1. Home
  2. Otapedia
  3. Mangapedia
  4. Manga
  5. Jojos Bizarre Adventure - Mangapedia

OtapediaJojos Bizarre Adventure - Mangapedia

A work by Araki Hirohiko. Although it was first published in Weekly Shonen Jump, it has since moved to Ultra Jump and has been serialized in that magazine ever since. In the 2006 "100 Japanese Media Arts Survey", Jojo's Bizarre Adventure was ranked #2 in the manga category.

Setting

While the work as a whole follows the theme of praising humanity, the series also heavily goes into the importance of bonds and camaraderie. Other important elements that characterize Jojo's Bizarre Adventure also include supernatural phenomena, as well as some horror and suspense-like storytelling.

The main focus of the Jojo's Bizarre Adventure story revolves around the struggles between good and evil with characters that use special powers that go beyond the comprehension of normal people. From the beginning of Part 3, Stardust Crusaders, Stands were introduced and allowed these special abilities to manifest into a more physical form. This marked a turning point in the manga and resulted in it focusing more on fighting with Stands.

Furthermore, instead of depicting these battles as feats of pure strength between two opponents, fights in this series often focus on fighters trying to strategize and outwit their enemy using various tricks. This is seen especially in Part 2, Battle Tendency, which follows the protagonist Joseph Joestar. Joseph is known for using his remarkable wits to defeat opponents that are many times stronger than he is. This resulted in a protagonist that uses things like surprise attacks and underhanded tactics, which was rarely seen in classic shonen manga stories. From Part 4, Diamond is Unbreakable, and onward, fights also consist of characters often using their abilities in unusual and unexpected ways, allowing the series to escape the "power creep" that most other series struggles with by simply introducing continuously stronger opponents.

Story Background

In the beginning, Jojo's Bizarre Adventure was serialized in Shueisha's shonen manga magazine, Weekly Shonen Jump, in 1986 (in the January and February 1987 combination edition). The series would continue being published in Weekly Shonen Jump until 2004, where it would be moved to Shueisha's seinen magazine, Ultra Jump. From that point on, Jojo's Bizarre Adventure would continue serialization in Ultra Jump until the present day. Currently, the series as a whole has over 100 individual tankobon volumes and, as of 2015, has over 90,000,000 printed volumes in circulation.

When Jojo's Bizarre Adventure was first serialized, it was in the Golden Age of shonen battle comics like Fist of the North Star, Saint Seiya, Kinniku Man, and Dragon Ball. To follow the craze at the time, the series drew significant inspiration from these other series, though it found ways to make itself stand out among the others. The resulting story that followed blended both classic shonen staples and experimental techniques.

Story Development

As of 2015, the series has a total of eight parts, all of which are set in various settings with different characters. Jojo's Bizarre Adventure begins in 19th Century England in Part 1 (Phantom Blood) and goes all the way to 2011 in Part 6 (Stone Ocean), which takes place in America. The story up to this point all takes place in the same world and follows the Joestar family, but from Part 7 (Steel Ball Run) and onward, the series is set in a parallel world. Although many characters that appear in Part 7 and 8 shares some features and names from previous Parts, they are very much different characters.

Synopsis

Part 1: Phantom Blood

This part is set in 19th Century England. At its core, it highlights the bond between Jonathan Joestar, the only child of the noble Joestar family, and Dio Brando, a lower class, yet incredibly charismatic individual who wishes to rise up in the world. This part also introduces a mysterious stone mask that transforms people into vampires and the concept of Hamon (also known as Ripple), a unique breathing technique. These two concepts become both Jonathan and Dio's strength and what leads to the two eventually face off in the end.

Part 2: Battle Tendency

Part 2 is set in America during 1938, where Nazi Germany is on the rise to power. It also follows Jonathan's descendant, Joseph Joestar. Part 2 focuses on Joseph's struggles against the Pillar Men, strange, ancient beings that were excavated and are shown to have abilities and intellect that far exceeds that of a normal person.

