A few weeks ago, I started pondering to myself.
Pondering how to keep new ideas for blog posts coming. Pondering what I should do when, due to a busy schedule or something else, I don’t have a solid art piece or in-depth article ready for a weekly post.
And then I remembered Doug Walker’s Avatar: The Last Airbender vlogs.
For over a month and a half, Doug Walker, one of my favorite internet movie critics, has been catching up on the Avatar series and discussing what he enjoys and dislikes about each episode. I began watching Avatar along with Doug for as long as I could before I inevitably fell far behind his vlogs and gave up.
This got me to thinking about another TV series that I had started watching years ago yet completely neglected to finish.
The name of said TV series? Fullmetal Alchemist.
I know, I know, I must be a heretic for snubbing one of the great anime classics. Allow me to put things in perspective before everybody grabs their torches and pitchforks.
When the original Fullmetal Alchemist anime started airing in the United States, I was a middle schooler stuck in rural Nebraska. I didn’t have ready access to cable or Dish, and Funimation was far from releasing episodes online at that point in time. Needless to say, my chances to view any quality anime were limited. I don’t know how many episodes I managed to see, but they weren’t many.
Then 2010 came along and threw a new obstacle between me and FMA 2003: Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. Critics and fans everywhere couldn’t stop gushing about Brotherhood, praising it for being a faithful adaptation of the manga and being a new anime great. So I did what any anime fan would do: start watching it on Netflix and promptly ask for the DVD sets for Christmas.
Loving Brotherhood as much as I did, I wasn’t very keen on returning to the first adaptation and seeing all the changes that it made. However, people such as Hope Chapman (AKA JesuOtaku) still proclaim this to be their favorite of the two series and say that it still holds up as a standalone show.
That’s why I’ve finally decided to go back and give this anime another look.
I’m going to take a look at each episode of Fullmetal Alchemist and do a sort of commentary on it, discussing what works and what doesn’t. Comparing and contrasting FMA 2003 and Brotherhood at certain points will be inevitable, but I won’t blow off plot elements for not staying true to the manga. Needless to say, spoilers for both series will abound, so watch yourself if you are in the remaining one percent that has no idea what happens in either of them.
I intend to write one episode post per week, and I already have a bit of a head start, having taken notes on the first two episodes. I hope that you will come along for the ride. I have a feeling it’s going to be a doozy!
Now to give this miniseries a name that reeks of dignity and doesn’t totally suck.
Fullmetal Alchemist © Hiromu Arakawa, Studio Bones, and Funimation Entertainment
Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series created by LittleKuriboh