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sahugani
June 21, 2008, 04:01 PM
Sahugani’s One Piece Review 504

http://img171.imageshack.us/img171/671/mostwantedbyg0069la0.jpg (http://g0069.deviantart.com/art/Most-Wanted-85886729)
the future of piracy

Yesh! I love early RAW days (or early compared to what it has been recently). Add to that that I finally had a Friday with not much to do and I could fully enjoy manga for the day (blame Sai_the_Shaman for me not actually finishing it yesterday). Not much else to say, so let’s just get on with it. The pics in this review come from the Franky House scanlation and the title pic is a piece by G0069 (http://g0069.deviantart.com/) over at DeviantArt, so be sure to stop by his gallery.


Chill

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manly men eat parfaits

We got the color spread I asked for last week and so now we’re back to the cover arc with the CP9. This week’s is not all that spectacular. Bleuno, Jyabura, Kaku, and Fukurou are all relaxing at a café while they wait for Kalifa, Kumadori, and Hattori to come back with the clothes they bought. From the looks of it, Bleuno is reading a newspaper while Kaku and Fukurou have a laugh at Jyabura’s expense. He seems to have developed a sweet tooth and has ordered a parfait, which somewhat conflicts with his manly and competitive persona of his former existence (though I see nothing wrong with enjoying tasty desserts). Now that they no longer work as assassins for the government, they can not only allow their true interests to show but they can treat each other like friends instead of colleagues. Now we just need to see if Lucci will follow this mindset as well before we get some twist added to this little tale.


Fear

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i wonder what his psychic success rate is

It seems that news of Luffy’s incident has reached across the archipelago to the other supernovae that Zoro had encountered before as well as Drake. Though a majority of them seem to be inclined to flee, each one has a unique reaction to the news that should reveal some truth to their personalities for us to see in full later. I still think that Oda introduced this many for a reason and even if they are fleeing now, they will play a role in the arc later in what I hope is a pirate alliance.

The first to make an action upon hearing the news is Capone, who tells his men to make a hasty retreat. Of all the supernovae, he is the least interesting. He shows the least backbone of any of them and orders a full retreat as soon as the news of danger hits his ears. However, his words do reveal that his ship has already been coated and so they can head to Fishman Island immediately. Assuming that these lesser supernovae are indeed going to play a role closer to the end of the arc, this could mean that Shabondy and Fishman Island won’t be separated into two arcs. Unless these lesser supernovae are stopped on the way to the undersea paradise, they could be there already by the time the admiral arrives, forcing it to become the stronghold for the pirate forces against the marines in this battle.

Next comes Bonney, who instantly recalls her interaction with Zoro. Though she was able to stop the Strawhat first mate from attacking Chalros, the captain finished the job. Unlike Capone who is simply afraid of the situation, Bonney is more ticked at the ones that caused it. Her focus on Zoro seems to hint that the two of them will have more interaction later, which I will be very pleased to see. I definitely see her joining the alliance and Zoro will be the key to make it happen.

We also get a single small frame of Urouge, who though the lowest bounty of all the supernovae, seems to be the one most amused by the situation. He recognizes the danger and will likely flee to Fishman Island, but he seems impressed by the guts of the Strawhat crew to pull off something like this. I don’t think he’ll take too much convincing to ally once the time comes.

As the only supernovae not to come in contact with a Strawhat yet, Drake’s decision shows that he is more curious about the marines’ reaction rather than the Strawhats’ deed. He orders his crew to ready the ship, but not to actually set sail yet. Before that, he wants to see who the World Government will send to deal with this matter. Since he knows more about the marines’ inner workings than any other pirate on the island, he can judge the danger of the situation by who is sent. After he finds out though, it seems that like Capone, he plans to flee to the safety of Fishman Island. However, there does seem to be the chance that he will stick around longer and be of some importance during the admiral’s arrival.

Apoo’s reaction seems to be somewhat uncertain. In trying to figure out what to do, he reasons that the admiral will only go after Luffy and figures that even if he stays, he will likely not be in much danger. His crew however is not so optimistic and tries to convince him to flee the archipelago. He will likely flee in the end, but from his reaction, he seems to be inclined to take crazy chances and should the pirate alliance occur, he’d be willing to put his faith in it and fight an admiral together with the other crews.

