Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood continues onwards, now featuring never-before adapted Manga storylines! People from a country called Xing, murder investigations and more await within! (or by clicking the “read more” button, if you like…)
Fullmetal Alchemist was a manga created by Hiromu Arakawa, originally released between August 2001 and June 2010. This anime adaptation is following on an earlier attempt at an anime adaptation that was flawed due to having to diverge from the manga storyline halfway through. These six episodes, titled “Beasts of Dublith”, “Those Who Lurk Underground”, “Envoy From the East”, “Footsteps of a Comrade-in-Arms”, “Cold Flame” and “The Arrogant Palm of a Small Human”, respectively, aired between June 28th and August 2nd 2009.
The first two episodes deal with Ed, Al and their old teacher Izumi getting caught up with an underground group of villains headed up by Greed, who reveals that he is a homunculus, someone created by alchemy, and the foes they’ve been tracking are also the same way…
The next four feature people arriving for Xing, including young prince Ling, and Mustang’s hunt for Maes Hughes’ killer leads to a loyal friend being framed for the murder, and the Elric brothers and Winry find out what happened to their Hughes in their absence.
Note: Full Spoilers From Here On Out!
“Your name is Greed? … I think I trust you…”
The introduction of Ling and his two guards, as well as cute little Xingese girl May Chang, are welcome additions to an already great cast of characters. Greed is a great villain and his fight with both the Elrics and Fuhrer Bradley are really fun to watch… it’s a shame he doesn’t hang around more often.
On that note, I don’t think I’ve mentioned Bradley, or Wrath as he’s known. He’s a fun villain to follow, cold and calculated, unlike his fellow homunculi like Gluttony, Lust and Envy, who, while are fun to watch, are pretty standard character archetypes.
Xingese characters arrive in style.
The storyline involving Armstrong’s soldier being framed for Hughes’ murder and eventually Mustang faking her death and stashing her away in Xing is a good story to watch, especially when the Elrics get involved. It does a good job of pointing the finger as Mustang being too cold-hearted for his own good, then does a good job of showing his intelligence instead.
It leads to a showdown with a crazy creature inhabiting Barry the Chopper’s human body and sees Mustang and his trusty subordinate (who is clearly more than that…) Hawkeye having a rather humorous fake radio conversation.
“I’ve had worse.”
I don’t know if it was necessary to dwell on Hughes’ death so much… When Ed, Al and Winry find out, it spends a whole rather depressing episode on their reactions, and includes a heart-breaking visit to Hughes’ widow and daughter. It had to be done, but it could have been wrapped up a little quicker in my eyes.
Adding that Scar was the one who killed Winry’s parents during the Ishavalan war was a bit of a coincidence, but I’ll let it off, mostly as it does set up a great scene later on…
Now THAT’S how you make an entrance!
Another strong batch of episodes. The whole fight with Greed and his cronies is great, as is the story involving Mustang and his men not being fooled by the frame job. It also leads into one of my favourite episodes, but you’ll have to wait until next time for that bit!