Monday, September 25, 2023

Is “One Piece” finally ending the live action anime adaptation curse on Netflix?


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Featured Photo by Joe Albus

Story by Larry Rincon

For years live action anime adaptations have been made, and unfortunately these adaptations have a history of receiving bad reviews from fans. 

From “Death Note” to “Cowboy Bebop”, Netflix has tried time and time again to create a somewhat decent adaptation of anime. Recently however, it seems that Netflix may have hit the jackpot with their latest live action anime adaptation, “One Piece.”

As someone who has watched a lot of anime, it seems that “One Piece” was always the one series that I heard a lot of good stuff about. The only issue is the intimidating over 1000 episodes that have been released for it. That’s right, for more than 20 years, the anime has been releasing a steady flow of episodes tracking the adventures of the Straw Hat Pirates. 

Without any context to the anime, I can say that the show was full of fun and interesting character stories. I could tell how in anime-form certain episodes and certain storylines would have probably been broken into three or more episodes, but in the show the story was very quick and flowed without drawing out certain parts for too long. 

From talking to fans of the show it has come to my understanding that season one covers the entire East Blue saga, which in the anime apparently lasts 54 episodes. So thank you, Netflix, for saving me at least 13 hours of my life. 

In addition, I have found out that there are quite a few changes that were made. Koby played a bit more of a prominent role in the live action, appearing more often than he did in the anime. Also, Luffy’s grandfather Garp plays a huge role in the East Blue saga arc even though he doesn’t appear until way later in the anime. 

From what I’ve been seeing and hearing from fans, all these changes were great and welcomed choices; Honestly it was just the perk of working with the original creator. Eiichiro Oda, the creator himself, was a huge part in the making of this series. The live action was made in his vision, so I do think that this gives the show a lot of credibility. 

Being part of the group of audience members who had no context watching the show, there were two things that stood out to me about this show: the cast and the costumes. 

Acting is always a make it or break it type of situation when it comes to recreating something that already exists just in a different format. A person can have the looks for a character, but if they can’t fully embody that personality the whole thing falls apart. 

I thoroughly enjoyed Iñaki Godoy’s portrayal of Luffy. I’ve seen a lot of comments of people praising his energy and enthusiasm promoting the show, so I imagine that his upbeat personality is very similar to the personality that Luffy is meant to have. 

The other actors did a good job as well. You know an actor nailed the character who is edgy and broody when you can’t help but be annoyed with their egoistic attitude. Mackenyu’s Zoro was cool to see in live action and I know people are probably tired of TikTok and Instagram being filled with thirst reels and posts on his character. 

Costume design was another part of the live action that I loved. I would look up the characters’ original designs to compare the live action design to the original versions. I like when things are exact copies from the original reference; This series actually managed to do it well. 

With all this being said, I do believe that the live action anime curse is somewhat over. Netflix has finally presented a decent and honest adaptation of a beloved series. 

The fans who hated this tv series are honestly hating to hate, but the real ones know that this is better than they could have hoped for. I may not be a fan of “One Piece” and may have never seen the anime or read the manga, but I know that what was delivered was good. 

I do hope that Netflix continues with this series and doesn’t cancel it like it does with every other show they produce. Netflix has been needing good new content, and “One Piece” has been the only thing to catch my attention so far.

To contact Lifestyles Editor Destiny Mizell, email For more news, visit, or follow us on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines or on X at @MTSUSidelines.

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