There’s something strange going on here and I’m wondering if anyone else noticed it or if my tinfoil hat is just on a little too tight.
Oden and Luffy are way too similar.
I’m not suggesting there’s a familial relation but there’s something *inherently* similar about these two. It goes all the way back to Luffy listening to Oden’s history for the first time in the ruins of Kuri Castle.
Remember, Luffy (almost as a rule) doesn’t listen to backstories. He doesn’t care about motivations, he just acts on what he thinks is right based on what’s he’s seen with his own two eyes. Now, readers having spent some time with him, Oden’s line about being ‘cramped’ matches Luffy’s style, not to mention it’s exactly what Luffy said about having the handle the members of the Grand Fleet.
But the similarities don’t end there! Consider the name of Oden’s attack in this chapter ‘Gan Modoki’ which literally means ‘Demon Intent Gun’.
But the similarities don’t end there! Consider the name of Oden’s attack in this chapter ‘Gan Modoki’ which literally means ‘Demon Intent Gun’. While real ‘ganmodoki’ is a tofu fritter commonly found in oden ingredients (the theme of Oden’s attacks in general) looking at the kanji 銃(meaning ‘gun’) and 擬鬼 (a unique combination from Oda-sensei used here to mean ‘intent of a demon’) could also be understood as 銃もどき or ‘fake gun’. Fake gun….You mean like a…RUBBER PISTOL!?
All the Old Familiar Places
Does the terrain of this island look familiar? Check out this unnamed island location from the Chapter 140 color spread. Bam, exact same massive tree…rocks? It’s rare that we see a cover location become canonized!
Weekly Shonen Jump #4+5 Ch.966
One Piece Vol.16 Ch.140
One Piece Vol.80 Ch.800
One Piece Vol.91 Ch.920
One Piece Vol.95 Ch.959
Layout the Details
Congratulations Oda-sensei on your collaboration with Arashi! My sister-in-law is a huge Arashi fan so maybe she’ll learn a little about One Piece as well!
So! Obviously this was a very big chapter with lots to digest but for now I’d like to take a closer look at a more simplistic aspect of the chapter, panel layout, specifically of this scene:
Oda-sensei has used full-page close-ups before but unlike Roger here, the majority of those scenes favor single-page layout *without* the image crossing the page break.
Note how Enel, Luffy, and Usopp clearly stay within the boundaries of their own page. And yet here, Oda-sensei chose to carry the close-up shot across the gap and onto the next page.
While we can’t know without asking the man himself, I’d like to offer a theory. With Enel and gang, the page break makes a hard separation line focusing the reader’s eyes on the page like a laser. Compare that to Roger. The reader’s eye hits Roger’s face, moves down to the text box, and instead of stopping, smoothly carries us over to the next page. What’s more, the inked space of Roger’s close-up goes from filling 100% of the page on the right, to a little more than half on the left giving us a sense of descending action. Although a comic book can’t move, thanks to the layout, we can almost feel time slow down as our eyes move across the massive spread, granting readers the illusion of a poignant slow-motion scene. Can’t wait to see if the animation picks up on the cue!
Interestingly enough, all of these scenes feature right-facing characters but Roger is facing left. Although difficult to say for sure, this may be a result of the left-facing characters looking at something readers are aware of, while Roger is seeing something we’re still entirely oblivious too.
Lastly, this makes a fantastic suggestion of what’s to come one day when Luffy sees the One Piece for himself. In Chapter 590 Luffy is drawn on the *left* page *facing right* with his hair overlapping the seam, similar to Roger’s page-breaking depiction here.
Imagine how this scene could be book-ended with Luffy laughing and facing left, having found ‘everything’.
Weekly Shonen Jump #6+7 Ch.967
One Piece Vol.30 Ch.279
One Piece Vol.60 Ch.590
One Piece Vol.73 Ch.731
One Piece Vol.74 Ch.742