Sunday, June 21, 2009

One Piece Season 1 Third & Fourth Voyage Impression

It’s amazing where some devil fruit power and determination will get an up and coming pirate. Just ask Luffy as he continues to assemble his crew and take on some of the most well established pirates this side of the Grand Line. In volume 3 of One Piece from FUNimation Luffy begins his fight with Arlong while in volume 4 of One Piece season one comes to a close with a visit to birthplace of one very famous, dead, pirate king. All aboard (and other pirate puns) for some great anime action.

One Piece Season 1: Third Voyage
The fight with Don Krieg isn’t going so well but as always a new soon-to-be crewmember saves the day. This time it’s Sanji who steps up and keeps Luffy from drowning. A revived Luffy then continues to pound on Krieg, and of course wins, but choices must now be made. During the fight Nami fled with the Going Merry and all the treasure it contains. She’s always said she was not a pirate and it seems she’s proving that. The crew heads off in pursuit, now with Sanji as a cook in search of his own dreams. The destination, Cocoyashi village, Nami’s hometown. Seems Nami is a member of the Arlong pirates, a ruthless group of fishmen who rule the village and are responsible for a few losses in Nami’s life. Her past, reason for being a thief, is soon revealed and yet another fight begins. Zoro, not fully healed, takes on Hatchan the Octopus while the Navy also gets involved and shows their dirty side. The fishmen are legendary in their skill and power, but can they match-up against the Straw Hat Pirates? Time to find out, and to see what happens when someone makes Nami cry.

The animation in both volumes is good for a long running series and reflective of the source manga. These characters are not meant to be very detailed, but their clothing, ships and environments are so unique and well designed that the simple animation works. It’s a great series to watch as there is no log in animation quality. The voice work in both volumes also continues to shine thanks to the new cast for this uncut version of One Piece, a godsend that we can’t thank FUNimation for enough. The story in this third collection wraps up the first major encounter for Luffy as a captain. Buggy does not count; he was still pretty solo with just Zoro. Learning about Nami and her background shows another layer to Luffy in that he does not care, all he cares about is his navigator and helping her. This fight is also a new level as it’s a larger crew encounter against non-human foes that are a step up from Krieg and Buggy. Top it off with the navy now taking notice and Luffy is on his way … where, that’s to be determined.

One Piece Season 1: Fourth Voyage
The fight continues and Luffy is still trapped. Both Usopp and Sanji get involved. Eventually Luffy is saved … drowning again and he really steps up in pounding Arlong and destroying his complex in the process. Every member of the crew must make choices, realize more about themselves and grow, trust in their captain even more. Eventually, the village saved, Arlong defeated, Nami agrees to leave Cocoyashi village and join the crew. The crew sets off for the doorway to the Grand Line, Logue Town. The famed home and execution place of Gold Roger holds its own dangers for Luffy as he must deal with a tough as nails naval officer, Smoker, who has his own devil fruit powers. Some old foes are also on Straw hats tail as Buggy has managed to pull himself back together and find a new lady to fight with. Logue Town is known as the Town of the Beginning and the End and as Luffy explores the area he seems to follow a path Rogers himself too, even to the execution platform. Zoro has an encounter with a Sergeant Major in the navy while obtained some new swords and Usopp encounters the bounty hunger Daddy the Parent only to learn about his own father. Sanji takes on a cooking challenge and we catch-up with Red Haired Shanks as Hawk Eye delivers news of Luffy’s bounty and growth. A new road lays ahead, one to the Grand Line but first the Straw Hat Pirates must pass the challenges of Logue town.

Wow, tons of action here as the fight with Arlong finishes and what’s in store in Logue town is just tasty. Learning more about Gold Rogers and seeing how Luffy leaves an impression on Smoker and others, it just sets the stage for the grand adventure that is to come. Seeing Red Haired Shanks again as well as the mysterious dragon (who?) just leaves viewers wanting more. This is the end of the first season of One Piece and all the adventures to this point were just appetizers for what’s to come.

Overall these are great additions to any anime collection as One Piece is a rare beast of an anime that mixes great style, action and humor into bite size collectible chunks. I for one cannot wait till season 2 begins, not bad for a series that was once a joke here in the states. Funny what a little re-dub can do.

1 comment:

  1. One piece is my favorite tv show. The show is about a seventeen year old boy named Monkey D. Luffy who has his aims set on becoming the Pirate King by getting the treasure called One Piece.Luffy then hands the three swords to Zoro in exchange for Zoro joining his crew. Luffy and Morgan engage in battle. I have watched and One piece Download few episodes from