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FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST #1 - - Special Review

Should somebody who's seen BROTHERHOOD even bother with this?

That's the thing about Hulu. It makes watching anime just so damn easy. So even your idlest thoughts get seen through.

I've already reviewed all 64 episodes of FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST BROTHERHOOD, as well as the FMA:B movie, as well as the special OAV set. I'm searching for a fitting analogy to describe how redundant giving the first anime series the same treatment feels. Is it the equivalent of re-playing a game on Medium Difficulty after you've already beaten it on Hard? Maybe it's akin to watching the theatrical cut of a flick after you've already watched the director's cut?

Hm. Neither of those really correspond to directly so, to state it plainly, I feel like watching this iteration of FMA wouldn't be worth my time. The animation, while certain capable and stylish, is unmistakably behind the polished and more expensive work of the remake. And fans' distaste for the "gecko ending" this plot leads up to was pretty palpable while I was in the face of the remake's more faithful adaptation. Indeed, this episode opens with what I believe was the second arc of the BROTHERHOOD and, even past the repetitiveness of seeing the same plot again, I'm already feeling like this is the superficial and slightly de-clawed version of the material (graphic images of Ed's bloody, severed limbs notwithstanding).

Even Vic Mignogna's take on Edward's voice seems a lot more general and less distinctive than what he achieved with his performance in BROTHERHOOD. This almost feels like his audition reel for that series - - recorded while he was still working out his ideas for the character.

Honestly, to a fan with the unusual position of coming into the FMA fold through BROTHERHOOD first, there isn't much appeal to watching the rest of this (outside of maybe needing something to kill a huge chunk of free time on an idle Sunday - - and I never get those any more). It just feels like the rough draft, and thus, it doesn't warrant a proper review.

Actually, maybe that's the better discussion point - - should somebody who's started with FMA: B even bother with FMA? Do some of you prefer this iteration to the next one? Why? I'd really be curious everybody's take on it.

Watch this episode, "Those Who Challenge the Sun” here and decide for yourself.

Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk

sickVisionz moderator on Nov. 13, 2012 at 4:43 a.m.

@J_D90 said:

So Should I check out Brotherhood even after Ive seen the original series and its sequel film?

They are two different takes on the same content. If you like the basic elements of the world and the Elrics, you'll probably like Brotherhood as well and you have the bonus that you're not getting a remake, you're getting a completely new and different story set in that world.

and others, I never meant disrespect to the manga author. I probably said it in a fanboy rage but what I meant was that I think people elevate these writers to god like levels that they simply aren't at when they completely dismiss anything not written by a comic writer as bad by default. Very few people slamming the original bring up stuff like characters, acting, music, etc (ie things that would actually impact the quality of an anime series). The stance is always that, "it wasn't written by a comic book writer therefore it is worse."

All of my comments about an action series for 13-year-olds wasn't meant to draw a difference between either anime series or the manga and say that one is and one isn't, but to exaggerate how kinda crazy it is to say that anything not written in an action series for 13-year-olds must be bad by default.

There are tons of examples of things not being written by comic book writers but still turning out pretty damn good when turned into movies or tv series.

thekokapellion Nov. 18, 2012 at 7:47 p.m.

@MsDiva: I'm glad I'm not the only one in the universe who feels that way. I don't hate Brotherhood or anything, I just don't understand where all this hate for the original is coming from. Is it because it wasn't the same as the manga? Is it because Brotherhood is newer and boasts flashier animation? Is it because of the ending? None of those strike me as very good reasons, and so far no one has been able to give me a good argument for why Brotherhood is the superior version. I don't understand.

Dig Deeper into Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is the second anime series based on Hiromu Arakawa's original manga. Edward Elric with his brother Alphonse failed to resurrect their mother. Now, they travel across the country with their alchemy to restore their bodies as they hunt for the mythical Philosophers Stone and correct their mistake.

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