From Dracula Mihawk’s (Steven John Ward) action-packed introduction to Luffy (Iñaki Godoy), Zoro (Mackenyu) & the gang’s backstories – One Piece season 1 is being praised as the first series to break the anime-to-life-action adaptation curse. So as expected, fans are raving over its best moment starting from Straw Hat Pirate’s first encounter with Toby in episode 1 and the events that transpire as they journey through the East Blue meeting new faces. Here’s a recap of the best moments according to the fans on social media.
With an impressive 8+ rating streak on IMDb for the entire 8 episodes and a 95% plus audience score on Rotten Tomatoes – it’s clear the live-action One Piece adaptation has turned out to be a massive hit. In fact, the series appears to have struck a chord with even the likes of newbie audiences who haven’t caught on to the long-running anime by Oda.
Kicking off with the East Blue Saga arc, the Straw Hat Pirates’ journey to find the Pirate King Gol D. Roger’s treasure is packed with adventure, comedy, heart & every necessary element to call it a critically & fan acclaimed TV series. The diversity & representation through the cast, right from One Piece episode 1 is one such element that has fans delighted and it begins with the casting of trans actor Morgan Davies to play Koby.
In terms of character introductions, Mihawk, the world’s greatest swordsman to ever live has folks arguing the Warlord’s entry in episode 5: Eat at Baratie! was significantly better compared to the anime & manga. Nonetheless, the live-action also pays tribute to the iconic moments like when the Gum Gum devil fruit eater meets the Pirate Hunter face-to-face at the naval base and finds him strung up in the yard. In fact, the exact sequence of Mihawk slicing Don Krieg’s ship apart shares a resemblance to the source material too.
One Piece live action IMDb rating. pic.twitter.com/sdvV0JcYfJ
— Lime Juice (@LordLimeJuice) September 7, 2023
I FOUND OUT KOBY IS PLAYED BY A TRANS ACTOR IN THE ONE PIECE LIVE ACTION AND IT MAKES ME SO HAPPY TO SEE A TRANS ACTOR IN SUCH A BIG ROLE WITHOUT THE CHARACTER BEING TRANS TOO!!
IM NOT CRYING YOU ARE pic.twitter.com/LF9j1Fk3Og
— Ezzydesu 📜🏳️🌈 (@Ezzydesu) September 1, 2023
Quite possibly the most action packed character introduction in the one piece live action! Perfect way to introduce mihawk imo https://t.co/ltBz8ijYCM
— Space Man (@Space_Man893) September 7, 2023
— af (@aibarisu) September 3, 2023
— ScopperGapan (@ScopperGapanEN) September 7, 2023
this scene had the perfect one piece humor lmfao pic.twitter.com/zKRZpnN0Av
— mar | shanks’ girl (@zoroIogist) September 7, 2023
The Sanji and Zeff farewell scene from the ONE PIECE live action makes me cry no matter how many times I watch it. The acting is impeccable with such real heartwrenching emotions and great music too. Peak cinema.#OPLA is so so good I can't stop thinking about it 😭 pic.twitter.com/9Fpq86rlhr
— ☆オードリーAudrey☆ (@aitaikimochi) September 3, 2023
The bounty showcase in the live action are so cold 🥶🔥 pic.twitter.com/IB95bEyHh3
— 𝙺𝚊𝚕︎⚡️ (@Abu_AlKhal_) September 3, 2023
enough time has passed, the one piece live action did mihawks introduction better than the manga pic.twitter.com/wIlHSiQFOW
— kareem (@kareemmpie) September 5, 2023
As someone going into this having never seen or really cared about anime ever i may not exactly be the best judge, but I just have to say that the One Piece live action show is really fucking good
I’m one episode in and immediately invested pic.twitter.com/JHXaxFhNI0
— Nicholas (@NicholasPas5) September 7, 2023
Kinda glad they didn’t include Usopp’s nose in the One Piece live action cos wtf is this pic.twitter.com/73cclgabq6
— Sarz 🔥 (@Sanjistars_) September 7, 2023
Sanji goodbye to zeff in the one piece live action was so emotional honestly my top 3 favorite scenes from this show❤️ pic.twitter.com/b3T5BSeP0o
— Ramen🍩 (@ramenretro1) September 6, 2023
Okay but Iñaki and Emily's performance was excellent. I love them ;_; pic.twitter.com/2oFXFDKoLg
— Joebear 💛 🐻 (@afakasisaina) September 4, 2023
Speaking of villainy pirates – Jeff Ward‘s Buggy has also made a lasting impression on the fandom. Fortunately, it’s clear that fans have not seen the last of the Joker-esque pirate after he manages to recover his body from Arlong thanks to Zoro and Sanji (Taz Skylar). The same applies to Alvida and fans aware of the source material are also expecting to see her go through an interesting transformation (hint: Devil fruit).
