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Poll: How would you rate this anime?

Dec 24, 2010 9:25 AM

Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 2484
Spotlight Anime: Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

MAL Anime Information Page: Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

MAL Score â 9.18 (by 36296 users)
Ranked - #1
Popularity - #20

For the next week I would like to have a discussion about the anime that focuses on the key elements that we here on MAL use to critically rate an anime: Animation, Sound, Characters, Story, and Enjoyment.

I would like everyone to approach this thread as if you were going to write a review and structure your initial post like this:

Animation - insert rating
Sound - insert rating
Characters - insert rating
Story - insert rating
Enjoyment - insert rating

Animation - discuss any pros and cons of the animation styling used in the series, try to include some specifics.

Sound - describe any of the things you liked or didn't care for in regards to the music and sound effects used in the series


If you are having trouble writing up a review or coming up with specific pros and cons, please don't worry. Just do the best you can with it and if you can only write two or three sentences about any of the 5 elements then that's OK. Not everyone here is currently at a level which will allow them to articulate their thoughts and opinions.

After your initial post is made you can feel free to civilly discuss issues of contention. I am sure there will be many opinions expressed here that some of us will disagree upon and criticise and it is for that reason that this entire club exists. So I hope everyone has fun and I am really looking forward to watching this discussion unfold.


Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood was NOT inducted into the club Anime list:
31 Yes - 57.4%
23 No - 42.5%

24 Don't know this anime - 28.5% of the total number polled
6 Abstained - 7.1% of the total number polled
Modified by Orion1, Jun 8, 2014 1:56 PM
You do not beg the sun for mercy.
Dec 24, 2010 3:51 PM

Joined: May 2010
Posts: 7603
I've only seen 26 episodes and I hope it gets better because I resent it a bit for taking away the top honors reserved only for Legend of the Galactic Heroes.
Even when I was in crowd, I was always alone
Dec 24, 2010 4:12 PM

Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 514
Probably the greatest anime adaption I've seen and vastly superior to the manga.
Dec 24, 2010 10:45 PM

Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 508
Confucius said:
I've only seen 26 episodes and I hope it gets better because I resent it a bit for taking away the top honors reserved only for Legend of the Galactic Heroes.

I think we need a little more objectivity here.
Dec 24, 2010 10:54 PM

Joined: May 2010
Posts: 7603
You are right, I know my vote won't count for spotlight, but I am just going to assume Edward isn't very different from the other FMA. Alphonse is still very annoying?

But are we just going to let it in because it was a good manga adaption? Certainly there have been other great and faithful adaptions, but that shouldn't mean 100% guaranteed induction.
Modified by Confucius, Dec 24, 2010 10:58 PM
Even when I was in crowd, I was always alone
Dec 25, 2010 5:36 AM

Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 8827
First point: I don't read manga. Therefore I don't care if this is a good or bad adaptation, because it's a different media. It's consequently unrelated. And it should not be the base of voting.


So far it's pretty entertaining, but so was the original series. I have to compare them, because the original gave me a great moment of epiphany and seemed better constructed than this one (which has much more confused ideas and sometimes seems to wander around lost, without knowing how to solve its own problems) If I don't finish it in time I'll have to abstain, simply because I need to compare the ending.

The ending will be the definite trigger for a yes or a no. Why? Because so far the series is exemplary, except for an art error I found on episode 28 that freaked me out. But so was the original. They are equal in terms of art, sound, characters and.... Maybe... Plot. As I said, this one's plot is not as well tought, but ok, maybe it was all planned for a great ending! If the ending is not as good, ie. if I don't vote 10 for this in the end (which I greatly doubt) I'll vote no. Because if the original is not in, this one does not deserve to be in as well.
Waratte Oemashou Sore ha Chiisana Inori
Dec 25, 2010 9:08 AM

Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 499
FMA:Bothrthood may have a better plot, but I consider it weaker in terms of storytelling. The way comedy and drama is mixed makes it easy to lose the rhythm of the story, which can result in feeling entirely detached from the characters and the plot.

I will either vote no or abstain.
"The moment one sits down to think, one becomes all nose, or all forehead, or something horrid. Look at the successful men in any of the learned professions. How perfectly hideous they are! Except, of course, in the Church. But then in the Church they don't think. A bishop keeps on saying at the age of eighty what he was told to say when he was a boy of eighteen, and as a natural consequence he always looks absolutely delightful."
Dec 25, 2010 6:13 PM

Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 514
The original anime was shit. Just horrid, horrid shit.
One of the worst adaptions ever made, a God damn atrocity and an insult to the manga.

Also, what the fuck are you people on about? The fact that it's a great adaption is every bit as valid a criteria to induct something as any other reason.
Dec 26, 2010 11:37 AM

Joined: May 2010
Posts: 7603
AfterGlow said:
The original anime was shit. Just horrid, horrid shit.
One of the worst adaptions ever made, a God damn atrocity and an insult to the manga.

