increasing bounties and changing their conditions of capture.
Activities and Abilities
The Family currently conducts its primary operations within the Underworld, including leading Germa 66 in mercenary activities against other military forces. Among known royal families, the Vinsmokes are unusual in that they command their kingdom's military forces directly in combat (a responsibility that only the Gorgon Sisters share); they are also unique in engaging in constant warfare with other nations, in order to reestablish their former dominion over North Blue. The Vinsmokes also appear to have impressive connections in the Underworld, with the Underworld emperor "Big News" Morgans claiming deep ties between the family and his newspaper company, the World Economic Journal. These activities and attributes have led them to develop a prominent and infamous reputation throughout the Underworld; however, their notoriety seems to extend beyond these boundaries, with Brook and Robin both recognizing the Vinsmoke name.
The Vinsmokes possess advanced combat technology, which they use adeptly in battle, and which is so advanced that even the Yonko Big Mom is interested in them. They have also developed cloning technology, which they have used to create a virtually inexhaustible army, as well as other genetic modification technologies which have endowed the children of the family with superhuman abilities. Despite the illegality of cloning, Judge nevertheless managed to remain in the trust of the World Government, showing either a high favor or powerful secrecy.
The Vinsmokes' many subjects behave with absolute loyalty and obedience. They will always be willing to sacrifice their lives for their sovereigns without aforethought. When called upon to do so through the command of "Wall" (壁 Kabe?), they will shield the royal in "danger" from any attack by merely positioning themselves in front of the Vinsmoke.
Sora, Warrior of the Sea
In their capacity as the commanders of Germa 66, the Vinsmoke Family are also the villains of the World Economic Journal comic strip, Sora, Warrior of the Sea. As Marine propaganda, the comic's premise centers on fictionalized accounts of their conflict with the equally fictional Marine hero, Sora. It is unknown whether the comic's protagonist has any connection to the Vinsmoke matriarch, who shares the same name.
It is later explained that Germa 66 were chosen as the model for the comic's villain group because the Vinsmoke name was once considered synonymous with evil. Furthermore, in Vito's brief thoughts on the comic, there are several featured Germa 66 agents that resemble members of the family. Specifically, the two figures wearing cloaks that bear the numbers "1" and "2" are likely references to Ichiji and Niji, while the helmeted figure towering above them is a likely reference to Judge.
|Vinsmoke Judge||Vinsmoke Sora †|
|Vinsmoke Reiju||Vinsmoke Ichiji||Vinsmoke Niji||Vinsmoke Sanji ‡||Vinsmoke Yonji|
|Germa Kingdom||Germa 66|
- †: the character is deceased.
- *: the character's status is unknown, or show additional information. Hovering the symbol may give further details.
- ≠: the character is non-canon.
- ‡: the character is no longer part of this group. Hovering the symbol may give further details.
The family currently consists of a father (the family patriarch), one daughter, and four sons; furthermore, the sons of the family were all born on the same day. The patriarch is infamous throughout the Underworld. The family matriarch is deceased, after succumbing to the aftereffects of a powerful but lethal drug.
The children of the Vinsmoke Family were genetically modified by Judge, specifically for the purpose of creating elite military commanders who would lead Germa 66 to achieve Judge's ambitions. However, Sanji was labelled a 'failure' early in his childhood, after exhibiting behaviors undesirable to Judge and consistently being outperformed by his siblings in physical tests.
Sometime in the past, the Vinsmoke Family ruled all of North Blue with their military might. Presently, while they no longer rule over any land, they remain the reigning royals of the Germa Kingdom. However, their patriarch retains the ambition to reestablish the family's dominion over North Blue; to realize that ambition, the family participated in the infamous event known as the Conquest of Four Nations, during which they assassinated the kings of four North Blue nations all at once.
Prior to the birth of his children, Judge worked in conjunction with Vegapunk as a member of a lawless scientific research team. After the team discovered the Lineage Factor, the World Government arrested Vegapunk and forced the team to disband. Judge returned to the Germa Kingdom and resumed his research in secret, eventually developing the family's current cloning and genetic modification technologies.
