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JBrowne's Review for Fullmetal Alchemist

Review posted by JBrowne on April 4, 2007 at 2:03 PM.
This review applies to Entire Series Subbed.
Total Score: 24/30 (80%). Story: 9/10 (90%), Animation: 8/10 (80%), and Sound: 7/10 (70%).


      I agree with Chris that this anime is very good, and it is in my top 5 dvd collections. It is themed around the 7 deadly sins, and I've heard from many of my friends that have seen the entire series that they never picked up on the theme of the series, just the strangeness of the naming aka the glutton that eats people. (shouldn't be a spoiler) Also, you can tell that Square-Enix was involved in the series because of the crisp animation and the modern feel to the anime.



      Some very emotional parts actually made my wife cry while watching the series. One thing that really bugged me though was how the transmutation circles were abused to allow for characters to have magic-like abilities. The circles would be drawn or etched onto gloves, part of a pendant, tattoos, and the usage of the transmutation was stretched pretty bad from time to time like alchemy making plants move around as if sentient beings. The only people who had any sense of realism (for what it's worth) to their alchemy are Ed and Al. Don't let this disuade you from the series though, it is very impressive, and has superb character development.



      I think the attention to the lighting is what made the anime feel so life-like. The realism to the light sources, the flicker of a candle affecting the objects around it, the angle of the sun affecting the light shining through the windows of a house. The rain was very detailed, and the way it affected the characters and environment added that extra little flair. All in all, the animation was very clean, and the frequent use of computer-aided effects never became tiresome.



      I watched a few dozen episodes of the dubbed version on Adult Swim, but I have the subbed boxset. I'll be honest, I couldn't stand the dubbed voices for most of the characters, but that's because I watched the original subtitled version first. As with any anime, I will always say that the sound in the subbed version is always better. The animations are timed for the japanese voice actors and when you translate it and try to make it emotional they tend to make it vaudevillian, (yes that is a real word) have you tried screaming in pain into a microphone and made it sound realistic? The subbed version of the anime I would rate as an 8 for sound, but the dubbed version tained my score making it a 7.


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