- For a similar character, see Diego Brando
Dio Brando (ディオ・ブランドー Dio Burandō), later known simply as DIO (
Originally a man of low birth but peerless ambition, Dio is a villain of little conscience, vast cunning, and an insatiable hunger for power. After becoming a vampire and later a Stand user, Dio has gathered around him many minions and is responsible for many major events of the series, from the death of Jonathan Joestar to the Joestar Family's sudden acquisition of Stand power, and his legacy persists throughout the series.
When he first arrives at the Joestar Estate, Dio is seen wearing typical formal boy's attire from that era; a blue coat, white dress shirt, a tie, suspenders, breeches, and a pair of striped socks. He has blond hair and a handsome face. He also has 3 moles on the lobule of his left ear.
- When boxing, he wears a shirt with folded sleeves, overalls, and boxing gloves.
Aside from replacing his coat with a vest, Dio's attire hasn't had much change. However, his overall physique and height have increased significantly. During the events where Jonathan sets out to find the antidote for his father's illness, Dio dons a top hat and a new, flamboyant-looking cloak that has feathers jutting out of the shoulders.
Dio undergoes drastic physical changes upon using the Stone Mask to transform himself into a vampire. His formerly-clean hair becomes messy and unkempt, his eyes become sharper and adopt a darker outline, and he develops fangs.
His clothing has changed quite a bit as well after his first battle with Jonathan; most noticeable is the scarf around his neck. He wears an ornate dual-colored shirt and matching breeches, a large pair of boots, vambraces, and two suspenders attached to a band around his waist.
Evil Incarnate / Shadow
DIO does not have a visible face as an effect of the shadowy darkness of his mansion. He has shoulder-length blond hair and is topless, exposing Jonathan's muscular body (on which his head is sewn in place) He wears pants with suspenders, clogs, shiny cuffs on both wrists, and heart-shaped knee guards. In the JoJo's Bizarre Adventure arcade game, his voice is also extra distorted compared to the standard filter used for his other playable version (an effect created by the developers to add a sense of mystery). This form of DIO is commonly referred to as Evil Incarnate DIO (邪悪の化身ディオ Ja'aku no Keshin DIO) or Shadow DIO in certain English localizations.
Incorporating his previous outfit, DIO dons a jacket with a tight tank-top underneath, as well as chaps with an exposed crotch. His face is now in full-view, and on his head is a heart-adorned circlet to match his knee guards. This is his form during the beginning of the DIO's World story arc. In most depictions of him, DIO's outfit is tinted orange or yellow.
He also wears a necklace covering his neck scar and heart motifs above his feet and on his pant legs, but he quickly stopped sporting them after his first stairway confrontation with Polnareff.
When pursuing the Joestar group, DIO donned a cloak that he ended up discarding during his confrontation with Kakyoin.
DIO nears his physical peak after draining Joseph Joestar's blood. His appearance now is similar to his revealed form, minus the jacket and the heart-shaped headband that was destroyed by Star Platinum's attacks. He now sports a deranged and homicidal look and mannerisms, having lost his suave touch. His hair is now disheveled and mostly oriented upwards, while his lips are darker and seem adorned with lipstick. This is his main form during the latter half of the DIO's World story arc, often called his 'High' or 'Awakened' form.
Dio is consistently manipulative and violently domineering, and has repeatedly shown a lack of conscience and empathy.
Dio's most recognizable characteristics are his boundless ambition and his love of power. Abused by his father and having lived in the most miserable living conditions, Dio set for himself the goal of becoming the richest, then the most powerful being on Earth. To do so, Dio used anything or anyone that he could in order to further his goals, disregarding any kind of morality that would restrain the range of actions available to him. Using either manipulation, seduction, or plain violence, Dio constantly sought to become more and more powerful. Dio enjoys being in a position of power and has repeatedly stated how great he felt being in a dominating position. On the contrary, Dio never tolerated that someone could stand up to him or equal him in power, and was enraged and deeply disturbed at the thought several times.
