This is my attempt at Kohaku. You’ll see, at some point in Dr. Stone 2 she’ll look exactly like this…

Admittedly, I am an anime enthusiast. I just like it. So it’s not that surprising that I’m all excited about all these season premieres but honestly, with one exception, everything I’ve watched so far this season has been great. And I am hearing some fantastic stuff about shows I’m planning to watch later on as well. It’s super early, but this is shaping up to be a great season. Well, at least for me…

What about you Crow? Are you having a good time with anime this winter?

It’s boring if I just say “same!”, isn’t it? Yeah, this is a great season. There’s a tremendous variety this season. Maybe it’s just in comparison to the previous season or two, but this season just seems so rich and vibrant.

Oh. I’m in bold. Really, you should take bold. It suits you better!

You guys know how it goes. There will be spoilers, but but it’s worth it 😉

Just for a bit of context. I really liked the first season of Dr. Stone. It sort of snuck up on me. I thought the premise was brilliant, but then some of the early episodes were hit or miss. But by the time they got to the village, I had started genuinely enjoying each episode. The flashbacks with Senku’s dad were actually amazing, and by the time that last episode aired, Dr. Stone was a show that had become dear to me. And as such, I was waiting for this premiere eagerly.

And what a premiere!

Hear, hear! Or maybe it’s Read, read! Preach it, preach it?

It started off with some pretty basic recap exposition. Gen just explaining the events of season 1. And I was fine with it. And then I quickly remembered what I liked about the show. The recap lasted maybe a minute, at most. It was clear and to the point. And it was so well done that I think I could have started to watch the series from season 2 and followed along pretty well. Moreover, it was integrated into the narrative and interrupted by a couple of jokes. As far as they go, this was a very efficient recap. And it even gave us insight into the characters’ personalities.

Seeing Gen again, just being Gen, was a treat. And like you said, Gen was telling the story of Senkuu in a way that made our scientist prodigy seem heroic. It was almost stirring! Then Senkuu saw through Gen’s ruse and told him to get back to work. Just like that, the show’s underway — almost seemed like no time had passed since the last episode. 

And then we hit the ground running right where we left off. Senku’s village of science is preparing to face off with Tsubasa’s war tribe, and they don’t stand much of a chance. On paper…

In practice, they have the advantage of a preemptive strike and Senku’s wealth of knowledge. 

So they started us right off with one of those science quest episodes, this time to make freeze-dried food. And as usual, it was fun to watch. And accurate to the science. Except for the part where everyone thought it was delicious. I have seen enough YouTube videos of people eating astronaut food to know it is not at all delicious. Unless Senku has now surpassed current day science. Have you ever tasted freeze-dried food Crow?

Yes! It doesn’t taste anywhere near as good as fresh, but if you let yourself get caught up in the mystique of eating “food of the future,” then it’s more fun than tasty. Also, I’m not too proud to admit that I learned how freeze drying worked from this episode. Entertainment and education in one show — that’s quality stuff!

I was happily cruising along, enjoying the return of those ridiculous faces everyone makes in Dr. Stone, when BAM. Completely dialogue-free memory scene of Senku and his Dad doing a similar experiment. They didn’t dwell on it, the music didn’t swell or anything and Senku didn’t cry. But I did… 

That’s what got me the first time. Emotionally complex and mature insight just naturally woven through this wacky shonen full of physical gags. Maybe I’m just reading too much into it, but to me, this show always had a lot of heart.

As a dad, those scenes hit me hard. Like you said, those shots don’t last long, but they are so authentic and so on point that it waltzed right past my defenses. Something as simple as Byakuya Ishigam’s face lighting up when he tasted Senkuu’s take on freeze-dried foot was a solid example of “a lot of heart.” 

It was also so far that not only was it powerful, I wanted more of it!

And before I knew it, the episode was almost over. The kids were listening to some glass record of Lilian and Gen had a eureka moment. I wrote in my notes: for once it’s not Senku that comes up with everything, but then I realized, it’s often not Senku. Senku is great about knowing how to get things done, but he actually goes off someone else’s idea just as often as he gets his own. It’s part of what I like about the character.

That’s real leadership. What I mean by that is a real leader creates an environment where everyone can achieve — where everyone feels confident and trusted. In that environment, anything can happen. I’ve only seen it a few times, but when it works, it works.

By evening, it’s finally time for Senku (and us) to find out what Gen thought of. And I have to admit, maybe I’m just a worse person than these two, but my mind had gone straight to LRADs or some other type of sonic weapons. I have read that they are in fact quite horrible.

Thankfully, both Senku and Gen have much better morals… kinda… Also, I should probably reexamine my life…

War is war. Like Paton said, you don’t win a war by dying for your country. You win a war by making the other poor soul die for his country. I was thinking along the same lines, though you got farther than I had. So you’re no worse than I was. That might not be at all comforting, though…

Honestly, even though it is horrible to force all this false hope on otherwise innocent enough people, I also thought the plan was awesome. I mean it’s easy to understand, I am completely convinced that it would work and I can see how they would realistically have the means to pull it off. This is an actual “super smart plan” in fiction that really is quite smart. And people are usually quite willing to believe lies they want to be true. 

Its appeal to their hopes is one of its strengths. And I gotta say that Senkuu and Gen’s willingness to go down in history as the goats defines them as real heroes. We’d be remiss in not mentioning how Chrome wasn’t about to let them bear the responsibility alone. 

Man, I missed these characters! It’s great seeing them in action again.

So the only thing left to do was to distract the lookout. And I guess they did kind of create a sonic weapon after all. Yay?

Yes, yay! Why? Because we got to see Homura Momiji again! So, yes, yay!

Maybe it’s because season 1 finished relatively recently, but I was sucked right back into the story. I enjoyed this episode, I want to see the next one. I have no complaints!

Me, either. The show’s off and running. I’m as excited to see what happens as Senkuu was to fire the first shots of the war!

4 thoughts

  1. Love reading your “Dr. Stone” reviews, they echo my own thoughts about the series in many ways.

    ( Stumbled across your blog awhile back, while seeking out other people’s impressions of the show. )

    So glad that I stuck with it, everything from the moment Kohaku first appears going forward is pure joy, as she notes towards the end of the Season Two premiere (… I’ll paraphrase) each invention builds upon the next: Those first few episode form a similar, necessary foundation – They’re a little bit of work to get through, but so much payoff, and even more payoff in the pipeline.

    We’re at a point now where the Kingdom of Science’s technological advances are coming fast and furious!

    The show reinvents itself as well – and surprises! – on an ongoing basis.

    Running a few episodes behind your reviews, as I’m watching the dub rather than the sub: Probably should circle back around and watch the sub as well at some point, but got quite comfortable with the dub cast during the show’s Toonami run.

    Back then, I’d accidentally spoiled the “Village Origins” arc for myself while it was airing ( Ouch! My bad! Of all the things to spoil! ) so have been trying very, very hard to avoid spoilers for the shows ever since.

    It’s not always easy.

    1. Completely agree. The very beginning had a few bumps (although I think it still had some great moments as well) but as soon as Senkuu got to the village it has been a wonderful show with very few bad moments!

      I’m glad fans are still enjoying it. This season is so exciting!

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