One Piece Volume 6

Volume 6 is here and we’re quickly ramping up in excitement. Last time we finished up the Kuro pirates arc and Usopp officially joined the crew. We met up with Johnny and Yosaku who are Zoro’s buddies. The crew traveled to the sailing restaurant Baratie where we met Sanji, the next member to possibly join the crew.

A lot happens in this volume. We learn our first tidbits about the grand line here that are actually interesting. Don Krieg’s failed excursion shows that having a good navigator and a solid grasp of the weather is highly important. We also learn that some of the fighters there are in a league of their own. We haven’t heard the term “seven warlords” yet at this point, but Dracule “Hawk Eyes” Mihawk is our first encounter with one of the greats. He is the most skilled sword fighter in the world. The way this story is set up, with Mihawk being Zoro’s goal in the long run, it’s kind of crazy he shows up this early, we’re just barely at around chapter 50. Of course their duel is cut short by Mihawk being so incredibly strong that Zoro can’t even begin to compete. This is a great way of showing your reader that the story has much more to give. Mihawk casually appearing, beating the crap out of Zoro, and then leaving again shows just how vast the ocean is.

We also learn that Zeff, the restaurant head chef, used to be a powerful pirate that traveled the grand line. He at some point lost his leg and retired from being a pirate, but from what we’ve seen so far he’s not the only person in this story who fights with his feet. Sanji does the same. He shows off his convictions in this volume a lot. He feeds anyone who needs it, no questions asked. But once you’ve been properly fed, don’t expect him to keep being a nice guy. It’s pretty clear that he has a reason why he is the way he is. But something  tells me that we’ll dive into this more deeply in the next volume.

We also get a first look into Nami’s struggle. She’s seemed happy-go-lucky so far and although we knew she wasn’t to be trusted, seeing her cry and say a name we haven’t heard yet, belle-mere, gives us a different angle as to what is going on. She’s told us that she’s trying to buy a village and we’ve seen that she is interested in a certain wanted figure with a high bounty. If you haven’t read the upcoming parts of the story, see if you can start figuring out what is going on with her story. I sure didn’t know what was going on until I watched the full thing, but I am excited about getting there soon. 

With Mihawk leaving and Zoro and Usopp leaving to find Nami, we are left with the cooks, Don Krieg and his pirates and our rubbery boy Luffy. That’s the fight we’ll see in the next volume. I like Baratie as an arc a lot more than I did Kuro Pirates. Having said that, the villains in both arcs aren’t particularly interesting. I think Oda is right when he says Buggy is his favorite character. At least when it comes to bad guys he is the most interesting one. Don Krieg just seems like a cartoon villain. Now admittedly, this is a comic/cartoon so it makes sense, but for a show in which some of the villains and storylines go pretty deep and talk about total societal reform, having a guy who’s just a bad guy in any situation he can be, feels a bit cheap. But again, this is early days. We’re about 50 chapters in and much more could happen.

The cover of this volume has the word “neighbours” graffitied on  the wall. Even though it’s an American translation, it seems that Oda himself prefers the British spelling here. The cover stories per chapter still tell the story of Buggy’s adventures which culminate in him meeting a lovely pirate lady. She looks vaguely familiar though, I wonder if we’ve seen her somewhere before.

I think that’s most of what I have to say about this volume. Like last week, I went through this at a fast pace, really enjoying the story after such a long time. There’s a lot of small details that I don’t remember much about. There’s also little foreshadowing in the manga that the first few times I didn’t realize were hints of things to come. I’m hoping to catch some of them this time around. Either way, that’s enough from me, thanks for reading!

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