Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Part 4)

thumbnail_c299d47c-f538-4f70-88a4-3114eb1a231eI’ve thankfully picked up the pace with Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. The threat of my oldest niece spoiling it on me, was enough for me to get my heinie in gear and get a move on with this series. My oldest niece spoiling Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood would definitely be more annoying, than her reminding me that she’s taller than me. Anyway, before I start rambling, I’ll give you a quick summary of what has happened in part 4.

Ed was impaled and nearly died, while Al struggled to remain conscious. That kick-ass team of Homunculus butt whoopers I was wishing for, happened (it was so awesome). We learnt the full story of Van Hohenheim past and that Papa Humpy (Father) is just a wrinkly old leather handbag and used to live in a flask. We also discovered that Envy was nothing more than a gross, unkillable talking leech.

Everyone eventually headed to central, where my opinion of Major General Olivier Mira Armstrong deteriorated. When she brutally assaulted her brother Alex the sparkly He-Man, then kicked him out of his home and kept having stabs at his sensitive personality. The saddest thing is, Alex saves her from being squashed by Sloth.

Kimblee’s head was nearly bitten of by a lion-man (it was great) and to my great pleasure, he died when he was eaten by Pride (Glob, I hated Kimblee so much). Pride also committed cannibalism and ate Gluttony and Colonel Mustang has finally made his move to take over central. Unfortunately, an army of unkillable zombies was released in central, putting a bit of a dampener on everyone’s plans.

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Chibi Alex

Before we go any further in this review, I’m just going to put my hands up and confess that I absolutely love this anime. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood has literally blown its way into my top 5 anime series. It’s the best darn anime I’ve watched in ages and I’ve not been this excited about an anime in a very long time. Now that I’ve gotten my fangirling out of the way, on with the review.

Part 4 has had all the same great aspects as the 3 previous parts, however two things part 4 has made me aware of is, how great character development and design is in this anime. Character development wise, you really go on a journey with the characters. Van Hohenheim for example, I went from thinking he was a bit of a-hole for leaving his children, to feeling sorry for the guy, to falling in love with his character. His whole background story completely changes how you see Van Hohenheim, adding layers to his character and also makes you develop some empathy for the guy. Ed and Al’s, character development is almost as good as Van Hohenheim. They go from miserable little boys missing their Mummy, to being deeply remorseful and wanting their bodies back at all cost, to wanting to save everyone even if that means not getting back their bodies. Ed and Al really mature throughout the series. Ed even grows a little and looks less boy-like.

The character design in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is something I’ve been really enjoying. The diversity in how characters are drawn is just amazing and works really well together. For example, you have your very masculine sharply drawn characters like Van Hohenheim, the Chimeras, Scar, Alex and King Bradley. The more rounded softly drawn characters like Ed, Winry, May Chang, Pride, Colonel Mustang and Hawkeye. Then, the in-betweens like Ling Yao, Yoki, Kimblee and Hughes and also the extremely animated exaggerated characters like Sloth and Gluttony. There is just so many different drawing styles/character designs going on in this anime, which for me has been a breath of fresh air. Visually for an anime, there’s nothing worse than characters all looking the same, just with different hair styles or different eye and hair colours. It’s like they’ve been made with a cookie cutter or something.

2a626d16-7892-456b-9328-eb198776a377The only real downside to this anime is that it literally takes the characters ages to do anything. For instance, they said promise day was going to happen the next day and 4 episodes later, promise day still didn’t happen. Also, it took them 11 episodes to go to central to kick Papa Humpy’s butt and his butt still hasn’t been kicked. Like seriously I love this anime, but they’re taking the biscuit a bit with that. If I was in the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood universe, I would have given Papa Humpy a good butt whooping by now and be sitting down to a nice cup of Tea with Alex and Van Hohenheim. In saying that however, this is an annoying trope of this type of anime, so I guess I can’t be too harsh on Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.

Overall, part 4 has been as excellent as the previous 3 parts. After, over 50 episodes it still has my attention firmly captured and still has me dying for more. It does have that “takes ages to do anything” trope, but considering how entertaining this anime is, you can kind of let that slide. As this is the best anime series I’ve seen in a very long time, I would highly recommend watching it if you haven’t seen it already.

