One Piece Volume 8

In heaven all the interesting people are missing.” – Friedrich Nietzsche. 

Now it has to be said from the outset that most of this collection is filler. However, as filler goes, it is pretty good.

It begins with the conclusion of the “Skypiea” storyline. The evil Eneru is planning to use his electrical powers to destroy the land from a gigantic flying ship “Deathpiea”. However, Luffy is planning to stop him and has at least one important advantage: because Luffy is made out of rubber, he cannot conduct Eneru’s electricity. This doesn’t stop Eneru from attacking the captain in other ways.

The rest of the crew are in various states of health and ability. Nami is on Deathpiea and trying to help Luffy; Sanji and Ussop wake up from their own recent attack and go out to help Luffy. The rest are in a pretty bad state of health. Luffy is however not going to let anything stop him – even if he does end up with a massive ball of metal encasing his arm.

After the events of Skypiea, the Straw Hat Pirates return to the Blue Sea. But when they land, they find that they have crashed into Navarone, one of the most heavily fortified marine bases around. The marines attempt to capture the rest of the crew, who have split up to protect themselves: Luffy and Sanji disguise themselves as marine cooks and go to work in the kitchen (Sanji cooks, Luffy tastes); Chopper and Nami help a doctor who has a problem with blood and guts; and Nico Robin finds, attacks and disguises herself as a visiting inspector. 

As stated, there is quite a bit of filler. The story about the marines does not appear in the manga, but despite this it is still an entertaining tale. For quite a bit the action is slightly more subtle than normal which makes for an interesting change, but then again there is still plenty of the over-the-top chaos that fans know and expect.

The worst bit of filler is in the Skypiea plot, where there are three episodes which are flashbacks telling the story of Noland the Liar and his trip to Skypiea 400 years beforehand. It is dull because when it comes to One Piece, and indeed just about any series, you want to see the main characters. All this background information is not really needed. 

In terms of extras, once again there are textless opening and closing, along with some episode commentaries.

If there is one major development, apart from the end of one of the big story arcs, it is that Luffy announces that the next member of their crew should be a shipwright.

7 / 10

Ian Wolf

Ian works as an anime and manga critic for Anime UK News, and is also the manga critic for MyM Magazine. Outside of anime, he also is the editor of On The Box, data specialist for the British Comedy Guide, is QI's most pedantic viewer, has written questions for both The Wall and Richard Osman's House of Games, and has been a contestant on Mastermind.

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