I have more FMA thoughts about FMA itself, but the pertinent thing to know right now is that there is an OG anime series, which is the one I first fell in love with, that aired like... 2003-2005. Then there's a movie, which serves as epilogue to the first series. And there is a "new" rebooted series that diverges from the first to follow the manga more closely. I say "new" because I consider it new, but it premiered in like 2011 or something lol. Anyway, my point is, we finished the first series and even though I've definitely seen this show before, more than once, and certainly watched its ending multiple times I'd forgotten what happened and pretty much lost my shit because one of the brothers dies, the other one sacrifices himself to bring his brother back. And the revived brother, on seeing what's happened, goes and does the exact same thing--except he doesn't kill himself, just beams himself straight into another dimension and then they're both alive but SEPARATED IN TWO DIFFERENT REALITIES and they don't even know if the other one is alive or not. AND THAT'S HOW THE SERIES ENDS.
So we watched the movie to make ourselves feel better, but that really didn't help, because although they end up reunited, the end up reunited in the other dimension, AKA not in their own world, without their friends and family. And one of the brothers is missing ALL THE MEMORIES created over the course of the series, which are...important... And also they're in post-WWI Germany on the brink of the Great Depression, the rise of the Nazi Party, and WWII, so... good luck, I guess.
So now we're on the reboot anime, which I've also already seen but far be it from me to remember anything. My point here is, really, that by the end of this week I'll have watched this series end three times, in three different ways, and it is sad sad sad every time, like a mystery spot, and
instead of "Elric brothers"
in my reactions, because this summer I've gone back to almost everything I loved circa 2005 and watched it end and part of that has been revisiting old loves/tying up loose ends and part of that has probably really just been me practicing the motions of SPN ending by proxy.
And it's funny, because I think part of the reason I had literally no memory of the way FMA ended (this would be like not remembering how All Hell Breaks Loose ends lol) is because it was my fandom, right? Like, I'd written a lot of fan fiction and kept writing a lot of fan fiction, and even though I'm pretty sure I stayed pretty canon-centered, as I continue to do in SPN today, it was my playground and Euclidean edges didn't really mean much.
Now, 15 years later, I'm not writing fic for FMA, and I have a different relationship to the series, and so it feels like watching it, and watching it end, as though for the first time. So I wonder if 15 years from now, I will still have new relationships to form with SPN, too. Probably.
Will writing fan fiction shield me from the feeling of SPN ending? I mean, probably. It historically has, in terms of things that happen in SPN. My reactions are pretty skewed, because of that whole playground thing, and the knowledge that I can continue to do whatever I want and go back to whenever I want, etc. That's been my feeling so far.
I remember watching 9x23 with my sister and like, my reaction being lol wtf do I care if Dean's a demon, bring it on, yolo. But for my sister there was no fanfic, there were no headcanons. She was SO shocked and sad and she was just like, "But that's it, then. You can't come back from that. It'd be so sad, to know what you'd been. It wouldn't be possible." She was just so captive to the moment. Don't get me wrong--it's not like I watch SPN like some kind of weird fanfic sociopath. I have a lot of feelings about SPN and a broader range of excellent and complex emotions and relations to the series and Sam and Dean! But it's not quite like that. When I think of feeling like that, I think of what it felt like to watch 5x22 and the summer that followed--where everything just felt deeply final, and like, I was completely chained to the moment of Sam in the Pit and Dean with Lisa and it felt impossible to imagine a future beyond that and going back in time was never quite successful, either. (Even though I'm pretty sure that summer I wrote a lot of pre-S5 fic.) Only one moment was real, and it was the moment of 5x22.
I think that feeling is wonderful--but I also think being real deep in the fic and the personal fantasy is wonderful. I have no idea which one I'll get when watching the SPN finale. But regardless, if I've learned one thing from my FMA re-viewing, it's that I'm looking forward to my 15-year SPN reunion, when I can go back and re-experience all of SPN like my sister did, and like I am now doing with FMA. <333