Netflix's One Piece: What Happens To Axe-Hand Morgan?

"One Piece" tends to surprise fans by bringing a long-forgotten character into the story's latest arc, like Buggy's reintroduction in Impel Down, hundreds of episodes after his last appearance in Loguetown. However, characters like Axe-Hand Morgan are sometimes never seen again once their stories get wrapped up, leading fans to wonder what happened to the former Marine captain who served as an early challenge in Luffy's journey. 

Unfortunately for Morgan, his story didn't necessarily end on a good note. Following the "Romance Dawn" arc, in "Diary of Koby-Meppo," a mini-arc following Koby and Helmeppo's Marine training, "One Piece" reveals that the Navy planned to court-martial Morgan, stripping him of his Captain ranking and likely continuing his incarceration. However, he managed to escape after being transferred to Vice Admiral Monkey D. Garp's ship, taking advantage of Garp's random sleeping patterns to hop aboard a lifeboat. 

During his escape, Morgan took Helmeppo hostage, forcing his son onto his lifeboat. However, Helmeppo no longer felt burdened by his father, disowning him for his criminal actions, leaving him on the lifeboat, and swimming back to Garp's Marine vessel. The last time we see Morgan, he's napping on his boat as it floats the seas, unknowingly passing Jango, who's doing the same thing, leaving his current whereabouts unknown.

Netflix's One Piece switches up Axe-Hand Morgan's fate

While Netflix's live-action "One Piece" remains relatively faithful to Eiichiro Oda's legendary manga, it took some creative liberties with Axe-Hand Morgan's (Langley Kirkwood), simplifying the end of his story compared to the source material.

In Episode 2, "The Man in the Straw Hat," Vice Admiral Garp (Vincent Regan) arrests Morgan, deducing that the Captain lied to him about Luffy's (Iñaki Godoy) actions in the Marine base. Garp has Morgan tied to the prisoner post in front of his men, and while we don't see him again in the adaptation, it's safe to assume Morgan remains in Marine custody for the rest of the series. Technically, the live-action Morgan has a similar open-ended conclusion to his manga counterpart, but instead of leaving him out in the world, the Netflix show likely locked him in a cell.

While creative liberties are necessary when adapting a story like "One Piece," the live-action Axe-Hand Morgan differs from his manga counterpart in more ways than just his ending. In the source material, the Marine captain is incredibly violent, never hesitating to brutally beat his subordinates for the slightest mistakes. However, Netflix toned down this side of Morgan for its adaptation, making him a more charismatic character while still showing he's quick to jump to violence when necessary. While these changes make him less antagonistic than his manga counterpart, they aren't necessarily bad, as Morgan says some pretty awful things in the source material.