Now I really did like 49, but this is by far one of the best episodes in quite a while. It just had some very good direction. It adapted the happenings of the manga very nicely, rearranging placement of some scenes to make it better. And it had a lot of GREAT music, several tracks of which have not previosuly been heard. The sound direction was also suberb; the tracks started just at the right time, and overlapped transitions between scenes very nicely. Even the old tracks were very nice hearing again, it's been awhile since you last heard them (even "that" track was good hearing). Animation looked a bit weird at times but was for the most part really good.
(As expected, the subtitles lowered the impression a bit, there were some half-lame lines here and there that didn't quite seem to fit the mood that I'd built up from the first view. But never mind. It was my own fault for watching the raw first.)
My favourite scenes:
- I sooo love the zombies. I don't care if they're a "plot staller" for Ed and co, they're awesome. At least here in the anime, when "come alive". I love the creepy and disturbing scene in the laboratory, where they devour that officer, and later on the terrified scientist. It DID feel very Resident Evily
The blood, the screams, the freakeyness <33 The dramatic music didn't exactly make it worse, either. Could always have been gorier though >:D
- I adore the Oliver scenes in tnis episode. The music piece that plays when she first makes entrance is glorious. Starts out very intense and sorta melodramatic, then the strings turn a little creepy. Love it.
Sloth makes an appearance and reduces Olivier's gutsy hostage to a blood stain on the floor. And I was shocked, is that some of his squashed organs sticking up amongst the rubble? Or was that supposed to be a hand?
The subsequent fight against Sloth is nice, albeit some weird animation on Olivier's part at times. I like the way Alex comes to the rescue. Seriously, the music in this episode is fantastic.
- Ed and friends fighting off hordes of hungry dolls is pretty good. Lemme say first that the initial shot of Ed staring intently at the doors must be the sexiest one of him so far in the series. Yes, I just said that. Ed, sexy. Ahem. Moving on. The following scenes were really intense. Ed sealing themselves up in the hall together with the hundreds of zombies, along with the DOOM music playing (which is really effective here, and it hasn't been used in a while I think), gave me goosebumps. It really felt as he was sealing their own fates down there. Yikes. I was a little suprised by the evidently green blood of the zombies though, looked sorta weird.
- Envy. This part was so much more awesome than it was in the manga. Mei pwning the zombies was funny and cool at the same time, among the creepiness of it all. Envy getting eaten by a zombie was a welcome addition by BONES. I just imagined how scary it'd be for Mei, with her only companion down there seemingly getting killed, leaving her all alone with those things. But then. Epic, crazy shít happens (and Mei would have been screwed unless it had). I love that they use "Envy revealed" (or a remixed version of it) while this goes down. And I must say, Envy's VA really performed well here, and the animation was great. I love his deranged laughter and the faces he make. (Only complaint would be that Envy's true form is way too clean, it's not slimy and nasty enough. But that's just the design Brotherhood has gone with, and not in any way related to this particular scene.)
- And finally, we have Alphonse and his epic moment of epicness. It was great. Al had some really cool shots of him where the animation was just excellent, and Heinkel didn't look too bad in the close-ups either. I love the music that's playing here, the intrumental version of the "Ishbal-Marcoh-Philospher Stone" track. And the ending kicking in was just pure win, when Al steps out of the cloud. I am SO glad that they changed OP ad ED for this, Shunkan Sentimental would have been nowhere near as good as this.
(Wow, this was a pretty huge post