Dio Brando, not Jonathan Joestar, is the true protagonist of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, a fact revealed by author Hirohiko Araki. Araki’s priority has always been to draw and build the character of Dio, making him extremely powerful and the ultimate villain. Jonathan Joestar, while the first Joestar and a symbol of justice, is portrayed as a passive character who reacts to Dio’s choices, making him less important to the story.
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure is a beloved Shonen series, largely defined by its unique and creative cast of characters. However, one thing many viewers may not know is that, although Jonathan Joestar was the original main character of the series, he was never actually the main character of Phantom Blood, that privilege falls under about his adoptive brother and nemesis, Dio Brando. , instead of.
The idea of a villain becoming the protagonist may seem surprising at first, but more attentive fans will surely realize Dio’s role in the story is much more important. As revealed by author Hirohiko Araki in a series of interviews included in a special release called JoJonium, this was entirely intentional from the beginning.
Dio is always Araki’s top priority
Created by David Productions, based on the original manga by Hirohiko Araki
According to Araki’s own admission, “The title of the series is JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, but first of all, I really wanted to draw Dio.” It’s clear that Dio’s characterization and design were always his focus, even before coming up with the idea for Jonathan Joestar. Naming him after the Italian word for “god,” he always knew that he wanted Dio to be extremely powerful, as well as the ultimate villain – manipulative, controlling, and extremely intelligent. In fact, ensuring that was so important to him that he didn’t even think about Dio’s weakness at the time. However, although making him strong led to a more engaging and suspenseful story, it also created problems for Araki himself, who had to come up with a suitable death for the character.
“However, it is difficult to find a way to defeat him.” – Hirohiko Araki
Jonathan is built on contrast
In JJBA Part 1, Dio and Jonathan’s determination of their differences led to the central conflict in the story.
While Dio was supposed to be a unique and compelling villain, Jonathan was never intended to be anything more than the first Joestar. He was written as a model of dignity and justice, a cookie-cutter hero whose boundless courage and kindness could inspire others. Furthermore, he was never in the forefront of the story’s events. Instead, he has always been more passive, simply reacting to Dio’s choices and actions, finding his own purpose along the way. Even his character design is a reference to Dio, with Araki only making him unrealistically muscular in preparation for his inevitable battles.
“Maybe this ties in with me as an author, growing with my personality as I draw him. Just as Jonathan was unsure about how to live his life, I wasn’t sure where to take the character. Maybe I have grown as an author.” a little bit with Jonathan as he works through his troubles.”
The fact that Jonathan is a distinctly more generic character, with future generations superior to him in every way, also hasn’t gone unnoticed by fans, with many considering him one of the weaker JoJo protagonists best. On the other hand, Dio Brando, or DIO, as he was later called, became one of the most iconic and recognizable villains of the series, playing the villain not only in Phantom Blood but also in Stardust Crusaders. . Furthermore, he is also the one who pushed Enrico Pucci, the villain of Stone Ocean, into his path of villainy.
Jonathan Joestar and Dio Brando were originally designed as a contrasting pair, one representing justice and one representing evil, but their evolution throughout the series was very different, with one clearly plays a more important role in the story than the other. However, regardless of who Araki prioritizes or is a fan favorite, it’s safe to say that they’re both great characters and extremely memorable without that. JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure will never become what it is today.
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Source: JoJonium Vol. 1-3