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What JOJO'S BIZARRE ADVENTURE Does Better than HUNTER X HUNTER

Heroic sacrifice! Stakes! Consequences!

I swear, I might as well have a tally nearby. A new character’s introduced with a name referencing some musician or band? Check. Another character is shown who was rather clearly ripped off by Capcom? Double check.

Maybe Jeff Beck was a bigger deal in the 80’s, but a fetish-zombie named for one of his specific albums plays quite obscure today. One of you lunatics tipped me off earlier that Rose, from STREET FIGHTER ALPHA, bore a striking resemblance to a character I’d meet later. Turns out I already met Lisa Lisa; and yes, her scarf-weapon gimmick was shamelessly lifted for that game.

Hell, at this point, I’m starting to wonder if the whole concept of the hadoken - - that fundamental building block of pretty much the entire fighting game tradition - - was taken from Caesar’s Bubble Cutter. There’s even magical significance to headband he bequeaths to Jojo, in much the same way Ken bequeathed his headband to Ryu.

(I might also point out the Pillar Men’s more-than-passing resemblance to Ogre in TEKKEN, and note how that series’ dynastic struggle recalls the generational angle in JOJO’s. Another franchise with a big debt).

For a guy who was raised on fighting games, this feels like listening to that one blues record that all your favorite classic rock bands ripped off. It feels strangely familiar… and yet still surprisingly fresh, especially for a 30-year-old story.

And I think I appreciate it that much more after coming off of HUNTER X HUNTER. Araki seems to know the nuts and bolts of shonen storytelling as well as Togashi does, but the difference is that he’s actually putting some stakes and meaning into it. Caesar’s heroic sacrifice carries weight because it’s final. The conflict has a sense of urgency because we’re literally racing to an Apocalyptic conclusion with the bad guys.

Other franchises flounder because they only emulate the flash of JOJO’s, I figure -- not the baroque melodrama of it.

Watch "A True Warrior" and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous batch of episodes.

Kino88on June 3, 2014 at 5:05 p.m.
yup, I couldn't believe how many things in this series felt Like the genesis for all fighting themed anime and video Games post 70's era, it really dose feel like some grand progenitor In anime pop culture, I would even go so far as to say that Liquid Snake From the Metal Gear Solid series may have been very Dio like, too big a stretch?, but perhaps not,
takashichea moderator on June 3, 2014 at 6:34 p.m.

I have not seen or read Hunter x Hunter. It's on my watch list. After doing a marathon Toriko and One Piece, I'm pretty exhausted from the Shonen genre. Jojo is not Shonen but more Seinen, so it was a refreshing change of show for me, personally. Jojo put a better spin on its gimmicks. I didn't pick up musical references, but I love the series' Dio and Jonathan rivalry to the crazy over, the top scenes to its battle scenes.

I can't comment on Hunter x Hunter, but judging from everyone's comments, it didn't do so hot. I bet you love Magi more than Hunter x Hunter, Tom.

zaldaron June 5, 2014 at 4:28 p.m.

@takashichea: I must not understand shonen but how is this not shonen as it is an adventure story where the emphasis is mostly on fighting and adventure? It certainly isn't a drama or a comedy...

and can you be more specific with the lisa lisa reference in the fighting game and the Jeff Beck reference I missed these.

takashichea moderator on June 5, 2014 at 4:56 p.m.

@zaldar:

I'm wrong. I meant to say it's Shonen but more Seinen. It's Shonen, but for me personally, it felt more Seinen with the violence. It's not that dark of a series.

ot shonen as it is an adventure story where the emphasis is mostly on fighting and adventure? It certainly isn't a drama or a comedy...

Seinen can include a lot of different genre. It can be a slice of life, seinen show like Bitter Virgin for an example.

zaldaron June 5, 2014 at 6:06 p.m.

@takashichea: hmm ok what is the definition of Seinen then....I thought I knew but I must not...

taichokageon June 5, 2014 at 6:27 p.m.
It depends I guess. I would call Jojo Seinen but it could pass as a dark Shounen too IMO. Shounen and Seinen really have no particular definition as far as I know. They are markers for the targeted demograph. There are some series like Beeserk that could never pass for anything but Seinen. But others like Heroic Age or One Punch Man float around the line that could definitively be classified as either in my opinion.
takashichea moderator on June 5, 2014 at 6:31 p.m.

@zaldar:

Check Taichokage's comment below yours. He's more articulate than me. I forgot to reply since I'm busy making the manga merchandising table.

Dig Deeper into JoJo's Bizarre adventures

A manga series which involves (to date) eight different story arcs, each with its own set of characters-- but all of the leads' names can be read as "JoJo."

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