In my personal opinion. The last 4 episodes were fillers, but REALLY BAD fillers. I hated those 4 episodes. Everything that had happened the previous 20 incredibly awesome episodes was completely ignored and those 4 episodes had no sequence among them. Everything went all right in episode 21, we had Relpha with indignation over a prohibited magic that Roland was using to fight, then we get the beautiful fan service of Kiefer, the awesome opening and then, everything is lost.
It turns out that Sion has a lot of paper work because of Ryner's fault, who got into the kingdom with no problem at all, everyone forgot he was an Alpha Stigma bearer, and even when only Sion soldiers saw him, we get that the news had spread around a little, enough for Field Marshal Claugh Klom to get information and make a judgement on Ryner, but no, Ryner just walks in. This is more like a strecth from me than something serious. The seriousness comes in that the whole episode is wasted in Ryner and Ferris fooling around with a lot of paper work that Sion supposedly got because of Ryner's fault and I wonder... how? why does he, a magician, stigmatized, with no authority at all in the kingdom, has to help with such important royal matters? Ugh! without mentioning that his daddy comes out of nowhere and kills him. So we have a Ryner in this giant red pool again with a crazy creature, his mom, a door that he has to touch, and a "Weaver of all formulas," all those things came out of no where, and to nothingness they returned, with no explanation. So Ryner wakes up with ferris next to him in bed (Yay!!!! something good at least xD) and they both forget that he died. I think that some soldiers appear then, but I don't remember what they do, because later Ryner is shooting fireworks for Sion's birthday.
Then we have the case of Milk, it turns out that Miran just let her go, right, because Luke convinced Miran to let her go even when Stokkart had not fulfilled the part of his deal. And now it turns out that Milk has family... oh wait, no she doesn't, they are dead. I keep wonder if it was Miran's doing, and they just keep talking of "there is something wrong with the kingdom" without letting us know. Then they go to kill a troll with female voice and Milk cries over her, but in Sion's birthday they forget all about it, let's celebrate the his birthday and forget these weird things he is doing! ... period, lower case "L", period.
Then we have the character themselves, Miran being the worst transformation. He actually comes to ask Sion for permission to kill Ryner, with an attitude that does not match what we have seen in the previous 20 episodes (which were awesome!). And episode 23... do you really think that Miran would care even a small little itti bitty bit for Sion's Birthday? and he would go make sure that everything is good for him, and fight in the middle of the day with his pal Claugh so we can never know what he actually did for Sion... I think the Coronel does not appear again in that episode. We fans know more of Miran's personality than the filler directors of Japan.
Field Marshal Claugh Klom, on the other hand, turns out to be pals with Ryner to say "I know the perfect man for the fireworks." Nice try, but only 4 episodes earlier Claugh had heard Ryner's name for the first time. The fact that they are protagonists does not make them intrinsic pals. I don't really know what to think of his new arm. When Tiir cut off the previous arm was REALLY shocking, and Claugh is an awesome character (I like them all, even Sui *sniff*), so I guess he can have his arm back (and I don't know if it is a canonical event... provably, gotta look the Novel!!!). And we also get more fanservice of him with Lady Ehn... so close!!! Damn you Calne!!!
Last, we have that the whole Roland Kingdom was ok with Sion using whatever prohibited magic he was using, but in reality, I bet that Claugh, Calne, Noa, and Eslina would have at least complained, like they always did throughout the series and calmed down with another of Sion's awesome speeches.
The only good things I can see in episode 24 were the introductory story of the Mad Hero and the Lonely Demon. Oh! also Ferris FINALLY throwing herself in Ryner's arms was worth seeing of that episode.
It may be that those 4 episodes had canonical information and events of the novel, but that does not justify ruining the ending of the series. I think The best thing that those Japanese could have done was use those 4 episodes to give us fans a climax and a conclusion completely original (In my opinion, every time japanese divorce from canonical stories they just ruin the series, like with Soul Eater, Fate Stay Night, and Naruto. The first FMA series was surprisingly good, but was eclipsed by Brotherhood). Only a second season with REALLY good development and explanations would compensate this catastrophe.
As of episode 20, we have 6 small stories going on:
- Ryner and Ferris: Coming back home.
- Luke, Milk, and Miran: Rescuing Milk.
- Sion and Lucile: Explanations.
- Claugh, Noah, Calne, and Eslina: Romance.
- Tiir and Ril: Vengeance!
- Relpha and Kiefer: War!!!!
These six small stories could have been developped into a climax that connected at the end by working two stories per episode and having the last episode as the one bringing everything together. Of course, on episode 21, Relpha rides to war with his knights, episodes 22, 23 and 24 would involve the development of the war, awesome fights, some characters dying, the alpha stigma going insane, explanations of the Mad Hero, the Lonely Devil and the Goddess, and the conclusion.
Stay tuned, because eventually I will post my own version of these episodes!