Throughout his life, Dio has tended to surround himself with witless cronies and later minions, who were attracted by his natural charisma. Not thinking much of them at first, he then selected those he deemed as particularly evil, claiming that an evil person wasn't bound by rules such as honor and thus were stronger mentally. This belief culminated in including the absorption of 36 souls of sinners, or, as he claims, particularly strong souls, to unlock a power greater than that of his Stand, The World.
Naturally, Dio is an incredibly-selfish person, only looking over his own interest and overlooking those of others at best, trampling them on the ground at worst. Due to his composed nature, Dio can and will manipulate and take what he can from all sorts of people, using any method, as long as the person suits his present desires. Since he is selfishly interested in their capabilities, however, Dio is the type who is incapable of loving another person wholeheartedly. The only people he can be said to have held some type of affection for were his mother, Jonathan Joestar, and Enrico Pucci; Dio recognizing Jonathan's worth as equal to his own, and having been friends with Pucci. Still, Dio stole the former's body and his friendship with the latter was proven nonetheless beneficial of a grander plan to further himself.
When interacting with someone, Dio will constantly try to manipulate them and sway them into his side, using a veneer of gentleness and his natural charm to make people admire and like him. For instance, he acted the model son and popular charismatic friend to Jonathan's father and entourage to better isolate him, and as a Vampire, his charisma only increased as he appeared as a charming mysterious individual. However, his natural arrogance would lead him to openly insult and belittle his enemies, notably disparaging their insignificant strength before his vampiric or Stand powers.
Dio approaches obstacles and problems in a number of ways depending on the situation and his mood. When he was human, Dio was careful and methodical in trying to break Jonathan's spirit and slowly poisoned George for a sizeable period of time, only being thwarted due to unlucky twists of fate. As a Vampire, DIO at first let his arrogance get the better of him and took a laissez-faire approach, only sending subordinates to kill the Joestar Group while he rested and recovered. However, his defeat by Jonathan taught him to be wary of the Joestar Family in its entirety, thus he would later ambush Jonathan and, during the events of Stardust Crusaders, send his minions to delay the Joestars as much as possible to recover strength. During his final battle, his wariness, tactical acumen and arrogance would clash to make Dio alternate between meticulous approach and overconfident attacks.
Part 1 - Phantom Blood
In Phantom Blood, Dio is ambitious, selfish, arrogant, callous and megalomaniacal, seemingly able to do anything to achieve his aims.
His natural ruthlessness is exposed very early when plans to exploit the Joestar family despite them being kind enough to adopt him. In order to place himself in a better position to replace Jonathan Joestar and obtain the Joestar family fortune, Dio used the most underhanded means to break him mentally. These methods included: humiliating Jonathan in public sport fighting, ostracizing him from his friends, and finally stealing Erina Pendleton's first kiss to drive a wedge in their budding relationship. When he is eventually foiled, Dio opted to slowly poison George Joestar I and kill Jonathan with the Stone Mask to make both deaths seem natural and accidental. Dio has shown a remarkable determination to reach his goal, never losing his drive despite the numerous defeats he suffers throughout Phantom Blood and always tried to find a way to get back at Jonathan for them.
Dio's lack of empathy is also apparent, since despite having lived for years with the kind Joestars, he never thought of them as anything more than obstacles, and is hinted to utterly resent the upper class he frequents. Dio had been maintaining a facade of a charming and agreeable person to everyone save Jonathan, yet never came close to anyone. At the end of the part, the only person Dio appreciated was Jonathan Joestar himself, begrudgingly acknowledging his valor as his archenemy and "granting" him a painless death, and was even shocked to see him die. Overjoyed to have changed into a powerful vampire, Dio spent his battles taunting various humans about their weaknesses and belittling them in favor of the apex predator vampires. Dio also sadistically changed a mother into a zombie just to watch her devour her own baby. When in a position of strength, he also tends to torment them further, such as sneakily sticking his thumb into Jonathan's eye during a punch.
