JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Stone Ocean Episode 13 digs into Ermes Costello’s tragic past

Ermes Costello and her stand kiss
Ermes Costello and her stand kiss. Pic credit: David Production

Starting on September 1, 2022, streaming on Netflix is the supernatural crime and action anime JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Stone Ocean Part 2.

In the second installment, Jolyne Cuhjoh’s story is continued as she looks into the theft of her father’s memory disc by the enigmatic Pale Snake, the Stand of Father Enrio Pucci, and her struggle to survive in the Green Dolphin Street Prison, which has grown increasingly hostile.

Jolyne in prison again

Jolyne was in a difficult situation at the end of Episode 12’s Part 1. She had been shot numerous times and charged with trying to break out of the prison, but she had managed to acquire Jotaro Kujo’s Star Platinum disc and bring it to the Speedwagon Foundation.

The last-minute failure of her attempts to find the Pale Snake user disadvantaged her. In JoJo Stone Ocean Episode 13, “Smack of Love and Revenge (1),” the spotlight turns from Jolyne to her close friend, Ermes Costello, suggesting that the jail warden may have offered her another chance.

Ermes Costello and Jolyne
Ermes Costello and Jolyne Cujoh. Pic credit: Netflix

The episode begins with Jolyne hunched over an injured Ermes. It is then discovered that another prisoner was killed, raising suspicions that Jolyne was to blame. Jolyne is not one to accept responsibility for anything she has not done, probably because of her unlawful incarceration in the first place. Therefore her lack of protest implies two consequences. Either she was directly or indirectly at fault, or—and this is far more likely—she has devised a scheme in which being incarcerated indefinitely serves her interests. On the other hand, Pucci recounts his time spent with Dio Brando and their desire to enter Heaven, the only place that may bring true happiness. The goals of the protagonist and adversary are clearly stated, preparing the audience for their impending conflict.

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Ermes Costello’s tragic past

The first scene after the opening credits is shown to be a flash-forward, depicting what looks to be daily life in the prison. Jolyne is no longer the central subject of the episode; instead, Ermes Costello is the primary protagonist. Given that many viewers would have been interested in following the development of Jolyne and Pucci’s romance, it is surprising that the first episode of Part 2 took this turn.

However, Ermes’ growth is somewhat energizing, given that she lacked urgency in Part 1. She had been Jolyne’s go-to supporter throughout the first chapter, and now that her past is revealed, her character arc has significantly changed. In a flashback, Gloria Costello, Ermes’ sister, is depicted, and the family’s sad suffering helps to understand why Ermes ended up in prison.

Ermes Costello and her stand in the Stone Ocean season 2 trailer
Ermes Costello and her stand in the Stone Ocean season 2 trailer. Pic credit: Netflix

The recently introduced Sports Maximum killed Ermes’ sister but only received a five-year sentence owing to a lack of proof. The reflection of Ermes in Jolyne originates from her deliberate imprisonment to track out and kill her sister’s killer, even severing her relationship with Jolyne and F.F. to accomplish her goal. Jolyne’s refusal to leave her companions to suffer alone makes the conflict between the three unlikely to be anything more than a minor story point.

Ermes has identified her target and is stalking him to choose when to strike. When she discovers it, Sports Maximum appears to have suffered a particularly awful fate: it has been crushed amid the prison’s sewage pipes. A better grasp of how the Stand Smack functions and just how severe it can be when used to its full extent is revealed by the development of Ermes’ storyline and spotlight.

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Unfortunately, Sports Maximum’s strength emerges just as everything appears to be going Ermes’ way. The taxidermy animals that Sports Maximum had been producing grow an invisible replica and attack Ermes, although its true nature and capabilities have not yet been fully revealed. After assessing her opponent’s strength, she can defeat a small bird, but the battle swiftly turns against her as an alligator comes to life. When Jolyne and F.F. arrive, the alligator bites off one of F.F.’s legs, seriously injuring her. Ermes was understandably conceited about her triumph and unaware that Sports Maximum had a Stand of his own.

The struggle intensifies as the episode comes to a close. With the combined efforts of the three main protagonists, Jolyne will probably come up with a strategy to free the trapped Sports Maximum before they are all eaten by the alligator. After its break, Stone Ocean Part 2 launches right into a contentious battle, and the deviation to advance Erme’s narrative aids in developing the bonds and character development of the supporting group. But before long, more context for the episode’s opening flash-forward should be provided, and the search for Pale Snake can move on.

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