A bit late, but here are some thoughts about 1071:
- First, Lucci continues to be entertaining. I love it how the villain knows he's outmatched and yet perseveres, as this is a trait usually displayed by Luffy instead. I feel he will figure out what Gear 5 is and its weaknesses, thus allowing the marines to be better prepared to clash with the Straw Hats.
- Bonney, on the other hand, has been very boring. I hope things change, but so far she's been used for exagerated reactions, then taken off the story when she could be giving useful insight or doing stuff. I feel her role has just been to make things more difficult for the heroes.
- This chapter makes me think we will start to learn about Kuma soon. It was quite surprising to see him returning to the Red Line. I wonder what's his objective, but since we saw marines tapping into Kamabaka comunications I've been thinking he was spying on the Revolutionaries.
- I really doubt the entire Vegapunk ensemble will be on the ship. Things will keep getting worse, I feel, and many of them may be left behind. I also question if one (or more) of them may be sabotaging things. And I think this saboteur may be none other than... Atlas!
- We also get a new mystery character. I was expecting a certain one for this arc, but this can't be her. The only clue about its identity is the very polite manner of speech (in the japanese original), which rules out characters like Smoker or Weevil.
- And finally, Garp's arrival was quite the surprise. This further reinforces Egghead as the New World's Sabaody. It seems the two that will clash this year will be Blackbeard and Garp. I wouldn't be surprised if Garp gathered an ensemble team of familiar marines (I posted about this supposed team in the Garp thread).
- To cap this thread off: it's funny that I originally thought Kid was going to Hachinosu and Law to Elbaph, but it was (kind of) the other way around. I look forward to see more of Kid, since I feel he's a very undeveloped character.
Anyway, since we are starting 2023, here are my predictions for this year:
- Hancock will be back in the main story
- Egghead ends in a dire situation
- Next arc is NOT Elbaf
- “Garp’s Eleven” (team of sympathetic marines)
- Gear 5’s weaknesses revealed
- Vivi’s whereabouts
- Dragon finally acts