Dio shows a lack of restraint in his violence, and is prone to murderous outbursts even as far as his childhood, notably trying to stab Jonathan when he beat him up, and violently slapping Erina. He was also incredibly cruel to Jonathan's dog, Danny, going so far as kicking him on their first meeting. When Dio was defeated by Jonathan, Dio secretly had Danny incinerated. He is shown to be utterly enraged when someone stands up to him, which is the cause for his outbursts. He himself acknowledged that his anger was a weakness, but would be all his life unable to truly control himself.
Dio's personality could be explained by his poor childhood and the abusive relationship he shared with his father, Dario Brando. Speedwagon, however, rejected this as the cause of Dio's personality, claiming that Dio was simply born this way, and that his poverty had nothing to do with it. True to that, Dio was already an immoral person but then openly relinquishes his humanity in favor of becoming a Vampire upon being cornered by the police. He trades his underhanded scheming persona for a more arrogant and hedonistic personality that is dismissive of humanity and revels in evil. Nonetheless, Dio respects determination and said much to Jonathan that his determination was equal to his own, earning him the dubious honor of serving as Dio's new host, after Dio was reduced by Jonathan to a head.
Dio's potential for empathy is implied in both the manga and the anime, when Dio is shown to have killed his own father out of revenge for the abuse against his mother, rather than as a step in his scheme to rise in society.
Dio has expressed hatred for dogs, considering them vermin.
Part 3 - Stardust Crusaders
Reappearing in Stardust Crusaders, DIO did not change much since his burial at the bottom of the ocean for one hundred years, as he remained a remorseless and murderous megalomaniac, but nonetheless he had matured a little by recognizing valor in others and being generally more calm and level-headed.
DIO does not appear frequently in Stardust Crusaders except towards the end, but is seen discussing various philosophies with Stand users he wishes to recruit, and with his already-loyal followers, particularly Enya the Hag who serves as his main adviser. It seems equally likely that DIO does this to manipulate and persuade as that he believes what he says, but nonetheless acknowledges the power and valor simple humans can have, notably respecting one's willingness to die for his goal. Wishing to quickly dispose of the Joestars, he listened to Enya and was told that she'd already sent agents to deal with them, and quietly rested in his mansion to gain more strength. Furthermore, DIO learned his lesson and stops underestimating his opponents, being particularly careful around the Joestar bloodline. He nonetheless sneered at other Stand Users' efforts to fight him, most notably Kakyoin's, whose discovery ended up being crucial in his defeat.
This time, DIO is far more calm and collected. Maybe due to knowing that his Stand The World is far above anyone's reach, DIO is more tolerant of people resisting him, and didn't react to Polnareff's taunts and insults. He even seems to appreciate Hol Horse's insubordination, which confirms the mercenary's strength, and let him go try to assassinate Jotaro. However, DIO is still callous about human life and killed anyone who would fail him, even Enya—who was, again, his closest adviser. The usually confident and cunning gambler Daniel D'Arby was driven to madness when he couldn't handle the pressure of possibly revealing DIO's Stand ability to Jotaro.
True to himself, DIO is enjoying the fact that he is wielding the most powerful Stand in his organization, being unconcerned by the heroes' effort to discover his power as he thinks they are meaningless. When Jotaro reveals himself to be able to move within the stopped time, DIO is initially very distraught but recomposes himself quickly, devising other plans to get rid of Jotaro by exploiting his advantage. The full scale of his insanity is visible when, overjoyed to have completely fused with Jonathan's body and being at full power, DIO declares that he was experiencing "the greatest high" and delightfully drills his index finger into his skull.
DIO’s final speech exposes that he is still willing to use any way to win and despises any concept of honor or revenge, ultimately using a cheap trick to blind Jotaro momentarily. However, this was all for naught since DIO would ultimately meet retribution by dying at Jotaro's hand.
