Creator / Eiichiro Oda

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Eiichiro Oda (尾田 栄一郎, born January 1, 1975) is the creator of the long-running Shōnen Manga One Piece, which is over eight hundred chapters in length and still going strong. Noted for his unusual art style and eccentric and imaginative character designs.

He got his start in drawing pictures from his father, who had a hobby as an oil painter. In middle school, Oda became a soccer player, inspired by the manga Captain Tsubasa. He began drawing manga during his second year there. At the time, Oda developed an interest in writing stories on pirates after watching the animated adaptation of Vicky the Viking. During his last year as a high school student, Oda quit the soccer club and turned his passion to manga.

While still in high school, Oda wrote and published his first work, Wanted! and won the Tezuka Award from Shonen Jump. After Wanted!, he studied at Kyushu Tokai University for one year before he dropped out to work as an assistant to manga artist such as Shinobu Kaitani, Masaya Tokuhiro, and Nobuhiro Watsuki. In 1996, he published Romance Dawn and with it's success, began work on One Piece.

In November 2004, Oda married actress Chiaki Inaba after dating for two years and he has two children.

Despite having been in the industry for half his life, he is still known for having a fanboyish love of manga in general, especially Dragon Ball. His playful approach to his work has won him a lot of fans. He often takes breaks after a couple of weeks, either because of research reasons or because of health issues, since it's known that he does not sleep very long a day. Those breaks last usually only a week, though.


Tropes associated with Oda:

  • Author Appeal:
    • Crossdressers. In the character design notes for Rurouni Kenshin, Nobuhiro Watsuki says that Kamatari, a crossdressing character, was inspired by one of his assistants suggesting a character based on the pun, an "okama with an o-kama", or a "crossdresser with a large scythe". Although the assistant is not named, because of this trope, everybody guessed that this assistant was Eiichiro Oda. In a later interview, Nobuhiro Watsuki confirmed that this guess was true. Watsuki explains that the original concept for Kamatari was a masculine looking crossdresser with effeminate mannerisms like the crossdressers in One Piece (Mr. 2 anyone?), but Watsuki had trouble drawing such a character and ended up making Kamatari a pretty crossdresser.
    • Afros.
    • Sunglasses are possibly a new appeal of his. Several characters suddenly wear sunglasses in their post-Time Skip design (Robin, Smoker, Pappug), and the same goes for unusually many of the characters introduced later in the series (though several of the "older" characters also have sunglasses). However, a reason for this may also be that the characters are drawn with sunglasses because it hides their eyes, and if he doesn't have to think of new types of eyes for every new character design, the Cast of Snowflakes tendency is easier to retain (or at least he can trick the readers into thinking it is always retained).
    • Animals. Though according to himself, it's not as much that he loves animals, he just loves drawing them. That said, Oda is hardly an animal hater with how a noteworthy lot of the named characters in One Piece are animals (mostly minor characters, but also a couple majors and one main character), and random animals are featured on 99 % of all title pages (except for the canon cover stories).
    • Absurdly proportioned characters. There's no shortage of massive/tall humans that tower over people, let alone actual giants.
    • Women with large breasts and impossible hourglass figures in Stripperiffic outfits.
  • Art Evolution: His art progressively became less cartoony, character designs (especially his women) are now more diverse, and his panel settings are also more detailed.
  • Breakthrough Hit: It was One Piece that launched his career.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: He says he became a manga artist because they "don't have to do a real job", and that if he were an animal it would be a sloth ("that means serious business").
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Aside from many characters from his works, Oda himself is one- one of his earliest works is just about one of the silliest creations in the world of manga and anime (not helped by the fact that It Runs on Nonsensoleum), but it's been going strong for 15 years and is an excellent example of creating an epic by use of a strong story continuation, well-developed settings and characters, and most of all, truckloads of unrepressed emotion.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: Indisputably a master of this trope, especially as One Piece went into its later years. He may be starting to slack a bit off on this tendency by drawing sunglasses on the characters (check the entry of Author Appeal above), but even if he is, he is still much better than most of his mangaka peers.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Flip to a page in One Piece, any page. You see that funky looking character in the background? He/She is going to be important later. Brook's introduction was cut out of the original One Piece english dub because the dubbing company assumed it was filler.
  • Creator Breakdown:
    • While working on One Piece, Oda's anxiousness of waiting for his wife's birth inspired him to develop Ace's relationship with Gold Roger.
    • It's been joked (and outright stated) by Toei that the reason the amount of fanservice spiked upward was because of Oda getting married to a gorgeous Ex-Cosplay Otaku Girl like Chiaki and being horny for her all the time - and to the displeasure of fans who liked the general lack of such things in the manga early on. For a guy who prefers not emphasizing romance that's not an obvious huge joke in his stories, he sure is a massive softie for his family.
  • Gonk: Some of his characters of all shapes and sizes are this.
  • It Runs on Nonsensoleum: Many of Oda's SBS answers to questions about how things work in the series. And many of the in-universe explanations, for that matter. How does Zorro talk with a sword in his mouth? His heart does the talking for him.
  • Name's the Same: Why he's apparently a fan of Oda Nobunaga.
  • One of Us: A huge fan of Dragon Ball, Dragon Quest, Tim Burton and Eminem? Not to mention marrying a super fine Cosplay Otaku Girl, which must be the dream of every geek. He's also a fan of Quentin Tarantino? His fannishness winds up in his manga, too: the Admirals are each based on a Japanese actor, Ivankov is based on Dr. Frank-N-Furter, and of course Thriller Bark. As for main crew members, Brook is based heavily on Michael Jackson and Saul "Slash" Hudson, and Franky was originally inspired by Jim Carrey, especially as Ace Ventura.
  • The Perfectionist: At least what his interviews give away. He wonít allow his assistants to draw anything that moves since it may result in an art shift. Check. He writes a movie script, and after that starts from scratch since he isnít satisfied with it and delays the whole production because of it. The end result? Strong World. Check. Additionally, there are several breaks around the year when a new chapter won't appear in Jump and the explanation is always "The author doing research".
  • Promoted Fanboy: A fan of shonen fighting manga is now one of the biggest names in the business.
  • The Rival: Sees the Pretty Cure series as this in the anime, since his children love the show more than One Piece. He declares that he'll take down Pretty Cure.
    • Also, to Toriko.
    • And of course, to Naruto. Oda himself declared Masashi Kishimoto his friend and rival and thanked him for his hard work over fifteen years. In an interview, Oda states that Kishimoto called Oda "Sensei"( According to Kishimoto, it was because when they met, Oda was in Jump for two years already and made quite a name for himself while Kishimoto was still fairly new at the time.), which Oda answered :"Please, never call me like that again." He also states that Naruto had, in a sense, driven him to make of One Piece an even better story.
  • That Russian Squat Dance: He was once asked about his daily routine, and represented it as a circular graphic: most of the time was occupied by "Cossack Dance".
  • Ship Sinking: Oda could be an admiral himself with all the ships he sinks. Indeed, it seems he has a fondness for trolling the fanbase with false flags when it comes to any serious signs of romance, at least when it comes to the Straw Hats themsleves.
  • Shout-Out:
    • A lot to Dragon Ball Z, and to soccer.
    • There's even a shout out to his shout-outs: his love of soccer is spoofed in one of the theatrical shorts, which has a character named "Odacchi" whose head sports a soccer ball pattern and is voiced by Oda himself.
  • Shrug of God: Inverted. It doesn't matter what the question is, Oda has an answer. No matter how crazy it seems. Or how perverted the question is.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: When asked why a door that was broken in one scene was intact soon after, he claimed a carpenter appeared off-screen and fixed it, and it certainly wasn't a mistake.
  • Trolling Creator:
    • He was told by Kazuki Yao regarding what hairstyles he doesn't want Franky to have in One Piece. Guess which character inexplicably got a new hairstyle every chapter.
    • Not to mention that the week-long break after the revelation of Gear Fourth left fans dumbfounded.
  • Voodoo Shark: His answers generally lead to more questions. Which then lead to awesome answers, including those to questions you didn't even know you had.
  • What Could Have Been: Or in this case, what could not have been. He abandoned his quest to become a soccer player due to his growing interest in manga. If he wasn't interested in manga, he would have become a soccer player.


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