Part 3: Stardust Crusaders

Stardust Crusaders saw the introduction of Stands, which largely replaced Hamon altogether. It also begins in Japan during 1987 and follows the protagonist Kujo Jotaro, a Japanese descendent of Joseph Joestar. DIO (formerly Dio Brando in Part 1), is revived and, through the connection to the Joestar family, causes both Jotaro and his mother to gain their own Stands. Jotaro's mother, however, is left in critical condition, causing him to find DIO, the old enemy of the Joestars and the source of their Stands. His journey leads him to Egypt, where he has his stand-off against DIO in the hope of saving his mother. Part 3 also has the previous protagonist, Joseph Joestar, join the quest, though he is now 69 years old.

Part 4: Diamond is Unbreakable

Set in Japan in 1999, Diamond is Unbreakable follows Higashikata Josuke, who is discovered to be the illegitimate child of Joseph Joestar. He lives in Morioh, a town that is located in S-City, M-Prefecture. Josuke eventually discovers that the town has a serial killer that has been going around and killing civilians, leading to a life-and-death struggle between him and the killer, Yoshikage Kira. Previous protagonists Kujo Jotaro and Joseph Joestar also make appearances.

Part 5: Golden Wind

Golden Wind is set in Italy in 2001. The protagonist of Part 5 is Giorno Giovanna, the son of DIO. That said, since DIO's body from the neck down was originally Jonathan Joestar's body, Giorno has the blood of the Joestar family running through him as well. The main story focuses on the internal conflict within the Italian gang named Passione and its many members.

Part 6: Stone Ocean

This part features the first female protagonist in the series and is set in America in 2011. The protagonist is Kujo Jotaro's daughter, Cujoh Jolyne, who is falsely accused of committing a crime and thrown in prison. As such, most of Stone Ocean is set within a prison. In the end, the antagonist's grand scheme to bring about the end of this cycle of the universe becomes a reality and the lineage of the Joestar family that began in Part 1 comes to an end.

Part 7: Steel Ball Run

This part is set in a completely different world than all of the previous parts. The setting is in the Western side of the world in 1890, the age of pioneers. "Steel Ball Run" itself refers to a large, transcontinental race that is sponsored by America. The protagonist of the story, Johnny Joestar, is a genius jockey who became paralyzed from the waist down. He is also joined by Gyro Zeppeli, a mysterious man with the ability to manipulate steel balls, though they both hide their true intentions from each other.

Part 8: Jojolion

Much like Part 7, Part 8 is set in an alternate world, but shares the same name as the setting of Part 4: the town of Morioh from S-City, M-Prefecture. That said, the two Morioh's share no direct connection other than their names. Part 8's protagonist is Higashikata Josuke (spelled with different kanji than Part 4's Josuke), who is found completely naked and without any of his memories. As he tries to find out his true identity, he discovers incredible secrets and gets wrapped up in various struggles with other characters.

Unique Characteristics

One aspect in particular that this series is known for is its use of intense and unusual sound effects and the unique style that Araki draws them in. A few especially famous examples from Part 1 include "zukyuuun", which was used in a certain kiss scene, and "memetaa", which was used to imitate the sound of punching a frog. From Part 3 and onward, sound effects like "gogogogogo" and "dododododo" are frequently used to give off the feeling of tension. These sound effects have become so iconic, other manga and anime series often use them to parody Jojo's Bizarre Adventure.

Aside from the sound effects, the series is also known for showing its characters in extravagant, stylish poses that fans have dubbed simply as "Jojo poses". These poses often appear on tankobon volume covers and particularly important scenes. Since Araki did not want his series to lose to the already intensely iconic series that were also published in Weekly Shonen Jump, he took inspiration from Renaissance-era statues to make more creative poses. That said, many fans consider "Jojo poses" to be an art all on its own. They have also become so popular, people outside of the Jojo community also recognize the iconic poses from Jojo's Bizarre Adventure.

