Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood picked up by Superchannel, premieres August 15
Shocking, insane, unexpected – those are the words I describe this revelation. Niche premium channel group Superchannel has picked up the broadcast rights to Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, the 2009 re-adaptation of Hiromu Arakawa’s manga series simply known as “Fullmetal Alchemist”. The 64 episode anime series will begin broadcast on Superchannel 2 (and its HD counterpart) at 10PM EST. The original 2003-2004 anime series aired on YTV in Bionix, and became a relatively large hit, allowing for its movie, The Conqueror of Shamballa to makes it North American television debut on the network.
As I mentioned at the top, this is unexpected – almost as unexpected as when YTV picked up the original FMA series in 2005, ending a 5 year programming drought from Funimation. Superchannel is a niche premium group, that honestly, is probably not received by any large segment of the Canadian population. I don’t get it, and I only know of 1 person who does. The rates to subscribe to this group of channels are also quite high. So it’s telling that Funimation went to this length to get the series on TV here. I guess they felt this broadcast was better than no broadcast. Which I suppose will foreshadow a certain broadcaster’s fall upfronts quite nicely…
I say it’s unexpected, by which I mean being such a niche venue, Superchannel won’t be bringing Brotherhood to the full audience it deserves. The channel has aired anime in the past, with Requiem For the Darkness, Gurren Laggan, and Monster being the highlights. But those are largely due to their programming deal with Starz Media, who ran the (now defunct) Ani-Monday television block on Syfy in the United States. I never expected them to go out of their way, and air an anime series they weren’t getting via a partnership, and as Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood aired on [adult swim] in the United States, it isn’t something they got from Starz. They got it from Funimation.
I was told that Superchannel were looking at more anime series, but shrugged it off, as joked that they were finally going to air Rave Master, but it seems they have bigger series in store, and according to an email received by forum user Kefka_Palazzo, there’s more in store for December.