Posted by psgels on 4 July 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews, Full Metal Alchemist - Brotherhood




Because the first season of Full Metal Alchemist went with its own story, it turned out to be one of the most famous anime of the decade, and the manga was finally about to finish, it maybe wasn’t much of a surprise that Bones ended up animating the story of the manga. And they really made sure to give it a top notch treatment here!

Especially in the past few years, the trend has grown in which series should consider themselves lucky if they can get 26 episodes, or even enough time to animate the entire story on which they’re based. Full Metal Alchemist is different, however: with 64 episodes, it received just the right length in order to tell the full story of the Full Metal Alchemist manga, and boy is it an awesome one!

The story here is completely different from the first season, but I ended up liking it a lot better with the different focus. It’s still focused on a ton of action-scenes, but the story around it is deep, well fleshed out and mature, especially for a series with many shounen elements. The world that the series is set in is well fleshed out, multi-layered and quite detailed.

Another huge focus of this series is the time it spent on characters preparing. With the epic nature of this series, a lot of time is actually spent on the lead characters, finding allies to help them. The cast of this series is huge, but everyone in this series has his or her own part to play in the large scheme of things. The length also allows the creators to really look at all of them and their motivations, backgrounds and purposes, in order to make all of them unique, with excellent results.

What you get is an epic action series with plenty of depth to come by, carefully paced and wrapped up in the end with a finale that’s full of adrenaline. However, you should note that the first fifteen episodes or so follow pretty much the same story as the first Full Metal Alchemist TV-series, and it’s clear that at that point, the creators try to get through these parts as fast as possible in order to get to the new material, compared to the very slowly paced first season.

It of course depends on how keen you’re into seeing the same things again, but there are some notable differences between the two. Brotherhood cuts some of the useless fluff of the first season away, like the moments that were just there to show contrived situations for the lead character to save the day, though it also cuts away a lot of the minor character-building scenes. Don’t worry though, because after 16 episodes, the series continues with a completely different story that in my eyes completely surpasses the original Full Metal Alchemist.

It’s a definite recommendation if you’re looking for something epic. Despite being 64 episodes, Bones keep a surprisingly good animation quality throughout the series, especially the action-scenes themselves look gorgeous for such a long series. The soundtrack also fully captures the grant atmosphere of the story, and will make sure for a show that will keep you entertained.

We here have a series that really made excellent use of its opportunity to finally show an epic story that goes beyond even 52 episodes, while always keeping on track and not losing itself somewhere in the middle. The creators had a really excellent manga to base themselves on, and even though they did not keep to the manga for 100%, the way they brought it to animation still deserves to be applauded.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Well paced and varied in the long run, exciting and engaging in the short run.
Characters: 9/10 – A ton of different characters, most of them get their chance to show off themselves and get some depth. Plenty of character-development as well.
Production-Values: 9/10 – Great animation from Bones, plus an excellent soundtrack.
Setting: 10/10 – Excellent in its depth and multiple layers, focusing both on the big picture as the individual details. Successfully brings many different stories together.

Suggestions:
Bounen no Xamdou
– Vision of Escaflowne
Nadia – The Secret of Blue Water

42 Responses

  1. Watcherzero says:

    Maybe im the odd one out then of prefering the original, now the series are identical for the first 25% or so (though second series covered events faster) but I though the anime writers did great work at guessing what direction the manga would take, and you have to admit they guessed a lot of what would happen correctly.

  2. Bruce says:

    I still have to finish this; still on episode 58.

    I thought the first series had much better drama, but not nearly as good of a plot (and that movie was just a dumb attempt to make money).

  3. Kim says:

    Fullmetal Alchemist is a very special series to me. It’s a series I followed for about 6 years and it’s probably the only long time series I have followed that has not let me down once. Brotherhood did not exactly live up to the manga for me (but with how I feel about the manga that was probably an impossible task). Still I am glad Brotherhood was created for people who don’t read manga who could discover this series as well.

    @ Watcherzero the first anime team did not guess. Arakawa told them her ending from the beginning and asked them that they make a different ending from hers. I am guessing they just kept some similar plot points. Still the themes and the way the characters developed are quite different in the two series and that is why I will always prefer the manga/Brotherhood. For me the manga was always about hope and pushing forward despite what happened in the past. It was also very much about the human spirit. That humanity might be weak but we don’t give up and we rely on others that is our strength.

  4. JBM says:

    Both the first and the second series had their good and weak points. The drama is much more emotional and heart wrenching in the first series but everything as a whole was more cohesive in the second series. And just like what psgels has pointed out, the series was very good at producing a stunning climax after a good amount of build up unlike the first series which IMO fell flat in the end after what I believed was still an amazing build up and the follow up movie just made it worse. Anyway, it was one hell of an amazing series. The comparisons will now come in threes: the first series, the second series and the manga. It all ends up with a matter of taste. I prefer the second series and in some aspects and chapters, I prefer the anime version over the manga counterpart. But all in all, the FMA franchise is amazing.

  5. Patrick says:

    As JBM pointed the first series (should not be called 1st season) was MUCH more “emotionally engaging”, and for me that’s what made FMA, at least for me. In the second series I watched 15 ep or so and found I felt nothing so I dropped it.

  6. Denizen says:

    The first series was not “emotionally engaging” in so much as it was just melodramatic, forcing soapy drama in places it didn’t even need to happen. Here’s a flashback, this is serious, omg how sad, etc.

    The second series was dramatic too, but it usually applied it in more striking and upbeat ways – for example, my absolute favourite scene in Episode 19, where Mustang kills Lust, was done in a way to make it as impressive and simply badass as possible. No depth, no heartbreaking last wishes, just an awesome climax.

    The first series probably would have tried to make it into some emotionally charged scene about “Lust’s last regrets” or something like that, when it just didn’t fit.
    FMA was always intended to be a homage of sorts to B-Movies, so it always had cheese to balance the more serious storytelling – the first series didn’t have this, so by using Arakawa’s setting it always ended up not quite working. The new series just worked much better.

    Also, wtf, dropping a series just after its started going in its own direction? That’s so dumb.

  7. Patrick says:

    Denizen It’s your opinion and I respect it (not your way of doing it) but I feel otherwise. I just felt nothing watching second series I don’t know how to explain it better.

