As far as secondary characters in One Piece go, Dracule Mihawk is not only one of the strongest ones, but he is also one of the most interesting ones as well. He is the best and most skilled swordsman in the series and a character seemingly allied with many of the villains (he was a Warlord of the Sea…), but is he a villain himself? This article will focus on that issue and tell you whether or not Dracule Mihawk is a villain in the series.
Dracule Mihawk cannot be considered a villain in the series. He is more of a maverick antihero type of character, someone who is a lone wolf with his own goals in mind, but these goals are not villainous, and they are not aligned with those of the true villains of the series, the World Government. He might not always agree with his friends (Shanks) or allies (Zoro, Buggy, Crocodile), but he is not a villain, which has been proven on more than one occasion in the story. He cannot be considered a hero either, but he is definitely not among the villains in One Piece, that much we can be sure of.
The rest of this article will focus solely on the character of Dracule Mihawk in One Piece, as we bring you everything you need to know about him and his actions that will help you understand why he is not a villain in the series. We are going to tell you some information about the history of the character, as well as his role in the whole story. This means that numerous spoilers will be present here, so if you’re not acquainted with the whole story, be careful how you approach it.
Dracule Mihawk is a lone wolf, but he is not a villain
Dracule Mihawk is definitely a secondary character in One Piece, and he hasn’t appeared much in the series. However, he is undoubtedly a relevant character, not just because his story is closely tied to Zoro’s story, but because he is a formidable character and a legend in the world of One Piece.
But, unlike Shanks, whose allegiance is quite clear, Mihawk’s actions cannot be so clearly interpreted, so people keep wondering whether he is a villain in the series. We are now going to introduce his personality to you to see what kind of a person he is, after which we will tell you about his role in the series.
Mihawk is a very serious person, so much so that he rarely smiles. He also shows himself imperturbable and emotionless, as demonstrated when, unlike all the others present, he is not surprised by the kinship between Luffy and Dragon or when he remains impassive after seeing Jaws block his blow aimed at Whitebeard. He has a great sense of honor, a trait peculiar to few pirates. Furthermore, he has a great opinion of his own abilities, to the point of claiming that he is tired of facing fighters who are not at his level in the slightest.
However, he knows how to recognize a talented person when he meets her, so much so that he expresses the desire to see Zoro join him after personally witnessing his great willpower and allowing him to become his pupil.
He is also aware of Luffy’s ability to surround himself with talented people due to his charisma and regards this ability as the most powerful of all. Despite being a member of the Seven Warlords of the Sea, Mihawk used to attack other pirates only when he felt like it, so much so that Zeff suspected that behind the perseverance that led him to destroy all the ships of the men of the Creek, there was only the fact that those men had disturbed his nap.
As evidence, Mihawk reveals that he only reached the East Blue to pass the time. Mihawk uses his immense skill as a measure to evaluate that of the others: he tries to hit Whitebeard with a very powerful blow only to understand what the gap between the two is, and he also attacks Luffy only to satisfy the curiosity to see if fate would have helped the boy or not. While he appears to have no friends, Mihawk greatly respects the people he enjoys fighting and those who survive.
He has a discreet sense of hospitality, to the point of tolerating the presence of Perona and Zoro for two years in his castle. He also informed the latter of his captain’s fate and gave him a boat in which he could sail if he wished.
When the Seven Warlords of the Sea are disbanded, and Mihawk becomes a wanted man again, he claims to shudder as he hasn’t in a long time faced with the ships that have come to capture him. However, following the establishment of the Cross Guild, he states that he is not interested in the title of emperor and that, on the contrary, he only wishes to live in peace.
So, as you can see, Dracule Mihawk is a maverick type of character, a lone wolf, to be more precise. He is definitely not a hero, that much we can confirm, but there is really not enough material for us to call him a villain, either. Okay, sure, he attacked pirates, and he didn’t really help the heroes directly; he also cut down Zoro and initially refused to train him during the time skip, but there is so much more to him than simply that.
While cutting down Zoro, he praised and motivated him to improve, and he ultimately agreed to teach him during the time skip. He is also great friends with Shanks, which speaks for itself, as Shanks isn’t really friends with just anyone, so if Shanks has approved of him, then it means that he is definitely not a bad guy, despite his actions.
On top of that, Mihawk has never really aligned himself with the World Government, who are the true villains of the series. Sure, as a Warlord of the Sea, he had a relationship with the World Government, but he was never a G-man, so to speak, and he never really was loyal to them. This is why he immediately became a wanted man once again when the Warlords were disbanded.
In the end, Mihawk simply does his own thing. He is a guy who likes his own peace and quiet, a guy who… wants to be his own person and does not want to have to answer to anyone, really. And that is what he is doing, what he keeps doing in the series, and all of his actions are directed towards achieving the best possible solution for himself. In that aspect, he cannot be called a villain, but he is also not a hero – in the end, he is simply (and that is more than enough) Dracule Mihawk.