The classic anime and manga One Piece has passed the 1000th episode mark. And while its protagonist Luffy hasn’t become King of the Pirates yet, he has at least become the new star of TikTok. In a new viral trend on the video-sharing app, music from the bumpers has become a popular audio theme for people to talk about the ups and downs of falling in love — including what dating really is like.
Generally speaking, the videos start with some sort of happy message about falling in love. This TikTok with 2.5 million views shows a person taking a selfie video while smiling with the onscreen text, “falls deeply in love with a boy” while a cheery horn tune plays. Then, once the jingle is done, it cuts to a moodier, darker tune — this is where a person usually talks about a drawback of falling in love. In this video, the person says, “met him on Discord” as they take a selfie video of them bug-eyed.
bro the first clip feels so awkard #discord #valorant #minecraft #fyp♬ Whoever uses this sound is gay - Obito
Most videos start with that honeymoon phase, but then present different drawbacks. Here are two similar examples.
and smacks my a$$ like a drum @niamhadkins♬ Whoever uses this sound is gay - Obito
People have also adapted the joke to talk about their cats.
Meatball has her downsides I guess #fyp #cat #kitten #meatball♬ Whoever uses this sound is gay - Obito
Why isn’t the last part of this sound playing? This happens sometimes with tiktok sounds HOW FIX♬ Whoever uses this sound is gay - Obito
So what’s the One Piece connection? The jingles used in the videos come from the show’s bumpers that were used in early arcs of the anime, like “East Blue” or “Alabasta.” Each member of the Straw Hats has their own theme based on their character. Luffy’s, for example, is a bright and cheery horn that mirrors his sunny, easy-going personality. His is the tune used for the falling in love portion of the trend.
The second portion of the trend comes from Zoro the swordsman's jingle. In One Piece, the swordsman Zoro is a focused, grumpy character, and so he has a much more dramatic, serious tune to match his character. The audio combines both Luffy’s and Zoro’s to have a sound similar to the “I’m so happy, I’m so sad sound” where people will use Luffy’s jingle to convey something that’s positive, and Zoro’s to express a downside (albeit in a sometimes joking manner).
One Piece isn’t exactly a story about love. It’s an action anime that follows a band of pirates as their captain, Luffy, attempts to become the greatest pirate on the entire globe. It’s an anime touchstone and considered by fans to be one of the “big three” of popular anime; and it’s getting a live version remake from Netflix, as well.