Anime Review: Dr. STONE
A world in which civilisation needs to be restored? That sounds exhilarating! But what would it take to rebuild from nothing? Would it require genius? How about brawn? No, it’d require both. Fortunately, Senku and Taiju are a genius and braun team when they’re combined. As such, they take to the task to try and free people who have been encased in stone, but how successful will they be in their endeavours?
Set in modern day Japan, Taiju rushes to his friend Senku, a genius, that he’s going to profess his love to Yuzuriha. When he rushes out to tell her, no one could expect the events that would unfold. A bright green light envelopes the Earth, turning all humans and birds to stone. No one was spared from being turned to stone, including Taiju, Senku and Yuzuriha. Until…
… Now, it’s 3700 years in the future. Taiju finally breaks out of the stone, being one of the only people back alive. He seeks out Yuzuriha and finds her at the tree he left her at. She was in tact, but then he noticed some writing on the tree – To follow the river. When he follows the river, he finds Senku, who had been back to himself for the past 6 months. Senku has been needing the muscle of Taiju, along with his genius, to rebuild civilisation – and save as many people as they can. No, Senku wants to save everyone.
Before we move on from the story part, I’d like to give a massive round of applause to the above image. This was at the end of every episode, which I think is a hugely important message to put in. To me, this screen shows that the series is quite serious about discussing science and the natural world, whilst not wanting you to do any of this without prior knowledge. I’m about to discuss the characters and how Senku isn’t particularly my favourite because of his extreme knowledge… But this screen shows why he’s such a vital character to the story.
The protagonist, Senku, is a strange one; he’s not exactly a likable sort right off the bat. Everything seems to fall very easily in his lap, mostly because he supposedly calculates it’ll happen. Whilst the whole of humanity is petrified, we are to believe he counted every single day for 3700 years, whilst perfectly petrified. I may be nitpicking a little bit, but when the opening episode tried to come across relatively realistic, this sort of line of logic is hugely suspect.
However, in stark contrast, the sidekick, Taiju, is hugely lovable. As the protagonist keeps saying, he’s a big oaf and that’s kind of why you get on his side immediately. It also helps with enjoying the nature of the protagonist as well. It’s strange, I wanted to really dislike the protagonist, but after getting to know him through his sidekick, it turns out that there’s an excellent balance between them.
One thing I’d love to point out now, they really do address the elephant in the room very early on. Whilst Senku is a genius, there’s a lot he clearly doesn’t know about. Even in the first episode, he has to ferment some wine, so he can get alcohol for his experiments. Whilst they successfully produce some wine, the next step proves to be a lot trickier, as they’re using techniques he’s unfamiliar with. It’s well written, gives him some much needed humility and makes the series a lot better to me.
We’re slowly introduced to more characters, such as the wild-like Shishio who, once revived, offers his aid. The tandem initially believe they can revive anyone at any point, but when they realise they had to prioritise, they slowly uncover the people they need to at the right times. This is a simple plot point, but it keeps the story moving in a pretty logical way and helps with the idea of them rebuilding a form of civilisation.
The artwork is pretty strange, but you know what, I think I’m going to say it reminds me a bit of JoJo. One thing I find very hard to get around is how much the protagonist, Senku, looks like a leak. Like, really, if you look at him long enough, he turns into something you’d probably eat. Anyway, this is what it looks like. I dig it.
Alright, when we talk about audio, I could go into detail about the voice actors, but I’m not great at distinguishing good voice acting from bad. So instead, I’ll briefly talk about the amazing opening and closing themes.
They’re really good. Yep. That’s all I can say. I think what I like the most is how the lyrics are on point to what the show covers.
I really have enjoyed the show, but on my first attempt, I really didn’t like it. When I first tried to watch it, I kind of got fed up with Senku, right from the get go. He is our protagonist, but has such a blasé way of getting around problems. “This is how it is because I know it”. However, I’m really glad I gave it a second chance and allowed myself to watch the few episodes that are currently out.
If you’re looking for a fun enough Isekai, then this should certainly fill the void. There’s great premise behind this; a bit different to your usual “gone to another world” fantasy. Good fun, but you may need to give Senku a moment. Once you’re past the bizarre logic of the show, it gets pretty good, with a lot of really fun moments. If you’ve watched any of this series, let me know in the comments or on Facebook and Twitter.