JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is a multi-decade franchise with a massive cast of characters. It's been a successful manga since the 1980s and a popular anime since the 2010s. Although the JoJo franchise has numerous plots, they always have one thing in common: spectacular, high-stakes encounters with progressively weird combat styles and skills.
With so much raw strength propelling the franchise, it's a foregone conclusion that some characters will perish along the way. Hirohiko Araki, on the other hand, isn't hesitant to kill off his characters and has done so on multiple occasions. There are many fatalities in JoJo's, but some are more emotionally devastating than others.
Most series would have run out of ideas after hundreds of chapters, but JoJo's Bizarre Adventure is still going strong – a testament to the lasting appeal of this legendary animanga. Many characters die during the course of the novel, many of whom did not have plot armor to protect them. As a result, we've updated this list of the series' most heartbreaking deaths.
Hirohiko Araki's Jojo's Bizarre Adventure: Stone Ocean & Steel Ball Run contains spoilers.
20 Johnny Joestar (Steel Ball Run)
Johnny was the main character in Steel Ball Run. He was a horse racing prodigy who was permanently injured after being shot in the spine. Despite his inability to move his legs, he entered the Steel Ball Run race in the hopes of discovering a solution to repair them.
Johnny perished as a result of being crushed by a massive boulder. Johnny's son had been cursed, so he shot his son with his Stand, Tusk. Johnny then shot himself in the head, but a massive boulder dropped on his head and quickly killed him.
19 Anasui (Stone Ocean)
In the later arcs of Stone Ocean, Enrico Pucci proved his ruthlessness with the evolution of his Stand, Made In Heaven. Unfortunately for Anasui, he was the first one to feel this overpowered Stand's renewed wrath.
Made In Heaven was utilized by Pucci to gain possession of Jolyne's Stone Free. Unfortunately, Jotaro did not reach in time, nor was he able to halt time quickly enough to avert the aftermath. Anasui died after being stabbed in the chest by Stone Free, but only after it was taken over by Pucci.
18 Gyro Zeppeli (Steel Ball Run)
No matter the timeline, one thing that will always remain constant in Jojo's Bizarre Adventure is that the Zeppelis will always take the fall for the Joestars. They enter their lives as mentors and usually die right after teaching the Joestars one final lesson.
Gyro Zeppeli certainly continued this tradition. Shortly before dying at Valentine's hands, he made sure to teach Johnny the last, and most crucial lesson, about the Spin technique. Gyro was one of Steel Ball Run's most beloved characters, but everyone knew his death was inevitable.
17 Jotaro Kujo (Stone Ocean)
Unfortunately, the flagship Joestar perished at the conclusion of Stone Ocean. The death of Jotaro Kujo signified the end of an era for Jojo's Bizarre Adventure. He played a key supporting role in multiple episodes as the series' most memorable protagonist.
Jotaro's death was emotional, as befitting his fandom status. For the most of her life, Jolyne believed that her father despised her because of his absence. However, Jotaro died in order to save Jolyne from Pucci. When the villain hurled numerous knives at Jolyne in an attempt to kill her, her father leaped in and absorbed the injuries.
16 Jolyne Kujo (Stone Ocean)
Just like how Jonathan died at the end of Phantom Blood, Jolyne died at the end of Stone Ocean. The original timeline began with the death of a Joestar, and it also ended with one. Ironically, both deaths took place in water — Jonathan on a boat and Jolyne underwater.
During her final stand against Enrico Pucci, she struck him with a barrage of punches. Although she got Emporio to safety, she ultimately sacrificed herself in the process. Made In Heaven cut off both of Stone Free's arms when her guard was down, and Jolyne died from the profuse blood loss.
15 Wamuu (Battle Tendency)
Throughout Battle Tendency, Wamuu acts as Joseph Joestar's rival, provoking and fighting him whenever they meet. Despite his allegiance to the villainous Kars and Esidisi, Wamuu proves to be a noble warrior in the end.
Even though Joseph and Wamuu develop mutual respect for each other, there can be no friendship among foes during wartime, and Joseph and Wamuu inevitably engage in a fight to the death. Joseph cleverly defeats Wamuu, earning his admiration. As a symbol of respect, Wamuu uses the last of his strength to protect Joseph from a group of vampires before passing on.
