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One Piece Episode #963 Anime Review

4 min read
One Piece makes for a decent episode this time around for a couple of very simple reasons.
© Eiichiro Oda / Shueisha · Fuji Television · Toei Animation

“Oden’s Determination! Whitebeard’s Test!”

What They Say:
Whitebeard and his crew dock at one of the ports in the Land of Wano with their broken ship and the news excites Oden. He runs to the port and asks Whitebeard to let him get on board the ship but the request is rejected. When the ship’s repairs are complete, Whitebeard tries to sneak out of the country, but he finds Oden tagging along.

The Review:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
One Piece gets more into an area that will make fans happy as we get some quality Whitebeard time. It’s been forever since I really remember dealing with the character – the curse of almost a thousand episodes, quite frankly – and I know I lost the plot along the way when it comes to the character in how their storyline goes. But I always enjoyed the character from the material I remember of them so having him and his mustache here is certainly a delight not just because it’s distinctive in overall design but there’s a good personality to work with and a voice actor that really embraces what Whitebeard is all about.

The episode delivers a lot of good action at the start since we get Whitebeard and his crew at Wano and Oden has been looking for a challenge like this for a long time. Oden’s definitely high on the power rankings from what I’ve seen but there’s something about Whitebeard and a couple of others that just puts them in a different class at later points in their careers. That said, it’s a lot of fun to watch them go at it here and for Oden to get a challenge that he can’t quite beat at the moment, which pushes him further. And it’s a delight to watch with the animation quality here as there are some really strong sequences within it that sell the power levels at work here. Between that and having a bunch of the locals step up to push back on Whitebeard, there’s a good bit going on – even if the people of Wano are shocked by his reveal that he wants to see the world and sail the seas.

As time moves forward, we get Whitebeard and his crew getting the ship all set to sail with its repairs but they also have to deal with how bad Oden gets in the way he pretty much begs to hit the open sea. It’s like a kid trying to sneak out at times as well, since he’s been surrounded by people that treat things very seriously while he just wants to live his life. It’s got the right air of comedy about it but it also keeps to a serious side as well, especially as Oden makes a real play to get on board and Whitebeard has been refusing him continually, right up until this point as well. Whitebeard’s in the right here in that Oden is just too dangerous, too much of a wildcard, to include with his pirate family. But even then he gives him a chance to prove himself and that’s all that Oden needs being the type that he is. Hell, the harder the challenge the more he’s up for it.

In Summary:
One Piece makes for a decent episode this time around for a couple of very simple reasons. The fight with Whitebeard goes well because of our history with him and that provides for some extended context in addition to just being a well-done fight with some really good animation. Oden’s time trying to sneak out and/or begging and pleading to join Whitebeard’s crew is a lot of fun as well as it reminds him just how controlled he is by everyone else when he really just wants to roam free. It’s a tough place for the character to be in and the struggle is real for him with so many things pulling at him. There’s a good setup for what’s to come next and that’s going to keep things interesting for a little bit, hopefully.

Grade: B-

Streamed By: Crunchyroll

Review Equipment:
Sony KDL70R550A 70″ LED 1080P HDTV, Apple TV via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.

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