A Study in Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: The Appeal

©Viz Media

©Viz Media

The Appeal of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

Oh boy, have I wanted to do an article on JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure. To preface, JoJo is my favorite anime/manga series. Therefore, it’s natural that I would want to introduce it to others. Of course, I thought, “Hey. Since I love it so much, why don’t I do an article about it?” This ended up extending a bit further, much to my surprise and excitement, to a full-on study of the series, much like the ones on One Piece and Naruto we currently have on the site (check those out, by the way, if you’re looking for a good read). While there are many different aspects that I could focus on with this article, I decided that the best first step for this series would be to examine the appeal of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure so that I can get you interested in the show. As a brief side note: I will be talking about both the anime (4 parts) and the manga (8 parts) in this article in order to give the positives of both, as well as helping to distinguish some differences within the series.

A classic staple in any series, fight sequences are an extremely important part for both entertainment purposes, as well as providing much of the plot progression within many different series such as Dragon Ball, One Piece, Bleach, etc. JoJo, much like the previously mentioned shows, relies quite heavily on action. However, the way in which it’s done is where the show begins to diversify from other shows. A fairly large problem in many manga series and anime series right now is called Power Escalation (in which a series begins to lose a grasp of its own identity, leading it to, in some cases, erode into something entirely different from the original intent of the series). This may lead you to think, “Ok. So JoJo must have this problem, correct?” Actually, this is untrue for the series. This is mainly due to the fact that JoJo, as of this point, is comprised of 8 parts. Each part is contains its own story, involving a new member of the Joestar bloodline, new villains, and new messages/themes. This allows for each part to be a fresh, new experience that readers/viewers can enjoy while keeping the parts cohesive. Another unique part of the fighting in JoJo comes from the powers that people wield. This manifests in two different forms, depending on what part you watch. For parts one and two, certain people have the ability to use Hamon, which is essentially the power of the sun. In part 3 and beyond, people can manifest their fighting spirit into things known as Stands, which come in a variety of types. Both of these ideas are incredibly unique.

Next up, we’ll look at the characters. Just as there’s a diverse array of Stands, there is also a diverse array of characters. This is mainly due to the fact that, as stated earlier, each part is its own story. In fact, each part has it’s own specific time period, locations, and people. For example, Part 1 occurs in the 1880’s in Britain, while Part 4 occurs in 1999 in the (fictional) Japanese town of Morioh. Of course, these differences aren’t the only things to define characters. Each character has their own unique personalities, which allows for them to shine on their own rather than always relying on the main character(s). This also allows for a lot of chemistry between characters, whether it is humorous or more serious. With the topic of characters also come character designs. A common trope in anime is that main characters have a unique color of hair or a unique hair style. JoJo mainly exhibits the latter; with the main characters having interesting hair styles or hair pieces that distinguishes them from the common passerby. This also applies to villains, who tend to have either a unique hair style or a more interesting color than the average black/brown/etc. Just so that this part of the article doesn’t become TOO lengthy, I’ll only give a brief overview of clothing. Of course, the clothing of each character is unique, whether it be because of how stylized it is or how interesting Araki can make plain clothing. A mix of all of these traits allows for viewers to quickly become attached to characters, giving a fantastic viewing experience.

While this barely even touches on what make JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure appealing, any more details would lead to some big spoilers, which would defeat the point of this article. After all, I’m just trying to pique your interest in the show, not give it all away! As we head for the future, whether it is the continuation of Part 8 of the manga, or (hopefully) the release of more anime, I hope to see the series continue to grow as well as see more people recognize it for what it truly is: a masterpiece.

Until next time,

Brook Pheiffer