Part 6 - Stone Ocean
In flashbacks placed before the events of Part 3, DIO demonstrates a burgeoning ability to be genuinely nice to another person in numerous conversations with Enrico Pucci. Intrigued by Pucci, who let him be despite suspiciously hiding in a church, DIO healed his crooked foot, a kind gesture, and gave him the head of an Arrow, which would grant him his own Stand, Whitesnake. During these flashbacks, DIO is able to open up with him on multiple subjects, and confiding to Pucci that the priest could make him be at peace. Once daring Pucci to steal his Stand, to Pucci's refusal, DIO thanked him for his fidelity, and even admitted that he feared the thought of Pucci betraying him.
It is debatable how good a friend DIO truly was, considering Pucci's good-willed nature during his youth directly opposing his later evilness and zealotry. DIO also seems to have built that friendship to further his ambitions, which calls into question how sincere it was. It is implied that he wanted to use his Stand to create a perfect world for himself and a handful of subordinates. He enlisted Pucci as his living "conscience", in case he would go crazy and veer "off track".
(The information below derives from a Light Novel not written by Araki. As such, it may or may not be considered canon.)
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Over Heaven offers an interpretation of Dio Brando's character by mixing elements present in the original material and plot points introduced by the light novel, which serves to be the real-life interpretation of DIO's Diary.
In the novel, DIO has seemingly matured past his megalomania and, due to his mother's kindness and influence on him during his younger years, developed an extreme fixation on the concept of 'heaven' - an idea he revisits when he becomes embroiled in the world of Stands. After discovering the power human souls possess, as well as the possibility that these souls can be harnessed and controlled for one's benefit, DIO tries to devise a plan to use Stand power and human souls to bring about his idea of heaven.
Apparently, all throughout the events of Stardust Crusaders, DIO had been holding meetings with Enrico Pucci as well as devising ways on how to go to heaven. He then comes to the conclusion that in order to achieve true victory and witness heaven, DIO must guide Pucci to heaven, and not the other way around. Spliced between these events are all sorts of entries, such as memories of his past life as a human and later on a Vampire, the intricacies of the Stone Mask, his musings about the generational feud between him and the Joestar Family, the life his parents had in the slums of London, him interacting with his organization, and various philosophical matters.
For what it was worth, DIO appears to have genuinely cared about Enrico Pucci, and even more so about his plan to go to heaven, stating outright that he would sacrifice his organization, his vampiric abilities, his stand, everything - just to achieve his goal of creating his heaven on earth.
- Main article: The World
About a year after gaining his Stand, DIO discovered it's signature ability of stopping time. At first, he could only do this for a very short amount of time, but by the end of Part 3, he is able to stop time for a maximum of 9 seconds. This duration would have continued to increase, had DIO not been defeated. When stopping time, DIO gives the impression that he is teleporting or otherwise moving at impossible speeds.
The ability is best known for DIO's activation and cancellation phrases The World! Time, stop! (
Having had ample time to rest and train with The World, DIO is shown to have been thorough in exploring his Stand's abilities. Case in point, it was during an experimental session during which DIO sought to test the limit of The World's speed that he discovered his time stop ability.
To give himself an advantage, DIO has tried to keep the ability of The World a secret, only using it at key moments to psych out an opponent and perform incomprehensible sneak attacks, as well as only trusting its secret to a few confidants such as Enya the Hag and not hesitating to eliminate her as soon as she remotely risked to inform the Joestars of his timestop power. However, as soon as they understood its ability, DIO dropped the secret and showed a great degree of confidence about the supremacy of his power, ultimately not caring about his secret as he was convinced that no one could do anything about it. Thus, he began to liberally stop time against Jotaro. Thanks to the free time-frame of action granted by The World, DIO has made it possible to instantly reposition himself to avoid attacks or set himself up to attack, kill enemies instantly, or even displace his opponents to toy with them.
DIO has shown a high degree of control over The World, using it to battle Jotaro's Star Platinum to a standstill, but showing superior technique in hand to hand combat by using low kicks to unbalance Star Platinum or feints to out-punch Star Platinum. However, his Vampire constitution means that DIO never showed the same care at using The World defensively at he preferred to avoid being hit at all and regenerate by sucking blood.
