Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure‘s fourth part, Diamond is Not Crash, I mean Diamond is Unbreakable is quickly approaching it’s climax. It is, at least in my view, one of the best anime of the year. A large reason for this is how it tackles the power of the community.
Note: This article contains spoilers for most of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 3, Stardust Crusaders, was somewhat unimpressing. It simply had to much monster of the week that didn’t add much to the story. The cool new stands kept me mildly interested, as well as seeing Polnareff grow, but it felt somewhat inconsistent. Diamond is Unbreakable clearly learned from it’s predecessors flaws. Diamond is Unbreakable‘s fights are even more zanier than Stardust’s were. More importantly the overall theme is much more interesting.
Stardust Crusader’s story is a story about the Joestar bloodline. Their eternal linkage with the vampire Dio Brando is the core of the story. Stardust Crusaders is a grand journey with a couple of guys, and that’s what made it it. While Diamond is Unbreakable is also a monster of the week tale, it’s completely different in stakes, and feeling.
What is Diamond is Unbreakable about?
Diamond is Unbreakable is about community. From it’s first scene, it’s all about the town they live in. Since Diamond is Unbreakable all takes place in one town, Morioh, it allows for a story unlike the previous Jojo parts. One important aspect of this is that it allows the enemies to stick around. A good chunk of the enemies in Diamond is Unbreakable stick around as part of the supporting cast after being defeated, they live in the area after all. This is also made the characters available as allies as they are all new to their powers, and aren’t loyal to any greater evil. This allows us to grow used to Morioh’s growing family of stand users. It also gives a great central motivation to the cast’s conflict with the big bad, serial killer Yoshikage Kira.
What makes Diamond is Unbreakable great
Kira is a very personal threat to Morioh. He’s a citizen who’s been killing for over a decade, but nobody knows that fact. Now that he has Stand powers, it’s our heroes responsibility to bring him to justice, as nobody else has the power to do so. Kira is linked to Josuke and his crew, by their powers, and by their hometown. They both just want to live in peace, but one’s peace disturbs the others. Kira is a parasite on Morioh, and they need to remove him from the picture. Kira’s next victim could be someone they hold dear, or themselves.
One of the most heart wrenching scenes in the franchise for me is Shigechi’s death. We’d only met him a couple of episodes ago, and he’s quite a brat. Even so, seeing him crawling to find Josuke, fighting for his life against a serial killer, all to protect his friends and family destroys me. Many of the characters in Diamond is Unbreakable have fought with Josuke and crew, but they aren’t all bad people. When it comes to a threat to their home, they’re all on the same side. It’s their duty to protect those without stands from the threat of Kira, and that’s part of what makes their battle so powerful. Shigechi’s death at the hands of Kira is the scene where the theme of Diamond is Unbreakable shines clearest, evoking the emotional heart of the story.
How the environment improves Diamond is Unbreakable
The stationary lifestyle of the characters in Diamond is Unbreakable also adds a element of daily life to it all. Josuke and his friends go to school, they’re still teenage boys, but at the same time they live the double life of city defenders. This allows for a level of relatability to the characters not allowed in other parts. By allowing the viewer to see Josuke walk around town complaining about his lack of allowance, it humanizes him in a way that was hard with other Jojo protagonists.
This applies for the rest of the main cast as well. Because of the nature of the fights in the series Koichi grows a lot, and Okuyasu gets to mature as well. Even characters who don’t grow as much, like the loveable bastard Rohan. Because of this, we weren’t able to have the same types of battles in any other Jojo part, like Janken boy. The nature of the environment that Diamond is Unbreakable takes place in allows for a very special nature to it’s battles, that makes it unique, even for Jojo.
In Diamond is Unbreakable, the town is just as important a character as the people in it, which brings out a different and very different adventure then the globetrotting adventures of the past JoJos. In confining itself, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure brought out it’s full potential. There’s more to say about Diamond is Unbreakable, so I’ll probably return to it after it ends it’s run. So until then!