The soundtracks were better than BrotherHood.

Also, what the fuck are you people on about? The fact that it's a great adaption is every bit as valid a criteria to induct something as any other reason.


Due to the rule changed, FMA manga is not inducted, so we shall see how good those words are. Then again, I've only completed at most 1/4 of the series.
Even when I was in crowd, I was always alone
Dec 29, 2010 3:54 PM

Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 8827

The End = No Epiphany = 8/10 = No Vote

I love being this basic :3
Waratte Oemashou Sore ha Chiisana Inori
Dec 29, 2010 5:08 PM

Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 1014
The first anime wasn't without its problems, but I can't help but prefer it. I thought the first half of Brotherhood was pretty strong and then just went to hell in a handbasket as it fell into nearly every shounen pitfall imaginable culminating in the reduction of the entire show to a 1 on 1 fistfight between the protagonist and the bad guy while all the other characters are there to witness and cheer.

Very dumb and to me it threw every positive thing that came before out the window.

It really bothers me that I have to vote no on this, because as far as shounen fighters go, I think the alchemy aspect of the show is original enough to warrant me recommending this series to people, however I think I would only recommend this show to people who haven't seen many other shounen or who actually just love the tropes.

Personally, I was thoroughly disgusted by the last half dozen episodes and I think this series played no small part in my dwindling interest in anime and abandonment of shounen shows in particular.
Dec 31, 2010 9:59 AM

Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 728
No-one is really going to attempt to say much about this are they? It's too momentous in a way.

Compared to the original, this one has better animation by far. But the original had good animation for it's time. So, 10/10 compared to 9/10. Soundtrack I think is actually pretty even, both have some nice stuff. However, as the remake is a lot more atmospheric I don't think it is noticed as much. OP/ED's, I have to say I like the Originals more, though both have some nice stuff. Characters?-- yeah next, Story. The Originals story was more forced, but didn't have such a reticent flow that the remake has. I would say the Original had a much lighter feel to it. As it was so forced, and stuff didn't make sense in its context, I prefer the remakes story.

But, I don't think comparison to the original should weigh this anime down. It's a different product. We are not about to compare it to LotGH are we. [well you get my point]

I would say you don't need sound or subtitles for this show. You can watch it and know exactly what is happening just with the picture.
I don't know whether I like this or not.

I felt it was competent, but ultimately, I'd rather see the manga inducted. I just don't feel right voting yes for something that doesn't make me feel much for it at all.

There's something missing somehow... and I get this feeling with one other anime too, which is Hellsing Ultimate...
Jan 2, 2011 5:20 PM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 112
Animation - 8
Sound - 6
Characters - 7
Story - 8
Enjoyment - 9
all in all - 8

i watched the first series of FMA at least 4 times through, Brotherhood (BH) twice.

ANIMATION - the "quality" of animation in BH was fairly superior. they put more effort, time and money on it. they used better techniques, the coloring was very nicely done, the movements were far better, the shadows, the perspectives and pretty much everything...
except for "style"! i dare say the style they choose was very unfitting. shiny colors, bright polished skins and faces and so on. such style does fit an anime like Soul Eater rather good, but not FMA.
the style of the first series was exactly what FMA needed, "a master's touch" you could say - dull non shiny colors, sometimes with weak fading shadows, which gave a sad impression to the whole thing.

SOUND - it's funny that after all these years the weakest joint of every japanese anime is it's sound effects! movements, background voice, sometime characters' voices... . with some rather simple and easy work they would've made this series more enjoyable in all ways. FMA 1 was really good in terms of background "music", way better than BH. but in other aspects they were the same.
the japanese voice actors were better this time - the english voices were better in the first series.

CHARACTERS - such a rich story needs obviously many characters and of course at least a handful main ones. in the first series this was taken care of in a good way, the important characters were easily distinguishable, the way that one would easily remember them even after years. be it their physical appearance, their mentality or simply their position.
in BH it's a little too crowded. everywhere the brothers go and whatever they do, a bunch of guys just get involved with the story, now you can't just have them in the story out of the blue and with no roots. so the story has to spend some time explaining a little about each one of these characters. with limited numbers of episodes this makes the viewer loose the main line.
the obvious example was the very main character, Edward. his role in FMA 1, his aura and his character were really great, you could see an adult who's still a child and understand him and accept him that way. in BH he just appears as a child. he's no hero anymore, he's just good enough!
the worst part is, as it seems to have become a tradition in anime, the ending, where pretty much "every single" big and small character should be seen and get involved, just in the last arc (i was shocked when that didn't in gintama)! that like half of the homunculus die in only one last arc or that a lot of important things happen make these appearances just more confusing and illogical.

