Saturday, July 4, 2015

25 Days of Jojo’s - #22: Josuke Higashikata

(Fair warning: there will be spoilers abound in this series of posts, as I find there are major moments that define some of these characters late in their respective story arcs. So in the event that you have not yet read/watched a particular part of the Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure storyline, you may wish to skip over certain entries.)

#22 - Josuke Higashikata: Despite all the Jojo’s of their respective parts taking center stage during the late teenage years or early twenties, Josuke is the only one to carry on a relatively normal teenage life during his story arc. A high school student living with his mother in the small town of Morioh, Josuke has grown up without a father, and gets into scuffles with any of his peers who would dare insult his prominent pompadour. At the same time, however, Josuke is mature beyond his years, preferring to talk rather than fight whenever possible, and acting as a sort of culmination of big brother, mentor, and good friend to his pals and allies, Koichi Hirose and Okuyasu Nijimura. He is the ringleader of Morioh’s would-be heroes and super sleuths, and his very existence is what brings Jotaro Kujoh to the town.

Unbeknowst to Josuke, he is part of the Joestar bloodline, being the son of Joseph Josetar. Their meeting is a bit uneasy at first, with Josuke feeling as though he has been abandoned by his father for years, but later feeling some sympathy towards the now aging and senile Joseph. Josuke certainly could have let his emotions get the better of him, could have held his grudge for the remainder of the search for local serial killer Yoshikage Kira. But instead he shows compassion and spends what time he can afford getting to know relatives Joseph and Jotaro.

Above all else, Josuke Higashikata is unquestionably among the most sincere and soft-hearted of the major protagonists, which seems to reflect positively on nearly everyone he encounters in Morioh. Local mangaka Rohan Kishibe, in all his brooding egotism, reluctantly lends his services to the search, and Yukako Yamigishi, a girl who was initially introduced as an antagonist with an unhealthy obsession over Koichi, discovers a sense of normalcy as well as friendship through the actions of Josuke and company. It only makes sense, then, that Josuke’s Stand, Crazy Diamond, is bestowed with powers of restoration, able to repair broken objects as swiftly as it can pummel them to bits.

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