At some point, Judge met Sora and married her, thereby crowning her the queen consort of the Germa Kingdom. Sora gave birth to their first child and only daughter, Reiju, before becoming pregnant with quadruplet sons three years later. Before their sons' birth, however, the queen argued with her husband over his plans to surgically manipulate their Lineage Factor. While Sora wanted their sons to retain normal human emotions, Judge was only concerned about giving them power, even if it meant making them into emotionless beings. Sora was eventually forced to undergo the surgery, but she took a drug intended to counteract the surgery's effects.
Twenty-one years ago, Ichiji, Niji, Sanji, and Yonji were born while the Germa Kingdom was in North Blue. Following their birth, Sora began suffering the aftereffects of the drug she took and was stricken with a severe illness that left her bedridden in the kingdom's medical ward and barely able to hold down food. Sanji, who loved his mother in particular, tried to learn how to cook in order to help her get better by feeding her meals that he delivered to her himself, and she affectionately ate them even though they were poorly prepared. Eventually, the queen succumbed to her illness and was buried at an ornate grave memorializing her.
After Sora passed on, Judge took it upon himself to raise his offspring the way he wanted, training them to become conquerors. Judge informed his children that their bodies had been enhanced with his genetic modification technologies, and that through training, they would develop the power and abilities to lead Germa 66 to new glories. During their training regime, however, it soon became apparent that Sanji had not developed the same superhuman abilities as his siblings, leading Judge to conclude that he was a failure. This, combined with Sanji's predisposition towards acting kindly to the family's servants and animals, and even feeding a pet rat, led his siblings to subject him to cruel bullying, and eventually to Judge renouncing him as his son. Judge staged a state wake for Sanji, during which he informed the kingdom that Sanji had died in an accident; at the same time, he had other soldiers place an iron mask on Sanji and lock him in the castle dungeon. While Ichiji, Niji, and Yonji responded to the news of Sanji's "death" with a mixture of delight and indifference, Reiju hid her concern behind a smile.
During Sanji's six months of imprisonment, the other Vinsmoke child continued their training while Sanji, after requesting cookbooks to pass the time in his cell, discovering a story about the All Blue that gave him a dream to pursue one day. When Sanji was eight years old, the Germa Kingdom crossed the Red Line into the East Blue, preparing to mount a massive battle. Around this time, Sanji's brothers learned he wasn't actually dead and resumed their abuse of him. Reiju, after overhearing her brothers in the dungeon, also discovered Sanji and informed him that the kingdom was crossing into East Blue. As the kingdom's amphibious ships climbed the Red Line, Sanji told Reiju of his desire to escape Germa and become a cook, and a sympathetic Reiju bent apart the bars of his cell and warned him not to mess up his one chance to escape. Sanji retrieved the key to remove his iron mask but was spotted by Judge, against whom Sanji pulled a knife out of fear that his father would try to stop him. However, Judge appreciated this convenient manner of removing Sanji from his life, but told Sanji that, if he did leave, he must never speak of his parentage again.
In tears, Sanji fled from the Germa Kingdom with Judge's permission and Reiju's help, as Germa's invasion of Cozia began. On Cozia's coast, Reiju tearfully promised her little brother that he would one day meet people who would treat him with the kindness he deserved. The Germa soldiers disregarded the cruise ship in the port that had nothing to do with their mission, so Sanji (following Reiju's directions) was able to stow away on it.
After cutting ties with his family, Sanji worked on the Orbit and befriended its cooks, but was wasteful with the food on the ship. In response, the other cooks warned him that, out on the sea, it was vital to conserve as much food one as possible. When he was nine years old, the Orbit was attacked by the Cook Pirates and then sunk in a storm, which also sank the attacking pirate ship; all occupants aboard both ships were presumed lost at sea. Sanji and the pirate captain, Zeff, were marooned on an island for 85 days, during which time they almost starved to death. After running out of food, a desperate Sanji tried to attack Zeff, only to learn that Zeff had amputated and eaten one of his legs in order to give all the food they had to Sanji. After this revelation, the two discussed their mutual dream of finding All Blue; additionally, Zeff mentioned that, should they ever be rescued, he would open a floating restaurant that would cater to any hungry customer, ensuring tht no one would have to face starvation out on sea as they had. After finally being rescued, Sanji worked under Zeff as they built the Baratie, using the treasure in Zeff's possession to finance it, with Sanji becoming the sous chef. Some time after Sanji left the family, Judge started searching for him once it became clear that Sanji was still of potential use to him to fulfill his ambitions.