  8. kagura says:

    @Patrick
    Have you actually read the whole review? ‘Cause psgels states pretty clearly that the first fifteen episodes cover the same material as the half of the first anime did, and that the creators probably wanted to get through those episodes as fast as possible, in order to get to the real meat of the story. So yeah, no wonder that the emotional impact of the first anime would be lost (although I agree with Denizen that it was too melodramatic for its own good). I think you should give Brotherhood a second chance before passing such a definite judgement.

    And psgels, this is really an excellent review, so all I can say is “thank you” :)

  9. Hana says:

    @ Patrick: You shouldn’t have dropped it after 15 episodes. That’s when it started to actually get good.

  10. jimao says:

    bunch of guys beating up a boss who wants to take over the world, and with no sacrifices on the good guys’ side (hell even mustang’s eyes were healed)…

    I understand everyone has different taste but this is ridiculous that no one here is standing up for FMA-2003.

  11. jimao says:

    @patrick: good decision. Brotherhood starts off as shounen, and quickly degerenates into even more shounenish cheese. I defy anyone to tell me the difference between brotherhood and yuyu hakusho, if there is any.

  12. MarieLuise says:

    The 1st series was a mess and full of plot holes but there was something incredible touching and intriguing about it. I felt so much for the characters. I remember Ed dying at the end, it was heart breaking. Even though I never really enjoyed the additional movie, there was bitterness in it which I really liked. It made me think, guess what it was all about. Maybe I just had this feeling BECAUSE the whole story Bones came up with made no sense, but it was extremly exciting to watch.

    And FMA Brotherhood? The story is much better – no doubt about that. And Bones did a better job I ever expected. But seriously: what should we learn at the end? What was it all about? I especially think about Ed fighting with father after Al went to the gate to give Ed back his arm. There was so much hatred in this scene (Ed extremly angry, the soldiers started to cry out loud: destroy him! Destroy him!), so again: what was it all about? David fighting against Goliath, killing him and dancing over his head? I know Arakawa put a lot of thouhgts in her story (Panteism etc.), but yeah.. in the end it was just about fighting, killing, winning, standing up and so on. It felt emotionally empty for me. Not to mention that I found it hard to understand and feel sympaty for characters like Mustang and Hawkeye. How many people did they kill in Ishbal? You can argue that was one of the good (and mature) points of the story (no black-white characters), but for me the whole series was full of strange morals. Not to mention that I got the impression Arakawa glorified the army the way she was portraying Olivier and her soldiers. Yeah, and Mustangs goal always was to became Führer (When I hear this word I always think about Hitler. He was the “Führer”). Why don’t decinde for a democracy and not a country leaded by the army? Well, maybe I’m just missing here something great. And maybe all of this was discussed before. In that case I appologize for my pointless post ;-)

  13. kaei says:

    @jimao: If you need someone to tell you the difference between Yuyu Hakusho and FMA, even if someone does tell you you probably won’t be able to grasp it. But whatever, I’ll give it a shot. For one thing, Yuyu Hakusho is a long running generic shounen manga with a never-ending list of enemies that degenerates quickly into a tournament style slugfest and fight of the week. FMA has a beginning, climax and end, and each fight had purpose and the author didn’t introduce new enemy after new enemy and infinite power-ups. FMA treated its female characters with respect; YYH’s females were just window dressing.

    Also, some sacrifices on the good guy’s side – Hohenheim, namely – doesn’t even get to see his grandchildren even though he finally wants to live. This is manga-only, but Havoc doesn’t get magically healed by the Philosopher’s stone – there is a picture of him undergoing physical therapy. Ed never gets his leg back. Good friends who died during the final fight stay dead. Hughes stays dead. Nina stays dead. Trisha stays dead. All the people killed in the making of Philosopher’s stones stay dead. Winry’s parents stay dead. These people have ALL sacrificed a lot, and the ending is about them picking themselves up and moving on and walking on their own two feet.

    OR did you want the ending to be a dismal hopeless slaughterfest with all the leads dead and the ones remaining crying before you consider it a good story?

  14. kaei says:

    @MarieLuise: You bring up good points on how you think the ending could have been better, eg. the democracy, decreasing the importance of the army, etc. but the only thing I can say is if you want that kind of story where those things happen, you’ll have to look elsewhere (and I agree with you that Mustang and Hawkeye et al. have committed war crimes, the army has too much importance etc.) Those things that you think should go, other people might appreciate them, and if the author changed it, it wouldn’t be Fullmetal Alchemist anymore.

    You may think you missed “something great” but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that – some stories just resonate better with some people than others =)

  15. Kim says:

    I am sorry but if the only thing that you can get out of the story is let’s kill the bad guys then you have serious comprehension issues. But I get it only things that end with angst, sacrifice, and suffering are deep. Don’t make me laugh.

    The brothers sacrificing themselves in the first series was not deep at all. It showed they learned absolutely NOTHING. What was the whole thing during the first Scar fight when Al told Ed not to waste his life. To live if you have a chance and maybe find a way to save poor girls like Nina.

    The characters in Brotherhood actually do something POSITIVE with their lives in the end. From Ed and Al traveling the world to thank all the people that helped them, to Al and Ed doing research to help people who were hurt by alchemy, to Roy working to overhaul the Ishval policy, to Scar trying to help the Ishval people not lose their culture. The manga is full of positive messages and hope about the future.

    And when Ed gave up alchemy (and didn’t sacrifice his life) he showed that he understands it is okay to not rely on this special power. He is okay with being a normal human being and relying on his friends (it was his reliance on his friends not alchemy that helped him win in the first place). This shows that Ed in Brotherhood actually developed and learned something through his experiences. This was the opposite of Father who wanted to be above everyone. Father’s arrogance is what caused him to lose.

  16. Kim says:

    Also yes Roy being healed by the Philosopher Stone might seem easy but in a sense it was the Ishvalans that were given him a second chance and he is using that chance to change the policy on Ishval.

    What do I mean the stone Marcoh gave him was made up of Ishvalans. The stone was then used by Kimbley to kill Ishvalans. The stone eventually falls into Al’s hands and he uses this to defeat Kimbley, and now Marcoh gives it to Roy (who also participated in the Ishval massacre) to change the Ishval policy. Thus the whole thing comes full circle.

