When it comes to flash-forwards, how drastic does a 182 episode jump sound to you? I actually watched ONE PIECE #1 sometime last year (back when this column had a different name) and never caught another episode past that. As daunting as the prospect getting through 64 episodes of FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST seemed, 500 or so episodes of this seemed almost like a Herculean labor. Plus, Godlen's already doing such a great job with his weekly coverage of the manga. Still, this was one of the DVDs I received from Funimation and I’d be remiss not to watch it.
Back then, I got a serious Peter Pan vibe off of Luffy and his adventures. Now, with the largely-expanded cast, it feels more like an agro, male PIPI LONGSTOCKING with the general ambiance of classic American strips like TERRY & THE PIRATES or STEVE CANYON. The intro makes that abundantly clear. Of course, the main character is a rubber man who beats the high holy hell out of the badguy with an absolute barrage of punches, so even if this is cut from the same blanket of whimsy as those other stories I mentioned, it’s still connected to DBZ by the same thread.
Commenting on a show that’s this deep into its own storyline and mythologies is probably a futile effort. I will say it’s interesting to see this kind of fairplay turnabout for cross-cultural exchange, as the "heaven" of this show would definitely be way too touchy for Western kids programing. And I, at last, see who the godly villain is that Foxxfireart’s been talking about all this time - - the one whose name was so grievously changed by Viz.I will say that this show offers an amusing little conversation point in the enduring dialog about change vs. iconic stasis in these kind of stories. At this point, the show is what? 60 hours long? And Luffy is still talking about being king of the pirates like it's some faraway goal?
This episode was titled “Maxim Surfaces! Deathpiea is Activated!” Watch it below and decide for yourself.