Nobody gasp, now, as I pull back the curtain and reveal a startling secret...
My choices for these columns are partly determined by the likelihood that the selected shows will spur comments and attract views....!
And, surprise of surprises, there’s a handful of popular franchises that are quite reliable to that end.
So, like I said in my write-up of the last episode, I’ve got reservations about covering another version of a series I’ve already covered in exhaustive detail. The prospect seems redundant to me. However, there’s no arguing with results and, judging by the response the first episode’s write-up got, there’s no really no denying that FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST - - in any permutation - - continues to be topical and relevant.
So here we are. I was aiming to swap GALAXY EXPRESS out for FMA this week, but things got a little messy when the latest episode of the former proved to be so good. “Special Review,” if you haven’t noticed, is supposed to be my sampler column while W&L is the episode-by-episode log - - and this flies in the face of that a little. We’ll see how long this messiness goes on for.
Anyway… how about the episode, itself? Well, I feel like I should almost include a checklist of qualitative comparisons to BROTHERHOOD in every episode's review.
- Cornello’s pocket-packed minigun was so silly. He’s a sillier villain than in BROTHERHOOD.
- The reveal of Rose’s faux-boyfriend as bird monstrosity was creepier than any of the Chimairas in BROTHERHOOD. Eeesh. For damn sure.
- Overall, this all feels poorly established in comparison to BROTHERHOOD. Both series get us to the good Alchemical action right away and then got to Elric Bros’ “secret origin” gradually. While BROTHERHOOD’s opting to start in media res felt like sharp storytelling instincts, this feels like key exposition has just been hopped over carelessly. How big of a shock is it to learn that Cornello’s Philosophe's Stone is a fake when we haven’t been told what a Philosopher's Stone is in the first place?
So far, so… mixed, I guess? Stay tuned for the next write-up - - either in Watch & Learn or as another Special Review.
Watch this episode, "Body of the Sanctioned" here and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.