It is a fact universally acknowledged that Edward Elric, titular hero of Fullmetal Alchemist, is hot. Not just a little bit hot. Not just glancingly hot, or fortuitously hot: Edward (middle name unknown) Elric is endlessly, eternally hot. All 170-whatever centimeters of him.
Everyone sees this.
What is less clear, unfortunately, is the hotness of one of him main rivals, the murderously badass Ishibal exile... known only to fandom by the somewhat unsexy name of "Scar." (Yes, Scar is an unsexy name... run any Google search and you'll find that the only other major cartoon character with that name is the evil scheming pretender of the Lion King, who is in fact a lion and who appears to be the anthropomorphic incarnation of Severus Snape, at least as far as physiognomy is concerned).
I think Scar is sexy. I think he is beautifully, hauntingly sexy. I think he is complicated and interesting and so, so hot. Because I think all of these things, I have decided to share a little primer on the evolution of Scar’s fashion-sense. Because, well. Because I can.
So, let us start from the beginning, why don’t we?
This is Scar when he was around Ed’s age (somewhere in the 12-16 range, I can’t really tell). This is the only time in his life he had regularly colored hair, although I think his hair is suspiciously grey even here. When compared to Edward he has a less ethereal look… not so much the Michelangelo's David; more of a Botticelli. His eyes and skin are striking, but when combined with his physique he looks rather like your average dust-covered little boy.
Looks, however, are something he can’t help. So let’s look at what he chooses to wear.
Honestly, I’m a bit at a loss to pinpoint the exact influence of this garb, although it is clearly a continental Asian look with a touch of Persian/Turkish charm. I suspect that he bought the brown shirt and cargo pants at Old Navy, however. Important to note is the long orange-and-black striped cloth that he has tied around his body, probably to hold that rucksack rag that he’s wearing in place. Although boys this age are usually pretty impatient and careless, it’s clear that this outfit has the methodical layering so typical of a traditional Ishibalite. There is not a whiff of rebellion in this garb.
This is what happens when he is a little bit older, and embroiled in the genocidal conflict that ends up causing him to be the bitter and vengeful man we later come to know and (in my case) love:
Ugh. My eyes! Scar is really hideous in these pictures, and not even in the “sexy ugly” way. Although he can’t be more then 22 years old, his hair is totally white. I have decided that his hair went white when he underwent the trauma of seeing his precious nii-san transformed from “intelligent, respectable older brother that I’m proud of” into insane alchemically-obsessed ressurectionist/necrophiliac who later becomes a bloody eunuch before his very eyes.
Looking at his clothing you can see that he’s still got the orange-stripy cloth and the rucksack rags. My suspicion is that the people of Ishibalite basically wear all of their clothes that they have ever owned for their entire life and only discard the things that really, honestly just don’t fit anymore. Somewhere along the line he’s acquired a nice army-green shirt that fits his bigger body, and he has darker cargo pants (suspiciously appearing to have a zipper around the knees so that they can be converted into shorts… these are the kind of pants my parents go absolutely crazy about as vacation-gear because they are OMG SO FUNCTIONAL). He also has boots. These are not sexy black Harley Davidson boots, like the kind that Edward wears… these appear to be barely holding on to life, completely exhausted shoes that were never intended to life the hard life their owner is brutally eking out of them.
Scar now has an accessory, the rifle. He appears to be handling it competently but it doesn’t really make him look that strong. Instead he looks exactly like what he is: a desperate and scared young adult who is completely out of his league and living in day-to-day trauma. Let’s not forget this.
This is the look of Scar when he first meets Ed, on the steps of the library. This is after he has THE ARM but before he knows what it is capable of doing. One can only guess at how he has been spending his life in the time since his brother died after acquiring that arm, wandering from place to place, living like a beggar and in complete fear of being found out for being an Ishibalite. Now he’s totally grown up, and is coming into his own in terms of hotness. His nose and jaw and eyes are just so nice.
The first thing to comment on is the fact that he’s still wearing that orange-stripy cloth. I am beginning to come to the conclusion that it is his Moses cloth, something that he has owned ever since he was a baby as a gift from his mom (who I am so totally sure died before he ever got a chance to know her). Not that Scar was rescued from the river in a basket of reeds, or whatever… I think his brother raised him… but it’s a little piece of memorabilia from his youth that’s nice to see that he’s still keeping track of.
This outfit is so Abercrombie & Fitch, it’s embarrassing. Doesn’t Scar realize that the whole sexy camping look is so 1990s? Some little details of his clothes, however, suggest a more modern and refined taste. The white shirt appears to be made of linen and is loose and flowy and probably very comfortable… but at the wrists and the waist it has these little slits that just scream casual-cool. Although the man appears to be congenitally unable to prefer anything but cargo pants, these are his most evolved and hottest cargo pants yet.
Accessory-wise, Scar has lost the rifle and now sports sunglasses. These are the Best Sunglasses Ever. I find it highly amusing that in this world of trains and pocketwatches and other retro bits of technology, Scar sports the most cutting edge sunglasses in existence. You just know that these babies have both UVA and UVB protection, and are probably polarized on top of everything else.
Now Scar is wearing actually sturdy boots. These appear made for mountain climbing or defeating lions in hand-to-hand combat. The SUVs of boots. I approve.
Last, and penultimately: Scar in his ultimate form. Terrorist.
Now, some people are put off by Scar because of the fact that he murders so many people. But his murder spree is completely discriminate and he acts like a man at war against a far more vast and terrible enemy. It is easy for us to see the military of Fullmetal Alchemist as being full of nice guys, because it is, but that doesn’t change the fact that the military represents a kind of totalitarian expansionistic imperialistic racist hegemony that begs to be destroyed.
But let's not go there! This is a fashion critique, not a ill-disguised screed against the excesses of my own country's foreign policy practices.
I think it is fairly obvious that Scar's clothes here are stolen. He's completely abandoned all elements of his Ishibal past (which was probably a considerable emotional sacrifice). The orange stripy cloth, in particular, is totally gone… I'm sure it went down in flames along with Scar's real name. (*sniffles over the angst for a moment, and then moves on*). Now he looks like some kind of badass rapper with those giant black and white sports pants (which are so totally made of nylon or some other synthetic material). The best thing is the yellow coat, which is just about three sizes too small (just like his grinchy heart, I suppose). Well, the coat and the Best Sunglasses Ever. I want him to just strip right now.
Okay, honestly people. I love Scar. I think he's just the neatest thing ever and I don't care if it appears that I am on crack when I say this. But if this little piece of… um… whatever… helps convince even one person
Credits for images:
The last picture is the small version of a wallpaper that I found here.
The Ed screenshot is something I gacked from fma_screencaps, probably from the many pictures uploaded by winter_ruins.
Sadly I do not remember where I got the Scar images, but as they are basically studio shots that are widely available online I am less concerned about crediting the source.
All images are hosted on my own website. Of course.