The most interesting of these reactions is Hawkins, who seems to be the only one who is completely unconcerned with the danger of the situation. He does not seem like he intends to flee like the others since his apparent premonitions have not shown him any signs that his crew will fall today. The fact that he is sticking around as well as his status as the third highest bounty in Shabondy makes his presence unique similar to Kidd and Law who are with the Strawhats right now. Just like the two “dark captains” are helping Luffy right now, Hawkins will play a role to aid Luffy later, possibly helping to facilitate the Strawhats’ escape before using some ability of his to save his own crew.


Word Reaches the Top

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It's hard enough dealing with Garp without Luffy and Dragon causing problems

The next individual to hear word of this is Sengoku, who seems a bit overstressed at the moment. In addition to dealing with the upcoming war he started against Whitebeard, he now has to deal with yet another catastrophe caused by Strawhat Luffy in a long chain of damaging incidents. The officer delivering the news also states that Eustass Kidd and Trafalgar Law are there with portions of their crews. However, he leaves out the presence of Rayleigh possibly due to Garp’s order not to tell Sengoku. The truly interesting part of the officer’s announcement is that he says there are thirteen bounty heads present at the incident. With the Strawhats, Kidd, Killer, and Law, the total bounty heads we know of counts up to twelve. Brooke’s inclusion in the crew is recent though and the government has most likely not yet figured out who he is and reinstated his old bounty, thus meaning there are two bounty heads under 100 million unaccounted for in the officer’s report. Most likely one of these is the zombie guy standing next to Kidd and Killer since he seemed more than capable of withstanding Rayleigh’s technique. The other is one of Law’s crew and crazy as it may seem, it could very well be the bear (though it could be the guy in the standard Heart Pirate uniform). Since neither crew present is the complete roster like the Strawhats are right now, we can’t be certain how many more bounty heads each holds, but we can safely assume that there are one to three commanding the remainders on each crew’s ships. As the officer continues his report, he nearly calls the auction house a human shop before correcting himself and calling it a “public employment security office”. Because the World Government cannot officially support the sale of humans and humanoids, they have created this name to use as a way to avoid the bad connotation of the real name. This way they can deploy marines to defend it without making an official statement of supporting the illegal sale of humans.


Monkey Deployed

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fear the yellow monkey!

Also present in Sengoku’s office is Admiral Kizaru, who offers to hold up the World Government’s promise of an admiral’s retribution. It seems that given the current situation of a war with Whitebeard on the horizon, Sengoku is hesitant to keep this promise since it diminishes the strength of the marines to reassign one of its three leaders. Kizaru quells Sengoku’s fear and tells him that he won’t take too long, assuming that he’ll be able to just deal with this incident quickly and be back in time to clash with Whitebeard. Kizaru’s presence here means that the silhouetted figure from early in the Shabondy adventure was apparently not him. Despite this, the similarity of this shadowy figure to the silhouette Oda has already shown for Kizaru is undeniable. Since the admiral is now making an appearance, this dark axe-man could have some connection to him. We can at least be relatively certain that the axe-man will show up again due to the ominous nature of his sole appearance. As for Kizaru himself, though his appearance is short and incomplete, there are a few aspects of his character that can be gleaned in comparison to the other two admirals. He does not seem to have as much of a moral attachment to his job as Ao Kiji or Akainu. When his self-confidence is accounted for, it seems he enjoys his job because it allows his abilities to be recognized as opposed to Ao Kiji’s efforts to do what is morally right or Akainu’s use of his position to further his “absolute justice”. He also seems to have the most loyalty to Sengoku. While the goals of the other two admirals many times force them to act outside or even contradictory to Sengoku’s orders, Kizaru sees his superior’s dilemma and gladly offers his services to fix it. On a final note, he seems to think very much in the moment with less regard for the future than his colleagues. Rather than worry about the war that will occur in the near future, he puts priority on the more pressing matter that is occurring presently. This lack of concern for the future is a trait that is also represented by his name meaning yellow monkey. Oda has likened the name “Monkey” to being carefree and living in the moment similar to the animals, which has been shown through Luffy and Garp (but not Dragon). Kizaru is similar to that theme but not to the extent of the aforementioned two.


