One Piece is a steampunk manga and anime series created by artist Eiichiro Oda. It revolves around a crew of pirates led by captain Monkey D. Luffy, whose dream is to obtain the ultimate treasure One Piece that was left behind by the King of the Pirates, Gold Roger.
One Piece is set in a fictional world, where pirates run rampant in an era known as the "Great Age of Piracy". This age was inaugurated with the execution of Gold Roger, the Pirate King. With his last words, Roger declared that all of the treasure he had collected was up for grabs, if it could be found, and that he left all of it "in one piece."
The story of One Piece focuses on the trials and tribulations of the Straw Hat Pirates, a crew led by the captain Monkey D. Luffy, as they sail the Grand Line from island to island in search of the Pirate King's great lost treasure. Unlike the traditional bloodthirsty pirate stereotype, the Straw-Hats are far truer to their ideals and are oftentimes seen helping a village rather than pillaging it. However, they are still pirates, and as such some crew members have been placed with large bounties on their heads. As of the current story arc, three of the seven pirates have bounties, with an expected eighth crew member and bounties for nearly all the crew members.
Because of its emotional story, original characters, engaging fight sequences, plot twists, sense of adventure, and a strong focus on unity and fighting for your dreams, One Piece has grown into one of the most popular shônen manga in Japan.
Since the debut of the series on television, Toei Animation has also produced seven One Piece feature films, released each spring since 2000.
In North America, the anime is currently licensed by 4Kids Entertainment. It is shown on Cartoon Network's Toonami block at 9:30pm. The show began on the UK's version of Toonami during April 2005. Since January 2, 2006, Cartoon Network has begun airing One Piece reruns on their Miguzi block. Reruns are also played on Cartoon Network's primetime slot. On February 11th, One Piece episodes on Toonami became United States English-Language Premiere Episodes, as the series was taken off the 4Kids TV schedule.
It has began screening in Australia on the Channel Ten network at 7:30am on Toasted TV.
In Singapore, the anime is licensed by Odex, which produces an English dub, not edited to the extent of the 4Kids version.
Because the One Piece manga is still ongoing, Toei Animation uses non-manga material (filler) as a way to slow down the progression of the plot. If the anime were to catch up with the manga, Toei would either have to wait for Oda to release more manga chapters, take the story in a direction independent of the manga (as was done in Rurouni Kenshin, InuYasha and Fullmetal Alchemist), or simply end it; any of these would likely damage the popularity of the series, and would not reflect well on either Toei Animation or Oda. Thus, additional material is the only viable alternative.
Fans have happened to notice that much of One Piece makes references to the works of Akira Toriyama, the famed creator of Dragon Ball Z. This is because Oda grew up watching Toriyama's work; he is now Oda's idol. Some have even called One Piece Oda's complete tribute to Akira Toriyama. References include similar character appearances and attitudes. One Piece creator Eiichiro Oda even published HIS version of a Dragon Ball graphic novel. Eiichiro Oda began his manga career at 17 and won second place at the Tezuka Manga Awards.One Piece was originally titled "Romance Dawn". "Romance Dawn" was published in two one shot story versions in Japan's Weekly Shonen Jump.