Lord (Chopper) Helmet
Cover-story sojourns to Sakura usually reveal some new detail about the growth of the young kingdom and this time is no different as we see an update to the kingdom’s helmets.
The Chopper antlers are a new touch but it got me thinking about the spike in the middle of the helmets and I wondered why it was there. I went back to Chapter 636’s cover page looking for the answer and there it was, they’re modeled after the point which Dalton’s hair comes to!
Despite her gruff exterior, Kureha’s fashion sense betrays her true feelings of affection towards Chopper as the heart on her shirt contains a Chopper face!
Her briefcase also shows cherry blossom petals which are almost certainly a tribute to the miracle sakura of Dr. Hiruluk.
As for that newspaper she’s reading, check out this crudely drawn fellow with horns, is that Jack!?
The Glitzy Nightlife of Whale Forest
Since Whale Forest and Kurau City are populated by mink with opposing circadian rhythms, it only makes sense that Cat Viper’s village at the foot of the Whale Tree has its own culture and night life separate from Kurau City. Let’s look at some of the storefront signs glimpsed around the town.
Cat Viper was seen consuming THREE different types of alcohol while he pounded down lasagna in the bath: sake, shochu and Mugichuu (a brand of mugi shochu). Cat Viper and his Guardians seem to like them some ‘alcky-hol’ and they’ve got a place to gather for it!
The ‘R’ is obscured but this is obviously a restaurant. Oda-sensei, please, please, pleeease show us some local delicacies!
This is an Italian word for ‘hotel’. Ah-HA!!!! Italian roots huh? Besides the Garfield-connection, does this explain why Cat Viper is so into lasagna? That aside, does the Whale Forest get enough visitors to warrant a hotel???
Well I’ll Be a Mountain Monkey’s Uncle!
Chapter 814 also gave us a special guest appearance from Kaku!!! So great to see him after all this time!
Weekly Shonen Jump #9 Ch.814
One Piece Vol.64 Ch.636
Karoo’s Gonna Go Get the Papers, Get the Papers
Continuing with our cover page newspaper examination from the last chapter, take a look at the paper from which Karoo is carefully cutting Luffy’s bounty.
Turn the page upside down and a panel by Karoo’s right wing becomes discernable as a human male face.
He seems to be wearing a hat and has rather pronounced lips. Is this is someone we know or is it a character we haven’t met yet?
Dragons, Tigers & Cats, Oh My!
The creatures we’ve seen Kanjuro (crudely) bringing to life through his powers: a sparrow, a dragon, a cat and a tiger, have all been famously depicted in real-life Japanese pieces of historical artwork.
As Wano is heavily based on Japan, it’s *very possible* that we might see other animals who were given similar treatment in Japanese art.
Although there are many mythological and real creatures possible, I’m predicting that we’ll see frogs and rabbits before too long. After all, anthropomorphic frogs and rabbits were some of the first characters in ‘choju jinbutsu giga’ -what a mouthful right?- a series of illustrated scrolls dating back to the 12th century. Many scholars consider them to be the world’s first Japanese ‘manga’. Back in Dressrosa, Kinnemon mentioned that animals such as carp, cats and frogs were quite popular in Wano at the moment. HEY! I wonder if that popularity is due to ‘manga’, just like those illustrated scrolls, spreading in Wano! Manga within manga….woah.
Weekly Shonen Jump #10 Ch.815
One Piece Vol.80 Ch.806
The Color Haki
When Zoro infused his katana with Color of Arms, we saw (yet again) that haki-infused bodies/items displayed a purplish hue and aura.
What’s with that? In both English and Japanese all (known) three forms of haki include the word ‘color’ but why that is remains to be seen. Is it possible that the color of haki can change depending on the strength, type or even the individual using it? Here’s hoping that someday we’ll explore the origin of haki’s nomenclature!
TV Anime #719
The Nostalgia Express
Luffy’s battle with Bellamy and its conclusion are certainly familiar; we even touched upon that subject while the battle was still raging in the manga back in Course #28. But the nostalgia train doesn’t stop there. Luffy, forced to use violence in order to stop Bellamy, takes out his anger by bellowing for his prey, “DOFLAMINGOOOO!!!” Did that scene feel familiar too?
While it’s not uncommon for Luffy to scream his ambitions, think back to Alabasta and you might remember a strikingly similar scene!
When Luffy returned to the main story in Chapter 198 after an extended absence, he ROARED for his prey, Crocodile, while riding Pell into Alubarna Palace.
Even his pose from Alabasta is identical to his stance in Dressrosa.
The biggest difference is the viewpoint; while the Alabasta-era spread is an up-close view of Luffy from below, the Dressrosa spread is a bird’s-eye view of Luffy from above.
TV Anime #720
One Piece Vol.22 Ch.198
One Piece Vol.78 Ch.779