Selim Bradley (セリム・ブラッドレイ, Serimu Buraddorei) is the son of King Bradley, the Führer of Amestris. Due to the divergence between the manga and the 2003 anime series, Selim is portrayed as two very different characters in both the continuities.
In the manga and 2009 series, he was eventually revealed to be Pride (プライド, Puraido), the first Homunculus that Father created, embodying the cruelest, most prejudicial, yet most basic aspect of evil. He is the pinnacle of the Homunculi's homunculus-centric beliefs and contempt of humans. He is the second-in-command of the Homunculi, and can also possess the greatest overall physical strength among them.
Pride is one of the Homunculi who possess physical incarnations of their deeper desires that take shape when their stones are almost completely depleted.
When first introduced under the guise of Selim Bradley, Pride acts as if he has the mannerisms of a usual young boy, displaying a proneness to hero worship. He displays great admiration and respect for his "father", King Bradley, at one point writing a glowing report about him for a school project. He also seems fanatically interested in the Elric Brothers, reacting with giddy excitement upon meeting them. Sometimes he reveals part of his true personality, such as when he calls Edward "tiny" even though Pride is actually much shorter than Edward, and when he shows no shame about exclaiming loudly in the royal library.
Much of his positive traits vanish when he reverts to his Pride persona. His true personality is similar to Father's. He tries to act superior to humans by pretending them to be insects for him, filling himself with false dignity and futile boastfulness. However, whereas Father treats humans with a bored or apathetic attitude (probably because Father is slothful), Pride treats humans like playthings/slaves. He loves the honor of being a Homunculus the most, and encourages his siblings to feel contempt towards all non-homunculi. Pride is also extremely arrogant in battle. He quickly resorts to petty taunts and insults against opponents. He is also shown to be extremely cruel, as shown when he ruthlessly killed his own brother Gluttony in order for him to absorb Gluttony's abilities for his fight against Edward.
He has great faith in his immense strength, feeling that he can overcome any opposition, no matter how powerful, and this often causes him to underestimate his opponents. He sees humans as pathetic weaklings, inferior beings "of no importance."
He is very biased, always coming up with excuses to justify his cruel deeds for the sake of not hearing insults or accusations against him or his image; for example, after he brutally dismembers and then eats Gluttony, he gave the justification that Gluttony was "originally a part of him anyway" (both Pride and Gluttony come from Father). Also, as he is about devour Kimblee, he tells Kimblee "Don't worry, you'll be alive, inside me.", completely disregarding the fact that Kimblee is likely to feel great suffering while inside Pride.
Pride wants to have pawns he can use at his own convenience.
According to Envy, Pride is so selfish and self-absorbed that he tends to show up at the wrong time and isn't there when the other homunculi need him. He cares so little about the others that the deaths of even many of them will have no effect whatsoever on his heart; in fact, he's so heartless that he doesn't even get annoyed about losing such potential "tools" of his. Greed calls Pride a "monster," even for a homunculus such as him. Even Envy, a homunculus filled with huge sadism, dislikes and is angered by Pride's hubris, calling Pride a "bastard".
When insulted by another homunculus, Pride disguises his own evil by calling the homunculus ill-mannered and uncivilized, and uses this as an excuse to suggest that Pride deserves to inflict extreme misery and suffering on him ("What a terrible thing to say to your own brother Greed! I might have to kill you.", Pride once said to Greed after Greed insults him), even though Pride himself likes to mock the other homunculi.
Despite all of these negative traits, it is implied that Pride, like Wrath, enjoyed the false family life he had with Mrs. Bradley; because she risked her life to protect him, Pride became fond of her and was happy to know what it was like to have a mother. When his container body is destroyed by Edward Elric beneath Central, he experiences immense panic at the thought of dying. He recalls happy memories of his adoptive mother, and, after he has been reduced to his true form, calls for his "mama" in the nest prepared for him by Edward.
Manga and 2009 Anime
He frequently asks his father to tell him stories from the battlefront and interesting anecdotes from his everyday goings-on. Selim professes a desire to become a State Alchemist so as to be more useful to the Führer and is a self-professed fan of Edward Elric. It is revealed that Selim is not Bradley's biological son, but rather adopted from a distant relative. When Riza Hawkeye hears from Mrs. Bradley that Selim comes from her husband's side, she discovers the awful truth: that Selim Bradley is actually the Homunculus known as Pride. After Father's death, Edward hands over the body of Pride to a tearful Mrs. Bradley.
Two years later, it is shown that Pride has grown up and once again goes by the name of "Selim Bradley". He is seen acting like a regular child, caring for an injured bird and seemingly having no recollection of his life as Father's firstborn son. Pride is the only surviving Homunculus.
Powers and Abilities
Aside from the Homunculi's standard powers, Pride's abilities lie within both a black living controllable multi-eyed and multi-mouthed organic blob (that resembles Father's true form) he creates by absorbing light, and shadows themselves.