Rating: 5/5

Predictions:
Now for the part I really enjoy, trying to predict how this anime will end. As these are the last predictions I will make. I’m limiting myself to 5 new predictions and a death list, to make them a little more focused. So far, I made 13½ correct predictions, so I’m confident I’ll get at least one right.

thumbnail_2b5f5f70-ea5d-4730-9b17-05af8ae3fa81My Final Predictions are:
-The zombies, I don’t think anyone is be able to control them. So, they’ll most likely escape into the city, where Briggs’s men will get into an epic fight with them. But as the zombies are unkillable, I predict that Dr Marcoh’s will turn up last minute, to use his Philosopher’s Stone destroying alchemy on them. Either that or they’ll have to trick Envy into absorbing them all.

-Papa Humpy can’t survive outside has container. But from the look of him, his container has seen better day and is starting to age/deteriorate. Therefore, I think Papa Humpy isn’t after an immortal army (he already has that), but is going use transmutation as a way to get a new container or fix/improve the one he has. To be honest, it this point in the anime that’s the only thing he could gain from transmutation. He already controls everything and has his army, so it’s the only thing that would make sense.

– Van Hohenheim and Papa Humpy are linked, so I think in order to kill Papa Humpy, Van Hohenheim is going to have to die, too (like Voldemort in Harry Potter).

– Truth (the shadow thing in the portal) will escape from the portal and Ed and Al will have to fight it, too.

– Hawkeye’s and Scar’s tattoos are going to have to come to play, at some point (otherwise why have them in the anime). Therefore, I predict that they will be the key to defeating Papa Humpy (or Truth if it escapes)

thumbnail_62c6e2ab-bec7-49ac-82be-80e6092065c4My Death list:
Colonel Mustang
Hawkeye
Scar
Izumi Curtis
Major General Olivier Mira Armstrong
The Homunculus and Papa Humpy (they have to die for the anime to come to a satisfying end)
Van Hohenheim (there’s been a lot of red flags with his character. He seems like he wants to die, so if he isn’t killed in the final battle, he’ll probably find another way to die. Like using Dr Marcoh’s Philosopher’s Stone destroying alchemy or letting Ed and Al use him to get their bodies back).

There’s still a lot of my previous predictions in play, but as this post is already rather long and I don’t want to make it any longer on you guys, so I’ll leave them out.

Hope you’ve enjoyed this post and Thanks for reading.

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Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Part 3)

thumbnail_c299d47c-f538-4f70-88a4-3114eb1a231eIt’s been a long time coming, but finally I can bring you my review for part 3 of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. So, what took me so long? Without going too far into personal things, a lot of family stuff happened and I had to deal with/sort out a few things, leaving very little time for anime (or any other type of entertainment). Everything’s a little less hectic now, so I was able to finally finish part 3 and bring you this review.

So, what happened in part 3? Well, there was not as much butt whooping, but we did learn a hell of a lot about alchemy, the Homunculus, Papa Humpy (Father), Ed’s and Al’s father (Van Hohenheim) and the country’s history. Also, King Bradley has taken everyone hostage and is holding Colonel Mustang in a figurative headlock. Ling Yao has turned into an evil creep (I predicted that one). Ed and Al have joined the Night’s watch and gone to the Wall. Sorry I mean they’ve travel north to the icy Fort Briggs, ran by the most awesome anime woman ever, Major General Olivier Mira Armstrong.

Papa Humpy gave birth to a beautiful baby Gluttony through his boobs (it was a very confusing, disturbing experience) and we finally met Sloth. Who is like a giant annoying meerkat, that thinks everything is a pain. Also, Selim Bradley has shown his true creepy nature (predicted that one, too). Bebop and Rocksteady from teenage mutant ninja turtle showed up, for a fight with Scar and I’ve just realised, Ed and Al remind me of Asterix and Obelix from Asterix (or The Adventures of Asterix).

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The exact face I made, when Papa Humpy gave birth to baby Gluttony

As you can see an awful lot happens in part 3. But to be honest, this has been the least enjoyable part of the anime, so far. Don’t get me wrong, I still very much like this anime. It’s just that it’s starting to feel like they’re dragging things out a little too much. Causing me to slightly lose interest in some of the subplots. However, after 39 episodes that’s to be expected, I just hope part 4 manages to recapture my attention again.

On a more positive note, they’ve really laid off the depressing juice in part 3. Aside for Van Hohenheim background story, which had me fighting back the tears (it was very close but I remained dry-eyed). Part 3 was more upbeat and felt more geared towards providing answers and capturing the viewers’ attention, with weird creepy things and a twisted corrupted military.

The animation and characters are still as entertaining as ever. The animation has somehow managed to become even funnier (which isn’t an easy thing to do, so hats off to the animators). The characters have also become that bit more enjoyable and relatable. Particularly, the Ice Queen- Major General Olivier Mira Armstrong, who is now my favourite anime female. She’s so ruthless and tough, but also has a sense of fair play about her and hidden caring side. Her character has really won over my heart (not in a romantic way, more in a “I like the cut of your jib” way).

