Sup, mortals! And Nova.
In high anticipation of the next chapter, I decided to make a blog to pass the time. The topic will be "The Straw Hat crew consists of more than Luffy and Zoro, godfreakingdammit!" And yes, the cursing is crucial to the title.
To those who haven't realized or simply keep forgetting about it, the last time we saw Sanji, Nami, Chopper and Brook was December 2013. It's been over one year and 4 months. And the last time we saw either of them fight a serious battle with high stakes was in September 2008.
Now, I know what you're thinking: Wasn't that, like, Sabaody before the Time-Skip?
Yes! To me, it feels like most of the Straw Hats, including those we've seen on the scene of battle during Dressrosa, didn't get to fight a real, serious battle since before the Time-Skip.
In fact, the last half-way meaningful battle Sanji got to finish on his own was against Jabra. All battles after that were either team battles, preparation for someone else to finish the enemy off or simply not worth mentioning *coughfishmanislandcough*.
Nami leached victory from Sanji in her fight against Absalom and left Kumadori to Chopper. I'm not sure her fight against Kalifa even counts because it was so silly and Chopper rampaged through it. In other words, her last really harsh one-on-one battle was in freaking Alabasta!
Chopper did get a fair share of fighting, actually. Or at least enough spotlight while doing so for me to forget that his last harsh battle was in Enies Lobby. But, seeing how he won it by going berserk via Rumble Ball, it should be noted that the last time he beat an opponent through strength, skill and wits was against that idiot, Gedatsu.
And Brook actually never got to finish a meaningful one-on-one battle, because the only meaningful battle he ever fought alone was one he could not win on his own, namely against Ryuma. Poor baby bones only got to fight mooks ever since. No one gives him a chance to prove that he's actually pretty cool. (at the very least he got to prove that his skull is not as hollow as it may seem when he tricked Jora)
Which is why Oda better improve on this state of things after Dressrosa or I'll personally cut off his crown jewels.
While we are at it, Usopp was so busy fighting little girls that the last meaningful solo-battle on his record was against his own captain. The only reason why this is excusable is because it's Usopp and, let's face it, that shot against Sugar and developing Haki was pretty sweet.
Robin got to look all badass in this arc, admittedly, but letting her fanboys do the fighting for her just doesn't look good on her resume. I know that scene when she went Miss-All-Sunday on Hakuba's ass was meant to show us why she doesn't fight as often. But, Skypiea is so long ago and the most she got to do on her own since then was bitchslap Spandam.
Aaand then there's Franky fighting Senor Pink... eh, I guess that does count as a tough duel but only because both of them refuse to dodge. I'm not doubting its difficulty or manly appeal. I just don't... WHY THIS?
So, yeah, I'm kind of missing the "this is the battle of your freaking life, screw up and you're dead" vibe I got before the Time-Skip. I know, not all OP battles have to be super serious and I get that with so many people there is more emphasis on teamwork and all. But I really just want to see Nami bleed from the face... aham, I mean emotional weight in battle again.