Owner’s Disregard

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he seems a bit giddy, doesn't he?

A short while back, the theory took off that Doflamingo ran the auction house due to the crossed out smiley that could be seen as its symbol. I was hesitant to believe it for a while due to the fact that I didn’t want Doflamingo interfering with the events of the arc. However, it seems that not only is it the truth, but Oda pulled it off in a manner that satisfies my distaste of the idea. Through simple slight manipulation of his art, Oda was able to hint at the connection when we first saw the symbol but made it different enough to make the connection uncertain. The symbol as it appears on the old auction house back wall has a straight smile rather than a curved one and lacks a line to establish two rows of teeth, making it significantly different from Doflamingo’s. However, the version that can be seen in this chapter has two rows of teeth and is curved, making it identical to Doflamingo’s symbol. This could simply be a continuity error on Oda’s part as he alters the symbol from one chapter to the next. If this is the case, he did it in order to keep the connection fuzzy until now and hope we wouldn’t care. I think our best bet for an explanation of the change is to keep an eye on SBS questions so we can find out if he stuck it in with a purpose or not. Expect the answer to be half-serious and amusing. Anyways, now that the shop is in the middle of a catastrophe, the manager, Disco, is desperate to get in contact with his boss and figure out what to do. Unfortunately for him, Doflamingo has abandoned any attachment to the auction house and tells Disco to deal with it himself. Instead of dealing with this, he is much more interested in the fact that he and the other Shichibukai have been summoned together to battle Whitebeard.

From this latest detail, we can do a bit more characterization on Doflamingo’s nature. As we know, he has a belief that a new world order is coming in which only the strong can survive. We also know from his ability that he likes to manipulate things from behind the scenes. From the looks of it, he likes to initiate various side projects to further the promotion of his philosophy. This includes his former crew under Bellamy, which merely goes around showing off its strength and beating up idealists. This also includes the auction house, which in its very nature punishes weaklings and lesser class individuals who are not worthy to live in Doflamingo’s future. Doflamingo himself though is easily bored and passes off the management of these projects to subordinates like Bellamy and Disco as a test to see if they are willing to serve him once his new order becomes realized. Once the subordinate fails, he is either left to fall with the project or taken down by Doflamingo personally depending on how bored the Shichibukai is at the moment. We can expect to see at least one or two more of these types of projects to pop up in the series between now and the time that Doflamingo actually gets dealt with.


Concern

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I pity these fools

While the crews of Luffy, Law, and Kidd meet up with Rayleigh inside the auction house, the marine troops attempt to prepare for an imminent clash outside its doors. A part of that task is keeping the civilians clear from the area to avoid and more damage to the nobles of Shabondy. However, some of the nobles stubbornly refuse to retreat since the slaves that they bought are still inside and since they assume these rebellious pirates will be caught, that means more potential slaves will be waiting for them to purchase. As for the actual battle preparations, they have mounted cannons and aimed them at the doorway to await the pirates. They also are quick to receive word that Kizaru will arrive shortly to fix the situation. However, the commanding officer becomes extremely concerned when the he is told of the troops Kizaru is brining. Since we can’t have a One Piece arc with Luffy having his fight but all the Strawhats being denied their own duels, it is expected that Kizaru will bring with him a specialized troop for the other Strawhats and possibly a few supernovae to take on. The fact that these troops terrify the marine CO likely means that they are the types of fighters who disregard allies in combat situation and in the course of taking the target down show no concern for the lives of civilians or other marines. Though that seems more like Akainu’s style, Kizaru is in a bit of a time crunch with the Whitebeard clash on the horizon, so he likely wants to get this situation resolved with haste even if it means a bit of collateral damage. I just hope these guys bring their own fleet of battleships with them so we can get a naval battle at this arc’s climax.


