When third party’s fight who should we root for?
In a series the protagonists should always win the big fights, to push the story forward. But what about secondary characters fighting for their own purposes who should we root for? In the case of One Piece the example that sticks out at me is the fight between Ace and Blackbeard. Their fight had nothing to do with the Strawhats, but the author still chose to show the fight. Now clearly Ace is Luffy’s brother and from the point of view of the story Blackbeard did kill a crewmate and Ace was going to avenge his crewmate. But in the fight I wanted Blackbeard to win, now it might but because I never really liked Ace as a character or because I did like Blackbeard. But it got me thinking we root for the protagonists of the story because we get to know them as the story goes on whether it’s the character’s personally, their struggle, past, or other things we can relate too, but for secondary characters we don’t get that too the same degree so during the Ace and Blackbeard fight is it personal preference? At the end of the fight the author stated that (in the VIZ media copy) “the duel at Banaro Island in the Grand Line. This battle between pirates would later be identified as the trigger for the major events that were to follow.” Going back to the point of pushing the story forward Blackbeard was predetermined to win so that he could be the main antagonist. But let’s now talk about another fight. Shanks vs Mihawk. Clearly their fight would be in a flashback and not in the current timeline so not to affect the Strawhats and since we know both party’s survived if we see the fight who do we root to win? Both Shanks and Mihawk have connections later the Strawhats but if we understand the timeline correctly their fight happened before Shanks met Luffy and Mihawk met Zoro. So the story won’t be affected. So in that fight how do we decide?