the fact that relationships between women weren’t as huge as ones between dudes doesn’t disqualify fma from being feminist
1. It’s a shame there wasn’t more ladylove, but a dude was the main character so that’s proably why the relationships…the main character was involved in…were the most important?
2. Literally the only major brotps that didn’t involve Ed were one for Roy (who died) and one for Ling (who was a homunculus forcibly sharing Ling’s body and also died).
3. There were lady relationships very significant to the narrative. Paninya and Winry got a couple chapters! Winry and Riza got a sidestory! Winry majorly impacted Paninya’s life, she CONVINCED HER TO STOP STEALING, she helped Paninya make A POSITIVE CHANGE IN THEIR LIFE! WOMEN HELPING EACH OTHER! IT’S REALLY COOL!
Gracia taught Winry how the make apple pie (majorly important to the plot) and made her feel like she had a family! Elicia called Winry her big sister and Winry replied “I’m so glad I have a little sister!!!”. Winry and Elicia and Gracia had a scene where they just hung out together and they helped Winry with the loss she felt!
Riza impacted Winry’s life MAJORLY, Riza is THE SOLE REASON WINRY DOESN’T HATE THE MILITARY. And Lan Fan is the reason May got to come with Ling and Lan fan! And if it weren’t for Pinako, Winry wouldn’t be who she is AT ALL! And since Winry is a primary character, that’s a big deal? Izumi and Olivier also got their own chapter, it’s literally titled “two strong women”.
Fuck, Arakawa even deliberately set it up to look like Winry and Rose were gonna spat over Ed but then had them
fall madly in love really like and admire each other and Rose was totally like “OMG YER THE PERSON WHO SAVED ED HE SAVED ME THEREFORE YOU SAVE ME WANNA BANG” Riza was shown to have a female friend and I think Arakawa was deliberate in trying to say “hey Riza may be surrounded by dudes most of the time but she also has a bff she goes shopping with and who backs her up (WITH GUNS) when she’s in trouble, women in the military stick together”
There are positive relationships between women. There are women helping and shaping each other’s lives. Women aren’t shown to be inherently competitive or to fight over dudes, in fact they’re deliberately shown not to be. Yes, I’d like it to be focused on more, but it’s there and that’s significant. The manga depicts women as supportive of each other!
4. Just because a manga is weak in ONE AREA doesn’t disqualify it from feminism (not even offensive! Just “this could be a little stronger”). FMA still subverts a lot of shit and has a lot of narratives about women asserting and reclaiming their agency, and it’s written by a woman! That’s a big deal! Sorry, it’s not a checklist! It’s about where women are presented positively and like people and have narratives and don’t play into stereotypes deliberately and FMA does that.
THE FUNNIEST THING ABOUT THE WHOLE ARGUMENT OF ROY AND ED’S SUPER BIG IMPORTANT RELATIONSHIP REALLY, IN TERMS OF CANON, IS THAT:
- RIZA IS THE ONE WHO HAS STRONG RELATIONSHIPS WITH ALL OF THE GOLDEN TRIO, NOT…ROY? SHE IS CLOSER TO ALL OF THEM THAN HE IS?
- ED DOESN’T EVEN TAKE ROY ALL THAT SERIOUSLY UNTIL AFTER HE TALKS WITH HER AND HEARS HOW MUCH SHE BELIEVES IN HIM?
- EDWARD SORT OF ADMIRES RIZA A LOT?? (but winry more)
- (bc you know he accused winry of trying to be hot by wearing earrings that Riza wears)
- and so it’s like??? okay yes roy and edward influence each other but Riza influences them both like 2,000x more?
- Riza actively is the bridge to making Roy into the man he is and relatable to Edward and the kids like without her it just falls apart.
