Doflamingo vs Luffy

Doflamingo is a very powerful fighter but Luffy has certainly surpassed him at this point. His string abilities just won’t be enough to break through Luffy’s haki or deal enough meaningful damage to put him down. At this point Luffy is in a completely different league and wouldn’t need any gears to win this. A few haki infused punches would be enough to take Doflamingo down for the count. Luffy wins.

Top 30 Strongest One Piece Characters

All right so there was recently a 13+ hour stream about the top 30 strongest One Piece characters but no matter how many lists I saw, I didn’t see one that really lined up. They all seemed to fumble the beginning, middle, or end if you ask me. So I figured I’d jump in and just throw my list out there. Keep in mind a few things though. First, I am ranking all of the characters as they are right now so not getting into end of series power ups and such. This is also only including characters who are alive or probably alive. Unless you are confirmed dead then you can be in this list. Also unlike the battles where you have to have feats, I’m going by portrayal and feats in this one. So now lets just dive in here!

30. Sengoku

Sengoku just barely makes the list but I think he works as a solid gatekeeper. His Buddha ability is really quite solid and as a big government fighter he does have a ton of haki. He isn’t fast though so most of the fighters above him would be able to easily exploit that and take him down.

29. Queen

Queen is super durable but a lack of speed is what keeps him fairly low on this list as well. You just can’t hope to succeed too much without a great deal of speed and it’s even the reason why he ended up losing the fight. When you’re getting blitzed on all sides then it is already too late to mount much of a comeback.

28. Shiryu

Shiryu’s sword skills are good and of course he has invisibility too. When you add both of those things together then it is going to be difficult for any opponent to really keep him on the defensive. I need to see more out of him to raise the guy further on the list but I do think that the guy is very promising as a fighter.

27. Raleigh

Raleigh is old and past his prime so he’s lower than he would normally be but the guy was still able to scare Blackbeard. I think that has to count for something. His sword skills also wouldn’t have deteriorated over the years even if his speed did. So this may be a bit of a low spot for him but it’s one that he would be able to defend very well.

26. Garp

Garp is the strongest out of the old man trio without a doubt. He still has a lot of power within his punches and could destroy anyone under him. Speed is what slows him down here as it does for so many other fighters. I don’t think he would be an easy victory for most of the guys above him but they would still conquer the guy.

25. Marco

Marco has incredible healing abilities and fire usage but he’s lacking KO power. The guy can just never put any of his opponents down and that will cost him in the end. You have to be able to put your opponents down or ultimately you will be the one getting pushed back. That’s something I hope to see him improve on in the future.

24. Kid

Kid is clearly meant to be one of the strongest fighters but I just haven’t seen it yet. His metal powers are just way too limited in scope though. He will have a hard time landing blows on any of the stronger fighters or really hurting them to be honest since most of them surpassed metal a long time ago. This is what is going to give him a really hard time.

23. Fujitora

Fujitora may be an admiral but he’s much lower than any of the others. He seems to have more trouble with all of his opponents than he should. Perhaps being blind takes more out of him than he would actually care to admit but he would need a really good powerup to go further up the list.

22. Doflamingo

Doflamingo may be a lower rank than Queen within Kaido’s army but he is certainly more powerful if you ask me. His strings could not be cut by almost the whole One Piece cast in Dressrosa and he was able to last long enough to outlast Luffy’s Gear 4. This guy was an absolute beast in battle.

21. S Hawk

As we near the top 20, S. Hawk is the next gatekeeper. This guy has only just appeared but he already had Blackbeard on the defensive and looked really impressive in his early scenes. I see a ton of potential behind the guy and hopefully he lasts long enough to show us what he can really do. If he gets even one on screen fight I can see him going further up.

20. Dragon

Dragon has yet to do much of anything and is pure hype. Mainly the issue here is that I’m not really sure if he will end up being much of a fighter. He may just be a tactician in the end and I’d say it’s already hinted that Sabo is more powerful. Dragon could surprise me but we’re deep into the story so I have reservations and he could even drop lower.

19. Imu

Then we have Imu who is like the reverse Dragon. He has no feats either although there was one lightning strike which may have been his. I’m very 50/50 on if he will be able to fight or not but if he can fight then this is the minimum on where he should be. I’d love to see him as the final boss in a Kaguya type role but we’ll see if that is in the cards or not for the future.

