Finishing FMAB: Episode 59

Almost there! After almost a decade of slowly moving through the series, and starting with the franchise well before that, I’ve almost made my way to the end of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. You, the Beneath the Tangles community, helped me choose this series to complete, and I’ve given a few updates as I’ve made my way toward the end. I talk a little more about that journey in my concluding post in a week or two, but for now, here are my thoughts on the craziness of episode 59!

What Went Down

  • On the verge of death, Hawkeye tries to get Mustang to understand a plan she’s developed just through look, which of course he does, leading to the gold-tooth doctor’s capture. However, the arrival of a wounded King Bradley and a deteriorating Selim keeps the group from advancing, and the two homunculi quickly capture Mustang and force him to do human transmutation on the doctor; Mustang is taken to father quickly thereafter and Selim follows. Scar creates a hole below them, leading to the father, and fights King Bradley.
  • Alphonse talks to his body while standing before the gate. He has an opportunity, now, to receive his body back, but chooses to stay in the armor for now, though, deciding that his real body is too weak to fight. After making the decision, the body wonders if that choice will lead to the world’s destruction.
  • As Izumi and Edward try to revive Al, Mustang arrives. Edward wonders how he could have done human transmutation without losing anything, when he realizes that Mustang has lost his sight, rendering him ineffective for combat. Mei also arrives, falling through the hole Scar created above the group.

Observations

  • I’ve mentioned before that the manga is harsher in tone than the series, but in this episode, we get a powerful and painful moment (actually another I should say after a recent death)—Mustang losing his sight is a pretty rough one to endure.
  • Alphonse is exactly who I want my son to be. Really. REALLY. Such a good kid…
  • I keep trying to weigh the strength of all these characters. Scar was maybe a notch or two below Bradley at full strength…so maybe he should be able to beat Bradley now without any too much resistance? I know that’s too much to ask…
  • Again, more good writing—five sacrifices add up when just a couple of episodes ago, I wondered who the five would be, knowing only the Elrics for certain.

Questions

  • Why are the homunculi falling apart? Are their weakened bodies due to father’s plan?
  • Is Mustang’s blindness permanent? That’s one way of taking an over-powered character and bringing him down to a more moderate level.

We’re on the final stretch! The next time I post, it’ll be my concluding thoughts on the series. Please feel free to comment below but please, no spoilers!!

 

2 thoughts on “Finishing FMAB: Episode 59

  1. As far as I remember, Bradley and Selim are the only two homunculi who are “falling apart” and its not due to Father’s plan, they’ve simply stated to hit their physical limit. With Bradley, he received many critical hits at the rampart area, with the worst one being the shoulder wound; since he is a bit different from the other Homonculi (human turned Hom. not simply created) I think his body has less regenerative powers than the more regular ones, but thats just speculation. With Selim, he was also given a pretty good beating in that forest/dirt area, so his body is starting to fail.

    In regards to Mustang, I think the answer is self-evident; when Ed and Al performed human transmutation, they suffered a permanent change to themselves and “lost” something. Izumi too “lost” some of her insides forever, so its safe to say that what Mustang lost was his eyesight, and it’s as permanent as any of the other prices paid for human transmutation.

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    1. Thanks for the responses—I wondered about Selim and Bradley because they’re both so strong, and despite being in tough battles, I didn’t think their wounds would be enough to cause such a reaction. Though if that’s the answer, I’m happy about it, because I hate it when good guys die or otherwise pour all their power into a fight and it ends up for naught—there was reason for sacrifice here.

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