Ten years later, Sanji left Baratie to join the Straw Hat Pirates, taking part in their pirate activities and earning the attention of the World Government. When he received his first bounty, there was no photograph of Sanji's face, so a crude drawing was substituted; as a result of the misleading image, the Marines that Judge sent to investigate went after Duval instead. However, when Sanji received his second bounty two years later, it contained a picture of his real face, leading Judge to order both an increase in the bounty amount and a change of bounty condition (from "Dead or Alive" to "Only Alive").
Some time between the Curly Hat Pirates' encounter with the Big Mom Pirates off the coast of Dressrosa, and the Big Mom Pirates' arrival on Zou, the Vinsmoke and Charlotte Families entered into a political alliance that was to be sealed with an arranged wedding between the third Vinsmoke son, Sanji, and the 35th Charlotte daughter, Pudding. Sanji, shocked that his past had been brought up again, deduced that his father was also responsible for the changes to his bounty. Intent on tying up all loose ends from his past, Sanji reluctantly left Zou to confront his family at Whole Cake Island.
Whole Cake Island Arc
Luffy and the Sanji retrieval team first encountered one of Germa 66's ships as they entered Big Mom's territory. Upon seeing him aboard the ship, the team initially mistook Vinsmoke Yonji for Sanji, due to the similarities in their appearance, but Yonji introduced himself while claiming that his relationship to Sanji was a secret (although the Straw Hats immediately deduced his identity). When Yonji refused to hand over an antidote for the dying Luffy's poisoning, Vinsmoke Reiju intervened and saved Luffy by absorbing the toxin. After a brief discussion of the Vinsmoke Family's history with Brook, she and Yonji returned to their ship and agreed not to report the team's presence, out of concern that it might jeopardize the wedding.
Three days before the wedding, Germa 66, led by Vinsmoke Ichiji and Vinsmoke Niji, ended a two-year civil war on Broc Coli Island on behalf of one of the sides. After confirming receipt of their payment, they were informed that Sanji had arrived on Whole Cake Island and promised an unseen individual, via Den Den Mushi, that they would arrive on the island the day before the wedding.
As the Germa Kingdom began to assemble at Whole Cake Island, Sanji reunited with his younger brother, sister, and father for the first time in 13 years. The meetings proved to be hostile on Sanji's part, as he physically attacked Yonji, rejected Reiju's efforts to convince him to accept the marriage, and argued with his father, who then told him to settle things with a fight.
While Yonji received treatment for the wounds he received from Sanji, Sanji and Judge began their duel in a courtyard outside the Germa castle. They exchanged blows, until Judge eventually gained the upper hand and surprised Sanji with the "Wall" move, in which his lightning spear pierced one of the Germa 66 agents and shocked Sanji. After returning to the Germa castle, Judge explained to Sanji that the purpose of the Vinsmokes' alliance with the "deranged" Big Mom: to secure the forces necessary to retake North Blue. He explained that he had only sought Sanji out after all this time apart to meet Big Mom's condition for an alliance: to have one of the Vinsmoke sons marry one of the Charlotte daughters. Judge continued by stating that, since he did not want to give over one of his other "valuable" sons to Big Mom's demands, Sanji was his logical choice. Judge concluded by telling Sanji that he never truly considered Sanji one of his sons, and, while Sanji was distracted by their conversation, he had Reiju strap two exploding bracelets on his wrists (the keys to which are in Big Mom's possession), in order to ensure his cooperation with the wedding.
On the day before the wedding, Ichiji and Niji received a hero's reception from Germa 66's soldiers upon their return to the Germa Kingdom. Judge expressed joy at his beloved sons' arrival and Reiju smiled at the news, while Yonji voiced his anticipation at their imminent reunion with Sanji. Sanji, however, trembled as he observed Ichiji and Niji's arrival from the balcony of his room.
