the_sun_is_up: Fugo and Abbacchio standing extremely close together while making model faces at the camera. (giogio - personal space invasion)
[personal profile] the_sun_is_up
I got over my JoJo's-related indecision and decided to zoom through the rest of Part 2. I'm bemused to hear that so many Western fans name it as their favorite part of JoJo's because while I did enjoy it, a) it falls firmly into So Bad It's Good territory for me and b) it doesn't really feel like JoJo's. It feels more like a prototype; it has Araki's trademark weird superpowers and even weirder posing, but there's no Stands, no musical theme naming, and no iconic JoJo's art style.

Also I figured out why I found Part 2 so much harder to take seriously than Part 5, despite both arcs being massively ridiculous. First off, the attacks in Part 2 all have descriptive names and characters shout the names when performing them. Like, an attack where the person shoots his vitreous humor out of his eyes at high speed could potentially be intimidating, but not when he calls it "Space Ripper Stingy Eyes." In Part 5, there are no individual names for attacks — instead the characters just shout out their Stand name when they want to activate it, and while the Stand names are vaguely related to the attack type, they don't actually describe it. Bruno would have been a lot less intimidating if he'd spent all of Part 5 shouting things like "Special Technique: Zipper Dismemberment!"

Secondly, the Part 2 characters have a habit of describing their attacks before actually using them, whereas the Part 5 characters describe them afterwards. When you have a doofy-sounding power like, say, creating soap bubbles, it's much more effective to demonstrate the destructive power of your bubbles first and then elaborate on their awesomeness second. Poor clueless Caesar describes his bubble attack and brags that it'll defeat the mighty Pillar Men before the bubbles have actually done anything cool. That combined with the attack naming (Special Ripple Technique: Bubble Launcher!) made it impossible for me to take Caesar's bubbles seriously. Compare this with Bruno again (because he has the stupidest-sounding power in Part 5) — I don't recall him explaining or talking up his zipper powers much at all. Instead he just starts placing zippers on Giorno's body to freak him out and waits for Giorno to figure out what's going on.

In short, Part 2 tends to rely on dumb shonen clichés while Part 5 avoids them. This isn't a bad thing though; if anything, it shows that Araki has improved his manga-writing skills a lot since those early days.

Anyway, here are some more general thoughts:

-While Part 5 was gay in a “feminine outlandishly-dressed bishies lick each other’s faces and strike model poses” way, Part 2 is gay in a “uber-masculine steroid-abusing nearly-naked men climb phallic oil-slicked pillars and give each other fatal wedding rings (and strike model poses)” way. It’s like Camp Gay vs. Macho Gay.

-Speaking of gay, I can see now why Joseph and Caesar are one of the more popular couples in JoJo’s fandom. I love the bit where Joseph returns from beating ACDC and Caesar’s like “Omg yay, you’re not dea–! Um. Ahem. I mean uh, good job or whatever. >.>”

-Joseph = least convincing British guy ever! I know national stereotypes only go so far, but still. Every time I tried to imagine Joseph talking in a British accent, even a colloquial British accent, it sounded hilariously wrong in my head. Although I’ve heard that the Joestars have Scottish roots, and I can buy Joseph as Scottish. As English? Pffffft.

-Joseph is also the least convincing 18-year-old ever, not in terms of personality but in terms of appearance. He looks like a 30-year-old bodybuilder! Of course this is the fault of the Part 2 art style which is... ugh, I feel horrible for saying this, but it’s true — the body proportions are almost Liefeldian. Male bodies do not work that way!

-Lisa Lisa = BAMF. I love how Joseph is constantly waffling between “But this is the 1930s and she’s just a woman!” and “But she’s really awesome omg squee!” I also love her sunglasses, and how when she’s wearing them, she looks like she knows she's hot shit.

-I really enjoyed Joseph’s fighting style — how he’s not afraid to fight dirty and use trickery and manipulate opponents and even act like a goofball in order to catch his enemies off guard. He’s just a really fun character to watch. He does all of the clever things that I’m usually yelling at shonen heroes to do.

-I completely lost my shit at the part where Stroheim and Cars are about to have a very srs fight to the death in Stroheim’s office, when Joseph barges in all like “HAY GUYZ, WHEN’S DINNER?”

-Poor Caesar, we hardly knew ye. Seriously he was in less than half of the arc! Araki, why do you keep introducing hot Italian guys into your series if you're only going to kill them off? :( But I did love all the scenery-chewing Joseph did what with him bellowing Caesar's name a bunch of times, and how he took Caesar's headband with him and even wore it to the fight with Wham and set it on fire in order to blow up Wham and was like "I won't lose because Caesar is with me!" D'awww.

-Lol Stroheim. Apparently a side effect of being made a cyborg is that you become EXTREMELY HAMMY.

-Lol at Wham being like "MAYBE I LIVED ALL THOSE THOUSANDS OF YEARS JUST SO I COULD MEET YOU, JOSEPH" and Joseph being like "I WILL EASE YOUR PAIN BY GUSHING MY BLOOD ALL OVER YOU" and good lord, even in its early days this series was crotch-deep in HoYay.

-I’m pretty miffed that we didn’t get to see Lisa Lisa tell Joseph about her being his mother, especially after all those times Joseph barely missed finding out.

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