Ultra Security House Unit
Episode 15 of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Stone Ocean begins with a flashback involving a soul-based conversation between Sports Maximum and Whitesnake. Whitesnake suggests the existing number of souls in the universe remains consistent, no matter if the number of living creatures declines. He presents Maximum with a theory about souls, but Maximum dismisses the idea.
Whitesnake directs the discussion toward Dio’s bone. He asks Maximum to use his new powers to modify and revitalize it. Maximum doesn’t know if he can do it and slightly declines his request. He states that a single piece of bone will not be enough to revive Dio. This encourages Whitesnake to threaten Maximum about taking away his powers.
Maximum folds and uses his powers to bring life to Dio’s bone. Once finished, Whitesnake looks down to see a hole in his hand. Pucci screams nearby as his hand starts bleeding out. The bone is no longer in his possession, but Maximum assures him that he can feel its presence. He tells Whitesnake that it’s heading for the Ultra Security Punishment Ward. Whitesnake realizes that Dio’s plan is now in effect and decides to follow the trail of the bone.
In a shocking twist, it appears that Emporio (Jolyne’s new child friend from season one) and F.F. were watching this scene play out through Maximum’s memory disc. Despite Emporio’s worries about Jolyne’s safety, F.F. confirms that Jolyne is aware of Whitesnake’s plan, as she had inserted the memory disc into her head before being locked up in the Ultra Security Punishment Ward. F.F. tells Emporio that Jolyne relinquished herself to the guards as a part of her plan.
F.F. still wants to assist Jolyne with her plan but feels she needs backup. Emporio confirms that Weather Report and Ermes Costello are in the infirmary recovering their wounds. He also shares some important knowledge about the Ultra Security House Unit’s structure and what F.F. will need to do to get inside. F.F. glances over at Emporio’s pink-haired friend Narcisco Anastasia. F.F. suggests asking him for help, but Emporio shoots her hopes down.
F.F. ignores Emporio and asks Anastasia for assistance. He ignores her, causing F.F. great irritation. Emporio reveals that Anastasia is a murderer who likes to keep to himself. Then, Emporio shares Anastasia’s backstory to F.F. He explains that Anastasia loved taking things apart during his childhood, but this passion ended up backfiring on him. He was condemned for the murder of his ex-girlfriend and her lover, as he took them apart. Surprisingly, the court declared he was a “sane” individual, but still locked him up for his actions.
Emporio reiterates that Anastasia isn’t someone to rely on, as Weather Report is one of the few people who can keep him in line. F.F. looks at Anastasia, who’s minding his business and reading a book. F.F. thinks it would be best to force him to help her and deploys his finger gun (the same one she uses in her fight against the invisible alligator).
Before she could fire it, Anastasia pops up beside her and agrees to help F.F. locate Jolyne. He leaves their location gracefully. Confused by his decision, Emporio heads after Anastasia and asks him what he is after. Anastasia abruptly reveals that he’s helping F.F. out because he has fallen in love with Jolyne. He’s said he’s loved her ever since he laid on her. He loves that she was willing to get locked up in the disciplinary wing to save her father. He confirms that he plans to be Jolyne’s sworn protector and one day marry her. In exchange for his assistance, Anastasia asks F.F. to help him win over Jolyne’s heart.
After explaining, Anastasia heads for an iron gate and summons his Stand, Diver Down. Diver Down attacks the gate and alerts the guards on the other side. When they open the gate, Diver Down swiftly knocks them out with one of its legs. Therefore, Anastasia’s Stand can store and delay his attacks through objects. Once stored, he can release the built-up momentum at any given time to deal severe damage to his foes.
We transition to a flashback involving a young Enrico Pucci and Dio Brando. They’re shown to be discussing Stand abilities. Pucci asks Dio for his opinion regarding the weakest Stand he’s ever seen. Dio responds that every Stand has its own set of weaknesses and advantages, so there’s no such thing as a weak or strong stand. Pucci is taken aback as he deems his question a foolish one.
However, Dio informs Pucci that his question wasn’t a foolish one. Dio reveals that “Survivor” was the weakest stand he’s come across. He informs Pucci that it’s the weakest because it’s the most difficult Stand to handle. Dio tells Pucci a story going over the history of this Stand’s user and how it functions.
This story takes place in 1982 and involves a group of hikers who ended up dying during their excavation of the French mountains. It was revealed they had murdered each other in a fistfight. Before their excursion, Dio learned that they had met a mysterious man who activated “Survivor.” Dio explains to Pucci that Survivor can emit a fragile electric signal that travels through water and effected each hiker’s brain, causing them to go rogue. Dio argues the ability was useless because it can’t distinguish allies from enemies. With his interest piqued, Pucci asks Dio for its disc to safeguard it.