Later, the newly reunited family dined in the throne room of their castle. As they ate, they discussed the Broc Coli Island war, as well as the likely imminent revocation of their right to attend Reverie. Niji proceeded to provoke Sanji, stating that the siblings had often laughed over the possible ways and places in which Sanji might have died since leaving them as a child. Sanji's only response was to tell Niji to finish his food, triggering an argument between them which culminated in Niji attacking the head chef, Cosette; Sanji defended her, before eating the food that had spilled onto the ground and complimenting her on her cooking. The rest of his family, excluding Reiju, expressed disgust at his actions and Niji prepared to kick Sanji, but Judge warned Niji not to do anything to Sanji so close to the wedding. As Sanji and his family traded insults, Judge pulled out a photograph of Zeff; Judge revealed that, through Big Mom's connections, the Vinsmokes had learnt of Sanji's presence in the Baratie 2 years ago, and of the restaurant's exact present location. Judge threatened to have Zeff killed if Sanji did not cooperate with the wedding, leading Sanji to recall periods of his childhood under Zeff's tutelage.
After the meal, Sanji discovered a bloodied Cosette in the castle, likely attacked by Niji. Yonji appeared and goaded Sanji into seeking out Niji, offering to take Sanji to Niji. Sanji agreed, but Yonji instead led Sanji to a sequestered laboratory within the Vinsmoke castle, inside of which Sanji discovered (much to his shock) a multitude of Germa 66 clones, each within a liquid-filled compartment. Yonji began to explain the extent of the family's cloning and genetic modification capacities, before being stopped by Sanji. At that moment, they were interrupted by Ichiji and Niji, with the latter's arrival causing Sanji to jump up and attack Niji. A brief fight ensued before Niji overpowered Sanji, using the threat against Zeff as a reminder to Sanji to stay in line; Ichiji then "welcomed" Sanji home before reminding his younger brother of his inferior status within the family.
After Ichiji, Niji and Yonji left the laboratory, Reiju arrived and found a bloodied Sanji on the floor. She proceeded to ask him why he decided to return to the Germa Kingdom, a place he had tried so hard to forget. The two are later seen in Sanji's room in the castle, where Reiju gave Sanji a face mask which removed the swelling in his face. She warned him that this was all the help he would receive from her, before asking him how he gained his chivalrous ethic. Remembering Zeff, Sanji gave Reiju a cryptic reply, before a maid arrived in the room and informed them that the preparations were ready for the family to leave for the pre-wedding engagement ceremony.
A short time later, the Vinsmokes departed the Germa Kingdom in their royal carriage and headed for Whole Cake Chateau. On the way, they encountered Luffy and Nami. A shocked Sanji, in view of his watching family, coldly rejected Luffy's request to return with him and prepared for a confrontation. However, the fight was completely one-sided as no matter how many times Sanji attacked or insulted Luffy, the latter refused to fight back. After Luffy finally collapsed, Sanji returned to his family's carriage, but Luffy staggered back onto his feet and stated that he knew Sanji never meant what he said and that he would wait for Sanji to return. With the carriage continuing on to Whole Cake Chateau, Sanji broke down in tears as his brothers laughed at the events.
Just before the carriage arrived at Whole Cake Chateau, the Vinsmokes noted the commotion throughout the capital, overhearing that Big Mom's army were preparing to descend on and capture Luffy. Once inside the Chateau, the family dined with Big Mom and Pudding; during the meal, Big Mom apologized for the commotion but informed them that the matter had been taken care of. She and Judge toasted to their children's upcoming wedding, with Big Mom expressing particular interest in Sanji's professional background as a chef and thus his suitability for Pudding. Pudding secretly slipped Sanji a note, asking for a private conversation.