18. Ulti

Next up is Ulti who was always the best member of the group in Wano. She nearly defeated Luffy straight up and even got back up after a fight with Big Mom. Because the rest of her group was not that impressive I think it lowered her stocks a bit but she was definitely an opponent to be feared without a doubt.

17. Blackbeard

Blackbeard is this low because of his lack of speed. Also he seems to be nervous in every fight that he was in. The guy keeps getting stronger by stealing devil fruits so I could see him doing more of that in the future. That said, right now there are still a number of opponents who would very quickly take him down for the count.

16. Sabo

Sabo is a fire expert who seems to have a lot of potential. I’ve been less impressed with him than most but it is still fair to say that he’s a top fighter. His dragon claw has really dealt a whole lot of damage to his opponents as well. If he just had a slightly stronger variation of that then he could go further up but as it is we’re approaching the halfway point anyway.

15. Lucci

Lucci got a huge boost with his awakening as otherwise I wouldn’t have even put him on the list. With it he was able to hold his own against Gear 5 Luffy so you have to give him a whole lot of props there. His speed and power were already really good so this was finally enough for me to justify moving him up close to the top 10. It was a really impressive showing.

14. Kizaru

Since Kizaru can move at the speed of light he is really high up here. That said, the fighters above him can counter that well enough and keep it moving. It doesn’t help that Kizaru never seems to get a whole lot of respect by his opponents who beat him up anyway. Maybe he will surprise me in the next few chapters if we actually get to see him fight though.

13. Aokiji

Aokiji was able to stalemate Akainu for a while which is a huge feat. It’s safe to say that he should be able to defeat any admiral aside from Akainu. His ice mastery is super impressive and it seems like he may end up being one of the final bosses of the series which will also be a very good look for him.

12. Akainu

Akainu really needs to show me something soon but as the fleet admiral I do think that he should be able to be a top fighter. Fire powers are always really good after all and you don’t get to be the top boss without a whole lot of abilities at your disposal. This is why I have him all the way up here even if his speed could be a little better. Haki + Logia abilities should be a really busted combo.

11. Law

Law may be lacing in physical ability but his devil fruit is so handy that it won’t matter as much as you would expect. He can stab right through his opponents and that would be the end of them. He can teleport thanks to Room and so his range and overall attack power is just absolutely insane. He won’t be taking any Ls below this spot.

10. King

King may not be a Yonkou but he certainly fights like one and would be in my list for the top 10. His sheer durability and power make him too much of a threat not to make it. He is effectively invincible while in his fire mode and the only way for any character to hold their own was for him to scale it back. I do think this invincibility has a limit which the top 9 could crack but he is still tough to stop.

9. Big Mom

Big Mom may have earned the nickname of Big Meme due to being rather unimpressive relative to her station in Wano but at the same time she is still a very powerful fighter. I would expect that she can still defeat anyone under her because of her sheer durability and power. Lacking in speed just won’t be enough to sideline her.

8. Katakuri

Katakuri over Big Mom? Yes I’d definitely say that he has earned it. Big Mom is powerful and she is a huge pirate with dominating strength but she won’t be stopping Katakuri here. He has the edge in speed and seems to have kept up with his training based on Film Red. It’s still tough to see very many fighters passing him in overall stats which is why he will stay up here.

7. Sanji

Sanji may still be behind Zoro in the rankings but he has really proven himself during Wano. His speed and power are still really impressive and I could see him surpassing Yamato at some point. I don’t think we’ve fully seen everything that Sanji can do just yet and in a final battle onslaught I’d like to see him be included with the main cast next time instead of remaining on the side.

6. Yamato

While nobody seems to take Yamato being able to hold off Kaido as seriously as they should, she did still stalemate his hybrid form for some time. That’s not a small feat and she is the most underrated fighter in the series. I definitely see her keeping a spot in the top 10 even when the series has ended. That’s just how powerful she is.

5. Shanks

The Shanks pick scares me a bit because as the series goes on I keep thinking that he might get bumped off screen. If that happens then expect him to sink a whole lot but right now I want to believe in the hype. He has the best haki feat in the whole verse so if he can just build off of that then we should be all set.

4. Zoro

Might be a hot take here but he’s rather close to Luffy in terms of stats. Now that he has awakened his haki abilities there is almost nobody who can catch him. He has been step in step with Luffy for most of the series and that gap has closed up once again. Make no mistake, Luffy would beat Zoro but there are few others who could.

