Minor but basically irrelevant spoiler warning...Except the character section which is paragraph 5...do not read that if you do not want to literally have it ruined for you. But if you cbf any of it it's 10/10 overall in my very unprofessional opinion.
Ok so to be honest, this is the second review I have written for this anime. However I deleted the old one because I realised how susceptible I am to viewing something I just finished enjoying through a filtered lens and did not give as honest a review as I would have liked to. From the start I will say that regardless of
the re-write my rating is still 10. However it will not be as hard of a 10 it will be worth more because without the filtered lens I still view this as a masterpiece unlike many others which usually lose value in my eyes when I start to look deeper.
Let me say that in any other circumstance I would probably have given this a 9/10 for story. Even with the very...I struggle to find the word...um...issues with the final arc (Anyone who has watched the anime will know what I am referring to but do not let it differ you if you have not). The only reason I would drop the story to a 8/10 is because honestly it just does not start up as strong as the 2003 anime. And though I do not want to judge them the same, it simply is that we saw what it could have started as and if both combined the best aspects of each other I think story wise it could have come out as a true masterpiece. I can not drop it any lower than a 8/10 though because as far as story goes it is still a cut above the rest. Mainly due to the many intricacies of the plot that tie in so very well. With such weight placed on philosophy and the value of a soul everything feels like it has weight beyond the lives and world of those in the anime. I would like to note that putting story for 8/10 only occurred due to me trying very hard not to rate it higher as I truly do believe it to be great however I can not ignore the issues that came about.
Art was good for the time. I appreciate the lack of fan service being shoved in your face and the detail put into transmutations. The art style though appearing simple is actually one of my favourites and though it may be partly due to bias on that it could influence the rating. Objectively however I think the we'll say dusty style of art suits the old setting of the anime. 8.5/10 The mark being less than 9 is me trying to slightly dull the bias.
Sound was overall great honestly great. I remember the sound tracks being very classical but suiting the themes of the show and whatever setting they were played in well. Unfortunately I don't really pay attention to OST's most of the time. The openings and endings however were exemplary. I can say without a doubt that the second opening for good reason and how they used it will always sit in my heart fondly. All of the openings and endings however are great, foreshadowing most of the time is very creative, seen most in the first opening (I realise this is less about sound now but I usually judge sound like this due to lack of anything else I recall to judge when watching anime). Now I'll be honest, in most case I am way too impatient to sit through endings to anime (bar some exceptions). But in the case of FMAB I feel as if I have cheated myself to not let them run as they are some of the greatest you will hear and have the pleasure of viewing in my opinion. 8/10
Characters show continuous growth throughout the series. What can I say? Ok look there will be more SPOILERS for this one so prolly stop and just accept you should watch it if you haven't. If you don't care. Keeping reading. The series manages to fit a good deal of character development in for not being long running. Before I go into the good I must critique what they could have done better. Which falls into the first third of the series. Maes Hugh's needed more time for the viewers to care like in 2003 just as the Shou Tucker ARC needed that extra episode. I feel like Lust could have been done better but at the same time I am less effected by her treatment as I think however way she was dealt justice was done to her character in different ways. I want to first acknowledge Mustang overcoming the loss of a friend. Because to me that is what stuck out most in his character. Beyond him trying to become Fuhrer by moving up the ranks, and beyond being a guardian of sorts for the Elrics I think the most interesting part of his character was watching him trying to follow through with these self appointed obligations whilst trying to deal with the losses that life had dealt him. Eventually this became too much as he exploded on Envy in the end where his constant bursts of fire represented his uncontrollable rage. Who better to take it out on than Envy who is one of the biggest reasons for Mustangs pain? I think this is why he is a fan favourite. That and he makes f***ing fiery explosions by snapping his god damn fingers. I think Ed and Al Both place blame on themselves for each others fate and it was beautiful to see them go on in hopes to find salvation for themselves but more importantly each other. Ed feeling like he needs to bring Al back to his own body regardless of cost and Al regardless of the literally hollow shell of who he was is ready to and did give his life in order to save his brother. Only for Ed to give up what he believed would save them both to save his brother (Alchemy if you didn't guess). I could cover a lot more but I think I've made my point. 10/10 for character.
Enjoyment...seriously I mean look this may be a re-write but I still love the anime. Like the enjoyment section is where I am basically obligated to be bias in my results like come on. 10/10
Side note if you have any wish to discuss philosophy and psychology blah blah blah based on anything you might find in FMAB, some other anime or just for the hell of it, be sure to message me because I love that shit. Have a good one.