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One Piece – Season Two: Fifth Voyage (a J!-ENT Anime DVD Review)

January 27, 2010 by  



Another thrilling, action packed volume of “One Piece”!   The long awaited battle between the Straw Hat Pirates versus Baroque Works begins!

Image courtesy of © 1999 Toei Animation Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

DVD TITLE: One Piece – Season Two: Fifth Voyage

DURATION: Episodes 104-116 (320 minutes, 2 DVD’s)

DVD INFORMATION: 4:3, Engish 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound, English and Japanese stereo

COMPANY: FUNimation Entertainment

RATED: TV 14

Release Date: January 19, 2010

Originally created by Eiichiro Oda

Directed by Hiroaki Miyamoto, Konosuke Uda, Munehisa Sakai

Series Composition by Hirohiko Uesaka

Script by Hirohiko Uesaka, Hiroshi Hashimoto, Junki Takegami, Michiru Shimada, Naoki Koga, Ryota Yamaguchi, Suminori Takegami, Yoshiyuki Suga

Music by Kouhei Tanaka, Shiroh Hamaguchi

Character Design by Kazuya Hisada, Noboru Koizumi

Animation by TAP

Animation Production by Toei Animation

Featuring the following voice talent:

Mayumi Tanaka/Colleen Clinkenbeard as Monkey D. Luffy

Misa Watanabe/Caitlin Glass as Vivi Nefertari

Akemi Okamura/Luci Christian as Nami

Hiroaki Hirata/Eric Vale as Sanji

Ikue Ohtani/Brina Palencia as Tony Tony Chopper

Kappei Yamaguchi/Sonny Strait as Usopp

Kazuki Yao/Barry Yandell as Mr. 2 Bon Clay

Kazuya Nakai/Christopher R. Sabat as Roronoa Zoro

Ryuzaburo Otomo/John Swasey as Sir Crocodile/Mr. O

Yuriko Yamaguchi/Stephanie Yong as Nico Robin/Miss All-Sunday

Bin Simada/Andy Mullins as Wapol

Nobuyuki Hiyama/Duncann Brannan as Mr. 3

The Straw Hats crossed a desert to defend the kingdom of Alabasta, but the real adventure is about to begin! Crocodile and his army of assassins set their sights on King Cobra’s empire, Luffy and his mates get locked in the clink, and a regal imposter leads Vivi’s people towards a bloody uprising. Lucky for Luffy, Sanji and Chopper are still on the loose, and they’ve got a plan to spring their captain from the jaws of ravenous reptiles!

While Princess Vivi struggles with the most difficult decision of her life, Monkey D. Luffy takes on the dastardly Crocodile in a deadly desert showdown!

Exciting, action-packed and just all out fun! One of my favorite storylines of the “One Piece” anime series makes its way to DVD!

“ONE PIECE” is a popular anime series based on the popular manga series serialized in Shonen Jump by Eiichiro Oda. Suffice to say, “ONE PIECE” is the highest selling manga for Weekly Shonen Jump and its popularity has extended to various anime (via the TV series, OVA and films) and video games in America and also worldwide. The series is so popular, the episode count currently in Japan is over 400 episodes and despite receiving a heavily edited version in North America via 4Kids Entertainment earlier on, FUNimation Entertainment began releasing the original, uncut versions since the May of 2008 with a total of 13 episodes per volume.

“ONE PIECE” is an adventure anime about a 17-year-old boy named Monkey D. Luffy who gained enormous strength (and stretching abilities) after eating a magical demon fruit. He eventually teams up with a group of pirates and have the name “The Straw Hats”. Luffy’s driven to one day obtain the most sought out treasure known as “One Piece” and eventually become the King of the Pirates.

The Straw Hat Pirates consists of:

Monkey D. Luffy – A 17-year-old guy who is the captain of the Straw Hat Pirates and dreams to be a pirate king by getting his hands on the “ONE PIECE” artifact. When he was young, he accidentally ate a devil fruit which made his body rubbery and can stretch and blow up. An airhead of sorts, loves to eat but always believes and fights for his friends.

Roronoa Zoro – A 19-year-old skilled swordsman. A skilled and very strong fighter. Wants to be the greatest swordsman in the world.