3. Luffy

Part of what helps Luffy is that I don’t think he will get any more power ups in the series. I think he has already reached his pinnacle of strength and can defeat just about anyone right now. I always see him ranked rather low in these lists but he has proven himself time and time again. There’s just no way that Gear 5 is going down to anyone who is not one of the top 2 without some big circumstances in the background.

2. Kaido

Kaido took on pretty much the entire One Piece cast and still nearly won the fight in the end. It’s hard to see just about anyone surpassing him in the end. I just don’t think it’s going to happen and the anime made him even more impressive. This guy is absolutely not someone to underestimate at this point and if he ever returns then the rest of the cast is doomed.

1. Mihawk

Finally in first is Mihawk. There’s not a whole lot more that needs to be said about this guy. He is the world’s strongest swordsman, even more talented than Shanks. His abilities continue to grow further and further so right now I don’t see anyone stopping him. His raw stats are just way too crazy at this point in time but of course part of the trickyness in being so mysterious is that there is always a chance he could turn out to be a dud. Hopefully that is not the case but he seems like the most balanced fighter at the top.

So that’s a wrap! We’ll see if things change in the future but right here right now this is how I’d stack things up. The series has quite a huge cast so it took some time to get this all set but I’d say it came out really great.

One Piece – Defeat Him! The Pirate Ganzack Review

It’s time to jump far into the past with this one for a retro One Piece adventure. It’s a full original story with just the first 3 Strawhats so that’s pretty fun. The team has grown a lot over the years but there’s still something special about seeing the first crewmates team up to take a villain down. The special goes by very quickly but makes the most of its roughly 30 minutes. We get some good action here and Luffy gets one step closer to being the King of the Pirates!

The story starts with Luffy and the crew chilling on a boat when they are attacked by a giant monster. Unfortunately they are at sea so Luffy isn’t able to fight once he hits the water and this prevents Zoro from claiming the easy victory because he has to save Luffy. So Nami is kidnapped and eventually Luffy finds himself on a mysterious island. He saves a girl named Medaka from two pirates and finds out from her that the pirate known as Ganzack has taken down the whole village. They no longer have enough food to survive and need someone to save them. Luffy may not be a traditional hero but he likes his food so he is ready to help.

Ganzack actually does rather well as the villain here. For starters he actually takes down Luffy twice which is likely way more than anyone was expecting here. He just takes him down like it’s nothing and you may expect that once, but twice? Granted Luffy was much weaker back then but it’s still fairly unheard of to be taken out like that. Ganzack also talks about being the King of the Pirates several times which helps to really establish him as a big threat. He’s not someone who’s just playing around here but trying to accomplish his dreams.

There isn’t much more to his character beyond this but it’s enough to still make him a solid villain. I liked his fighting style with the little crab arms. It wasn’t something that you’d quickly forget. I dare say Zoro would have had a tougher time beating him though. This was early enough in the series where you could make the case that Zoro was stronger than Luffy. Some would say Luffy didn’t truly pass Zoro until he obtained Gear 2 but it would be a fun debate either way.

Regardless Zoro definitely looks great here though. He commands a lot of attention as the pirate hunter and pretty much takes down the whole army on his own. He didn’t need any help and he didn’t take any Ls. He was just around dominating the whole time with his 3 sword style. Meanwhile Nami is surviving as bet she can with a little trickery and it makes sense as a strategy. When you can fool the villain really easy then you may as well do that right? Luffy and Zoro should still have enough confidence in her not to think that she has actually turned evil or anything like that. I’m cool with the plan because it didn’t seem super risky and it’s not like she had to do anything villainous in order to gain Ganzack’s trust. So it worked out pretty well.

Meanwhile this is probably not Luffy’s best appearance since he was getting wrecked so often but I guess we can chalk it up to him being overconfident. By the end he was ready to make his comeback and start winning. It just took him some time to really get settled. Luffy gets credit for not backing down from a fight although that’s the bare minimum for any good lead.

It’s definitely interesting seeing One Piece with such a different animation style. It feels extra retro and not having the same sound effects when Luffy does his attacks will take a little getting used to. Still, I think this group could have done a fine job with the series. I liked the speed showings they gave to the characters and the action scenes are on point. I wouldn’t call this high budget but it has aged well enough so it works on that level. The soundtrack is more on the forgettable side for the most part. There are a few scenes where it feels like the music is about to pick up but then the scene ends real quick before that can happen.

