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Point Park Globe

Point Park University's Student-Run Newspaper

Point Park Globe

Point Park University's Student-Run Newspaper

Point Park Globe

Live action “One Piece” is satisfying for fans old and new


Instead of spending my time more wisely in 2020, I decided to begin watching  “One Piece,” an anime where the main protagonist is on a long journey to become the king of the pirates. When I started watching the show on Netflix, which only had a couple hundred episodes, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Now I can either proudly or embarrassingly say that I am around 1010 episodes in.


I find it fitting that the adaptation is on Netflix, where I began my journey watching my favorite show of all time. When I first saw the trailer for the adaptation on my dad’s computer, I told him that it was probably going to be bad like every other live action adaptation out there. However, when I feasted my eyes on the first episode showcasing the actor of Gold D Roger getting slain by the navy, I couldn’t help but become giddy. 


The sets are fantastic, the content is fantastic, even the flashbacks are fantastic. If there is one thing the live action series does better than the anime, it is how seamless the flashbacks are placed in the story. Since there was a lot of content to trim from the animated show, the adaptation had the opportunity to use the flashbacks in just the right moments. Any fan who has seen the anime knows just how overused flashbacks can be, and seeing them used in clever ways rather than as filler was refreshing.


It’s been so long since I’ve seen the beginning of the show but I’m certain they changed a lot of content. The characters and themes are far more mature in the live action series and a character who lives after a fatal injury in the anime dies. One thing I didn’t enjoy so much was the voice of Luffy’s actor.  It sounded normal, but that was the problem. None of the characters were quite as annoying as their anime counterparts, and Buggy the Clown was kind of scary. I really enjoyed the Buggy live action episode compared to what they show in the anime. He seemed threatening instead of the annoying and fuddy-duddy pirate that he is usually portrayed as . 


The pace of the series is fast and some content changes will keep a fan on the edge of their seat. Just because there is such a high concentration of filler in the show, watching something where each moment had importance to the story was interesting. Although, it made me sad to know that if someone was seeing this, they would only see a summary of the plot rather than the beautiful, excruciatingly long show that I know. For someone who has been wanting to get addicted to “One Piece” without the commitment, I 100% recommend the live action series. 


If anything, a fan can tell that the budget for the show was quite high. The massive ship sets, the action, everything was correct down to a T. I think for an anime that has been running since 1999, if Netflix did disappoint with the adaptation, they would have never heard the end of it. The animation of Luffy’s stretching ability isn’t too weird either and the crew uses clever camera angles to sometimes make it look like he’s stretching out when he’s not. 


One of the first things I looked at was if the actors were doing their own stunts. When Zoro was introduced and it was clear that it was him fighting; it made the show that much more realistic. Honestly the show was really violent, and compared to the beginning of the anime where these events take place, there are far more serious themes to appeal to a more adult audience.


I found it interesting that they included the scene where Luffy cuts his eye to create a scar. Simply because the anime decided to absolve this part. I think the choice of this contributed to the whole Idea that this series is far more serious and dramatic than normal. It honestly reminded me of a drama show that you could watch on television.

Overall, I thought I wasn’t going to like the adaptation but it ended up fulfilling my high expectations. To recap, it’s just a lot less silly than the show and it changes a lot of the plot points and character personalities to make it that way. 

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