Netflix has revealed the title for the first episode of its live-action One Piece series, and longtime fans of the anime and manga will likely recognize it.
That’s because the episode title, Romance Dawn, seems to be hinting at the origin of One Piece.
Published as a one-shot written by One Piece creator Eiichiro Oda in the Shonen Jump 1996 Summer Special, Romance Dawn is about a young pirate named Monkey D. Luffy, who, to make things short and spoiler-free, does some very pirate-y things. Romance Dawn is also the first arc in the anime, told over the first few episodes.
— Netflix Geeked (@NetflixGeeked) September 3, 2021
While the Romance Dawn one-shot wasn’t called One Piece at the time of its original publishing, it was essentially adopted as the origin of One Piece. In fact, it was eventually reprinted in One Piece Red: Grand Characters.
Now, it’s unclear if the first episode of Netflix’s One Piece series will be a retelling of the Romance Dawn arc or if the episode title is simply an homage to the series’ start.
Netflix announced the series back in 2020 as a partnership with Tomorrow Studios and Shueisha “to bring [One Piece’s] pirate adventure story from Japan to audiences around the world.” Netflix released this note from Oda, the author of the manga series, at the time of the announcement:
The story of One Piece centers around the Straw Hat Pirates and their captain, Monkey D. Luffy who, after eating the cursed Gum-Gum Devil Fruit, is turned into what is essentially a rubber man. This gives Luffy the power to stretch his body to great lengths. Luffy and his crew are after the legendary One Piece treasure, as whomever discovers it becomes the King of Pirates.
There’s no official casting or release date at this moment, but Steven Maeda (Lost, The X-Files) will serve as showrunner with Oda set to executive produce the series alongside Marty Adelstein and Becky Clements of Tomorrow Studios (Cowboy Bebop, Snowpiercer, Hanna). The picture of the first episode’s script reveals that the teleplay was written by Matt Owens and Maeda.
For more about Netflix’s live-action ventures, check out the first images from its upcoming Cowboy Bebop series and then check out the cast and creative team for its Avatar: The Last Airbender series.
Wesley LeBlanc is a freelance news writer and guide maker for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @LeBlancWes.