    Also the Amestris world might eventually become a Democracy but that will take time.

  17. Meep says:

    Very well said, Kim~

  18. MarieLuise says:

    @kaei: thank you for your nice post :-)

    @kim: It seems it really is all about different tastes. You didn’t tell me something I didn’t know before and of course my opinion about the ending of the series didn’t change. I don’t need a sappy ending with lots of pointless drama to appreciate a story, but I do like some bitterness. I do like brothers who maybe don’t learn that much and maybe don’t get all of their goals (because I think that’s more “real” than such a overall happy ending). But at the same time I’m well aware that Arakawa always had such an happy ending in her mind, it is/was her way of storyteling. And if you like the whole story you have to like the ending too. I really think so, but I just fail on that.

    I will say it again: the end of FMA brotherhood was all about fighting, killing etc. You can use nicer words and say it was about getting your goals, fighting for your future, for the people you love, for friendship etc. I just felt the urge to kill and win at the end of the series and a toooo long battle with no real emotions in it (the scenes with Greed were ridiclous and incredible cheezy). And when Ed was calling Hohenheim “father” – I just knew he would do that, because I have seen such moments hundred million times before in movies, books etc.

    What you said about Roy and the stone: I don’t want to add something to that. It is a good example for the “strange morals” I talked about. It has to do with forgivness and getting the chance to do some good things (which was also a major theme of the series regarding the Ishbal massacre) but it made a strange aftertase in my mouth ;-)

    But don’t get me wrong. FMA is in my top 5 of favorite anime. And I was back then the first one who tried to convince psgels to blog this series.

    @psgels: I enjoyed your blogging about FMA very much. Thank you for that :-)

  19. Kim says:

    @Marie Luise,

    Although I don’t agree with everything you said my comment was not directed at you (well maybe the 2nd one about Roy but not the first one).

    This is an action/adventure series so yes there are fights. However people seem to forget there were fights in the first series too. If I recall in the final episode (or 2nd to last episode) it was Envy VS Ed. There were plenty of fights in the movie too. But there is still plenty of symbolism and message beyond the fights. And as for the fights I enjoyed the fact that EVERYONE was fighting together from the children to adults. That is something you don’t see in most stories.

    As for not getting what you want and not learning anything being more “real” no I don’t agree with that. It might be true in some cases but it certainly doesn’t have to be true. In fact that it is a very negative outlook on life.

    It’s also fine to enjoy a more bitter story. I usually prefer bitter sweet endings myself. I am just making a point that an ending does not have to be bitter to have depth.

  20. Ebod says:

    I never read/watched FMA for its DEEP SYMBOLIC MEANING, because while it had some, that really wasn’t its aim.

    FMA manga and brotherhood = awesome entertainment with good plot, amazing characters, and humor.

    FMA first anime = wangst wangst wangst plus even more. Not only was it a mood whiplash from the first half of the series following the manga, the ending, exactly as Kim said, showed that Ed and Al both learned NOTHING. Not having a happy ending =/= automatically equal AMAZING DEPTH. Each to their own, but I prefer it when my characters do a little more than just stand in the rain moping about their life. Also, Al had almost no personality left by the end of the first FMA anime.

  21. Deschain says:

    I have been following this blog since the first episode of Brotherhood (and since I never read the manga), I waited to throw in my two cents until it was over . This series was excellent plot driven series, but the first one was an excellent character driven story. I prefer character driven stories over plot ones, although I can enjoy both

    The first FMA did have an aim and it told it well. The first series was all about Alchemy and the process of how it works. Alchemy is a huge part of their world and everyone could use it with the proper training, it is an intricate part of their world. While Ed and Al believed alchemy could be used for good, positive goals, they quickly realized that the world doesn’t see it that way. The Homunculus were a clear example of the negative aspect of Alchemy. Pride, Lust, Envy, Greed, Sloth, Wrath, Gluttony weren’t just characters, there were themes, sins that were present all throughout the anime. Seeing the Elric brothers confront these things and holding on to their beliefs shows resolve, not an inability to learn. To me the first series reflects our world as much as the one of Amestris and the goals of both the heroes and the villains, felt like something we all can relate to. To me they are both different animes. We already had the one that focused on the philosophy and their world. This one was sorely needed, especially for someone like me in order to get a full perspective on the FMA universe.

  22. Charred Knight says:

    @Jimao I defy you to tell me the difference between the first Fullmetal Alchemist and a funeral. Mizushima confused characters crying, talking about how depressing your life is, and characters dying useless deaths for actual drama. He completely misunderstood what the series was about. Also is comparing something to Yuu Yuu Hakusho supposed to be an insult? Once you grow up maybe we can debate some anime instead of hearing about how angst = art.

  23. Deschain says:

    This is the kind of crap I hate from people. Simplifying an anime like FMA and FMA Brotherhood is the pure sign of stupidity. FMA Brotherhood is not like Yu Yu Hakusho. Does it share the same aspects? Sure, but a lot if not all anime share certain traits that adhere to formula. That is just one side to FMA Brotherhood not the whole.

    As for the Mizushima statement. Wow, this person looked at the manga and noticed a principle, a law of equivalency and crafted a story that stimulates emotion and thought. If you didn’t catch that then that’s sad. And FMA was not angst in the way you are describing it. FMA was about seeing the world for what it truly was, a place filled with individuals who posses the knowledge and ability to help others and instead use it to further their own agendas. Having you principles and beliefs questioned and challenged is an intense experience. If you failed to see that aspect then fine that’s you, but don’t simplify it to angst alone. He wasn’t trying to follow the same kind feeling in the manga, he focused on a human story and it was good

  24. Kim says:

    @ Deschain

    When I said I felt Ed and Al didn’t learn anything in the first series I was talking specifically about the scene when they both sacrificed themselves for each other. This scene was a disappointment for me. And in general the development of Ed and Al was a disappointment for me. However I can’t say they learned absolutely nothing in the course of the series. I believe they learned the world is not perfect, bad things can be done with alchemy, and you can’t get everything you want in the end. I am not too fond of the themes in the first series but these themes were presented well.

