One Piece Volume 45: You Have My Sympathies

One Piece Volume 45: You Have My Sympathies
Story and Art: Eiichiro Oda
Release Date: 2nd March 2007
Covers Chapters 431-440
Shonen Jump/Viz Media

The battle against CP9 is over, but the Water Seven saga still needs to wrap some loose ends up. A new crew member, a new ship and a whole load of plot revelations await!

Volume 47 is a nice break after the action which has gone before. The Straw Hats are recovering and we can enjoy a rather leisurely pace of the city and after events. For a wrap up it still manages to introduce new plot points and twists while wrapping everything up. We finally find out who Luffy’s father and grandfather are, though these moments feel a little out of the blue and random, it’s strange for One Piece to have these slightly loose moments. Possibly planned out years in advance, but could have been handled better. At least Grandfather Garp makes for a funny fellow as he acts just like an older Luffy, though navy centric.

The next line of events aren’t so seemingly random. We have new bounties for the crew, Franky joins up and the new ship is revealed. All predictable but welcome moments, though I feel Franky’s way of joining the crew was a touch on the sloppy side. It would have been better without the naked streaker chase being quite so stretched out. The new ship doesn’t leave much of an impact either, looking like a fatter lion version of the Going Merry. At least the special cannon power is pretty awesome. It’s an enjoyable conclusion to an amazing arc though and Franky’s real reason for not being able to leave the album is rather emotional, as is Usopp’s attempts at rejoining the crew. The volume aims for silly light-hearted laughs, but it still has that punch which draws you in.

Also volume 45 while being one exciting info dump of information, also starts up some events elsewhere in the world. Shanks meets up with the mighty Whitebeard while Luffy’s brother Ace finally confronts Blackbeard. These moments may be happening on the other side of the world but the tension is there, hints of things about to go terribly wrong.

Volume 45 is a volume crammed full of information which wraps around a tidy conclusion  and the promise of bigger things to come. And they must be huge if they are prepared to top the magnificent arc which was Water Seven.

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