Father's plan to use an entire country as Philosopher's Stones to give him an unimaginable amount of power might have been thwarted, but despite this he isn't exactly someone to be trifled with, and as he heads to the surface the danger is obvious - Even if he can't create more stones en mass via his original plan, he can still do it on a near-individual bases, person by agonising person.
So, it's up to Hoenheim, his sons and company to stop this virtual god from rampaging any further - A task which is easier said than done considering the still not inconsiderable powers available to Father. He's hardly afraid to use these powers either, responding to Hoenheim's goading by "giving birth" to a handful of supposed human beings before literally blowing away half of Central with a single blast.
Although our heroes all survive this blast which is aimed at them, it leaves both Hoenheim and Alphonse in dire straits as they use their bodies to shield their comrades while the others find themselves in anything but tip-top condition. Luckily for them, the remaining soldiers from Briggs refuse to flinch in the face of any enemy, and thus we see them launching attack after attack upon Father with virtually no let-up, regardless of how ineffective it seems. However, with Father's Philosopher's Stones being used rapidly by this constant barrage, the path to victory becomes clear (albeit difficult), and we soon see every man and woman left standing taking their part in the onslaught against their new enemy. Even Greed gets in on the act, fooling Father and forcing him to drop his guard and finally allowing for attacks to break through his previously impenetrable defence. With defeat in sight, Father makes a last desperate attempt to continue his life, looking towards Edward as his first victim - A situation which leads to his brother taking desperate action to save his sibling...
Well, what can I say about this episode? In a word, it's breath-taking; an absolutely stunning barrage of bloody violence, gunfire and explosions that is regularly dazzling to watch. These pyrotechnics aren't just for show either, with any blow having a purpose in not only defeating Father but also reinforcing humanity's greatest strength - It's ability to unite and work together in the face of even the most terrifying threat, and the importance of friendship, comradeship and... well, brotherhood, in the whole thing. On top of this we have a plot that was an incredible mixed bag of emotions - Heart-wrenching at times, rousing at others, all the way through to that magnificent moment where Al puts his trust and power in his brother to both save him and push him on towards victory. Really, words almost fail me - I know I've been labelling this show as AAA stuff for some time now, but this particular instalment was just something else. Quite simply anime at its absolute, unbeatable best.