Nami – The navigator of the group. The main female crew member and really good at weapons.

Usopp – A 17-year-old marksman. A talented inventor and artistic. Known by his long nose, his marksmanship with slingshots and weapons are great.

Sanji – The chef of the crew. A skilled fighter that uses only kicks in battle and is passionate towards Nami.

Tony Tony Chopper – A reindeer with a blue nose. Ate a devil fruit known as human-human fruit which makes him human in someways but keeping his reindeer look. Able to speak to humans, walk upright and also able to have transformations to become a huge beast. But his talent is his medical skills as he was trained by the Doctrine to become a doctor. Has very low self-confidence because he had been treated badly not only by his kind but also by humans and has not really had a friend but the Doctor and Doctrine.

Vivi Nefertari – The Princess of Alabasta and trying to infiltrate Baroque Works and find out who the leader is. She and her duck Carue join the Straw Hat Pirates and are on adventure to get back to Alabasta.

Carue – A duck like animal who understands what the crew are talking about and although used by Vivi and others to ride on, Carue is also protective of Vivi and the others.

Characters that play a part in the Alibasta Storyline:

Baroque Works – An undercover criminal organization ran by Crocodile (aka Mr. 0) who is intent to overthrow the government of Alabasta (where Vivi is from).

Sir Crocodile – Leader of Baroque Works. Has the villages in Alabsta thinking he’s there to help them but in truth, he uses the organization for his plans to overthrow the Alabasta government. Known as Mr. 0 and very powerful and has the ability to manipulate sand.

Mr. 1 Das Bones – The second runner up who of Baroque Works who is powerful and deadly. Has the ability to turn any part of his body to a steel blade. Works with Miss Doublefinger (who can turn her body into spikes).

Mr. 2 Bon Clay – A transvestite who has the power to touch anyone and take on their identity. Also, a skilled martial artist.

Mr. 3 – The third in line at Baroque Works who can manipulate his body to wax and produce a large amount of it.  The wax can harden itself and become as strong as steel.  Works with Miss Goldenweek.

Miss All-Sunday/Nico Robin – The Vice President of Baroque Works.

Portgas D. “Fire Fist” Ace – Luffy’s older brother who has the power to turn his body into fire and joins the Straw Hat Pirates during their venture through the desert of Alabasta.

Captain Smoker – A Marine officer who loves cigars. He has the ability to manipulate smoke and is after the Straw Hat Pirates.

Tashigi – A Marine officer and Smoker’s second in command. Her goal is to capture Zorro and take his swords.

In “One Piece – Season Two: Fifth Voyage”, the group are in the country of Alibasta and have made their way to where Crocodile is.  But in order to get to him, each member of the Straw Pirates must take on a member of the Baroque Works.  Leading up to a one on one showdown between Luffy and Crocodile.

The “ONE PIECE – Season Two: Fifth Voyage” comes with episodes 104-116 on two DVD discs. Here are the spoiler-less summaries of each episode:

DISC 1:

  • EPISODE 104 – Luffy vs. Vivi! The Tearful Vow to Put Friends on the Line! – Vivi and Luffy get into a disagreement with how to stop the rebel army, leading the two to get into a fight with each other.
  • EPISODE 105 – The Battlefront of Alabasta! Rainbase, the City of Dreams! – When the group reaches Rain Base to prepare for battle, Smoker and Tashigi are there waiting for them.
  • EPISODE 106 – The Trap of Certain Defeat! Storming Raindinners! – Crocodile traps the Straw Hat Pirates and Smoker.
  • EPISODE 107 – Operation Utopia Commences! The Swell of Rebellion Stirs! – Baroque Works kidnaps the King of Alabasta.
  • EPISODE 108 – The Terrifying Banana Gators and Mr. Prince – With Luffy and a few of the crew trapped with Smoker, Crocodile sends the banana gators to kill them.
  • EPISODE 109 – The Key to a Great Comeback Escape! The Wax-Wax Ball! – Chopper and Sanji work on a plan to save the group and Smoker from the banana gators.
  • EPISODE 110 – Merciless Mortal Combat! Luffy vs. Crocodile! – The group is en route to Alabarna for their big battle, meanwhile Luffy takes on Crocodile.

