When it comes to the anime known as “Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure”, I’m really only a fan in passing. I watched through parts 1 and 2, as well as the first half of part 3. I sadly have yet to touch the anime version of part 4, and I’ve only read a small portion of part 5. For those of you who don’t know what Jojo is, it’s an anime and manga that series that’s been running for over 30 years. Jojo is divided into multiple parts and is currently on part 8 at the moment. Each part focuses on a different protagonist in a different scenario.
One common occurrence is that our heroes are usually going up against supernatural foes, fighting psychopaths with weird fetishes or god complexes, or just having all around bizarre adventures. With each new story we got a new “Jojo”. What is a Jojo? It’s one of the protagonists of any given arc who has the word “Jojo” somewhere in there first and last name. Some examples include Johnathon Joestar or Jotaro Kujo.
So, with a history of differing protagonists, which one is the best? Which is the ultimate Jojo, the most memorable hero the series has ever produced? Well, this opinion will differ from person to person, depending on who you ask. However, in my eyes, the ultimate Jojo is the one that debuted in the second part of the story. This man is Joseph Joestar, the hero of Battle Tendency.
So, who’s Joseph? Well, he’s the grandson of the protagonist of part 1, the man known as Johnathon Joestar. Sadly, John is barely worth mentioning, as I found the character to be immensely boring. A lot of Johnathon’s personality and backstory is built upon him avenging his family’s pride and trying to stop Dio. Due to the short length of part 1, there just wasn’t enough time to build Johnathon into a truly likable and believable character.
If that’s the case, what makes Joseph so special? Well, Joseph is a lot more hot-headed than Johnathon ever was. Joseph has a tendency to get into fights that are well over his head, yet he manages to come out on top. Despite Joseph appearing to be an idiot, he often tends to out-think his opponent. This is showcased very well in the fact that he almost always accurately predicts what his opponent will say next, right before they say it.
Joseph’s combat abilities come down to the use of a special technique called “Hamon”. This allows the user to channel the energy of the sun through their body, allowing them to kill vampires or do any manner of special attacks. Joseph’s abilities are pretty unique when compared to Johnathon. Johnathon used Hamon mainly for straightforward attacks, while Joseph uses them insanely creative ways. Joseph can use Hamon to stick his bolas (which is a type of throwing weapon) to walls or even fling them back at an enemy.
Despite Joseph often been outclassed, he still manages to win due to the unique and interesting ways he approaches combat. He comes slight of hand, his own wit, his ability to think on the fly, along with his raw supernatural abilities to trump his opponents almost every time. Joseph goes from fighting low-level vampires and random street thugs at the start of the series, to defeating a god by accident right near the end of the series. The power-progression feels natural, and it doesn’t feel rushed or forced in the slightest.
Something I liked most about Joseph was his bombastic personality and general attitude about things. Joseph is a goofball and a bit of a jerk at times, but he honestly cares for the people around him. While he doesn’t think much about his lineage, he still goes into battle each time. Sure, he runs away most of the time, but still manages to pull victory out of nowhere most of the time.
Joseph doesn’t stop being interesting after his story arc ends, however. Joseph returns in parts 3 and 4, as an old man. Despite being much older and slightly more mature, Joseph is still the goofball at heart that he always was. Joseph manages to defeat powerful opponents despite his age, and gains new abilities along the way. While he isn’t the main hero anymore, he’s still a supporting character that manages to feel fairly interesting.
Joseph feels like a real person, despite his eccentric quirks. Unlike a lot of anime heroes, Joseph actually has flaws and manages to overcome them. While other Jojos have come along, they just haven’t matched Joseph in terms of memorability. While I did enjoy the thoughtful Jotaro, and the goofball Josuke, they just couldn’t compare to their predecessor.
Those are my reasons why I like Joseph. I respect that everyone has their own favorite Jojo, but for me Joseph will always be number one. Now I ask you, what’s your favorite Jojo? Feel free to reply to this post and tell me who’s your favorite and why, I’d love to hear about it! Try to avoid spoilers though, keep in mind I’ve only watched parts 1 and 2 and most of 3. I have yet to tackle parts 4 and beyond. Anyway, thanks for reading and have a great day!