First Impression: JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
This wasn’t all that pleasing to watch. It’s over the top and anime never gets the deal with over-the-topness right. I’m sure people will tell you that they couldn’t stop laughing because stuff was so hilariously overblown with this episode. But don’t let you get fooled by their false praise, it’s not like anyone can tell whether this was supposed to be a comedy or not. Probably not. It’s just the way a lot of stories were like back in the days. EMOTIONS. MANLINESS. CORNINESS. TAKING THINGS TO THE MAXIMUM EVEN IF THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN BETTER OFF WITHOUT. Next to no subtlety at all. And you know me – I’m a spiteful guy with no heart or feelings whatsoever. Neither can I laugh with stuff like that, nor can I laugh at it. I should note, however, that ridiculous expressions only rarely get me anyway. Also: I’ve read Devilman and JoJo just can’t compare to that in those regards. Just look at all the intense emotions it has to offer. It’s also way cornier than this. And it had super eyebrows. Never not have them.
Let’s proceed with the presentation. Well, it exists. Quite notably. In good ways and bad ways, mind you. The choice of colors is quite good and fits the show with it’s sheer absurdness rather well. Neither the animation nor the direction are worth talking about. The show is cheap and it’s not very good at concealing that. I should have been far more annoyed by its cheapness, though, so I guess the direction must have done something right. I also can’t bring myself to like the art. Or most of the stylistic choices they were going for. Or the constant use of sound words which can get pretty damn annoying at times. Like I said, that’s just how this show rolls so it’s not like there are any inconsistencies in presentation but it’s hard to appreciate as a whole. There was also a CG mask. Just mentioning.
The way the first half was structured was far from laudable. The pacing in general was way too fast (although not a whole lot of stuff has happened so far) to make you relate to what’s going on. This sort of hurt the presentation, too, having a lot of cuts with no stomachable transitions. Things did get much better with the second half but the neck-breaking pace certainly didn’t do this episode any good.
As for the writing… oh yeah, the writing. Ugh. The show already started out with a rich family being heavily indebted to some poorfags due to some misunderstanding and poorfag-otoo-san never made use of that only so that his only son, whom he hates, could profit from it. Even when he was on the verge of death. I’m still trying to make sense out of that but it’s just not working. Upon arriving at Joestar mansion, the first thing Dio does is beat Jojo’s dog to a pulp. And then he starts to make Jojo’s life as hellish as possible. Of course, this involves a lot of misunderstandings and Jojo’s always at the receiving end, getting shit from his father despite being bullied by Dio. But Jojo doesn’t even tell his father about it. And there are a lot of ways to prove that Dio is just a massive dick. Even when Dio threatened him with a knife, Jojo did not tell his father about it. Mind you, Dio was still wielding it. Jojo could have also told his father about Dio NTRing his girlfriend. And yes, that’s how much of an asshole Dio is. Spitting on his father’s grave, stealing Jojo’s girlfriend’s first kiss, beating him to pulp and burning his dog. And the list goes on.
There’s also an abhorrent use of inner monologues as well as people talking to themselves, mainly Dio who just can’t help but tell us about every single detail of his absurd plan to take over the Joestar household. Even in situations which make it next to impossible to think about something for entire minutes, they cram in every piece of text they can get their hands on. I guess he must be thinking really fast. Or the time just stops every time he’s up to some more thinking sessions. Sure, this goes for a lot of anime but this one was particularly abusive of such stuff and contrary to K, this show prefers telling over showing. And even if things are shown, you’re also told by the characters about them. Still, the show has far less problems with that than with the never ending amount of inner monologues.
So yeah, I’m unimpressed. It’s black and white, it’s noisy, it’s not particularly well-written, it’s poorly paced, the production values certainly aren’t all that high and it’s ridiculous but there’s not much to have fun with or enough to warrant watching it just so one can mock it.
I get that a lot of stuff I’m criticizing about this show was meant to be intentional (or at least I hope so) but that doesn’t make things much better. I’ve never really been a huge fan of itiswhatitism logic and I have no plans of letting this one get away with it.