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How King Crimson From JoJo's Bizarre Adventure Actually Works

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, both the original manga by Hirohiko Araki and the popular anime based on it, is chock-full of so many big weird ideas and gonzo visuals that it can sometimes seem completely baffling to newcomers. In particular, the concept of Stands and their superpowers can be confusing even to devoted JoJo fans. As the series has gone on, the Stands have gotten both weirder and more powerful, which can make them that much harder to understand.

Each Stand is supposed to be a projection of its user's life force, so it tracks that as the villains of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure get progressively more outlandish (and they do), their Stands will inevitably follow them down that path into complete psychedelic surreality.

Perhaps the greatest example of this, at least in the anime so far, is King Crimson — the Stand of Diavolo, the primary antagonist of Vento Aureo (aka Golden Wind), part five of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. Diavolo is a pink-haired mafia boss with multiple personalities, so naturally, his Stand is going to be pretty weird too — and King Crimson doesn't disappoint.

Join us as we break down how King Crimson from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure really works.

King Crimson is a Stand of singular strength

First of all — and this is the easy-to-understand part — King Crimson is extraordinarily strong in melee combat. It tends to not just kill opponents with one hit, but also rend their bodies asunder. For example, King Crimson obliterates the upper body of a fortune teller with a single punch, and another time, it throws a pair of scissors so forcefully that they completely sever a character's foot. Those aren't the only times that King Crimson effortlessly severed limbs and demolished human bodies, but they're certainly two of the most striking. Its destructive power isn't limited to human bodies either, as we see when it brings down an entire wall with one punch.

So already, with just its basic quasi-physical strength, King Crimson is one of the most impressive melee Stands in the series, comparable to Jotaro Kujo's Star Platinum. Like Star Platinum, however, King Crimson's strength and speed are dwarfed by the power it wields over time itself.

It's also a Stand of godlike power ...

King Crimson has the power to erase moments of time, up to ten seconds from the time the power was activated. During these chronal holes in the timestream, King Crimson and Diavolo are conscious and can move around as normal, while everyone else is completely unaware of any time passing. That gives Diavolo the power to alter events and avoid oncoming attacks. It's impossible to make physical contact during the time erasure, since the moment of that contact never occurs. While that means Diavolo and his Stand can't be hurt while erasing time, it also means they can't attack others until the timestream resumes. Of course, Diavolo isn't above moving around behind someone and then having King Crimson attack them with its vast destructive power as soon as time resumes its usual flow.

Fundamentally, the idea of "erasing time" but still being able to move around and change things during the time that you're erasing doesn't make much logical sense, and thus the things it enables Diavolo to do with his Stand are sometimes hard to follow. There's a level of ineffability to Stand powers that JoJo fans have just come to accept, and King Crimson is a prime example of this fact.

... and of multiple identities

Believe it or not, it gets even weirder. Just as Diavolo has a second personality (perhaps a literal second soul occupying his body), his Stand has a second Stand within it. That face on King Crimson's forehead isn't just for show — that's the face of Epitaph, a sub-Stand that can see ten seconds into the future. That power is essential to King Crimson's Time Erasure, since it enables the forecasting of where time is headed and thus creates the opportunity to change it, but Epitaph also manifests separately as a Stand for Diavolo's secondary personality, Vinegar Doppio.

When Doppio uses Epitaph, the Stand manifests as a face on his forehead, just where it normally appears on King Crimson's forehead. Epitaph can show Doppio images of the future, although those images can be misinterpreted. For example, Epitaph shows Doppio an image of himself lying on the ground with a human foot flying through the air. Doppio assumes the severed foot is his own, but it turns out not to be.

Without King Crimson's powers, it's impossible to keep Epitaph's visions from coming to pass, but Doppio is still able to alleviate the damage foretold, such as when he has a vision of scissors in his throat and then manages to quickly pull them out without injury.

While there's a lot about King Crimson (and, in turn, Epitaph) that makes little sense, hopefully this summary has helped you understand his powers and why they make Diavolo such a formidable villain.