Will Netflix’s live action One Piece adaptation live up to expectations?

Tomorrow, Netflix’s much anticipated live action One Piece adaptation will be released.  One Piece is the best selling manga series of all time written by Eiichiro Oda. 

The most important part of any live action series is making sure the cast can encapsulate the looks of their on page counterparts. 

Iñaki Godoy plays Luffy as he gathers a ragtag crew of Straw Hat pirates-to-be: swordsman Roronoa Zoro (Mackenyu), thief Nami (Emily Rudd), marksman Usopp (Jacob Romero), and chef Sanji (Taz Skylar).

Each actor has been cast well judging from the trailers with everyone seeming to capture the look and personalities of each character, although some parts of the characters designs had to be changed for the live action such as Usopp’s huge nose and Sanji’s twirling eyebrows as this may put off potential new viewers of One Piece.

Oda has always wanted to bring all of the character designs he’s dreamt up in his 25 year long run publishing One Piece to the page and as such the live action adaption will struggle slightly with specific characters. One such character is Arlong the villainous Fishman. Judging from the trailers he doesn’t quite have the same intimidating look that he managed to have in the manga, this is in part because of the choice to not use CGI animated Fishmen meaning that the characters won’t be able to embody the same level of physical intimidation. Arlong’s nose also can be a little bit jarring to those familiar with One Piece as it looks a little bit ridiculous when brought to life but I think after a while it may settle a bit more and become less abrasive to look at.  


This new series will be adapting the first 100 chapters of the One Piece manga known as the “East Blue” saga. The saga introduces the first 5 Strawhat Pirates, Luffy, Zoro, Nami, Usopp and Sanji as they battle their way across the East Blue sea to try and get to the Grand Line to begin their journey towards the ultimate treasure left behind by the Pirate King Gol D. Roger known as the One Piece. New viewers can expect some emotional highs at certain points within this first season as it looks as though it will largely be following the same story as the manga. Fans of One Piece will notice minor changes from the trailers such as the increased presence of Vice-Admiral Garp and the appearance of Fishmen in the Baratie arc.

Some fans of One Piece are approaching the new series with cautious optimism due to a poor history of live action anime adaptions, however there is reasons to believe this will be different as it is evident to see that everyone involved in the project from the cast and behind the scenes crew seems to be deeply passionate for One Piece, this can be seen through excitement in interviews and the thought and care that has gone into the elaborate set designs that have faithfully brought to life the world of One Piece. Oda himself is meant to have been involved a fair amount with the production of this series and as he has always been involved with the anime production of One Piece this can be seen as a good sign that the series should be as good as its anime and manga counterparts.

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