(Spoilers ahead, you have been warned)
So, I love JoJo. I’ve become a huge fan of the JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure franchise over the last few months and it’s something I’ve been able to connect with a lot of people through. I personally wasn’t that big a fan of the first season, featuring the Phantom Blood and Battle Tendency arcs. I thought it was perfectly alright, but I didn’t get too much into the franchise and it took another six months before I decided to watch Stardust Crusaders. I then proceed to binge through the entirety of Stardust Crusaders and Diamond is Unbreakable over the course of a month, amidst college finals. I’ve become a huge fan of the franchise and I fell in love with the Diamond is Unbreakable arc, filled with charming and interesting characters, one of the best antagonists I’ve seen in anime, and the same over-the-top campy goodness that makes the franchise such a charmer.
So, there’s a lot to say about what I love in the Diamond is Unbreakable. For starters, Josuke is probably my favorite JoJo protagonist to date, having watched the entire anime adaptation, read Vento Aureo in its entirety, and read one-third of Stone Ocean. Much of his charm comes through his innocence as a character and the sweet, adorable person that lies under the giant exterior that JoJo’s characters are known for. The supporting cast is filled to the brim with engaging and entertaining side characters, from the young bright-eyed Koichi to the mysterious mangaka Rohan. While the main protagonists are all great in their own right, I’d be hard-pressed to not say that one of the best parts of Diamond is Unbreakable is its primary antagonist, the obsessive-compulsive serial killer Yoshikage Kira. Kira is a fascinating character to watch throughout the story, from his careful demeanor and desire to live a quiet life to his cunning genius when faced with the protagonists. Kira is one of the most compelling antagonists I’ve seen in anime and definitely a highlight of an already amazing part.
Favorite Episode: Episode 24, Sheer Heart Attack Pt. 2
There are really a lot of episodes I could have picked for this spot: Episode 10 with the entertaining and enthusiastic Tonio Trussardi, any of the last four episodes of the season, the second episode of Rohan’s introductory arc. There are a lot of great choices, but I have to pick Sheer Heart Attack Pt. 2 for one of the most well-executed beatdowns in the JoJo series. In a franchise that is famous for its over-the-top, campy fight scenes, Jotaro vs. Kira was one of the most gratifying for the viewer. After watching Kira relentlessly beat down Koichi and nearly kill him, Jotaro returns to consciousness and gives Kira the beatdown of a lifetime. There are no words I have that could properly describe how well the fight is executed, so instead, here is a video of the fight, so you can see it for yourself. This fight coupled with the ominous finale to the episode, featuring Kira making his grand escape by swapping his face and body with that of another person, lead into the show’s final major arc quite nicely.
In the end, I have to thank one of my roommates for bringing me fully into the JoJo franchise. In a time when I had pretty much given up on watching the rest of JoJo, he brought a passion and fandom for the series that inspired me to give it another look. The Stand concept had always fascinated me and looking back, I’m glad I made the decision to keep going. JoJo stands today as one of my personal favorite franchises in anime and it’s the franchise where I’ve easily read the most of the source material now, having read over 100 chapters of Vento Aureo in two days.