14 Shigekiyo Yangu (Diamond Is Unbreakable)
Shigekiyo Yangu from Diamond Is Unbreakable is introduced as a simple-minded kid, using his Stand to try and cheat Josuke and Okuyasu out of their fair share of a winning lottery ticket they all found. But as viewers get to know Shigekiyo, they learn he's an outcast without a single friend to lean on.
Fans eventually see a better side to Shigekiyo's character, but just when it seems like he's maturing, he runs into Yoshikage Kira — a serial killer desperately trying to avoid the law. To cover his tracks, Kira disintegrates Shigekiyo, who was merely 14 years old at the time.
13 Risotto Nero (Golden Wind)
In his quest to unmask Diavolo's true identity, Risotto began tracking Bucciarati's group with the intention to kidnap Trish and use her as leverage against the Passione Boss. Risotto pursues Bucciarati to Sardinia where he unexpectedly runs into Doppio, Diavolo's other personality.
Before Risotto can finish Doppio off, Narancia shoots him with Aerosmith. As a final gambit, Risotto takes hold of Diavolo and temporarily takes control of Aerosmith to kill him. However, Diavolo shrewdly uses King Crimson to avoid getting shot, resulting in Risotto's death.
12 Noriaki Kakyoin (Stardust Crusaders)
Noriaki Kakyoin also doesn't get Stardust Crusaders started to a good start. While under DIO's influence, Kakyoin attempts to murder Jotaro Kujo early on. Jotaro, on the other hand, is able to bring Kakyoin back to his senses with the help of Star Platinum. After regaining his normal personality, Kakyoin chooses to team up with Jotaro to put an end to DIO's evil.
Eventually, Kakyoin is confronted by DIO himself. Despite being hopelessly outmatched, Kakyoin fights DIO to the last end and even manages to warn Joseph about DIO's temporal control. Joseph then relays the knowledge to Jotaro, assisting in the final defeat of DIO.
11 Reimi Sugimoto (Diamond Is Unbreakable)
At about 16 years old, Reimi had the misfortune of arousing Yoshikage Kira's hand fetish and becoming his first victim. Reimi spent 15 years haunting Morioh's hidden alley after her passing, trying to find a way to expose Kira and move on to the next life. Eventually, Rohan Kishibe helped Josuke and company track down and end Kira's killing spree.
In the end, Reimi meets Kira in the ghost world and sends him off to the place where all deranged serial killers hopefully go. With Morioh safe, Reimi and her dog Arnold shuffle off their mortal coils and head on over to the afterlife.
10 Jean Pierre Polnareff (Golden Wind)
Polnareff makes a surprising reappearance in Golden Wind, playing a supporting role. He's crucial in helping Giorno and the team realize who their true enemy is, and Polnareff makes a huge sacrifice while delivering that information.
Diavolo finds Polnareff before Giorno and the rest can meet up with him at the Colosseum in Rome, and technically sends Polnareff to an early grave. On the bright side, Polnareff is able to switch his soul with Coco Jumbo, the turtle Giorno's crew had been traveling with. His soul remains alive within Coco, but Polnareff's life as a human is officially over.
9 Esidisi (Battle Tendency)
After Joseph's initial fight with Esidisi, viewers are led to believe that he successfully sent Esidisi to the grave. However, it becomes clear Esidisi was still alive once Joseph notices Suzy Q somewhere she shouldn't have been.
Sensing something off, Joseph confronts Suzy Q and Esidisi reveals that he'd been controlling her body in order to get the coveted Red Stone of Aga to Kars. After Caesar and Joseph manage to defeat Esidisi for good, Joseph commends Esidisi's admirable dedication to his comrade's goals.
8 Iggy (Stardust Crusaders)
Iggy was a stray dog who joined Jotaro's crew once the Speedwagon Foundation realized the canine was a Stand user. Iggy is living proof of the claim "it's not the size of the dog in a fight." This courageous canine fought against vampires and psychic monsters even after he lost a paw to the evil falcon Pet Shop.
Iggy is another one of Vanilla Ice's casualties, and he dies soon after Vanilla Ice takes Avdol's life. Using his ungodly Stand, Cream, Vanilla Ice bisected Iggy from the waist down and proceeded to brutally kick him until the poor dog died from blood loss.