In Pudding's room, Pudding informed Sanji of her encounter with the retrieval team. She also begged Sanji to make a run for it before it was too late, but Sanji revealed that Big Mom had already taken the final precaution of cuffing him with the exploding wristlets. A distraught Pudding apologized for her mother's actions, but a reflective Sanji confided in her that his only concern now was to ensure that the friends he had encountered after fleeing the "hell" of Germa would not become collateral damage in his family's affairs. He informed Pudding that he would attempt to strike a deal with Big Mom, trading his cooperation with the marriage arrangement for Big Mom's agreement to let the Straw Hats leave safely.
Later, in the Queen's Chamber of Whole Cake Chateau, Sanji met with Big Mom and presented her his deal. To his surprise, she accepted readily, stating that the alliance with the Vinsmokes superseded all other matters and that she would overlook the Straw Hats' past actions if they did not meddle further.
The Vinsmoke Family was then invited by Big Mom on a tour of her library, with Big Mom proudly showing them her prized collection of rare creatures. Reiju expressed surprise at the fact that the creatures were alive inside books, while Niji expressed disgust at the fact that she had even trapped humans. Judge then pointed out that he had not seen any giants since arriving in Totto Land - a significant omission, given the country's claim to being a land of all races - but an annoyed Big Mom quickly stated that he must have just missed them. Sanji remained in his guest room, hoping silently that his friends would cooperate with his deal with Big Mom.
Sometime later in the Vinsmoke Family's guest room, Judge had a private discussion with Ichiji, Niji, and Yonji. Judge told his sons that Pudding would be living with them on Germa Kingdom after the wedding so they could use her as leverage against Big Mom. Meanwhile, Reiju was shown wandering through a hallway, heavily injured. Later, when Sanji tried to deliver food to Pudding's room, he discovered in secret that Pudding had injured and captured Reiju inside. Brother and sister listened as Pudding revealed that Big Mom had no intention to honor the alliance with the Vinsmokes, as she planned to murder the family during the wedding ceremony and thereafter acquire their technology (including Germa 66). Pudding then altered Reiju's memories using the powers of the Memo Memo no Mi, before instructing the guards to take Reiju to the infirmary.
After Reiju received treatment for her leg injury, Sanji snuck into her room and incapacitated the guard. Sanji told a confused Reiju about what had happened to her, which Reiju immediately believed. However, to Sanji's shock, Reiju seemed content with allowing the entire Vinsmoke Family (with the exception of Sanji) to be assassinated, stating that their actions as murderers justified this outcome. Sanji vehemently objected to allowing Reiju to be killed, but Reiju responded by revealing to Sanji the circumstances around their mother's death. She also explained that the wristlets she had cuffed him with earlier were fakes she had switched out with the real pair, before urging him forcefully to leave the island with the Straw Hats.
A short time after Sanji left the infirmary, Reiju heard Luffy wreaking havoc in the corridor outside. As Luffy passed the infirmary, Reiju grabbed Luffy's wrist and hurled him into the medical room, closing the door behind her to hide Luffy from his pursuers. She informed Luffy that her brother was already aware of Pudding's deception, but was refusing to leave the island out of concern for the Baratie cooks and the Straw Hats. Knowing that Sanji was not deceived, a grateful Luffy thanked Reiju before (much to Reiju's shock) jumping out of the infirmary window. Afterwards, Reiju stood by the same window and gazed outside, pondering to herself.
After leaving his sister, Sanji sat elsewhere in the Chateau, evaluating everything that had happened before deciding that he could not turn back now. However, his thoughts were interrupted by the arrival of Bobbin, who spotted the basket of food that Sanji had prepared for Pudding. When Bobbin grabbed some meat and prepared to eat it, Sanji recalled Luffy's promise to starve rather than eat another person's cooking. Enraged, he kicked Bobbin into the wall, telling him that the meat was not for him, before grabbing the basket and running to the location where Luffy had promised to be waiting for him.
After running through Sweet City and arriving at their promised meeting place, Sanji searched through the bodies of the soldiers that Luffy and Nami had earlier fought. Eventually, he heard the growling of Luffy's stomach and spotted him leaning against the deceased King Baum, asleep and weakened by hunger. Luffy awakened to the smell of Sanji's food, which Sanji passed to Luffy and invited him to eat. After Luffy finished, Sanji told Luffy to leave the island without him, citing three reasons: his previous attacks on Luffy no longer entitled him to return to Luffy's ship; his family holding the Baratie hostage; and (despite his hatred for them) his desire to save his family from Big Mom's assassination plot. An angry Luffy responded by punching Sanji and ordering him to tell Luffy what he really wanted. After Sanji broke down and confessed his true desire to return to the Thousand Sunny, Luffy answered that he knew Sanji was not the type of person to allow his family to be killed, and that he and the rest of the Straw Hats would help ruin the ceremony.
