That video has every JoJo (minus Johnny), Jolyne (mickey mouse head), Jotaro (hat and jacket), Josuke (huge hair), Giorno (spiral hair), Joseph (massive hat) and Jonathan (scarves), awesome.
Alright, so last time we get through the first 3 parts of JoJo, Phantom Blood, Battle Tendency and Stardust Crusaders, this time I’ll cover Diamond is Unbreakable, Vento Aureo (Golden Wind) and Stone Ocean. Put on some awesome music and possibly get a drink as no doubt this’ll be a rather long read.
Diamond is Unbreakable.
Well, it’s been a couple of months since I finished DiU so obviously I won’t be giving a blow by blow account of it, however, I’ll recall it best I can.
In my eyes, you can divide JoJo into 2 “parts” (outside of the 6 stories), “Dio” and “After Dio” to simplify, you could also go “Past” and “Future” or “Old” and “Young”, it doesn’t really matter. Simply, the first three parts form the first “half” of JoJo in my eyes, and the last three form the second. Jotaro being the bridge between the two. The second part of JoJo follows a more..routine approach, should I say, that is.. well, the last three parts of JoJo all follow a “monster of the week” style of storytelling that was touched upon in part 3 to a certain extent.
So, part 4, this is where the art style begins to drastically change, as evident in the below picture:
Now I’m sure I mentioned this before, but personally my favourite art style is the one used from late part 5 onwards (as it doesn’t really change, to be honest) and part 2. Anyway, Josuke, Josuke Josuke Josuke..
Josuke is certainly an interesting character, he’s Jotaro’s uncle, despite being much younger than him, for he’s Joseph’s son, yet his mother isn’t Joseph’s wife, etc. In short he’s never seen his father (at least I think he hadn’t, until the events of the story) and by this time, Joseph is a very old man, it was quite sad, in a way, to see my favourite character go from AWESOME to fairly useless but still in the story to..just being old. In a way part 4 was one of the sadder series’, despite being a lot more “slice of life” than any of the others. It touched on a lot of moral issues and so forth, plus there’s the short arc of the story where Joseph tries to get accepted by his son, to make think Josuke proud of his father.
I would have trouble explaining the plot of part 4, as to be honest there isn’t much of a plot for most of it. I suppose you could say it’s about a ghost girl’s wish, to make things simple. The enemy here isn’t Dio, it isn’t somebody who wants to take over the world, it’s just somebody who wants to lead a normal life, he acts like a normal person, he seems like a normal person, but deep down he has a cruel and malicious side. Perhaps it’s a comment on how almost everyone you meet may seem nice, but deep down..that’s another matter entirely. Yoshikage Kira, for that is the “big bad”‘s name, is normal..apart from his obsession with hands, which includes him finding young women, chopping off their hands and then keeping them with him until, presumably, they decay. However this is really only prominent in the second half or so of part 4, most of the first part is dealing with bizarre new stand users and generally..well, “slice of life”‘ing around. It was a pleasant change from part 3′s frantic dash across Asia, the entirety of part 4 takes place in a small town in Japan.
Jotaro is in part 4, however not much. To keep things somewhat fair, it’s explained that due to not fighting or whatever, his stand powers have decreased somewhat and he can only stop time for 1 second, although this gets changed again in part 6..it’s a tad confusing so I’ll touch on it more then. Needless to say, Jotaro isn’t in it much, his character is ALOT better as a side character, rather than the lead. As for the lead, Josuke, he’s a fairly amusing character, as he acts like a very well mannered individual…until you mention his hair. Josuke’s peculiar hairstyle is copied from a stranger who saved his life when he was a child (or something along those lines) so Josuke considers any insult towards the hair an insult to the one who saved his life, and then beats the crap out of them. As for his stand, Crazy Diamond, it’s an interesting one, certainly much more so than Star Platinum that just punches stuff. Crazy Diamond has almost as much offensive strength as Star Platinum (or at least in the initial chapters, he overwhelms Jotaro’s defense and would’ve landed a crippling blow had Jotaro not ZA WARUDO’d out of the way, so perhaps he wouldn’t be as strong as Jotaro in his prime but w/e) but the more interesting thing is that Crazy Diamond can change the form and structure of things to how he thinks they were before. So essentially, he can punch you and turn your face into a rock, he can also use this to heal people, and as such, much like his successor Giorno, he generally takes on the role of “healer”. He’s accompanied by various other stand users, including the user of The Hand, and it is heavily implied that if it had a competent user, The Hand would be one of the strongest stands, however, it’s user, Okuyasu (or something) is a bit…dimwitted. The Hand has greater offensive ability than Crazy Diamond and some form of teleportational abilities which I really don’t remember how they worked, nevertheless, it was a strong stand. There’s also Koichi who has his own stand which “evolves” several times, and uh, there’s a yandere girl who has a weird hair stand, but quite frankly that part of the story scared me when she used a very…….inventive way of making Koichi revise for English exams.
