April 24, 2024

10 Best Things to Watch After Netflix’s ‘One Piece’

Netflix’s live action adaptation of One Piece is a bonafide hit, seemingly breaking the so-called “curse” of the Hollywood anime adaptation. If you watched it and enjoyed it—and perhaps even thirsted for its hot murder clown, Buggy—you might be craving something similar to watch now that you’ve finished the series. That’s especially true if you’re new to the world of One Piece, the irresistible adventure following the Straw Hat Pirates on a search for coveted treasure. Double-especially if you’re new to the world of anime in general. If either of those are the case, welcome!

While we celebrate the news that Netflix just renewed the series for a second season, we’ve rounded up a guide to projects that share similar vibes to One Piece for you to dig into next. We’ve got a little bit of everything: more One Piece media, a couple like-hearted anime series, other pirate stories that aren’t Pirates of the Caribbean, and a handful of successful adaptations of comics.

Grab some snacks (which, if you’re Luffy, would just be a giant hunk of meat), and let’s get bingeing!

One Piece (the anime)

If you finished Netflix’s One Piece and asked, “What now?” the most obvious answer would be, “Watch the anime!” It’s a good answer, too. The One Piece anime, which started in 1999, is a joy to behold. I find the early 2000s aesthetic of its early animation to be incredibly charming. But as of its most recent arc (which has lasted several years), the animation has become downright stunning.

But just like Netflix’s adaptation, the biggest asset of the One Piece anime is its voice cast. They’re so beloved, Netflix recruited the Japanese Straw Hats to voice the Japanese dub of the live action series. After all, in Japan, these voices are synonymous with these beloved characters. Mayumi Tanaka as Luffy is a treasure. Even Luffy’s little “nnnangh!” grunts will make you smile.

Streaming on Netflix, Hulu, Crunchyroll – though only Crunchyroll has the entire series, plus new episodes weekly.

One Piece (the manga)

This is where it all began. Eiichiro Oda’s manga has been running since 1997, with only three month-long breaks in those 26 years. While the anime is delightful, reading the manga addresses the anime’s biggest weakness: pacing issues. That’s why, if the length of One Piece is your primary concern, I’d direct you to the manga over the anime. The manga’s charm and brilliance speaks for itself—you’ve already dipped into the waves of shows, films, and games it has unleashed.

All chapters of One Piece are easily accessible via a subscription to the Shounen Jump app ($3.99/month).

One Piece Film: Strong World

Fathom Events

One Piece Film: Strong World (and/or One Piece Film: Red)

Perhaps you would rather dip your toe into the One Piece anime before committing to a watchdown. Assuming you have a Netflix subscription, you also have access to one of the best One Piece movies: Strong World. It’s the first movie that mangaka Eiichiro Oda produced, and it’s a great sample of the vibrant, goofy energy the anime brings. You’ll meet most of the rest of the Straw Hat crew, which does involve spoilers for the live action’s theoretical second season. You’ll also be treated to my best friend, Billy the Thunder Duck.

One Piece Film: Red is perhaps better as a “movie-movie,” but in its parade of character cameos, the film assumes you know more about the world than you would have learned from the live action. But it is a musical which centers on a film-only character, and it’s the most consolidated screen time Shanks has gotten (so far!) outside of the East Blue arc.

One Piece Film: Strong World is streaming on Netflix. One Piece Film: Red is streaming on Crunchyroll and purchasable on Vudu and Apple TV.

Our Flag Means Death

If you’re looking for another set of empathetic oddball pirates, look no further than Max’s absolutely incredible series Our Flag Means Death. OFMD actually checks a lot of the same boxes that One Piece does: It’s laugh-out-loud funny, incredibly heartfelt, and its protagonist is a pirate captain who no one initially takes seriously. Also, these pirates are gay and entangle themselves in a love story for the ages. (Zoro is also gay in my headcanon, though.)

Our Flag Means Death is streaming on Max.

A still from Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

When Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood came out in 2009, it was widely hailed as the best anime ever made. It speaks eons to its strength that the same argument can still be made nearly 15 years later. (Be careful to not confuse Brotherhood with the series simply named Fullmetal Alchemist, which was made before author Hiromu Arakawa finished the manga.)

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is the story of two teenage brothers, Edward and Alphonse, who lost significant chunks of their bodies while committing the taboo of using alchemy to resurrect their dead mother. Heavy start, right? Like One Piece, Fullmetal will make you laugh and cry. It’s also a powerful, heartwarming story about the power of friendship—as corny as that sounds. At 64 episodes, it’s also significantly shorter than One Piece, Naruto, Dragon Ball (Z), and the like.

Streaming on Crunchyroll and Hulu

Adventure Time and Fionna and Cake

Speaking of shows that are virtuosic explorations of the power of friendship featuring an ensemble cast: Adventure Time! Adventure Time remains beloved for a reason. The series begins as something goofy and delightful. But eventually, storylines spring up and surprise you by stabbing you right in the heart. There are moments in Adventure Time I will never forget, because of the show’s uncanny ability to express profound sentiments with cutting simplicity.

For those who have already dug into Adventure Time’s vast buffet, an excellent new series about the gender-swapped Fionna and Cake premiered on the same day of Netflix’s One Piece.

Adventure Time is streaming on Hulu, Max, Sling TV, and Amazon Prime. Fionna and Cake is streaming on Max.

Chainsaw Man

At first, it doesn’t appear like Chainsaw Man and One Piece have much in common. After all, Chainsaw Man is a much darker, “grittier” show. (One of the main characters is even inspired by Eric Cartman.) But the two series connect in a very subtle, important way: They both explore how important and difficult it is to connect with other people in times of hardship and trauma. In Chainsaw Man, which takes place in a version of 1990s Tokyo imperiled by demons who gain power through fear, that conscientiousness is much harder. It’s also blisteringly funny, as exemplified by the best scene of boob fondling in media history.

Chainsaw Man is also significantly gorier than the One Piece anime and manga. But you’re coming from the version where Zoro chops a guy in half. You’ll be fine.

Streaming on Crunchyroll and Hulu

A still from Alice in Borderland.

Alice in Borderland

Astonishingly enough, One Piece was not Netflix’s first live action adaptation of a manga to get Rotten Tomato scores with approval ratings in the 80s and 90s. That honor goes to sci-fi thriller Alice in Borderland, which is kind of like Ready Player One gone to hell. It’s tonally quite different from One Piece, but it’s an enthralling and addictive show. Alice in Borderland also has the peculiar standing of being more well-known than its anime counterpart, a mid-2010s ordeal which condensed the then-unfinished series into only three episodes.

Streaming on Netflix

The Umbrella Academy

Netflix has yet another successful comic adaptation among its offerings: The Umbrella Academy. Instead of coming from a Japanese manga, however, The Umbrella Academy’s run of Dark Horse comics were created and written by My Chemical Romance frontman Gerard Way. It also stars Elliot Page, whose character comes out as trans to mirror the actor’s own journey. The Umbrella Academy is part superhero story, part murder mystery—but most importantly, it’s an enjoyable watch.

Streaming on Netflix

A still from Muppet Treasure Island

Muppet Treasure Island

We all know that when Americans think “pirate movie,” we think Pirates of the Caribbean. The live action One Piece seems aware of this, too. So instead of starting on a journey you already know will end in disappointment, I instead offer you the myriad delights of Muppet Treasure Island. Look me in the eye and tell me you do not want to see Tim Curry as Long John Silver, singing about being a “professional pirate” while starring opposite Kermit the Frog in a tricorn hat. I dare you.

Streaming on Disney+, purchasable on YouTube, Vudu, Amazon Prime, and Apple TV

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