Pride's black multi-eyed ooze and his shadows are his actual form, with the childlike body being a simple "container" for him to move around in, similar to Father's flask-contained form. Pride often shapes parts of himself into long, tendril-arm-like appendages that resemble those of Father's actual form and those of the Eye of God (which references him being a "son" of Father, who in turn was created from the Eye's essence; it may also be a reference to pride being a pathetic attempt to outwardly mimic God).
Pride can only exist within a given area: the area inside his primary "container", the area around his primary "container", and the transmutation circle (which is his secondary "container" and the same one used by Father for his main plan) throughout Amestris. Additionally, Pride cannot create these dark extensions of himself if there are no shadows near his body. This means that, if he is in complete darkness, he is incapable of using his power, and if his body is engulfed by light intense enough to extinguish the shadows around him, like a flash grenade, his extensions also vanish. This holds true for the extensions far from his body as well, as intense light will cause them to wither to a certain degree. Perhaps unique among the Homunculi, Pride does not appear to bleed when injured, and his human shaped container appears to be hollow, with its contents apparently consisting only of his shadowy true form and his Stone.
Pride can also spread his essence throughout shadows and can sense everything around and that happens around that shadow, thus allowing him to "watch" anything through them. Pride used this ability to make sure and prevent Riza Hawkeye from spreading Selim Bradley's true identity to other people (though Riza foiled this by speaking in code to Roy Mustang).
Pride can manipulate, slice through or devour anything that comes in contact with his black ooze (which can become resistant/invulnerable to conventional physical harm, and can also move at superhuman speeds), although it can be deflected by sufficiently hard objects; Carbon-hardened objects appear particularly resistant. He can also see through his eyes and talk through his mouths wherever his shadow extend, an ability he uses to watch over the country-wide transmutation tunnel, slaughtering anyone who enters it.
Pride can control Alphonse's (armor) body by inserting extensions of himself inside the armor body, he is able to do this - while also keeping Alphonse unconscious - thanks to his relation to him through Hohenheim allowing him to manipulate Alphone's soul through his blood seal. He used this in an attempt to trick Edward into completely falling under Pride's grasp (Greed, who was with Edward at the time, foils this by sensing Pride's presence). He was even capable of talking with Alphonse's voice in this state.
Pride can consume living things and assimilate the abilities and strengths of that particular victim, along with their corresponding weaknesses (i.e. after devouring Gluttony, Pride gained an enhanced sense of smell and sharp teeth on his shadows, along with Gluttony's ravenous hunger). After assimilating Kimblee, Pride gains capability of Alchemy and can activate it using a corresponding circle with his shadows, later also briefly assimilating the Gold-Toothed Doctor to use his knowledge to perform human transmutation - while also using him as the human transmutation "material". However, he was forced to use his own Philosopher's Stone to accomplish this, and was never demonstrated to be capable of using alchemy in any other way.
In chapter 104, Pride attempts to use his small size and speed to exploit Edward's weaknesses in hand-to-hand combat as Edward is used to fighting people taller than him, but has his fighting style read easily by his opponent.
Another ability Pride seems to have is the ability to slightly change the age that he appears to be. While he is always a young child, pictures of him taken in the past show his apparent age fluctuating by about five years. Since Father had Pride living out of the shadows since he was born, this ability is likely used to make him appear human.
Pride later seems to gain the ability to genuinely age upon having his Philosopher's stone depleted of its souls and being forced into his true form. Over the two years after the end of the series he managed to grow from his original fetus-like form to a child form resembling his "container" used to hold his shadows.
In the 2003 anime
In this anime Selim Bradley is an ordinary boy, while Pride is the true identity of King Bradley, the "Ultimate Eye". His eye, usually covered by an eye patch, allows him to see everything, even the air in a room. This allows him to have amazing reflexes and speed, as he is able to see what his opponent is planning and where they will move. His weapon of choice is the sword, which he wields with great proficiency. Because he ages like a regular human, Dante considers him her greatest creation, a title he is very proud of. Because the Homunculi cannot reproduce he was given a family to keep up appearances: his son, Selim Bradley, and a wife. Pride's identity was first confirmed in the 40th episode when the snake-chimera Martel attacked him to prevent Bradley from turning Reole into another Ishval. During this clash, his eye patch was sliced off, exposing his identity. Pride proceeded to kill Martel, but not before she was able to pass on this truth to Al.
Later, when Roy Mustang learns from the Elrics that Bradley is a Homunculus and verified it, Pride gives Selim the key to a safe where Pride keeps the skull of his true body. When Selim unknowingly brings the skull back to him during his battle with Mustang, he is severely weakened by its presence. Out of anger he strangles Selim and snaps his neck before Roy stops him, but this weakened state allows Mustang to kill him by repeatedly setting him on fire, similar to how Roy killed Lust in the manga. Pride was the fourth of the Homunculi to die in the 2003 anime, because Selim Bradley, the manga's Pride who survived in the manga and 2009 anime, is innocent and fully human in the anime.
|Lust | Gluttony | Greed | Sloth | Wrath | Envy | Pride|
|2003 Anime Exclusive|
|Wrath | Sloth | Pride|