Collar Removed

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explosions make everything cooler

Inside the auction house, Rayleigh fiddles with Caimie’s explosive collar despite multiple people screaming their protests that doing so without the key will kill her. Though it is not explained how, Rayleigh does manage to safely remove the collar before it detonates. It seems that this is how Rayleigh got them off himself and the giant as well rather than defuse the explosive or simply withstand the blast (which Rayleigh and possibly the giant could likely pull off). As a former pirate of great renown and with his years in Shabondy acting as a gambler and thief, picking the lock on the collar is a simple task for him and is much more natural a skill for him than dealing with the explosive. The only person seemingly annoyed with Caimie’s collar being off is Franky, who had just found the keys. Since Caime is free anyways, Franky quickly calms down and passes off the ring of keys to the imprisoned slaves, telling them to run for it while the nobles are unable to stop them.


Speculation

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i'm surprised Robin didn't connect the dots first

With Caimie freed, the most pressing matter is dealt with and the Strawhats are left to wonder who this old man is. While the Strawhats are still clueless as to what is going on, the others around have a much better grasp of the situation. The first to shed some light on it is Hachi, who calls the technique Rayleigh just used haki. We can assume this is the universal name for the “spirit” technique that we have seen from him, Shanks, and Luffy. Even though Hachi knows Rayleigh well, he admits that even he doesn’t know much about the ability. Given that Rayleigh is retired and has been living in hiding, he likely didn’t display the ability much for young Hachi, who likely wouldn’t understand it even if the old man tried explaining it. Rayleigh is also the first to take notice of those whom he did not exempt from his haki yet still remained standing. Other than Kidd, Law, and Killer, the only other ones to stay standing were the stitched up guy from Kidd’s crew, a guy from Kidd’s crew behind him that can barely be seen in the frame, the bear from Law’s crew, and two of Law’s human subordinates (though one was just barely able to withstand it). Both Law and Kidd are intrigued by this development and instantly recognize the name Rayleigh as the Dark King first mate of the Roger crew. Though Luffy is Rayleigh’s main interest, the power and knowledge of Kidd and Law have gotten the old man’s attention. As fellow pirates, he asks them to refrain from mentioning his title of Dark King around the archipelago. He is retired and would rather live in peace for the remainder of his days. Should it become public knowledge that the coating engineer Rayleigh was Roger’s first mate, the government would be on his back again. He could probably take on almost any opponent that is sent after him, but it would simply be a hassle that he’d want to avoid if possible.


Standing Ground

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do ya feel lucky?

After recognizing the two dark captains, Rayleigh turns his attention back to Hachi and the Strawhats. As he looks after his old friend and thanks the pirates for their efforts, one of Kidd’s men points out that the marines have the place completely surrounded. Rayleigh lets them know that he doesn’t plan to use his Haki anymore, so the three captains will need to find their own way to get out of this mess. The first to act is Kidd, who has been amused by this whole situation and decided to take on all the forces outside by himself to help Law and Luffy’s crews escape. However, in doing so, he looks down on both of his fellow supernovae, causing them to get ticked off. Law grabs his sword and all three captains end up walking out together, forming the first crude pirate alliance of the series. While these are the two captains I least expected to ally with Luffy, the circumstances of the current situation make this far from the type of alliance I envision later on. At this point, the captains are only allying out of pride so they don’t need to say that they were saved by a rival pirate. Each one is more than capable of taking out the entire group of marines, but since none will admit inferiority to another, the task is split. Luckily, the threat of an admiral put a time limit on the fight and so they don’t have time to fight amongst themselves, forcing them to uphold an unsaid agreement to not attack each other for now. If they didn’t have this time issue, the battle would likely be a free for all that would eventually break down to a three-way duel between captains. Kidd and Law still cannot be trusted to join a real alliance later (though this temporary unity increases the chances a bit). For a real pirate alliance, the goal is survival rather than pride. Kidd is more than anyone else the type whose pride and self-confidence would prevent him from relying on another crew to watch his back. Though he is fighting beside others right now, the weakness of the current opponent means he has more to fear from these other two captains than the opponents, so there is clearly no amount of trust present. As for Law, he’s only fighting here for some entertainment and because he doesn’t like how Kidd looked down on him. When it comes to the real fight, he’ll be more likely to ally than Kidd, but it’s still not a sure thing. He prefers to watch conflict from a distance, so he’ll likely prefer to watch the admiral fight the other pirates from the sidelines until somehow he is forced to become personally involved in the situation.