Unlike every other enemy Stand User in Stardust Crusaders, DIO actively sought to improve his Stand's capabilities. He notably wanted the Joestar Group to come to him so that he could suck the blood of a Joestar and sync himself up with Jonathan's body to bolster his powers further. Araki himself has stated that DIO had the potential to stop time indefinitely.
Moreover, DIO had searched a way to unlock a power even more powerful than The World, using esoteric knowledge to divine a plan to create another mightier Stand.
- Main article: Joestar Stand
When DIO awakened The World, Jonathan's body also awakened a Hermit Purple-like Stand power with semi-precognitive abilities. Similar to Hermit Purple, it can produce psychic photographs by striking a camera or a crystal ball, which DIO used to track the Joestars and their friends' current location to send Stand Users after them. DIO was even able to tell when Joseph used Hermit Purple to take a psychic photograph of him, and instinctively knew that his acquisition of a Stand also awoke Stand abilities in Jonathan's descendants.
In the light novel JOJO'S BIZARRE ADVENTURE OVER HEAVEN, this Stand shares the same name as Hermit Purple and is called "Hermit Purple #2". In JORGE JOESTAR, this Stand is instead named "The Passion" and takes the form of a crown of thorns, along with also being able to watch the futures of anyone that is blood-related to Jonathan.
- Main article: Vampire
Becoming a Vampire as a young adult, Dio Brando displays a broad range of fantastic, supernatural abilities; explained as expressions of the full, unbound potential of the human body.
Intelligence: Dio is naturally intelligent, displaying cunning and perceptiveness as well as imagination repeatedly.
As a child and teenager, Dio Brando managed to achieve academic excellence with ease, having planned to graduate from university as a top law student.
Otherwise, Dio is a cunning villain and proficient tactician in combat. Dio almost managed to get away with two murders, biding his time in order to have a perfect alibi and was only discovered by accident. Upon his return from the bottom of the ocean, DIO built in six years a powerful criminal empire spanning over several continents and which brought him many riches. In a fight, Dio is particularly cunning and perceptive, his ruthlessness making him able to exploit dishonorable and downright inhuman tactics to get ahead, such as leading his enemies into a trap, using hapless civilians as projectiles and sources of energy, or plain sneak attacks. Dio has the habit of analyzing his opponents and determine quickly a counter to their strengths, such as freezing blood in order to stop the flow of the Ripple or forcing Jotaro's bluff by throwing multiple knives from all direction so that he's forced to act during the stopped time.
Naturally ambitious, Dio constantly seeks to improve himself and meticulously studies his abilities to make the most of them. As such, he developed a freezing power akin to the Pillar Men's Modes in just a month, and in six years, discovered enough about Stands to be able to fuse several together with souls in order to create the ultimate Stand. Arguably his most successful move Dio experimented on how his vampiric powers allowed him to fuse two organisms together and used that knowledge to steal Jonathan's body.
Though he doesn't show it often, Dio has become a natural philosopher, arguing about the human condition with multiple people.
Resilience: All prior to becoming a Vampire, Dio was already an able bare-handed fighter; a skill he says he developed in the slums of London. A good amateur sportsman, during a rugby game as a young adult, he is shown to have developed high athletic ability (as well as fantastic muscle mass).
Charisma: Dio is a cunning and charming individual. In addition to Stand Users, whom Avdol and Joseph suggest he recruits through charm or charisma, he has seduced many women throughout his life.
Knowledge: Throughout both his humble youth and tempestuous maturity, Dio is often seen reading. During his pre-teens, he is seen playing chess with adults. In Stone Ocean, in conversation with Enrico Pucci, he is shown to have accumulated some wisdom within the world of Stands. Importantly, Dio is able to concoct a plan, contained in his diary, incorporating vast, unknown information as to the deliberate creation of Stands of perfectly specific abilities.
Spiritual Connection: After stealing Jonathan's body, DIO began to share a spiritual connection with Jonathan's living descendants. He notably was instinctively aware of their presence and their well-being, allowing him to track them across Cairo. Joseph mentions that DIO probably cannot distinguish between him and Jotaro, and only feel their presence.
