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Episode #22 -- Special Review. Too serious?

Putting this next to the latest episodes of NARUTO SHIPPUDEN, you’d have to conclude that most bright and whimsical shonen shows are on an inevitable slide to de-saturated dourness that usually involves giant, monolithic beasts. In NARUTO, it was colossal spirits/demons with varying numbers of tails. Here, it’s dragons who might be made of fire or stone.

When FAIRY TAIL started, fans generally seemed to dismiss it as a warmed-over ONE PIECE. To be honest, Salamander always struck me as what you'd get if somebody just took the art template of Luffy, died the hair pink and swapped the clothes out. The glaring issue now, I guess, is that ONE PIECE-like characters look incredibly ill-suited to a SHIPPUDEN make-over.

I’ve always thought that throwing ‘grimdark’ around as a pejorative for adventure serials is an ill-founded complaint. People respond to higher stakes and graver threats in their comics. That's just natural growth. The difference here is that, even when it touches upon borderline-inappropriate ‘issues’ like drug abuse, ONE PIECE always maintains its color and sense of manic creativity - - even when those elements are almost jarringly at odds.

In this sample of FAIRY TAIL, it’s especially telling that the intro features the band of heroes marching through the rain and shadows, trying their damnedest to look badass, and trying too hard at it. No getting around this: it really seems like the crew just copied the appearances of other, more successful shows, without understanding the meaning underneath what they saw.

I'm all for a series growing up. But, I don't know -- it's hard to watch talking cats and a band of Fairy Tails expecting to be taken this seriously.

Watch "Life Time!" and decide for yourself.

Marshal Victoryon Sept. 4, 2014 at 2:56 p.m.

That episode is part of a time paradox arc. So death means little long term. But comparing Fairy Tail to ONE PIECE is for me. Sure they are shonen but thats about it. Style an story of the two are very different in my mind.

Could kinda see Salamander an Luffy comparison but again their goals are different. Sure they are the main characters of a large cast shonen, an neither is very bright over all. Think the not bright aspect bleeds over more than them being the same.

Destinyheroknighton Sept. 4, 2014 at 3:07 p.m.

Hmm, maybe that why I keep falling out of Fairy Tail. It have Shippuden in it :)

Well, Tom you think this grimdark, wait for the next Arc LOL!

takashichea moderator is online on Sept. 4, 2014 at 3:15 p.m.


This reminds me of the old days. Remember that thread you made, I prefer One Piece over Fairy Tail.

katmicon Sept. 5, 2014 at 1:43 a.m.

From the point of view of someone that hasn't read fairy tail, i can see why they would think that one piece and fairy tail are the same; but watching/reading it, they couldn't be more different. Though i agree that Natsu is a Luffy copy.

The reason these events in the manga irritated me so much wasn't because of Gray's return but the way it approached the entire situation. I would be happy if fairy tail stuck to its light and fluffy side; however it keeps creating an atmosphere so dark as to make it seem like its going to go down some dark and violent paths.

If it didn't keep confusing me about its tone, it wouldn't irritate me so much.

takashichea moderator is online on Sept. 5, 2014 at 7:56 p.m.

One Piece and Dragon Ball Z were major sources of inspiration. A lot of folks argued Fairy Tail is a big rip off of One Piece. It's inspired. If you want rip offs, look at Fairy Tail and Buster Keel Similarities and Differences.

YotaruVegetaon Sept. 6, 2014 at 7:28 a.m.

One Piece fans would say that Fairy Tail is biting off of One Piece. Now, people who were never into One Piece for whatever reason prefer FT over OP.

I don't keep up with FT, but I liked it. I don't care what comparisons are/aren't there. I just want to enjoy what's different about it.

takashichea moderator is online on Sept. 6, 2014 at 12:43 p.m.


I do that too. It's natural to compare just like the Sailor Moon Crystal vs Sailor Moon. I don't let it put me down.

It's natural for folks to prefer an anime they watched first. I use Fairy Tail, Magi, and other new Shonen shows as breather from the HST shows.

YotaruVegetaon Sept. 7, 2014 at 7:15 a.m.

@takashichea: HST?

takashichea moderator is online on Sept. 7, 2014 at 2:24 p.m.

@YotaruVegeta said:

@takashichea: HST?

HST stands for Holy Shonen Trinity - The big three Shonen shows, One Piece, Naruto, and Bleach.

zaldaron Sept. 7, 2014 at 5:51 p.m.

The overall non serious nature of one piece (especially in the American version with its overly childish opening) and the jarring nature of the serious parts of it are the reason the show never worked for me. There is also the fact that it is crazy crazy long.

YotaruVegetaon Sept. 8, 2014 at 7:18 a.m.

@takashichea: Ah.

@zaldar: We are way way past the One Piece rap. 4Kids paid for that crime. Also, I think that OP knows how to balance serious and silly way better than some other shows. Hellsing, for instance, will have horrific things happening, then a character will go chibi in that same scene. OP tends to be funny during down time, and serious when the stakes are high.

dill77on Sept. 10, 2014 at 10:37 p.m.

The Fairy tale girls are fap-able even if their all basically

the same girl with different hair. Oda

just can’t seem to do anatomy in a viable or even aesthetically pleasing way.

YotaruVegetaon Sept. 11, 2014 at 8:01 a.m.

@dill77: Thank you for sharing your masturbatory practices.

Dig Deeper into Fairy Tail

Fairy Tail is a shōnen manga series which follows the members of the wizards' guild "Fairy Tail" on various adventures. Fairy Tail began as a manga series and has been adapted into an ongoing anime series, several OVAs and an anime film.

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