Amidst the hulking bodies of twelve year-old boys who look like men, and grown men whose bodies rival those of only the greatest bodybuilders, it’s easy to overlook the development of Erina Joestar neé Pendleton, the love interest of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure‘s first protagonist, Jonathan Joestar. After all, what viewer would pay attention to an unremarkable supporting character when there are bombastic fights to be had, powers to be gained, and fabulous musical fade-ins with Yes’s “Roundabout?”
The answer is a large number of people, when said unremarkable supporting character has become a powerful and formidable matron. More surprising is how easily her new role simply fit. Characterization, and character progression, are shadowy demons who often escape the grasp of even the most competent. For Erina’s transition to be so widely-accepted, the groundwork had to be laid early.
Believe it or not, anime has a lot in common with rock and roll. They both inspire great fandom, huge arguments, and sometimes brilliance that transcends pop culture into the realm of something more universally accepted as “art.” But perhaps the purest forms of both media revel in the lowbrow, the seedy, the less-than-distinguished. That is to say: a loud, primitive, vintage-sounding rock and roll record by Guitar Wolf or Billy Childish may not be high art, and neither is Kono Naka ni Hitori, Imouto ga Iru!, but they’re both fun and your parents hate them.
Somewhere between the early stomp of Eddie Cochran and the insipid horndoggery of Nickelback lies the 70s. And therein lies a metagenre deified by many a radio station across the United States and held in similar reverence by Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. I’m talking about Classic Rock.
There are plenty of kinds of classic rock, many of them terrible, although some are downright listenable. All are fair game for these characters of the “Phantom Blood” arc. I’ve included a bevy of YouTube links for your edification (and sometimes pain).