One Piece: what there is to know about this animated saga that in Japan ousted Avatar and other Hollywood tanks

One Piece Film: Red – Credits: @captura

With a presence in Argentina for several decades, anime in film and television is no longer a niche phenomenon, but an established success. The consumption of Japanese comics (also known as manga) and the supply of animated series make up a combo that is irresistible for audiences of all ages. For this reason, the presence of animated Japanese films in cinemas ceased to be an exception and became a welcome trend.

This week it reached the Argentine screens One Piece Film: Redan adventure that is located within one of the longest-running and most successful franchises in Japan, which as dragon ball either Pokemonis also one of the public’s favorite titles here.

The One Piece world

Like many adventure manga along the lines of the aforementioned dragon ball or The Knights of the ZodiacOne Piece tells the story of a young man who becomes the leader of a group of characters who live all kinds of exploits and fight against countless dangerous opponents. In this aspect, the basic formula is not very innovative, but, nevertheless, one piece It presented an original number of nuances that allowed it to consolidate itself as the best exponent of the shonen genre (as it is known in Japan, to the comics aimed at the young public).

Shortly before his execution by the Navy, the greatest pirate in history, Gol D. Roger, revealed that all his treasures are hidden on a remote island. That announcement gives rise to the birth of the great pirate era, with thousands of adventurers launching into the sea in search of that succulent treasure (called, precisely, the One Piece). One of them is Monkey D. Luffy, a boy determined to become the new pirate king, who begins a journey in which he will meet important allies. But the one from one piece it is a world of great wealth, because here there are not only countless civilizations, but also an ingredient that gives many strange characters powers.

Devil Fruits are a type of food that gives whoever eats them some kind of extraordinary ability (the only downside is that that person can’t swim, a damning trait for any would-be pirate). Like an Obelix sinking into the pot, Luffy as a child accidentally ate one of these fruits, thus gaining the ability to turn his body into rubber, a trait that allows him to practice ingenious fighting techniques. In this way, and together with a crew of brave men and women, Luffy immerses himself in an adventure that will pit him not only against other fearsome pirates, but also against the true villains of the story: the Marine forces and the World Government. .

Why you have to see One Piece

Naked eye, one piece it does not take much distance from the traditional adventures and the well-known path of the hero. However, the author Eiichiro Oda He managed to give this hackneyed scheme a series of nuances that made this proposal a unique piece in its style. Beyond the colorful battles and great powers, key elements in the construction of these stories, one piece it differentiates itself through two key aspects: on the one hand, the meticulous creation of a believable indestructible, in which anything can happen without being forced; and on the other hand, a very polished construction of heroes and villains, with whom it is impossible not to establish a strong empathy. The characters of one piece they are far from being flat creatures that fight on automatic pilot, but rather are beings that carry difficult childhoods and anguish that do not heal, but who also carry enthusiasm for a future of great promise.

Luffy and his companions

Luffy and his companions – Credits: @Captura

Luffy, the great hero of the saga, does not fight to be the strongest, but to protect his companions and build a world that erases injustice and in which there is social equity (it is not by chance that in one of the last episodes , promise a hungry girl that you will fight until everyone there can eat until their bellies hurt). But, in many cases, not only the heroes are the “good guys” of the plot, because one piece it also builds thick-layered villains, in many cases victims of unjust societies or abusive governments.

In this way, this fiction presents plots anchored in fantasy islands, in which echoes of a recognizable reality resonate, and in this way, Martin Luther King, human trafficking or slavery in the United States (not to mention the references to Roald Dahl or the work of Cervantes), are part of this enormous story.

A success in numbers and its arrival in Argentina

At just 22 years old, Eiichiro Oda began publishing one piece in 1997, a work that was going to last approximately five years. However, the good response from the Japanese public encouraged the author to expand his story, which is still published weekly in Japan today.

Like those river novels, which extend over several volumes, with characters that enter and leave the scene continuously, Oda shows a profound knowledge of his world and of the more than a thousand characters who star in these episodes. Without too many public appearances, and constituted as a Thomas Pynchon of the comic, Oda is devoted to the sole mission of completing this Sistine Chapel that is one piece, a work that makes him proud, but that also leads him to express that “authors can become slaves to their readers” (as he assured, in an open message he published a few days ago). And considering the numbers that this manga manages, the reason for that thought is understood.

one piece

One Piece – Credits: @Captura

From 1997 to the present, one piece It has published 105 volumes, with its subsequent 1,037 television episodes adapting that work. There are also just over fifty video games, a similar number of albums, about ten picture books, fifteen feature films, an upcoming live-action series produced by Netflixand endless articles on merchandise (which, through 2022, represents a profit of approximately five billion dollars). This prolific work became the most profitable manga in the history of Japan and it is estimated that, worldwide, books of one piece surpassed 500 million copies sold (surpassing, in that category, a true unbeatable such as dragon ball).

And as it happened in the rest of the world, one piece it also arrived in Argentina and became a phenomenon of remarkable growth. The manga began to be published in 2009 by the publisher larp, which in volume 42 discontinued its edition. Shortly thereafter, the seal Ivrea obtained that license, and began a split publication, on the one hand re-editing the manga from the beginning (it is currently at volume 32), and simultaneously continuing where Larp had left off (that edition is at volume 63). On the other hand, the animated series is complete on the streaming platform Crunchyrolland in HBO MAX and in Netflix The first few hundred chapters are listed. In this way, Argentina became another country in which Luffy established himself as one of the favorite characters for manga readers, giving rise to the premiere of a movie of the saga in theaters for the first time.

The importance of Network

As it happens with many films anchored in the continuity of an anime, perhaps Net be a mystery to those who do not know the world one piece. However, this self-contained story can be a good approach to this work. Ella Uta, a popular singer who has a history in common with Luffy, whom she met during her childhood, makes her debut in this feature film.

Net was a true milestone worldwide, in New York it had a launch that was announced taking over all the screens of Time Square, and in Japan it was positioned as the ninth most watched film in the history of that country (surpassing Avatar, among other Hollywood tanks). For all this, it is that Net It is a mandatory appointment for fans of this endearing saga, but also an invitation to the public that has not yet encountered this fascinating world. But even more important is that this premiere marks another milestone in the history of anime in Argentina, in its conquest of the big movie theaters.