Fullmetal Alchemist OVA – The Blind Alchemist (The Real One)

Fullmetal Alchemist OVA (01): Moumoku no Renkinjutshi
Fullmetal Alchemist OVA – The Blind Alchemist

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind AlchemistAl tells Ed the rumor of an alchemist named Judau, who’s attached to the rich Hamburgang family, who has performed human transmutation. Ed and Al pay a visit to the large mansion where they meet the blind alchemist, Judau. The lady of the house has her daughter Rosalie play with Al while she and Judau explain they cannot give up the secrets of human transmutation as it was the wish of the now deceased man of the house. All they will say is that Rosalie is the product of that Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind Alchemisthuman transmutation and that he paid with his eyes.

Realizing he’ll get nothing more, Ed goes to find Al and disobeys the lady’s request to stay off the second floor. Rosalie, having learned Al’s secret, takes Al to a special room, which is seen by Ed and he follows. In this large room, a section is curtained off and inside is the living corpse of a young girl, surrounded by flowers and stuffed animals. Rosalie Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind Alchemistreveals her real name to be Amy, a former orphan, and this corpse is the real Rosalie. Amy was adopted because she resembled the real Rosalie. Judau has no idea that he did not bring back the real Rosalie and to spare him further pain, Rosalie’s parents adopted Amy. Amy finds this life a better one than the orphanage and keeps the secret, even keeping the real Rosalie company, though no one knows if the soul inside is Rosalie’s or someone else’s.

Thoughts/Review:

Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind AlchemistI didn’t know there had been OVA’s done for the current FMA series. Actually, I think I was first alerted last November, then someone made mention of it again recently to me. Having been told their existence, I thought I should investigate.

The story is based on a side-story extra by Arakawa-sensei in a FMA guidebook. As such, I would believe the story to be canon, meaning that Judau would be a candidate for Father’s Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind Alchemistmaster plan, assuming Father was aware of Judau. If Al could learn of a rumor, the homunculi could too, even if the Hamburgang family and staff are secluded and keep their yappers shut.

Regardless, for a 16-minute episode that takes our characters back to a time when they still believed human transmutations were doable, this episode is very powerful and sad, not to Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind Alchemistmention a bit frightening. Judau not only succeeded in bringing back someone from the dead, but also did something Ed, Al, and Izumi had not done — keep that dead person “alive.” A living corpse is no life at all, and the scary thing is that there’s a soul trapped in that body. Even if it is the real Rosalie, she’s still trapped inside her corpse, unable to do more than occasionally move her mouth. I could not help but be moved by that, feeling sorry for whomever is trapped there.

Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind AlchemistThe other tragedy is how the Hamburgang’s lied after Judau lost his sight and let him believe he’d truly succeeded in bringing Rosalie back rather than the fact that he’d simply attached a soul to her corpse and made it a zombie. For them to then go out and adopt a young girl to become Rosalie for the sake of a lie is also sad, though as Amy notes, this lie got her out of an orphanage and into a nice home, even if strange. I like how Amy cares for Rosalie but for some reason, my mind Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind Alchemistthought of a few years down the road when Amy becomes a teenager and then a woman. Once that happens, what then becomes of Rosalie, assuming the body still lives?

So, we have a good episode that is somber, tragic, and manages to take an unexpected angle on the laws of equivalent exchange. I hope FUNimation scored this along with the Brotherhood TV series.

Fullmetal Alchemist OVA - The Blind Alchemist

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7 Responses to “Fullmetal Alchemist OVA – The Blind Alchemist (The Real One)”

  1. evgenidb says:

    Since Judau appeared only in the OVA and not in the regular series so far, probably he won’t be the fifth sacrifice. Or he might get an reintroduction somehow in the series. Then he might become a sacrifice or at least a candidate for that. Who knows… there’s only one way to see that.

    But don’t forget Mustang. If you remember, he is also a candidate for a sacrifice. See the episode in which Lust dies.

    Also, Marcho too might be a candidate for sacrifice.

  2. arimareiji says:

    Yow. I wonder if the side-story came out anywhere around the same time as the Terri Schiavo brouhaha, or any of the “facilitated communication” episodes?

    That said, this also mirrors an indisputably real phenomenon: “Locked-in syndrome.” Despite my love of links, I’ll leave it up to anyone who wants to know more to do their own looking – I don’t want to be responsible for others’ nightmares.

  3. ku_fei lover says:

    the next ova is how winry got her earrings

    those earrings I hate so much…..

    but yes this story was dramatic..

  4. AstroNerdBoy says:

    @evgenidb — I tend to agree with you about Judau, but he would be a prime candidate for it if the homunculi knew. However, now that I think of it, even if the homunculi knew of the attempt, they would likely also learn of Amy’s adoption and realize Judau hadn’t transmuted her. So unless they really dug deep, they wouldn’t know about the living corpse and so we have a way for Judau to be a prime candidate but one who will not be selected.

    @arimareiji — Yes. Locked-in Syndrome is very much mirrored here.

    @Ku_fei — I’m going to try to watch that a little later.

  5. Anonymous says:

    The thing is though Judau didn’t actually succeed in anything all too special. I think it was all an accident. The corpse was part of the transmutation, the real Rosalie’s corpse, and the soul became attached to it. How, why and who’s exactly is still a mystery but I believe Judau played little part in any of it happening. The soul could be anyone’s soul, and isn’t all of that an amazing feat, whether it be the real Rosalie’s soul or someone else’s. Cause it’s been shown multiple times that attaching a soul to another object is entirely possible. And Al’s soul did briefly become attached to the “thing” that Ed and Al brought to “life”. But that body rejected his soul. The soul is in the blood, and presumably a dead person’s soul cannot be pulled from the gate. So that leaves a bit of confusion around Rosalie’s situation. But I think the soul, whoever’s it may be, wasn’t rejected because the body was simply a corpse and wasn’t any more alive than a suit of armor. But probably one day the soul will reject that body because it isn’t living and so isn’t that souls proper home, whether it be Rosalie’s soul or not, just as Al’s soul is beginning to reject his armor body. The whole mystery really depends on whose soul is in that corpse.

    Anyway…I do personally believe as a manga reader that all this and that about souls and how they come back, become attached, get rejected, is going to be pivotal to the whole of the plot and explained by the end. And this OVA story will be good evidence toward what ever the explanation turns out to be.

    As for being a canidate for sacrifice…I don’t think he will simply because the homunculi don’t seem to go out looking for rumors. They set up the State Alchemist system to find canidates. God knows why they’re being so lazy. But all they’ve found out so far have simply been through the process of finding State Alchemists. Unless they need them to be soilders so they can keep close tabs on them, and have an easier way to control them, since they are controlling the whole plan through a military force. And a blind guy couldn’t be in the military. But of course, that plan backfired, since Ed and Al and Roy figured it out.

  6. evgenidb says:

    Don’t forget that none of the Human transmutations of the dead wasn’t successful. The proof is Izumi and her baby or the Elric brothers and their mother.

  7. Charred Knight says:

    I would have liked this chapter a lot better if Arakawa didn’t scare the crap out of me. The mummified remains of Rosalie is easily the freakiest scene in Fullmetal Alchemist.

    Also I just think that the homunculi have never heard of him because it’s never mentioned in the series unlike Tales of the Master (which appears in the second guide book) which is mentioned by Olivier.

    Personally I prefer the second OVA “Simple People” as it’s a cute story about how people you barely met change you. That and it has Riza with her hair down in a military uniform.

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