By Dakota Wiegand
Hey all! So after is did Full Metal Alchemist, I had a lot of you guys requesting me to do Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood saying it was much better than the original series and stuff. I’m going to be honest, it took me a while to get to watching it because I thought there wasn’t going to be that much of a difference between the two series, or its just the same characters with a completely different story. Well, it was similar to the first series for sure, but I have to admit, this series was a lot better to get through. Let’s take a look!
FMAB premiered in Japan in April of 2009 and ran until July of 2010, for a total of 64 episodes. In February of 2010, Funimation released the English dubbed version of the show to Cartoon Network’s “Adult Swim.” When it was initially released to TV, the reception wasn’t exactly a warm one. A lot of fans and critics were not impressed that the story line was very similar to the first series. However, after the series differentiated itself from the first, fans and critics both agreed that this series was the superior one.
Like the first, the show setting is based in a slightly futuristic early 1900’s Germany. However, it is the country known as Amestris, a Germanic country with a very diverse terrain and inhabitants. That being said, the country is a military state, where there is a heavy military presence throughout the country, which leaves it wide open for the show’s characters to travel about and get into situations where they may not necessarily have gotten into if they weren’t apart of the military.
Speaking of the characters, they are the same characters from the last series: Edward and Alfonse Elrick, Col. Mustang, Hawkeye, Winry, Scar, and also a whole new slew of characters that can be too numerous to name, but the one that had more to do with the plot, Ling Yao.
I won’t spend too much time talking about them this time around, because the characters are exactly the same. However, Winry was given a bigger part to the series instead of that awkward love interest the Ed had in the first series that didn’t go anywhere. In this series, she actually has character and both her and Ed build a relationship together. Ling Yao I don’t remember from the first series, but he is a fun character. He is from the neighboring country, Xing, which practices alchestory, which is a more medical application of alchemy. He is one of many sons of the king of Xing, who is looking for immortality for his father. On this search he learns about the philosopher’s stone and the homunculi. With the opportunity presenting itself, he welcomes the homunculi Greed to enter his body, which leads to a very good plot line where Greed and Ling take turns at controlling, who is controlling Ling’s body. They actually develop a friendship, which makes the death of Greed actually very sad.
As far as the animation in this series, it is slightly different. They take out a good chunk of the silliness and replaced it with better visuals. Though, its honestly splitting hairs on this.
The story is where the two series differentiate themselves. Brotherhood has less filler episodes than the original series did, but they still refer to some filler episodes from the first series in this show. The main plot is what drives every episode and it is a lot simpler to follow than what it was in the original. The twists they had were not predictable for someone who has never read the comics, and was very entertaining. A lot of the time I was wondering to myself, “how are they going to get out of this one?” Another thing is that a lot of the characters are in the story for a reason and not just there as a plot device or anything. They contribute to the story and are usually very likable. This is also the first show that made my skin crawl the most; it usually had to deal with Gluttony. The show also surprised me the most when I had the need to continue to watch it and made me want to click Next Episode. Kudos Brotherhood, kudos.
I know my review of Fullmetal Alchemist was a little harsh and I was using it as a platform to list what was wrong with mainstream anime. Despite the voice of Ed, which I still think is wrong for the character, the rest of the show corrects most of the mistakes that most mainstream anime have. It had a definitive ending that didn’t drag out that much (the last 10 episodes could have ended sooner, though). The character pool wasn’t gigantic and all the characters had a purpose. Overall, it was an anime that I would like to watch again and definitely would use to sell someone on the genre. So what does that mean? I strongly recommend this show to anyone who wants to binge watch something
Show Rating: A
Watch/Read what I was talking about!
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