Acquiring the research, the Elric brothers discover something disturbing about the Philosopher’s Stone.
What They Say:
The Elrics discover the horrific ingredient needed to create a Philosopher’s Stone. When night falls, they prowl the grounds of a secret laboratory in search of more facts – but the brothers find only danger.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Moving right along, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood takes us out of the bright and sunny world of Resembool and lands the brothers in the big city where they’re going to the archives. With the repairs on the automail done and Al back up to speed and able to walk on his own, they’re able to get back on track for finding the research they need to create a Stone. The change to this city is pretty stark compared to what we had in the last episode since that was all beautiful countryside with lots of blue and green. Here, we get the stark interiors and dark nights to take in.
Following up on their lead from Dr. Marcoh, the brothers head to the first branch to get the books that Marcoh had written. Unfortunately, events caused that section to burn down and nothings left, which leaves the pair pretty dejected. They do have a big ray of hope though as they meet a young woman named Sheska who claims she can help. With her photographic memory, she can recreate any book she’s ever read, word for word, without any problem. It just takes five days for her to write up all these massive books and to think that it took her too long. She’s a very cute young woman that’s brought into the series with a friendly smile, shy ways but an amazing ability.
With the books in hand, Ed and Al begin to work on deciphering them which takes a good deal of time as they come across as cookbooks that have layers and layers of code to be deciphered before you can figure out how to make a Philosopher’s Stone. It’s an interesting piece of the puzzle that shows them working hard at something that doesn’t involve using alchemy itself, just their brains and deductive abilities. Of course, they learn a secret that really shocks and surprises them and opens up the next path of exploration which is only just beginning by the end of this episode. The setup is nicely done here which paints certain parties in a poor light and has the brothers becoming the ones who may expose it.
We do get a bit more of a follow-up in this episode with what’s happening with Scar, but not all that much as he’s still skulking about underneath East City. After the fight he was in and the damage caused, he’s laying low and recovering and hoping that others think he’s dead. The twist to it is that Lust and Gluttony are flitting about as well and she’s intent on having Gluttony hunt him down and consume him before he interferes with their plans. Gluttony continues to creep me out a fair bit so seeing him moving about the shadows and underground doesn’t make me sleep any easier.
Similar to the previous episode, this one is a bit of a transitional piece as it’s laying the foundation for more revelations and moving things forward. It’s not a huge leap but it’s putting the pieces in the right place and tying it together in small ways. The brothers come across well here as they show the kind of dedication it takes to do what they’re doing but they also have some light and fun moments, particularly when Ed ends up paying Sheska for her work without realizing the value of what he’s given her. Or maybe he does and he’s paying her for the value of the job he had her do. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood had some good moments in this episode but it does feel a bit slower overall like the last one. Of course, that’s only until the very end here when things heat up. For the next episode, of course.
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Sony PlayStation3 Blu-ray player via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.