Part 4 also houses the author’s self insert, Rohan Kishibe, who also has one of the most broken stands in JoJo, but hey, I’d give myself an awesome stand if I wrote JoJo too. Heaven’s Gate is simply a CRAAAAAAAAAAAZY stand, or maybe it’s Heaven’s Door /shrug.
Now, much like the villain of part 6, Yoshikage Kira isn’t really all that strong. Another similarity to Pucci is that he isn’t really “evil”, and yet another, is that he has 3 different powers, however in Kira’s case he doesn’t actually change his stand, his just..sort of evolves. Near the end of part 4, (slight spoilers inc btw) Kira disguises himself with a new identity to escape Jotaro’s group, he takes up residence with the family of the man who’s identity he assimilated, however eventually the son notices something is amiss.
When Kira gets his third and last ability***, part 4 sort of turns into Groundhog day, I really have no idea how his stand worked, but basically, whoever came into contact with the son died. So part 4 is the only part (minus 6) where all the main characters die, infact, they die many times over, as I mentioned, it turns all groundhog day, and they keep dying over and over until eventually the son (who has no stand power, or any power of ANY kind) manages to outsmart Kira, and Josuke manages to defeat him.
The end of part 4 was quite an interesting one, too, I’ll quote it:
“Hayato’s mother will be waiting for her ‘husband’ to come home…Shigekyo’s parents must be waiting for their son to come home, all the boys and girls killed by Yoshikage, they too must have parents who are waiting for their children to come home.”
I found it interesting, anyway, perhaps the effect is lost when it’s quoted out of context, who knows. I do find the way JoJo, and especially part 4 is narrated, to be very unique, it’s almost as if the author has witnessed these events himself and is commenting on them.
In summary, part 4 was the gradual beginning of the “monster of the week” style that JoJo adopts from here on out, that is to say, you get 5-6 chapters of a new stand fight, and then 1 chapter of something else, and then another 5-6 of stand fighting, with lots and lots of new stand being introduced. Quite frankly, the sheer number of stands throughout JJBA is an impressive feat alone, even in part 6, where by this point there must be at least a hundred different stands, they are still interesting and unique, each one, however, the part which had the most interesting stands? That is part 5, also known as..
Vento Aureo / Golden Wind.
Ah, part 5, a nice break away from Japan, and an overall large change in style and themes, yet retaining the distinct “JoJo” feel, part 5 is another of my favourite parts, along with part 2. Why? Well there’s many good things about part 5, it has an interesting main cast who all have their fair share of battles, loads of enemies, an interesting story with several unexpected TWEESTS, and in my opinion, the most interesting stands in the entire series. That’s not to say part 5 is perfect, and it does have some..well, not exactly flaws, but there are quite alot of stands in part 5 that are just pure absurd in their ability and strength, Purple Haze and Gold Experience Requiem to name but a few, there’s also Notorious BIG, Grateful Dead, and of course, King Crimson. Take Purple Haze for example, this stand essentially utilises an “area of effect” poison ability that kills whatever it touches/infects within 30 seconds. That is, certain kill. There is no way to stop it, if you get affected, you’re going to die. Even if you stop time, you’re still going to have to pass through the mist to attack the user. You’d need a ranged stand to even stand a chance. This stand was so strong that Araki more or less went “yeah you’re outta here buddy” and Fugo vanished from the story (although it has a fair explanation).
Anyway, part 5 is essentially a JoJoified mafia story. Much like how part 1 is a JoJoified vampire story, part 4 is a JoJoified sitcom, part 6 is a JoJoified prison drama and part 7 is a JoJoified cowboy tale. Certainly, it is interesting, obviously I have no idea when Baccano was made in relation to part 5 of JoJo, but I can’t help but think they share a few similiar things. Namely, mafia families with super-human powers, in Baccano’s case, they are immortals, in JoJo’s case, they are stand users.
So, part 5 begins with a segway from part 4 with Koichi popping up in Italy to obtain a skin sample of Giorno (because he’s Dio’s biological son..one of them) yet in a short time, the focus shifts to Giorno, and his goal to become the #1 mafia boss, for a good purpose though, not for profit/evil etc. Joining Giorno Giovanna are Bruno Bucciarati with the stand Sticky Fingers. Narancia with the stand Aerosmith, Abbachio with Moody Blues, Fugo with Purple Haze and Trish with..Spice Girl, last but not least, Guido Mista with Sex Pistols.
