One Piece: 5 Wano arc episodes where fans loved the animation (and 5 where Toei fumbled)

Wano Country is a bright and colorful landscape (Image Credits: Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, Viz Media, One Piece)
Wano Country is a bright and colorful landscape (Image Credits: Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha, Viz Media, One Piece)

Ever since One Piece arrived in the Wano Country arc, Toei Animation has seen plenty of highs and lows.

Without a doubt, the anime has never looked more beautiful. The rich color pallet is offset by fluid animation. Take a look at the above image featuring Kozuki Hiyori. Toei Animation put in so much time and effort in that shot. It's a rare moment when the anime is superior to its source material.

However, for every critically praised episode, there are slower paced ones with several issues. Toei Animation is not exactly MAPPA or even Madhouse. One Piece fans will notice whenever something is off standard.

Five times where Toei provided great animation for One Piece in the Wano arc

5) Episode 894


This is simply a delightful episode to watch. Both Luffy and Tama explore their relationship with Ace. Viewers also get to see the Flower Capital in full color. The art direction is simply quite stunning to look at.

Aya Komaki put in a lot of work as the episode director. Whether it's the flowing rivers or the mountainous landscape montages, viewers can only wish that Wano Country was real. This would be a great vacation spot if it wasn't controlled by Kaido and his forces.

4) Episode 995


After infiltrating Onigashima, the Red Scabbards finally made their way towards Kaido. They managed to cut down every Beasts Pirate in their path. With that said, the episode's budget clearly went into this moment.

One Piece fans get to enjoy a cinematic experience unlike anything else in the series. It only lasts for a minute, but these clips are worth every second. Multiple perspectives are used in this scene.

The animators went for a stylistic choice of using monochromatic colors, with the exception of red blood platter. Everything is crisp and clean, especially when Kin'emon takes out multiple people in seconds.

3) Episode 966


For the first time in the entire series, One Piece fans get to see Gol D. Roger in action. His legendary clash with Whitebeard will forever be remembered for its smooth animated sequence.

From camera shakes to streaks of colorful lightning, this short fight conveys a sense of great power. Roger and Whitebeard truly broke the scale of the One Piece universe. Toei Animation did not disappoint with the fight scene.

It's everything that fans want and more. Anything less wouldn't have done these renowned fighters justice.

2) Episode 1017


One Piece fans were highly anticipating the rooftop battle. The Worst Generation finally proved themselves against the Yonko.

Toei Animation made sure the episode would go down in history. Each attack is beautifully drawn with fluid animation. This was most apparent when Luffy hit Kaido with Gomu Gomu no Kong Gatling.

Every single frame looks sharp in this particular fight. The studio knew that some One Piece fans waited decades for this scene, so they delivered in a magnificent way.

1) Episode 1015


There was so much hype for this One Piece episode. Without a shadow of a doubt, the ending will send chills down every fan's spine. The animation standards were extremely high in the final scene. Each and every frame has several levels of detail, so it's worth a rewatch.

Luffy and the rest of his allies made it to the Skull Dome rooftop, only to find the battered and beaten Scabbards. The Straw Hat decided to give Kaido a taste of his own medicine, smashing him into the ground with his Red Roc technique.

Right before that, the emotional stakes are built up with movie quality montages. Viewers are reminded why Luffy is fighting to protect Wano Country. One Piece fans will likely watch it again multiple times. This episode is truly the visual masterpiece of the entire series.

Five times where One Piece fans didn't like what they were seeing in Wano arc

5) Episode 934


This is the episode where Zoro duels Kamazou. It takes place near the Oihagi Bridge in the Ringo region.

More than a few One Piece fans will take issue with this episode's placement. Zoro's main attacks have visually striking animation. However, that isn't the main issue, but rather the way it's used. It can be a little too much at times.

Some fans believe the battle looks more like Dragon Ball Z than One Piece. The explosive aura seems out of place here. Zoro is simply a powerful swordsman, not a planet destroyer like Vegeta.

4) Episode 1018

Unfortunately, the hot streak of rooftop scenes came to an end here. One Piece Episode 1018 starts off with Luffy punching Kaido for two whole minutes. It also takes forever for him to get back up.

This entire sequence feels like nothing more than filler. Viewers already knew that Kaido wasn't going down that easily. What also doesn't help is the CGI dragon falling down. The overall animation wasn't quite up to par with the previous episodes, but that can't be helped.

3) Episode 918


Choreography has never been the strongest aspect of the One Piece series. Ashura Doji's fight with Inuarashi makes it very obvious.

These swordsmen trade the blandest looking blows with each other, with very few counters or strategies. Even worse, there are too many closeups to hide the lack of real action. There isn't much going on in this scene.

Rurouni Kenshin and Samurai Champloo are good examples of how sword fights should be animated.

2) Episode 1007


The Onigashima Raid is underway as the samurai fights off Kaido's army. In the meantime, several frames are focused on Queen's dancing and Yamato's obsession with Oden.

There's a reason why this episode is rated poorly on websites like IMDB. Toei Animations spends too much time with unnecessary flashbacks. One Piece fans have already seen Oden's scenes multiple times by now.

The pacing really hurts the episode, since the studio keeps reusing the same exact clips. Despite the high quality animation, they keep taking shortcuts by padding out the remaining time. Of course, One Piece fans didn't let this go unnoticed.

1) Episode 903


Luffy must take on a powerful sumo wrestler in the very early stages of the Wano Country arc. Needless to say, Toei Animation really stretched out this scene as long as they possibly could, which makes it seem lazy.

Far too much time is spent on still-reaction shots with nothing happening. This entire fight could've been shortened altogether. Luffy also looks very weak by taking so long to deal with Yokozuna Urashima.

Many fans argue this is why the anime should be seasonal. Toei Animation would be able to contain multiple chapters in a single episode.

Note: This article reflects the writer's personal views.

Disclaimer: All external media in this article are the property of their respective owners and Sportskeeda claims no ownership of the same.

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Edited by Sijo Samuel Paul
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