Well, the CASTLEVANIA’s parallels are a lot harder to miss, this time, aren’t they?
I’d really like to get a better grasp of the context the original JOJO’S manga was published in. For one, I’m curious if it was a contemporary of FIST OF THE NORTH STAR, or if it was a response to (or parody of) that series. The crew’s gone out of their way to give this series a theme song that doesn’t sound anything like the pop idol intro’s of today. Indeed, the combination of passionate, bass male vocals and lively horns very strongly recalls “You wa shock” and the theme songs of its era.
Keep that in mind, now. Then consider the intentional absurdity of every major character - - even the ascetic Tibetan monk, Tonpetty - - having a body builder’s physique. Then think about how the ridiculous applicability of ‘the Ripple’ seems to goof on the catch-all, deus ex machine quality of Kenshiro’s signature “At-ta-ta-ta-ta-ta-ta-ta!!!” technique. At this point, you really start to wonder if JOJO’s lifespan as franchise might be similar to TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES’. Both start off as blatant parodies of other comics, then inexplicably live on beyond their source material until later audiences are totally unaware of all the references.
The important quality linking JOJO and TMNT, of course, is that no matter how silly they get, they still play things pretty straightforward and earnest. With his torture of the mother and her child being a new notch in his belt, Dio has quickly established himself as a villain much more legitimately fearsome than many heels in ‘serious’ anime today.
At first, I was going to question if the ultra-violence in this series was another wink at FIST. However, I now suspect it's simply part of how things were done for anime/manga in the 80's. The most sickening, grotesque villains were thrown at innocents - - like, a frog-tongued zombie with a thirst for children’s blood - - and they were then felled with the meanest and most excessive force.
Seems like otaku today have really missed that approach?
About the Author
|Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk|