With Lan Fan injured and Gluttony going after her, Ling springs into action and slices off Gluttony’s arms and head. He then grabs Lan Fan and tries to escape, but he has to deal with King Bradley first, and King Bradley has the regenerated Gluttony smack him into the nearby building. King Bradley then tries to question Ling, and when he sees Ling still thinking about escaping, he suggests leaving Lan Fan behind. Ling responds to this by declaring that a king is there for the people and that King Bradley can thus never become a true king. Lan Fan then drops a flashbang, temporarily blinding the Homunculus and giving Ling the chance to escape, but unfortunately, King Bradley is still able to see using his Ultimate Eye. Meanwhile, outside of town, Winry is with Gracia and Elicia visiting Hughes’ grave. Winry remembers how her own parents left when she was a little girl, and she realizes that she was seeing Hughes as her own father. After returning to town, Winry hears that Ed and Al are fighting again, and she starts to get worried as she makes her way towards where it’s all happening.
At that moment, Ed is exhausting himself fighting Scar, and since they haven’t gotten any signal from Ling yet, Al realizes that he has to buy some time. He thus confronts Scar about being against alchemists yet using alchemy himself, so Scar talks about how they create and he destroys. When Al brings up Nina and Tucker, Scar asserts that the chimera would never have been able to return back to normal, and she would have been treated as a laboratory animal. Ed and Al realize that there’s some truth to Scar’s words, but Ed then brings up how Scar also killed Winry’s parents, unaware that Winry had just wandered into hearing distance. Winry is shocked to hear this, and after falling to her knees, she reaches for a nearby gun and points it at Scar. Realizing that Winry is the daughter of the doctors, Scar recalls back to when his town got attacked by the military and how his brother had been studying alchemy and alkahestry. His brother had a tattooed right arm for decomposition and a tattooed left arm for reconstruction, and at the time, he was buried in his work.
The others in town had hoped that Scar’s brother’s research could lead to a power that could oppose the State Alchemists, but Scar saw alchemy as something that just led to more death and destruction. His entire family had been hit by an attack from a certain alchemist, and while his brother had protected him, Scar still lost his right arm. Then, in the immediate aftermath of the blast, his injured brother had made the decision to transfer his own right arm to Scar. Sometime later, Scar had woken up in the field hospital where Winry’s parents were working. The memories of his brother combined with the realization that he now had his brother’s right arm, plus the fact that the Rockbells both had blue eyes caused Scar to go into a rage, and he had killed the doctors. Back in the present, Scar tells Winry that she can shoot him, but if she does, he’ll treat her like an enemy. Scar also tells Ed that the chain of hatred won’t stop until one of them is dead, and he reminds everyone that it was the Amestrians who started the war.
Winry doesn’t let go of the gun, but she doesn’t shoot either, and when Ed tries to protect her, Scar is reminded of how his own brother had protected him. This combined with Al’s subsequent attack makes Scar decide to back off for now, and Al goes after him while Ed stays with Winry. She is in tears since she wasn’t able to shoot even though she knew about everything that Scar had done, and Ed thinks that it’s because she helped someone give birth back in Rush Valley. He suggests that her hands are not hands that kill people, but rather hands that let people live, and Winry can only cry in response.
Holy crap that was a good episode. It was really intense, particularly towards the end, and I was glued to the screen and on the edge of my seat. I actually came into the episode thinking that it’d be mostly Ling vs. the Homunculus, but that ended up being less than a quarter of the episode. It had, however, some very nice action shots, and I’m impressed Ling was able to stay alive versus King Bradley given how all of King Bradley’s other opponents have fared. The fact that the battle is technically still going also bodes well for next week’s episode.
The bulk of the episode was about Winry and Scar though, and it was much better than I thought it’d be. I still find it hard to excuse what Scar did, but I can at least understand now where his rage was coming from, especially since they emphasized the blue eyes so well against the black-and-white of everything else. The final scene where Winry was crying was also incredibly emotional, and I loved how LET IT OUT was the perfect ending song to go with it. It’s almost as if they had chosen that song for this specific episode. In any case, now that I think about it, we’ve had a string of really good FMA:B episodes in the past month or two, and it’s left me very excited about the series in general.