The manga also makes use of an irregular paneling style and unusual coloring schemes that defy common sense, adding to the characteristic style of the series even more.

Unique Abilities

Throughout the series, there are two notable unique abilities used by various characters: Hamon and Stands.

Hamon (also known as Ripple)

A special ability that serves as the focus in Parts 1 and 2. Within the series, the Eastern part of the world also refers to it as "Sendo".

At its core, Hamon is a breathing technique that affects one's circulation and brings out incredibly potent life energy. This energy can be used to strengthen one's body, cure wounds, slow aging, and other similar benefits to humans. Hamon energy also has the same wavelength as sunlight, which allows the protagonists and other Hamon users to stand up against vampires, zombies, and other creatures from the dark that are weak against sunlight.

Hamon also has several other uses as well, like the ability to stick to and repel other things, which allows a proficient user to walk on water and climb up smooth pillars. Furthermore, while Hamon energy can be forced into vampires and other creatures through punches and kicks, other organic matter and liquids like water and wine can also store Hamon as well. This energy can also be flown through metals and fibers to deal more damage. When an intense amount of Hamon energy is used in a single attack, the energy becomes visible and takes on a specific color. When this happens, it is often referred to as a finishing move called an "Overdrive". Such examples include "Sunlight Yellow Overdrive" and "Turquoise Blue Overdrive". In addition, one can use a final, ultimate move called the "Deep Pass Overdrive", which will transfer all of their own life energy into another Hamon user, greatly increasing their power and abilities. This move was used by Will A. Zeppeli, resulting in his death in exchange for Jonathan gaining the strength he needed to defeat the overwhelmingly powerful Tarkus.

Although Hamon was the main focus of the series up until Part 2, Joseph Joestar, the original protagonist of Part 2, continues using the technique at times in Part 3, even in his old age.

Stands

Stands are the special ability that take the forefront from Part 3 onward. Although many associate "special abilities" with unseen, invisible forces that can do things like bend spoons, the author, Araki Hirohiko, wanted to give these abilities a physical form so he could draw them. Within the context of the series, Stands are explained as visible figures of power that are born from one's own life energy.

These abilities cover an incredibly wide range of peculiar abilities and have an even wider variety of appearances. For example, the protagonist of Part 3, Kujo Jotaro, has a Stand named Star Platinum that has a humanoid appearance and is known for its incredible power, precise movements, and versatility. Aside from this, other Stand powers include less impressive powers like sticking to a target's tongue and making them say nothing but lies and affecting the nerves of others with a weak electric signal. Some Stands, however, have incredibly formidable abilities like the ability to stop time or accelerate the flow of time until the end of the universe. That said, as established before, simply having a stronger ability does not guarantee victory and even the weakest of Stands can cause significant damage in battle when used correctly. For example, in Part 5, the leader of the Passione assassin team, Risotto Nero, has a Stand named Metallica (localized as Metallic) with the ability to control iron. Risotto uses this ability to form deadly weapons out of his victim's own blood, dealing great internal damage and leaving them gasping for air, as their blood can no longer carry oxygen to their body. This method was used to nearly kill the mysterious boss of the gang, who has a Stand with the seemingly invincible ability to skip time while keeping all events the same. In Part 6, an important character named F.F. was badly hurt by a Stand with the simple power to boil water, as it was used to boil the water inside of their body.

With these strange abilities and more, it is clear that Stands have nearly limitless different powers, though they all generally follow a set of shared rules. The first of these rules is that an individual can only have one Stand. That said, this rule is sometimes broken in cases of things like forced possession and such, granting others the abilities of another's Stand.

Some other basic rules regarding these abilities include Stands only being invisible and interactable to other Stand users, harming a Stand results in its user getting harmed as well, and a Stand's range being inversely proportional to its strength. In other words, physically powerful Stands often have a close range, whereas weaker Stands generally have a longer range. There are also exceptions to these rules as well, like Stands that can fuse with puppets, water, and other materials. These Stands have something like an "auto-pilot" feature, meaning that their range has no association with their strength and do not follow these general rules.

