Dead Man Walking, anime style.
What They Say
The tension mounts as Ace is lead to the execution ground. As the event draws nearer, Luffy's ability to reach his brother on time is in question! All of this will have to wait, though, because Fleet Admiral Sengoku has an earth shattering revelation about Ace's past!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
One Piece has certainly had its fair share of slow episodes as of late, though some of them have been decent in parts, but it's not unexpected considering that they're trying to slow things down a bit between arcs out of necessity with where the manga is. As previously stated, I would have preferred that they spent more time with each of the Straw Hats than they did in order to give us a real look at them for awhile rather than those short ones, but there may be a method to their madness in barreling through them as they appear to have done.
Over the course of the Impel Down arc, the focus was entirely on Luffy getting in to free Ace. With him not reaching him and Ace being taken out before he could get there, we didn't get all that much time with Ace overall. There were some good scenes to be had by him as we got some glimmerings of what he was going through, but by and large Ace has been the strong and silent type as he awaits what will happen, at least that's how it looks. Much of the world seems to be in a similar mindset as we get a bit of a tour of the world to see how everyone is anticipating what will happen, whether it will be all out war if Whitebeard appears or if the execution will go off without a hitch and nothing will happen at all.
The first half of the episode does a good job of establishing the locale of Marineford and all that's being done to prep for it. With five of the Seven Warlords there to take care of things above, a number of the Navy Admirals below and something like a hundred thousand naval men there as well, they're ready for seemingly anything. With hint of things going badly at Marineford once before, some twenty years ago with Shiki who we last saw in Impel Down related somewhat to the Strong World movie, there's at least some idea that things can happen there that doesn't go the Navy's way. The Navy is putting on quite the spectacle with all of it and there's even a broadcast going out for it where they're trying to push Ace into revealing something he definitely does not want to reveal. All as Luffy gets every closer with his current gang to Marineford.
After the last batch of episodes that left me feeling pretty underwhelmed in total, One Piece is setting itself up really well here by going back to that epic feeling while still being kept very much to the personal level. The examination of what's going into Ace's execution is intriguing as is the way they're bringing out some decidedly huge news through revealing his lineage to the general population. With the threat of Whitebeard coming to Marineford and the reality of Luffy and his crew edging ever closer, it looks like the potential for bloodshed is huge. And a lot of it could come from Ace going by his reactions to events towards the end here as he may lose his cool. The next episode cannot come fast enough.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.