Anime Reel – Anime & Manga TV News

Why You Should Start Watching One Piece

Posted on: October 30, 2009

One Piece Silliness!

The whole series is like this, but without puppets.

Now is the perfect time to start following One Piece, and I’ll tell you why.

One Piece is one of the most popular manga in history, with over 170 million copies sold over the past 12 years of its existence. It embodies the Shonen Jump spirit and takes it to the next level, combining epic action with silly comedy and a sweeping storyline that draws you in with its many well-developed characters. The main problem is that One Piece is so freaking long,  it’s hard to jump into the series without being overwhelmed by the sheer volume of it.

This year, though, VIZ Media and FUNimation are making it easy to be a One Piece fan, whether you’re a grizzled veteran or an interested newcomer.

It’s a refreshing change of pace, because American fandom of One Piece hasn’t had much support before – at least not to the level of its Shonen Jump co-stars Naruto, Bleach, and Yu-Gi-Oh!. VIZ Media’s releases of One Piece lagged far behind the Japanese manga, while the 4Kids dub was censored and edited into near-unrecognizability.

Now, both the anime and manga for One Piece are easier to find than ever before, between FUNimation’s official One Piece simulcast and VIZ’s initiative to have all of the One Piece manga released by June 2010. Both approaches are making serious headway on getting American fans caught up with the series without drowning them in new stuff.

On the manga side, VIZ is releasing about 5 manga volumes a month until they’re caught up to the present story arc – which is fine, because the manga is not only an enjoyable read, but it flies by really fast because it’s just so good. I managed to burn through just over 20 volumes of the Japanese release in a weekend, and I barely even noticed the passage of time because I was enthralled by the crazy adventures of the Straw Hat Pirates (full disclosure: I skipped the Skypiea arc, because I think it was not very good, but that’s the only part I skipped). It shouldn’t take very long at all to start reading One Piece and catch up, and I guarantee that you’ll love the light-hearted fun.

FUNimation has the harder job of getting fans caught up, but I can’t help but appreciate the good work they’re doing with the releases. Fans can watch the current story arc starting with the Sabaody Archipelago arc and going into the unbelievably good Impel Down storyline, and at the same time they can catch the origins as FUNimation releases a couple of the early episodes each week. The giant gap in the middle isn’t as big a problem as it could be, since you can appreciate vintage One Piece while you don’t feel like you have to lag behind the story. It’s easy to hit the ground running.

It’s easier than ever to become a One Piece fan, and you really should be, because One Piece just may be the best manga of the last decade-plus! Pirate adventures, silly antics, and gripping and deep storylines all combine into a wonderfully entertaining whole.

So what’re you waiting for? Start watching One Piece now and get caught up!

2 Responses to "Why You Should Start Watching One Piece"

Keep up the great work Dom.
Been a fan of yours since MT, glad to see you enjoy One Piece as much as I do.

I completely agree, One Piece is a fantastic manga.
I’ve been reading since they dealt with Arlong and his fishmen, and I still love reading new chapters every week.
But you didn’t miss much by skipping the Skypiea Arc, it was mostly just filler, save for Luffy meeting Blackbeard for the first time.

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