One Piece Volume 56: Thank You

One Piece Volume 56: Thank You
Story and Art: Eiichiro Oda
Release Date: 4th December 2009
Covers Chapters 542-551
Shonen Jump/Viz Media

Get to the top and escape! Luffy and his new prison friends are charging up the underwater prison fortress Impel Down to break out and free his brother Ace! As they move up each floor, the threats grow stronger and new problems keep popping up to make this the most insane breakout in history. Time slowly ticks away as Ace approaches the execution stand…

Volume 56 is manic. Each chapter covers Luffy and his newly befriended forces rushing up each floor, while the Warden Magellan and his guards move down to stop the uproar. With different levels of chaos taking place on different levels of the sea fortress at once, the chapters jump between the battles and developments without a single moment to breath. It is absolutely brilliant and the people working with Luffy make for some pleasing surprises. Crocodile battling together with Luffy seemed an impossibility, but anything seems possible in One Piece.

The urgency of the situation leaves no time to stay in one place and this is probably the fastest the progression in the series has felt. It’s like an action move in the pivotal scene with a bigger problem popping up one after the other as the heroes try to overcome them. We have giant beasts, a poison battle rematch, candle mecha Luffy, Blackbeard popping up from nowhere and an empty sea to make it through. Covers for the chapters follow the rest of the Straw Hats and what they’re up to, which makes for one stuffed volume of information and fun. Every single character, good, bad or minor has a moment of glory, most series would consider this a grand finale in its scope and epic moments.

Volume 56 is a blast, the ultimate prison break story and some of the craziest battles and designs stuffed into each and every panel. By the end your eyes will feel overdosed on true creative magic. And we’ve still got the great war to face.

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