The Elric brothers arrive in the mining town of Xenotime and begin their search of the town for the Philosopher’s Stone. There is a shout in the distance: a little girl is trapped under a steel beam, at the entrance to some mines. Miners, including her dad, can’t free her, but Ed manages it, via Alchemy.
The townspeople thank Ed and his “father” (Al) for helping the girl.
The front door of the house that they’re in opens and “Uncle Belsio-” enters. Alicia (the trapped girl) is thrilled to see him but her father is not; he all but throws Belsio out of the house, for “almost getting her killed… she’s not allowed to help you with your work, ever again!!”. Before he goes, he leaves a basket of lemons. Alicia, with a dry cough, seems sick.
Alicia admitted that she did whatever she did so that the lemon farms could grow back and she could taste her dad’s famous Lemon Pies. This sounds like some kind of Alchemy. A townsperson thinks that it (prosperity) will happen once they finish creating a Philosopher’s Stone… and the brothers were “obviously there to help Mr. Mugear with his research”.
They tell the people their names….
… and are promptly thrown out of the house.
This seems to happen to them a lot.
“The REAL Elric Brothers are up THERE (pointing to a castle on top of a hill) helping Mr. Mugear with his research!” Interesting!
I wonder who the people are that not only have heard of the Elrics but look and act enough like them to steal their identities….
Mr. Mugear is in a fortress on the side of a mountain.
Heavily guarded by soldiers.
Not suspicious at all.
Before we meet him, we meet, for the first time, “Ed” (a tall youth; guessing about 6’0″, 18-20 years old) and “Al” (maybe 5’0″, about 10-12 years old) Elric, working in a lab.
To differentiate between the two sets of Elrics, I’ll color the text regarding the impostor Elrics in purple.
The REAL Ed and Al are outside, about to break in. The other Elrics notice the flash of light that happens when a Transmutation occur; in this case, Ed and Al breaking into a library. All of the books are about the Philosopher’s Stone. Al and Ed walk in on Ed and Al’s reading of said books; Al is ready to fight, but Fake Al really only wants the others to go home… although he throws in a couple of “short” jokes, for good measure.
Real Ed is outclassed (physically) by Ed, even though the two seem to be on equal ground with Alchemy – Ed doesn’t need a Circle to transmute. We won’t know the final results because the noise of the fight altered the guards; Ed and Al leave the compound.
Outside on a hill, Ed licks his bruises while Al wonders what the Elrics’ real names are and why the older brother is taller. He earns an Ed punch and a warning about size mattering.
Back in the lab, Al wants them to drop the “Elric” names; Ed just wants Al to finish making the Stone. Ed doesn’t want Mugear to take the credit that “dad devoted his entire life to”. Al still has doubts.
We now go a very interesting scene. There is a pond of reddish-pink water, filled by an underground waterfall. An old, large man is standing close by, wearing a mask (similar to what the Elrics were wearing). Even more interesting: “Lust” is sitting on a rock outcropping, next to the waterfall!
“Can we meet someplace less… death-causing, next time?”
He begs her for more time to complete the Stone and takes credit for his guards running off the Elrics. She is skeptical that the Elrics will stay away – she’s right – and warns Mugiar to finish the Stone, quickly.
Ed and Al are still on that hill, with Ed using the cold from Al’s armor to ice his now-swollen face. Behind them, Uncle Belsio shows up, offering them a place to crash. At his home , Belsio doesn’t believe that they are the Elrics but won’t call them out for it.
The next morning, Alicia shows up at her uncle’s house. She greets a waking-up Ed and Al, wondering if they were the ones that snuck into the Castle/Compound, last night.
Ed goes on a mini-tirade (no pun intended) about name theft, swollen jaws, and Philosopher’s Stones, but backs off at the site of Alicia’s face. He storms off into town; Belsio also sends Al to town, for Alicia’s medicine… and to keep an eye on Ed.
In town, Al is at the Pharmacy. He is watching Al; Al, despite the malicious whispers from sick-looking townsfolk, tries to pick up the medicine but is run out of the place by the Pharmacist. Al offers to buy the medicine for him, “to make up for ‘borrowing’ his identity”. He gets the medicine. Al and Al chat about Ed’s State Alchemy training and their father’s search for the Philosopher’s Stone; their father suddenly disappeared, one day, and Ed decided to complete his work, the exact opposite of Ed’s feelings. Al tells him to stop his brother if he’s doing something wrong.
On the way back, Al notices that a lot of people have bad coughs in town. Al hesitates to answer, then flat-out stops when he sees Ed watching them.
Ed walks away; Al runs off. Before he gets too far, he tells Al that his real name is “Fletcher”.
I’ll call him “Fletcher” for the rest of this post; it will be in black text, when feasible.
Just then, Ed races by, looking for the other Elrics. He is determined to stop them,so he plans on sneaking into the compound again… that night.
Back at the compound, Fletcher tries to talk to Ed but Ed is too focused on his work.
At Belsio’s house, Belsio hears the Elrics sneak out. They go underground, instead of through the Compound’s walls, this time. They emerge in a tunnel, with Red Water running through the center. Red Water, according to Ed, is pumped full of alchemical catalysts; put enough megatons of pressure on that Water and it turns to stone, a “cheap imitation” of a Philosopher’s Stone. Suddenly, Ed has problems breathing and passes out. At the end of the tunnel, Fletcher – with a mask on – leads the Elrics out.
Ed wakes up in the Elric’s lab. Ed isn’t too thrilled to see Fletcher, prompting him to apologize for not doing what Al suggested: confront Ed. Instead, he apologizes for the Red Water: it’s actually toxic. That is what is making everyone sick and/or cough. Ed wants to pull a Seth Rollins:
This explains the masks that the fake Elrics wear.
Enter Ed Elric… and his now-created Philosopher’s Stone (imitation).
During the battle, Ed transmutes a door into a pipe. and attempts to spray Ed with Red Water, “straight from the tap”; Ed counters with a transmuted umbrella; both Als are dismayed by both actions. Suddenly, Ed slips, about to fall into the toxic Water, but Fletcher runs in for the save!
An ailing Fletcher finally confronts Ed about everything: the Red Water, their work, the suffering that their work has brought to Xenotime. Out in the hallway, a whistle sounds… and that’s how the episode ends!
An interesting episode. I’ll have a longer review after the recap of part 2. Part 2 – Episode 12 – *should* be up by Saturday night. Episodes 13 and 14 should be up by Monday.