While Al fights the armored figured who calls himself Number 66, Ed meanwhile comes across a transmutation circle and guesses that it was used to create Philosopher’s Stones. Another armored figure who calls himself Number 48 then appears and confirms that this is true. Number 48’s job is to protect this place, and so he and Ed begin fighting. Ed soon realizes that his opponent is just a suit of armor, meaning that he’s just like Al. Reintroducing himself as Slicer, Number 48 declines to tell Ed if the condemned were used to make Philosopher’s Stones, but he does reveal that his seal is inside his helmet. In their subsequent clashes, Ed feels something out of place with his automail arm, and he remembers what Winry said about it being weaker. He has a hard time ending the fight quickly though and finds himself on the defensive a lot.
When Slicer comments on how his companion should have dealt with Al by now, Ed isn’t worried because he’s never won against Al. Indeed, Al isn’t having much problem with Number 66, and Number 66 decides to pause the fight to tell Al about his past as the serial killer Barry the Chopper. When Al reveals that he’s also a soul affixed a suit of armor, he mentions his brother, and that causes Barry to suggest that perhaps Al is an armor doll with fake memories created by Ed. Back inside, Ed pretends that Al has arrived in order to trick Slicer into turning away, thereby giving Ed the opportunity to cut off Slicer’s helmet. This is however not the end of Slicer because his body is able to move on its own. As it turns out, Slicer is a pair of brothers, and the other brother controls the body of the armor. Bleeding and in a dire situation, Ed remembers Scar and uses the same transmutation technique to break his opponent into half.
Despite his victory, Ed refuses to kill the brothers because he still considers them to be human, just like he does with Al. The elder Slicer is impressed enough by this that he offers to tell Ed everything as a parting gift. However, before he can reveal anything, he’s taken out by Lust. She has come with Envy, and together they destroy the seals on Slicer’s armor. Envy in particular mentions a human sacrifice and a plan, and that gets Ed worked up. He loses use of his automail arm though and gets knocked out by Envy, and afterward, Lust decides to burn the place down. Al meanwhile has let Barry’s words get to him, and he remembers how Ed had something that he had wanted to say but didn’t in the past. Fortunately, Ross and Brosh arrive to help him, and moments later, the entire building collapses. Envy emerges carrying the unconscious Ed, but he disappears soon after in the chaos.
In a nearby prison, Kimblee hears what’s going on and loves the sound of a building crumbling from explosives since it reminds him of the Ishval extermination. While all this is going on, away from all the action are Hughes and Mustang who are talking on the phone about Mustang possibly being relocated to Central. Hughes warns of potential enemies and advises that Mustang have a lot of people who understand and support him.
As expected, there were plenty of exciting action sequences this week (though battle-wise I liked the Scar episode a little more), plus an appearance by
AllelujahKimblee at the end. There are still some things that are similar to the first series, but this time I think there are more differences than similarities (for one, Scar’s not in this at all other than Ed being reminded of him at one point), and this part of the story was brought to a conclusion in just one episode as opposed to three. There’s no Greed yet either, and it feels like the Homunculi are a bit more mysterious this time around. One thing though that is constant – and that I really don’t want them to revisit – is Barry filling Al with doubts. I know it’s important character development for him, but I don’t care for the angst. Maybe the manga version does it differently? On the plus side, there’ll be more Winry next week.