After defeating the monster Doobie and saving Poco's sister, Jonathan climbs the stairs and reaches the final room where Dio awaits. Jonathan challenges Dio to one final match to avenge the death of his friends, but Dire pushes Jonathan out of way and challenges Dio himself to avenge the death of his friend, Zeppeli. Dire attempts a Thunder Cross Split Attack, but Dio freezes his legs and shatters him. Dire's head manages to survive and launches a Ripple infused rose, impaling Dio in his right eye. This gives Jonathan an idea to combat Dio's freezing by contact technique; Jonathan infuses the sword he had received earlier from Bruford, Luck and Pluck, with the Ripple. Dio jumps backwards onto a ledge and summons his army of zombies to take care of the protagonists. Jonathan goes ahead to fight Dio while Straizo and Tonpetty stay back to fight the zombies. As the battle begins, Jonathan cuts Dio's arm off and cuts him in half. Dio freezes the sword briefly, but Jonathan manages to melt the ice away by using a torch nearby. Jonathan lands a sunlight yellow overdrive on Dio, but the effects don't work as Dio puts his arm and body back together. Dio grabs hold of the carotid artery in Jonathan's neck, but Jonathan manages to break free and the two unleash one final attack at each other. Jonathan's double fist overdrive succeeds and Dio falls off the ledge and slowly melts away, but not before releasing a high pressured blood beam from his eyes.
In the manga, Jonathan uses Ripple on Doobie's snakes, causing them to devour Doobie. In the anime, they bite Doobie, causing him to melt.
There is a brief scene in the manga before Jonathan fights Dio where he is attacked by a zombie. He defeats it easily by ramming its face into a barred window. This wasn't shown in the anime.
In the anime, Speedwagon fights with a hammer, and even attempts to crush Dio's dismembered arm with it. In the manga this weapon was used in the battle where Poco is introduced. The hammer is used again only after the battle, where Speedwagon destroys the Stone Mask with it.
Page, Jones, Plant and Bornnam are introduced before their initial appearance in the manga, when they asked Dio if he wanted them to take care of Jonathan. In the manga, different zombies were used and the group only appeared after Dio is injured by Dire's rose.
Some panels of Straizo and Tonpetty attacking zombies are omitted in the anime. Tonpetty kicking a zombie away from Speedwagon is added.
Masahiko Komino was the animation director for this episode, and he's a big fan of JoJo. He preferred rendering the characters as close to the manga as possible, giving a very intense result. Ideally, it was the result we wanted for every episode. But a TV series has many imperatives to respect and we often had to make concessions. This time, the satisfaction was at its peak, we had the best animators to render the best battle. I also like the zombies' small moment of glory, where they use their Blood Vessel Needle Attack.
The fight against Dio also has a lot of iconic quotes, to such a point the fight itself begins to fall flat. Thus we thought about cutting some of the back-and-forth to accelerate the rhythm. However, it's one of JoJo's hallmarks so we didn't touch the dialogue. We mixed Dio's shout on two audio channels when he's cut in two. You really get the impression he's in the room with you. In general, we have the worthy final fight of this story.
Dio's attack where he propels his own eye goo is exaggerated compared to the manga where it simply cuts through a pillar. In the anime, we had it pierce through the clouds.