One Piece Episode #696 Anime Review

One Piece Episode #696 Anime Review Diamante’s intent on taking out some troublesome pests.

What They Say:
Diamante has Rebecca pinned and completely overpowered. If only the Soldier-san of her youth were able to protect her! Meanwhile, Luffy and Law finally surmount incredible odds to land themselves in striking distance of Doflamingo — but Sugar stands in their way!

The Review:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Though there wasn’t a huge range in character arcs involved the last time around, it moved around enough that you felt like it touched on some key ones while not providing any major focus. Rebecca’s story felt like it could be the main one for that moment though as she faced off against Diamante and his overwhelming power, while also providing for some good tension overall. But we also got a couple of other quick hit areas, including a little time with the Headcrackers and Luffy making more progress with Law while others stepped up to put themselves between Luffy and the enemy of the moment. All efforts continue to be pushing towards Sunflower Fields for most of the cast that’s aware of it, though our ship-based crew have still been out of the picture for an age now, leaving me wondering what they’re all up to.

A good chunk of the first half of this episode focuses on the continuing fight between Diamante and Rebecca, which plays out well in a general sense since she’s outclassed at the moment and he’s pretty much a jerk with the way he plays it. But it’s also a lot of fun visually as it plays out because of the sunflowers, the height difference and just the colors of it all. With her having gotten a hold of the key that Luffy and the others need, she’s taken on the good position of trying to get it to them over anything else, and that includes fighting back against those that have oppressed her and her people. But there’s only so long Diamante will let her run and play, which leads to a quick but brutal sequence between the two. It’s got some great tension to it in general, right up to when she finally realizes she’s at the end and calls for help, which is timed well to Kyros arriving.

Not surprisingly, while Kyros does push back and defend Rebecca, it’s not something that Diamante is going to take laying down – for long. The result is a continuation of the strong visuals we’ve had for this episode as these two go at it, now with Rebecca watching on, and just as Luffy arrives up the special stairs to get there, bringing these into contact once again after many episodes apart. Bringing Luffy into the mix to fight against Diamante, and Law as well, it connects things together in a way that’s long needed. But it’s also good to see Kyros taking point on this with Diamante, allowing Luffy and Law to head off for Doflamingo. While I would have preferred to see all three gang up and deal with Diamante, this is par for the course in action shows, and the need to deal with Doflamingo is strong.

In Summary:
One Piece largely focuses on one fight here as we get time with Diamante being the dominant thing, and the first half of it is mostly Rebecca doing her best to survive in order to get the key to Luffy. This works well just from its visual design, but it also has a good energy because it doesn’t continually shift away. The arrival of Kyros changes the dynamic a bit, emotionally as well for Rebecca, and then it ramps up all the more with Luffy and Law stopping by. Even though that’s mostly just an encouragement thing, it does start drawing the character threads together more and pushes Luffy closer to Doflamingo. Though it looks like Sugar is next to cross paths with him, which makes me cringe just a little bit.

Grade: B

Streamed By: Crunchyroll

Review Equipment:
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.

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One Piece Episode #696 Anime Review