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Old 2011-11-30, 21:26   Link #50
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2010
Age: 27
Itís still not doing it for me. Iím probably going to get crap for this, since itís heretical to say anything bad about it here, but I still donít see how this anime is supposed to be this nigh-perfect, criticism-immune work, thatís supposedly the pinnacle of the medium. When I break down the various constituent qualities I can name several anime that are better than Brotherhood. Brotherhood may make it into my top 100, but thereís no way that I agree that itís anywhere near as good as everyone says it is.

A lot of people prefer this rendition because it follows the manga more closely, but then if I wanted to read the manga, then Iíd read the manga. A straight adaption of a manga can be great in its own right, but generally, it has to add something in terms of music or animation quality in order to fully utilize the animation medium. In that regard, Brotherhood isnít anything special. Any anime that features an original soundtrack composed by Yuki Kaijura or Yoko Kanno, such as Madoka, Kara no Kyoukai, Eureka Seven, FMA 2003, Noir, or Cowboy Bebop, far outstrips it in that category. For Brotherhood, I canít even remember any tracks and itís only been one month since I watched it. I can remember many of the tracks from Naruto, despite its fairly unremarkable soundtrack, and I havenít seen that anime in eight years.
Rating: Below Average

Animation has always been an extremely subjective category, but weíre going to claim that Brotherhood is objectively better than anything else, as many in the fanbase would, than we might as well go into it. At least as far as my tastes are concerned, FMA 2003, a series that outages it by five years, is far more aesthetically pleasing. Brotherhood doesnít really do anything special or abstract in terms of its animation style, as Madoka does, and its production value isnít outrageously high as in Fate Zero. The animation seems to be average.
Rating: Average

World Building
The world building in Brotherhood is admittedly above average, though then again, so was FMA 2003ís, though I actually preferred the world building in the later. Likewise, the world building in Twelve Kingdoms and in the combined Nasuverse canon is far better than that found within Brotherhood, in that, like the Potterverse, you could literally fill additional books with information on the world alone. This is, nonetheless, one category in which Iíd view Brotherhood in being far above the average, which is why it gets its own category.
Rating: Above Average

Story and Characters
The story really didnít impress me that much. So, a teenager organizes a rag tag team of misfits to fight against an antagonist attempting to become a god. That sounds likeÖthe plot of every JRPG that I grew tired of several years ago. If it didnít impress me when I played Final Fantasy VII back in 2003, then it certainly doesnít impress me now. On that topic, God forbid, Sephiroth is actually a better villain than Father is. It makes me feel dirty even implying that Sephiroth is a good villain, but at least his characterization in Crisis Core moved him beyond being interesting simply because he walked through a wall of fire as his theme music played in the background.

Father doesnít have even that. He has no sympathetic qualities to relate to, so his status as a fully developed 3-dimensional character is non-existent. But thatís okay. Some villains are interesting simply because of the dread that they inspire. Father doesnít even have that. He isnít the kind of character that you love to hate, like the disgustingly evil villain, Vidal, of Panís Labyrinth. He isnít charismatic like Heath Ledgerís portrayal of the Joker. He doesnít even inspire small children to stand in awe at how cool he is like Darth Vader. Heís just sort of there.

So Father wants to gain unlimited power, while killing a large amount of people in the process? Big deal; get in line. Why should I care? Watching television, reading books, and playing video games, I go through several villains who want to kill a lot unanimous red shirts. I donít even remember most of them. At least your average, hackneyed, Final Fantasy villain does something to the protagonist to make it personal. Father just sits around on his throne for most of the series, before deciding that heís motivated by one of the most clichťd goals in Japanese fiction. He almost came off as a Designated Villain because I Just. Didnít. Care. About him. Thatís kind of bad, since a lot of people would say that a good story is created by a good antagonist or conflict. Can you imagine the Dark Knight without the Joker? The Lion King without Scar? Star Wars without Darth Vadar? Well, I can, and itís horrible. Heroes are typically passive while villains drive the plot, so if you have a boring villain who sets up a boring conflict for the hero to fight against, then the result is predictablyÖboring.
Rating: Average (Just adapt Tales of Symphonia or Final Fantasy 6 and youíd get the same level of quality)

Below Average Music + Average Animation + Above Average World Building + Average Story = indisputably, the best anime ever made? LOL Whut?

I think the more extreme members of the fandom need to get off their high horse and accept that their high opinion of the show is subjective. Either that or watch more anime. As for me personally, though, Iím rating it as an above average shonen. No more, no less.
LunarMoon is offline