They travel about, on a mission that I won’t reveal here, constantly under assault by assassins from a certain group, however they overcome all the odds and make it to their destination..which is where the PLOT TWEEEEST occurs. Shortly after this moment, we come across one of the more awesome stand users, who also has an insanely strong, near broken level stand, Risotto Nero with his stand Metallica. Sadly he dies a rather stupid death, but it’s to be expected when he was even overpowering King Crimson, who has the ability to erase 12 seconds of time (which is insanely useful in the context of the manga, but I would fail at explaining it, simply put, he can evade and counter anything) indeed, he almost kills King Crimson. Not that much further along from here, we have the finale in Rome, oh and of course.. and a certain somebody from part 3 makes a Gintoki trademark unstoppable comeback.
SILVAAA CHALIOTUUUUU, REKWEEMUUUUUUU, man I love that theme, it’s a remix of the arcade fighter one.
Ah yes, and right before the end we have the most broken stand in JoJo..nay, the most powerful fictional ability I can think of. Gold Experience Requiem. What can GER do? Negate -any- attack made to the user, ANYTHING, even an attack made in time that does not literally exist, anything. What’s more, it is generally assumed that it retained all the abilities that GER had before being pierced by the arrow. To top it off, if you are killed by GER, your death will be returned to “zero”, meaning you will die over and over and over and over for all eternity. Not suprisingly, part 5 ends soon after, with Giorno achieving his goal. Sadly..that’s the last we ever see of Giorno Giovana, outside of one very brief mention near the end of…
Indeed, the very last part of JoJo(?) the.. ‘end’ of the 20 year epic spanning almost 1000 chapters. Stone Ocean’s name refers to the fact that the majority of the series is based inside of a prison. The main character this time? The first ever female JoJo, Jolyne Kujo, now, as she is American, that technically doesn’t make her a JoJo, as in American spelling her name is Jolyne Kujo as opposed to Kujo Jolyne, etc. Yet they get around this by just saying “no she’s a Joestar”..which she is. Along for the ride this time are Hermes with the Kiss stand, Weather Report with the..Weather Report stand, Emporio with Burning Down the House, Annasui with Diver Down, FF with Foo Fighters and of course, Jotaro with Star Platinum, and later on, the ultimate stand, Star Platinum: The World.
The character are relatively amusing and entertaining in their own way, I think I preferred part 5′s cast, but they aren’t exactly bad. FF is certainly interesting as ‘she’ is a mass of..well, plankton. Annasui is amusing thanks to his obsession with marrying Jolyne, Jotaro is hardly in it until the end due to certain reasons, Emporio is mainly for comedy relief until the end, Weather Report..well, he has potentially the most powerful stand of all, behind Giorno’s, that’s WITHOUT factoring in Heavy Weather and Devil’s Rainbow. As for Hermes.. Hermes is there to make hilarious facial expressions.
Part 6 is set in 2012, Mayan calendar cough cough.
Basically, most of part 6 is prison drama mixed in with the mystery of “White Snake”, many many things are revealed in flashbacks of Dio and Pucci, Dio’s goals are finally made clear, as is the real nature of stands. There..really isn’t that much to say about part 6 that I can think of without spoiling it a lot. A lot of the important bits are TWEEESTS etc, however I will spoil just this (so look away now if you don’t wanna know) every single character, minus Emporio dies at the end or by the end. Pucci’s power is MAXIMUM so to speak, however Jotaro did have one chance to kill him, but instead he used the chance to save Jolyne’s life..a shame because she died anyway. Oh well. However, Emporio manages to utilise the Weather Report stand disk, and uses its most absurd ability (or at least..one of them) and he makes the oxygen content in the surrounding air 100% or something, so basically, he oxygen poisons Pucci and then caves his skull in, this stops Pucci’s stand from finishing its task “create a perfect world” by which perfect is the users idea of perfect, sorta.
Thus.. Steel Ball Run is born.
So, the all important scores, how did each part score? I’ll tell you.
Phantom Blood: 9/10
Battle Tendency: 10/10
Stardust Crusaders: 7/10
Diamond is Unbreakable: 8/10
Golden Wind: 9/10
Stone Ocean: 8/10
Steel Ball Run: ?????????????????????????????????????????? Only time will tell.
***Here’s a proper explanation of Kira’s stand:
Late in the story, his father Yoshihiro Kira’s Arrow pierces a second time Kira’s body and grants Killer Queen a tertiary bomb, called Another One Bites the Dust. This bomb is actually a distinct, miniaturized form of Killer Queen, which normally stays with someone who knows Kira’s secrets. If someone tries to interrogate that person about Kira, the tertiary bomb will enter their field of vision, get into their eye that way, and induce an explosion. Until Kira finds out who the bomb killed, he lets a brief temporal loop occur to one hour or day earlier; only Kira and the one his Stand watches will be aware of this. Even if the victim doesn’t ask questions this time around, Another One Bites the Dust will still kill them. Only if Kira is confident about who died will he let time flow normally.