Edward returns Riza Hawkeye’s gun and asks her about the Ishvalan war and what Mustang is trying to achieve. Meanwhile, Doctor Marcoh confesses all to Scar. This isn’t going to end well!
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Episode 30) – The Ishvalan War of Extermination
When Edward gave Riza her gun back, he confessed that he never ended up using it. He tried, but couldn’t bring himself to pull the trigger. Even knowing that Scar killed Winry’s parents, he still couldn’t do it. Riza explained that she was happy for him and revealed that she had killed too many to even feel sorry for herself anymore.
He then asked her about the war in Ishval and if she was willing to talk about it. She was. We learnt that Roy Mustang had been an apprentice alchemist to Riza’s father who refused to give him his ultimate secret since he joined the military. Mustang believed it was the best way to help people. Riza’s father died soon after, revealing that Riza had the secret and it was hers to give now.
Riza followed Mustang into the army and was deployed as a sniper during the conflict. She met up with Mustang and Hughes in the middle of the battlefield and discussed whether what they were doing was correct.
Meanwhile, Scar made Doctor Marcoh explain himself. How was he involved in the extermination of the Ishvalan people? Marcoh told him that he was employed to develop a philosopher’s stone and he needed human sacrifices to do it. Those sacrifices were the Ishvalan people.
That philosopher’s stone was given to a state alchemist with the ability to manipulate blood. The battle turned instantly. The holy leader of the Ishvalan people offered to sacrifice himself to save what was left of his country, however, Bradley saw no extra value in his life. He was one person and that was all he was worth to him.
What did you think?
The imagery in this episode was horrific. Seeing the military march through the streets of Ishval shooting anyone and everyone was terrible. Major Armstrong pretty much gave up when he saw it, especially as he had been responsible for trapping them inside the city. Mustang was as lethal as ever and Hawkeye showed just how hard it is to be a sniper. Every shot is a kill shot and she saw everyone she killed.
It was amazing discovering that Hawkeye’s father’s life work was tattooed on her back, especially now that it was covered with scars. I can’t wait to find out what that transmutation circle does. On another note, I feel quite conflicted about the idea that they seek to be held accountable for what they did in the conflict. There were literally the grunts carrying out the work they were given. Was it wrong? Absolutely, but I can’t help but feel they would have been punished had they not followed through. The people killed deserve justice, but that should come from the people who gave the orders.
What have you learnt?
So, it looks like Doctor Marcoh is dead. However, I’m not entirely sure I believe it. Sure, Scar is absolutely capable of doing it, but at the same time, I think he realises that he may need Marcoh. Scar’s brother would certainly have lamented the loss of his life when there’s so much to learn from him. The biggest issue here is the word vengeance written in blood. That doesn’t feel like something Scar would do.
I’m approaching the midway point of the series and things are really starting to heat up. We’re aware of a lot of the players and what their goals are, but we also had a pretty big realisation when Mustang, Edward, and Alphonse learnt about King Bradley. As a result, everything is up in the air and if Marcoh has died, that’s got to really shake things up, especially for Father.
Other posts in the series
- Series Review
- Episode 1 – Fullmetal Alchemist
- Episode 2 – The First Day
- Episode 3 – City of Heresy
- Episode 4 – An Alchemist’s Anguish
- Episode 5 – Rain of Sorrows
- Episode 6 – Road of Hope
- Episode 7 – Hidden Truths
- Episode 8 – The Fifth Laboratory
- Episode 9 – Created Feelings
- Episode 10 – Separate Destinations
- Episode 11 – Miracle at Rush Valley
- Episode 12 – One is All, All is One
- Episode 13 – Beasts of Dublith
- Episode 14 – Those Who Lurk Underground
- Episode 15 – Envoy From the East
- Episode 16 – Footsteps of a Comrade-in-Arms
- Episode 17 – Cold Flame
- Episode 18 – The Arrogant Palm of a Small Human
- Episode 19 – Death of the Undying
- Episode 20 – Father Before the Grave
- Episode 21 – Advance of the Fool
- Episode 22 – Backs in the Distance
- Episode 23 – Girl on the Battlefield
- Episode 24 – Inside the Belly
- Episode 25 – Doorway of Darkness
- Episode 26 – Reunion
- Episode 27 – Interlude Party
- Episode 28 – Father
- Episode 29 – Struggle of the Fool
- Episode 30 – The Ishvalan War of Extermination
- Episode 31 – The 520 Cens Promise
- Episode 32 – The Fuhrer’s Son
- Episode 33 – The Northern Wall of Briggs
- Episode 34 – Ice Queen
- Episode 35 – The Shape of This Country
- Episode 36 – Family Portrait
- Episode 37 – The First Homunculus
- Episode 38 – Conflict at Baschool
- Episode 39 – Daydream
- Episode 40 – The Dwarf in the Flask
- Episode 41 – The Abyss
- Episode 42 – Signs of a Counter-Offensive
- Episode 43 – Bite of the Ant
- Episode 44 – Revving at Full-throttle
- Episode 45 – The Promised Day
- Episode 46 – Looming Shadows
- Episode 47 – Emissary of Darkness
- Episode 48 – The Oath in the Tunnel
- Episode 49 – Filial Affection
- Episode 50 – Upheaval in Central
- Episode 51 – The Immortal Legion
- Episode 52 – Combined Strength
- Episode 53 – Flame of Vengeance
- Episode 54 – Beyond the Inferno
- Episode 55 – The Adults’ Way of Life
- Episode 56 – The Return of the Fuhrer
- Episode 57 – Eternal Leave
- Episode 58 – Sacrifices
- Episode 59 – Lost Light
- Episode 60 – Eye of Heaven, Gateway of Earth
- Episode 61 – He Who Would Swallow God
- Episode 62 – A Fierce Counterattack
- Episode 63 – The Other Side of the Gateway
- Episode 64 – Journey’s End