I've never been the slightest bit shy about my irritation with Baby 5's codependency issues. There just seemed to be no end to the abuse she would accept. I thought her personality might at least be good for a couple of laughs after reading last week's chapter. However, imagine my surprise at the turn we get here.
In almost no time at all, Oda gives a pretty solid explanation for her self destructive behavior. Not only was she neglected and abandoned by her own mother for nothing more than being a child who couldn't do much, but she found herself in an environment filled with people who took advantage of her desire to help others and only encouraged it.
For as honorable a guy as he has shown himself to be. Remember that Sai also has some of his own personality issues. Back in the beginning of this arc, he flipped out on Luffy just for appreciating his help during a misunderstanding with the tournament officials. These two quirky lovebirds may have been made for one another.
It wouldn't feel right to only focus on Baby 5 and Sai. Lao G adds plenty to this chapter in the way of humor by his unique martial arcs. Hey, if we can have Drunken and Crane Kung-Fu, why not Geriatric-Style? Can you just imagine how many years that takes to master?
I have no problem with Baby 5 finding love and real acceptance with Sai. I hope only the best for her. I just wish she had found self worth in herself before she formed a real relationship with anyone. Although, if she's going to end up hitched to anyone, I'd rather it be someone who wants to protect her and improve.
I believe the Japanese publication of this chapter included the results of the Japanese character popularity poll. I was disappointed to see it wasn't included in the English edition.
It just never stops amazing me how Oda can make side-characters feel just about as entertaining as the primary cast? It's not as if I'm saying I'd want entire arcs dedicated to these people, but it doesn't bother me in the slightest with how much screen time they're getting in this arc. Part of that is clearly the creator's experience in character creation and writing put on full display. In fact, I'd enjoy checking up on Sai and Baby 5 from time to time in the future.
ONE PIECE will be on a one week break, so enjoy the holidays.
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