The special is really short as I mentioned but it does work well. You’ll be engaged from start to finish and it’s really just a chance to see the characters get to fight some villains. It would have been nice if Ganzack had a right hand man or something so Zoro could fight him instead of the normal minions though. That would have helped make the film even cooler but this way at least they had Zoro taking on the whole army.

The original character here was also not bad. Medaka may just be a kid who wants to help her town but she doesn’t get in the way and actually saves Luffy twice. Once directly and the other indirectly by triggering his rage mode. So she really did a good job here and was likable which isn’t always easy for the heroes made up for the movies and specials. In general the writing here was on point which really goes a long way to making this a solid special.

Overall, If you’re looking for more One Piece content then this is a special you will want to check out. Ganzack makes for a memorable villain and there is a lot of action here so that’s all you really need. There is never a dull moment here and everyone gets something to do. It’s too bad they don’t make short specials like this quite as much nowadays. Personally with how One Piece sells I’d be trying to generate one of these every year. I’m sure the profits would be enough to cover the expenses each time. Maybe have a dedicated company that would handle these so it doesn’t impact the show.

Overall 7/10

Luffy vs Uta

Strawhat Luffy, now there is a name that brings fear to the hearts of many. As powerful as Uta may be, the victor would never be in doubt here. Luffy can greatly increase his natural abilities with Haki and the gears system. Any defense Uta makes is one that he would be able to quickly shatter. Such is the power of the Gum Gum Fruit and his stats are just too far above hers. Luffy wins.

Luffy vs Yahya

This is a tribute to One Piece Film: Red. Luffy looked really good in this one. While he didn’t get to fight a whole lot during the film, he was usually in control and took things well. He would not agree with Yahya’s more extreme sense of justice and would shut the guy down real quick. Yahya won’t be able to land any kicks against someone as fast as Luffy. Luffy wins.

One Piece Film: Red Review

“The hierarchy of the One Piece franchise is about to change” Well this film definitely pulled it off. Eventually every great franchise has its definitive movie. That one installment that you feel will never be surpassed. Some do this multiple times like Dragon Ball Z (Original Broly movie, Resurrection F, Dragon Ball Super: Broly) but most will at least do it once. Justice League Crisis on Two Earths, Bleach: Hell Verse, Avengers Infinity War, Spider-Man 3, the original Mortal Kombat, Transformers G1 the movie, etc. Well this has finally happened with One Piece as it’s hard to see this one going down. Film: Red delivers on every front from action to music and it gets a massive bump in the theatrical experience. It’s a film that you have to see as soon as possible and it’s relatively new audience friendly so you can jump in and have a blast.

The movie starts out with a bunch of people yelling for help and they’re sad because the world is going to the pits and nobody is there to help them. The world is in the great pirate era after all so villains are everywhere and the government is so completely corrupt that you can’t really count on them to help you out either. Well, one girl has a dream…a dream of world peace! Her name is Uta and this is her story. In the present she has invited all of her fans to an island so that they can see her sing in person. Throughout her career she has only sung virtually through the cameras so this is a big deal. Just about everyone has come to watch her songs and 70% of the entire planet will either be watching her on TV or on the island. She almost literally has the world at her grasp and now she can try to achieve her dream. Is the dream really possible though?

Luffy is glad to see her because they used to be childhood friends until she mysteriously vanished one day. There’s a lot of questions about where she went and why she vanished but there isn’t much time to ask her at the concert. Things take a turn though when she announces that the concert will never end and she’s not letting anyone off the island. Is it even possible to have a never ending concert and how will this bring about world peace? All Luffy knows is that he needs to stop Uta but it won’t be easy as she has grown tremendously powerful over to the years to the point where there are few on this planet who can challenge her. He will have to go full force because if he can’t defeat her then he will never become King of the Pirates!

Right off the bat I can say that the movie absolutely delivers on the big songs here. One of the things the movie was getting a lot of hype for was how many songs it was going to have. Instead of calling it part musical I’d call the film part concert. Even as the battles are going you will usually have some kind of song going. It really helps to pump up the scene. One of the villainous songs sounds like something out of Lost Song and then you’ve got a ton of really peppy songs like in Sword Art Online. Hearing these in the full Imax settings was excellent. My ears were still ringing long after the film had ended and I was back home. I don’t think I’ve heard a movie with such loud decibels before but it’s perfect for a concert film.