- Vampiric Body: Dio Brando's powers, however, are all at the expense of having a body sustained by sheer willpower alone, rather than vital energy. A sufficiently powerful force of vitality - specifically sunlight or the Ripple - will negate the sustaining force's presence and disintegrate his long-unliving body.
- Jonathan's Body (former): When DIO first acquired Jonathan Joestar's body and resurfaced from the ocean, he was unable to use the full power of his Stand, and had to acquire blood from a live Joestar to compensate and fully synchronize with his new form. Once this weakness was negated, he managed to grow significantly stronger, as did his Stand.
- Dario Brando: Dio hated his father and saw Dario only as a stepping stone in his path to ascend in society. Dio's hatred stems from the abuse Dario dealt Dio's mother with his alcoholism, as well as Dio himself, to the point where he secretly poisoned to death and tricked Dario into thinking he was sick. He emphasizes this by spitting on his father's grave before leaving for the Joestar mansion.
- Dio Brando's Mother: Though she isn't seen interacting with him, it's very clear that Dio loved his mother deeply, and the abuse she was dealt by his father was one of the reasons Dio slowly and painfully killed Dario.
- Giorno Giovanna: DIO is not shown to have interacted with his son, Giorno, although Giorno keeps a photo of him in his wallet. It is unknown where Giorno got it from or if he knows of the kind of person his father was. Also of note is that DIO would drain Giorno's mother of her blood, had he not been killed himself by Jotaro.
- Ungalo, Donatello Versus, and Rikiel: Similar to Giorno's case, the mothers of all three men were left alive. However, none of them inherited Jonathan's spirit. All three only learned of their true father's identity after their fated encounter with Pucci.
- Enrico Pucci: DIO's encounter with Pucci is presumably the most prominent example of humanity displayed by him, having healed Pucci's foot when they first meet. Through the time he spends with Pucci, DIO comes to trust him enough to allow Pucci to inherit control of his plan. At one point, DIO forced Pucci's hand into his head and nearly had his Stand DISC removed to test Pucci's loyalty to him.
- Vanilla Ice: While the former is fanatically loyal to his cause, even willing to chop off his head to prove his worth, DIO annoyingly notes that Vanilla Ice often forgets about the doors after he uses his Stand, Cream, to travel via making a hole in the wall. Still DIO highly respected Ice's abilities, refusing to use the blood of someone of his caliber to heal himself.
- Wang Chan: While at first a provider of his secret oriental poison that was crucial in killing Dario and attempting to kill George, after becoming a vampire, Dio used him as a scout and aide once his head is chopped off. Despite his dependence on Wang Chan, Dio doesn't take his insults to Jonathan lightly and threatens him for it.
- Pet Shop: While not much is known about their relationship, DIO personally selected Pet Shop as the guardian of his temple while he was in Egypt.
- Enya the Hag: Enya was one of DIO's most loyal followers and supporters. Despite her loyalty, DIO secretly implanted her with a flesh bud to insure her secrecy.
- N'Doul: DIO was the first person to see N'Doul's worth which caused N'Doul to admire DIO. N'Doul was so loyal to DIO, that he killed himself in order to prevent himself from leaking valuable information.
- Johngalli A.: While there is no on-screen interaction between them, Johngalli was highly loyal to DIO, as shown when he framed Jolyne for murder and attempted to kill her and Jotaro to avenge him.
- Jonathan Joestar: One of the most impactful relationships Dio ever had was with his adoptive brother, Jonathan Joestar. He initially viewed his adoptive brother as a stepping stone and pest to be driven to despair and abused in order to gain the Joestar family fortune. After being beaten once, he viewed him as more of a threat, feigning brotherly bonds in public, while secretly poisoning George Joestar in order to get his fortune quicker. He intended to kill Jonathan with the Stone Mask, but upon discovering the hidden power to unlock the vampire powers of man, he decided to use it on himself in order to become one. After another failed attempt to kill his adopted brother, due to his ego, Dio decides to have others face him rather than turn Jonathan into a zombie himself. After being bested by Jonathan, he quickly changes his mind, only to be thwarted once again. In their final confrontation, Dio admits he respects Jonathan in a twisted sense (to the point of scolding Wang Chan for taunting him) and is genuinely shocked when Jonathan dies. Dio would use Jonathan's body as a host, defining the destiny between him and the Joestar Family for centuries to come.
- Will Anthonio Zeppeli: Due to Dio having used the Stone Mask and becoming a Vampire, Zeppeli immediately viewed Dio as an enemy once he learned about the incident at the Joestar Mansion and due to his own father using the same mask to become a Vampire himself. Dio himself is dismissive of Zeppeli's hatred towards his vampiric ways and connection to the Stone Mask, only viewing Zeppeli's mastery of the unfamiliar Ripple as nothing more than magic tricks.
- Robert E. O. Speedwagon: After hearing from Jonathan what Dio was doing to George Joestar I, Speedwagon decided to help with finding the man that sold Dio the poison. Dio openly declares that after killing Jonathan, he would dispose of Speedwagon as well for being involved. After everything that had happened at the Joestar Mansion, Speedwagon went along with Jonathan and Zeppeli to defeat Dio, knowing that he was too dangerous now as a vampire to be left running around.
- George Joestar: While George has always treated Dio with kindness and respect, Dio only saw George as a stepping stone in his quest for wealth. Thus, Dio feigned being the perfect ward to George, and even called him father despite having no such views.
- Dire, Straizo, and Tonpetty: Being Ripple Warriors, the three knew the dangers of the Stone Mask and viewed Dio as an enemy because of his use of it. Out of the three of them, Dire was the one who really wanted to defeat Dio on his own, due to having been a friend of Zeppeli's for many years and Dio having a role in his death. At the time, Straizo knew that defeating Dio was important; however, many years later, he would admit to the older Speedwagon that he was envious of Dio due to the fact he would never age while Straizo would. This envy became so much that he would later use the Stone Mask on himself just so he could become young again.
- Joseph Joestar: DIO needed Joseph in order to complete the merger of his head with Jonathan's body, secretly manipulating his minions to bring him closer and closer in order to drain his blood. At first, Joseph was unaware of his existence due to Speedwagon making sure to keep the secret of the Vampire's existence prior to his battle with Straizo. His hatred for DIO intensified, however, when he learnt the whole truth and that he had stolen the body of his grandfather, Jonathan Joestar, to use as his own. This hatred got to the breaking point when DIO's very existence threatened the life of Joseph's daughter Holy. Figuring out that since DIO was the cause of all the Stands in the Joestar family activating, it was more than likely that killing him would save Holy. That plan in mind, Joseph, along with his grandson Jotaro, his old friend Muhammad Avdol, and new ally Noriaki Kakyoin, decide to go to Egypt where DIO had gone to hide, and kill him.
- Noriaki Kakyoin: Having met DIO on a holiday in Egypt with his family and then put under his control with a Flesh Bud, Kakyoin was loyal to him and would do anything he wanted. However, upon having the bud removed by Jotaro and seeing the harm DIO was causing towards the innocent Holy Kujo, who had shown him kindness as he was recovering at the Kujo residence, Kakyoin decided to go with Joseph, Jotaro, and Avdol to Egypt to defeat DIO.
- Jean Pierre Polnareff: Like Kakyoin, he too met DIO and was placed under his control. After having the Flesh Bud removed by Jotaro, Polnareff decided to join the team, though at first for his own goals, as Polnareff theorized that DIO would know where his sister's killer would be. Even after he avenged her sister's death, Polnareff chose to stay with the group to defeat DIO. After the deaths of both Avdol and Iggy, Polnareff vowed to defeat DIO no matter what.
