Ok this just suddenly came to my mind while I was typing a reply to some other blog post. So, a Shichibukai is first and foremost a pirate right? But it seems that quite a number of the old Shichibukais revealed to us in the past don't actually have a functioning crew. Crocodile, Mihawk and Kuma are examples that come to mind.
With Crocodile, I don't know what happened to his crew, but maybe he lost them like how Moriah did. Baroque works was an organisation he secretly set up, but do you think he actually had an active crew back when he was still an active Shichibukai?
Mihawk seemed like a complete lone ranger, but then again, he could have a crew that just hasn't been revealed to us yet. I mean, prior to this arc, Doffy's crew hadn't been hinted even the slightest. If Mihawk is fully solo, then the term pirate is extremely loose indeed. As long as you travel around and work against the government, it seems that's enough for you to be a pirate. But I don't think we've been introduced to any solo pirates really, and you'd expect that for a pirate to gain enough infamy to become a shichibukai, they'd need a crew to be able to do that. Maybe Mihawk was just a lone traveller that went around defeating other swordsmen that got offered simply based on his title as the world's greatest swordsman.
Kuma is even more unique. I'm thinking the WG might not be aware of his ex revolutionary status, but even if they weren't, Ivankov kinda screamed it for everyone to hear during the WB war. I'm wondering if Kuma spent some time as an active pirate with a crew that allowed himself to gain enough infamy to be instated as a shichibukai. Or perhaps, it was entirely because of his secret yet uknown pacifista experiment deal with Vegapunk.
So, opinions? Do you think they have a crew? Or had a crew that got disbanded? Or have a crew that just wasn't shown to us?