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Translations: Gintama 515 (2)
Hello!!! How goes it everyone?
Ive decided to get in on the chapter reviews as I spend a lot of time just in my head analyzing chapters and dont actually post these thoughts cause of my own weird obsessive compulsive tendencies that Id prefer not to get into right now. I may also start Bleach reviews, but Ive decided to start here since One Piece has a lack thereof at the moment. I know its a bit late but there isnt any up so why not? Please tell me if I do a good job. Now on with the review
Chapter 443: Thriller Park
Enels Moon Wars!!!: Enels side story is no longer some mere skirmish, but the giant explosion foreshadows a giant war on the Moons surface. It looks like he may end up saving the moon people from war. These side-stories seem to have a habit of turning former enemies into productive members of society and I think this will be no different. Hes been pretty emotionless so far, but I just cant wait for the day we see him grow a heart as he sits in tears and lets out a cry worthy of Darth Vader.
Meet Brooke: Last chapter we met the wacky skeleton and got a taste of how immature he can be. Now he meets the crew and we get to see their reactions to him. You got to love Usopps full blown anti-undead gear. From the look of the upcoming arc, I wouldnt be surprised if he wares that getup throughout the whole thing to shield himself from ghosts. And it just wouldnt be right if Brooke didnt try to get a panty peek from the other Mugiwara woman.
We can tell from the start that dealing with him will be interesting. Since his recruitment into the crew last week, Ive been wondering how many separate issues that would create in the crew and apparently its a lot. This is pretty good reasoning for his not becoming a permanent member. I doubt that Usopp could ever get used to having a skeleton onboard and that Brooke could actually be a productive member of the crew with his short attention span.
Dinner Party: Now that the crew has gotten somewhat accustomed to having a living skeleton onboard, they sit down to eat and we witness even more rudeness from Brooke. For a guy in a suit hes got some pretty lousy table manners.
Basically, we just get to see even deeper still into Brookes impulsiveness. Sanji gets reasons aplenty to dislike him here. I think that Odas becoming more interested in toilet humor lately. First we get Franky running through Water 7 bottomless and now hes centralized Brookes humor on poop, farts, belches, and other inappropriate acts
Bleached Bones: We finally get to know why a skeleton can walk and talk. This yami yami fruit is quite possibly the weirdest devil fruit weve seen yet. Hes received the gift of having 2 lives, but he had to find his body first. By the time he found it, his flesh was gone, but strangely enough his hair survived. I always thought hair grew on the scalp not the skull, but if his hair was so rooted that it actually invaded his brain during life, it might explain why hes so screwed up.
The explanation using devil fruits seems like a pretty good choice for Oda rather than the obvious curse. The entire idea of Brooke is a mimicry of the horror genre and so just like his personality is made to contrast the creepiness of skeletons, the basis for his affliction is one that is totally accepted in the world of One Piece. The rest of his affliction is not so normal.
Another Story: If a walking, talking skeleton isnt enough, hes got no reflection and no shadow!!! I cracked up when he left the story hanging like that. It makes me think that he's not as impulsive as he seems and rather chooses to be annoying
Shadow Thief: Despite his reluctance, he explains how he has no shadow or reflection. His shadow was stolen and without it he will be killed by the suns rays. According to him, he is shielded from the sun by the Triangles fog, but would surely die if he left it. As Brookes past gets darker and weirder, the stranger his upbeat personality seems.
ok .now Odas starting to get into some weird stuff. I wanna know how exactly a shadow is stolen and why. Looks like we have to meet the guy who stole it
The Sad News: For all of Brookes loyal followers, this chapter held a very dark revelation. BROOKE REFUSES THE CREW INVITATION!!! The pain is deepened still when Luffy learns that he is a musician (btw, where was he hiding that violin?). Luffy (and A LOT of people here on MH) have been waiting for so long for a musician only for him to break their hearts. However, if they get his shadow back, theres no reason not to join them. I guess this might just be their lucky day.
I kinda saw this coming. I knew that Oda wouldnt add a new nakama that quickly, so I assumed that hed revoke his acceptance. No nakama has (or should) joined that simply. Even Robin, who joined without being asked, wouldnt have joined had she not seen the lengths Luffy went to in saving Arabasta and her as well. If Brooke does end up joining eventually, it would still have to be after Luffy proves himself. I still doubt it will happen because it seems too simple to just retrieve his shadow. The emotional connection should be what links them, but his joining would simply be voluntary as long as a condition is met and it just seems wrong.
Ghosts of Thriller Park: We finally learn the implications of opening that cask in the last chapter. They have been followed and captured by the floating ghost island from West Blue, Thriller Park. For the first time we see Brooke in a serious light ( well somewhat serious ) as he leaves to go retrieve his shadow.
Thus he becomes the gateway into the next arc and the next excuse for Luffy to go on an adventure and get into trouble. This event clearly marks the beginning of the next adventure as we have been given a location, a goal and an enemy. Id have to say this is a pretty fast entrance into an arc. Oda seemed to rush into this like he either wants to get this arc over with or he really wants to get to the heart of it quickly. I really hope that it is the latter as it allows us more time with Brooke. The only issue now is how will Brooke manage to make it through Thriller Park alone if he cries every time he sees a ghost?
Looking Ahead: Well Luffys expression says it all. The Mugiwara Pirates are on a new adventure to fight ghosts. Nothing will stop these guys. Look forward to more of Luffys starry eyes, Usopps exorcist gear and possibly some new history for Robin to learn (the ghost have been around for quite some time, so its likely that they know stuff that didnt make it into the history books). I also predict that Zoro will find a sword on this island as it is likely that the island has consumed the treasures of all those lost ships on the Triangle and thus a high quality sword is probably hidden in the mix. Now that I mention it, Im pretty sure Nami will be right there next to Zoro with Beli in her eyes as she looks down on all the loot.
Overall: I loved this chapter. Its yet another example of Odas supreme ability to combine ridiculousness with plot development. The chapter highlights Brooke and Oda shows us his skill at characterization. We know Oda likes to take influences for characters from other media and he has taken Jack Skellington to a new level of comedy. As it relates to the manga as a whole, the story has been stuck in side-plots for a while that are made to set up later events in the grand scheme of the story, but now Oda has officially started a new arc and it looks like a good one. Hes mocked governments, gods, kingdoms, and pirates and now hes going to flip the very symbols of horror stories on their heads.
Edit: added pictures
Great Review sahugani! Can't wait to read ur next one.
A very good read. I agree with you almost about everything, but I believe it's too soon to know if Brooke will be part of the crew or not.
well just my opinion. I love Brooke and if the Strawhats do get a musician, i'd really love it to be him. I just don't see it happening from the direction of the story thusfarOriginally Posted by Luckas
sahugani-- this is some good stuff. wonderful review. i always like your cogently constructed arguments. And this is no different. Good job.
with the way prior crew members got into the crew especially when Luffy asked them personally-- i think the probability of Brooke joining is on the high end of the probability scale.Originally Posted by Luckas
Not forgetting that Oda hasnt dangled any nakama prospect in our faces as much as he did for a Mugiwara musician.