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The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

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COLUMN: Becoming the King of Pirates

COLUMN%3A+Becoming+the+King+of+Pirates
Ashanti Thomas

During the summer of 2022, I started watching the anime “One Piece.” Now if you are unaware of this anime, it follows the story of Monkey D. Luffy, who dreams of becoming the King of the Pirates. He sails across the sea in search of new members for his crew, the Straw Hat Pirates, to help in obtaining the One Piece.   

You see, if you find the hidden treasure, the One Piece, it is said you will become the King of the Pirates. This started the Great Pirate Era as said in the show’s introduction and thousands of pirates sailed in search of the treasure to earn the title.  

I started this anime in July to be specific and since I have made it 700 episodes in. I know what you may be thinking, what do you mean “only” 700 episodes in. As of September 26th, 2023, there are 1,077 episodes and it still is not done.

This anime was first created on July 22nd, 1997, and has continued for 26 years and 20 seasons. Reports say that even at over 1,000 episodes, it is not close to be finished.  

I can say, this show is very much a commitment. I have watched quite a lot of anime in my time, I started around 8th grade when a lot of my friends watched it, so I gave in. Sadly, my college years were not filled with watching anime in any capacity.  

I tend to be one of those anime watchers who watches subs which means the original Japanese audio. It is very hard to read subtitles on a show in a language you do not speak when you are trying to write a paper.  

“One Piece” was the first anime I watched in college, and it has completely changed how I watch anime now.  Yes, the original audio voice actors are good, but the English audio holds so many more jokes, and it is easier to pay more attention to the visuals.  

“One Piece” is a stunning anime, and it has been so interesting to watch the animation style from episode 1 grow and get smoother when getting to episode 700. Having the ability to be able to actually watch the fight animations without having to stare at the bottom of the screen was a game changer.  

Do not get me wrong though, I still have subtitles on and that is simply for the fact I feel I can hear it better if I can see the words too. I know, a silly philosophy, but I swear it helps.  

Again, this anime is not for the weak, there are so many episodes to watch but I have to be honest dear reader. It is worth it. I have laughed, I have cried, I have gotten angry, I have sat there for full days just watching this group of pirates travel across the world looking for treasure and punching people in the face.  

I almost forgot one of the most important parts. In this world, people can eat special fruits that give them special powers.

These are called Devil Fruits and the main character, Luffy, ate the Gomu Gomu no Mi, also known as the Gum Gum Fruit. This gave him the special power of being able to stretch like rubber.  

There are some complications with this as anyone who eats a Devil Fruit can no longer swim, which is a problem for pirates who literally sail through water.

Another example is Buggy the Clown, another pirate who ate the Chop Chop fruit which allows him to be able to split his body apart and reassemble whenever he wants.  

I bring him up for the sole reason that if you have been on TikTok in the past month, you have seen this clown. The reason? Recently, the live-action version of “One Piece” came out in August on Netflix. Audiences are in love with Buggy the Clown. Yes, a clown. 

If you are interested in seeing “One Piece” but do not want to watch the anime or watch 1000+ episodes, which I recommend you do, watch the live-action. It covers roughly around 50 anime episodes in only 8 hours.

Though, they do change the story up a little bit and obviously cut some things up, so I still say watch the anime.  

Honestly, “One Piece,” is a fantastic anime and one that I am so glad I started. So, if you want to dip your toe into the adventures of the Straw Hat Pirates or even anime in general, sit down and watch some “One Piece.”

Kierstyn Budz can be reached at [email protected] or 217-581-2812. 

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About the Contributors
Kierstyn Budz
Kierstyn Budz, Columnist
Kierstyn Budz is a senior English major. This is her first year at The News. 
Ashanti Thomas
Ashanti Thomas, Photographer
Ashanti Thomas is a senior digital media major. She previously served as photo editor and assistant photo editor at The News.

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