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ONE PIECE #585 - - Special Review

"Wachaaaaaaa!" says Chopper

Thankfully, as some of these threads are finally tying together, the episode-to-episode is getting a little easier to follow. Phew!

Having now watched this show over what at least feels like a full season already, I’ll still contend that Oda’s approach to plotting is basically about him throwing a ton of pieces onto a chess board and then figuring out how to arrange them. He just happens to have a superhuman talent for finding spontaneous connections to older material which are clever enough to seem like they’ve always been part of the plan. That’s not a bad thing, certainly - - it’s just undeniably mesmerizing to behold.

Like this whole business about Devil Fruit Eaters’ weakness to water that serves as such a terrifying point of tension in this episode? It’s an inspired detail that underscores every moment of this story with rich dramatic tension - - but it also smells of something that was retroactively devised in just the way I described.

I got such jollies watching Chopper break out the Kung Fu super-moves (the part where he strikes a pose and shouts “Wachaaaa!” being the stand-out). All the cool characters I listed last time are my equal favorites, but any time Tony does something rad, I can’t help feeling like I’ve underappreciated the lil’ guy.

Actually, to bring up the subject of the Straw Hats’ team dynamics again, I’ll be perfectly willing to eat my words if Nami and Robin have had plenty stand-out moments in the past… but I do still find it amusing that the only two women on this crew are the two straight women, essentially. Again, that’s not really a criticism, but it’s still amusing to note that - - conscientious do-rightness and arm multiplication aside - - they seem rather normal on a ship that’s home to a gung-ho rubber man, a rockstar skeleton, a mutating reindeer and other assorted, totally extreme personalities.

Watch this episode, "The Warlord! Trafalgar Law!” 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

Petiewon Feb. 21, 2013 at 7:05 a.m.
The devil fruit user's weakness to water is something we've known about since the first chapter. I'd say it's less about dramatic tension and more just limiting the power of devil fruit users. It means crews can't just be loaded with only devil fruit users, and the use of seastone technology means devil fruit users can be imobilised when they need to be for plot reasons.
 
I also think Oda's less haphazard than you give him credit for. I feel like when he introduces a character he already knows how they're going to play into the overall story. Oda's said he's had the ending all planned out for years. The foreshadowing, ways characters are introduced and how the arcs play out make it seem as if he already knows what he wants to achieve and when. There're a few reveals in this arc that people had actually guessed just from a few key words and symbols in the background that we saw a few hundred chapters ago. Oda obviously doesn't have every chapter for the next 5 years marked out in his head, but when a character or theme is introduced it's most likely because he already knows what it's going to achieve and gives him time to build up to it gradually.
 
The original East Blue crew (Luffy, Zoro, Nami, Usopp and Sanji) were actually fairly normal, even Chopper fit in quite easily. Franky and Brook brought up the craziness factor quite quickly.
Nami and Robin have basically become the long suffering straight men in a group full of exciteable kids. They still have their funny moments, but nothing particuarly crazy. Two of the most serious (and IMO best) arcs actually focussed on Nami and Robin which is where their standout moments come from.
 
  
  Robin's bluntness can be pretty funny too.
FoxxFireArt moderator on Feb. 21, 2013 at 7:51 a.m.

I contend that the weakness to water is the perfect consequence for this series. The ONE PIECE world is easily 90% covered in water, and sea travel is the primary source of transportation in this world. The risk of falling in water is high. More so for a pirate. It's a hell of a lot better power weakness than say kryptonite.

The pacing of the manga moves much smoother. A few years back, the anime moved to a pace of a chapter equals one episode. It's how they avoid doing filler arcs. It means some scenes get drawn out.

@Petiew:

That scene got even funnier later when Sanji tried imagining Robin as part of it.

jj_jacksonon Feb. 21, 2013 at 4:16 p.m.

Its true he might be making these past connections as he goes along but they are so well thought out. He seriously doesnt leave loose ends. If you think oda does just give him some time and you will see he answers whatever youve got to ask.

The sea seems like an appropriate weakness and risk for eating a devil fruit It's basically saying put your life on the line to have this amazing power. The only person I've seen avoid the Sea weakness is Aoikiji but thats pretty appropriate sincce he's made of ice.

YotaruVegetaon Feb. 24, 2013 at 5:07 p.m.

Out of the whole crew, I think Robin seems like the most super straight of the straight men on this show. I don't think she has had a silly moment, to my memory.

If the creators of Lost had come to Oda and said "Hey, how do we wrap this up?" there would've been much less negative fervor over the finale.

The flashbacks to Trafalgar Law remind me just how much I skipped to catch up with the show. I keep promising myself that one day, I WILL go back and watch those.

Near the end of this episode, I was totally cracking up. Just funny, ridiculous stuff. I love the Navy and Smoker's reaction to the nonsense.

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