Some brief thoughts on this week's chapter of One Piece from Weekly Shonen Jump.
One Piece by Eiichiro Oda
Chapter 706 I Won't Laugh At You
In this week's chapter we catch up with Luffy at the gladiator tournament again and we get to see what the mysterious pirate in last week's chapter, Cannibal Bartolomeo, looks like. Hyena Bellamy and Luffy have a brief conversation as well, which I was really pleased to see. I had been hoping that we'd get to see Luffy one shot Bellamy again in this arc, but it seems like Oda is setting him up to be a little more sympathetic as well. Caven Dish, the Pirate Prince Luffy ran into a couple chapters ago, also gets to do some speculating on the tournament with Luffy and it seems like he'll be pretty important later on.
One of my favorite things about this tournament set up so far is that there are several characters who seem like they could actually be pretty important to the story of One Piece beyond this arc. We have Caven Dish and Rebecca the Swordswoman, who seem like they could become Luffy's allies. There's also Bellamy and Bartolomeo, who may serve as antagonists (though I'm speculating that Bellamy is going to lose pretty horribly somehow in his battle royale). Of course, we have several fodder characters, but there isn't one who doesn't seem interesting in some way, which I accredit to Oda's great knack for characterization.
All in all, not too much happens in this chapter and I'm assuming next week we'll be catching up with Zoro and the rest of the Strawhats again. Though the build up has taken a while, I'm really enjoying this arc and all the possibilities that can come from it and really look for a grand pay off in the vein of the Alabaster arc.
Thanks to Mangastream's scanlation for the images, but remember to check out VIZ Media's Shonen Jump online subscriptions to support the original author, Eiichiro Oda.
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