Netflix's live-action adaptation of One Piece was officially renewed for Season 2, which no doubt had fans cheering around the globe, and word from producers so far is that the wait for new episodes won't necessarily be too long. A creative involved with the series recently commented on how quickly new episodes could arrive, and the short answer is much sooner than we think. The answer has me wondering what could be on the way, since there are definitely lots of elements from the source material I'd like to see for the new season.
Tomorrow Studios president Becky Clements spoke to Variety and seemed full of optimism in regards to how soon it could return, at least whenever the entertainment industry strikes are resolved. Clements gave what she believed to be a "realistic" estimate of time to make episodes happen, with CEO Marty Adelstein having already said that scripts for Season 2 have already been written. In her words:
Realistically, hopefully, a year away, if we move very quickly, and that is a possibility. Somewhere between a year and 18 months, we could be ready for air.
If scripts are indeed already laid out, new episodes could be ready to binge with a Netflix subscription in a year to eighteen months. While that gives me mild concerns in some regard, I am also excited they could arrive that early.
I do imagine that, much like with Season 1, there will be changes between the live-action and anime adaptations. With content due to be cut, here are some moments off the top of my head that I think need to be seen for Season 2 of One Piece to be just as successful as the first. Keep in mind we already know everyone's favorite doctor, Chopper, is already confirmed, so he's left off the list.
Laboon The Whale
Laboon, the whale at the end of Reverse Mountain, is an absolute must to include somewhere at the beginning of One Piece Season 2. The Straw Hats' encounter with this mystical whale is quite trippy to experience from a story-telling perspective, but also gives a perfect re-introduction to Baroque Works following the slight reference to the faction in Season 1. The arc doesn't have to last as long as the anime, of course, but excluding Laboon would certainly anger long-time fans and get the season off to a rough start.
If One Piece makes it to Season 3, it's likely most of Season 2 will need to put in the legwork to cover the setup for the Arabasta War. It's one of the longer arcs of the anime and likely will be its own self-contained season. A lot can be cut from the journey to Arabasta to streamline the story, surely, but the overall details regarding Princess Vivi and her relationship with the Straw Hat pirates should be out of the way before arriving at her homeland. The Arabasta arc is an exciting tale, but if the live-action version can't make us care about the Princess and her mission, it may fall flat. Above all else, developing this storyline should be a top priority.
Dorry And Brogy
The giants on Elbaf Island are, admittedly, the most obvious chunk of content that could be chopped for Season 2. Similar to what the show did with Don Krieg in Season 1, it could be removed, and not much lost would impact the overall story. The story of Dorry and Brogy's constant battles is just so fun, however, and watching the Straw Hats fight in live-action against them, and members of Baroque Works is just such a cool visual I don't want to miss out on. With as good as this season did on CGI, I need to see Dorry and Brogy and that emotional ending to their story that made me tear up when watching the anime.
If One Piece Season 2 has these moments from the anime included and does justice to Chopper's character, I'll be one happy camper whenever new episodes arrive on Netflix. In the meantime, I still have plenty of episodes from the anime to work through if I'm ever to catch up on that 1,000+-episode count. Get a big jump on the anime by streaming on Netflix, and check out some of the other stand-alone movies available to stream as well.