Well, ain't this some ironic timing? As you might’ve notice, I’m watching ONE PIECE from the front and from the back, as it were, and the last episode I watched (one of the earliest ones) was just nauseatingly precious. Obviously, even if these write-ups somehow happened to be on Oda’s radar (which is more preposterous than Gum Gum fruit abilities, certainly), the episodes in question were completed looooooooooong before I wrote about any of them.
All the same, though, it’s still fun to imagine Oda bristling at my critique and saying, “Oh, you want to get adult, now? Let’s get adult.”
Which is to say that this episode featured a rather shockingly-intense depiction of drug addiction. This is far away from, say, Garfield having a bottomless appetite for lasagna - - this is a bunch of kids going through violent withdrawal symptoms over drug-laced candy that some sicko’s intentionally got them hooked up on.
When I was a kid, basically every cartoon on TV had at least one episode that doubled as an anti-drug PSA. The most spectacular of the bunch, certainly, was which was a mega-crossover on the order you'd only otherwise see in fan fiction or in Patton Oswalt’s viral filibuster. Maybe it’s because the Straw Hats’ colorful crew is so varied that the characters could conceivably have been culled from various other shows, but my pop culture synesthesia was pulling that special up something fierce while watching this.
I don’t know, I’ve got a sense of humor that grows increasingly more morbid with time, but I found much dark amusement in how intensely dramatic the show gets, so fast, whilst still stubbornly making time for the usual chibi and panty raid jokes.
Yeah, yeah… it’s all good and disturbing in the context of this universe. It also plays like wicked, wicked black humor, and so, I totally approve.