Coming to the dynamic between Roronoa Zoro & Sanji, the two pirates’ wholesome interactions is not short of praises, especially during their fight in the finale for Nami (Emily Rudd). Episode 8’s Arlong Park arc shows the two characters fighting off Arlong’s pirates whilst also engaging in their friendly banter is probably as accurate the series gets in adapting the anime.
Similarly, Luffy & Zoro’s friendship has also appealed to fans on a personal level. Some of the changes in the character portrayal have surprisingly received fans’ approval as well. For instance, the choice to rule out Usopp’s (Jacob Romero) elongated nose is one of them. In addition, race-swapping Nami’s sister Nojiko (Chioma Antoinette Umeala) -although it initially received flak, fans of the show have grown fond of her casting.
Meanwhile, some of the avid One Piece fans have found characters who went unnoticed like Woop Slap. In the anime, he is revealed to be the Mayor of the town where the young Straw Hat Pirate used to reside.
Woop Slap in the One Piece Live Action! pic.twitter.com/PY8SM5Yf2r
— Artur – Library of Ohara (@newworldartur) September 5, 2023
Man…finished episode 7 with my wife. @emilysteaparty had me tearing up in this scene. All of you have just nailed the characters down. Amazing stuff, hoping for a season 2 and beyond. #OnePiece #OnePieceLiveAction pic.twitter.com/CmfuDujLxe
— Encrypt (@TheEncrypt) September 8, 2023
For me personally, episode 7 stands out as the peak of the #OnePieceNetflix live action.
As a long term fan, Nami's backstory & Arlong Park mean a lot to me as the moment that solidified my love for One Piece.
The perfect cocktail of nostalgia, raw emotion, & phenomenal acting. pic.twitter.com/yQxpKgd8Y7
— Typical Joe (@3SkullJoe) September 2, 2023
Sanji’s combo with him yelling out the attack names is easily my favourite scene from One Piece live action, I need more of that in season 2, the fight against Bon Clay is gonna be peak, Taz is so perfect in the role, I’m obsessed 😭 pic.twitter.com/zyVvjh4yjf
— Xena🍊 (@XenaQueen_) September 4, 2023
The One Piece live action isn't perfect, but it did a great job capturing many 'iconic' scenes.
What did you guys think about it ? 👇 pic.twitter.com/dNQkqhXxB5
— Spike 🌵 (@SpikePersona) September 7, 2023
BUGGY THE CLOWN OF ONE PIECE LIVE ACTION FAME!!!!!! I!!! NEED!!!! YOU!!!!!!! pic.twitter.com/n98TEN4DOZ
— sleepy mj 🐁 (@fraldariius) September 1, 2023
— One Piece Daily (@opdaiIy) August 31, 2023
Buggy is strangely hot in OPLA😅 https://t.co/IS5idinafe
— Bella (@GuardianofJp) September 4, 2023
buggy having a beef with sanji and zoro is so hilarious to me 😭😭😭 pic.twitter.com/DkWB3gpsJ5
— andi 🍋 ceo of sanji (@sanjiluvbot) September 3, 2023
Live Action Buggy is incredible and amazingly, one of my favorite characters in the adaptation. He is such a bastard! https://t.co/6nkxUfvS7b
— Jacob Davison (@JacobDavison_) September 3, 2023
Tell someone who’s only ever consumed one piece via the live action this guy becomes one of the top 4 most influential pirates in the world pic.twitter.com/Kymk8dxrll
— Geo (@Geo_AW) September 7, 2023
I like how OPLA highlights Zoro’s bounty hunting days:
– Zoro being the most feared Pirate Hunter in East Blue
– Alvida’s fear of Zoro
– Axe Hang Morgan respect of Zoro & wanting him to join
– Cabaji’s history w/Zoro eg.killing his brother
– Baroque works wanting to recruit Zoro
— FlexStyle (@Flexstylexx) September 1, 2023
— Bella (@GuardianofJp) September 3, 2023
It should be noted the visual spectacle is far from the only selling point of OPLA. Scenes like the moment when Sanji departs Baratie with an emotional goodbye to Zeff (Craig Fairbrass) in episode 6. Or best of all, episode 7: The Girl with the Sawfish Tattoo’s teary cliffhanger when Nami breaks down and finally asks for Luffy’s Help. The young Pirate placing his Straw Hat on Nami’s head has viewers going through a rollercoaster of emotions while admiring its throwback to when Shanks (Peter Gadiot) did the same to the young monkey.
All in all, it’s fair to say the chemistry between the actors playing the Straw Hat Pirates has done wonders in helping season 1 succeed. With Arlong defeated and Luffy finally convincing his grandpa Vice Admiral Garp (Vincent Regan) to quit tailing him – the straw hat pirates’ journey to the Grand Line sets off though anime fans are rather looking forward to Luffy’s encounter with other potential villains (stronger than Buggy and Arlong) before finding the treasure.
Fortunately, the script for One Piece season 2 has been penned and once Hollywood’s Actors & WGA strike comes to a halt – Netflix will proceed with its production. However, its unclear when exactly season 2 would arrive, probably sometime in 2025.
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