Anime Review Dr. Stone Series

Anime Hajime Review: Dr. Stone – Stone Wars


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Original Run: January 14, 2021 - March 25, 2021
Number of Episodes: 11
Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Science Fiction
Based on the Series Created By: Riichiro Inagaki and
Boichi

***Warning, the following may contain spoilers for Dr. Stone – Stone Wars. Reader discretion is advised.***

Series Synopsis

Having been revived thousands of years after all humanity was turned to stone, Senku Ishigami (voiced by Yuusuke Kobayashi) has vowed to bring civilization back through the power of science.

Although this task appeared daunting, Senku is the right man for the job. In less than a year, he manages to bring back into existence technologies long thought lost. However, not everyone wishes for Senku to return society to what it was.

Senku and his Kingdom of Science are on the brink of war. The outcome of this battle will determine who will rule this stone world – brains or brawns.

Series Positives

I was a little worried when starting Dr. Stone – Stone Wars (Stone Wars) to tell you the truth. Since the first season was over twice as long as this installment, it got me wondering what this show’s priorities were. Was this going to be a proper continuation to one of the best anime from 2019 (Anime Hajime ranked it fourth of the year)? Or, would there be a rush to conclude the story as fast as possible?

Having never read the Dr. Stone manga, I can’t speak to if Stone Wars was a proper adaptation or a hurried one. I can only comment on what I saw, and what I saw was a story with no indication it’s going to end any time soon. This show has a lot more power left in it, and I am excited to see what comes next.

Stone Wars was an outstanding follow-up to one of the most fun, exciting, and entertaining anime in recent years.

If you enjoyed the first season, there is no reason to think you would have a problem with its sequel. Much of what made the original so memorable returned and was expanded upon in Stone Wars.

Along with being the fourth-ranked anime of 2019, Anime Hajime awarded Dr. Stone: 3rd Best Opening Song, 4th Best Animation, and 2nd Best Character (Senku Ishigami). On all counts (even the opening song), Stone Wars delivered. But of those that ultimately matter (story and characters), this continuation was a resounding success.

At the time of this review’s posting (April 2021), there is still a long time to go before the 2021 Anime Hajime Highlights. Therefore, I don’t want to go predicting what awards – if any – this season will take home. Still, it wouldn’t be a stretch to say Stone Wars has established itself as a definite contender.

On the character front, this installment reaffirmed Senku Ishigami’s standing as a phenomenal protagonist. To list some of his more prominent qualities, he is:

  • Highly intelligent
  • Extremely confident
  • Incredibly stubborn
  • And a touch maniacal

I can’t tell you how often those same personality traits have described characters who are downright asshats. To accompany each point respectively, these types of characters are also:

  • Snobbish
  • Full of themselves
  • Dangerously uncompromising
  • Occasional – if not overtly – sadistic

Fortunately, Senku has proven to be none of those.

Unlike other highly intelligent characters, Senku has demonstrated down-to-earth common sense and compassion. He has used his brains and love of science to pursue practical purposes; his goal has been to save humanity rather than conduct research.

Senku has also been shown to have weaknesses. Like, literally, he is weak as s@#$; a strong breeze has enough power to knock him down.

There was a fantastically funny moment in Stone Wars when Senku managed to “pin” down an opponent. The shock and suddenness of the encounter brought the person down, but once they realized Senku weighed less than nothing, they just stood up and were free.

Aside from his usage of science, it’s been Senku’s treatment of his friends that has made him worth remembering.

It would have been easy for Senku to consider and treat the people of the stone world as mere simpletons. Although their technology was primitive, their minds and reasoning skills were anything but. In particular, Chrome (voiced by Gen Satou) was every bit a scientist as Senku was. Granted, Chrome was loud, reckless, and impulsive, but he was also quite clever and quick on his feet. In a way, he became a secret weapon for Senku’s Kingdom of Science. With everyone focusing on Senku, Chrome was free to move unseen.

People who underestimate Chrome paid for their lapse in judgment dearly.

As for Stone Wars’ story, I liked the constraint this series placed on itself. It gave tension to an otherwise lopsided battle.

If Senku only cared about winning, he could have destroyed his enemies with little effort. However, Senku being Senku, he wouldn’t allow himself to hurt anyone. Victory came, not through overpowering the foe, but by doing so without killing.

This meant any plan Senku and his allies thought up had to be extra precise. If there was one wrong move, one miscalculation, one hiccup of hesitation, someone was going to get hurt. It also didn’t help that the people Senku and the Kingdom of Science faced had no such restriction.

There was never any doubt that in a prolonged conflict, Senku would come out on top. Unfortunately, he didn’t have that kind of time.

To wrap this section up, Stone Wars effectively laid the groundwork for more story. The biggest question of the series is still unanswered. Where we will go from here, I can only guess.

Part of me is a little disappointed this season wasn’t as long as the last. Hell, Stone Wars was shorter with eleven episodes than the typical anime season (twelve to thirteen episodes).

Still, at the end of the day, I will always prefer quality over quantity. And quality was precisely what Stone Wars was.

Series Negatives

When Stone Wars got going, it went the distance. This season was nothing short of thrilling when at its peak, and its finale will leave you wanting more.

Getting to that point, though, took some effort.

I can’t pretend Stone Wars rocketed out of the gate. Instead, the story took a while to really get revved up and moving. The prep side of science, although interesting, was given too much focus. I think it was clever that Senku prioritized the details, like the feeding Kingdom of Science’s army. Most shows only give credence to firepower and spend not a second covering the logistics of mounting an invasion.

However, stone age freeze-drying technics are only so interesting.

Also, I don’t know how it didn’t bother me last season, but it sure as hell did here.

Senku’s catchphrases got a bit out of control. If I have to hear there is a ten billion percent chance of something happening or an answer is not even a millimeter correct on more time, I might scream. Saying these once an episode is fine. But every other freaking scene, give me a break.

Luckily, these gripes of mine are only nitpicks. They didn’t subtract from my enjoyment of this series.

Final Thoughts

It always makes me happy when we get a good sequel. And this was an excellent sequel.

This season had the same great animation, the same outstanding music, and the same phenomenal characters. We were graced with a stratifying continuation of a genuinely remarkable anime.

Here’s hoping season three comes much, much soon rather than later.

Dr. Stone – Stone Wars has earned a recommendation.

But these were just my thoughts. What are yours? Have you seen this series? How would you advise Dr. Stone – Stone Wars? Leave a comment down below because I would love to hear what you have to say.

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For Anime Hajime, I’m LofZOdyssey, and I’ll see you next time.


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