What They Say:
Don Chin Jao and Elizabello successfully break Pica’s giant arm but the rock giant is unfazed and starts throwing even more destructive punches at Luffy and his band of unwanted collaborators! Meanwhile, Navy Admiral Fujitora moves into action, summoning all the Navy soldiers on the island!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Though the series for this part of the arc has mostly been dealing with the fallout of events and refocusing our groups into different configurations and positions, it’s been fun watching some of the smaller moments and encounters as it moves along. The addition of Pica as a looming threat that stands tall over the city caught in Doflamingo’s birdcage ability works well, though it has the added benefit for Luffy in that it helps to rally a lot of people to his side in a way because of the scale of what’s being faced and how indiscriminate the attacks are. Giving that some attention and moving along there gives the show plenty of forward momentum to work with, especially since Luffy’s intent on stopping the destruction of the island and its people as his current primary goal, which surprises the heck out of Law, considering what he thought the real goal was. And it really still is, but Luffy’s your classic good guy in this sense.
That momentum is in full display here as various groups are moving right along, aligning themselves with Luffy for different reasons as well, and that’s making things complicated for some. But in general, it’s building a kind of unified front where instead of just acceding to Doflamingo’s whims, more and more are joining the fight against him. This makes for some good material throughout the first half with small, scattered fights as it comes together, but it also gets bigger along the way as they have to face Pica. Pica, for his part, provides a great view of the city from his point of view and as he hunts for Luffy, it definitely makes for some interesting visual design. Amusingly, the reason he can’t see Luffy after a bit is because he and others are basically riding the bull up Pica’s arm so they can get closer to his head. That’s both shocking and hilarious for those watching on because it’s completely not what they expected him to do. Naturally, when Pica realizes it, things get even crazier.
While that plays out, there’s a lot of other smaller movements mixed in along the way, including Fujitora’s subdued surprise at the way things have turned out as he plans his next move with the Navy men that are near him. We do get more time with others that are making progress as well with Usopp, Robin and Rebecca coping with the people that are after them and their star bounties, which makes for a nice catch-up period to see how they’re dealing with the rabble. There’s not a lot of really exciting moments, but seeing Robin defend and protect Rebecca works nicely and it helps to bind them together as a group as they try to make their escape for the moment. But the real focus of the episode is all on Pica and the attempts go after him, which results in our first view of the man within the stone that’s been controlling it. It’s a pretty good bit overall, though it’s still hard getting used to his voice – especially for Luffy.
One Piece makes some progress overall with the Pica component of this part of the arc as we get Luffy and Zoro, with a couple of others, making their way closer to the head in order to find the man inside the shell. It’s a pretty decent piece overall as it has a lot of fun and silliness along the way, but it also sets things up for Zoro to shine for a bit, which is definitely necessary. The other pieces of this episode are smaller overall, but they do help to nudge things in a few ways that will have more of an impact as it goes on. The dynamic of the island is continuing to change and the incremental aspect of it is definitely working well, making it a fun piece rather than some parts of other arcs where it might feel like it’s dragging at this point.
Streamed By: Crunchyroll
Sony KDL70R550A 70″ LED 1080P HDTV, Apple TV via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.