Friday, April 27, 2018

Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood: Nendoroids!

Haha, with all the new HTTYD3 news and Avengers: Infinity War dropping on us this week, it feels weird to be excited about an anime that finished its run in 2010! The hype train for this series left the station waaaaaaay before I got on board! However, FMAB is a truly epic show, and even now it is getting some pretty neat merchandise! I'm going to review the two Nendoroids I bought. This is the first time I've ever purchased a Nendoroid figure, so it was a pretty novel experience!

The packaging was pretty straightforward (although I can hardly read any of it because it is mostly written in Japanese). Each of the many detachable parts was held neatly in one of the plastic compartments. I would honestly recommend keeping the boxes and the inner plastic as it is helpful for keeping up with all the small parts! The boxes arrived without any scuffs or damage, and the figures were in great shape (although it took me a while to get one of Edward's arms to bend). In case any of you are wondering, I purchased these figures from Crunchyroll. I have a premium membership there, and that got me a nice discount. Edward was around 35$, and Al was around 50$. So, not cheap, but not the most expensive collector's items.

Each figure comes with a stand that allows them to be easily posed even though they have massive, chibi heads. Ed actually came with two different sets of interchangeable legs. One set is standing straight, while the other is in a sprinting/jumping stance. Ed's right arm is also completely customizable, and it comes with the exposed automail version with or without the blade.

The figure also comes with three different facial expressions. One is a confident grin, which feels extremely fitting for Ed's personality. However, we also get a grave-looking expression. This is also really nice considering the dark and serious tone of the show. FMAB does a really good job balancing character driven gravity as well as humor, so both expressions are quite nice! The figure also came with two sets of hands. One set is curled in a fist, while the other is extended with palms out. This works great for Ed's iconic alchemy clap/prayer. The blue lighting doesn't directly attach to the figure, but it is easy to position it in such a way as to may it stick. There is also an alchemy barrier included, and it has a neat gradient from transparent blue up to grey. 

Ed also comes with an enraged expression. This is quite fun, though probably the not the most versatile expression! This is the face Ed generally makes when someone notes how short he is. 

So, overall, Ed is a fantastic figure. I will note that the feet only loosely attach to his straight legs. This isn't a major issue since you can easily use the stand to secure his feet against the ground, but it was a little bit concerning!

The Alphonse figure looks perfect. It also comes with a large stand. His head, arms, and legs all articulate fairly well considering how bulky he is, and the armor has a nice, blue-grey sheen to it. Similar to Ed, this figure came with two sets of hands, one with fists and one with palms. 

A very nice detail is that, upon removal of his helmet, you can see the blood seal that binds Al's soul to the armor. It really goes to show how much effor is put into designing these figurines! Unfortunately, Al cannot clap his hands together, but this is understandable given the stylized proportions that he has been given, and I don't think it is a huge issue. 

Al comes with two extra expressions: one nervous and the other calm and happy. This again is a really awesome tribute to the art style and charm of the series. The chest of his armor can open to conceal two cats (although it doesn't do too good of a job concealing Chimera's from the Ultimate Eye...). As a whole, Al's figure is a little bit simpler than Ed's, but it still is well worth getting if you like the show. They certainly look great standing side by side!

So, as a whole, I am pleased with my purchase! I do have some minor warnings to tag here at the end. One is that these figures have a ton of small parts and joints, and though this makes them incredibly fun to position and customize, I did spend a lot of time worrying that I would either lose or break part of them. I imagine I will only rarely alter the figures in the future, picking my favorite position for them and leaving them in it for the foreseeable future. Though it is tempting to customize them a lot, I am worried that constant play would wear these figures out very quickly. That being said, they would be great figures even without the extra parts, so they feel even more robust with them. I personally think these figures were worth the money, though I might not have felt that way before I got a consistently paying job. In essence, they are similar to a Funko Pop on with much higher production quality. Considering FMAB merchandise is somewhat difficult to come by, these two figures felt like a great way to express my enjoyment of the show!

I have preordered both Roy Mustang and Riza Hawkeye, so I may review them as well later in the year!

I plan to watch Infinity War tomorrow. If it really impresses me I will potentially write a post on it!

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