One Piece may be a series meant for kids, but the story has roped in fans of all ages. Given its core demographic, the Straw Hats don't take part in risqué events very often, but One Piece has explored some dark topics before. In fact, such a story went live over the weekend, but anime-only viewers will not know how dark episode 908 should have been.
And why is that? Well, it all comes down to a bit of censorship. It turns out one of the Wano arc's most controversial manga moments was soften in the anime, and fans have questions about the edit.
For those unaware, One Piece put out a new episode this weekend. The update followed the Straw Hats as they nabbed some food for their friends. Given Wano's extreme wealth disparity, the villagers of Okobore Town have been starving for some time. Luffy manages to send them a ship of food all thanks to Tama, but the town was in dire straits before the pirate arrived.
In the manga, the lead up to Luffy's gift was hard to watch. All of the villagers were seen slumping around the town eating what they could. For children, they were seen crying in hunger while their parents scolded them with tears in their eyes... and that's not the most upsetting part.
The saddest panel came when a look at an older woman dressed in a patchwork yukata. She has a starving baby in hand, and the lady is preparing to kill the child with a knife to put them out of their misery. Across from her, an old man is seen kneeling in prayer as he prepares to hang himself, but they are stopped by a neighbor when the food arrives.
Both of these dark scenes were cut from the anime's latest episode. The lady was shown with the child, but there was no knife in sight. As for the man, he continued praying but without a noose before him. The devastating scene was soften for its TV debut, and some fans questioned the decision to take the edge of Wano's injustice. But given the One Piece's main demographic, you can see why infanticide and suicide would be touchy.
Did you see this censorship coming...? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to talk all things comics and anime!
Eiichiro Oda's One Piece first began serialization in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump in 1997. It has since been collected into over 80 volumes, and has been a critical and commercial success worldwide with many of the volumes breaking printing records in Japan. The manga has even set a Guinness World Record for the most copies published for the same comic book by a single author, and is the best-selling manga series worldwide with over 430 million copies sold. The series still ranked number one in manga sales in 2018, which surprised fans of major new entries.