Luffy and the Warden spar once again as the poison fills the area.
What They Say
In the fight to save his brother, Ace, Luffy has made the ultimate sacrifice: putting his life on the line in a battle to the death with Warden Magellan. But is a brother's love enough to defeat the Warden? The answer may shock you!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Over six minutes into the episode and we finally get to the new material. Gotta love One Piece for that alone where a quarter of each episode is dedicated to the opening and recap. As much as I've been enjoying One Piece since leaping ahead from the DVD sets as FUNimation releases them, episodes like this one remind me that I definitely enjoy watching it in marathon form a hell of a lot more. The battle in this episode is good, and I like where it goes for the most part, but having so much opening and recap material means that it's not even worth sitting down for the first six minutes of the stream.
The majority of what's left here is the fight between the two men and like the previous episode it features a lot of intensity to it. Luffy's been an interesting character from the start and only more so the more we get to know him and a fight like this points out one big part of his nature. His inability to give up, the tenacity to really keep at it with determination. Eve after Bon Clay pushes him away, telling him that Magellan's poison would do him in with even the slightest bit of contact, Luffy barrels ahead and tries to beat him senseless with a variety of attacks. There's some good attempts in there, using distance and air powered pushes against him, but the connections don't seem to do much. With the way the Warden is, you can imagine that he'd be the type that wouldn't keep up on his physical side knowing how well his venom attacks are. But in the end, he's still a tough cookie all around to deal with.
The side material to the episode is fun but minor as you have Bon Clay struggling with his abandoning of Luffy since he's so tight with the Straw Hat man. His quick exit leads him to where Buggy and Mister 3 are which means he can start cutting loose on people he can deal with. It's a nice little moment to help break up the intensity of the main fight of the episode. Watching Luffy going at Magellan is really a lot of fun since he's so intense, and literally burning with passion, but it's an area where you wonder how he's able to do it. Knowing that his touch is instant death, you can surmise that his rubbery skin helps him deal with it better than others and Luffy always seems to have a trick up his sleeve. Thankfully, they do make this episode fairly exciting a Luffy gets quite the beating as it's always fun to see the hero suffer before a dramatic comeback.
One Piece is something of a struggle for me at times and episodes like this and a few other recent ones reminded me of that. There's a lot to like here, especially for the drama that Bon Clay brings to the show, but the bulk of it is watching how hard Luffy struggles against Magellan. I don't know how many difficult fights he's had since I've only seen through the Alabasta arc so far, but I love his never quit attitude and the way he puts it all on the line to do what needs to be done, especially for his brother Ace. I do just wish it would speed up a little more on occasion, but at least we're not seeing multiple episodes of the characters just running around at this point.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.