Ever since Part 3, Stands were also given their own unique names. In Part 3, these names were based either on Tarot cards or the 9 Great Egyptian Gods to fit the original setting of Stardust Crusaders. From Part 4 onward, however, Stand names became much more varied and were named after famous Western musicians and songs.

Special Influences

From the beginning of Jojo's Bizarre Adventures, various characters' names were taken from different forms of overseas popular culture, like music, movies, art, and fashion. This can be seen in the names of characters earlier on, as well as in the names of Stands beginning in Part 4, which are often named after Western music figures and songs. For example, the name of the protagonists, Jojo, originally came from a character with the same name from the Beatles' song, "Get Back". Of course, many characters' clothing is also inspired by overseas rock artists, though from Part 5, it began referencing mode fashion, giving its characters even more distinct outfits. As a result, in addition to Stands being references to Western music, several characters in Part 6 also parody several different famous fashion brands as well.

Other Media

Spin-Off Manga

Several spin-offs feature Kishibe Rohan, a major character from Part 4: Diamond is Unbreakable, as the protagonist in four spin-offs. Such spin-offs include "Kishibe Rohan at the Louvre", "Kishibe Rohan goes to Gucci", and the series titled "Thus Spoke Kishibe Rohan". Furthermore, another character from Part 4, Yoshikage Kira, also takes the role of protagonist in "Dead Man's Questions". Other spin-offs feature the Part 3 villains, Oingo and Boingo, in their own short story titled "Oingo Boingo Brothers Adventure". While these things are often published as manga, they are often treated more like character merchandise and often foreshadow events of the series' future. Unlike the main series, which is usually printed in black and white, these spin-off manga series are usually printed in color.

Art Books

Currently, three art books have been published: "JoJo6251: World of Araki Hirohiko", "JOJO A-GO!GO!", and "JOJOVELLER". The extravagant covers and cases that the latter two books come in also give it the feeling of being a proper artbook, rather than a simple collection of art from the manga.

Novels

Beginning in 1993, novel spin-offs based on Part 3 of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure would be written and published. There are currently six different novels of the series available today. The novelizations of the series truly hit their stride with the third publication, "'The Book' Jojo's Bizarre Adventure 4th Another Day", which was written by Otsuichi. Each individual novel breaks the limitations of most manga novelizations and allows the strengths and styles of each writer to flourish.

CDs and Cassette Books

This audio drama is based on Part 3 and was released from 1992 to 1993. Although CD and cassette tape versions were both released, the content is the same. The first volume uses the characteristics of the medium to its advantage to bring the original's sound effects and the villains to life.

TV Anime

There have been several anime adaptations that have taken several different forms, such as OVAs, movies, TV series, and so on. The first anime adaptation covered the second half of Part 3 over six episodes that were released through 1993. Later, the same studio produced another seven episodes that covered the first half of the series beginning in 2000.

In 2007, the same main staff as the previous adaptation created a feature film adaptation of Part 1 of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, though due to the restraints of the film's run-time, some aspects of the original material had to be changed.

2012 marked the beginning of the TV anime series. While the series accurately recreates the story, it also includes the original manga's characteristic sound effects and stylized text among other unique characteristics to make it as respectful of an adaptation as possible. As of 2015, the main anime series has covered up to Part 3.

Video Games

The first game that featured Jojo's Bizarre Adventure as a guest appearance was Famicom Jump, which was released in 1989. The first game that was based on the series itself launched for the Super Famicom in 1993. That said, this particular game played much like a role-playing game, as the genre was in its prime at the time. What many consider to be the best game based on the series was the 2D fighting arcade game produced by Capcom in 1998. This game, simply titled "Jojo's Bizarre Adventure", is based on Part 3 and features a special system for using Stands. Many praised the arcade game as a fantastic 2D fighter, eventually resulting in the arcade version getting ported to home consoles that also became a hit. An updated, fine-tuned, and optimized version of the game titled "Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Mirai no Isan" was later released in 2012 and allowed the game to be played in HD. This version of the game also performed very well among customers. Furthermore, the original author, Hirohiko Araki, also drew art specifically for this game, as Midler (localized as Rose in English), previously only appeared as an "unseen enemy" and in a long-shot panel after being defeated.

