Single Episode Write-up: One Piece 204

I’m still stuck on the G-8/Navarone arc, which I know a lot of die-hard One Piece fans don’t really care for since it’s an anime-only arc. Oh no, it wasn’t in the manga, how dare those awful people at Toei mess with the purity of our story! The nerve of them! Blah blah blah.

I think fandom should take a chill pill. If you don’t like it, don’t watch it. I know I fall into the same trap myself, but people in fandom get upset really easily.  It’s a only cartoon (or television show, movie, book, what have you) — it was meant to entertain us, not make us want to hurt ourselves or other people.

Anyway, this episode finds the Strawhat Pirates breaking up into two teams: one to recover the gold that they obtained in Skypiea and the other to recover the waver that Nami hid somewhere in the island. While she and Sanji go off to recover the waver, Luffy, Zoro, Robin and Usopp head toward the section of the base where they believe the treasure is stashed. They reach the vault without any problem, and didn’t realize that the most elite unit of the Marines were lying in wait.

What stuck out most for me in this episode was how Usopp basically took charge of delegating the teams and telling them what to do. While Usopp has his own delusions of being the captain, this isn’t the first time that Luffy has let him essentially lead the rest of the crew. It’s not uncommon for Luffy to sit back and let his crewmates do what they do best, be it navigating through dangerous waters or hatching the best plan for escape.

Luffy does take a very laissez-faire attitude as a captain. Part of it is, admittedly, because he’s lazy and would rather let other people do the heavy lifting. But even in earlier arcs, he knew what kind and type of people he needed to make up his crew. Luffy picked all of them based on what talents they could bring to the table, if less so for their individual personality traits. He lets each member do what she or he does best, but supporting them if they need the extra boost.

A friend linked to this article on what differentiates a good boss from an amazing boss and it’s really hilarious to think that Luffy does embody a lot of the qualities that makes a good–>amazing boss. Though the article is couched in business management speak, those are qualities that you’d expect anyway from any leader. Luffy doesn’t need an MBA to make sure that his crew works together optimally yet still maintain their personal sense of satisfaction.

(What a nerdy write-up. It didn’t have any screenshots either.)