Zoro’s story is that of a dream, a promise and an ambition, but also that of an inherited will. One of the central themes of One Piece.
Since Zoro’s childhood, he has always been a conqueror, beating everyone in Koushiro’s dojo except Kuina, against whom he lost 2001 times. He recognizes Kuina as an incredible swordsman despite her own lack of faith in her potential, given her gender. This is where we can see Zoro’s perspective on dreams. No matter your gender, where you were born or who you are, everyone can dream. Your gender, place of birth or otherwise should not get in the way. This is one of the main reasons why Zoro is so furious with Kaido and Orochi. They rob Wano of his dreams and his freedom, something he values so much.
When Kuina died, Zoro took his sword from Koushiro. But Zoro not only inherited his sword, but by inheriting his sword, he inherited his will.
We believe that when Zoro fights Mihawk, they will both be using Advanced Conqueror Haki and cleaving the sky, with sunlight descending on Zoro, signaling that Zoro’s name is reaching for the heavens. And Zoro will say something like, “It looks like she’s watching. I can’t afford to lose now. And when he beats Mihawk, he will call Kuina the greatest swordsman in the world because she is the only person Zoro could never beat.
When he was beaten by Mihawk, 2 of his 3 swords broke.
The only sword that hasn’t been shattered is the Wado Ichimonji, the sword that represents inherited will. This means that even though Zoro was defeated, his will remained strong. His will has never been, and never will be broken. On the contrary, it has grown stronger.
Zoro declares that he will never lose again, and he chooses this moment to call Luffy the Pirate King for the first time. This means that he is so certain to become the strongest swordsman in the world that the only person capable of leading the strongest swordsman in the world is the Pirate King himself. It is important. Remember this.
In Thriller Bark, Zoro sacrifices himself for Luffy. And when asked why, he answers…
Zoro gives more importance to Luffy than to his own ambitions and dreams. If he can’t save Luffy, he can’t protect his dreams, because after all, the only person capable of leading the world’s strongest swordsman is the Pirate King himself. If he can’t make Luffy the Pirate Kingso how can he be the strongest swordsman in the world?
In Enies Lobby, Zoro stops Usopp from rejoining the crew unless he apologizes to Luffy. Because the captain is the crew. By disrespecting Luffy, Usopp disrespected Zoro’s decision to follow Luffy. For Zoro, the crew is sacred. Leaving the Crew means disrespecting the very foundations of trust the Crew, and especially Zoro, have placed in you. And that pisses Zoro off.
Zoro bows to Mihawk and begs him to train him. Why does a person so deeply rooted in honor and pride beg the guy he wants to beat? Because he has to make Luffy the Pirate King. Because the only person capable of leading the strongest swordsman in the world is the Pirate King himself.
In Punk Hazard, Zoro yells at Luffy to take things seriously. Because Zoro has placed his trust in Luffy as the man worthy of leading the Best Swordsman. Wano has a lot of moments where Zoro empathizes with the people of Wano, because like I said, they were robbed of their freedom and their ability to dream. They are given bad food and they are relegated to not showing their emotions, and this annoys Zoro.
And do we need to talk about the King fight? It says a lot about Zoro’s character, motivations, and more. When he obtained the Advanced Conqueror’s Haki, all he thought was that he was closer to fulfilling the promise he made to Luffy and Kuina.
Oda gave Zoro a lot of character.