Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood - Episode 62 Review

Episode 62, "A Fierce Counterattack"

FINAL FLASH!"You SURE he's dead?"

*****SPOILERS*****

Synopsis: Father creates more Philosopher's Stone by taking the souls of soldiers, but Hohenheim, Alphonse, Izumi, and May arrive to stop him. Father distracts the group by creating humans with the souls of the people inside of him, and then unleashes an enormous energy blast that a late Edward also gets caught in. Meanwhile, Greed recruits a group to go fight Father, including Roy, Riza, Alex, and Ranfan. Olivier finds out from Scar that Bradley was already mortally wounded when he fought him, thanks to Buccaneer. When the dust clears from Father's blast, it appears Alphonse has shielded May at the cost of massive damage and Hohenheim shielded Izumi and Edward. The Briggs soldiers attack Father and Roy and the others arrive to join them. Eventually Father starts to lose control of "God" inside of him and requires more Philosopher's Stone again. He staggers towards a wounded Edward, but Alphonse decides to use Rentanjutsu and sacrifice himself to restore Edward's arm. At the Doors of Truth, Alphonse's soul and body unite and the Truth loses Ed's arm. Edward's arm restored, he attacks Father on his own, with everyone cheering him on.

"Give daddy a hug!""I can't see right now, but this is totally awesome, right?"

Comments:

This was a very exciting, eventful episode, that adapted all of chapter 107 of the manga and added some great flourishes here and there. Of course, if they had adapted the past few chapters a little better, with more accurate pacing, this episode might not have been as exciting, so it's a double-edged sword.

Speaking of mixed emotions, I know I said this last time, but it bares repeating. Father has the power of "God" in him, but he uses it so poorly! Jeez! What happened to sinking into the ground? What about going into walls or something? Why not fuse people together with alchemy? He should be able to fart and cause earthquakes, sneeze and summon tidal waves. If he wants more Philosopher's Stone, why not just reactivate the nationwide array? All the blood seals are still in place, he just needs to activate the Gates in the human sacrifices, who are all, by the way, right there. It's like he hasn't even tried! He relies on DBZ power blasts and his forcefield. Is this all this guy's got? It's pretty pathetic when fights against his children had more variety. Father is a fuckwit.

That said, the offense against him is pretty amazing. Unlike in the manga, there was a lot more to it, with Izumi and Alex both engaging in close combat with Father, and Roy creating a huge force of fire. I especially like when they made a huge "oven".There was some pretty damn good animation in this battle, too. It would have been nice to see Hohenheim do more, but I guess he was too damaged. That sort of bothered me, though. What's with all these "huge blast, smoke clears, everyone's bloodied but otherwise fine" bits? Didn't that happen already? Still, plenty of creativity was put into everyone's attack on Father, even if Father himself is devoid of inspiration.

The real emotional core of the episode was towards the end when Alphonse sacrifices himself to restore Edward's arm. I'm reminded of a similar act in the first series, to bring Edward back from beyond the Gate. This was no less emotional, with Alphonse's soul and body becoming one again and being seemingly lost to the Gate to restore Ed's ability to fight. The first time I watched the episode, I wondered why Alphonse, who had two perfectly good arms to perform alchemy, didn't just do what Ed did when he got his arm back, using alchemy to continue damaging Father, but somebody pointed out that Al's armor had been cracked close to the blood seal and he was probably going to go soon anyway, so he took the chance to give his brother his arm back. I guess that makes sense.

The problem is, why did nobody else help? At the end, everybody is just standing around yelling, but most of them are probably in good enough shape to help out. It's not like Edward and Father were in a one-on-one duel! Why is everybody so fucking unhelpful?

Greed's ultimate motivation turned out to be. Turns out, he just wanted friends. Just friends. Yeah, it was that simple. He just wanted some good friends. Totally not a cop-out that makes me violently ill at all! At least he helped in fighting Father, somewhat.

Still, it's hard to beat this level of action, and Al's sacrifice was well done. This is one of the best episodes in a few weeks, and one of the best in the series. I just wish Father actually did something with his abilities. The guy seems like a crazy drug fiend now, looking for his Stone fix.

Two more episodes left, and the fight ends next!

"Woah... I totally never noticed those ribbon things!";_;

Overall Score: 4.5 out of 5

 

 

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