As years passed, other games were also produced and released, like a 3D action-adventure game titled "GioGio's Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind" (2002) and a separate series of 3D fighting games that feature a variety of major characters. This series began with "Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle", which was released in 2013 for home consoles and mobile devices. Other installments in the series are also planned in the future.

Influences on Pop Culture

While many aspects of pop culture and academic art were referenced to create Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, many types of fashion and art are also conversely taking inspiration from Jojo's Bizarre Adventure. One particular example is the fashion brand Gucci, which collaborated with the series in 2011. This collaboration featured characters in advertisements and displays for promotional purposes. The fashion magazine, SPUR, also published one of Araki's spin-offs, "Kishibe Rohan Goes to Gucci". In 2009, Araki also wrote another spin-off titled "Kishibe Rohan at the Louvre", which was featured in the Bande Dessinée Project. This project was founded by French publisher Futuropolis and the Louvre museum and had the spin-off displayed in a special exhibit in the Louvre, making it the first Japanese manga to do so. As such, Jojo's Bizarre Adventure broke through the boundaries of manga and came a step closer to fine art. In 2012, Sendai and Tokyo held a large-scale Jojo Exhibition to commemorate the manga's 25th anniversary since it was first serialized.

Many performers and musicians have also noted that they are fans of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure. On the talk show named "Ame Talk", such comedians and performers came together to host "Jojo's Bizarre Comedians". Currently, there are two episodes of this segment that aired in 2007 and 2012 respectively. Comedians Itoda Jun and Ozawa Kazuhiro have also formed a comedy duo named "Speedwagon". This name originated from one of the characters in the series, Robert E. O. Speedwagon.

About the Author

The author of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, Araki Hirohiko, was born on June 7, 1960. In 1980, he created "Poker Under Arms", which earned him his debut in Weekly Shonen Jump. This manga would also be selected as the runner-up for the 20th Tezuka Award. In his youth, Araki often read works by Shirato Sanpei like "Sasuke" and "Kamui Den". Shirato's writing style often takes nonsensical things like ninjutsu and attempts to explain them with logic and reasoning, something that can be seen in Araki's earlier work. Some particularly clear examples include early sections of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure and its predecessor, "Baoh: The Visitor". Another work that influenced Araki is Yokoyama Mitsuteru's "Babel II", which served as inspiration for the protagonist of Part 3, Kujo Jotaro, to go out adventuring in his school uniform. In an interview, Araki also stated that Yokoyama's works are essentially his origin.

While Araki has no experience being an assistant himself, some popular manga artists worked as assistants for Araki. These artists include Sanbe Kei and Shiibashi Hiroshi, who wrote "Erased" (Boku Dake ga Inai Machi) and "Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan" (Nurarihyon no Mago) respectively.

Anime Adaptation

Jojo's Bizarre Adventure (Jojo no Kimyou na Bouken)
An adaptation of Part 1 (Phantom Blood) and Part 2 (Battle Tendency) of Araki Hirohiko's manga of the same name. It is the first part of the anime TV series...

Anime

Jojo's Bizarre Adventure

Set in England in the latter half of the 19th Century, this story follows Jonathan Joestar, the son of a noble family, and Dio Brando, a young man who became Jonathan's adopted brother in his youth. Eventually, Dio learns about a stone mask in the Joestar family's possession and, in an attempt to follow his personal ambitions, wears it and becomes a wicked vampire...

Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders

The protagonist of Part 3, Kujo Jotaro, notices something strange and learns from his grandfather, Joseph Joestar, that he has gained a Stand. Together with Joseph, Jotaro makes his way toward Dio, the same vampire that Joseph's grandfather, Jonathan, fought against many years ago…

Bibliography

Jojo's Bizarre Adventure All 50 Volumes (Shueisha Bunko Comics) Complete

Volume 1 Part 1: Phantom Blood (Published in February 2002, 978-4086177849)
Volume 2 (Published in February 2002, 978-4086177856)
Volume 3 (Published in February 2002, 978-4086177863)
Volume 4 (Published in April 2002, 978-4086177870)
Volume 5 (Published in April 2002, 978-4086177887)
Volume 6 (Published in May 2002, 978-4086177894)
Volume 7 (Published in May 2002, 978-4086177900)
Volume 8 (Published in June 2002, 978-4086177917)
Volume 9 (Published in June 2002, 978-4086177924)
Volume 10 (Published in July 2002, 978-4086177931)
Volume 11 (Published in July 2002, 978-4086177948)
Volume 12 (Published in August 2002, 978-4086177955)
Volume 13 (Published in August 2002, 978-4086177962)
Volume 14 (Published in September 2002, 978-4086177979)
Volume 15 (Published in September 2002, 978-4086177986)
Volume 16 (Published in October 2002, 978-4086177993)
Volume 17 (Published in October 2002, 978-4086178006)
Volume 18 (Published in February 2004, 978-4086181679)
Volume 19 (Published in February 2004, 978-4086181686)
Volume 20 (Published in April 2004, 978-4086181693)
Volume 21 (Published in April 2004, 978-4086181709)
Volume 22 (Published in May 2004, 978-4086181716)
Volume 23 (Published in May 2004, 978-4086181723)
Volume 24 (Published in June 2004, 978-4086181730)
Volume 25 (Published in June 2004, 978-4086181747)
Volume 26 (Published in July 2004, 978-4086181754)
Volume 27 (Published in July 2004, 978-4086181761)
Volume 28 (Published in August 2004, 978-4086181778)
Volume 29 (Published in August 2004, 978-4086181785)
Volume 30 (Published in March 2005, 978-4086183017)
Volume 31 (Published in March 2005, 978-4086183024)
Volume 32 (Published in May 2005, 978-4086183031)
Volume 33 (Published in May 2005, 978-4086183048)
Volume 34 (Published in June 2005, 978-4086183055)
Volume 35 (Published in June 2005, 978-4086183062)
Volume 36 (Published in July 2005, 978-4086183079)
Volume 37 (Published in July 2005, 978-4086183086)
Volume 38 (Published in August 2005, 978-4086183093)
Volume 39 (Published in August 2005, 978-4086183109)
Volume 40 Stone Ocean 1 (Published in April 2008, 978-4086187367)
Volume 41 Stone Ocean 2 (Published in May 2008, 978-4086187374)
Volume 42 Stone Ocean 3 (Published in June 2008, 978-4086187381
Volume 43 Stone Ocean 4 (Published in July 2008, 978-4086187398)
Volume 44 Stone Ocean 5 (Published in August 2008, 978-4086187404)
Volume 45 Stone Ocean 6 (Published in September 2008, 978-4086187411)
Volume 46 Stone Ocean 7 (Published in October 2008, 978-4086187428)
Volume 47 Stone Ocean 8 (Published in November 2008, 978-4086187435)
Volume 48 Stone Ocean 9 (Published in December 2008, 978-4086187442)
Volume 49 Stone Ocean 10 (Published in January 2009, 978-4086187459)
Volume 50 Stone Ocean 11 (Published in February 2009, 978-4086187466)

Reference
Category Manga
Title Jojo's Bizarre Adventure
Official Name Jojo's Bizarre Adventure
Furigana Jojo no Kimyou na Bouken
Original Author Araki Hirohiko
Genre Action, Adventure
Label Shueisha Bunko Comics
Number of Volumes 50 Volumes
Mangapedia Jojo's Bizarre Adventure Series

Mangapedia