- Muhammad Avdol: Unlike Kakyoin and Polnareff, Avdol recognized who DIO was upon meeting him, due to having heard about DIO from Joseph. As such, Avdol knew the man was an enemy immediately and managed to escape from him before he could be put under his control. With DIO threatening Holy's life due to him activating all the Stands in the Joestar bloodline, Avdol, along with Jotaro, Joseph, and Kakyoin decided to journey to Egypt to defeat Dio.
- Jotaro Kujo: Despite DIO viewing Jotaro as nothing but an extension of Jonathan, DIO was fully aware how much of a threat Jotaro was. While Jonathan was an opponent DIO respected, Jotaro was an opponent DIO feared (although just a bit) since Jotaro could move in the stopped time. Jotaro himself however, saw DIO as nothing but a necessary evil he has to defeat in order to save his mother. After DIO had apparently killed his grandfather Joseph right in front of him, Jotaro's hatred for DIO finally intensified to where, for the first time, Jotaro was visibly enraged and acted on anger. After a long and grueling fight with the vampire, Jotaro finally managed to outwit and kill DIO.
Relationships in Over Heaven
(The information below derives from a Light Novel not written by Araki. As such, it may not be considered canon.)
- Daniel J. and Telence T. D'Arby: DIO saw the D'Arby brothers as important tools to enter into heaven. While he believed their souls were too impure to enter themselves, he acknowledged their ability to manipulate souls as useful for his own ascension.
- Enya the Hag: While the novel doesn't add too much to their relationship, DIO states that he would've considered letting her bear his child if she was younger.
- Dario Brando: While their relationship is about as negative as it is in the manga, it is revealed that he hated his father for allowing him to enter the Joestar Mansion because he thought that one act of kindness allowed Dario to get into heaven and one of the reasons he wanted to get into heaven was to kill his father again before merely looking at it as a side opportunity.
- Dio's Mother: In the novel it is revealed that his mother taught him everything he knew about the world. While DIO is unsure if heaven really exists, he believes that her death saved her from her living hell of a life. It is revealed that the words in his diary are from a nursery song she sung him.
- Unborn Sibling: It is revealed that Dio's mother was pregnant with an unborn sibling but ended up miscarrying him/her.
- Erina Pendleton: DIO respects Erina's strength and in some ways saw her as a bigger threat than Jonathan. DIO theorizes that Erina Joestar placed both him, herself, and the infant Lisa-Lisa in the casket on the boat where Jonathan died in order to escape the boat's explosion. DIO at first believes that Erina did this in hope DIO may return some day as a better man with Jonathan's body. He quickly dismisses the idea, stating that if it was the case that Erina reminded him of his mother.
Chapters / Episodes
- Dio's name in Phantom Blood is written normally, whereas it starts to be spelled "DIO" in Stardust Crusaders and Stone Ocean, and is written in English and completely capitalized. This was probably done to accentuate his metamorphosis as a villain, as well as his more intimidating, fear-mongering, and overall villainous personality.
- In Araki's top Ten Favourite Characters in 2000, DIO ranked as 10th, being the third main villain in the countdown.
- In Eyes of Heaven, Dio Brando and Diego Brando's themes are remixes of each other. This is also the case for DIO and Diego Brando from a Parallel World.
- Araki considers Dio to be 'the true protagonist' of Phantom Blood. Not only did Araki develop Dio's character design before Jonathan, Dio also makes his debut first. Araki pondered in deciding what would be the scariest factor Dio would have, and decided that "evil from the past" coming to get the present descendant would be the most frightening thing. Dio was developed with this concept in mind. After this, Jonathan Joestar's 'light' was designed to counter Dio's 'darkness'.
- In a spring 2018 interview with Shueisha's Kotoba magazine, Araki describes how Blade Runner had influenced his work back when it premiered. He mentions Dio's blond hair and muscular build in particular as being influenced by the Blade Runner character, Roy Batty.
- In a 2007 Eureka interview, Araki states that Dio is the type who would be comfortable being with a man or woman, however, he will do anything to get what he wants and would "absolutely never pour 100% of his love into a specific person."