STORY - the first series was truly and thoroughly a great work, in terms of the story and how this story is being told, the characters and in general the whole atmosphere of the anime.
the strength of the whole story lies in the simple fact that the main idea is easily understandable and so near: we have 2 young brothers, who've lost their mother, while their father is gone. they're ready to do whatever they can to bring her back, be it breaking taboos (a resolve that anyone would come to).
now taking advantage of this strong point would only seem natural, as it's been done in the first series very nicely. the very good timed flash backs, the memories and the order these are being shown make the viewer to feel empathy with these rather fragile naive boys, like the simply perfect mother, hate that irresponsible father, despise that Tucker guy (who made a chimera out of his daughter) and so on. at the same time their powers, their guts and their devotion makes you like them even more. especially that a good taste of humor is mixed in. the problem with the first series was obviously that it was created too soon. so it didn't take too long before the story went ballistic! non matching characters, unneeded action and a rather weak added-story with an especially weak ending.
in BH the flow of the story was steady and good, for it followed the manga. the later characters were better matched together and to the story, there was more logic to the story, the actions, the scenes and the plot were nice and smooth. but this time they went too far in some other aspects. too much humor for a rather serious story, unclear history of some characters, especially the brothers and again a rather weak ending. there were fewer meaningful flash backs, the story didn't seemed really continuous and they were times that some main characters wouldn't show up for several episodes.

ENJOYMENT - FMA BH was indeed an enjoyable anime, one that every one should watch, but still it's not good enough to stop one from watching FMA 1. strong story, great animation quality, good characters and a production of high quality are enough to please any viewer. it would leave the viewer with great memories, that will remain with them for a long time.
as a friend once said, FMA tastes damn good!
Jan 9, 2011 8:13 AM

Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 4367
Edward winning in a fistfight makes this an obvious 'no' for me. It's one of the worst endings and the foremost example of a great story totally falling apart at the end.

At the end of the day, what should have been a 10 out of 10 fell to being on par with it's 'poorly adapted' predecessor. Overall, I think I enjoyed the first series more because it was more consistent.
Aug 25, 2011 3:05 PM

Joined: May 2010
Posts: 7603
Okay I just finished this today and here is what I have say

Story? Okay, it does feel like it had potential, but ultimately fell into the pits of dumb dumb dumb. It keeps getting more and more ridiculous

Animation was okay, it wasn't great or woahing. The quality was about the same as the first anime.

The sound score sucked. I liked the first opening song, but afterwards it was just *skips intro*. The OST was dull and I honestly could not remember a single track.

BlackMagic said:
The first anime wasn't without its problems, but I can't help but prefer it.

Same for me. I liked the first one because there was still alchemy and the whole "equivalent exchange" thing.

One of the things that bugged me was Edward. His only alchemic skill is transforming his arm into a blade and morphing the ground or something and he usually needs Al or someone to back him up.

I gave this 7/10 at the end because I did watch it through adn through.
Modified by Confucius, Aug 25, 2011 3:10 PM
Even when I was in crowd, I was always alone
Aug 26, 2011 3:40 AM

Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 1494
I also just finished this series. I was actually one of the nay sayers who was turned after making it through the beginning. I'm not sure how you can say confucius that the animation was even comparable to original. The animation in Brotherhood is clearly superior, and yes mostly because of advancements in 3D graphics and computers. I didn't have the same problems with the equivalent exchange divergence. The movie and the end of the manga/ first version pretty much explained the flaws existing in the idea of equivalent exchange, which lacked many vectors to be considered an absolute law of nature/alchemy.

Edwards lack of alchemic prowess for much of the series did bug me until the ending when he was able to do something every other alchemist had failed at, a successful human transmutation. There were also other moments where fullmetal was able to use his mind to overcome the strengths of the Homunculi and ultimately defeat father. I thought Brotherhood's shounen power up element was done much better than lets say Gurenn Lagann. Brotherhood did a better job at creating the feeling of friendship and overcoming the absolute disparity that the first series embodied. I personally like both series and their differences.

I actually finished the series as it was being released in the states. Something I do with very few series, so the lag between each release and the time it took me to finish the series does play a role here, considering I thought Brotherhood ended very well. There are some moments in the middle that did feel a little too power up oriented, but this series did a great job of changing pace through telling the story through others eyes instead focusing too heavily on Edward and Al. We really get to know Mustang and the other characters better than in the first series. It's hard saying that Brotherhood is the superior work, but if broken down by all it's elements, I think Brotherhood does come out on top. The opening and endings did seem a little too Jpoppy at times but there were some very nice ones too. I would have to look deeper into each of them to tell which ones I liked and disliked.

Story: 8/10
Art: 7/10
Animation: 9/10
Music: 6/10
Voice acting: 8/10
Overall: 8/10
Aug 26, 2011 6:23 AM

Joined: May 2010
Posts: 7603
For me, I thought the balance for the main characters (Al and Ed)' development and the supporting characters made it weak. I felt little (if at all) any attachment to the Elric brothers in Brotherhood than I had in the first anime.
Even when I was in crowd, I was always alone