We flash-forward to Jolyne in her cell. A few seconds pass, and she hears some guards yelling from the other side of her door. They inform her that it’s shower time, but Jolyne doesn’t respond when they open the door. She simply hides behind her bed to the guards’ joy. One of them orders the guard next to him to pay him, as they were betting to see if Jolyne would hide behind her bed or not.
During their exchange, Jolyne sneakily deploys one of her strings. She uses it to search the ward in hopes of finding Dio’s bone. The guards proceed to wash Jolyne through the use of a hose. This leads to water being scattered all over the cell, causing numerous puddles to crop up in the ward. Unknowingly, this activates Survivor, indicating to us that its Stand user is hiding somewhere in the ward. A guard named Sonny Likir accidentally sprays his partner, Viviano Westwood, and apologies. Westwood doesn’t take his action kindly and throws a punch at Likir’s shoulder.
Their misunderstood argument turns into a bloody brawl with a hint of crude dialogue. Although one of them wants to end the fight, Likir uses the opportunity to throw a punch at Westwood. The punch was so devastating that it causes flesh to tear away from his knuckles and Westwood’s cheek. Westwood doesn’t cry out in fear. He enjoys the idea of fighting his friend.
After this exchange, it’s revealed that they can somehow have x-ray vision (to some degree) as they admire each other’s muscles. Jolyne’s bewildered by the whole scenario and can’t believe they’re dumb enough to leave the cell door open to engage in a fight. The two guards continue fighting and eventually, Likir folds after Westwood snaps his leg. Jolyne ponders if a Stand user is pulling the strings.
We transition to Enrico Pucci, who is reading the Bible in his office. He reveals that he’s sent about four powerful Stand Users after Jolyne. At the same time, Westwood frees all the cellmates and issues them to fight each other. The episode concludes with Jolyne watching the scene unfold in horror with a deranged Westwood declaring that it’s “Fight Club” time.
The Episode Review
This episode improves upon the last by raising the challenge for its heroic protagonist and featuring plenty of unexpected outcomes. From Pucci unleashing his four best Stand users to learning more about the history of Stands, there is a lot of remarkable content to digest here. It isn’t without its share of flaws, but there isn’t a lot that bothered me either.
On a more positive spectrum, I enjoy that the anime’s challenging its protagonist more in this episode. Not only does Jolyne need to contend with Westwood’s incredible strength, but she needs to worry about the other prisoners getting in her way. Don’t forget she’s also unaware of the four formidable Stand users Pucci sent to exterminate her along with who or what is causing Westwood to act insane. This builds up anticipation for the next episodes brilliantly. It leaves a sense of mystery as to how Jolyne plans to triumph over these many hurdles.
On that note, I adore this anime for tackling a concept that’s not touched upon much in the entire JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure franchise. This concept revolves around the history of Stands. Seeing Pucci and Dio discuss weak stands is a great inclusion. This made me appreciate Pucci more as Stone Ocean’s primary villain since he’s asking questions about topics I’d never thought would be explored this far into the franchise. I hope the series can explore more of this while keeping it relevant to its protagonist’s mission.
I commend this episode for giving more attention to side characters. I found the bit between Anastasia and F.F. comedic and heartwarming. It showcases F.F.’s naivety about humans and gives us more knowledge regarding one of Stone Ocean’s mysterious characters. The animation and soundtrack in this episode were hardcore and magnificent. The fights and their accompanying soundtracks continue to please and excite me. Westwood and Likir’s is extremely gruesome and bloody. Their fight captures the same energy and looks as those in Attack On Titan and Mortal Kombat.
Although I found the segment between Dio and Pucci fascinating, it could’ve been paced better. It takes up a lot of time, and some information shared could have been removed. I had similar issues regarding Sports Maximum and Pucci’s discussion about souls. I already find Maximum to be the series’s worst villain yet and to see him take up more screen time made me a tad bored.
While I found the romantic confession scene humorous, I argue that Anastasia’s feelings for Jolyne aren’t genuine enough. It comes out of the left field and presents more questions than answers. I
Overall, this episode is certainly more enjoyable than the previous one. It raises the stakes and presents us with some hidden lore not touched upon enough in the other JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure seasons. We’ll have to wait and see what happens next!
|Expect A Full Season Write-Up When This Season Concludes!|