The New Arrival of an Old Favorite
A pre-time-skip adventure comes to the silver screen this fall! As One Piece gets ready to celebrate its 1000th episode, it is bringing both subbed and dubbed versions of the movie One Piece Film: Strong World to theaters in November from Fathom Events. Dubbed showings will be available on November 7th, and subtitled tickets go on sale on the 9th. Why does the name Strong World sound familiar, even though the release is upcoming? This movie was released in 2009, but it never made it to theaters in the United States. Honey's Anime got an early peek at the English dub, and here's what to expect!
More Info & Tickets: fathomevents.com/onepiece
ONE PIECE FILM: STRONG WORLD | Official Fathom Events Trailer | Coming to Theaters 11/7 & 11/9
A Strong World Waits for No Man to Catch Up
Who is Shiki?
Strong World features a new pirate who makes an enemy of the Straw Hat pirates: Shiki the Golden Lion. Unknown to our favorite pirate crew, this ruthless mastermind is a pirate legend and has a decades-long plot that is just now coming to fruition. He dresses in yellow and has swords for legs.
With the power of his float-float fruit, he can make inanimate objects and himself fly, as long as he wills it to happen. With this power, he rules an island that he plucked up from the ground with and has been levitating in the air, presumably for years. He controls all manner of ground manipulation and other nonliving items, making him a brutal enemy for the Straw Hats.
The Straw Hats Pirates v. Shiki The Golden Lion
Strong World opens not with Monkey D. Luffy but with Monkey D. Garp. Legendary Pirate, Shiki the Golden Lion, has cut off his shackles along with his legs and escaped prison. Sometime after his escape, the Straw Hats sail the ocean while reading about attacks that are taking place in the East Bule. While contemplating going back to the East Blue to help, they run into Shiki, and he takes far too much interest in Nami's navigation skills. Shiki promises the crew a swift trip back to the East Blue, but instead, he kidnaps Nami.
Nami is not the only prize Shiki is after. In addition to taking Nami, Shiki is also the mastermind behind the attacks back in the East Blue. Shiki quickly finds himself in a fight with the Straw Hats and crushes them. Nami finds herself in an Arlong-esque situation when she joins Shiki's crew to protect the people she cares about with both the Straw Hats and her family back in the East Blue. Luffy takes her leaving because he is too weak to protect her as an infuriating challenge, and very quickly, the Straw Hats are barreling back in for another round with Shiki and getting their navigator back.
There's More At Stake Than Meets the Eye
More than the attacks on the East Blue and the loss of Nami, the Straw Hats learn that Shiki is also the cause of twenty years of unrest and havoc on one of the islands that he causes to float perpetually. Decades ago, when Shiki took power, the young men and women of the village on the island in question, and they work at his palace, which is on another floating island. These impoverished people like with toxic disease, due to Shiki harvesting the plant that acts as an antidote and their loved ones never return home. After Shiki makes a demonstration of destroying their hometown, the Straw Hats act.
The Straw Hats Raise Hell and Get Back to the Sunny
One Piece is many things. It is ominously long, has a lot of comedy, and more than that it is a shounen lover's dream. Strong World does not disappoint in the action department. Faced with a kidnapped navigator and a kidnapper who can set the earth itself upon the Straw Hats, what's a ragtag group of pirates to do? If you ever watched One Piece before, then you probably know the answer is to walk in through the front door and start dishing out some ass-kickings. Our favorite pirate crew can be destructive when they put their minds to it, which happens with gusto in Strong World.
Some of our favorite highlights are Zoro's use of the nine-sword-style technique that otherwise only shows up in the Enies Lobby arc against Kaku. Robin remains a soft-spoken assassin who can get anything done with the teamwork that her flower-flower fruit allows her to have, and we can't forget Sanji, whose diable jambe technique kicks a lot of tail. In the photo here, we show some movie-only outfits that show the straw hats mean business. One of the things that Strong World does is that it offers the feel of battle that we have come to love with any One Piece arc. That moment when the Straw Hats decide it's time to go to work is just as impressive as it ever was in this movie.
A Huge Win for Dub Fans
One Piece dub fans know the long waits between new dub content can be a long time coming. In 2018 there was a stop at dubbing episode 574, and episode 575 was not dubbed until more than a year later, so fans know how long it can be. During this time back in 2018, fans traded rumors about the next dub release, and everyone made the decision to get on with the subtitled content, or some fans quit watching One Piece for a while to let the dub get some new episodes.
Disregarding the previous wait time, there is no more waiting to be had on the Strong World adventure! It will be released in theaters in a few short weekends, no matter what voicing edition you choose! Get ready to buy cinema tickets for either the subbed or dubbed versions of this movie (or both). It isn't every year you get to see One Piece in theaters, so don't miss out!
When and Why Does This Adventure Take Place?
We know that Strong World is a pre-time-skip adventure that takes place after the Straw Hats set sail with the Thousand Sunny and gained Brook as a crew member. Safely, it can be said that it takes place after the Thriller Bark Arc in the story. There is no need to plan a rewatch to prep for this movie, because like much of One Piece, the film stands by itself. All of our favorite pre-time-skip clichés are present, and we couldn't be happier about it.
Something that is usually not discussed with Strong World is that the story is related to a little-known chapter in One Piece called chapter 0. Chapter 0 is the story of Shiki getting out of jail about twenty years previous to the current story. After that, it details his discoveries of unusual plants and animals that are the start to the plans he is launching in Strong World. We won't spoil too much of chapter 0 here, but it is worth the read if you love the worldbuilding content of One Piece!
Strong World is everything you look for in an anime movie. It has a canon plot that does not require you to watch to continue the Straw Hats' journey, new and unusual characters, improved animation, and a satisfying shounen fight. Strong World even has a strong hand in the production and making of it by the author, Eiichiro Oda, making it better than other One Piece films. Our favorite One Piece character quirks are there too! Watch Zoro have painfully bad directional senses, see Brook offer some terrible jokes involving body parts, and take note because this might be the only time we see Robin in glasses!
Stick around through the credits to see scenes from the East Blue and some of our favorite pirates. Both Ace and Whitebeard make an appearance! (*tear*) After the credits, stick around to see how the people the Straw Hats met are doing after the crazy finally comes to a stop.
Some of our favorite things about this movie being brought to the present are the funny things that we forgot about after the time skip. Luffy doesn't get tiny after using too much power anymore, and it was laughably enjoyable to see it again. We miss chibi-Luffy! More than that, Franky is more human than a cyborg at this point, and Zoro has both eyes. Usopp has not spent two years in training yet, and Sanji's chivalry/lady-crazy behavior is much more palatable before his years spent with Ivankov. The last thing we wanted to say was to pause and enjoy those moments long gone in the current Wano Arc!
Strong World was initially released in 2009, but this is the first (and probably only) time available in US theaters. Though we loved the subbed version, there is a lot to enjoy about the dubbed version that is not possible with a sub. Puns and quick jokes are easier to catch, and you don't have to read subtitles in the theater. No matter which edition you think you will watch next, we encourage you to take advantage of this movie during its limited showing in theaters at the end of 2021. Are you looking forward to the sub or the dub more? Let us know in the comments!