    However Ed and Al in Brotherhood and the manga stuck to their beliefs too: To not use others in their quest to get their bodies back (this is why Ed refused to use Hohenheim’s last soul or the P.Stone but instead came up with his own way to get Al back). So you see Ed and Al not only hold on to their beliefs in the manga storyline but also succeed because of what they learned through their experiences (that they did not succeed by alchemy but through the help of others).

    Learning something and sticking to your beliefs is not mutually exclusive.

  25. Deschain says:

    @Kim
    So basically what you are saying is that the ending was bad. I can see how that can happen, but sacrificing themselves and not using others was presented in the first series as well. Ed didn’t use the prisoners to transmute them into a philosopher’s stone. When Al realized that Wrath had Ed’s limbs he was going to “rip” them off, but he refrained from that. When Al became a Philosopher’s Stone, Ed refused to use his powers out of fear it may destroy Al; which is the exact same thing with Hohenheim wanting to use his life for Al in Brotherhood. Granted I do like Brotherhood’s solution better, but in the first series, Ed realized that he can’t have it all. Saving his brother’s life and restoring his body was much more important than receiving his limbs. Once again that was demonstrated in Brotherhood when Al sacrificed himself. So in general both shows exhibited the same ideas, but they both stuck to their own themes. In the end of the first series it wasn’t about simply restoring a limb or a body, it was to restore life. A life for a life is equivalent exchange which was the whole theme of the the first series, but instead of Ed receiving death, he was given the chance to live on and find a way back to his brother again.

  26. Watcherzero says:

    I think a good metaphor is how its so easy to tell the difference between CGI and film, CGI is too perfect, theirs too few defects, dirt, cracks or imperfections and so the eye can always tell which is the better more realistic version.

    In the same way the first series had this, people died pointlessly, people didnt learn from their mistakes, charachters had to wing it when their plans didnt always work. This was much more reflective of real life than the second series where everyone was perfect, every death was a noble and meaningful sacrifice, people always learned from their mistakes and everything always went to plan.

    To me the first series was film, the second was CGI.

  27. Kim says:

    I am sorry but just because a character grows and learns something from their experience does not make it fake. That’s called character development and good writing.

    In real life people DO learn from their mistakes, they DON’T always die needless deaths, and people DO get happy endings. I don’t think the ending of the 2nd series is perfect I find it hopeful & positive. That doesn’t make it any less poignant and real than the first series with all its forced emotion and needless melodrama.

  28. Kim says:

    I should add I don’t think there is anything wrong with preferring the more dramatic/darker first series to the more hopeful/lighter 2nd series. But when you say one is film the other is CGI or one is art the other is trash. That is what I have an issue with because it is complete nonsense.

  29. psgels psgels says:

    Whoa there, there’s no need to look at this in such a black and white way. In real life, it’s not like people either learn from all their experiences or the other way around, instead they learn from some cases, while at others they don’t.

    Personally my biggest gripe against the first season wasn’t this overacting. There are plenty of other shows that have that and where it works. I wouldn’t say that it’s not understanding the manga, instead it’s just a completely different interpretation. Nothing wrong with that.

    Instead, I did not like how the first season had so many forced plot points. The first half suffered because it tried too hard to make Ed like a hero by making him run into situations in which he conveniently save the day in half-assed stories. In the second half, it was the tendency of the creators to bring back characters who had no business being there. These characters were in most cases completely shallow (the biggest example I can think of right now being Rose) and took time and focus away from the characters that really mattered.

  30. Kim says:

    Whoa there, there’s no need to look at this in such a black and white way. In real life, it’s not like people either learn from all their experiences or the other way around, instead they learn from some cases, while at others they don’t.

    To clarify I wasn’t trying to say that things always work out for people in real life either. Sometimes they don’t but at the same time sometimes they do. And neither situation is more realistic than the other. So I agree with you. :)

  31. Reltair says:

    Awesome series that are also long are so rare these days…

  32. Scytheslash says:

    I get a bad feeling the movie is going to be an intersection of the previous FMA characters and Brotherhood characters…….. maybe Dante will make an appearance again? Revisiting Ishvaal seems pointless, after it has been resolved in the show

  33. Bobby says:

    i am a little confused as to what exactly the brotherhood movie can cover. i mean, after defeating a guy who was essentially a god, what kind of decent bad guy can they create that ISN’T a total (KITTEN) by comparison (lol)

    the review and grade is pretty spot on IMHO

  34. Ive says:

    I will say it again: the end of FMA brotherhood was all about fighting, killing etc.

    Thank God. I’m tired of series where people try to stay away from fighting and killing the enemy because of their idiotic morals. I was fine with Ed saving Pride, but if he and the rest of the soldiers weren’t cheering for Father’s death, something would be terribly lacking.

    I’m not saying that peace isn’t a good thing, and that morals are always idiotic; not at all. I’m just… so tired of good guys not killing the main, evil bad guys. If a person like Father, or Kimblee (who I actually really like as a character) is in my grasp, that is it: I would take their life and never think twice about it. They are evil, and they must be stopped. That in and of itself can be a moral, too, I suppose.

    I also really like the Ishbalan Massacre and its implications on the soldiers in general. They were ‘only following orders’, but since they were still human, they had deal with their obediance. It was really… rather nice, in its own way.

    Oh, I loved all the FMA series. I liked this series more then the First Series by a long shot, though I’d consider the Manga tied with Brotherhood.

    The biggest problems with this series, and I know there are a few of them, that I can think off top hand are the start of the series (but that was inevitable, unforunately), the ‘last minute save’ (this one irritates me in all forms of media, though), and the lack of good characters dying. I don’t want it to be a total death-march, but…

  35. Ibrahim Peasnell says:

    I decided to drop this series around episode thirty when the plot became more complicated and characters reappearing in this series. One element of this series I dislike is the character designs and art director of this series compared to the previous series of FMA. I did watch the last couple of episodes just for interest sake, and I can say that the ending of FMA:Brotherhood is a bit better then the previous series of FMA, though the music was better in the first series of FMA then FMA:Brotherhood. Overall, I would say that FMA:Brotherhood is a nice addition to the FMA franshise though prefer the first series of FMA over the second due to that I prefear good music and character designs over a better plot of FMA:Brotherhood.

