Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood - 2

Summary:
Ed and Al are on a train to Lior to see a man who can make miracles. They think it is probably slight of hand, but they check it out anyways in case it might be the philosopher stone. We flash back to Ed and Al's childhood where they begin to learn alchemy using their father's old books. However their mom soon suddenly dies from disease. The boys continue to practice alchemy under the tutelage of their teacher (later will be identified as Isumi) and slowly start their research into human alchemy.

One night they determine they know enough and attempt the forbidden alchemy. However soon afterwards things begin to go wrong. the alchemy circle grabs Ed's legs and suck Al into it. Left behind is a hideous creature who soon dies. It in inside this circle that Ed meets a creature and a door who call themselves god. The door opens and Ed is flung in. He begins to acquire all the knowledge in the universe, so much it nearly kills him. However when he approaches the area that would allow him human alchemy, he is pulled back out. The creature tells him that all that knowledge was enough for the trade, the trade of his leg. He returns to the real world and finds Al missing. Knowing he was taken he tries to attach Al's soul to a suit of armor. He losses his arm in the process.

The next day Roy Mustang and Hawkeye arrive in search of a powerful alchemist said to be in the area. However they only find the bloody remains of the fail alchemy. He goes to Winry's house where Ed and Al are healing and confronts them. He later offers Ed the chance to become a state alchemist. Doing so would mean that Ed would be a dog of the military, but it would open the immense possibility of research that could lead them to the philosopher stone, and the restoration of their bodies. Ed decides to take the offer and heads off to the state alchemist exam. While preparing, with a new arm and leg from Winry, he trains with Al and shows off his ability to use alchemy without a circle. Al, even though he also went through the gate, cannot. when he gets to the exam, he he attempts to show off by transmuting a spear with out a circle, and then attacking the fuhrer. However the fuhrer was able to slice Ed's weapon without anyone even noticing. regardless he passes and is granted the title of FullMetal Alchemist.

Reaction:

First of all, i'll take this opportunity to talk about the OP and ED. I have to say i don't particularly love the OP. It just sounds really rough for some reason and her voice seems to stammer. The overall beat/tune is pretty good though. The ED though is quite enjoyable and i love it. The animation at the end is also quite entertaining and even has a few laughs (Armstrong lol).

Onto the Episode...
Well, Not to bad. Obviously they went back on track and followed the storyline of Ed getting his arm and the failed transmutation of their mother, but it feels way too rushed. If their was one thing the first season did dead on, was hit the emotional note of how painful and just how hard Ed works to be where he is. Nothing about Ed's amazing studying ability was mentioned here and he seems to be driven by pure rage and pride more than determination. It's also sad to see Al's voice explaining equivalent exchange replaced by the narrator. Al really gave the saying a whole depth of meaning about how nothing is truly equal and someone always ends up paying more in the world which is lost when the narrator says it. I guess they want to try and make this closer to the original, yet different from the first season so that it wont be boring. Problem is the beginning of the first was close to the original. And i read somewhere the manga always tried to cut the intense emotion with jokes to lighten the manga anyways so its not too bad. Overall i don't think I'll be pretty impressed with this until they reach where the first season deviated. We'll have to see how they handle Lior because i felt the first season did a very good job. One of the scenes from the first season they can't do well now is the speech Ed makes to Rose about how a human is nothing more than a list of ingredients. (I thought that was a powerful statement about how his view of the world has changed to one of chemical parts. It was one of my favorite scenes.)

(I will be calling the source "manga" from now on and the first season "original" because I'm starting to get confused.)

1 comment:

Riven Uchiwa said...

It was really the same way in the Manga. they really didn't explain everything too well. Anyway I have no time until like end of june so recaps from me may be a little slow.

On to the important stuff, I still enjoyed this episode. I totally agree with Uso (the ED) beign amazing and the OP which is Again by YUI will grow on you. I really enjoyed this Ep like the last one. This has a little bit of a faster pace which I like better than the original which was more drawn out. I can't wait to see next episode!