Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is a gateway anime. I had watched and truly enjoyed the original series from several years ago, but I knew it wasn't the full real story since the manga was still running. With the manga set to end this year, a new series was kicked off last year in order to tell it more faithfully, something you don't often see happening in the anime world. You might see an OVA redone as a TV series or even a movie that adapts differently, but a whole new TV series from essentially the same material? It's not something that you'd think would draw a lot of attention. But this show became a gateway for me since I wanted to see the differences and I decided not to wait for the disc release as I opted to make it a show I'd watch weekly via the streaming service that FUNimation has. I hadn't streamed much at all before that so it was definitely something new. I do recommend checking out those reviews if you want an episode by episode breakdown of the show.
Fullmetal Alchemist takes place in an alternate world that's a familiar setting as it has a early 1900's feeling but with the key difference of alchemy existing. Certain people have the ability to create things through it and many of them end up working for the military as State Alchemists. The show has a large cast that only gets larger as it goes on, but at its core are the brothers Edward and Alphonse Elric. The two lost their mother at a fairly young age and they barely knew their father as he had left for an unknown reason, though their mother always felt he'd come back and always loved him. The young boys were intent on bringing their mother back and because of the powers their father had, they were able to study hard at alchemy so they could perform the ultimate taboo; transmutating life. They attempted to bring her soul back to a body they'd create through the key ingredients but instead they brought something else back. And they lost so much more, as Al's body was lost entirely and Ed lost his arm and part of his leg. Ed's skill and quick thinking saved his younger brother though as he was able to bond his soul to a suit of armor through which Al could live and continue on as an alchemist, albeit technically a bodiless one.
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