During the night before the wedding ceremony, Judge, Ichiji, Niji and Yonji celebrated the anticipated sealing of their alliance with Big Mom. While they drank, they discussed the imminent addition of Big Mom's strength to their own forces and their planned reconquest of the North Blue, before toasting Sanji for being their sacrifice. After they retired, Reiju remained awake in the infirmary, sitting by the window and continuing to ponder to herself. Sanji, meanwhile, reunited with the rest of the retrieval team, now joined by Jinbei, as they met with the Fire Tank Pirates and Caesar Clown to negotiate a possible alliance against Big Mom.
On the morning of the wedding, as both Totto Land and the Germa Kingdom awoke to anticipatory celebrations, Judge, Ichiji, and Niji were shown getting dressed for the ceremony. As Niji went to wake Yonji up, Judge and Ichiji wondered where Reiju was, before being informed that she was being catered to in a separate room. Sanji, now aware of the full details of the alliance's plan to assassinate Big Mom, returned to his room to prepare for his "wedding". An hour later, the family headed to the wedding venue on the roof of Whole Cake Chateau. As they made their way through the castle, Yonji asked Reiju where she was the night before, and Reiju answered that she had requested a separate room in order to avoid the ruckus of their drinking celebrations. After Niji received confirmation that the bride and groom were both dressed and prepared, Reiju wondered about what Sanji was planning, given that he was aware of Big Mom's plans.
After the arrival of Big Mom and the commencement of the banquet, the family's various members partook in the festivities: Judge was seated at the main table, conversing with the Underworld emperor Morgans; Niji spoke to Charlotte Galette and another female guest; Yonji savored some of the surrounding treats; and Ichiji sat beside another emperor, Drug Peclo, and conversed with the other guests at his table. Reiju, however, was alone in not enjoying the festivities, sitting disinterestedly beside the emperor Giberson and trying to avoid him. Soon after, however, a guard announced the arrival of Sanji and Pudding, and the pair appeared in a flying teacup atop Prometheus in order to commence the wedding ceremony.
- The children of the Vinsmoke family all share similarities in their names, epithets, and appearances. Sanji, however, has variants in the two last categories:
- The names of the children of the Vinsmoke Family follow the pattern "(number) + ji" for males, and "(number) + ju" for females: Rei(0)ju, Ichi(1)ji, Ni(2)ji, San(3)ji, and Yon(4)ji.
- All the children of the Family share the characteristic curled eyebrows:
- The eyebrows of most of the siblings curl in an anti-clockwise direction (i.e. to the left side of his face), resembling the number "6". This is possibly referenced in the name of their organization, Germa 66.
- Sanji's eyebrows are the only ones known to both curl in a clockwise direction (i.e. to the right side).
- In both Chapter 832 and Chapter 841, the edge of Reiju's right eye is shown. It appears that her right eyebrow doesn't curl towards the left, which would make her overall facial features symmetrical.
- All the children also have a color-themed epithet: Reiju's is "Poison Pink" (ポイズンピンク Poizun Pinku?), Ichiji's is "Sparking Red" (スパーキングレッド Supākingu Reddo?), Niji's is "Electric Blue" (デンゲキブルー Dengeki Burū?), Yonji's is "Winch Green" (ウインチグリーン Uinchi Gurīn?), and Sanji's is "Black Leg" (黒脚 Kuro Ashi?).
- Sanji's epithet differs fundamentally from the others because it is written in kanji, not katakana. Additionally, the color in his epithet is the first, rather than second, word.
- Sanji is also the only sibling whose hair color (blonde) does not match the color in his epithet (although he has a black goatee).
- In addition to the above, the four sons share further similarities just between them: