For celebrating the start of Toriko anime, a Special Collaboration with One Piece was made. A 1 hour special serving as Episode 1 of Toriko and Episode 492 for One Piece.
Toriko Episode 1: “Arrival on Gourmet Island! The Gourmet Hunter Toriko Appears!”
One Piece Episode 492: “The Strongest Tag-Team! Luffy and Toriko’s Hard Struggle!”
Just like the description says above, this collaboration special is to promote the beginning anime series of Mitsutoshi Shimabukuro’s manga Toriko. With the help of Eiichiro Oda’s series One Piece, Luffy and his friends will be introduced to the hungry Gourmet Hunter Toriko and his friends and fight man-eating animals. These two Shonen Jump characters will bring in the action and hunger for any fan. This special is split into two parts; one for Toriko and the other for One Piece. Even though Part 1 is technically the first episode of Toriko, it doesn’t appear on the FUNimation DVDs; this also includes part 2. You can, however, watch parts for free at Crunchyroll. I will leave the links to the bottom of the review. This review may have minor spoilers.
Part 1 Plot:
The episode begins with a celebration of the first episode Toriko thanks to Luffy and Toriko. They tell the audience that this will be a great show. Once the celebraion is over, the anime begins. The story begins with the Straw Hat crew looking for an island to stock up on food and water. As the members are starving, they come across a mysterious island. Luffy with his friends Nami, Sanji and Chopper decides to explore the island while the remaining crew protect the ship. While exploring, Chopper gets taken by a mysterious man named Toriko and plots to eat him. Luffy goes and tries to save him and leads to a short, brief fight. After clearing up the misunderstanding, Luffy befriends Toriko and his friend cook, Komatsu.
After watching this episode, I really enjoyed this collaboration. I find it pretty creative to combine the two most hungriest eaters of Shonen Jump and bring them together. Both Luffy and Toriko were funny and they make a good team. I am a huge One Piece fan but I have not yet got into the Toriko series but I did, however, enjoyed this episode. I did notice that these two had similarities. Both series have the hungry, but strong protagonist, their world’s consist of exploring, and they have unique animals. I didn’t have any problems on getting use to Toriko. He was a fun character like Luffy but yet he showed respect for food by saying thank you.
Besides the protagonists, we did get some screen time for the secondary characters. We meet Komatsu, a little man that follows Toriko on his journey; he also a cook. I felt like he was combination of Usopp and Sanji. He knew how to prepare food but he also gets scared when he faces a powerful animal. For Luffy’s friends, the only characters that most of the attention is Nami, Sanji, and Chopper. The rest are waiting at the ship hungry. I felt like this episode wanted to focus on the attention on Luffy and Toriko and also a little bit of Komatsu as a way to bring attention to the Toriko anime.
Part 2 Plot:
Continuing after part 1 of the episode, Nami and Komatsu gets kidnapped by mysterious animals called Cocoalas, koala bears that are violent, and they get taken to their leader which lives at the top of the highest mountain of Hungry-la island. It is up to Luffy, Toriko, Sanji and Chopper to save their friends from these creatures. Toriko mentions that at the top of the moutain lies the delicious but giant fruit called the Multifruit. On the way, Luffy and his friends come across Toriko’s allies, Coco, Sunny, and Rin (this before we meet Zebra).
Much like the previous episode, we get an introduction to new characters of Toriko. Toriko’s friends are unique by design and attacks. I like Coco and his abilities which involves with poison. It is a shame though that we only get to see them for a bit. It would have been nice to see them in action along with the team. The same goes with the rest of the Straw Hats at the ship. They serve as the comedy element of the episode as they starve and make funny comments on Luffy’s delay. The final battle with the Cocoala leader was a fun and satisfying battle. Once again, we do see the teamwork Luffy and Toriko and we see the epic finale.
Would I recommend this special? Personally, I would definitely recommend this anime special to anyone that likes One Piece or Toriko or anyone that likes Shonen Jump. I am a One Piece fan but I really enjoyed seeing Toriko in this special. I throught that animals were interesting and creative and I also like crossovers. I think this special did a great job on introducing to newcomers to the Toriko series. I wish that FUNimation got the license to dub the special considering that both of these anime already licensed by FUNimation. Have you seen this episode? If so, what do you think of it? Comment below your thoughts. Once again, if you wish to watch it, I left the links to both parts below. This anime was fun to watch. No doubt about that. 😉