You really felt like you were in one and that’s why the theater experience is a good boost to the film so I recommend seeing it in that setting at least once. The songs will hold up even after that though and I look forward to finding them online to listen to. Meanwhile the animation is also the best that it’s been in the series. It’s not surprising as One Piece’s animation grew quite noticeably better during Wano. And if that’s how good the show looks you can only imagine how good the movie would appear. They didn’t hold anything back here and every scene really shines. The colors are bright and there is a ton of movement in the fights.

Everyone looks powerful here and it also helps to really show just how powerful Uta is with her being able to block so many hits. In general I also liked the way her powers worked. Yes it seems incredibly broken but why shouldn’t there be a Devil Fruit that is this good? Eventually someone needs to have the best fruit out there and why not have hers be the best one? Because I think it’s fair to say that no other fruit can compare. It does have its own weaknesses of course but in most scenarios you figure that she will be able to defeat her opponents without a problem. The power levels in the film were all handled really well so I don’t have any issues on that front. I did find it a little funny that some randoms would actually challenge Luffy though. He’s one of the emperors now, would they actually try to challenge Kaido or Shanks? I feel like Luffy doesn’t get a lot of respect right now, maybe he just looks too young?

People who start their One Piece experience with this film may find Luffy to appear a bit on the weaker side but he is holding back for almost the whole film so he doesn’t really get to cut loose. That’s probably one difference compared to the previous films which is that Luffy doesn’t get a lot of action. It helps the movie avoid the usual power level concerns though. Keep in mind that Luffy is already Top 10 in the verse by this film so if he was having trouble with anyone then that would be hard to really make sense of. This way that isn’t really messed with.

Luffy also looks great in general here. He handles things very maturely and also does his best to respect Uta’s wishes even if they disagree on things. When she starts talking about how she doesn’t like pirates and how he should stop being one, he just walks away instead of trying to talk her out of it. He’s just not planning on having an argument and is ready to walk away. Perhaps confronting her would be best but they’re both super determined characters so he probably realized that it wouldn’t amount to anything. He also just doesn’t want to fight her since they’re still friends.

Luffy will fight his friends if he has to like when he took Usopp down but for the most part ever since then he tries to handle things peacefully like when Sanji would try and attack him. So it’s a solid character moment here and Luffy ended up fighting when the time was right. His best film appearance is likely still in Stampede but overall he has looked great in quite a few of the movie and this one would be near the top as well.

Uta also looks great here and is an excellent film original character. Film original characters usually have had a negative rep over the years although recently it hasn’t been much of an issue. That’s because they tend to be rather annoying and hold the cast back but that isn’t the case here as Uta is close to being the main character and a lot of the film is about her dream. We get flashbacks scattered throughout the movie on her childhood and what led her down this path. It’s all really emotional stuff and her plan is actually a very interesting one.

Make no mistake, she is a villain here and has gone off the deep end, but I do appreciate films where the villain is following their own sense of justice. It’s much easier to follow a villain who is at least trying to do the right thing and has strong ideals than one who is just evil for no good reason. (There’s a place for those villains too of course) Uta can handle herself in a fight and also really thought things through here. She had a strong plan that was nearly unbreakable so you really can’t ask for much more than that. It’s fair to say that she was the greatest threat to the planet in terms of sheer numbers and I’m not sure any future One Piece villain will top that.

At the end of the day Uta was by herself for many years aside from the old guy at the kingdom and she never lost hope. She just kept fighting until she got to her own answer on how to achieve world peace. It wasn’t the right answer perhaps but at least it was one. Now the film got a lot of hype for Shanks showing up but of course you shouldn’t expect him to do a lot here. It’s a fairly small role for him but it’s still nice to see the guy. He does leave an impact in his few scenes and you can tell that he is powerful. I have my doubts on if he could really take on Luffy right now but either way he is in the upper ranks.

I did disagree with Shanks’ decision to leave Uta though. You can watch the film to see how that all plays out but at the end of the day I think he needed to trust Uta to choose her own future a bit more. He may have thought himself to be doing something noble but I did not agree with it. It was not the right thing to do imo. It’s also nice to see his crew even if they don’t look as impressive as the Strawhats. Personally I think Luffy’s crew is easily the most powerful in the series by this point.

