FILM CORNER - The Impact of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure
Updated: Sep 7
This is going to be a first for me to write about here. I've been a huge fan of Anime since I was a kid in the mid to late 1990s, and this popular medium from the Land of the Rising Sun is still influential to many generations. Anime has been presented to American audiences for a long time with the introduction to Astro Boy, Kimba the White Lion, and Speed Racer up to the underground video and movie titles in the 80s and 90s like Akira, Tenchi Muyo, and many others. It was around the mid to late 90s and the early to mid 2000s (where shows like Sailor Moon, Dragon Ball Z, and even Naruto) where the anime hype got bigger with the release of both Uncut and Edited episodes of shows on the home video market up to now where online streaming made Anime into the mainstream giant it is today.
However, despite me being a fan of much older series (like Fist of the North Star) or long-running media series (like Lupin the 3rd), there's only been one recent Anime series that I enjoy no matter how many times I watch it. That series is none other than JoJo's Bizarre Adventure!
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure (simply known as JoJo) started out as a manga series (which is still running since its introduction in Weekly Shonen Jump back in 1987) created by Hirohiko Araki. The series itself is based around the several generations of the Joestar family split into Parts (currently, there are eight), and with the highly detailed illustrations and action-based story lines inspired by Western media and fashion, it no shocker why this manga is popular.
However, before the ever-popular television anime premiered in 2012, the third part of the manga, the very popular Stardust Crusaders story line, was adapted into a six episode original video animation (OVA for short) and the first part of the manga, Phantom Blood, was adapted into a limited released film by A.P.P.P. Sadly, I haven't seen either of these adaptations due to the OVA being long out of print, and the film has not been released on any sort of home media (due to it getting critically panned for its butchered story line).
The current anime series (which wrapped up adapting Part Five of the manga, Golden Wind, last Summer) is produced by David Production, and I honestly enjoy their adaptation of Akari's long-running magnum opus. Of course, I'm thankful that David Production adapted the manga in its respective chronological order, where it would make sense to those who are interested to watch the series. Trust me! It is better to watch JoJo from the very beginning than to skip to certain parts of the series as it would get confusing for newer audiences on what is going on story wise. Even though the series is highly praised, many of its moments have become memes across the internet.
I can discuss all the memes that JoJo was responsible for, but one of the most famous memes is the "But It Was Me, Dio!" This was based on a moment within the TV anime's adaption of Phantom Blood where Dio Brando kissed Erina Pendleton (Jonathan Joestar's love interest) and rubbed the shocking moment with how he was the first to kiss her, and not Jonathan. The numerous memes, including the one with Dio (and recently with Golden Wind where Giorno Giovanna downs a simple cup of tea), are proof of how much of an impact the series has.
I highly recommend this series. It's action packed, full of great humor (both subbed and dubbed), and each respective part has a great story. It is currently available to stream on Hulu, and it is also available on Blu-ray and DVD from Viz Media if you prefer a physical copy.