7 Narancia Ghirga (Golden Wind)
During the battle at the Colosseum, Giorno and the rest get body-swapped as a result of Chariot Requiem's ability. There was a brief moment of confusion and chaos after the gang realized they'd been swapped, but they quickly caught up and resumed their hunt for Diavolo. Narancia, in Giorno's body, manages to locate Diavolo with his Stand's ability.
Before he can act, Diavolo uses King Crimson to effectively impale Giorno's body on some iron bars. Giorno (in Narancia's body) is able to heal the wounds, but Narancia's soul had already passed to the other side. Giorno switches back into his own body and spawns a wreath of living flowers on Narancia's corpse.
6 Leone Abbacchio (Golden Wind)
Giorno and the gang manage to pinpoint Sardinia as the original home of Passione's mysterious Boss. The crew head to the island right away, hoping to use Abbacchio's Moody Blues to go back in time and capture an image of the Boss's true face. Diavolo catches on and pursues them to prevent his identity from being revealed.
Right as Abbacchio manages to find the correct point in time with Moody Blues, Diavolo uses King Crimson to punch a hole through his torso. Fortunately, Abbacchio uses his final moments to leave behind a rather brilliant clue for his friends and comrades.
5 Jonathan Joestar (Phantom Blood)
Jonathan's epic fight with DIO appears to be over after Jonathan beats DIO at his castle, but Wang Chan later discovers the villain's severed head in the ruins. DIO is dissatisfied with Jonathan's calm life and promises to seize Jonathan's body as his own for ultimate vengeance.
Wang Chan assists DIO in boarding the same ship on which Jonathan and his young family are embarking for a new life in America. DIO tries to carry out his plan late at night, but Jonathan uses his remaining Hamon to damage the ship's engine and drag DIO down to the ocean's depths with him.
4 Muhammad Avdol (Stardust Crusaders)
Muhammad Avdol, a fortune teller by trade and master of Magician's Red, battled with Jotaro and Joseph from the start. Since Avdol manifested Magician's Red on the day he was born, he has had a lifetime of Stand experience and has grown into a great warrior.
However, Avdol's combat career was cut short following a fatal confrontation with Vanilla Ice and Cream. He's taken aback by Cream's power to swallow anything and send it to an unknown nothingness. Fortunately, Avdol was able to save Polnareff from the same fate, if only narrowly.
3 Will Anthonio Zeppeli (Phantom Blood)
Jonathan Joestar spends the most of Phantom Blood putting up with Dio Brando's torture and avoiding vampires. Jonathan encounters Will A. Zeppeli, a Hamon master who adopts Jonathan as a disciple during his lowest hour. In many ways, Zeppeli takes on the role of Jonathan's late father.
Unfortunately, near the end of the story, DIO takes another father figure from Jonathan. Tarkus, DIO's undead knight, attacks Jonathan and Zeppeli, nearly killing both. Zeppeli, on the other hand, is prepared for this momentous encounter and sacrifices his life, allowing Jonathan to complete his quest to shatter the Stone Mask.
2 Bruno Bucciarati (Golden Wind)
At the beginning of Golden Wind, Giorno comes to blows with the gangster Bruno Bucciarati. Like previous JoJos before him, Giorno Giovanna battles his adversary before successfully transforming Bucciarati into a comrade. Unfortunately, Bruno's travels are jeopardized when he encounters Diavolo and his Stand, King Crimson.
Diavolo brutally attacks Bucciarati to protect his identity, mortally wounding the young mobster. Giorno uses his Stand's powers to try and resurrect Bucciarati, but he's only able to give Bucciarati borrowed time. Near the end of Golden Wind, Bucciarati's time runs out, allowing him to ascend to heaven.
1 Caesar Zeppeli (Battle Tendency)
Caesar is Will A. Zeppeli's grandson, and (in his opinion) Jonathan Joestar caused his grandfather's death. This rightly turned him against Joseph. However, with time, Joseph and Caesar bury their differences and form a brotherly friendship. But it doesn't mean the two never argued.
Caesar, in an awful case of surrogate sibling rivalry, disregards Joseph's advise and leaves their squad. Caesar must confront Wamuu alone due to his arrogance. He almost triumphs, but he provides Wamuu an opening that seals his death. Caesar's death had a negative impact on both his friends and the JoJo fandom.
NEXT: 15 Strange & Action-Packed Anime To Watch If You Like Jojo's Bizarre Adventure