I am exceedingly underwhelmed.
I've been waiting for the Ed-Hohenheim reunion since episode THREE and... this is it??
I recognize the need for an episode that is atleast partially lighthearted. If the entire audience went off and committed suicide from the angst overload there wouldn't be anyone left alive to buy the dvds.
The reunion with Izumi was about ten thousand times more emotionally charged and she was teacher. This is their FATHER. And that's it? Ed punches him in the face and Al has a talk with him inside a tent and then he's gone again?
In the previous episodes I felt absolutely certain that something big was going down in Rizenbul. With Winry and Scheizka, Hohenheim, Ed and Al, Ross and Broche, Mustang-tachi, plus a military force headed by General Hakuro, and probably the homunculus ALL about to converge at Rizenbul-- I was so sure something big was going to happen.
I mean, okay, the episode really wasn't all bad. It had it's good points.
But I was really invested in seeing that Ed-Hohenheim reunion scene. And I didn't get what I wanted and I'm pouting a little. I'll get over it. And if I don't, I'll write fic.
Let me talk about Hohenheim for a minute. >_< I'm not sure how I feel about the anime's decision to make him-- well, if not good, then significantly less evil than his manga counterpart. It seems to me that the anime is making him one of the "good guys," so to speak. With all his "how sad"s and "I'm sorry"s and his mournful, regretful, nostalgic expressions obviously they're trying to provoke sympathy for him.
To which I say: no fricking way. He's sorry? GOOD. He SHOULD BE. Because he's a DEADBEAT DAD. He abandoned his wife and children! And I'm sure that this is caused in part by my own issues, but Hohenheim will *never* get *any* sympathy from me. Period. It's just not in me.
Whereas, in the manga, I find his character fascinating because he's, you know, EVIL. An evil guy who abandons his family to go forth and do evil stuff? That's interesting. I don't have to expect him to conform to any sort of moral standard because he's EVIL. A guy who is NOT evil and abandons his family anyway just makes me go like this: >_< HIT HIM AGAIN ED!!!
I acknowledge and accept my issues. That doesn't change the fact that I dislike Hohenheim. Also, he was hitting on my Maria. That makes me angry.
So, yes. Underwhelmed with Hohenheim and underwhelmed with the episode as a whole.
Of the good: Ed hauling Mustang down by his collar to growl at him with about three inches between their faces. Mmm. And then Ed's frantic screams as Al falls into the river-- oh man, my heart caught in my throat for him. And then Ed calling him an idiot and jumping in to drag him out... Ed loves his brother so much. And Al's little gasp of happiness sitting on the river bank was so cute. I can't wait til he's restored. And then when they finally found out about Hughes.... Oh, my poor boys. Oh Ed.
Also, Ed is so pretty with his hair down. So, so pretty. ::sigh::
The Lyla = Dante plot twist? I kinda figured. Which is strange, because I am almost always caught completely off guard by the plot twists. It's weird to have figured one out in advance. Although I want to know what the heck she's doing with Rose! Run away, Rose! Run away!
I must say, I am continually impressed by the absolute *tightness* of the plot. Characters introduced as one-offs (a la Yoki, Lyla, Tucker, Barry, and Rose) are brought back later on to play vital roles. And if an important character is going to be introduced later on, they're seemlessly woven into the background of the series until when we finally meet them it's like we already know them. A la Kimberly, Archer, Izumi, and Hakuro. I'm still holding out for Psiren's comeback.