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  • Purgatory
  • Joined Feb 9, 2011
  • 21 / M

STORY: Alright, alright.... So Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood follows the original Manga more closely than it's predecessor, Fullmetal Alchemist. I'll introduce you to the so called "story". Ed and Al are brothers who lives with their mother, Trisha in a small village of Risembool. Trisha dies of a strange disease and Ed and Al try to bring her back to life by using a magic called Alchemy, in doing so Ed loses an arm and a leg and Al loses his whole body. Ed and Al set out to look for the Philosopher stone that is said to break the rules of Alchemy. There is also some military business and something about Homunculus but for the life of me I can't pay attention to it. And thus the "journey" begins. So FMA Brotherhood... I keep on reminding myself of how good the first series is. You see, where as the first FMA was a fantastic fantasy world, Brotherhood fails to pull me in or build up on any atmosphere or charm. Without atmosphere it's very hard to be sucked into the story, but that isn't to say the story is not good, the story is very good! The story has a ton of twists and turns with a lot going on but there is no charm which makes all the events just seem bland. Sure it may of not needed charm if it weren't for the fact that the story has an absurd amount of comic relief, maybe the comic relief was supposed to be charming however the comic relief is so misplace and awkward it kills any atmosphere the story was trying to build up upon. The drama is also very weak, it actually is more soap opera like than the first series, barely any of the moments manage to squeeze a single tear from my eyes. It's that weak. Moments that brought tears to my eyes in the first series are just a side note in Brotherhood. It is also worth noting that Brotherhood absolutely does not feel like an adventure but more like a series of events, so much happens in a single episode that all the episodes just seem to run together. This is alright if you are heavily into action but it really gets in the way of any heartwarming or tear jerking moments. One more thing I think I should talk about is the symbolism and Philosophy, The symbolism in Brotherhood is barely noticeable, but even if it was why should I care about it if the show doesn't even let me into it's world? If I was sucked into the world then I would care, then I would say "THIS IS BRILLIANT!" The philosophy has an entirely different problem. Brotherhood has many different themes like, "Friendship (Yu-gi-oh)", "Revenge (Naruto)" and some old Greek philosophies. This is all well and good but it's hard to take it seriously when there is some silly comic relief taking place only a few moments after "Za Meaning of Life". All in all the story does seem like it has a lot to offer but the bad pacing, comic relief and overall lack of tone and atmosphere brings it down. All it needed is some better direction. 5/10


ANIMATION: The animation is actually pretty decent, I can't tell how they did the animation however the world of Brotherhood lacks color, this is a huge problem for a fantasy title. The only time the animation looks good is when an action scene is going on, Brotherhood has some of the best looking fight scenes I have ever seen but this is also a problem because it looks like the animation gets a sudden boost in quality as soon as someone enters looking like s/he is about kick some ass. Overall the animation is mostly lack luster only saving the extravagance for the action scenes. 5/10

MUSIC: Oh god the music! OH GAWD! Don't get me wrong, some of the music is incredible but the way they use it is so wrong. Barely does the music support any scenes often using some of the most bland songs from the soundtrack to make the scenes dreadful to watch. Add that to the already bland animation and the end result comes off as dreadful. This is too bad because I've listened to the soundtrack and the songs aren't really that bad, the soundtrack could of easily made up for the bland animation but... I'm starting to wonder if the director really cared about this series. 4/10

CHARACTERS: At least the characters are decent! At least! You got Ed and Al who's relationship is downplayed from the first to make room for it's large cast members. Yes, this is a series with loads and loads of characters. Does it handle it well?.... To a certain extent, yes! All the characters get their moment to shine and they are all well developed HOWEVER one thing that makes me want to bitch slap the writers into another dimension is their over used comedy gags. How am I supposed to take their emotional side seriously if they just crack a joke right after some dark and brooding moment? How am I supposed to take the fights seriously if they just randomly go into their chibi-form right in the middle of a fight scene? They did this is the first series a lot too but it wasn't shoved in your face (well... not as much) as in Brotherhood. Overall the characters could of been very good but if it weren't for their quirky side being shoved down my throat it would've been so much better. 6/10

OVERALL: I hear so many people calling this a masterpiece but It's too flawed on so many basic levels to even be called good. It's an average anime. This is really too bad since I loved the first anime so much. Do yourself a favor and read the manga instead, don't let bad art, bad pacing and terrible music do the job for you. I give Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood a 4/10


Brotherhood also gets an award or being the most overrated anime of all time (currently the third highest rated anime on anime news network and ranked third on this site)

5/10 story
5/10 animation
4/10 sound
6/10 characters
4/10 overall

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Possiblydominator says...

FMA:B A wet dream for hard core shounen fans, not so much for story driven fans. I do agree with you on most of your points however. As I just started it today with a group of friends, I found myself constantly comparing it to FMA-1. And from what I saw, it was one of the most overrated animes in existance on the level of Hellsing: Ultimate for the same reasons. It appears people enjoy pure action over meaningful story, which is quite the dissapointment.

Mar 3, 2013
wanilya says...

Even though I find your review a bit harsh when it comes to scores, I must agree with the elements that you point out. I watched FMA before this show, and I was fascinated by the atmosphere of the serie. It gave me all kind of emotions, I cared so much for the characters and the plot was well twisted. I don't care about the fillers, I still felt like the elements/characters placed in the story were all really important to make the story goes on. There was no dead-end, everything was well wrapped-up.

As for Brotherhood, my thought through the whole serie was : «I only enjoy it this much because of my love of the character from the original serie, because it's really not that good. I'd never introduce FMA to someone with Brotherhood». The pace, the atmosphere, the twist of emotion is just not there... It's a good story with, like you said, a lot of things going on but, in the end, it doesn't feel half as epic as the first story. I'd also say that, ironically, the bond between the two brothers apears so much stronger and significant in the original serie, despite the title ''brotherhood'' given to the second...

In the end, I still wonder why Brotherhood is rated higher than the first.

Feb 20, 2013
sunshinechild67 says...

An opinion is an opinion...but your only complaints seem to be that it isn't similar to the first anime, and that it has too many comic relief scenes. Really? That makes it the most overrated series ever? The series (any series) should be reviewed on its own merits, not on how well you think it stands up to the other series or on how well it compares to other reviews of it.

Sep 30, 2012
flaze says...

I don't think this a completely fair review. It sounds very biased (but then again, a review wouldn't be a review without an opinion). I really think you are being a bit too harsh. Some of the humor may have been misplaced (esp the part about everyone calling him short), but giving it a 4 is ridiculous.

Jul 22, 2012
Calahan says...

Just gave up on this series after 3 episodes. The awfully misplaced comedy/chibi segments makes the whole thing unwatchable for me, and to the extent that it puts me off wanting to sit through even one more minute of it. (and seeing the exact same joke used ten times each episode didn't help either)

I will check out the original FMA at some point though to see if that is worthy of the high praise the FMA series generally receives, because FMA-B certainly wasn't from the brief sample I saw (it may have been brief, but it was enough to be put off). If the original impresses then I might return to this one at a later date, mainly to see how the endings differ (or so I've heard). But the original will have to be pretty damn good for me to stomach any more of some idiots idea of comedy timing.

Jun 23, 2012