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How Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Still Embodies an ‘80s Aesthetic

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure is known for having an iconic visual style that maintains a bright ’80s aesthetic, which remains ongoing today.

Hirohiko Araki’s JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure, one of the longest-running manga out there, has been further adapted into a hugely successful anime and even a movie. Originally released back in 1987, JoJo’s has kept the ’80s aesthetic alive and well throughout its multiple mediums — six different anime parts and eight different manga parts. Even though each part of JoJo’s differs in tone and themes, this ’80s aesthetic seems to be the one stylistic choice that remains consistent.

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure has a distinct visual style that sets it apart from other manga and anime. It does this through consistency — all parts of the franchise follow this same style, no matter how different each new story may be.

RELATED: Did JoJo’s Part 6 Make a Mistake With Its Ending Theme?

Typically when people picture an ’80s aesthetic, the first thing they think of is the use of bright colors. From the first anime part, Phantom Blood, the story set a precedent of always using a bright — and often clashing — color palette. With each color being used at its brightest quality, the visuals of any JoJo’s anime part are sure to stand out. Even in the manga, the colored pages and covers are using the same standout style seen in the anime.

Araki’s specific style of drawing also lends itself to the franchise’s ’80s aesthetic. This could be because he started creating JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure during that decade, but it’s been continued in every subsequent section. With the use of bold, thick lines and harsh shadows and shading, Araki’s visual style is highly unique and is recognized on-sight for many in the manga and anime realm.

RELATED: Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Celebrates 35th Anniversary with New Rohan Kishibe Manga

Jolyne Cujoh Jojo's Bizarre Adventure

Beyond its vivid use of colors, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure also utilizes a unique character design — from their outfits to the way they stand — that further fits into the ’80s aesthetic. For example, Jolyne Cujoh, the anime’s newest protagonist, is designed with sharp features and a skeletal frame. This is reminiscent of the ’80s style of being underweight and looking stark and mysterious, a look Jolyne embodies perfectly. Even her Stand, Stone Free, is shown wearing a classic ’80s-style pair of sunglasses in a bold green color. Together they make quite a nostalgic sight, even though the Stone Ocean manga started in 1999 and the anime released in 2021.

On top of that, the over-the-top poses the characters make complete the story’s ’80s look. They are quite famous among JoJo’s fans, who even have pose contests at anime conventions. The characters stand in nigh-on impossible physical positions, and when seen in their flashy and sometimes gaudy outfits, it looks a little ridiculous — very similarly to how ’80s models are viewed now.

Even though the course of the story and the times have changed over the last three decades, Araki’s sense of aesthetic has not. That’s one of the details that makes JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure so iconic — its visual style is striking and is easily remembered by those who watch it. It may be stuck in the ’80s, but that iconic aesthetic is just one aspect keeping the franchise so successful.

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