They get their own subplot on finding out a way to try and stop Uta but for the most part they aren’t as big a focus. You get to see them get some action and all though so everyone uses their special abilities. Zoro continues to prove why he is Luffy’s strongest fighter during this as several characters even react when he does his ultimate attack. Even Yasopp was impressed and that guy has seen Shanks fight up close and personal. Zoro was also the first one to react when Luffy’s crew was attacked and I appreciate that. You have to defend them right away. I give Bartolomeo similar credit because he was the first one to step in and try to help Luffy when he was nearly captured while a lot of other characters just froze.

There are a lot of guest stars here so be on the lookout for them. Some like Katakuri should have gotten a bit more to do if you ask me though. You almost wondered what the point of Katakuri was here since he didn’t end up adding much to the fight. It was still nice to see him though. Oven and Brulee were some of the more random ones initially but it did help to make the film feel a bit more ambitious. Having the canon characters show up to fight will do that to a movie.

The film does ultimately resort to a giant CGI monster as the final boss though so that still seems to be a curse in the anime movie industry. Why can’t we end with a humanoid battle? So many of them love the giant monster at the end and it’s just not as exciting. The movie’s top notch animation makes the most of it but having Uta as the final boss herself would have been a lot of fun. I’d say that would have absolutely been the best way to go here.

This movie has a ton of replay value either way. The pacing is really fast, I remember being surprised when the film goes to the present and we see that Luffy and the gang are already at the concert. No time is spent on them travelling there or an opening montage to set up. They’re just ready right from the jump and we get into the singing. It probably happens within the opening 10 minutes and things just keep escalating from there. The film doesn’t take many breaks either. We get some lore and flashbacks but always very briefly until we jump to the next big scene. The film is just really high energy and that fits in with the series always being a colorful adventure.

Fans of the government/navy who have lasted this long will probably be fine but if you’re someone who was on the fence about if they were good guys or not will want to step back here. They look so evil that it’s almost funny. They basically figure at one point that they should sacrifice millions of people to take one character down and you can probably guess who. At that point it’s not even cracking a few eggs to make an omelet. You’re destroying the whole farm for one. They just have no justification at this point and seem to just be trying to murder people for no reason. Kizaru was ready to destroy people without a second thought and the pirates have to stop them. Yeah the government definitely appear to be the true enemies here which is why anyone working for them feels complicit after a while. Just look at how they serve the Celestial Dragons who are still as evil and petty as they come.

Overall, One Piece Film: Red is excellent and one of the top anime films. I’m confident that it will be remembered as a big game changer for a long time to come. The writing is just excellent and set up a really great rivalry/friendship with Uta and Luffy from the jump. They have a better dynamic than most of the Strawhats to be honest. I can see why she was an instant fan favorite in the franchise. They should really drop Brook off the crew and replace him with someone cool like Uta. I wasn’t a fan of the way the film ended which is the only sour spot there but it’s not a horrible ending or anything like that. (After all, that would have kept this from being the best One Piece film) It’s just not how I would have done things, I would have gone with a slightly different ending because all you need to change is one thing. The scene after the credits is pretty fun though as one character gets re-energized. If you haven’t seen the film yet then it’s definitely time to change that.

Overall 9/10

Ulquiorra vs Luffy

Suggested by Destroyer I’ll be the first to tell you that Luffy’s a tough guy but is he really ready to go up against someone like Ulquiorra? I have my doubts on that one. See, here’s the thing. Ulquiorra is way faster than Luffy and his destructive power is also enough for him to seize a victory really quickly. When you pair those two things together it puts Luffy in a dire position right from the jump and no amount of gears can counter that when you’re just outmatched. Ulquiorra wins.

Luffy vs Gon

Suggested by Destroyer After 1000 chapters you’d expect that Luffy has a bunch of super forms and you would be correct. He has his haki and the gear systems at the ready so at this point even the powers of Nen would not be able to stop him. I expect that Luffy’s speed would just be too great and his armament Haki should be able to block any offensive blows. At this point he just has the edge there. Luffy wins.

One Piece: Episode of Chopper Plus: Bloom in Winter, Miracle Sakura Review

One Piece has the next arc remake with this movie tackling the Tony Tony Chopper arc. While this arc is not considered to be one of the stronger ones and tends to pale in comparison to the new ones, it’s always nostalgic to see the old team. I’d say the crew also learned from the last movie remake and made sure that this one had longer fights and a longer length in general so it felt more like a complete experience. It’s still hard to do a whole arc in one movie but I’d say they did a good job with this one.

