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Ambitious Minnow

One Piece

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First off, hello to anyone out there reading this post, I just got started with the forum, and definitely have high hopes for it!

 

I got started many years back with the Sword of Truth series, and then found Ayn Rand novels via becoming more familiar with the writer and his philosophy.

 

I thought the best place to start as I expect to get some worthwhile data from this sight would be to offer something I think holds exemplary Objectivist value, but that many of you will have missed.  So here goes.    =)

 

One Piece.  Yes, I know, it's an anime, which some of you may see as a cartoon, but I think it may be one of the best objectivist stories/adventures out there, and I think many people have missed that.

 

If you have some experience with One Piece, I would love to know your opinion on that!  If you don't have any experience with it, well, I suggest you give it a shot.  It will start a little slow, and again, it's animated, but don't be decieved, you will thank me later.

 

Cheers!

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Welcome to the forum.

 

While I haven't seen (or heard of) One Piece, there have been a couple animated series which I have enjoyed: Reign, the Conqueror; and Ghost in the Shell. They don't really have themes similar to Rand's novels, but I can imagine many Objectivists liking both.

 

Reign is a highly stylized "re-imagining" mini-series of the life of Alexander the Great, and has both Aristotle and Plato as characters. Ghost in the Shell is a police detective series with an overarching storyline that tackles the difference between "artificial" intelligence and human intelligence, and asks seriously, "Where and what is our soul?" I enjoyed both of these series, but that is about the extent of my anime experience.

 

What is it that you liked about One Piece?

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Welcome to the forum.

 

While I haven't seen (or heard of) One Piece, there have been a couple animated series which I have enjoyed: Reign, the Conqueror; and Ghost in the Shell. They don't really have themes similar to Rand's novels, but I can imagine many Objectivists liking both.

 

Reign is a highly stylized "re-imagining" mini-series of the life of Alexander the Great, and has both Aristotle and Plato as characters. Ghost in the Shell is a police detective series with an overarching storyline that tackles the difference between "artificial" intelligence and human intelligence, and asks seriously, "Where and what is our soul?" I enjoyed both of these series, but that is about the extent of my anime experience.

I've never seen the series, but I loved the Ghost in the Shell movies. The first one is the best movie I've ever seen on the subject of AI.

The best anime TV series I've ever seen is Attack on Titan. Highly recommend it. I'm also liking Monster, six episodes into it.

Comedies, on the other hand, might be tough if you don't speak Japanese. One exception is Blue Lagoon, the English spoken version is actually even better than the original. It's ridiculously funny.

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I loved the Ghost in the Shell movies.

I was going to say, "I can't wait for the new one," but it was apparently released since I last looked into it -- just not yet in America. Have you seen it, Ghost in the Shell: Arise (unless you weren't implying that you speak Japanese)?

 

Thanks for the recommendations. I tried a few (now forgotten) anime movies or series after Ghost in the Shell, but since I wasn't already an anime fan I think it ruined my standards by setting them too high. Although, now that I think of it, I did enjoy the Cowboy Bebop movie, and at least a few of the episodes (some were just stupid).

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Ghost In The Shell is great. Its probably the most thoughtful series I have watched.

 

I thought One Piece was a satire though. I heard there was a guy who wields one of his three swords with his mouth.

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I was going to say, "I can't wait for the new one," but it was apparently released since I last looked into it -- just not yet in America. Have you seen it, Ghost in the Shell: Arise (unless you weren't implying that you speak Japanese)?

 

Thanks for the recommendations. I tried a few (now forgotten) anime movies or series after Ghost in the Shell, but since I wasn't already an anime fan I think it ruined my standards by setting them too high. Although, now that I think of it, I did enjoy the Cowboy Bebop movie, and at least a few of the episodes (some were just stupid).

I haven't seen the new Ghost in the Shell series yet. As far as speaking Japanese, that would still be a little bit of an overstatement. I understand a lot of Japanese, but I'm still learning. Speaking it is still a little tricky.

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Some things I love about One Piece:

The main characters are not brought together for one central mission, to save the world, or to benefit anyone else.  Each joins the crew with an absolute mission of their own, to be the best at one thing or another, or to further their own dream, and the 'captain' wouldn't have it any other way.

The way the crew roams the world, freely, and to experience all the awe and wonder of the world around them.

Although some would think the World Government is an enemy or antagonist in the show, it's really more like they are just in the way, just an afterthought to be bypassed and dismissed by the main characters.  They don't subscribe to the ideas of the world government, but aren't all caught up in that denial either, they just keep on doing what they do.

Combine the spirit of One Piece and the ideas in Atlas Shrugged in your mind, and feel unstoppable, a cool feeling.

 

@Hairnet - There is indeed a character who wields his third sword with his mouth, and he is awesome.  At first you're like, in your mouth, really?  Soon after though, you develope a deep respect for his style.  =)

 

While I do indeed like many animes, many are about self sacrifice, honor, and duty.  One Piece is about Freedom, Honesty and following your Ambitions, which I think makes it Objectivist Gold.

