JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Battle Tendency, Episode 5 Recap: “Ultimate Warriors from Ancient Times”

Original Airdate: January 4th, 2013

Toonami Airdate: January 28th, 2017

His palms are sweaty
Knees weak, arms are heavy
There’s vomit on his sweater already
Squid Ink Spaghetti

Look at that magnificent paizano
Look at that magnificent paizano.

While enjoying a meal in an Italian restaurant, Joseph catches sight of a womanizer whose presence gets on his nerves. He decides to mess with him by flinging some Hamon-infused pasta at the man, but he unexpectedly counters with a Hamon technique of his own. As it turns out, the man in question is a descendant of William Zeppelli named Caesar, and Speedwagon suspects he knows something about the other Pillar Men. When the three meet up, Caesar and Joseph immediately get into a fight, with Caesar upset at his grandfather sacrificing his life to save Jonathan 50 years prior. The two feud even further later that night as Speedwagon tries to calm them down, but thankfully the fight’s broken up by the arrival of a German soldier who agreed to drive them to the Pillar Men’s location.

ultimate-lifeforms-from-ancient-times-caesars-bubbles
FUCKIN’ BUBBLES!

Meanwhile, at the actual location of the Pillar Men ruins, German soldiers and scientists observe a strange oddity in one of the fossilized men… and it quickly wakes up to decimate a huge swath of the soldiers as he breaks free from the pillar. The Pillar Man, who identifies himself as Wamuu, quickly kills the rest of the soldiers with ease as he awakens his two masters. Caesar, Joseph, and Speedwagon arrive at the hidden location and come across the corpses of the recently deceased soldiers, and things don’t get much better when the Pillar Men make themselves known. Wamuu, the servant, informs his masters Kars and Esidisi (pronounced exactly how you think it’s pronounced) about the changes in the world since they were last awake. They discuss their plans to track down an artifact called the Red Stone of Aja, which would allow them to complete the stone mask and gain ultimate power. Our heroes are paralyzed with fear as they witness their driver die at the hands of these warriors, with Caesar in particular extremely enraged at the death of a close servant/friend. The Pillar Men simply walk away, not even really paying attention to them, but Caesar decides to make his stand here, and the episode ends with our heroes striking a glorious pose as they prepare for their next fight.

From Left to Right: Wamuu, Esidisi, Kars
From Left to Right: Wamuu, Esidisi, Kars

Ah, Caesar Zeppelli. Yet another strangely likeable douche much like our hero, Joseph. I really like how the introduction to Caesar once again illustrates the differences between this part and part 1, playing into the themes of legacy and familial bonds. William and Jonathan were both proud noble Europeans with a sense of honor, but while Joseph and Caesar both have a certain sense of loyalty to their bloodlines, it’s clear that both lack a certain sense of class in comparison to their predecessors. It makes for some really fun back-and-forth banter/conflict between the two, and it’ll get more intense and entertaining as things go on. But of course, the real highlight here is the introduction of our real antagonists: The Pillar Men, or as most JoJo fans call them, “The Aztec Gods of FitnessTM”. Their introduction is one of the most effectively terrifying moments in the entire series, and what helps it work so well is the prior battle with Santana establishing a baseline potential for their power. The image Speedwagon is shown of the Pillar Men at the start of the episode establishes the hierarchy of these 4 warriors, and Satnana’s shown at the bottom. It’s an extremely horrifying thought considering the amount of effort it took just to take him down, and when we see the Pillar Men take out humans with barely any effort at all, it makes you wonder just *what* could possibly take them down. One last quick aside, but the Pillar Men theme is one of my favorite pieces of music in this entire arc, being one of those rare combinations of trap/dubstep and symphonic elements that actually works (glares angrily at Parasyte). I give this episode 9 squid ink spaghettis/10.

What did you think of this episode? Let us know down in the comments below.

 

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Battle Tendency airs every Saturday night at 12:30 AM only on Toonami.

 

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