At this point, every anime enthusiast, whether a newbie or a veteran, has heard about One Piece; and with all the buzz going around lately (especially in our Hive) we’ve been thinking about how to tackle this show for those who may want to give it a try. Starting a show 1002 episodes in (going on 1003) is daunting, so lo and behold! Here’s your One Piece Watch Guide! A definitive breakdown of the hit anime to make your viewing experience as smooth and simple as possible! And yes, with the amount we talk about One Piece, we’re surprised it’s taken us this long to get to this too! If we put in all the information about One Piece into a single article, we don’t doubt that we’d lose all you potential watchers before we could even begin, thus without further ado, Welcome to East Blue (and part one of our One Piece Watch Guide)!
So let’s set sail where it all begins! Our beloved oddball crew found its beginnings in very same waters as legendary Pirate King, Gol D. Roger. So jump into the very first saga and have a look at all the action-packed, emotionally-charged and laughter-filled adventures in the East Blue sea.
Essential, Quintessential One Piece
Romance Dawn Arc (Episodes 1-3): The dawn of our adventure is here! Meet Straw Hat Luffy as he begins his search for his pirate crew.
Orange Town Arc (Episodes 4-8): Fumbling around and trying to get his bearings, Luffy is still learning the ropes of piracy.
Syrup Village Arc (Episodes 9-18): With growing pains, the Straw Hat family begins to grow into something resembling a pirate crew.
Baratie Arc (Episodes 19-30): Get ready for some feels and a real look into who the Straw Hats are for the very first time. This is where One Piece begins to get real and we had to take a minute. Of course, this amuse-bouche did little to prepare us for what came next.
Arlong Park Arc (Episodes 31-45): Arguably the best storyline in the East Blue Saga, get ready for the stakes to be raised in Arlong Park. We finally see our crew together in the midst of some serious drama and action, and it totally smells like team spirit!
Buggy Side Story Arc (Episodes 46-47): Buggy the Clown makes (reads: attempts) a comeback. This may seem like filler on first glance but it’s relevant because almost everything in One Piece is relevant.
Loguetown Arc (Episodes 48-53): Our final stop before going up Reverse Mountain and finally reaching the sea where pirates go to make their fortune, the Grand Line.
Bop It, Whip It, and Skip It!
One Piece OVA, Defeat Him! The Pirate Ganzack: It has absolutely nothing to do with the Toei Anime and it isn’t filler either. So why is it on this list? Because it’s the first instance of One Piece being adapted into anime ever. We don’t recommend watching it for the main storyline, but if you’re the sentimental type then dive in because this is where our characters came to life for the very first time.
Emergency Planning a Perfect Strategy for One Piece: Unless you plan on skipping the first five episodes (we suggest you don’t) don’t bother with this one, it’s essentially a recap that was released with the TV Special.
Loguetown (Episodes 50-51): Both Usopp Vs. Daddy The Parent! Showdown At High Noon! (Ep. 50) and Fiery Cooking Battle? Sanji vs The Beautiful Chef (Ep.51) don’t add anything to the storyline but they fill out the Loguetown arc’s continuity quite neatly so we suggest giving them a watch if you have the time.
Warship Island (Episodes 54-61): After Loguetown, we finally see what exactly would happen if one were to end up in the Calm Belt (albeit, briefly) as well as a mini adventure before the Grand Line. It’s not even a little bit essential to the main storyline but who are we to stop you if you want more of the Straw Hats?
Adventure in the Ocean’s Navel: Aired after episode 52 of the anime, this is the first TV Special of the anime. It’s not relevant to the story but check it out if you have the time! It’s only one episode so it’s easy viewing.
Jango’s Dance Carnival: This is a short that was released alongside the second theatrical film, it mostly serves to showcase a song and has nothing to do with the main story. Skip it, you won’t be missing out.
The East Blue Takeaway
We know we haven’t given you guys a whole lot to skip, but we’re just starting out. East Blue is all about introducing characters, laying the groundwork for world-building, and setting up the Straw Hats for their grand adventure on the Grand Line (and hooking you with cool action and endearing punchlines).
However, don’t sweat the lack of filler! It’s a saga so delightful, that you won’t even notice its length as you binge through (let’s be honest, there’s no such thing as casual viewing with this one). But we promise, as you immerse yourselves and we move to the Grand Line, we’ll do our best to streamline our guide for you so you don’t have to worry about irrelevant things clogging up your One Piece experience.
And that’s all for the adventures in East Blue! We’ve left the movies for another day, but it’s okay because everything that has to do with canon and the main storyline is right here! And if you follow our guide, odds are you won’t suffer the pacing issues (*sigh* haters gonna hate) of One Piece.
Stay tuned for what comes next in our One Piece Watch Guide because we’re going to be looking at the first half of the Grand Line: Paradise (is it really, though?) !
So are you setting out with the Straw Hats? Do you have opinions on the filler or tips for our guide? Let us know in the comments below!