Posted by psgels on 23 May 2010 with categories: Full Metal Alchemist - Brotherhood



This episode was very straightforward and much of what you’d expect, but the scenario was as exciting as ever. Right now, you can see that the creators are building up to the climax of the series (yeah, there are only five more episodes left here). It’s the small touches that impressed me the most in this episode, though.

The random soldier who actually managed to shoot King Bradley, from Father’s true form that doesn’t in the slightest bit try to be aesthetically pleasing. It was a very intense episode, with deaths (we get to see the two deaths of the previous episode confirmed), death threats, Al who suddenly stopped waking up and the old man’s monologues as he tried to get Roy to perform a human transmutation were also very atmospheric.

There’s one thing I didn’t quite get though: why Roy of all people? I mean, couldn’t father just get himself a human sacrifice to attempt the transmutation? I mean, with the effort he put into creating the Bradley clones, he also could easily have educated one of them to use alchemy to the point of being able to transmutate a human being.

In any case, we’re about to get to the ending, and that does bring me to one particular gripe about Bones that I had at the time that this series started: its seeming inability to create good finales. Back then, I was getting very tired of how Bones series always tended to be full of potential, but rushed through all of their endings, leaving a bad aftertaste in the end and this happened to nearly all of their series. In the meantime however, this spell has been broken by Tokyo Magnitude, which closed off its story perfectly, so I’m very interested in whether the creators can pull things off, and most importantly: pace the remaining manga chapters properly across five episodes. I’m not asking for a panel-to-panel similarity; there have been enough shows which had to cope with a rushed ending due to lack of time (Armed Librarians, anyone). All I want is these final episodes to capture the essence of the series and what the manga author had in mind about the conclusion that she spent years building up to.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

19 Responses

  1. UnknownVoice says:

    Why Roy?

    Because Father needs those who survived seeing the gate.

    Its quite clear that there are a lotof other attempts, and no one would survive seeing the Truth.

    Roy has a great survivability rate, going by the knowledge,personality and goals he has.

    character traits play a big part in choosing the sacrifices.

  2. EB says:

    Like Unknown Voice said, most of those who open the gate don’t survive. It was stated earlier that Kimblee (a State Alchemist) didn’t have what it takes, and there’s some suggestion that Ed and Al survived mainly because they opened the gate together. That’s why the Homunculi put so much effort into observing sacrifice “candidates” like Roy and Marcoh, who are likely to survive the process.

  3. psgels psgels says:

    Hmm, but wouldn’t it be possible if pairs (or perhaps even groups) of people would open the gate together? It’s like you said: if a bunch of kids can do it, then why not a group of adults?

  4. Bruce says:

    Like I said in another thread, Ed and Al most likely just got lucky. Actually, Ed was probably the only one that got lucky, because Al’s essence was used up. The success rate is very low for human transmutation, and can only be guaranteed if one already went through the process and saw truth (as Al escaped the false truth) or if one is extremely skilled (Father, Hoenheim, Izumi, Mustang). If you notice, all of the human sacrifices other than Ed and Al are the most powerful characters after Father and are even stronger than Homunculi. Transmutation with unskilled alchemists is probably so inefficient that the state army would crumble from lack of manpower before any suitable candidates were created.

    The state alchemist program was made for the purpose of finding alchemists suitable for human sacrifice, and even then, Mustang was the only alchemist who became suitable.

    TL;DR: Ed and Al were lucky; probably the only survivors out of millions of other unskilled alchemists.

  5. Bruce says:

    Correction, Ed was the one that escaped the False truth from inside gluttony, not Al.

  6. Coyote says:

    The manga author is working with the studio so both the manga and anime final are the same. The manga ends next month if I’m right.

  7. Cornwiggle says:

    Father should have just used Marcoh when he had the chance and saved himself all the trouble.

    Though with how dead set Marcoh was against them; he probably wouldn’t have done it, even going to so far to die.

    Though, the town threat kept him there for all that time; they could have just used that to force him.

  8. p0p says:

    fuaCK ALL O F U

  9. Ransom says:

    Sacrifices are people with strong desires and/or convictions, I think that was explained at some point in the manga. After seeing the gate of thruth they are punished in accordance to those desires. So a mere bystander or someone payed to do so would not have been good.

  10. Bruce says:

    @Ransom: But the types of people that try to commit human transmutation often have the same motives as the Eldric brothers. It wouldn’t be difficult to find someone with strong convictions at all.

  11. lemon4life says:

    Wasn’t there that blind guy in the OVA that did human transmutation?

