Charactology 2012 (Group 2, Match 2): Dio Brando or Jigen Daisuke

(Check out the stickied post for the full bracket.)

Today’s matchup is a marquee clash between veterans; Dio’s been trying to end the Joestar bloodline since JJBA began in mid-eighties, while Jigen’s been riding shotgun with Lupin more than a decade longer.

Dio Brando

How is this character great in their own universe?

Dio Brando is just about one of the most effective, hateable villains anime has ever seen. Even before unleashing a millennial terror by becoming a vampire and turning a peaceful country village into a nest of bloodthirsty vampires, he was sticking innocent dogs into furnaces and attempting to gouge the protagonist’s eyes out. And he does it with flare. All this makes him incredibly easy to root against, the one part of villainy a character *has* to nail.

How would they be great in the other’s universe?

Just imagine the shenanigans Dio would find himself in when riding shotgun in a fiat with while providing pistol backup for the greatest thief in the world. He’s fiercely greedy and ambitions, so he’d have no problem being motivated to help in anything bringing him the cash. Everyday international fugitive life would be less of a chill party with Dio around, but it would become infinitely more fun to watch him taunting Zenigata from the back of a getaway boat. Heck, in that circumstance he could even use his signature phrase.

Jigen Daisuke

How is this character great in their own universe?

Jigen is one of anime’s all-time great sidekicks, the iconic sniper with the beard and the hat that rides shotgun in Lupin III’s sweet fiat. Packing a gruff demeanor and a bland expression, Jigen is well-built for the type of comedy where outlandish crap keeps happening to him (incidentally the type of series he’s actually in). Also, his intro episode in the newest TV series was a great bit of noir Cowboy Bebop-esque stuff.

How would they be great in the other’s universe?

The funny thing about this swap is that, if you look at Jigen’s history, he’s already gone through Dio’s character arc in reverse; he started out trying to assassinate Lupin and ended up being BFFs with him. As a persistently villainous vampire, we’d see him calmly plotting old-fashioned no-frills world domination. None of this blood-feud-with-the-one-man-who-could-possibly-kill-me nonsense. Given how close the original Jonathan/Dio matchup was, I doubt we’d see the series make it out of Phantom Blood. Unless he and Jonathan somehow made up and decided to go hit the clubs in London.

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