Whilst on the train to Resembool to get Ed’s arm replaced, Major Armstrong comes across an old acquaintance who may know something about a Philosopher’s Stone.
This episode is the best example of the one problem that there is with the first part of the Brotherhood adaptation of Fullmetal Alchemist. The story is so rushed. It is like listening to a friend tell a story of something that happened to them while on holiday with you. They sketch through the details you already know, so that they can get to the new bits as quickly as possible.
There are two distinct stories in this episode, both rushed through.
The first half is about Dr Marcoh and the Philosopher’s Stone. We get a little bit of background on the elusive stone. First Marcoh has one, which he was given to study during the Ishvalan conflict. It’s imperfect, like the two we’ve seen previously and it has a limit as to how much it can be moved.
The fact that one can be manmade is the most interesting thing in this part. Once they return to Central and look through Marcoh’s notes. Ed may be talented enough to produce a complete stone, which possibly could allow the brothers to get their bodies back. The key will of course be, the truth hidden within the truth.
The second part of the episode deals with the Elric brothers return to their hometown of Resembool. It was all going so well until Winry sees what is left of Ed’s arm. We have a missed opportunity to see the boys in their home environment. By the time Al gets out of his box, it’s time to head back to Central.
It is left to Pinako to explain to Armstrong the background of the children. Winry’s parents were doctors that died during the Ishvalan conflict. The father of Ed and Al abandoned his children before their mother died, and never returned afterwards. Also, when Ed became a state alchemist they burned down their family home so that there was no turning back.
- Maes Hughes is there to say goodbye to the boys. Who are left in the (in)capable hands of Major Armstrong.
- Al is travelling cattle class on the train, along with some friendly sheep.
- Is there anything that hasn’t been passed down the Armstrong line for generations?
- Ed could have taken Dr Marcoh’s stone by force, but he felt that he was doing more good as a doctor.
- Lust has found Marcoh.
- Winry is a pretty good shot with that spanner, hitting Ed in the head.
- Good news, Ed’s growth isn’t stunted. The bad news, he is still a pip squeak.
- Armstrong goes topless again, twice.
- Has anyone noticed that Winry has as much of a temper as Ed.
- That ending with Al talking to Pinako and Winry. He’s the more mature brother.
Does Alex-Louis Armstrong really have the stomach to be a soldier? He cries at the slightest drop of a hanky. And those hugs…