In the fifty-sixth episode of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, NO, COULD YOU NOT, MAKE IT STOP. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch FMA:B.
Oh my god, y’all.
- I just had a thought that I’m going to share. This show has been exhausting in the best way imaginable this week, but I imagine that it must be an entirely different experience if you get to binge watch it. Like… the episodes are only 20+ minutes long! You can knock out a good portion of this show in a single sitting! So what’s this show like if you get to watch it in only two or three sessions? I’m guessing it physically hurts.
- Actually, having to watch it in real time is probably worse.
- Basically, this show causes literal pain.
- How many times has Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood shocked me with the cold open? A desert, a lizard, a lone man wandering the dunes. What the fuck is Hohenheim doing? Who the hell is he talking to? When is this taking place? Why is he talking about being unable to stop someone or something? Is this from the future??? Who is Sergeance???
- NO IT’S POST-XERXES HOHENHEIM.
- Hohenheim’s telling us why Father isn’t going to have an easy time winning
- OH MY FUCKING GOD
- HOHENHEIM HAS BEEN ABLE TO IDENTIFY AND CONVERSE WITH THE MORE THAN HALF A MILLION SOULS WITHIN HIS BODY
- Do you realize what this means??? So much of Fullmetal Alchemist explores the inherent value of life, no matter what form it comes in, and Hohenheim is showing us how he’s done that. It’s not even like he chose to become who he is currently, and he still honors the lives within him.
- Those lives have AGENCY. STILL. Hohenheim gives them the chance to LITERALLY DESTROY FATHER’S BODY. He names them. He knows their identities, he knows their lives, and they matter.
- This is so incredible and so meaningful to watch, y’all!
- what is that
- WHAT IS THAT THING!!!!!!
- NO, WHAT THE FUCK, THAT’S WHAT THE DWARF IN THE FLASK LOOKS LIKE NOW????
- MAKE IT STOP
- MAKE IT GO AWAY.
- And while you’re at it, make Führer Bradley go away, too. Please???
- Well, okay, let me back up. I am so intrigued by how complex the writers of this show and the manga have made this situation, and I appreciate that they inherently respect the audience. Bradley’s return is visually upsetting, of course, and as we watch him murder Briggs solders in seconds, apparently without any effort on his part at all, I couldn’t help but despair about the fate of everyone in Central. Y’all: HE TOOK OUT A TANK BY HIMSELF. I’m going to worry about who is going to survive! I just am!
- (BUCCANEER, I SWEAR, YOU CAN’T DIE. YOU JUST CAN’T.)
- (I CAN’T THINK OF A MORE DEVASTATING IMAGE IN THIS EPISODE THAN OF LT. FALMAN CRYING AND REFUSING TO GIVE HIS GROUND.)
- But that’s not all I had to worry about. I can’t guess how Bradley is going to try and assume control of the military again! Obviously, he can use his rank to overpower others, but the folks in the radio station make a good point: Now that that force has aligned with Bradley, can he just outright execute them?
- Wait, of course he could. HE’S BRADLEY. If he can hide his Homunculus child in plain sight, he can develop a narrative to paint all the rebels as traitors.
- The one variable that I see in this mess is Mrs. Bradley. I think that it’s only a matter of time before someone tells her who Führer Bradley really is, and when she learns the truth, she’s going to flip the fuck out. Hopefully on air? At least people would be inclined to believe her… right?
- Gah, I don’t know how to solve this!
- I KNOW! HOW ABOUT GREED COMING BACK.
- YES YES YES.
- Given all the stories we’ve seen based around revenge and anger, I love that while Greed’s path is similar only in theme, it’s completely different in execution. PLUS, HOLY FIGHT SCENES, THIS IS SO GREAT.
- Well, “great” meaning “entertaining.” Not all of it qualifies as “great” because this is a bloody, chaotic mess. I can’t ignore the fact that countless Central soldiers are dying, unaware of the master they serve. That makes me sad because they have no idea what’s really playing out before them. That’s why I think the rebels will have to expose Führer Bradley as a Homunculus if they’re ever going to gain the advantage. No one will choose a bunch of rebels over the nation’s celebrated and heroic leader, who managed to survive an assassination attempt, and is now returning to the city to reclaim his power and his wife. It’s all about the story he’s crafting, which is why I like that Greed is here to specifically disrupt that. It’s not like he’s here to do good. His specific interest in this fight is simply to be antagonistic to Bradley, to destroy him.
- Of course, that is easier said than done. It’s almost like Bradley is stronger than ever, and he quickly gains the upper hand against Greed in this fight. Meanwhile, he’s chopped off Buccaneer’s automail arm and sent his sword through his body.
- Buccaneer, no. 🙁
- So it’s left to Falman to take control of what little Briggs forces remain. He’s able to keep the Central forces at bay with the two machine guns at the top of the stairs, but how long can this last? Not only are they outnumbered, but there are still Mannequin Soldiers who could come above ground at any time. What if they get out???
- AND THEN WE’RE GIVEN ONE LAST SURPRISE AT THE END OF THE EPISODE: FU. FU HAS RETURNED FOR LING, AND THEN HE GETS HIS OWN REVENGE NARRATIVE, AND THIS IS JUST SO INCREDIBLE, Y’ALL. Oh my god, I had totally forgotten that Bradley had cut off Lan Fan’s arm. THIS IS GONNA BE SO GOOD. How??? How is this all going to be resolved in just eight more episodes?
- I’m going to have to deal with the fact that this show is almost over, aren’t I? I’ll choose to remain in denial instead. THAT’S HEALTHY.
Mark Links Stuff
– If you would like to support this website and keep Mark Does Stuff running, I’ve put up a detailed post explaining how you can!
– Please check out the MarkDoesStuff.com. All Mark Watches videos for past shows/season are now archived there!
– I will be traveling for many events! Check the Tour Dates/Appearances page for up-to-date tour events.