Those Inside

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yes, tell the man with no sense of direction

With the three captains starting the fight outside the building, the Strawhats inside have other issues to deal with. Zoro, Sanji, Robin, and Brooke seem ready to join their captain on the battlefield while the remaining members are more concerned with the escape and getting Hachi and Caimie to safety. Since the captains are fighting more for pride and will be taking out the marines indiscriminately to one-up each other, the battle hungry Strawhats’ task is to clear a direct path through which they can carry Caimie and Hachi out of danger. Rayleigh tells Zoro that if they are split up, to meet on Grove 13, which is where Shakkie’s place is located. Naturally, Usopp objects to this plan as he prefers the option of heading right back to the Sunny and leaving the archipelago altogether. Given that many of the other Supernovae are headed out to Fishman Island already, it looks like the plan will be to get the Sunny coated quickly and without the admiral noticing so they can get Hachi, Caimie, and the Strawhats to the safety of the undersea paradise. Rayleigh is the best coater in Shabondy, so if anyone could do a quality coating job in that short time, it’s him. Chances also seem good that he will use his strength to hold off the admiral to give the Strawhats time. Since he was not included in the report to Sengoku and Kizaru, he’s the one unknown and powerful factor that can give them that time. Luckily, he seems to have a friendship of sorts with Garp, so even if he does sacrifice himself to get the Strawhats out of Kizaru’s reach, he has a friend on the inside who can not only take good care of him but may play a role in letting him escape. As for the giant and the other slaves, it seems that they are taking a separate path for now and the giant is simply going to carry them to safety. Luckily, the captains fighting out by the front is a big enough diversion that even a giant tearing through the building’s back wall will likely go unnoticed. If this giant does not reappear to help later in this arc, I am relatively certain that he will pop up again when the Strawhats reach Elbaf.


Sheer Power

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Law and Kidd win at life

We return once again to the outside where the captains are showing off their abilities as they tear through the ranks of the marines. Cannons are apparently useless on all three of them due to their unique devil fruit powers. Luffy obviously has his gomu gomu no mi, so his fuusen technique bounces back the cannonballs as we have seen many times before.

Kidd’s ability seems to be the power to repel. In many ways this is similar to Kuma’s nikyu nikyu no mi, but there are some distinct differences. With Kuma’s ability, a repulsive force is generated directly from the pads on his hands. When he parries enemy attacks with his pads, it is the fact that they are touching the pad that allows him to rapidly apply repulsive force to blow them back. This also applies to his air projectiles as he simply charges the air touching his pads with the repulsive force at a fast enough rate to give it a huge starting speed. Kidd’s repulsion works differently and rather than apply force through touch, he is able to generate repulsive force on objects remotely. Kuma’s method is to accelerate something through touch while Kidd’s is more like an antigravity. Since we have seen only one use, there is also a distinct possibility that he also has the power to attract, making it more similar to attractive and repulsive magnetic charges. For readers of 666 Satan, this makes his ability similar to Ball’s except that he can use this ability on any object he sees rather than needing to touch it with a weapon first. I can already envision the sheer power Kidd would wield by mastering such an ability. Though we have already seen the attraction ability with Blackbeard, Kidd’s devil fruit lacks the hidden traits of DF nullification and the black hole absorption of attracted material. Instead, Kidd’s ability grants him a form of telekinesis though with a lesser degree of fine control in exchange for greater momentum of moved objects.

