One Piece's Going Merry was recently spotted as Netflix's live-action series has apparently recreated the vessel that the Straw Hat Pirates' first used to sail through the Grand Line, but it seems as if the ship has hit the news once again in a very unexpected way. Apparently, in a recent series of events that involved illegal fishing expeditions, the ship used by the lawbreakers held a very similar name to the one that Luffy and his crew members would first use in their bid to make Monkey the King of the Pirates while achieving their own dreams.
In Japan, the Yomogita Harbor in the Aomori Prefecture had several illegal fishermen poaching a number of "sea cucumbers", which netted them close to $30,000 USD. The boat itself was labeled as the "Going Merry" clearly showing that the fishermen who were pinched by authorities were also fans of the Shonen franchise created by Eiichiro Oda. With five of the men being arrested and four escaping, only to be picked up a few weeks later, it definitely proves that anime can end up in some of the most unexpected places in the real world, outside of television series that adapt shows to live-action.
The Going Merry was first acquired by Luffy and his early crew following the addition of Usopp to their band of merry swashbucklers, being gifted to them for saving the village from one of the most dangerous pirates that they encountered to date. Though the Straw Hat Pirates would eventually lose the Going Merry thanks to their dangerous adventures, a new ship was acquired in the Thousand Sunny, which they have continued to sail to this day in both the anime and the manga of One Piece.
Though the Thousand Sunny has survived the nefarious villains that the Straw Hats have encountered so far, the War For Wano Arc certainly seems like an arc that might sink the ship once and for all. Luffy and his friends are attempting to free the citizens of the isolated nation of Wano Country from the likes of Kaido and his Beast Pirates, with the war threatening to change the world of the Grand Line forever.
What do you think of this hilarious reference to the Going Merry? Feel free to let us know in the comments or hit me up directly on Twitter @EVComedy to talk all things comics, anime, and the world of the Straw Hat Pirates.