- roy and ed’s relationship in canon directly relates back to how much they like and respect riza hawkeye
Yeah, Riza is the one Ed feels comfortable talking to about his problems, Riza is the one Ed confides to about what happened with Winry, Riza is the one who casually notices Ed loves Winry and in turn makes him like, actually realize that. Riza’s the one whose house Ed visits, Riza’s the one Ed feels comfortable asking about Ishval.
I find Roy and Ed’s relationship interesting with the fact Ed really doesn’t like Roy- he doesn’t! He cares about him, and he respects and trusts him (not as much as he trusts most of the people he trusts), but he’s not going to try to talk to him about his problems or hang out with him ever, which is something he canonically is down with doing with Riza. I can’t blame Ed at all bc a) he has huge issues with male authority figures, especially ones he knows are willing to manipulate him and b) his first impression of Roy is Roy literally running in, grabbing him by the shirt and screaming at him at the lowest point in his life, making him like, go to near tears. I think that does color Ed’s perception of Roy and a first impression like that is a hard thing for him to get over, it would be for me.
And he and Al will never get Roy? Like right after this Roy goes off with a lady, and Ed and Al have no idea it’s one of Roy’s Mom’s employees and Ed is like “WHAT THE FUCK AFTER WHAT I JUST SAID HE’S SO HORRIBLE I HATE HIM SO OFFENDED!” and Al actually says “He’s the kind of grow-up I never want to grow up to be!” They are both just super offended and throwing all this side-eye at Roy. He manipulative and deceptive (for good reasons) and the Elric bros are very much not? They’ll never be comfortable with that.
Edward Elric is adorably earnest and has a good heart, but is still a kid who’s often wrong about things
Everyone around him admits the fact he is still a naive kid
He knows he’s ignorant. Miles know’s he’s ignorant.
and also like, not experienced in the ways of the world at all.
Miles thinks of him as a earnest but naive little kid and is generally amused at and indulgent of him because of this. “He’s a good kid but he doesn’t know what the fuck he’s talking about” is Miles general attitude toward Ed, I’d say.
AND MILES IS PROVEN RIGHT, ED’S NAIVETY DOES ALMOST GET HIM KILLED
Ed is not supposed to be right in this particular situation. I don’t think Miles is necc. supposed to be completely right either, but you know, it’s just life. Actions have consequences. Ed took a stupid risk bc of his ideals and it backfired on him.
When Ed lectures Roy about revenge? Scar kinda notes that BOTH he and Ed have been driven purely by anger in the past (Probably remembering Ed’s “WELL IT’S A GOOD THING IT’S UP TO WINRY BECAUSE I WOULD TOTES WANT TO BEAT YOU TO DEATH” speech. Scar doesn’t hold the same respect for Ed he holds for Winry, u guys. He knows Ed is a fuckup too.)
And Scar and Riza are ultimately the ones who get through to Roy? Like Scar’s like “revenge is fine and all and like I give a shit about what happens to you, but no way are you adequate to make reparations to this country any better than the last guy if you go back on your ideals because you’re really pissed off.”
Ed brings Scar because he knows he would never be able to convince Roy by himself. Because he’s just a kid. Which Roy is like “holy shit this little kid is getting to me how far gone am I” like that’s what he thinks of Ed lecturing him. But it’s the fact he’s like, upset Riza that’s the most alarming. He values Riza’s opinion over anyone elses.
Anyway, yeah, Olivier pretty much thinks of Ed as a naive kid too btw as noted in both the manga and the Brotherhood adaption. In the anime, she even wonders if his naivete might get them all killed
So if you don’t think it’s not stated over and over in the manga that Ed is a CHILD naive, ignorant of the world and not always right I just…? Or that the other characters don’t call him out on being just a privileged naive kid? Idk I didn’t read that at all…none of the adults around him treat him like an equal. They don’t see him as all knowing. They rarely take him seriously. They rarely agree with him. And that’s something I found nice and realistic about FMA, and something that made Ed as a character NOT a mouthpiece or even someone who was right most of the time, I found.