Creator: Eiichiro Oda
Genre: Adventure, Action, Comedy
Length: 200+ Episodes
+ Excellent continuous storyline
+ Colorful cast of characters
+ Great character development
+/ Length of series for newcomers
Arguably the best anime series to date, One Piece is an incredible journey following Monkey D. Luffy as he aims to become the Pirate King. With its incredible storytelling and a truly unique cast of characters, there is a lot in One Piece to please anime fans of any genre. Do whatever you can to watch the original, uncut version because the English dub does not do the series justice.
5 out of 5 · An Unequivocal Recommendation
One Piece Anime Review
Written by: Raye on 7/12/2006
Set sail on the adventure of a lifetime! Years ago, the most feared pirate in the world, Gol D. Roger, had been executed. Before his death, he announced that he hid a treasure in the most dangerous sea in the world, the Grand Line. The unknown item only known as
"One Piece" is now a possession sought out by those brave enough to venture out in search of it amidst the age of pirates.
Enter Monkey D. Luffy. After accidentally eating a Devil Fruit, his entire body turned into rubber. Armed with his new found powers, Luffy begins his journey to claim the title of Pirate King and uncover the mysterious One Piece. Alongside the fearsome pirate hunter Roronoa Zoro and the cunning, yet beautiful Nami, Luffy must face any and all challenges that stand in his way. From massive sea creatures to other Devil Fruit users, it doesn't look like that Luffy's path will be an easy one.
There are a number of reasons why One Piece is so good; so many that it's difficult to choose where to begin. Adapted from the original serialized manga running in Weekly Shonen Jump, the anime series remains almost one hundred percent faithful. Fillers are kept to a minimum and best of all, there are absolutely no wasteful recap episodes. A few slight edits are made here and there because the anime series is exposed to a much broader audience due to its broadcast time on Sunday nights at 7:30 in Japan, a time when most Japanese families sit down for dinner and watch TV together. For instance, in the anime, it's never explained or depicted how Luffy received the trademark scar under his eye, when those who have read the manga know for a fact that Luffy stabbed himself to prove his bravery to his mentor Red Haired Shanks. Yes, believe it or not, there are censors in Japan. And because the anime trails the most recent chapters of the manga behind so closely, other minor additions are made to extend certain scenes. The extra animation in no way affect the original storyline, so there shouldn't be any reason to complain by even the pickiest of fanboys.
A definite storyline is something One Piece lacks. The series follows Luffy on his quest to become the Pirate King, and that's how it has always been. Because of its length, it's better to imagine that the series is broken down into arcs. The beginning of One Piece serves as an introduction to the main cast of characters. In addition to Luffy, Nami, and Zoro, there is Ussop the sharpshooting liar and Sanji the girl-crazy chef. The five, dubbed the Straw Hat Pirates, act as the main cast until the story moves to the Grand Line.
The characters are probably the best thing about the show. The Straw Hat Pirates are a fun bunch to watch. The interaction between all of them is classic, almost as if they were made to be a crew from the start. What's great is that they all interact with one another. The series doesn't focus on just one person because all mates aboard Luffy's ship are considerably important. So it's not just Luffy who's being spoken to or taking up all the camera time. Rather, each member of the main cast is given ample time to speak with one another, which gives them more of a personality than most characters in other series. As for the villains and side characters, they too are quite memorable considering the length of One Piece. More often than not, the spotlight moves away from the main cast and shines on the other characters. No one character comes off as recycled from prior episodes or other series. Because each one of them serves a purpose in a particular arc of the series, it's nearly impossible to forget who they were by the next episode.
Fighting is not the focus of One Piece, but it plays a large role in the series. Each fight has a background story preceding it, giving off a feeling that there is more on the line than just a battle to see who is the strongest. No battle happens without a reason, so aimless scuffles between the main cast and a bunch of no name baddies never occur. The early bouts in One Piece usually focus around Luffy trying to earn the trust of his future companions. Once the longer battles set in, it may seem rather convenient that the opposing side has a number that come close to rival the number of Straw Hat Pirates, but rest assure that no fight comes off as lackluster. Nearly every fight in One Piece takes place in a different setting, allowing individual members of the main cast to show their stuff. Another great thing is that each one of the Straw Hat Pirates has their own unique fighting style. Luffy has a large arsenal of techniques that use his rubber body, Zoro harnesses a style of three katanas, and Sanji can really do a number with his powerful legs.
If you're wondering where the negative remarks are, there are none. It's almost impossible to find a flaw in One Piece. Everything about the show is so great that I can't find a single opening for criticism. There may be little nitpicks by others concerning the style and quality of the show's animation, but then again, every series has its own unique flavor. Personally, I find that there is absolutely nothing bad to say about One Piece. The neverending storyline keeps on entertaining and never lets down. The characters are home names in Japan and can be recognized by a number of anime fans. If you have yet to catch One Piece, what are you waiting for? You are definitely missing out! One Piece is an anime classic in the making.
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