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Evil Ed Dancing

Opening wise, compared to Hologram, part 3’s opening (Golden Time Lover) is a real improvement. It no longer sounds like elevator music but was upgraded to caller on hold music. It’s still not great but it’s a move in the right direction. Thankfully, part 3’s ending more than makes up for this.

Overall, even though part 3 wasn’t as good as the 2 previous parts, it was still very enjoyable. Being very information heavy, it’s not the kind of thing you could easily binge watch. However, in saying that I still really love this anime and will definitely watch it to the end. The only down side is, when I finish Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, I’ll have to find another great anime to review, which might prove hard.

Rating: 4.9/5

Predictions:
Things are about to get scary because so far, I’ve made 10 correct predictions. Have your tinfoil hats at the ready and prepare for dark times ahead, as I make even more predictions about the final 2 parts of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood:

-Firstly, there has been a little too much attention drawn to Al’s body in part 3. Ending with Al’s body calling out to him as he struggles through a blizzard. Making me think that somethings going to happen to his body. For that reason, I predict that Papa Humpy or King Bradley will find some way to use Al’s body for evil. For example, put a Homunculus, evil spirit or something along those lines, inside it.

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This post ended up a lot longer then expected. So, lets recap on this cute drawing.

-From the way Papa Humpy was talking, Papa Humpy and Van Hohenheim should be around the same age. However, Papa Humpy looks considerably older, so I predict that creating Homunculus costs Papa Humpy some of his life/immortality and makes him grow older.

-I foresee Papa Humpy and Van Hohenheim being some type of god like creature.

-Also, Ed and Al will turn out to be their father’s (Van Hohenheim) own type of Homunculus or they’ll be same the species as him. (The gold eyes make me think that)

– Van Hohenheim is going kick Papa Humpy’s butt and either him or Ed will be the one to kill/destroy him, in the end.

-Scar and Winry will become best buds.

-Scar’s definitely not making it to the end of this anime alive, so I suspect he’ll die saving someone else. Possibly Winry, Ed or May Chang.

-For dramatic effect, it’s better if Dr Marcoh’s group in the tunnels get caught. So, I predict that’s happening.

-Also, those two Chimeras will betray Dr Marcoh’s group. They’re acting way too cheesy for that not to happen.

thumbnail_9f4c51f9-efd8-4735-b47a-af1847c01e07-Al’s armour is starting to reject him, so I think his soul will end up trapped somewhere, causing Ed to have a major freak out.

– The Ice Queen- Major General Olivier Mira Armstrong, will be hauled away to central. I really can’t see King Bradley letting her stay at the fort, in a position of power, without having some level of control over her.

-The Crimson Alchemist (Kimblee) will die next (Just because I don’t like that character. He gets on my wick).

– My complete shot in the dark prediction, is that the Transmutation circle isn’t used to make a Philosopher’s Stone but is used to make another of the same species as Papa Humpy and Van Hohenheim.

-The White Walkers will bring down the wall with their ice dragon (oops wrong show).

-And of course, Ed and Al will get their bodies back, but that’s been completely obvious from the start.

Also, the predictions I still stand by from in part 1 and 2 are:
– Colonel Mustang isn’t going to making it to the end of this anime alive and will be the one who kills King Bradley, in the end.

– The creature made when performing human transmutation, is actually that shadow thing/God called Truth.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Part 2)

thumbnail_c299d47c-f538-4f70-88a4-3114eb1a231eFinally, I’ve finished watching Part 2 of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. I know, what the fudge? How can it take you that long to watch 13 episodes? Well, I was savouring it (Only joking, I’m watching a lot of other series and it takes a while to get around to them all).

So, what has happened since part one? Nothing much really, just a lot of plot building and butt whooping’s. Ed and Al are still looking for the Philosopher’s Stone and getting their butts kicked. Colonel Mustang, isn’t as smart as he thinks and got screwed over big time. A few people from Xing have showed up, to join the battle for the Philosopher’s Stone. We’ve learnt a lot more about King Bradley and the Homunculus and got a glimpse of their Papa. Envy is also ironically very ugly and Gluttony has given us all nightmares about being engulfed by a giant ass eyeball, with big pointy, pointy teeth. (That’s all I can say without spoiling it)

Now for the important part, after 26 episodes is this anime still entertaining. Strangely, it has managed to become even more so. It has really lightened up on the heavy depressing storyline and has gotten very interesting. There still are a few sad moments in part 2, but there’s also a lot more scheming and plotting and a couple more uncertainties thrown into the mix. As well as, more humour and funny animation, preventing the tragic and death-filled story getting too much.