  36. Tan-Tan says:

    The fact that a lot of people are arguing about FMA:Brotherhood means it’s an awesome series :D A lot of you seem to argue about the battle in the end. I understand we view this as “barbarism” but do you really know the meaning of the final battle? A struggle between forces?

    @jimao: World domination was never the goal of Father. By saying that, I already know you didn’t understand the story. Father wants to learn more of the world and to be the “perfect being”. He already thinks he is above humans and simply wishes to “be more”.

    People consider Brotherhood having a happy ending. And apparently, they don’t like the fact that none of the main characters die because of the “lack of sacrifice” and probably pissed of (@jimao again) that Roy got his eyes back.

    Yes, well, we do enjoy misery more than happy endings :P We seem to be unable to accept happiness happening totally.

  37. israel8491 says:

    I think this is a very good grade. FMA Brotherhood was an amazing anime, but it was not without flaws.
    I got introduced to the manga first. I fell head over heels in love, and from there I went to the anime. I watched the first episode of the first anime before calling it quits. I hated the art. It was just bad. I read the new plot line on various sites and from there I’ve gotten a good idea of how the anime-verse works. I think it has some interesting ideas, but it can’t hold a candle to the manga-verse.
    Brotherhood I really loved. I wasn’t very pleased when it deviated from the manga, but I understood. The only thing I disliked was the first episode (what’s with that, both animes have sucky first episodes?) but after that it got great. I really liked the art, especially in comparison to the first anime’s.
    In the end, Brotherhood was a great anime and I’m so glad it got to run for as long as it did.
    To everyone who wanted more people to die, *ahem*: Nina, Alexander, Tucker, Hughes, Lust, Envy, Sloth, Gluttony, Wrath, Greed, Father, Hohenheim, Buccaneer, Fu, about ten thousand Ishvalans, who knows how many soldiers, Trisha, Barry, Slicer, everyone from the Devil’s Nest, Cornello….
    Really? You want more? I’m amazed at how many people survived.
    And after all the stuff they’ve been through, I think the characters have earned their happy ending.

  38. Mr. Derrrrp says:

    Fullmetal Alchemist is GOD. plain and simple.
    The english dub is excellent as well.
    Now go to your room!

  39. gedata says:

    I guess I’m the only one who was legitimatley amazed by what both series did

  40. ArmourBB says:

    I need to say that I love that extra jab the manga take at the 2003 anime when Riza said:
    ‘Is Ed going to sacrifice himself to bring Al back?’
    and Roy answered: ‘No, because he knows the pain of being left alone and he wouldn’t put Al through that.’

    This. So much.

    TAKE THAT fma2003

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AidanAK47
Well to those whom it might concern, expect my posts to be later than usual this week. Work is hell at the moment.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I have to say, this is probably a bit hypocritical, but while I enjoy dubs of anime I really really can't stand dubs of foreign films.
Lenlo
Simo Hayha would make a pretty crazy Archer.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I imagine a fate strange fake adaptation will materialize eventually.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But everyone seems to want that Finnish sniper as a Fate servant .
Kaiser-Eoghan
Still no Mao, still mad.
Kaiser-Eoghan
....I have lost track of the historical characters in the fate lineup.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, to expand on that point the following historical figures are now female: Nero Claudius, Leonardo da Vinci, Frankenstein's Monster, Xuanzang, Jing Ke, Quetzalcoatl, Minamoto no Yoshitsune, Miyamoto Musashi, Okita Souji and many more to come.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I find it's an enjoyable watch though flawed. If you can get past some odd fanservice around the first ten episodes then I say it's worth watching.
Anonymous2133468
So i was thinking if i start watching, darling in the franxx, is worth it? or is just another 6/10 anime?
Lenlo
God damnit. Why Nasu. Just why.
AidanAK47
@Kaiser, that ain't even Lewd.
Kaiser-Eoghan
In all seriousness its ridiculous, the Japanese will make a cute/moe girl out of anything.
AidanAK47
....Should I also mention that Francis Drake is a big boobed pirate queen?
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Posting lewd images on a respectable chatbox.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, But none of these characters are in the anime adaptions. Well besides Jack and Saber.
Lenlo
Aidan, all this conversation did was prove that my decision to only ever watch the Ufotable adaptions was the correct decision.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, you can blame Extella for the Attlia the Hun thing. I wasn't too fond of it myself. Also should mention Attila is female as well.
https://pm1.narvii.com/6414/528599445b739909c02993cfdbfc9f277d088cf2_hq.jpg
AidanAK47
Also Masky I will be the first to admit to the ridiculous aspects of the Fate Franchise but do take note that you are commenting on something you know literally nothing about. Which is the very definition of ignorance and is quite annoying. Fate/Zero nails the themes it's going for. So go watch Fate/Zero, come back and apologize.
AidanAK47
@Masky, Give it time. Genghis is getting in there eventually with Grand Order. We just had Anastasia and Salieri introduced after all. And it's not as if this story introduces Servants willy nilly, they need actual story purpose. Genghis Khan wouldn't have fit the Narrative that Fate/Zero was going for.
Lenlo
Wait Attila is an Alien and Edison is a Lion? God damnit Fate. Why are you doing this to me. I was already annoyed at your treatment of Musashi
Masky
(aliens existing in the show is good example of that missing on themes part xP)
Masky
*most successful conqueror
Masky
Honestly was just amused most conqueror of all time not being featured in the show :D But wait, whats this about aliens?
AidanAK47
Anyway the important thing to take into account is that in the Fate universe, King Arthur is a woman, Attila the Hun is an Alien, Thomas Edison is a lion and Jack the Ripper is a little girl in a dominatrix outfit. Any questions?
AidanAK47
And while you don't need to watch something to be given divine right to comment on ideas or themes, it does leave you ignorant of how that show handles those ideas and themes.
AidanAK47
As for the Historical Alexander, he wasn't given the title of King of Couquerors. Fate/Zeros interpretation of him was. As generally accurate Fates interpretation of Servents history can be, they can make changes to suit the narrative.
AidanAK47
In that Regard Alexander was doing the conquest thing before Ghengus did. Ghengus likely has some other title. Hell he may only have the title because public consciousness was is more familiar with Alexander than Ghengus.
AidanAK47
Yeah, looking it up seems the King Title lost quite a lot of meaning in the Nasuverse. Though the King Title is rather flimsy. I mean Arthur is the King of Knights cause of the Knights of the round table. Gil is king of heroes because his tale was the first Heroic myth.
Lenlo
I think Alexander was just the first one they thought of, and they couldnt retroactively give it to someone else.

