A dog of the military, Edward Elric works tirelessly to find the legendary Philosopher’s Stone, which just might have the ability to return himself and his younger brother back to their original forms. But they’re by far not alone in their search and some would stop at nothing to silence any who find out the “truth.”
Just as in the first version of this series, the violence in this show is reasonably high. Characters get stabbed, cut, burned, etc. Although gore isn’t really an issue, it does push the limits of PG14. If high violence bothers you, this show isn’t for you.
Again, as with the first version, there’s reason for the PG14 rating. D-mns, and more than one instance of the “illegitimate-son” word.
A biiit more fanservice in this version than in the last, I’m afraid. Thankfully it only happens a few times. Winry is seen taking a bath in one scene (all details covered) and then beginning to undress in another. Nothing that breaks the TV14 rating, but it’s hardly necessary.
Another difference from the first series, this version addresses God more than once. A comment is made about touching God using alchemy (or something like that. It made no sense) and then about the obvious fact that Ed’s transmutation technique looks almost like he’s praying (thank you, Sherlock –I mean Ling. I never thought of that one). Near the end, the villain is delusional (what villain isn’t?) and says something to the extent of becoming a god. Typical villain stuff, really. But if this kind of comparison (which really doesn’t affect the story overall) makes you uncomfortable, you’ve been warned.
If you’re wondering what the deal is with this “first series” mentioned, Brotherhood is actually a re-boot of Fullmetal Alchemist that more closely follows its manga original. Far more closely. While the first few episodes remain much like the first series, around episode 12 or 13 it begins to branch off in a completely new direction and the ending couldn’t be more different if it tried.
As for the other aspects of the show, the music is decent (although not quite as inspired as the first series’) and the art is smooth. A big improvement, however, is the fighting. The incredible animation during fight scenes makes up for the lack of added detail in the general art. Also the story is much improved for following in the original tale’s footsteps. The characters are richer and there’s a great deal of development on their part. The plot makes more sense as well, although it’s also far more complex than the first series. All in all, if the violence isn’t an issue for you, this series is one that shouldn’t be missed. The comedy is wondrous, the action is spectacular and the characters are ones to root for all the way through.
Oh and don’t worry about needing a movie to wrap up the story. This series wraps up on its own.
Personal Rating: Young adult
Languages: Dub and sub
Official rating: TV14
Genre(s): Action, fantasy, adventure
Legal streaming: FUNimation‘s site and YouTube