I still read my fair share of blogs and forums, so I had something of an inkling that this episode of Brotherhood was going to be quite special, but even still, I loved it to pieces, and once the credits were finally rolling, all I could think is that this was the exact moment that Brotherhood finally stepped out from its predecessor’s shadow and became great anime in it’s own right.
Ah, it’s been a long road. Between the die-hard fans of the manga and lovers of the first series, Brotherhood was always going to face a long and hard battle to win over new admirers, but now there is absolutely no excuse to not be watching this series. I won’t accept it. Episode 19 was perfect.
Shounen anime always works best when the plot pairs itself down to the most basic of premises. This episode can be easily described as just a straight up fight between the homunculus Lust and the Flame Alchemist Roy Mustang; it’s that straight forward, everything else rests on how much the anime staff are willing to sacrifice to bring the action to life, and since this is Studio Bones, it was always going to be good. Waves of flame flow like the ocean, bright sparks and the clang of steel claws, the sheer weirdness of what we’re seeing, someone being burnt to a crisp and regenerating time and time again.
I say it’s great anime for those reasons. The movement, the music and the action were so good, and because, by and large, I don’t watch anime for plots or characters. For those things, I read books. What I love about anime is watching something like this spark into life. The movement itself is a joy, the use of music and sound, that is anime. If for every dozen of cheap, generic series we can have something like this, it will always be worth being a fan.