That said, Broskander deserves it <3
Masky
(And no, you don't need to watch something to be given divine right to comment on ideas or themes of it.)
Masky
(just to note in case I need to note, I do tend to do at least cursory research when I make comments on stuff I don't watch)
Masky
That first part is semantics as Fate gives title "King" to historical figures who weren't kings already :D Also, you can make that argument about historical Alexander the Great? Since that seriously sounds like kind of weak reason.
AidanAK47
Also sees Rider as deserving of title of "King of Conquerors" because that which he strives to conquer most is not lands or material wealth, but the hearts of people, the toughest conquest that can be undertaken by anyone.
AidanAK47
@Masky, Ghengis Khan wasn't a king. He was a Khan.
Lenlo
Ghengis is always a Rider in my mind.
Kaiser-Eoghan
But in all seriousness, Ghengis would be an appropriate beserker servant.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Masky: I know, it feels so wrong I'm still mad I can't summon Karl Marx or Stalin.
Masky
So wait, Fate series is about historical figures with super powers, but "King of Conquerors" title isn't given to Ghengis Khan? :D Seriously? Thats just so wrong
Kaiser-Eoghan
I don't feel any point in finishing it, it feels like something that I'd just randomly drop , not because its a bad show, but because I got my fill of it.
AidanAK47
I am actually going to drop blogging it.
AidanAK47
@Sash, indeed. I have been watching it but not blogging it for the last few episodes because it just hasn't givne me anything to say. I don't think it's a bad show but I have pointed out the flaws and strengths of it already so there is truly nothing more to say on it.
Sash
I think wotakoi is starting to feel repetitive..
Kaiser-Eoghan
You are now aware Shana and Batman Ninja Harelequinn are both voiced by Rie kugimiya.
Lenlo
I did. It was... It was a thing.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Did you end up watching Batman ninja by the way?
Lenlo
Music is great, yeah. When the music is on point, everything goes up. Everytime the sync the fight/punches to the music I just get hyped. Like the rotating shot with Aragaki or the first fight in episode 1.
Lenlo
Ill do my best to be clearer in the future on that front. Yeah, I dont mind twists like this. Makes the inevitable Mikio fight, narratively, even better.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I feel the music does alot of the lifting.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Oh, so that was it.
Lenlo
Sorry if I never made that clear.
Lenlo
I would rather have fewer, amazing, fights than a lot of low-quality fights. This is a one cour show, the more meaning/impact they can give each fight the better.

