The pacing between present and past may not work for some, but it really helped the episode out in my opinion. The music is still ho-hum, and animation differs from time to time. Overall, I enjoyed this episode more than the first, despite its lack of action.
Excellent episode, despite having not much in terms of action, a lot of the back-story is revealed while not completely focusing too much on it. The switching between present time and past was very well done, and the break was well timed as well. Although, for some the pacing might seem to quick, since a lot of information is glossed over at a high pace. But, considering the amount of material that needs to be covered, it is not surprising that non-existential “prologue/exposition” material is assumed to be understood and just a refresher is needed. But at the same time, those familiar with the first anime and the manga might be immune to such criticisms (myself included).
Glad to see that the chibi characters were MUCH less frequent, but sadly, the music hasn’t gotten any better. Some of the animation in the scenes were superb, while others, like the depiction of the Elric’s house, was kind of off kilter. No real complaints though, as they are doing a relatively good job given the fact that they are trying to make the series as different from the predecessor without stepping on some toes.
Ed and Al are headed to Lior, on the way Ed day dreams about the past- how Al lost his body and Ed lost his limbs when they tried to revive their mom. Then the story of how Ed became a state alchemist was quickly shown, and the episode ends with Ed and Al arriving in Lior (the town where the first season began in).