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One Piece: Baroque Works (Vol. 13-15 – Omnibus Edition) by Eiichiro Oda (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

February 18, 2013 by  



The Straw Hat Pirates vs. Baroque Works! The introduction of Ms. All Sunday (Nico Robin) and the beginning of the Alabasta arc.  Action-packed and a lot of fun, “One Piece: Baroque Works (Vol. 13-15 – Omnibus Edition)” is highly recommended!

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Image courtesy of © 1997 Eiichiro Oda. All Rights Reserved.

MANGA TITLE: One Piece: Baroque Works (Vol. 13-15 – Omnibus Edition)

STORY AND ART BY: Eiichiro Oda (尾田 栄一郎)

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: Shueisha, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC

RATED: T for Older Teen

Available on February 5, 2013

As a child, Monkey D. Luffy dreamed of becoming King of the Pirates. But his life changed when he accidentally gained the power to stretch like rubber…at the cost of never being able to swim again! Years later, Luffy sets off in search of the “One Piece,” said to be the greatest treasure in the world…

The adventure continues as Princess Vivi and Carue join the Straw Pirates in an adventure to return the princess back to Alabasta (and hopefully get some reward).  But first, the crew needs to pass through a certain island that they have been warned about by Miss All Sunday, a member of the evil Baroque Works.  What they discover at this island will surprise the Straw Hat Pirates and unknown to them, members of the Baroque Works are after them.

As the Straw Hats Pirates make their way to bring Vivi back to Alabasta, find out what happens when the Straw Hat Pirates take on Baroque Works in “One Piece: Baroque Works (Vol. 13-15 – Omnibus Edition)”.

What is “One Piece”?

“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 540 episodes, one of the longest running anime series in Japan.

“ONE PIECE” is an adventure anime about a young man 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.

In volume 13, Roronoa Zora takes on Baroque Works members No. 9 and Ms. Wednesday.  But as Zoro easily beats them, Mr. 5 and Ms. Valentine arrive to take down No. 9 and Ms. Wednesday, who is revealed to be Vivi Nefeltari, the princess of Alabasta.

She and her assistant infiltrated Baroque Works to find out who is responsible in creating an uprising in her home country.

But with Baroque Works now knowing the truth about Vivi, No. 9 pleads with Nami and Zoro to take Vivi back to Alabasta and if they do, they will get a reward.  And Nami always the type to not say no to money or treasure, takes the job.

This leads to a battle between The Straw Hat Pirates vs. Baroque Works.

After a skirmish with Mr. 5 and Ms. Valentine, the group escape and head out to Alabasta but end up visiting an island where dinosaurs and two giants named Dorry and Broggy live.

In volume 14, the group establish a friendship over the two giant rivals but when Baroque Works puts exploding ale in Dorry’s drink, Dorry thinks it is the fault of the Straw Hat Pirates, leading to a battle between Luffy and Dorry.  Meanwhile,  Baroque Works have followed the group to an island and another battle between the Straw Hat Pirates Zoro, Nami and Vivi and Mr. 5 and Ms. Valentine begins. Meanwhile, Luffy, Usopp and Carue take on No. 3 and Ms. Golden Week.

In volume 15, the group manage to leave the island but as they travel to Alabasta, Nami catches some sort of sickness and with a temperature of 104 degrees, the group has no choice but to head to the nearest island and this time, they visit the cold, snow island known as Drum Island in search for a doctor.  But will the dictator of the island, Wapol, help them find one?

The Straw Hat Pirates consists of:

Monkey D. Luffy – The young 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 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 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.

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.

With the release of “One Piece: Baroque Works (Vol. 13-15 – Omnibus Edition)”, the Alabasta arc is my favorite earlier storylines of “One Piece” thus far.

In volume 13 and 14, you get Princess Vivi and Carue joining the crew, viewers get to see Miss Sunday (Nico Robin) for the first time confronting the gang, battle between the two giants Dorry and Broggy but most of all, the continuing battle between the Straw Hat Pirates and Baroque Works.  And the battle against #3 and #5 was very entertaining and well-written.  So, you can definitely expect a lot of action with this volume alone!

Also, you get to meet Ms. All Sunday, Baroque Works Vice President and Supreme Commander…who will play a major part in the future of The Straw Hat Pirates, but with the name…Nico Robin.

In volume 15, the adventure continues as the Straw Hat Gang plan to go to Alabasta to return Princess Vivi and Carue back to her land.  The problem is that when the gang fought from their last battle in the island, Nami was bitten by a bug and now she is growing sicker and sicker by the day.  Worried about her health and the fact that she may die without medical care, the group knows they need to stop at an island and find a doctor for her.

So, the gang end up in the frosty island known as Drum Island who is run by a dictator named Wapol and his henchman.  And while at Drum Island, the Straw Hat Pirates realize that these people may not be as kind to help them.

It’s important to note that with the next volume 16, it will be an important volume will introduce a new character who will become a permanent member of the Straw Hat Pirates!  So, I can’t wait to read the next omnibus edition!

As always, Eiichiro Oda’s pages are like a smorgasbord of artwork. He manages to fill every scene with characters and sometimes plenty of destruction or beauty. He puts so much into his artwork for his manga series and that’s just one of the reasons why people love his work.

Also, with each major chapter conclusion, he answers mail from his fans with a humorous take and if anything, this latest storyline is delightful and fun! There is no doubt in my mind that “One Piece” fans will love this series!

These earlier volumes are fantastic and are full of action and humor, but most importantly this volume introduces a character who will play a big role in the Straw Hat Pirates and also next omnibus edition that will introduce us to another character who plays a significant role in the group.

Action-packed and a lot of fun, “One Piece: Baroque Works (Vol. 13-15 – Omnibus Edition)” is highly recommended!

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