The manga opens like the anime does in a scene we've learned to skip over despite it's inherent importance. That is, the last words of Gol D. Roger who purposefully starts the next great pirate age. For what reason? Who knows. Let's just appreciate a moment how much he looks like Ace.( Chapter 1: Romance Dawn )
Bit of Business; Because it's frankly insane to comment on the manga and anime separately, I will be commenting on arcs, mooshing them together and talking about them at the same time --though I will bring up when things are different. Also for the East Blue Arc I'll review arc by arc (and not chapter by chapter or ep by ep.) Though we'll see what happens when we reach the Grand Line.