Like Aragaki, narratively, was great. Loved it. Its just in animation/choreography that it falls flat.
Lenlo
Im disappointed with the animation of the fights. Narratively, I think they are quite good.
Kaiser-Eoghan
*disappointed with the fights in past episodes
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Pretty much what I said I thought of the episode. Although I was surprised how took the episodes ending, I expected you to see it as a slap in the face after being disappointed with the fights.
Lenlo
Also, @Kaiser, I thought Megalo Box did something unique this episode. I wasn't expecting Joe to *not* fight. And the Mikio/Yukiko proxy war is an interesting character motivation. Im betting Yukiko will get Joe a full citizenship, effectively getting her on his side.
Lenlo
I wish I was physically capable of watching Megalo Box without thinking of Hajime no Ippo. I really do. But everytime I watch it, it makes me want to watch Ippo again to.
Anonymous2120908
I watched some more of the Chimera family chinese anime. (Wasn't aware it was monthly released). And geez, I like the concept, the background art is very pretty and contrasts with settings that have become tired in other anime. Yet sadly the animation and script are WEAK. I haven't grasped the quality of what's expected of these types of production but I want to believe, they're trying.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Not much in the way of action in megalobox this week, but I did like the focus on Yukkiko getting a small character moment and then the big moment at episodes end .
AidanAK47
@Anon, That's some lazy ass trolling buddy. Should have stopped before the hashtags.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I'm even sort of looking forward to supposedly less respectable stuff like Goblin slayer and happy sugar life.
Vonter
Also E3 is almost here. And I can't wait. I think Nintendo will have a good show considering they're revealing the new Smash with a tournament. There's rumors of the new game by Retro Studios (Metroid Prime and Donkey Kong) and maybe they'll reveal something about how Pokemon will be on the Switch.
Vonter
Also there's always the chance of something new being discovered. Not everything needs expectations behind. Sometimes great things come out of nowhere.
Kaiser-Eoghan
So yes, there are some at least decent shows coming out.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Anon: Muh Baki, Muh Bananna fish, muh made in abyss season 2, muh Vinland.
Anonymous2119906
The rest of this year looks like shit for anime and 2019 doesn't look great either #fuckmoe #makeanimegreatagain
Anonymous2119214
@Kaiser yeah it happened in half the amount of eps this time around for steins gate 0; which i expected considering there's a lot of ground to cover
Anonymous2119106
@Supermario Something like Fate or the LOTR films are a different case. I get where you're coming from about your preference, but I'm arguing that if a large story is going to be split into 3 films, it helps that the 3 films feel cleanly cut. Infinity war, even though we know there's a second part to the story, feels like it has that cohesive narrative structure with a beginning, middle, and end
Anonymous2119106
@Super Mario yea but the marvel movies are a different situation so i don't think the comparison is as appropriate. Marvel movies are "episodic" in nature rather than a continuous narrative. The films are largely isolated stories that are happening in a similar universe that only happen to "congeal" narratively because of a few overarching details shared between films.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: I remember when the original series suddenly shifted and got going and it was a really depressing episode.
Lenlo
Oh baby. The storm has finally come in Steins;Gate. Let the true suffering commence
SuperMario
@anon2118276: that's why I don't like LoTR trilogy. It's still a whole body chopped up in 3 parts, despite how clean the cut is. Whereas for me it works better if it was like a branch in a tree. The Marvel movies (despite my disinterest on those) are a good example of this.
Kaiser-Eoghan
While I did feel some of this weeks steins gate felt fillery, I do like see these characters interact and given the episodes conclusion, this episode acted as a calm before the storm.
Lenlo
Ill agree with you on King Kong. As for the Ralph Bakshi LotR, I have. I am still to this day impressed by the overlay of 2D art onto real/overexposed footage. It makes for shockingly fluid animation in places and has its own distinct style
Anonymous2118208
@Lenlo - Have you watched the old Ralph Bakshi adaptation of the first two books? It's uneven, but it's interesting comparing and contrasting certain decisions. As good as Peter Jackson is, I feel he makes very longwinded films, I like his version of King Kong a lot, but it is too long.
Anonymous2118276
@supermario i disagree; the point is that even though the LOTH films have cliffhanger endings, they still feel like fils. they have a defined first second and third act with well paced tension and release throughout them. They follow a storytelling macrostructure necessary for films to feel like cohesive narratives even if they are to end on a cliffhanger
Lenlo
I quite liked the individual LOTR movie just fyi
Vonter
Marvel surprisingly has kept their movies simple enough, that while you might miss details nowadays, you can tell what's happening.
Vonter
Another bad case is like with Assassin's Creed, which like Lost, just tried to tease a lot of things, then it grew tired of trying to piece them together and let the last games work more standalone, with little hints of a larger lore.
Vonter
Metroid does both, it has a standalone story and a hint to what a sequel might bring. Though that hint rarely matters by the time the new game is released.
Vonter
@SuperMario - Some videogames trilogies also do that. Gears of War and God of War had good standalone beginnings but by the second game they put cliffhanging endings. Kingdom Hearts does that and I expect 3 to also do it. Megaman Legends and Half Life had incomplete stories, which might be the worse case in regards to trying to make a continuous story.
SuperMario
It ruins the appetite
SuperMario
I actually think Lord of the Rings' trilogy is a bad example to follow. These films are meant to be viewed as a whole, so each film doesn't hold much as an individual story. I just can't digest films that have "to be continued" sign at the end. Imagine having a first course meal and then have to wait for few days for second course
Kaiser-Eoghan
On the current topic, I would be well for the production of a long running, ambitious ova series.
Anonymous2116425
then again, i don't take too much issue with these films feeling like movie-sized eps...the wait just sucks is all
Anonymous2116425
clearly the films need each other to tell the whole story, yet they can be taken for what they are in isolation as well
Anonymous2116425
I don't mind the trilogy trend at all; like Aidan said, when everything is said and done, all the films will be available to watch. I just think a stronger attempt should be made to make them feel like complete films. Something like the lord of the rings trilogy is a great example of how to do this
Kaiser-Eoghan
I am in full confidence that neither I nor Miura will survive to the end of berserk.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Of course maybe they won't have a future , think about it that way, then they'd never see it, life has that weird way of being unpredictable like that =P
Kaiser-Eoghan
You can always rewatch them just before watching the one after.
AidanAK47
Of course not. But that's the thing. The wait is only a temporary problem. Anyone in the future will have all movies ready to view.
SuperMario
So it's best to wait for another 2 years to watch Heaven's Feel? Hell NOT
AidanAK47
When all the movies come out though you can basically barrel through it like a TV series.
SuperMario
Dangit, it's me Mario
Anonymous2115918
I still don't know if I like this trilogy trend. We've had a fair bun h of those in recent years (Berserk Golden Age, Madoka, even Kizumonogatari). I guess doing it that way, they'd make much more profits, and we have higher production values, but the wait is way too long and I don't think it works as movie-format
Kaiser-Eoghan
One of the very rare times where self-awareness works.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I can be nice and say of course Ryan Reynolds+ violence, comic was funnier.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: But I'm sure if you think it over, the first deadpool was trapped in origin story mode, as an advantage, the sequel, is probably free of that.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: Deadpool 2 had John Wicks director, which at the least means something in terms of action direction.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Aidan: There was a whole run of deadpool issues called Cable and deadpool, which I suppose that pairing together gets the best out of the character.
AidanAK47
Seen Deadpool 2 tonight and I have difficultly deciding if it's better or worse than Deadpool 1. Still it's quite fun and I enjoyed it.
AidanAK47
@Anon, I feel somewhat similar in regards to Franxx. When this series finishes I won't be singing high praises for it. Yet I do feel that it's worth watching.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, Now I get ya. Yeah I understand that. I might even feel the same if I didn't already know the story from the VN.
AidanAK47
@Amagi, The second film seems to be in cinema this year but we won't get it until it hits blu-ray.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Travlos: As I expected, I am disappointed that they have held back . And you might just be right about Castrollop/Caligula/Nero, when I originally attempted to watch the show years ago, that was the episode I stopped on.
KTravlos
Yang really is stealing the show this time. But I wanted the "Alcohol is mankind's oldest friend" rant. I need it.
KTravlos
my expectation is that they will take this to the Battle of Armistar, and then the films will cover the dual civil wars etc.
KTravlos
...CASTROP REBELLION! Why the hell sacrifice an episode to the most useless and bad part of the original! I hated that episode. Well let us see if they can give it a better twist this time around.
KTravlos
The Iserlohn arc at LGOGH:NT was ok. I liked how they presented the preparations. I like the new Murai face. The music was quite good. But they did tone the violence. I expected Walter to stab the imperial officer in the neck. They have toned down the violence a lot. And I missed Seeckts "Long live the Empire" death. That said it was not bad, and I think in general it was good adaption. But....
Anonymous2115268
for example, I think Darling in the franxx is pretty average, but that's not because i think it doesn't have cool shit in it or things that make it appealing; I just find that what the show tries to achieve is not that stupendous or worth lauding with praise. As a result, the flaws stick out that much more to me
Anonymous2115268
@Lenlo and that's pretty much how i felt. Everything is subject to criticism; hell i criticize my most favorite things in the world because i know they're not perfect. I evaluate art and media on whether what it achieves overshadows the flaws and to what degree. Which i think is the best way to approach criticism
Lenlo
I want to repeat though, Heavens Feel wasn't bad. I know some people take any criticism to mean I hated it, but I actually quite enjoyed it. I just think ill appreciate/enjoy it more once the other 2 movies are also out.
Lenlo
@Anon, you nailed it. I couldnt describe it, but what you said /feels/ right.

