Fullmetal Alchemist - Episode 11 Review

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Episode 11, "The Other Elric Brothers (Part 1)"

*Cue "Thus Spoke Zarathustra"*"And don't come back until you agree to sign our Elricest doujins!"

Synopsis: The Elric brothers travel to the town of Xenotime, where research is being done on the Philosopher's Stone to replenish the gold supply. However, they find that two brothers are claiming to be them. They sneak into the mansion where the fake Elrics work and confront them, but are driven out. Later, they confront them again, and the younger brother stands up against the older one, but the guards arrive again.

Super Tringham Bros.Midget miss!

Comments:

This and the next episode are adaptations of Makoto Inoue's light novel, Sareki no Daichi (translated by Viz as "The Land of Sand"), from 2003. In it, Edward and Alphonse find themselves in the mining town of Xenotime, where they encounter fake Elric brothers, Russell and Fletcher Tringham. I haven't read this book. I've only read a brief synopsis. I'm not sure whether it was intended to be part of the manga canon or not, because it also features the mysterious "red water" which becomes a big plot element of the first anime series, but the book came out before these episodes.

The old "imposter" trope is used in these episodes, with two alchemist brothers doing research under the names of Edward and Alphonse Elric and causing the real brothers trouble when they show up and nobody believes them. But they didn't go the whole "evil clone" route and have Russell and Fletcher do all sorts of bad things to ruin Ed and Al's reputations, they just make them look like liars to the townsfolk, which annoys Edward, who doesn't like dishonesty and easily holds grudges.

I kind of like the idea of the Tringham brothers, especially that the older one is so much taller than Edward and the two of them both assumed Alphonse was the older one when they saw them, since Ed is so short. As usual, that hit Edward's nerves, but what I liked the most was the resulting interaction and fight. It's good to see Ed mix it up with an opponent who also knows alchemy and isn't so bad at it, either. Sure, Psiren was pretty good, too, but I like Ed taking on his imposter, who also seems to have a father that was a great alchemist. They're very similar characters.

We don't see much of this Mugear character who the Tringham's are working for, but we know from the first time we see him that he has a connection to Lust.

Swashbuckling action!"Mom's home! Clean up the Kool-Aid!"

Overall Score:

4 out of 5