It’s another Sunday and another episode of our beloved One Piece anime. Over the past couple of weeks we were finally able to put the Señor Pink and Diamante battles behind us. I was hoping to do the same for Pica as well but this was just not the case. In any case, here are my thoughts of One Piece Episode 718 – Giant Statue Pica’s Surprise Maneuver.
- If you prefer not to read a recap of what happened you can skip over Recap Piece and head over to the Impression Piece section below for the analysis. Enjoy!
The episode starts off back at Bellamy vs. Luffy. For what reason? no one knows, because it was totally unnecessary. We then return to the platform where, in the previous episode, Pica abandoned his fight with Zoro to go meet Kyros and Rebecca after their defeat of diamante. After Pica speaks down upon King Riku, Kyros makes the mistake of insisting that Riku is a great king and that the whole country wants him back. This sparks Pica to make a go at King Riku on the other platform. On the way to repossess the giant stone statue he made a while back, he attacks Baby 5 and the Chinjao family. Pica then has a small exchange to Zoro about wanting to get rid of Riku who’s presence is giving hope to the people in the war for Dressrosa.
The towering squeek
Pica then reclaims his gigantic body and makes off to kill King Riku. Zoro follows in pursuit in an attempt to stop him. Pica causes massive destruction on his way to the platform and Zoro is unable to catch up. Zoro thinks desperately of a plan to deal with Pica and comes up with the following options: 1). A long distance slash – which would be ineffective, 2). Make a massive jump to Pica – which is too far, 3). Warning Usopp – who would not hear him and 4). Calling on a den-den mushi – which he does not have. Zoro meets up with the King of Prodence, Elizabello II who is ready to deliver a King Punch to Pica, which Zoro told him to save earlier. Zoro calms himself to think and comes up with plan no. 5). Fly in the sky and chop him up.
An excellent plan Zoro, my man
Now this episode is mostly set up for, what I hope, is the ending of Zoro vs. Pica. A clash that started way back in episode 670 (almost a year ago to the day). We first went back to check on Luffy and Bellamy which was unnecessary because it makes it seem like that exchange has been going on for hours, when in reality, only a few minutes have passed. I am not sure as to why Pica decided to abandon Zoro to confront Kyros. For some reason, Pica had a revelation that killing King Riku would end the conflict. While this seems like good idea from a tactical standpoint, he was still unable to defeat Zoro after such a long fight, meaning he would have had to fight Zoro anyway. Or… he was counting on one of the other executives to take Zoro down, which is quite cowardly. I also thought it was quite funny that Kyros’ passion of his king and country that actually sparks Pica to move on King Riku. I wonder Pica would have chosen not to do so if Kyros said something different.
“This is Donquixote’s Country!!!”
The second half of the episode is just a lot of Pica causing destruction to the combatants and the city as he makes for the platform. The best part of this was Zoro’s pursuit. It seems that Zoro has grown up a bit during the time skip, weighing out all of his options in the limited time that he has. This may be an early shadowing of Zoro becoming a legend in combat not only for his sword skills but also in tactics as well. Even earlier, and also in this episode, he showed wisdom by asking King Elizabello to save his King Punch for something else because it won’t work on Pica. Instead he comes up with: PLAN 5 where Zoro intends to fly in the sky and chop him up. Zoro can’t use geppou/sky-walk like Sanji so we can imagine that he needs help to do this. The scene where he comes up with the plan is my favourite for the episode and shows a great use of minimalist animation for maximum effect unlike some earlier scenes in this episode.
Extreme minimilast awesomeness
This episode is based on parts of Chapter 777 (Zoro vs. Pica) and 778 (Tatics No. 5) of the manga. Things happen a lot faster in the manga as you would expect, with the Bellamy scene and King Riku flashback scene evidently missing. I think the anime depicts better how Pica shows a blatant disregard for the injured as well as his own henchmen as he goes about his business. On the other hand, I felt that Zoro’s frustration with Pica was much deeper in the manga panels than in the anime. The anime also does a bit of a better job at showing us just how immense Pica’s giant statue form is. Although, at times I felt as though his size was disproportionate in some scenes especially when they showed how much bigger he was than the palace platform. Other than that, the anime was a faithful recreation. But I think I much prefer the art from the manga, except for Zoro’s PLAN 5 scene which was ridiculously awesome along with that blood-pumping music.
Some of the original art
Bottom line Piece
Look, this was an okay episode. Despite some scenes that were clearly placed to fill time. The biggest issue I had was with the recycling of animations, the most prominent were the scenes where Pica’s statue form was walking across the country sending henchmen and buildings flying. Those same animations much have been shown as least two times within a couple of minutes of each other and it was a bit disappointing to see. I also did not like going back to Bellamy as recycled animations were also used there. But, as a set-up episode for some awesome action coming up, I thought that it did do it’s job and I can’t complain too much about that. I just can’t wait to see Zoro finally dropping this over-sized idiot and his ridiculously squeeky voice.
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Image credits: Toei Animation, Funimation, Shueisha, VIZ media