In part 2, we do get a few answers to things and a few characters backstories. However, this leads to more mysteries and more questions. So, overall Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is starting to get very exciting and suspenseful.

thumbnail_db98f359-0b8e-42d3-9b70-aedd05239dd1At this stage, I can still only find a few nit-picky things wrong with Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. One being the change of opening. Again (Yui), was a great opening to have a little sing song and a boogie to (I know, I’m super cringey sometimes), but with the new opening (Hologram), I’m just not feeling it. It feels a little like elevator music. But sure, it’ll probably be changed again in part 3, so we’ll not get too caught up on that.

As good as part 1 and 2 was, I do have a few little concerns about part 3. These being, that the short jokes might start to get annoying and that some of its references might go a little too far (when it comes to history, I know almost nothing. Yet even I am starting to question some of its references).

Overall, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood part 2 was very exciting. It manages to satisfy your thirst for answer in part 1, while still remaining suspenseful and thicken its plot. To be honest after watching part 2, I like this anime even more and haven’t felt bored once watching it. I’m truly starting to understand the hype around this anime.

Rate so far: 5/5

Predictions:
Surprisingly, I got two predictions right and one half right, last time.
We all might want to start getting the tinfoil hats ready and start looking for a nice cave to hide in, if I get more right. I hardly ever get plot predictions right, so there’ll have to be something seriously wrong with the universe, for that to happen.
Anyway, ignoring that worrying thought, here my new predictions:

Human Transmutation Predictions
-The city where central is, will turn out to be a giant Transmutation circle and everyone who live there will be human sacrifices.

– The creature made when preforming human transmutation, is actually that shadow thing/God called Truth, in Homunculus form. Truth is obviously a reflection of the person traveling through the portal, therefore the Homunculus produced will also reflect them. (Pretty sure at this point, that human transmutation doesn’t make anything human).

-As Ed has just open the portal and travelled through, this also means he’ll have made his own Homunculus (it’ll be a grumpy little Homunculus).

thumbnail_2b5f5f70-ea5d-4730-9b17-05af8ae3fa81Father of The Homunculus (Papa Humpy) Predictions
-Ed’s and Al’s father, is also father of the Homunculus or is somehow related to him. From the glimpses we get of Papa Humpy, he looks ridiculously similar to Ed’s and Al’s father.

-Papa Humpy is also not human, but is some type of unholy demon, super Homunculus or other being.

-Papa Humpy will take Al captive and use him a bargaining tool, to get Ed to do his bidding

Character Predictions 
-Ling Yao’s backstory is a little too close, to the backstory of the evil guy from frozen. Therefore, I predict he will eventually turn evil. Ling seems to want the Philosopher’s Stone as much, as evil the guy in frozen wanted to be king. So, I really think he’d be willing to turn evil to get it.

-Scar, Ed, Al and the people from Xing, will all come together to make the ultimate Homunculus fighting force.

-Selim Bradley is giving me the pure creeps (getting a real Damien Omen vibe from that kid), so I predict he’ll follow in his adoptive father’s footsteps and become a sociopathic psychopath, too.

– Colonel Mustang, will be the one who kills King Bradley in the end.

– And the next characters to die will be, Lieutenant Riza Hawkeye, Ling Yao’s or Scar. Also, I definitely think Colonel Mustang isn’t making it to the end of this anime alive.

Also, I still stand be the following predictions made in part 1:
-Ed is not human, but is some other type of being that’s not yet been introduced to the plot. (Possibly the same as Papa Humpy)

– Scar will turn out, to not be as bad as he’s currently looking. Or will have some type of weird epiphany and want to help Ed and Alphonse.

– Ed’s and Alphonse’s Father, I foresee as being a Tywin Lannister type character or his absence was to protect his sons, in some way.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Part One)

thumbnail_c299d47c-f538-4f70-88a4-3114eb1a231eI’ve decided to try something a little different with anime series reviews. Instead of choosing a few that seem good, I’m going to review series that I haven’t seen before, but don’t stop hearing about. As you’ve probably already figured out, I’m starting this off with Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. Mainly because there’s quite a few anime Youtuber, that don’t shut up about this series and that’s as good of place as any to start in my eyes. This series is rather long, so I’m going to follow Netflix lead and review it in parts. The first part being episodes 1-13 and now that’s out of the way, on with the review.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood begins with the two Elric brothers (Edward and Alphonse) teaching themselves alchemy, after their nowhere-to-be-found father abandons them and their mother. Sadly, life wasn’t content with only giving them a forever-absent father and decided their mother had to die too. Now motherless, the boys are left all alone in the world (I guess father dearest is too busy, to check in on his own children and just left them fending for themselves).

