Fullmetal Alchemist: Comprehension, Deconstruction, Reconstruction

hisui_icon_4040 I recently had to take a Friday off of work after I had spent most of Thursday expelling the contents of the digestive system. That meant I spent a good deal of two days mostly lying in bed. While the experience was hardly pleasant it did give me a good deal of time where I needed to entertain myself passively as I recovered. This gave me a good chance to knock out a very vital title in my pile of shame.

A while back Kate and I were asked if we could get the other host of the Speakeasy to watch one show what would it be. Kate said that she would get me to finish Fullmetal Alchemist. Fullmetal Alchemist was an odd case in my library. I started watching the original TV series but then the overwhelming outcry was the original manga was better. (If this is true is a matter of contention I will touch on later in the post.) So I put the TV series on hold and started reading the manga. I played with the idea of watching Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood but I was already decently invested into buying the manga and I heard that while Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood only got really good when it got into new material as the first parts of the story were extremely rushed since they were in the 2003 TV series. The problem was that halfway through the Fort Briggs storyline I got outsourced at work and my pay was significantly cut. This meant that I stopped buying a lot of manga series and one of those titles was Fullmetal Alchemist. I always meant to finish off the series but I just never got around to it.

So Fullmetal Alchemist fell into this limbo where I had gotten fairly far into the story so there was a drive to finish off the series but starting over from the beginning was a bit of a pain in the ass. I’m definitely in that position with Nodame Cantabile. I was really hoping that someone would get the itch watch Fullmetal Alchemist and I could tag along with them but that never happened. So I was in limbo until I got sick. It seemed to be the perfect catalyst. It also worked really well since I was a little loopy during the episodes I watched on Friday but that was mostly when I watched the part of the story that I had experienced multiple times. By the time I was generally feeling better on Saturday I had caught up to where I was in the manga. I then just spent the next week finishing off the series.

Now a LOT of ink has been split on Fullmetal Alchemist. If you want a complex analysis of the themes, characters, and plot it is not too hard to find. I instead wanted to just go over five things I noticed since I watched all of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood in 2019. There are certain observations that are easier to make a full decade after the show premiered. Some might only be possible with that much distance. That is worth talking about thanks to perspective.
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Hugtto! PreCure: More is Less? Maybe?


Warning: Spoilers for Hugtto! PreCure

hisui_icon_4040_round Truth be told I’m actually going to try to keep spoilers about Hugtto! PreCure to a minimum. The thing is I’m going to be talking about the show as a whole including the ending so spoilers are inevitable but I will try to leave some details as vague as possible because I know the length of the PreCure franchise tends to ward off all but the hardcore. At the same time, the number of very strong PreCure entries has grown to the point where people are getting more interested in the series like they have with Gundam or Jojo’s. So I have a feeling more people are going to read this out of general curiosity than the number of people who have finished the series. For them, I want to leave some sense of discovery if this makes them seek out Hugtto!

Also leaving somethings deliberately vague is thematically appropriate for this article.

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Manga Predicted Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go

hisui_icon_4040_round If you are unaware of the works of Kazuma Kamachi I will lay down a quick primer on his series. His most famous work is A Certain Magical Index and the tagline of the series is “When Magic and Science collide, the story begins…” It is set in a world where magic exists in the shadows as a secret hidden away from the mundane majority. Think of a set up like that of Harry Potter or Mage: The Ascension. At the same time, the center of scientific learning is Academy City. It is such an advanced hub of research and development that the city is often several years ahead of the curve in technological advances as compared to the rest of the world. While the residents of Academy City have no access to magic they have instead cultivated psionics to an art form. The main characters, the physic Touma Kamijou and the magical Index Librorum Prohibitorum, are the bridge between these two worlds.

As the series went on the psionic side character Mikoto Misaka became insanely popular and got her own spin-off series, A Certain Scientific Railgun. As the name implies the series almost entirely deals with the science side of Academy City and the various machinations and misadventures of the super-sensory inhabitants within.

But the clairvoyant skills might not just be limited to the characters within the book. Kazuma Kamachi himself might actually be an esper. It turns out that he predicted Pokémon Go years before it came out. Just look at the craze around the fictional app introduced in chapter 72 of A Certain Scientific Railgun. It is worth noting that the chapter came out on October 27 of 2014, but Pokémon Go was just released July 6, 2016.

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