Law’s ability seems to be one of the most unique in the entire series. He creates a dome of airspace that he calls a room. Within this “room,” he has the power to completely rearrange objects instantaneously, allowing him to exchange the head of a marine for the cannonball that was fired at him. Before doing this though, he first had to send a flying slash to behead the marine. This reveals a few details regarding the ability. First of all, objects in the “room” can only be exchanged in their whole forms, meaning that if an object is still firmly attached to some larger object, it can’t be exchanged separate from that larger object. To get around this, Law uses his sword to sever large objects into movable pieces. Another trait is that normally fatal events that occur within the room become non-lethal. The marine’s head was cut off and exchanged, but the head was clearly still alive. Taking into account the manipulative nature I see him having, the best explanation of his power is that within the enclosed space he basically has the power of God. He governs the powers of life and space within the “room,” a power which perfectly suits a smug manipulator. I’m guessing that after the circle is deactivated, objects return to their normal orientations but after Law has already done damage to the individual parts. Within the “room,” it is his power over space that allows severed body parts to act as normal. The difference between a clean slash and other types of damage such as blunt force or explosions is that a slash amputation creates two otherwise undamaged parts of a complete whole while other types cause widespread internal injury. While in the “room,” these severed yet undamaged parts are treated like separate objects and can be manipulated using Law’s spatial powers. Any other damage such as the cannonball explosion actually damages and cripples the body, meaning that that type of attack actually leaves a mark and hurts the affected. As I said, I expect that the special rearranging is negated after the circle deactivates, so all rearranged objects are switched back and all severed parts are reattached to reform the whole. However, damage from anything other than being severed remains since it ruined the pieces. In the case of the marine from this chapter, that means when the circle deactivates, he’ll have a relatively undamaged head attached to a burnt body and Law will be left holding the shards of the cannonball shell.


Overall

Waaah!!! Oda is incredible. Though he has not made the idea of an official pirate alliance apparent quite yet, he has given us a slight teaser with Luffy, Law, and Kidd fighting side by side. Since Law and Kidd are my favorites of the supernovae (especially Law), it makes it better still. Add to that that we’re starting to see Kizaru on the move and the awesomeness is taken up another notch. I know it goes unsaid, but I really can’t wait for next week.

darklazer57
June 22, 2008, 03:28 AM
Excellent review, it was a pleasure reading it!

Akainu
June 22, 2008, 07:26 AM
good review, though a bit much focus on your idea of an alliance but I think we all got ideas from time to time that absorb us ;-)
that said I think Capone won't play a bigger part later on. he seems dull and of a very fearful nature, thus I hope he stands as example for what happens when you let average Joe coate your ship. not that he would drown ... if it happens it would be somewhere near surface. sadly Oda somehow widened the rule of "SH dont kill" to "nobody dies" atm, so we can be sure that none of the marines died/ will die.

Raysen_ht
June 22, 2008, 10:10 AM
Great chapter and review!!

I also think ur giving to much focus on the pirate alliance...
I agree with what ur saying about the other supernova´s importance thought

About Kisaru... we´ll just have to wait and see, i cant make any predictions, we have almost nothing on him. Also, im not sure Sengoku is the kind to permit humman shops, there must be some deeper reason for it, maybe doflamingo told him a lie, and blackmailed the lesser marines not to tell, and thats why the one giving him reports changed what he was saying (its unlikely, but possible, isnt it?!?!)

The thing that really made me fall off my chair was the " Royal Shishibukai X WB pirates"
that will be awesome, althought im not sure we will get to see the fight...just the results (that will suck big time)

I dont think Reylegh picked any lock... he most likely just took the collar off by force, and fast enough to avoid getting hit by the explosion (thats why we cant see his arm, just a bluur)

I totaly agree with ur analises on the abilites, and i think Law´s is the most fitting one i´ve ever seen

Good job man, i love ur reviews, thx for the effort

Highseas7
June 22, 2008, 08:50 PM
i dont think that ray picked the collar i think he's so fast that at the moment of explsion he pulled the collar off and would be a great testament to his power great review again as always kid

omni-giri
June 23, 2008, 12:19 PM
maybe in law abilities he can only switch objects the same shape, size, or desity or he just likes chopping off heads xD why wouldn't he just chopped off an arm and switched that? it's a different shape? or...he likes cutting off heads...lol...

sahugani
June 27, 2008, 09:13 AM
hey guys. sorry i haven't really been around to reply this week. i've been a bit preoccupied with a few other things. i can't really make a full reply right now either, but i do have to agree with you guys that i might have lost some objectivity with this review and focused on the alliance idea a bit too much. hopefully after this manga break i'm taking, i'll be able to regain some of that objectivity

as for this week's chapter, i'm not going to be able to make a review, but i'll be back next week with a double (once again, Sai can be blamed).