Edited by Ambitious Minnow

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Anime:

Rurouni Kenshin: Trust & Betrayal (Assassin finding his humanity, the whole thing is a piece of art, 8.6 on IMDB)

Legend of the Galactic Heroes (Art of War, Sci-fi Romance of the Three Kingodoms, Democracy vs Dictatorship)

 

Manga:

Sanctuary (Closest thing to Atlas Shrugged for anime/manga, great plot)

Berserk (Top quality dark fantasy)

Death Note (Top quality detective thriller)

 

Also for OP, if you like One Piece, you will enjoy TTGL if you haven't seen it yet.

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Anime:

Rurouni Kenshin: Trust & Betrayal (Assassin finding his humanity, the whole thing is a piece of art, 8.6 on IMDB)

Legend of the Galactic Heroes (Art of War, Sci-fi Romance of the Three Kingodoms, Democracy vs Dictatorship)

 

Manga:

Sanctuary (Closest thing to Atlas Shrugged for anime/manga, great plot)

Berserk (Top quality dark fantasy)

Death Note (Top quality detective thriller)

 

Also for OP, if you like One Piece, you will enjoy TTGL if you haven't seen it yet.

The Death Note anime is pretty good too. I even liked the movie.

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Oh yeah, the anime of DN, now that you remind me I would say it's epic scenes and music would put it on a higher tier than the original manga.

 

The live action movie now, most live action adaptation of anime/manga makes me barf.

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This is something aside (since I've never engaged in the never-ending episode monster that is One Piece) but I think that the most Objectivist anime in terms of its themes of individualism and the importance of human effort and will is Gurren Lagann... As long as you ignore the pure irrationallism and irrationality of the entire series. Fullmetal Alchemist also has something to be said for it (Greed in the Brotherhood version is extremely capitalistic).

 

I think that the anime with the best moral dilemmas, which I would love an Objectivist approach to, is Fate/Zero, which is simply amazing in how it portrays different views of morality.

 

Evanglion is my favorite series out of all Television and film, but it's purely existentialist, which does have a few ties to Objectivism, but it would be easy to stretch them in this case.

Edited by Kierkegaard

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Hmmm, if memory serves Gurren Lagann itself isn't irrational by any account. The fault in the show I think might tick off Objectivist is the slogan "Go beyond the impossible and kick reason to the curb!" But then by "reason" the show really meant "excuses".

 

"There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but the view is always the same".

 

Since there is only one objective reality, then by the standard of reason there is theoretically one perfect philosophic system that reflects all facet of the true state of the world.

 

Rand's Objectivism represents the largest formal effort to uncover this objective philosophic system, but any author or artist that sticks to their principles and follow the path of reason will in their own way glimpse and reflect a part of that system in their work.

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I'm not sure if you're remembering important parts of Gurrenn Lagann. The preferred method of facing one's problems is to charge head first willing and fighting against what opposes you as hard as you can, not as smart as you can. Consistently just through sheer will power the heroes win against impossible odds, their rejection of reason going so far as for Simon to go ahead and endanger the universe even when it is explicitly stated that he knows its destruction is inevitable if he proceeds. 

 

There's also the fact that throughout the entire series neither Simon nor Kamina have any clue what their doing. Gurren Lagann is created through Kamina wanting to "transform" and smashing Lagann through the top of Gurren without any knowledge that it would work. Every stupid idea that the main characters try works because they "will" hard enough, and the most rational plan throughout the entire series, the elaborate plan by Simon's partner to escape the anti-spiral forces, is shown to be inferior to charging head on into danger.

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Those character charging head first fighting against impossible odds is the main theme and part of the charm of that series.

 

And that choice is rational considering their alternatives. Now if it's such that they are facing two choices, where choice one have 1% success rate and choice two have 50%, and they somehow pick choice one, that would be irrational and stupid.

 

But's not the case, the story force the characters into situations where they either choose to try and roll a hard six on that 1% or gave up and die. The rational choice then would be to go up against the impossible and kick "reason" (excuses) to the curb.

 

Of course, the strategist in me screams that it's completely unrealistic that anyone would ever face only choices of 1% success or gave up, that there is always another way, a better way, if one just think hard enough. But that's part of the suspension of disbelief the series asks. And in hindsight, what a low price it was for the epicness it delivered in return.

 

The story is a metaphor, that sometimes in life when your best choice is a bad one, you man up go through with it instead of making excuses and gave up. I think the series was pretty successful delivering this message.

 

It was years ago and I can only remember the vague outline of the plot, but I'm pretty sure I shed a few manly tears watching it.

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I know OP Luffy the Pirate who want's to be a Pirate King. I think most of the anime series are indeed objectivism. They just change the character, plot, story, and abilities but still they are the same.

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