Coming face to face against the agents of CP9, the Straw Hat Pirates once again prove their might in One Piece: Season Five, Voyage Three. Nico Robin has finally asked for help from Luffy and the gang, while she’s been held up by Spandam and the evil members of CP9. Each of the crew individually faces off with the assassins, where they showcase new fighting techniques that they’ve mastered, while fighting throughout Enies Lobby. From Chopper’s new deadly transformation to Sanji’s flaming kicks, each of the Straw Hats showcase their determination for saving one of their own. In these action packed episodes, One Piece once again proves how much of a strong series it is, due to its charm, characters and style, that has made me a bonafide fan for life.
While the last set began to pair off all of the Straw Hats against different members of CP9, in Voyage Three, things really kick into high gear. Many of the crew show off abilities that they’ve never used, up until this point, which make the fights visually arresting and engaging. In typical One Piece fashion, there’s still great comedic bits during the most tense battles, which continues to give the series the ability make one laugh at any given moment. The animation is extremely consistent and with how intense the series has recently gotten, its some of the best fight sequences that have been animated thus far.
There’s a also a moment where the stakes are raised and the overall tension shifts into overdrive. While character’s lives are on the line and there’s the distinct possibility that one could even die, this plot point happens so suddenly, that it creates a genuine sense of dread for the Straw Hats’ survival. It’s this very execution of both plot elements and character driven drama that have always given One Piece an edge that most shonen series can barely muster. Where most shows tend to fall into a predictable slump that is a formula, One Piece, from the very beginning, has always brought a fresh approach that I can honestly say that I’d be willing to watch all 300 episodes again in a heartbeat.
The extras included in this boxed set of One Piece contains an episode commentary for episode 288, textless intros and outros and two behind the scenes videos with voice actors Johnathan Brooks and Jason Liebrecht, two of my favorite voice actors in the business. The Johnathan Brooks interview, who voices Foxy in One Piece, is very candid and playful, which shows that he was the perfect fit for the character. Liebrecht, who lends his voice talent to CP9 member Rob Lucci, is a much more thoughtful and in depth interview, which highlight the work that gets placed into dubbing the series into English.
I know that by this point, its pretty obvious how I feel about One Piece. With this latest boxed set, it continues to prove its popularity and longevity amongst fans around the world, in which I happily include myself. Highly Recommended!