It’s been some time since steev covered the One Piece manga here on Anivision. As this most recent arc reaches its conclusion and I’ve been covering the OP anime over at Metanorn, I’ve decided on my own to take the mantle of covering the manga.
At the end of chapter 648, Luffy asked Jinbei to join his crew. I was surprised to see this happen and was quite curious of what his response would be. If Jinbei joins, he’d become the 10th member of the One Piece crew, would immediately be ranked in the Top 4 of the Mugiwara Strength polls and be kind of a rare straight (comedically) fishman on the Thousand Sunny. Robin is the closest to that type, but has shown a thrill for scaring her nakama just for jokes. All of the Strawhats have their unique and funny quirks, but in the long time that we’ve gotten to know Jinbei, he hasn’t shown much of anything. Most characters that join the crew get a flashback during the arc, but Jinbei’s story was told mainly through the perspectives of Fisher Tiger and Otohime. All of this doesn’t quite sell me on the idea of Jinbei accepting.
And so Jinbei requests that Luffy offer him the job at a later time. The Strawhats would’ve gotten an exponential power boost that quite honestly seemed too good to be true, and I expected a lot of what went into Jinbei’s answer to weigh heavily on the aftermath of what just happened in Fishman Island. He will be very important to Fishman Island picking itself back up after a big battle in which they were able to capture both Hodi and Vander Decken, but I very much like the idea that one day he would like to be a crew member. After Ace’s death, it is a responsibility of Jinbei to watch over Luffy. Sometime in the far future when Luffy is maybe near death and water is close by, I’ll be hoping that Jinbei jumps out and saves him. It will be epic, but it will be likely a way’s off. It’s also a little cool how committed to Luffy the other crew members are, more fully accepting of Luffy’s ideal of hiring him, although they already knew he was a good fishman and an ex-Warlord.
With the main action and big plot reveal which I’ll address later having been shown, this arc is nearing its end. It was a fun arc, and not too long which I like. The Strawhats were able to show off some of their awesome new powers (I was excited when Sanji Skywalk’d since steev teased it to me) while still having believable struggles with the enemy, primarily Luffy vs. Hodi. Fishman Island was a very detailed world in the manga and I’m anxious to see it in anime form with a lot of bright tones and hot mermaids. Sanji turning to stone should be hilarious, and I believe it is high time that he gets taken out of the land of Mermaids; the guy’s had his fun and will be lucky to make it out alive.
This adds meaning to what Neptune said the previous chapter when he mentioned something about the power that can destroy the world. Robin had actually read about this all the way back on Skypiea, and now this puts the Strawhats in a very unsettling position having found the first of two known ancient weapons (Pluton’s whereabouts still unknown). It doesn’t seem like many people outside of Neptune, Robin and the Strawhats know this, but just the fear alone that somebody else will be able to figure out what Shirahoshi is and find her really brings about a need to put Shirahoshi in witness protection.