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ONE PIECE #574 - - Special Review

The Straw Hats get back to business and it's so... sexy?

Well, now… “fan service” in ONE PIECE?!

Nami’s extended bathing scene probably shouldn’t have been as surprising as it was to me. Her endowments would - - * AHEM * - - stick out even if this world wasn’t mostly populated by flat, Gorey-esque characters. Still, when the main character of your saga is an outrageous man-child who’s maybe a few years overdue for puberty (or a guy who’s seemingly supplanted an endless food appetite for any interest in sex), then even the slightest titillation becomes pretty jarring.

Or perhaps I’ve simply missed the 50-episode-arc where Luffy showed everybody how much of a horndog he really is. That’s kind of a scary scenario to imagine, actually. Less so for the many possibilities of Luffy’s stretching abilities than for that manic look that’s always in his eyes.

Moving one, now…

The show’s finally back to that special kind of creative escalation that I get such a rise out of. Oda’s clearly just making everything up as he goes along, but he’s somehow managing to keep pulling rabbits out of the hat. There’s something sublimely feverish to how the Straw Hats watch one absurdly huge fish get eaten by another absurdly huge fish, then see themselves getting listlessly pulled to their doom by the very sight they’re so awed by… and then for them to be saved from all these problems with an impromptu ballad. It’s the same sort of delightful improv you get when a kid's playing out a story with his action figures.

Then again, maybe there isn’t actually improvisational about this. The successive flashbacks at the end (which might as well have footnotes in their lower-thirds, if I could suggest) make it clear that all these hysterics actually do fit into some meticulously-woven latticework. And maybe that's the paradox which has made ONE PIECE such a phenom. It doesn't ever take itself that seriously but, damn, if it doesn't take its own continuity seriously.

Watch this episode, "To the New World! Heading for the Ultimate Sea!” here and decide for yourself, then read my comments about the previous episode here.

Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk

Destinyheroknighton Nov. 29, 2012 at 11:30 a.m.

You be amaze on how much Oda plan things out LOL!

Also I was surprise at that fish that look like mayonnaise is a real fish

Username_Undefined is online on Nov. 29, 2012 at 12:42 p.m.

I remember when this chapter came out. The thing that got most people wasn't Nami's bath scene, but the fact that she let Chopper be there with her. Yes, technically he's a reindeer, but he still a boy and part human thanks to his Devil Fruit.

I was bummed when the Strawhats got back to the surface. In the manga, they came up in a literal ocean of flames, at least in the background.

FoxxFireArt moderator on Nov. 29, 2012 at 12:47 p.m.

I liked the shower scene, but ONE PIECE probably has some of the lowest amount of fan service when compared to NARUTO or BLEACH. Also, the scene was only extended for the anime. The manga version was very brief. Unlike many other anime, Nami isn't a teen girl. By this time she's twenty years-old.

If you want to put ONE PIECE up against nearly any comic from Marvel or DC in the fan service content. Your average issue of CATWOMAN will probably have more fan service than the entire run of ONE PIECE.

Luffy shares a lot of similarities to Goku. Goku was such a pure hearted guy. You have to wonder how he had two kids. As a kid, Goku thought marriage was a kind of meal. Luffy twice came face to face with a topless Boa Hancock and didn't even flinch.

Not the fish!!
Not the fish!!

Dude, never question Oda on what he does with his continuity. He'll surprise you every time. Weird things that seem random could wind up coming right back with meaning. Ultimately, this is all just a fun adventure. I loved their reaction to being told to get rid of the fish they caught.

Sadly, some fillers are up ahead, but these are going to tie into the movie coming out next month.

Lurkeroon Nov. 29, 2012 at 3:26 p.m.

Fanservice in One Piece is weird. It doesn't seem like Oda is intentionally trying to elicit a sexual response, but the way he draws some females is clearly indicative of well endowed and curvy frames. Boa, Nami, and Robin being prime examples. In Fairy Tail, the other One Piece, the same seems to be true.

I think that Oda did some Deathnote style planning when he started One Piece over a decade ago. Even though I no longer watch on a regular basis there were plenty of callbacks to the beginning of the series and characters that were not seen for hundreds of episodes. Although, Kubo does the same thing with Bleach and I think the opposite with him so I dunno.

FoxxFireArt moderator on Nov. 29, 2012 at 4:58 p.m.

@Username_Undefined:

Oda was asked abut Chopper in the shower. He explained that despite eating the Human-Human fruit that he's still an animal at heart and has zero sexual or romantic interest in humans.

@Lurkero:

Fan service is far more played up in the anime than the manga.

I've always been impressed how Oda has managed to stay away from relationship shipping in the series. With NARUTO you have the whole Hinata>Naruto>Sakura>Sasuke and BLEACH has Ichigo>Orihime>Rukia, and there are often scenes behind them. Sanji may flaunt after Robin and Nami, but he does the same to every woman.

You're hard pressed to find any real shipping moments between the main cast in ONE PIECE.

Jinbeifan1on Nov. 29, 2012 at 8:01 p.m.

@FoxxFireArt said:

@Username_Undefined:

Oda was asked abut Chopper in the shower. He explained that despite eating the Human-Human fruit that he's still an animal at heart and has zero sexual or romantic interest in humans.

@Lurkero:

Fan service is far more played up in the anime than the manga.

I've always been impressed how Oda has managed to stay away from relationship shipping in the series. With NARUTO you have the whole Hinata>Naruto>Sakura>Sasuke and BLEACH has Ichigo>Orihime>Rukia, and there are often scenes behind them. Sanji may flaunt after Robin and Nami, but he does the same to every woman.

You're hard pressed to find any real shipping moments between the main cast in ONE PIECE.

I believe I might have said this before, but the lack of romantic situations is a big part of why the . Sure it was cool with Boa Hancock, but that was temporary and Luffy didnt even notice until two years later, and ended up rejecting her xD romantic situations tend to make a story drift away from the main plot, and fanservice, which is not so much emplanted in the manga, can also steer away fans

YotaruVegetaon Dec. 2, 2012 at 12:12 p.m.

I'd be surprised if Luffy every showed any interest in women at all. I don't even know what Luffy's ideal woman is. I guess she would have to be between two slices of bread.

Yeah, that fanservice. Like fanservice, it was completely unnecessary, but even moreso in One Piece. I did find it funny that Chopper doesn't give a shit about human female nudity; that's a nice touch. I guess the human-human fruit didn't have that sort of effect on him.

The humor I did appreciate was Sanji's roll call joke. That's what I associate more with the humor of One Piece. One Piece has lasted through a lot of periods in anime fandom-- sort of like the evolution of The Simpsons as time has gone on-- and I guess this type of fanservice would creep in. I just prefer when guys would drool over women on the show simply because they're attractive-- not because they caught them fully nude.

YotaruVegetaon Dec. 2, 2012 at 12:13 p.m.

@Username_Undefined: Chopper seems like he'd rather be with a cloud.

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