Mark Watches ‘Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood’: Episode 9

In the ninth episode of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Al despairs over a horrible possibility of his own existence. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch FMA:B.

You know, this show has really done a lot in nine episodes.

  • Seriously! There have been so many mind-melting flashbacks and plot twists, and I don’t even feel like I’ve gotten to the meat of the story yet. Which is kind of terrifying, because if this show is already this tormenting now, it’s only going to get monumentally worse.
  • Still, there’s character development here that isn’t based solely on the ever-expanding mythology of the show. “Created Feelings” opens with Maria scolding Ed for acting so recklessly and selfishly in the previous episode. It’s a point that had to be made! How differently would things have turned out if Ed had waited for Armstrong, Ross, or Brosh to come along with him? What if he could have been granted access by someone in the government? Instead, he rushed into that place, left his brother outside, and complicated issues even more.
  • It’s nice that Ed doesn’t react poorly, either! He accepts that he made a mistake, and I’m hoping he’ll learn from it. He already did once when he was fighting the Slicer.
  • And her role here is great. She’s not just here to support Ed on some sort of character transformation. I’ve appreciated that the writers have made her an integral part of the story and a character in her own right. We get to see her internally express guilt over leaving out that screw, but she instead chooses to sweep it under the rug once Ed is eager to blame himself. It’s been fascinating see the dynamic between these two characters because Winry often acts like she’s a mother figure to Ed. (Which is utterly intriguing once you think about Ed’s past.) She cares about him fiercely, and her brisk tone is her way of trying to show Ed that she wants the best from him. It’s why she’s so peeved by the reveal that Ed and Al have needed guards. She told Ed to take things easily, and then he’s off fighting again. Truthfully, I think she’s terrified of losing Ed and Al. She already did once (technically), and I’m sure she’s got abandonment issues after her parents died.
  • In that vein, I think that’s why I enjoyed all the time spent with the Hughes family. Winry was reluctant to spent time at Lt. Col. Hughes house, but she comes to find the family to be accepting and caring, and it’s something that she misses. Obviously, she loves Pinako, but with Ed and Al gone, she doesn’t get to experience what it’s like to have a large family anymore. She latches on to Elicia in particular, and I wonder if Winry always wanted a little sister.
  • Don’t mind me, that’s my heart breaking.
  • Wait, not quite yet. Because then Alphonse finally erupts at Ed and admits what he’s been struggling with, and it’s so much more awful than I could have ever expected because ED’S SECRET WAS THAT HE WAS TERRIFIED AL HATED HIM FOR WHAT HAPPENED TO HIS BODY. OH. OH, SO IT’S LITERALLY THE WORST THING IMAGINABLE.
  • I can’t say I ever fought with my twin brother, but I understood that the Elric brothers found comfort in sparring with one another. It was familiar and cathartic, and it allowed them to reflect on the many memories they shared with one another, memories that couldn’t be fake. I love that the script so directly addresses the idea that sometimes, there are things we need to say aloud. Actions can’t always speak louder than words.
  • OH MY GOD, WHAT IS HAPPENING WITH SCAR. He’s alive, he’s with Ishvalan refugees, who saved him, and THE TATTOO. WHAT IS THAT TATTOO? What does it mean??? Why is it so important to him?
  • Goddamn the cliffhangers on this show.

The video commission for this episode is now archived in my store for just $0.99! You can purchase the entire show at once for only $49.99 for 64 videos!

I’m writing this review on July 24th, since I’m always about a week ahead of schedule. Today, on the 24th, I’ll begin writing all my posts in advance of my European tour, so this will be where I temporarily suspend double features. I have no idea how long it’s going to take me to write three weeks’ worth of posts, but if I have the time, I will get more of these done before tour and while on the road. The episodes aren’t terribly long, so I hope to keep this going in some way. Your best bet is to check the site at the end of the day, or to follow me on Twitter, where I’ll announce new reviews as I get to them! Thanks for understanding.

Mark Links Stuff

– I have redesigned! Check out this post explaining the new changes, which includes the start of a permanent archive of all Mark Watches videos!
The Mark Does Stuff Summer Tour is happening soon! Check out the posted dates, suggest new ones, help bring me to YOUR TOWN.
– I have been nominated for a Hugo in the Fan Writer category! If you’d like more information or to direct friends/family to vote for me, I have a very informational post about what I do that you can pass along and link folks to!
- Mark Reads Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is now published and available for purchase! It’s available in ebook AND physical book format, and you can also get a discount for buying the ENTIRE SET of digital books: $25 for 7 BOOKS!!!
- Video commissions are open, and you can commission a Mark Reads/Watches video for just $25!

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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