The movie starts with the gang on the ship as usual but then Nami gets seriously ill with some kind of virus. She is fading fast and so the heroes stop by a local island to find a doctor. Unfortunately all of the doctors are gone except for one who is regarded as a witch named Dr. Kureha. She lives alone atop a giant mountain so Luffy will have to try and carry Nami there. The main obstacles in his way are: The terrain which is naturally dangerous, Nami’s health which is fragile right now so Luffy can’t fight or make too many sudden movements, and the Wapol pirates who hav e returned to retake the island. Can Luffy save Nami in time or is it too late?

While the whole crew it here, Luffy does most of the work. Zoro and Franky get to beat up some minions and Sanji fights some of the animals but for the most part the rest of the crew is written out. The way they got Sanji out of the big fights was the most awkward though as he injures his back somehow and can’t fight anymore. That scene was really hard to buy. Sanji’s back gave out just like that? I’d have preferred him to lose to one of the pirates instead since at least he would have gone down fighting.

As for the villains, there are two main ones here. First up is Wapol who was in the original arc as well. The guy may not have been super powerful but he does his best with the chomp chomp fruit. He gets a rather big powered up form at the end which may not have been enough to save him but it looked cool enough. Then he has a brother named Musshuru who was made up for this version. He looks rather skilled as he is able to trade blows with Luffy and keep at it for a while. I can’t say he was a very interesting villain but I’m always up for some good fights.

After all, that’s part of the fun in this movie. The characters get to see a lot of action this time. Also, the animation style is very distinct. It’s going for a bit more of an abstract feeling at times with a different color set than usual. I wouldn’t say it beats the classic style but it does help the film stand out which is an important thing in a movie. You want it to feel extra special and this is one way to go about that.

The soundtrack has your typical One Piece themes. Nothing very new and different but they always sound good so I didn’t have a problem with that. The music tunes are fitting for the scenes that they’re in. You can feel Luffy’s determination as he climbs the mountain while the music is going and why he’s a solid lead. The film has its share of emotional moments after all and the soundtrack balances them pretty well.

There are two main doctors here, the one from the flashbacks and the one in the present. In the present we have Dr. Kureha who has done well to continue practicing medicine even when she sees all of her colleagues “vanishing” or being directly captured by the villains. It’s a risky line of work but she doesn’t falter and definitely ends up being a really solid character. She’s the kind of character who has a tough time actually voicing her true feelings but will always help silently.

Dr. Hiriluk is the other character but I did not like him. His personality type is that he’s a really nice guy who is chasing a dream that is nearly impossible to achieve. He wants to make the Sakura blossoms bloom in this winter land despite everyone telling him that this is crazy. Along the way he meets up with Tony Tony Chopper and the two of them become close friends. It’s all good so far but then Hiriluk realizes that he will be dying soon from an incurable disease.

He then makes the wrong choice by shooting at Chopper to make him go away and to get some distance between them. Chopper had been traumatized by guns before so this felt like a really cheap move by the Doctor. I also think he should have just been upfront with Chopper about this. Tell him that death is near and then they can at least enjoy some happy days together at the end. It is much better than trying to destroy your reputation and friendships. So I lost a lot of respect for the Doctor at that point.

Finally we have Tony Tony Chopper who is a nice enough guy. He was never my favorite member of the Strawhats as the guy isn’t much of a fighter and I don’t think his comedy scenes work as well as some of the others but he still does have his moments where he helps out. Ultimately Luffy and friends are able to get him to a better spot but he gets outshined by all of them here.

Overall, Episode of Chopper is a fun adventure. If this is your first way of seeing the arc then you should still be fine. This movie does a good job of recapping things. Some of the events are a little different like we have some members of the team who shouldn’t be around yet. That might confuse you a little when you go back to the show and see them introduced but I want to say that it’s a very small amount of people who would have actually started the series with the movie recaps instead of watching the show. The movie is a good action adventure film in the end. It’s not trying to be much more than that and doesn’t need to be. Whether you like the franchise or not, you should have a good time with this one.

Overall 7/10

Barney Ross vs Luffy

This is a tribute to the Episode of Alabasta. Barney may be good with guns but those won’t be very useful against Luffy. In fact, no weapon that Barney has will be of any use here because Luffy’s haki will absolutely be enough to block every move. There’s just no defeating a fighter this powerful and Barney’s about to learn that the hard way. Good luck trying to defeat the man who will become King of the Pirates! Luffy wins.