JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure (2000) 01: Scowling Men and Dick Jokes

This isn’t cute! What am I doing here?

more glaring

A little background first: I mentioned in last week’s power rankings that I would be paying off a bet I lost to PumpkinMochi soon. Way back in February, when the Super Bowl pitted my favorite team: the Denver Peyton Mannings Broncos against his favorite team, the Seattle Pete Carrolls Seahawks, we made a bet wherein the loser would have to watch a show that the winner picked. Had the Broncos won PumpkinMochi would have had to watch Strike Witches. Unfortunately, the Seahawks emerged victorious and so I now am left with the unhappy task of watching the 2000 version of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure.

I have kind of a funny history with JoJo. As you should be aware if you’ve been reading this blog for very long at all, I do not particularly care for action-oriented anime. You would need to only look at the top five shows in the previously linked power rankings to con firm my penchant for cute girls doing cute things over manly men doing manly things. That said, I actually enjoyed the 2012 version of JoJo’s Bizarre adventure up to about the halfway point. The over-the-top posing and the ridiculous visuals had a certain campy appeal to me which kept me interested even when I didn’t really care about the actual fighting. Things like Jonathan being trained to punch through walls while holding a glass of wine or Speedwagon melting a frozen arm with his burning hot abs kept me entertained throughout the first arc. This lasted until around episode 17 or 18 at which point the show started to feel more like a typical shounen adventure show and watching each episode became more of a slog week after week. I ended up dropping the show after the chariot race because I just couldn’t convince myself to take the time to watch it anymore.

Now I’m obviously in the minority here as most people thought JoJo got better as it went along. It’s also largely agreed that the Stardust Crusaders arc is the best arc of JoJo which means I probably won’t care for it if past experience is any indicator. That arc is currently being adapted in the Stardust Crusaders TV series but that’s not why we’re here. We’re here for the first animated adaptation of Stardust Crusaders, one that is widely regarded as being terrible. So I guess that means I’ll like it? I suppose I can hope for my contrarian takes on JoJo to continue but I’m pretty sure this isn’t going to be bad in the way I’m hoping. Anyway, it’s time to get this over with. On with the show:

 

0:32 – Anime-4ever watermark? I was under the impression that every show from before 2003 was subbed by KickAssAnime.

0:49 – WHAT’S IN THE BOX. Probably a naked drawing of Kate Winslet, right?

1:00 – DIOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

1:55 – Oh, this is just an episode of Futurama. Okay. The animation style seems off though…

2:50 – Man vs Head. The new reality TV sensation from TLC. Remember when TLC was actually “The Learning Channel” and showed serious educational programming? It’s a real shame that it’s gotten reduced to lowest common denominator faux-reality schlock. I guess that pays the bills and good, educational content is still widely available online so I can’t complain too much. Still, it’s sad to see part of my childhood reduced to a shell of its former self. No, I’m not stalling to put off watching this nonsense, why do you ask?

3:09 – Well that’s the end of that. I’ll assume they’re all dead. That seems like a safe assumption, right?

3:45 – Well hello there tall, buff and brooding

4:19 – THE NERVE OF HIM!

6:17 – In comparison to the David Production version of Stardust Crusaders, this visual style really doesn’t capture the campiness that makes the show occasionally entertaining. Kinda concerning

8:28 – Awful lot of scowling going on here. Real men never smile I suppose.

10:12 – I brought home the most stereotypical-looking Egyptian I could find.

10:58 – The ratio of amount of time actually doing/saying things : amount of time spent silently glaring at each other is frighteningly small in this show.

11:14 – WOULD YOU GET A LOAD OF THE MUSCLES ON THAT COCK! Yeah… I know. Sorry. I’ll show myself out.

12:30 – Well that’s one way of choking the chicke– Okay, okay. That’s the last one, I swear.

13:40 – And we’re running into the problem I have with typical shounen action in general. There’s way too much pausing to talk in the middle of combat and it really kills the flow of a fight.

17:39 – Ominous looking casket from the bottom of the sea? Let’s just break it open! What’s the worst that could happen?

18:26 – DIOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

20:30 – I’ll take your word for it since it’s hard to see anything behind those massive traps.

20:44 – SHOCKING DEVELOPMENTS!

21:46 – Got kinda rapey in here pretty quickly. I’m not sure I like this Dio guy. He seems like kind of a jerk.

23:17 – ENHANCE!

23:37 – Is he going to draw Dick Butt? Please say he’s going to draw Dick Butt.

24:58 – Is that you Nozomi?

And that’s all for this week.

Whew, that actually wasn’t that terrible but instead was more just really, really boring. I get that you have to set up the events that are coming up but at least make some attempt to give that exposition some weight and energy. And when the fighting does occur maybe give it a little more oomph? This episode managed to take a guy using a magical spirit man that lives inside his body to fight a guy with a giant flame chicken spirit and make it one of the most boring, lifeless things ever. I can only assume this was meant solely for fans of the original manga who are already invested in the characters and the story because there’s no way that set up is going to grab anybody who isn’t already intent on watching this. Just because you throw together a dark color palette with a bunch of men scowling at each other doesn’t mean you have a dark and mature anime that’s going to get people’s attention. I’m hoping for my sake that this picks up at some point because if I need to go through six more episodes like that I’m not sure I can make it.

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