I'm so excited I can barely stand it, so please bear with me if I'm more incomprehensible than normal. See, my beloved One Piece is taking a break -- a full month break, the only such break creator Eiichiro Oda has had since he began the series 12 years ago. During that break, the story is going to jump ahead two years -- two years where all the characters are training to be bigger badasses, to get ready for the second half of their adventure. This is phenomenal for several reasons:
• Although there have been 59 volumes of One Piece collected in Japan so far, it'll at least get to 60 when it collects everything before the break. AND THE STORY IS ONLY HALF WAY DONE. We theoretically have 12 more years of One Piece on the way.
• The characters -- which have only had mild clothing changes for the last 12 years -- will likely get some potentially big redesigns. At the least, they'll look older -- main character Monkey D. Luffy will now be 19.
• You know all that bullshit where the main characters in other shonen series like Naruto and Bleach and Dragonball Z and such sit around training forever before they get to a fight? Well, One Piece has never done that. And now that the characters are going to sit around and train, the author's going to skip all of that so he can get right back to the good stuff. This is one of the reasons One Piece is so fantastic.
When Dragonball had its major timeskip, the anime was rebranded as Dragonball Z. It's worth pointing out that One Piece is already nearly 50% longer than all of Dragonball and Dragonball Z combined, and it's only now doing its timeskip, so this is far more major than the DB/DBZ switchover.
Japan is already losing its mind; volumes 57 and 59 of the manga have sold 2 million copies... each. Since Japan has a population of 125 million, meaning 1.5% of the entire nation owns copies of each of those books. Just for comparison, the #1 American comic in July was Marvel's X-Men #1, which sold 140,000 copies. In the entirety of America. Don't worry about remembering these details, eventually I'll write my 10 Reasons One Piece Is the Greatest Comic Ever list, and I'll be sure to mention them again. (Via Comics Alliance)