Luckily, a kind old lady takes the boys in and treats them like they were her own grandchildren. However, this doesn’t fix the huge gaping bleeding hole in the boys’ hearts, left by the death of their mother. Hearts torn to bits, the boys try to use their gift of alchemy, to bring their dead mother back. As this is taboo, it goes horribly wrong and leads to Edward losing an arm and leg and Alphonse losing his whole body and later having his soul bonded to a suit of armour by his brother. Now the Elric brothers face a new challenge and must search for the Philosopher’s Stone, in order to restore their bodies.

I’m not going to lie to you, the first 5 episodes of this anime are brutally sad. Not only did the horror I described above happen, but a little girl was also Frankensteined with her dog, by her father (fathers sure are twisted in the alchemy world). Then they were both murdered, shortly after. These first few episodes are depressing as fudge and are nearly enough to make you want to stop watching. However, this series pretty much sucks you in from the get go, with its likeable characters and great story telling. So, as depressing as it is, you really want to keep watching to see what happens to the Elric brothers and get answers to its growing mysteries. The good news is, after episode 5 it lightens up a bit and isn’t as gloomy and even has the odd funny moments.

thumbnail_9f4c51f9-efd8-4735-b47a-af1847c01e07I could bang on all day, about how great Fullmetal Alchemist is and how it makes you, create a place in your heart for poor little Ed and not so little Alphonse, but I’m trying to keep reviews short. So, I’ll mention one more enjoyable aspect before concluding, which is its fun animation style. For the most its style is what you’d expect from this type of anime, but what makes its so entertaining is how it changes in comical moments. It turns into this funny, extremely 2D style, where Alphonse basically looks like a giant grey ghost and Ed has a huge circular bald head. This just makes everything seem so much funnier and really gives this anime the lift it needs, to prevent it becoming too heavy.

There’s not really anything I could find wrong with this series so far, but its early days and I mightn’t be saying that come part 3 or 4. Therefore overall, I would say, part 1 was great and I can really see why people like this anime so much (sort of regretting not watching it sooner, now). The first few episodes are really heavy and a bit depressing, but when you make to through those, it turns out to be an exciting and interesting watch.

Rating so far: 5/5

My Predictions:
Here’s the fun part for people that have already seen Fullmetal Alchemist. The part where I try to predict what’s going to happen and you get to laugh at how wrong I am. I’m treating this anime with Game of Thrones level of suspicion, so my predictions might be a little on the wild side. Anyway, here they are:

-Ed is not human, but is some other type of being that’s not yet been introduced to the plot.

– King Bradley, I think wants to create an even greater army super soldiers or gain eternal life. I predict he’ll do so, by either stealing the Philosopher’s Stone from Ed (if Ed ever obtains one) or by using Ed to as a catalyst or an ingredient to make one.

-Colonel Roy Mustang, I think wants to destroy King Bradley because of some bad blood between the two and not just for power. But, I predict he’ll die doing so. (They’ve been trying a little too hard to make his character likeable, for them not to eventually kill him off)

-I guess, Scar will turn out, to not be as bad as he’s currently looking. Or will have some type of weird epiphany and want to help Ed and Alphonse.

-The group with the Ouroboros tattoos, I predict are in cahoots with King Bradley. But, will most likely double-cross him, once they get what they want. I’m also leaning towards Ed being the same species as them or at least part (He’s got an Ouroboros symbol on his coat, for Glob sake).

-Greed’s gang, I think will become Ed’s and Alphonse’s ally, in order to get the Philosopher’s Stone and gain eternal life.

– Ed’s and Alphonse’s Father, I foresee as being a Tywin Lannister type character or his absence was to protect his sons, in some way.

-On my next to die list, is Izumi Curtis or the 2nd Lieutenant Jean Havoc (they purposely drew attention to him, when introducing Roy’s little crew and now I’m suspicious to why. I’m guessing, either death is coming for him or he’ll turn out to be kick ass. Maybe both. He also looks like Baldroy from Black Butler). Either way, I really hope they don’t kill off Armstrong. I love that sparkly He-man.

-And my huge shot in the dark, is that Ed himself is the Philosopher’s Stone or something crazy like self-belief is.