And Aidan, I loved Lindsay Ellis's videos on the whole Hobbit debacle. A shame, cause the original Lord of the Rings is a landmark in film for me.
Amagi
@Aidan: Do we know if the next HF movie will be finished this year?
Amagi
I love how and how often they say "Fujimi no Sugimoto" in Golden Kamuy. It's pretty hype for some reason, especially when it's said by his enemies.
Anonymous2114206
yea. heaven's feel is nothing like the situation with peter jackson's hobbit; this story needs this many movies and that large runtime. The thing with these heavens feel films that is probably bothering lenlo is that they feel like very long episodes and that particularly the first film felt like a giant prologue rather than a film with a beginning, middle, and end
AidanAK47
And just to make it clear, Heavens Feel needs at least three movies to cover the entire story. It's too big for one movie.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, I ain't unhappy about it though. Sucks that I need to wait so long for each movie but there is higher production values as a result. Though in regards to the Hobbit I recommend watching Lindseys Eillis videos on it. As it not only talks about how it screwed the Hobbit but also how the movies screwed New Zealand.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I could never immerse myself in Tolkienistic world building.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Man, the hobbit, lord of the rings and that shit king kong film, he sold out so much , this was the man who gave me Heavenly creatures , Braindead and Feebles.
Lenlo
It is very beautiful indeed. And Aidan, that Hobbit metaphor made me weep for you. I hated what happened to the Hobbit
Anonymous2112805
other than that; HF is a very beautiful looking film; ufotable has improved with their digital compositions...holy crap
Anonymous2112805
heaven's feel seems to be embracing its more horrific elements. Aside from that, watching this film made me realize how much i prefer rin over the rest of the girls; kinda wish we got to spend a bit more time understanding Sakura's psyche in the film
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: This was part of some film fest thing, ended up missing big fish Begonia though, that Chinese animated thing =<
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: they'd invited him to introduce the flick.
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: Had this really unexpected run in, in my nearest arthouse cinema, seeing some film about the Soviet space program , I bump into this eastern European guy, assume he's an audience member, awkwardly say something in Russian to him, turns out he's the Russian federation ambassador to Ireland.
AidanAK47
It's sort of the hobbit situation where they chopped one book into three. Expect here we aren't getting extra fluff to pad things out. Well there are extra scenes but they are actually relevant.
Point is that in it's orignal form there are no stopping points here were you need to wait a year to continue. It was a straight story from start to finish.
AidanAK47
Well Fate is essentially the tutorial section that introduces most of the concepts and whatnot. But even then some of the things here are explained later in Heaven's Feel. Cause yeah, not only is the Fate/Stay Night VN not supposed to be split up into three seperate things, the routes aren't supposed to be split into movies either.
Lenlo
Im only familiar with the UBW route, cause Ufotable
Lenlo
I see.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, In a way there is. Heaven's Feel was originally meant to be experience after the Fate and UBW routes of the VN. That the thing Fate/Stay Night has struggled with. It's not meant to be split up into three like this. It's originally supposed to be three parts of a whole. Each route complementing another.
Nayrael
And so am I
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Lenlo: Its like....sometimes I actually want to be able to like something I end up not liking, knowing I am the problem and not the show.
Anonymous2110797
Spoiler alaert: anime is trash
Lenlo
I can understand that. I cant stand Clannad, so everytime I ask for a decent romance and it gets recommended I die alittle inside.
Kaiser-Eoghan
While thats very true that not everyone agreeing does make things more interesting, at the same time theres some sense of feeling left out when not understanding the appeal of something extremely well loved.
Lenlo
Also @Maskey +1. If everyone agreed with each other, it would be boring. I love hearing what other people think on stuff.
Lenlo
Also, @Kaiser, give Ippo a try. It is one of the longest running and best sports anime/manga ever made. I sincerely believe this. That said, Megalo Box isnt bad. I still enjoy it. Ive just seen boxing done better.
Lenlo
It wasnt a bad movie. It just felt like it had a lot going on. Like Gil had a 30 sec clip, I don't really understand what the ribbon monster is but I suspect its the grail, and the new Assassin pulling an Alien, while cool, came out of left field. Like, once I just accepted it and moved on it was a fun movie. It just felt like there was a base of knowledge I needed but didnt have.
Masky
Eh, its okay to not like something that someone else likes. I disagree rather often with blog writers' opinions here but I still enjoy reading their opinions
Kaiser-Eoghan
@Mario: There was a another idolmaster show and it had mecha in it.
Kaiser-Eoghan
Based on that I think I'm getting more out of it because I've only seen a few ippo episodes so I don't have much to go on to compare.
Kaiser-Eoghan
I think thats the reason here Lenlo, comparatively to you, I have seen much less of ippo so, contrasting megalo box with it isn't something I can really do.
AidanAK47
But seriously, you can ask me on discord about anything you didn't quite get, provided it's not explained later.
AidanAK47
@Lenlo, you are just a big dumb dumb that cannot understand art.
SuperMario
... more films coming soon
SuperMario
@Lenlo: maybe wanting more is a right feeling since there will be 2
Lenlo
So just finished Heavens Feel and I was... not as impressed as Aidan. As someone who is not a big TypeMoon fan, I had a lot of trouble keeping up with what was happening. It was pretty don't get me wrong. Thats Ufotable for you. But as a cohesive story it left me wanting
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This may be half a year overdue but I simply can’t accept that none of the writing staff of Star Crossed Anime have cover the the biggest development in anime where Netflix took a hand in producing anime in the form of Neo Yokio. Taking place in the metropolis of Neo Yokio, a mashup between […]

Devilman Crybaby – 83/100

It’s an exciting time to be an anime fan where new business models and players are making big waves within the animation industry. After debuting with the original and excellently-produced Neo Yokio, the juggernaut streaming service of Netflix has decided to revive the classic series of Devilman and gives it the full adaption treatment. By […]