Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood - Episode 13 ENGLISH DUB Review

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Episode 13, "Beasts of Dublith"

"I'm so hard right now!"

 *****SPOILERS*****

Synopsis: Despite her understanding, Izumi expells Edward and Alphonse for their going against her teachings, but they return to ask for her help. Meanwhile, Roy Mustang prepares to transfer to Central by calling together his subordinates. Scar recovers from his injuries at an Ishbalan refugee camp, where disgraced Lt. Yoki tries to have him taken by thugs for a reward, but Scar fights back. In Dublith, a group of chimera lure Alphonse to them, then subdue him for their boss, a homunculi named Greed. In their hideout, Greed offers to teach Alphonse how to make a homuculi in returns for information on how to attach a soul to something. Edward comes into the hideout refusing to make an exchange of information, and he and Greed battle. Greed uses his ability to harden his body to fight, but Edward figures out the key to it, and the battle comes to a draw. Suddenly, Izumi steps into the hideout, immediately subduing Greed.

Comments:

I really, really hate this episode. I mean, it's my least favorite episode of Brotherhood. And really, not because the content itself is bad, but because it totally blows through a lot of really great material and oversimplifies it. The Dublith/Greed arc is one of my favorite parts of the FMA manga and the first series, and Brotherhood just does not do it justice, as largely evident in this episode. Even Greed and his gang look ridiculously balloonish and awkward.

To be honest, though, the dub of this episode was better than I expected. It's actually a solidly dubbed episode. The script flows well, the voice acting is fairly good, and I really thought that this part was just a big improvement from the dub of the original series portion of this. I wasn't blown away, but I was happily surprised.

For one, my biggest concern was with the voice of Greed. In the Japanese version of the first series, Junichi Suwabe gave the character a deep, jaunty, colorful and boastful tone, but it could sound both very friendly and very intimidating at the same time. In the English dub, Chris Patton was casted in the role, and he was just not as colorful. He sounded like your average "cocky guy" character. In Brotherhood, the Japanese voice of Greed was changed from Suwabe is Yuuichi Nakamura, who did (and does) very much what Suwabe did with the role. Chris Patton was again casted as Greed, and I was concerned he again fail to live up to the liveliness of the Japanese voices. And the reason why it concerned me so much? Because Greed is my favorite character.

Fortunately, Patton's Greed has improved somewhat. It's not as cool as Suwabe's or Nakamura's, but it suits the character without making him seem generic. It's a tuned up version of Patton's original performance in the role. Knowing that Patton does have some talent, I was glad he was bringing it out, and starting to do the character a little justice.

Greed's gang was a little better this time around, too. Even Tiffany Grant, who I'm not a huge fan of, gives a better performance as Martel. It's too bad none of these characters will be around much longer.

Maxey Whitehead's Alphonse is pretty amazing. In one scene, I could have sworn I was listening to Aaron Dismuke's Alphonse, but the truth is, what has really happened is that she's achieved what Dismuke had, she's become the voice of Alphonse Elric in English. Not because she was cast as the role, but because that voice has become the voice of the character, trandscending the superficial to become naturally that character.

Oddly enough, though, Travis Willingham's Roy Mustang was a bit weak in this episode, after having made so many strides in the past handful of episodes. And Vic Mignogna's Edward was a little off in his ranting scream, too. Scar's new voice just sounds too whispery and not very powerful at all.

Anyway, a fairly well dubbed episode.

Overall Score: 3.5 out of 5