DISC 2:

  • EPISODE 111 – Dash for a Miracle! Alabasta Animal Land! – Luffy is near death but a surprising character saves him.
  • EPISODE 112 – Rebel Army vs. Royal Army! Showdown at Alabarna! – The battle and revolution begins!
  • EPISODE 113 – Alubarna Grieves! The Fierce Captain Karoo! – Vivia tries to stop the rebel army but is thwarted by Mr. 2 Bon Clay.  Usopp and Chopper versus Mr. 4 and the Mole lady – Miss Merry Christmas.
  • EPISODE 114 – Sworn on a Friend’s Dream! The Battle of Molehill, Block 4! – Continuing the battle between Usopp and Chopper versus the Mole lady and Mr. 4.
  • EPISODE 115 – Big Opening Day Today! The Copy-Copy Montage! – Sanji versus Mr. 2 Bon Clay.
  • EPISODE 116 – Transformed into Nami!  Bon Clay’s rapid Fire Baller Kenpo! – Continuing the fight between Sanji and Mr. 2 Bon Clay.  Vivi confronts Crocodile.

VIDEO & AUDIO:

For most television series, because they are created nearly before they are aired on television, unlike film and OVA’s, there typically is not much detail involved in a Japanese animated television series. “ONE PIECE” is probably one of those rare exceptions in that it has really cool character designs and very detailed artistic backgrounds.

The anime series is presented in standard 4:3 definition but for a television series, “ONE PIECE” sports cool and unique character designs and beautifully painted artistic backgrounds. Definitely one of the better looking anime series that has remained consistent and has not downgraded since it first aired on television. Character designer Kazuya Hisada (who worked on the “Dragon Ball” and “Dragon Ball GT” series) and Noboru Koizumi (who worked on “Giant Robo”, “Dragon Ball GT” and “Tenchi Universe”) have been very good of capturing “One Piece” creator Eiichiro Oda’s unique style.

As for the audio, the series is presented in English 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound, English Stereo and Japanese Stereo. Of course, the English 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound is the better audio choice to listen to, although one who has a receiver that can set their audio to all channels can definitely enjoy the Japanese stereo track as well. But both audio tracks are done very well and I have to admit that “ONE PIECE” has one of the most solid English dub tracks for an anime TV series. Very well done on both audio tracks but again, have been very impressed by the voice talent for the series thus far.

Subtitles are in English.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

ONE PIECE – Season Two: Fifth Voyage” comes with the following special features:

DISC 2:

  • Audio Commentary for 114 – Sworn on a Friend’s Dream! The Battle of Molehill, Block 4 – Featuring audio commentary with ADR Director Jason Grundy, Sonny Strait (Usopp) and Wendy Powell (Miss Merry Christmas).
  • Textless Songs – Textless Songs for the opening song “Believe” by folder5 and the closing song “Shouchinosuke”.
  • Trailers – FUNimation Entertainment trailers

I absolutely love “ONE PIECE”. The characters, the action, the involving and well-written storylines and of course, the wonderful voice work via Japanese and also the English dub tracks and the refreshing and unique artwork.  But what I enjoyed the most about “One Piece – Season Two: Fifth Voyage” is that it has literally been a long stretch between the introduction of Vivi, the trip to Alabasta and now this volume which begins the battle between the Straw Hat Pirates versus Crocodile and Baroque Works.

Although nearly every volume has its share of action, this time around the opponents are deadlier than ever before.  Before it was a team taking on various opponents but now we have one-on-one battles especially an exciting first battle between Luffy and Crocodile.  With the events that are featured in “One Piece – Season Two: Fifth Voyage”, for those who have seen the movie “ONE PIECE MOVIE 8: THE DESERT PRINCESS AND THE PIRATES – Adventures in Alabasta” will be familiar between two of the battles that take place in this volume.  But of course, the television series features more of the actual battle.

So, for those who have kept up with the adventure to Alabasta will be happy with this volume as the war in Alabasta and the battle between Crocodile and his henchman versus the Straw Hat Pirates finally begins.

Overall, “ONE PIECE” continues to be a fantastic anime series that has a great combination of humor, action, artwork, great voice acting and cool animation. Another thrilling, action-packed volume that is highly recommended!






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