Hey, if the professor could make a radio out of coconuts, then cell phones should be a cakewalk.
What They Say:
Episode #19: “To Modernity”
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Senku and Gen, with the help of the toughest villagers, managed to repeal Hyoga’s spear attack. Hyoga is mildly impressed, but then the village goes up in flames. With the huts burning and bridges torched, the island fortress island suddenly doesn’t seem so secure.
Hyoga and his associate, a pink-haired girl, watch as the villagers flee. They can’t make a direct attack against the armed village guards, but the goons wait and watch for their chance to take a hostage. While Senku and the others guard the science huts and put of fires that the pink-haired girl set, Suika decides to use herself as bait to lure them away. She heads for the volcano.
That’s when Senku suddenly has a bad feeling about the wind direction that day. The wind coming down from the mountain jogs his memory and he realizes that might bring the poison gas out of the crater. Grabbing their gas masks, Senku and Kohaku rush to rescue Suika. (While Suika remains perhaps one of the most competent characters we’ve met, Ginro is still a useless coward who just sits there while the science lab almost burns down.) Suika is grabbed in the nick of time as the gas flows down the hill.
Do you know how you can judge the character of a villain by how they treat their lackeys? Hyoga lets the goons die to test the duration of the poison. Senku plays into the idea that he laid a poison gas trap which sets an insane president. Hyoga and his accomplice are forced to return to Tsukasa.
With both Gen and Senku’s cover blown, Tsukasa finally learns that Senku is alive and is under the mistaken belief the village has advanced weaponry. Hyoga claims he will return to launch an attack with larger numbers. Tsukasa hasn’t been sitting idle of his high minded ideals. His village is primitive but well provided for as the folks he revived are hunter-gatherers. Sure, that simple lifestyle has some advantages, but the whole dying of injury or disease thing isn’t one of them. Tsukasa doesn’t seem to realize that his power structure isn’t all that different than the world he came from. The difference is he has power from might, not money.
Senku is now left with few options. If he wants his people to survive he’ll need to outwit Tsukasa’s warriors. He can’t make any more guns because he doesn’t have the chemicals needed. He could forge more swords but time is of the essence. So he takes a different approach entirely. Victory can be achieved through superior communication.
It’s time to make cell phones, except not. More likely two-way radios.
There’s a lot happening in this episode of Dr. Stone. Shadows of the worst elements of conflict and warfare as fire is brought to play and potential chemical warfare ensues. Tsukasa’s civilization is not completely filled with massive killers, and with the brute squad under Hyoga out of the picture Senku’s people are momentarily safe. The best defense is a good offense, and if they want to save themselves they need to strike swiftly or else they’ll lose the element of surprise.
Episode Grade: B
Streamed by: Crunchyroll, Funimation, Toonami!