  12. Cornwiggle says:

    The Homunculi don’t keep tabs on everyone in the country. The blind guy doesn’t even leave the house; they don’t know about him. They didn’t even know about Izumi until Bradley found her.

  13. Ian says:

    They were out of options. Roy was, in the semi-truest sense, a last-minute decision.

  14. Bobby says:

    mustang was the best candidate because of his NATURE not necessarily his alchemy skills. remember he risked his life to intervene when hawkeye was attacked by gluttony (then lust) and wrath/bradley realized that to keep him in line all he needed to do was to put all of his subordinates in apparent danger from the military. they felt they could manipulate his somewhat irrational weakness for wanting to protect his people to use him to open the gate to save one when the time arose.

    pretty good ep btw. have to say though that i feel just like i did when he first encountered wrath/bradley that greed should have just gone to FULL ultimate shield. i mean look how much damage he did after he armored up! how does not using your strongest attack when fighting a guy who’s kicking your a$$ make any sense LOL?

  15. Kane says:

    Bobby: This has been bugging since episode 47. That was when he and the chimeras were fighting Pride and Gluttony in the dark, arguably a situation even more dangerous than facing off against Bradley.

    I understand that he had to let Ling take over to fight in the dark, but he could have armored up when the lights were still on and then Pride would not be able to do a thing to him.

    The manga doesn’t even address this issue. What the heck, really…

  16. MakeNoMistake says:

    In regards to why Ling didn’t go Ultimate in the past: Greed wants total control of Ling’s body. If Ling could access Greed’s power at will then Greed would have no leverage in their merger so Greed forces Ling to give up control/consciousness to use his power. As we’ve seen in recent episodes, homonculus are capable of emotions. Greed gave Ling full power because Greed knows what it’s like to lose comrades (at Bradley’s hands no less)

  17. Kamisurasan says:

    It seems to me that Greed doesn’t like being in full armor because it makes him look ugly. (explained in the fight with Ed during their first encounter). So that must be why?

  18. Reltair says:

    They should have really stopped that doctor from activating the circle. When they were fighting the “failures”, it didn’t really seem like they were trying to go for the doctor.

  19. Jamy says:

    It’s kinda hard to stop the doctor when ur getting ur a$$ kicked and the “failures” wouldn’t die plus kept attaking with swift moves…. They had their hands pretty full.

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  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Mar 2. 2015 01:29 AM)
    Late to this one but
    @BrendanVGC, that’s kinda tough. See there is a huge amount of very different manga that fall under the category “Seinien” You would kinda need to give us a more focused genre to work with here. Like horror, action etc.
    And pretty sure death note is shounen.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 07:35 AM)
    Damon I am more used to seeing in a drama or comedy role I reckon rather than an action hero.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 07:24 AM)
    Eric Bana is so underated =<
    I want to see more of the man on film.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 05:52 AM)
    The story would’ve been much more anchored and believable if the social imbalance wasn’t portrayed so heavy-handedly. It makes no sense for every house in Elysium to have a healing-bed that completely restores you and they dint bother to put a single one on Earth to keep the working class happy and healthy. I mean, c’mon now.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 05:49 AM)
    Yeah the action sequences were the best parts of Elysium. I don’t k ow, I just don’t feel Matt Damon in these roles anymore and I hope they stayed with Eric Bana like the rumors were hinting; that probably would’ve made it a more personal story.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 04:55 AM)
    Its been too long since I saw district 9 to have an accurate opinion on it.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 04:54 AM)
    I can remember giving higher points to elysium when I saw it first because I really needed/wanted to see an R rated action movie. But apart from Sharlto Copley as the villain it was in hindsight fairly miscast, the ending was quite poor and the script could have been improved on, I liked the robots/action scenes however.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 04:20 AM)
    I have a feeling that the movie’s gonna suck tho. District 9 was good, Elysium was a mess and Chappie looks like a Short Circuit ripoff with nothing new to add. I have respect for Blomkamp since he started as an animator and probably has respect for the medium and a good eye for aesthetics, by he’s doing progressively more conventional stuff as his career goes on.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 01:41 AM)
    Ha, so I wasn’t wrong when I came across that film Chappie and thinking that the robot resembled Briareos from appleseed, the director’s a fan of Masume Shirow’s work apparently.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 12:16 AM)
    @Brendan: That completely hinges on your personal taste, but Vagabond is one of the best Chanbara ones around, with superb art, fast pacing and entertaining storyline. Berserk should go without saying as it’s a codifier for many Seinen conventions, but Vinland Saga is another great series which is in similar vein. Biomega and Drifters are also worth a look.

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