Hello everyone! I’m a new writer. My name is Janette, and I will be doing anime reviews on this blog. My preferred pronouns are she/her. I am a lifelong anime fan as well as a lifelong writer! In my free time, I also enjoy cross-stitch, reading books, and playing video games. I am very excited to be joining the team here at Geeky Grind! I also am one of the cohosts of one of the new podcasts on the network, Talking Mons, so please check that out as well!
To start things off, I will be doing reviews of the new Dr. Stone episodes every Thursday. I very much enjoyed the first season and the first four episodes of the second season. That said, I will be picking up with episode 5. Without further ado, let us dive in. Warning, there be spoilers ahead!
The adventure resumes from where episode four left off. Senku and friends continue work on the steam engine automobile, hoping it will aid in a bloodless recovery of the captured Chrome. Since Gen is the only one who had a driver’s license in the pre-stone world, Senku decides Gen will test drive the vehicle. The roads have long since eroded away, and Gen can barely control the car. Senku, ever resourceful, puts the village to work making bamboo tires. Once done, the vehicle is ready to rumble! The creation is named the Steam Gorilla and fawned over by the village men.
Senku wants to use the automobile to transport the so-called “tools of science” to battle Tsukasa. Always a schemer with a heart of gold, he has a hidden motive. While he planned to take the whole village with him, the older villagers have mobility issues. Their joints ache, and their bones creak! This is something Senku had hoped to be sneaky about solving by having the older adults ride in the car, but the elderly villagers saw right through. The elderly population stays behind, believing in Senkus’s ability to stop Tsukasa before becoming a threat.
With the elders left behind, the rest of the Kingdom of Science heads toward Tsukasa’s camp. The traveling goes smoothly… up until they reach a hill. Since this is a car built in a matter of days out of wood, the vehicle doesn’t have the engine power to go up inclines. After a very exhausting group effort to push the vehicle uphill, Senku upgrades the car with improvised polymer armor, turning it into a tank.
While this is happening, Sukia decides to do some sleuthing to find exactly where in Tsukasas camp Chrome is held. Noticing her from his cell, he causes a distraction, alerting her to his location.
With the Steam Gorilla upgraded, Senku outlines his plan to use the tank to ram directly into Chromes holding cell and rescuing him in the chaos. However, Tsukasa is not to be underestimated and has anticipated Senku engineering a vehicle for this exact purpose. Chrome’s holding cell is surrounded by pit traps to shred the expected tank. Chrome realizes the trap set for his would-be rescuers and vows to think of a way to stop it.
My oh my. A lot happened in this episode! Too much, actually! Episode 5 covers a lot of ground very quickly, and as such, there’s not much time spent on any one plot point. There are so many glaring pacing issues. The emotional highpoint was supposed to be when the elders stay behind, but it was dead on arrival for me. The elders are so similarly animated and ugly to look at. Furthermore, I don’t even remember them being in the series up to this point! It wanted to be a solemn emotional moment, and while there are many in this series, this one doesn’t work.
This episode wasn’t bad per se. The production values were definitely there, and it wasn’t an awful watching experience. It just sped through everything so quickly. Things happened, and while they were things that needed to happen for the plot, they just weren’t interesting. There weren’t even any standout character moments to make up for the lack of exciting plot stuff.
That said, it’s clear that Season 2 has a lot of ground to cover, and I feel like I can forgive the imperfections of this episode. Episode 5 is a book-keeping/build-up episode to episode 6. I’m hoping they rushed through a bunch of low-key moments to focus on the better stuff in episode 6. I guess we will see if that’s the case.