Otaku Voice
Dr. Stone

Dr. Stone Episode 1 Review

Rising from the Stone Age

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There is a speed to the first episode of Dr. Stone. Literally in the aspect of a neat montage towards the end, and overall in how much ground the show covers in the first episode. Its a great establishment of the two main character, the genius Ishigami Senku and his belligerently idiotic friend Oki Taiju. Their actions demonstrate effectively the polar opposite natures of their intelligence, but it doesn’t stop just there. This pilot establishes a deep bond and friendship between them going back years in a matter of minutes.

For as much ‘science’ put into the rest of the show, the overall premise almost seems hokey. A giant flash of light encases all of humanity in stone. The survivors are left to suffer in a state of consciousness as a statue for 3,700 years. This is an unimaginable torture being buried alive and forced to experience it only to be released to an unfamiliar world. The idea of the petrifying light seems outlandish in light of how much other hard science the show purports.

Friendship Across the Millenia

Casting aside why these two specific characters are the first freed from their rocky hell, the friendship between them is charming. For an overly intelligent person, Senku doesn’t treat Taiju as disparagingly as other shows do. He has a fondness for the lovable oaf. The first episode of Dr. Stone shows the teamwork between them. Senku has made it far in the first six months alone in the world, but without Taiju’s strength he won’t make it far.

There is a realistic sense to the survival of Senku. As a one man survivalist he spends too much of his day getting supplies just to get past the next day. Taiju’s overenthusiastic response to seeing Senku’s modest shelter is humorous. It just goes to show how impressive Senku appears to his thick-skulled friend.

Saving Humanity from the Stone Age

Without knowing how many other humans have broken free, Senku’s mission seems like an imposing task. I am not sure if this is the true ultimate goal of the series, but it doesn’t really give a good sense of how the rest of the season will shape up. I am up to see the heroes of the show struggle with survival in this almost post-apocalyptic setting. Its not the most overdone theme for an anime.

The majority of series in this scenario cite war as the reason for destruction. I like that the show doesn’t spend any time trying to explain away the flash of light from the start. If focuses the core of the show on the friendship of Senku and Taiju instead of on the freakishness of the situation. In spite of that I do expect the show to explain it all in the end.

After Humanity is Gone

There is a visceral pleasure in seeing the timelapse of humanity’s mark on the world vanishing. The essence of the passage of time is captured perfectly in Dr. Stone episode 1. The overgrowth of the buildings and the destruction of human civilization is powerful. Literally three millennia pass before the story truly begins. Its important to give a sense of time passing, and I think the first episode captures that perfectly.

I wish the show isn’t set as far into the future. With all of the destruction of the world, it would be cool to see more of the remnants of humanity overrun with fauna. As the show is now, there doesn’t appear to be much left to remember us by except for he broken stone statues littered through the environment. The future also doesn’t seem to be as evolved as I would imagine. Granted it is only the first episode, but the makeup of the world is more akin to a national forest than a far flung evolved future.

Final Thoughts

The show’s previews made the show out to be more fantasy than the hard science the first episode displays. It doesn’t help that in Dr. Stone episode 1, the main character’s hair is as ridiculous as the premise. The show defnitely rides on the back of the setting with a great dynamic between the two main characters.

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[Image via Official Site]