Before we begin, everyone, a bit of an apology. For months I’ve been snarking about the impending existence of a live-action One Piece show, insisting such a thing could never work. Then the first season came out two weeks ago, I watched it, and…..I liked it?
But in my defense, what was I supposed to think coming in? Netflix’s track record with adapting anime into real-people shows is abysmal. They flubbed on Cowboy Bebop, which is a much more grounded concept than One Piece, so how could they possibly get One Piece right? ….Well, somehow, they DID, and I think it has a lot to do with creator Eiichiro Oda playing a personal role in the show’s development.
Netflix has officially ordered a second season of their version of One Piece, and Oda himself delivered the news via transponder snail in the video below. Oda oversaw the scripts, the sets, and the casting. The guy he hired to play Luffy, Iñaki Godoy, really does feel like Luffy, and Emily Rudd makes for a spot-on Nami. Usopp feels a bit off, but I can live with it. The greatest challenges, though, may be yet to come. The first five pirates have joined the Straw Hat crew, and next in line would be…a talking reindeer who can change his shape and is a skilled doctor. How on Earth can they pull off Chopper?
Before they tackle that problem, though, they have to get everything else in order. Oda mentions it will “still take awhile to get the scripts ready,” even though most are outlined, and then there’s the fact that no one can show up on set due to the Hollywood strike. Becky Clements, president of Tomorrow Studios (the production company that handles the show), says “somewhere between a year and 18 months, we could be ready for air,” but that sounds pretty darn optimistic.