Tell me (and I cannot stress this enough) what you want… what you really, really want.
Trish is stuck trying to figure out how to grab Giorno’s brooch before Notorious BIG can get to it or kill her in the process. She devises a plan as she comes across the recliner controls on one of the plane’s seats: once she presses the button, BIG rushes immediately in that direction. She’s able to get mildly close using this method, but in the middle of this, a whiskey bottle on a chair breaks and spills on her boots, sending BIG in her direction. Just as she is about be attacked, the boot suddenly slips off her foot and keeps the enemy Stand in place, much to her surprise. It’s at this moment that a voice calls out to her to pick up the brooch, and when Trish looks around to see where it’s coming from, she is greeted by the appearance of Spice Girl: her own personal Stand. Following her instructions, Trish grabs the brooch and runs away with BIG following closely behind, but she is able to jump through a chair that morphs like rubber, flinging the enemy back into the wall and actually causing some damage. As it turns out, Spice Girl’s ability allows her to soften any material she touches into a rubber-like consistency, but as she warns Trish to stay still, she disobeys and rushes into the back closet.
Spice Girl softens the door to try and help, but BIG is able to punch hard enough to stretch through and grab Trish, seemingly backing her into a corner. Luckily, there’s a clock in the closet whose hand movements are enough to distract BIG, especially once it’s turned to rubber and cannot be broken. The enemy Stand is unable to react quickly enough as Spice Girl grabs a pipe and stabs the enemy until it vanishes. The two of them exit the closet with the brooch in hand, but she and the others are caught off guard by a sudden noise from the plane. As Trish comes into contact with Bucciarati, he suddenly warns her to stand very still. To the visceral shock of everyone, Notorious BIG has recovered and to even more nightmarishly large size than before, having sunk into the engines and feeding off their energy, growing to consume the entire back half of the plane. Against Bucciarati’s warnings, Trish immediately dashes into the cockpit, closing the door and allowing Spice Girl to work its powers, punching up the entire cockpit until it turns rubbery enough to become parachute-like. The back half of the plane explodes, sending the remains of BIG into the ocean, and all seems calm for now… until the enemy Stand suddenly manifests again on Abbacchio’s face.
In a last ditch effort to rid themselves of the Stand, Bucciarati rapidly punches with Sticky Fingers until BIG latches onto his arm, and then he proceeds to unzip his arm. The last of BIG is sent plunging into the waters below, trapping it into a permanent life of chasing the movement of the waves and attacking any boats that ever venture near it. The crew is now confident that their trail has been lost and that no one could have any method of tracking them now, but as we soon learn, the boss is hiding out in a hotel room tracking their every move. He knows that they’re heading to Sardegna, and he even suspects that Abbacchio’s Moody Blues can uncover his true identity with its replay ability based on a picture of Trish’s mother. He cannot let them get to Costa Smeralda, and he will stop them by any means necessary.
After some sly teases in a few episodes prior to now, it’s finally time for Trish’s Stand to make her triumphant debut, and what’s not to like about Spice Girl? Her power is immediately striking in its use, working as a near perfect foil to the movement-based abilities of Notorious BIG. Turning everything she touches into a slippery rubber mass is a power that gets stretched (no pun intended) to its limits within the plane. Many uses for the power are explored from escape to offense and even the surreal enhanced mobility of the cockpit parachute scene. On top of that, there’s a lot of playfulness with the Stand’s presentation. When she first appears, Spice Girl is presented with her hands and head resting on her knees, with her pose mimicking the kind of album covers that would come to be associated with ‘90s women pop singers. In addition, her battle cry uttered as she punches up the cockpit is a charmingly obvious reference to the group’s defining hit single “Wannabe” which is just a fun little detail.
However, the real substance at play here is with Spice Girl’s actual relationship to Trish. There’s actually quite a lot to dig into here, and it’s all tied together excellently by how they relate to the major themes and character arcs of the series. The point that Spice Girl makes herself known is when Trish’s confidence is at an all-time low, racked with guilt at how her existence has caused pain and suffering for the other heroes. Counteracting this almost immediately is Spice Girl’s extraordinarily inspiring dialogue. She has a very protective attitude and determination when it comes to protecting Trish, saying that she’s been with her since Trish was very young. In this sense, Spice Girl is functioning not just as a Stand, but as something of a surrogate mother to fill in the role left by her actual deceased mother. There’s also a great line of dialogue when Spice Girl actually explains her powers to Trish, proudly declaring that turning things into rubber makes them “harder to break than diamonds”, which is both inspiring as hell and a mildly humorous in-joke. It all ties together amazingly well with the recurring motif of our heroes having been hurt or abandoned by past traumas and abuses.
The continued threat posed by Notorious BIG is escalated to higher and higher limits, and the imagery gets more frightening and surreal to match the menace. There’s a massive spike in tension during the moment of false security where it appears BIG is defeated only to come back and consume half of the plane. The many different shots of Trish in this sequence have BIG filling up every square inch of the background behind her, and it’s hard not to get freaked out by this. The same also applies when the plane splits in half as we get to see the pimply amorphous flesh of the enemy Stand melded into the plane itself, along with its pained other-worldly shrieks emphasized by shots of its off-putting teeth. This was a fantastic Stand encounter to watch, and I can’t wait to see where things go next week.
New episodes of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Golden Wind premiere every Friday and can be streamed exclusively on Crunchyroll.