With Scar having taken hostage of Winry, Ed stops Kimblee from using his alchemy long enough for the two to escape. This entire plan goes back to earlier when Ed and company still had Scar restrained. Winry had actually wrapped up Scar’s injured arm, but she refused to forgive him, and Ed had felt even less kind. Scar had then learned about Miles’ goal to change people’s perceptions of the Ishval people, and Scar was glad that there was someone like him. Fortunately for Scar, Marcoh and May Chang had come and told Miles about their need of him to decipher the research documents. Miles had decided on hiding everyone at Briggs, and Scar had agreed to cooperate. There had also been the matter of Kimblee’s two Chimera soldiers, and Al had convinced them that they wanted to live and return to their original bodies. As for Winry, in order to keep Kimblee from being suspicious, she had come up with the idea of having Scar kidnap her. Ed and Al had opposed this, but Winry told them not to take everything upon just themselves, and they had no choice but to go along with it. Winry had also given Ed her earrings to hold onto until they met back up.
The plan had thus been put into place, and Marcoh’s group had made their way through the tunnels. While they’re walking, Marcoh and Winry talking about her parents reminds Scar of what the elder and his own brother had said about severing the chain of hatred. When they make a brief stop, May Chang brings up her conflicted feelings about the Philosopher’s Stone given what the materials for it are. Marcoh, however, thinks that the research documents could give her an answer. Unbeknownst to them, a complication is emerging. Miles learns that Olivier has been called to Central and has been replaced by one of King Bradley’s men. The only way to let Marcoh’s group know is to send someone after them, but the blizzard makes it impossible for a regular person. Fortunately, Al is unaffected by the cold, so he goes alone on foot. Shortly after he sets out though, he sees a vision of his body in front of the Gate beckoning to him. The vision ends almost as quickly as it begins, and Al realizes that his body is pulling at his soul. He gets a hold of himself though and continues to move forward. Meanwhile, under Central, Father puts four pieces in place representing Al, Ed, Hohenheim, and Izumi, and he needs one more.
The opening song isn’t quite what I expected. I really liked the way it starts, and it’s got a good chorus, but I thought that a CHEMISTRY song would be more hip-hop/R&Bish overall. It’s still growing on me regardless. The ED, on the other hand, is very much the kind of song I expected from SCANDAL. It’s catchy and faster paced than the previous ending songs, and I guess it’s comes off more like another OP than an ED. At this point, however, I think I still prefer the previous EDs, particularly LET IT OUT and Tsunaida Te, for their overall themes. As for the attached animations, I had fun watching all the action in both the OP and ED, and there appear to be plenty of spoilers. They actually made Selim look evil too. I also found it interesting though that the new ED animation ended with Hohenheim in the same sequence as his sons, which implies to me that he’ll be playing a much more central role soon.
As expected, they backtracked this week to explain how the group came to decide to split up and let Scar “kidnap” Winry. Both Winry and Al had some strong moments – it was nice to see Winry standing up for herself in particular – though I was a bit surprised that those two Chimera soldiers came around like that. I mean, I understand that Al’s speech made a big impact on them, but it still feels really weird that things with them have advanced so quickly, to the point where they’ve joined the good guys now and are even shown in the ED sequence.
In any case, the episode wasn’t terribly exciting for the most part. That is, until the end when Al saw his body beckoning to him. What a time for him to be having a crisis. It’s a very interesting development, and I wonder if this means he’ll be seeing more and more visions like this as time passes. It also looks like Father’s plan is pretty close to fruition, and I wonder who the last Alchemist he needs is – probably someone who’s done a human transmutation. Maybe we’ll learn more next week since preview and the title of next episode make it seem like it will be about the Homunculus side.