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Watch & Learn: Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood #2

This is like the harsh reality of HARRY POTTER.

  These kids are perverting nature!
 These kids are perverting nature!

FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST's almost like a horrifyingly real version of HARRY POTTER. This is what would really happen if you let kids dabble in primordial magics far beyond their understanding - - they'd go on and transgress on some terrible taboo that anybody older would have the horse sense not to touch, and they'd up blowing themselves up. Think about it - - how different is it really for Edward to lose his limbs this than for him to lose some fingers playing with fireworks? Rendering grown-up subjects in a childish style seems to be this show's M.O. If you stop and think about it, it's actually quite unnerving to see this kind of Kabbalistic morality play - - with children trying to cheat death, tap into forbidden knowledge and beg to elemental forces for forgiveness- - rendered with big eyed characters and slapstick pratfalls. It's almost like, I don't know, DUCK TALES doing FAUST.

  Ha ha ha... and Edward thought he was hot s***.
 Ha ha ha... and Edward thought he was hot s***.

I suspect the implied (or, at least, unsaid) reason for Edward being such an advanced alchemist is that he basically fell into all the knowledge of  the universe. He probably doesn't even understand it himself, yet. And, like every precious kid, he's a big brat. Sheesh... that granny's giving him free dinner and he's giving her lip in return? TSK TSK....
 
Man... that whole scene in the void was a little trippy and more than a little unnerving. I  like the design of that entity he encounters - - being rendered only in its shadows - - but that's imagery right out of a nightmare. I get the sinking feeling that that's only going to be the start of the darker patches in this show. Most of you have said as such, anyway. You've also said similar things about GURREN LAGANN. Does every long-form show start off fun and sun only to get progressively heavier and more philisophcal?

“Fullmetal, huh? I like it. It sounds menacing.”

I loved that line. I'm still convinced that the creator of the manga must've been a FULL METAL JACKET fan and this title just came out of him riffing some ideas with friends during a sake session. “How about a Full Metal.... alchemist?! Ha ha ha!”
 
Watch this episode "The First Day" here and below, and read my comments on the previous episode here.

    
    -- Tom Pinchuk is the writer of UNIMAGINABLE for Arcana Studios and HYBRID BASTARDS! for Archaia. HYBRID BASTARDS! is available  here and UNIMAGINABLE is available here for pre-order on Amazon.com.  

Count_Zeroon July 10, 2010 at 10:27 p.m.
I think there are a few Full Metal Jacket fans amongst the anime and manga industry. See also: Full Metal Panic (which is trying to be a little more overt with the FMJ reference there, because it's alternate universe modern military).
sotyfan16on July 11, 2010 at 2:03 a.m.

One of the dark aspects is the idea of kids going through such an ordeal (if such a general term is usable in their case). Yet, who wouldn't then want to have access to restricted information to regain what they lost? Even if it meant being exactly that, a dog of the military. 
 
Ed and Al are still just kids but they go through more than many others and still sometimes come out with a smile. The scene of the other realm is different here in Brotherhood than in the original FMA. It was a little darker but just as perplexing. And in FMA Ed didn't "gain" or "see" the knowledge of the world. Ed's automail in FMA was specially made for him to use alchemy without a transmutation circle. 
 
This ep really went back and forth with happy and sad moments. 
 
FMA peaked my interest in alchemy and I've learned a little in class and done some research. Alchemy later turned into chemistry but I find the original alchemy basis very interesting, even if it is vastly complicated and nigh impossible to conduct.

kashif1on July 11, 2010 at 2:38 p.m.
beware, series will give you nightmares
zaldaron July 11, 2010 at 3:26 p.m.
Most of the series I like end up starting out light and happy and becoming more philosophical and dark yes.  There are some that do not though.  Read or Die is a good example as is El Hazard.
 
Your description of ducktales doing faust is actually a good description for a lot of anime, and one of the reasons many of us like it and why it doesn't get mainstream acceptance.  At first look people see ducktales and judge it accordingly.  Then if they watch more of it they get to..wait kids shouldn't watch this...but its drawn for kids.  Of course in Japan adults like this drawing style just as much as kids (and I think the Japanese don't shelter their kids as much as we do).
 
Really I was suprized you chose this one but looking forward to your take on it.  I love it dearly much more so than the first one. 
GrandMarshalon July 11, 2010 at 4:39 p.m.
I liked really enjoyed the lastFullmetal Alchemist series but felt there was a huge dead point in the middle of the series around the 30 episode mark. I hope this remake doesnt have the same problem
BigChiefon July 11, 2010 at 6:13 p.m.
@GrandMarshal:  I believe that's around the area in the story that the two diverge completely.
zaldaron July 12, 2010 at 12:24 p.m.
Its actually much earlier than that Big Chief...there really starts being any real connection around like episode seven...this is a MUCH darker version.

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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