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ONE PIECE #599 - - Special Review

Even the kids are getting anxious about the pacing!

I’ll be honest… I’m reaching another point of fatigue with “Punk Hazard.” Perhaps this episode was simply below the usual quality level, but I’m starting to get a better understanding of how “off-seasons” in TV broadcasting are needed to give the audience a break as much as the crew.

I’ve lost track of the episode number I started with, but it’s safe to guess that I’ve been following this show for around 26 episodes at this point. That would be the length of a whole season in a regular show, but we all know that concept’s irrelevant to ONE PIECE. This 15 ‘season’ has been running continuously for over a year and half, and I feel like the crew would be running it daily if they could.

Joker’s name has no relevancy to me, and neither does Don Quixote Doflamingo’s… so the successive chain reaction of shocking reveals that takes up the majority of this episode held no resonance for me. I understand that this wasn’t ‘filler’ in the way that fans usually define it, but it still felt rather padded in my eyes. A quarter of the episode’s devoted to this silly prelude with the G-5 bullies that runs on a lot longer than it should. Another big chunk is devoted to the children going through another fit of violent drug withdrawal that’d be shocking... if it weren’t the third time we’ve seen them freak out on screen. We get the point, now!

The only piece of new information that seemed relevant (to me, anyway. Always about me) was the reveal of these kids’ parents and their missing children photos. Then again, the sympathy points are kind-of incremental, now. You can see that these kids have got families worrying about them... but weren't you already feeling sympathetic already?

I don’t know how much longer I want to stick with this. Certainly, I want to see Luffy deal out some fiery comeuppance on this Caesar Clown creep. However, if we’re honestly only halfway through this arc, I don’t know if I’m willing to ‘power through’ another 26 episodes to see that payback.

Watch this episode, "Shocking! The True Identity of the Mystery Man Vergo!” here and decide for yourself, then read my comments about the previous episode here.

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Lurkeroon June 13, 2013 at 6:15 p.m.

I think One Piece episodes are paced slowly because it allows the anime to stay behind the manga much easier. Over 5 minutes of the episodes are taken up by recaps and the intro. Add in the regular anime tropes to extend time (e.g. long pans) and you can get bored really fast.

I was fatigued on One Piece multiple times and decided instead to watch an episode every now and then rather than keep up with the series.

I would actually like it if anime took season breaks and had better pacing as a result.

Petiewon June 14, 2013 at 1:32 a.m.

Yep, the pacing in the anime is terrible. They have to stretch out the 20 minute episode to cover what can be read in 5 minutes so the series really suffers.

To be honest One Piece has been a lot weaker since the timeskip. Fishman Island was a dull arc, and I felt Punk Hazard dragged on too long, and the drama with the kids was uninteresting. It's kind of an unfortunate point to jump in at. You start with some of the weakest arcs, and you don't even get the added bonus of understanding and enjoying all of the best parts since the call backs mean nothing.

The Doflamingo reveal was a pretty big thing. He first appeared around 450 episodes ago and has slowly established himself as one of the biggest scumbags in the OP world. People have been waiting for his arc for years now.

FoxxFireArt moderator on June 17, 2013 at 2:56 a.m.

Yes, the pacing of the ONE PIECE anime can be pretty odd, but I guess I've gotten used to it. You have to make a choice, do you want extended episodes of canon material, or tighter episodes and filler arcs of non-canon episodes. I prefer the canon material. One of the weaker parts of NARUTO and BLEACH are the constant fillers that even break in the middle of canon arcs.

I would agree that the scene of the parents is a bit superfluous. However, that scene was more about just how well Vergo plays his role as a double agent.

Going by the episode titles, the counter attack, which begins the third and final act, should begin on Ep. 603.

I'm actually rather astounded that you didn't see any comparisons between the Joker of ONE PIECE and say another "Clown Prince of Crime". That was the first thing that popped into my mind when I saw this reveal in the manga. It really started to sink in when I remembered how they both dress outlandishly and have these perpetual, creepy grins. However, I would be more afraid of Doflamingo. We've seen him throughout much of the series in spots, and he's one wicked dude.

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A teenage boy named Monkey D. Luffy goes on a journey to find the fabled One Piece and become Pirate King, building a crew of merry mischief-makers as he goes.

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