The war against Emperor Kaido and his crew rages on! The whole island is the scene of multiple clashes of rare violence, no one is spared and everyone has a role to play in this endless struggle! And as his comrades attempt to defeat Kaido’s lieutenants, Luffy regains his strength and searches for a way to return to face the Sea Emperor!
I know I’m going to get fired up again, since it seems like heresy not to find each One Piece volume better than the last, that objectivity is a rare commodity among its most hardcore fans…but let’s be honest : how long! How heavy! When will this arc finally end?
Not much to say about this volume, except that it’s generally the same as the previous one! We follow multiple confrontations in a more messy situation than ever, even in the fighting it’s a mess since the author changes point of interest and characters every two pages!
In terms of narration, it is clear that quickly alternating points of view adds to the effect of confusion desired by the author, where others (like Mashima for example), take the time to conclude a confrontation before linger on the next one, even though these are happening in parallel. Where we gain in readability we lose it in realism… each author positions himself on it as he sees fit, and Oda is a past master in the art of managing this growing confusion arc after arc. But it’s also impressively heavy, so much so that for me the pleasure of reading took quite a hit!
I don’t even want to specifically detail what we find in this volume, we certainly have the pleasure of finding characters left behind for a while, such as Franky or Brook, or even Jinbe…to be honest the whole crew here is going to shine at one point or another, with Kaido’s various lieutenants biting the dust one after another, only to end up with the help of a character who is experiencing a great evolution, Luffy finds himself facing Kaido again…we can then assume (hope) that we are finally approaching the final confrontation which will come to close this arc IN-TER-MI-NA-BLE!!!!!
In passing, we can note the evocation of a legend mentioning an elected official…it is clear that Oda is planting the seeds of a future intervention / evolution which for once will not come out of nowhere…but almost.
We are therefore waiting to see what awaits us afterwards, we can hope to see things speed up to finally move on to something else…in the meantime all this could have been done with half as many chapters without us lose more!