Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood - Season 1 - Episode 53 - Review: "The Flames of Revenge"

One part of war that rarely gets touched on both in movies and anime is that of propaganda. Often we're just following the main characters around as they deal with the smaller issues or are swept along with the tide of war. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood has largely gone this way as well but it has finally dabbled on the propaganda side now that everything is getting much larger in scale. So much has been hidden that it's even easier to manipulate the truth and a radio broadcast in the capital goes a long way towards causing uncertainty and tension as it's revealed that Bradley has been attacked and supposedly killed in the east and that Mustang's group is fighting the coup by the senior staff, as opposed to leading the coup itself. It's a great bit of theater that plays out in wonderful simplicity.

The action side of the show does take things up a notch as we get quite the gathering of forces below Central now that Mustang has shown up alongside the likes of Ed and Scar along with the chimera that have been hanging around with them since the trip up north. Having a lot of the Immortal Legion down there as well means there's plenty of time for fighting to go on, but it interestingly shifts to a more verbal battle when the group comes across Envy, who is spoiling for a fight to be sure since he has lots of grudges to settle. There are some really neat moments to this as Mustang tries to ply some information out of him, information that he and others have wanted for a long time, and information that Envy is all too happy to share knowing the pain that it will cause.

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