If you ask an American fan what the biggest, most well-known and currently running manga are they will likely throw out the Big 3 shounen fighting hits: Bleach, Naruto, and One Piece. A Japanese fan would likely give out the same titles, but you'd probably hear Jojo in there as well. Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, by unaging vampire lord Hirohiko Araki, has been running continuously for 25 years. It both influences and is influenced by fashion, music, and pop culture. If you consume Japanese media you have doubtlessly seen multiple references to Jojo even if you don't know it. So what is Jojo's Bizarre Adventure? It is a generational story. While a lot of the long running shounen battle manga are about a single central figure and their rotating support cast, there are 8 parts to Jojo, each about a different member of the Joestar family and their own distinct adventure with a beginning, middle and ending. The cast is not the only thing that changes from part to part either. One part is a globe-trotting battle adventure, another is a slice of life centered on a small town. And like George R.R. Martin, Araki feels no hesitation in killing characters and making you cry. If you follow me on tumblr, you probably know that Jojo has pretty much taken over my life recently. Here's a short summary of why: Really likable characters with a huge variety of personalities. With as many characters as Araki creates it's important that they be distinct, and he handles this with grace. The following chart explains the vague outline of the types of characters Araki creates: Incredible body horror. I won't link an image here, but Araki not only does terrible and weird things to bodies during fights, he draws it so beautifully. Speaking of fights, Jojo is the thinking man's battle manga. While there is undoubtedly a lot of fighting, once you get past the first two parts there's more or less no such thing as a power-up or a training arc. You get people with distinct and esoteric powersets going up against each other in fights where cleverness and situational awareness are the key turning points of the battle. Rather than reflecting on revenge or friendship, a lot of battles are struggles to figure out just what the fuck someone is doing and what its limits are before they kill you. I also like that Araki will never draw someone in normal clothes when he can make them over the top, and will never pose someone normally if he can make it fabulous. He actually has told cosplayers that there's no canon colors for anyone in his series because he loves to change them on a whim anyway, so they should use whatever color combination they want. He is also hugely inspired by western music and you will find characters and powers named after bands like ACDC, King Crimson, and Foo Fighters. In fact, one of the big reasons Jojo doesn't come to the states is that Araki doesn't want to change the names of his characters and Prince has threatened to sue if it comes out here. And the final reason I love Jojo: the manly tears. I have pretty intense feelings for a lot of these characters, Araki is good at making flawed but endearing protagonists who sneak up on you and take over your emotions. And of course I have to post this. I will probably make a post in this thread about every part of the manga, elaborating on what they are about. There's 3 distinct jumping-on points for the manga and we'll go over why you can start there and what you'll be missing if you don't start from the beginning. In the thread announcing the creation of this forum, I said that Jojo was a cultural phenomenon spanning multiple forms of media and I wasn't kidding. In addition to this massive, sprawling manga there's also an older fighting game, as well as an upcoming video game. There's two old sets of OVAs, and a currently airing anime (THAT HAS ROUNDABOUT BY YES FOR THE END THEME). There was recently a museum exhibit devoted to Araki for the 25th anniversary of Jojo, and that exhibit is now in the process of moving to Italy. If all this sounds good and you are ready to jump on board, another thoughtful Jojo fan has put together this amazing resource on how to get started!