Welcome yet again to my analysis of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventures: Diamond is Unbreakable! Episodes 5 and 6 kept on adding to the JoJo’s fun with bold colors, trickery, and a new face!
Episode 5 opens with a short recap along with a tad bit more development on Koichi. Meanwhile, we get super creepy vibes from the dark colors and ominous music, paired with a death flag-like feeling from the story direction. Of course, this death flag is pointed towards none other than Koichi, who moments earlier exhibits his compassion for other people with his resolve to destroy the bow. Luckily the overpowered Josuke is his friend!
Again, we see the excellent animation in this series. There are 1000+ different ways to make a dangerous or spooky house seem completely harmless or even silly. JoJo’s has taken extra steps with camera angles, specifically the fisheye from above in this scene. All the camera effects used really enhance the creepiness of the moments, which makes for a far more engaging scene.
We then slide into a plot building conversation between Okuyasu’s older brother, Josuke, and Koichi. All of which, of course, related back to Dio. OKAY SO THAT WHOLE DAD STORY REALLY GOT ME. The collateral damage Dio caused has become a theme throughout the series. In Startdust Crusaders and Phantom Blood, Dio was a very direct influencer of the tragedies that occurred around the Joestar family. In Diamond is Unbreakable, the show has made a shift away from Dio to focus in his powers and what they mean for other people.
The Okuyasu older brother death was very morbid, yet very important as far as the characters are concerned from now on. Obviously we knew that Okuyasu would be joining Josuke and his crew from the opening and cover art, but I would not have expected such a turnout. Okuyasu’s brother proved himself to be a pretty good guy, very subtly throughout the episode. For example, he protected Okuyasu both when they were little, and when the stand “Hot Chili Peppers” tried to take out Okuyasu through the electrical outlet.
Evidently enough, this episode was not as rich as I would have liked it to be. Although the narrative is still quite strong and the characters are constantly evolving and developing, this episode felt a little bit lacking compared to the last couple.
Episode 6 begins with a sidestep from last week to focus on Koichi’s daily life (maybe?). We are immediately hit on the back of the head with yet another upgrade of stunning shots. Okay revision: this part of the episode exists not to introduce Koichi’s moral tendencies (which we already have a solid grip on), instead it is to introduce another short-man Tamami Kobayashi. Kobayashi seems to be a spin off of the usual eccentric high school grad thug; the only differentiating factor is his height and relatively cool head. Oh wow Koichi ran over a poor little kitty Of course the animal abuse in JoJo’s is present!
Okay, so Kobayashi is actually a stand user, whose ability revolves around a lock that increases in size and weight every time your guilt over something increases. The only way to release the lock is to make up for your “sins” in one way of another; Kobayashi prefers money. In this case, Kobayashi builds up Koichi’s guilt over running over the poor little kitty. Let’s take a moment to apply my stand formula (discussed last blog) to Kobayashi’s stand power. Kobayashi’s power essentially mirrors the process of atonement. He finds people who posses the desire to atone for their actions, and then grants them their atonement, while consequentially benefitting from their act of atonement. To be able to manage this mentally, Kobayashi has to do one of the following: be an opportunist, or have an earnest desire to help other people find their way. I also would not be surprised if Kobayashi possesses a heavy past full of “unforgivable” sins. If this is the case, then his stand represents something that he will never be capable of: atoning for his sins/past actions.
Let’s flash forward to a bit later in the episode (past the comedic exchange between Josuke and Kobayashi) to the scene where Kobayashi has infiltrated Koichi’s house. As of now, I am not sure what to think of this man, other than a significantly less classy version of D’Arby Sr. from Stardust Crusaders. The theme of trickery was very strong in Battle Tendency, as Joseph’s personality was well suited to exhibit his intelligence and cunning. In Stardust Crusaders, none of the characters fully embodied the excitable, yet intelligent nature of Joseph in Battle Tendency. Hopefully, Kobayashi will grow into the role, as his position in the opening appears to be quite prominent.
It was not how I expected, but I am quite satisfied how this episode turned out. Koichi and Kobayashi are actually extremely similar in regard to their stand powers, despite having completely different personalities. Both of their powers are reliant on the person who they are affecting, as opposed to themselves. As I said earlier, Kobayashi’s stand grants atonement for guilt that is existing, or that he has imposed on them. On the other hand, Koichi’s stand uses sound waves to resonate with a person’s soul. So how are these powers so similar? Well for starters, he two share a connection to the human soul through manipulation. Koichi is able to influence a person’s decision making by manipulating them with sound waves. Similarly, Kobayashi uses trickery and guilt alongside his stand’s powers of attonement. In this way, they also both play to both ends of the misery-happiness spectrum. Kobayashi gives the people an opportunity to pay away their guilt, and Koichi can send “good vibes” to people. Alternatively, Kobayashi often causes the guilt, and/or needs guilt to be present for his powers to work, and Koichi can harm others with his sound waves.
The main difference between them is that Koichi’s stand powers lend themselves more to the good rather than the bad, simply because of his personality. In episode 5, we found that Koichi is much braver than he seems, and his courageousness influences his sense of justice and tendency towards goodness. On the other hand, we can tell from Kobayashi’s thieving nature, comments about his mother never being supportive, and guilt-required stand powers, that he is much less moral than Koichi. The disparity in their personalities, yet outstanding similarities in the nature of their stand’s powers, makes Koichi and Kobayashi a good match/pair for each other. Looks aside, they are the two most similar to each other characters yet!
If you can’t tell by the screencaps, episode 6 was much more bombastic and visually exciting than last week, which was more focused on the Nijimura family narrative. This week brought back bold colors, retro combinations, swirling rooms, and unusual angles. Overall, episode six was a step up from the previous episode and I expect the next to continue this upward trend!
I hope you enjoyed my blog again this time around! If you couldn’t tell from my recent activity, I have a ton of school related work that has been taking up a fair portion of my time. After May’s end, I vow to produce these blogs weekly!