Anime Blu-ray/DVD Combo Review: Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood OVA Collection

The Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood OVA Collection includes four short stories that can only be seen in this release. When FUNimation Entertainment released the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood OVA Collection in North America, it could only be purchased as a DVD/Blu-ray combo pack.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood OVA Collection
English Publisher: FUNimation Entertainment
Format: Blu-ray/DVD Combo
Release Date: May 22, 2012

The first OVA included in the set is “The Blind Alchemist.” Ed and Al hear of an alchemist who has supposedly performed a successful human transmutation; they find out where he is, and go to talk to him in the hopes of learning how to perform human transmutation in order to get their original bodies back. I thought this was an interesting story, although I thought what Ed and Al learn about what happened with the “human transmutation” was both a little sad and a little disgusting at the same time. If I have to guess where in the overall timeline “The Blind Alchemist” would fall, I would have to say that it would have to take place rather early on in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.

In “Simple People,” Ed damages his automail and needs to have Winry repair it. In order to try to appease her anger, Ed and Al decide to buy Winry some earrings. After the repair, Ed fights an assassin and damages his automail again. When the brothers return for this repair, they learn why Winry began wearing earrings. This story has a good mix of humor and seriousness, and it also ties in with a flashback that’s seen during Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood; however, I haven’t entirely figured out where this particular story would take place in the overall timeline.

“The Chronicle of Teacher” is about the training that Izumi, Ed and Al’s teacher, underwent on the summit of Briggs back when she was 18 years old. Her exploits during this training were referenced at least twice in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, so it was nice to be able to see the backstory for these references. The story itself had a lot of humor in it, and it was rather enjoyable to watch.

The final OVA is titled, “Yet Another Man’s Battlefield.” This story takes place when Roy Mustang is 18 years old and is in military boot camp. This story shows how Roy met Maes Hughes and their friendship both on and off the battlefield. The story also introduces an Ishvalan recruit named Heathcliff Erbe, and the bullying and prejudice he encounters at the boot camp. This is another great OVA that provides backstory for Mustang, and I would also say that it’s probably the most serious of the four OVAs.

The OVA collection that was released for Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is definitely better than the OVA collection that was released for the original Fullmetal Alchemist anime series. While the original OVA collection felt rather random and thrown together, the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood OVA Collection contains stories that are not only relevant to the series, but help to enhance the universe of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.

The extras for both the DVD and Blu-ray are the 4-Koma Theater and trailers for other releases that FUNimation was promoting at the time this DVD/Blu-ray combo was released. The 4-Koma Theater (which is also known as the 4-Panel Theater) consists of 16 episodes; however, each “episode” is barely two minutes in length. Each episode is a short collection of humorous re-tellings of some of the events that take place during the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood anime series. As I watched these, I found myself laughing quite a bit.

If you’re a fan of the Fullmetal Alchemist franchise, I think you’ll want to add the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood OVA Collection to your anime collection. Not only is it needed in order to have everything related to Fullmetal Alchemist, it’s also needed in order to expand on some of the backstory that is hinted at in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.

I wrote this review after watching a copy of the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood OVA Collection DVD/Blu-ray combo that my husband and I purchased.

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