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Fynn's positive life blog

Character Appreciation: Junpei Iori

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This is in no way an idea I stole from Pumpkin, no siree.

Junpei Iori is a character from the Persona franchise. He first appears in Persona 3 and all of its subsequent releases as a playable party member. He becomes a social link character as well in the female path of Persona 3 Portable, though he isn't date-able. He is also playable in Persona 4 Arena Ultimax and Persona Q. He is a Junior at Gekkoukan High, making him 16/17 in Persona 3. His persona, Hermes/Trismegistus represents the Magician arcana and he replaces Kenji as the Magician social link in the female path.

Junpei is one of the first people you meet at your school aside from your dormmates. He starts of very friendly, though he and Yukari seem to share a teasing relationship. Very soon in the story he moves in with you to the dorm, as the others discover he also possesses the potential to summon a persona.

Though friendly and easy-going, Junpei soon starts feeling inadequate and starts to question the leadership of your protagonist, regardless of their gender. Nevertheless, as the game progresses, he mellows out and accepts that you just are better suited for the leader, but that doesn't mean he can't be a hero, too.

Both in social link and out of it, we learn that Junpei has issues stemming from his father being an alcoholic. He also falls in love for a gothic lolita by the name of Chidori over the course of the game, which is another reason for him to grow up, as the tale is tragic on many levels.

Junpei is quite possibly my favorite video game character of all time. He seems like your typical easy-going friend archetype at first, but we soon learn there are many more layers to him. Even though his relationship with the main character can be strained due to his ambition at times, he becomes aware of his flaws and does his best to overcome them and become a better person, accepting that just because he can't do everything you can and better doesn't mean he's in your shadow and can't do anything to fix the world on his own.

I used the term ambitious on purpose. While lazy academically, Junpei is a man of great ideals that struggles with confidence and finding his place in the world. His loss later actually helps him accept that there are things in the world that we just can't help and it's still important to be the best person you can be, even if the person at your side still seems better at it. He learns to take inspiration from the main character, rather than trying to one-up them. Though I haven't played Arena, I know that Junpei later becomes a kids' baseball team coach, living the dream of inspiring younger people to do good.

Also, the completely platonic relationship he has with the female main character and how protective he is of her is just adorable and the social link really helps flesh him out more.

So, while Junpei may be a jerk at times, he certainly learns from his mistakes and becomes not only a true, loyal friend overtime, but also a great guy that really feels real. Junpei is one of the most realistically written characters I've seen in a game, and one that I can really relate too. For that reason, he is my favorite video game character of all time.

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  1. Rez09's Avatar
    Yay, more people doing this! \ ^_^ /

    I still really need to play these games so I can offer a more valuable response, though. ; -;
  2. Fynn's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Rez09
    Yay, more people doing this! \ ^_^ /

    I still really need to play these games so I can offer a more valuable response, though. ; -;
    Yes. You have a moral obligation to play it.
  3. Pumpkin's Avatar
    He did grow on me but still wasn't my favourite
  4. sinuosity's Avatar
    Whoa, just came across this. Junpei is the man! One of the best parts of P3P and probably my favourite character from the game. I loved how moody he was; how he'd get jealous and mad at you. It made him really human. Also, his portraits were absolutely hilarious. GOAT character