5 comments on “Dr Stone’s Unconvincing Hero

  1. To me this is a case of the Hero doing the right thing for the wrong reasons and the villian doing the wrong things for the right reasons. Senku reminds me a bit of Prince Charming in Shrek… sure he saves the princess but something feels off about him. I have a genuine dislike for protagonists like these and it prevents me from really getting into the show. I find myself rooting for non and just hope the minor characters get their heads out of their buttsies and be like… maybe we should not start making weapons or bride people to follow us it did not go well in the past…

    • Though I initially rooted for Tsukasa, the more I watch Dr. Stone, the more I feel that, like you, I don’t really want to root for anybody… Though Senku’s goal isn’t evil, and will likely benefit the lives of the villagers (at least in the short term), I’m super uneasy with the way in which he’s going about it, treating the villagers like his unwitting pawns. And while I resonate with Tsukasa’s goal to allow the natural world to thrive and establish a new world order, the way that he’s appointed himself king over the stone world and given himself the authority to decide who is and isn’t fit to live in it smells sort of master-race-y…

  2. “Why is it that he wants to use science to propel mankind thousands of years through time to restore them to their former glory? For the thrill of it. And to flex his intellectual muscles. ”

    Interestingly, I find this to be more realistic than Shinra’s desire to be a hero. In the spirit of full disclosure, I love Shinra’s character. I accept that heroes often want to be heroic as a goal (finding out what happened to his mom and brother are part of that). But Senkuu pursuing a challenge for the thrill of achievement?

    That’s kinda what I do every day (though it’s my job).

    “Instead, he wants to give mankind a fresh start by reviving the young and the innocent only. ”

    I’m pretty sure the percentage of innocent-inclined people in any population — young, middle aged, or old — is about the same. Killing older people because of the actions of those standing on top of the artificially-enforced patriarchal pyramid is itself an evil, isn’t it? I’m over 50 so I get my stone self shattered because a bank executive decided to crash a planetary economy?

    I don’t think I’d want my stone self shattered over that!

    ” Why is Senku so desperate to return to a world with all of these problems? Because he wants to prove that he can? ”

    I just started reading How to Rebuild Civilization in the Aftermath of a Cataclysm. What’s interesting to me is that Senkuu is following the spirit of that book. One of its tenants is that the opportunity to restore civilization means we could skip the mistakes of the past. For example, no need to go through coal and oil; just start with renewables. Use more modern manufacturing techniques that are sustainable.

    In fact, the smaller population would require it to avoid contamination. Heavy metals are a pain to deal with, from a human development perspective.

    I don’t think Senkuu intends to throw himself into the invention of pollution. Look at his first generator: human powered.

    “but who hasn’t wondered just how better off the world would be if it wasn’t run by corrupt, self-serving, middle-aged, white men? ”

    It absolutely would be. Better off, I mean. But the tools those patriarchs used to control the population? They’re all gone. They won’t be able to assert their authority. To be fully evil, they’d have to become physically strong and enforce their will with brutality. That is, until they would re-establish an economy of scarcity and control access to the scarce resources.

    Kinda what Tsukasa is doing! All he did was replace “old white men” with a “younger white man.”

    “but that’s one of my absolute favourite things about anime, the way it gets you thinking, its potential to spark debate…”

    I’ve been trying to cut back on making comments, because I don’t know that my perspective is generally interesting or invites further conversation. But I do enjoy the thought-provoking aspects of anime, too, and this is a topic I’ve been thinking a lot about. In fact, it was Dr. Stone that reminded me I wanted to buy that book I mentioned earlier!

    Hardcopy version, of course. It seemed silly to buy the Kindle version!

  3. “who hasn’t wondered just how better off the world would be if it wasn’t run by corrupt, self-serving, middle-aged, white men”

    Who has wondered if whatever they’re replaced with wouldn’t turn out to be equally self-serving and corrupt? Evil, greed, and corruption isn’t limited to middle aged white men. Not by a long shot.

    “that’s one of my absolute favourite things about anime, the way it gets you thinking”

    Anime certainly can get one to think. It can also get one to enforce existing prejudices.

    Or, to put it another way, you object to the Kingdom of Science… but you seem to be OK with Tsukasa killing people who he deems unworthy and with what seems to be the growing brutality of his regime simply on the basis of his initial sweetness-and-light pitch.

    • Absolutely. Evil acts can be carried out by anybody, regardless of background. I guess finding out that my white, middle-aged bossman has been stealing wages from every single one of my colleagues and I has made me cynical!

      You may have missed it, but I said that I agree with Tsukasa’s motives (in the sense that I, too, wish that we could start again as a race, not repeating the mistakes of the past), but NOT its execution. Perhaps I could have worded it better, but I’m not giving the thumbs up to murder!

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