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Jigen is Lupin's marksman. He can perform a 0.3-second quick-draw and has an accuracy that borders on superhuman; he can shoot skeet with a handgun, explode a missile before it hits by targeting the warhead, and deflect another bullet by shooting it in mid-flight. He prefers to conceal his eyes using his hat, as it gives him a more enigmatic appearance; when one or both of his eyes are seen, it is occasionally used to demonstrate surprise. In the second anime series, it is revealed that he uses a notch of the hat to aim. However, due to the nature of the series, no single episode could be considered canon; Jigen has been seen shooting excellently without his hat, even in the very series this is mentioned in, he is seen making shots from angles where his hat's notch would be useless and even during times he is not wearing his hat at all. He is also proficient in many different firearms, such as machine guns, sniper rifles, and even a PTRS Anti-Tank Rifle.
His preferred weapon, however, is a Smith & Wesson Model 19 Combat revolver, based on the pistol's stopping power and its dependability against misfire. He keeps the weapon in a fabric holster specially constructed in the back beltline of his pants. He also feels quite naked without a gun: during an enemy attack in The Fuma Conspiracy, Jigen was unarmed (during a wedding) yet instinctively reached back, grabbed at nothing, humorously aimed his empty hand and moved his trigger finger before realizing what he was doing. Even Lupin has mentioned he should "buy it a ring and marry it already". Jigen also carries a few rounds of special ammunition such as armor-piercing shells to use as circumstances dictate. As he frequently travels by air, it's not been made clear how he successfully gets his weapon through airline checkpoints. One theory is he flies unarmed and has weapons planted at all major airports, picking them up and leaving them when travel demands.
In the anime series, Jigen is extremely loyal to Lupin and almost always partners up with him for a given mission. (This is not true in early chapters of the manga; later chapters more closely mirror the anime portrayal.)
Like Lupin, he has a sharp sense of humor and genuinely enjoys participating in each caper. He is, by far, the more pragmatic of the pair, with a cynical streak founded in failed romances (his luck with women runs from bad to worse, with love interests often betraying him or dying). He especially distrusts Fujiko and becomes irritated when Lupin goes along with one of her plans. Among Lupin's group, Jigen is the least apprehensive at taking human life. While he considers killing women and children taboo, he is willing to put down any man who offers a threat.
Jigen is also a heavy smoker, smoking about 60 cigarettes a day according to the The Mystery of Mamo DVD booklet. A running joke in the series is that his cigarettes always end up bent out of shape. His favorite cigarettes seem to be either Marlboro boxed (as in Kooky Kabuki) or Pall Mall Long (as in Mystery of Mamo); he's also occasionally seen smoking a briar pipe. Another recurring theme is Jigen's fear of going to the dentist. In Tokyo Crisis, he actually loses his ability to shoot straight (temporarily) from being distracted by an aching cavity he refuses to have fixed.
Where Lupin and Goemon both have unique sartorial tastes, Jigen is pure basics. His typical wardrobe is a grey or black suit, white or light colored dress shirt, black tie and his ever-present grey (or black) broad-brimmed black-banded fedora; the hat ranks as his most prized possession outside of his weaponry. Jigen's thick hair is typically collar-length and unevenly cut. His chin curtain beard is about an inch long and also unruly.
Jigen is the "big brother" of the group, and often serves as the voice of reason to Lupin's impulsiveness, as he must because of his friendship with Lupin as well as out of sheer professionalism. However, he has long since resigned himself to having to go along with the craziest of schemes. Jigen also has a rough temper and tends to become violent when someone passes a inappropriate crack. Of this habit not even Lupin and Goemon are safe; though devoted to both, Jigen still has historically punched or threatened each with violence for relatively minimal infractions, done more in a still-friends form of payback than a tie-severing injury.
Jigen's off-time is usually spent watching sports, fishing, gambling, practice shooting, billiards, and general lounging. He has a deep affection for spaghetti westerns and boxing. He's partial to American food, in particular steak, potatoes, and pizza. As mentioned, he smokes heavily; he also enjoys drinking beer and hard liquor, usually scotch. He rarely socializes and typically stays close to home. Due to his habitual distrust of women, he doesn't tend to date unless there's a strong mutual attraction. Jigen, like the rest of the Lupin gang, is adept with disguises and can pilot virtually any motorized vehicle, including planes and tanks. He is also a tough hand-to-hand opponent, capable of knocking out an attacker with one blow.
The Tokyopop reissues of the original Lupin comics note in their preface that Jigen's appearance and temperament are based on the actor James Coburn, especially Coburn's role in The Magnificent Seven.
Where Lupin in the embodiment of European style and wit, and Goemon represents the discipline and artistic sensitivities of Japan, Jigen is apparently rough and tumble all-American. In spite of his Japanese name, Jigen's nationality, origin and even his identy are uncertain. In some adaptations, he was a Chicago mobster who eventually escaped to Japan and changed his name. The 2002 television special "First Contact" describes Jigen as a mobster in New York who joined Lupin after failing his mission to assassinate the thief. His weapon of choice, the M19, is popular with the South Australian police, and he was seen by himself in Australia in an early episode of Shin Lupin before reuniting with the others. Other traits, such as his crossing himself and his favor for American foods and products, imply he's from some other country (and perhaps a different ethnicity) than his Japanese cohorts. The fact that he can be on the run in European countries without his race being a factor in tipping his presence (Gettin' Jigen With It, et al.) implies he can pass for Caucasian.
In the film The Mystery of Mamo, he says both he and Goemon follow Lupin around because they've both vowed to kill him. As Monkey Punch never really gave any of the characters a backstory, different film makers have their own take on it. In the manga volumes, Jigen is first portrayed rather abruptly in the first volume, appearing out of nowhere as a major character in one plot arc, though his name is spelled "Gigen." Jigen reappeares extensively in the third volume, showing up in nearly every single chapter of the manga, though he has not settled in to his persona as an enigmatic killer. His eyes are often visible, and he rarely uses a gun. He teams up with Lupin opportunistically in several capers, opposing Lupin as often as not. By the end of the first series, however, he has firmly settled into place as Lupin's most trusted ally.
The character was portrayed by Kunie Tanaka in the Japan made live action film Rupan sansei: Nenrikichan sakusen (Lupin III: Strange Psychokinetic Strategy). The famous anime series has historically starred Kiyoshi Kobayashi in the original Japanese, with Richard Epcar, Ivan Buckley and Sean P. O'Connell playing in English translations. He has also appeared in a Case Closed(Meitantei Conan) special called, "Detective Conan vs. Lupin III"
- Daisuke Jigen in the Lupin III Encyclopedia
ceb:Daisuke Jigen it:Daisuke Jigen tl:Daisuke Jigen