kamuinoyume's Fullmetal Alchemist Tv,manga Review

Fullmetal Alchemist

Fullmetal Alchemist tv,manga Review

"You can't gain something without sacrificing something else of the equal value. This is the principle of the equivalent trade."

The story takes place in Amestris, in the early 1900's. Two brothers, Edward and his younger brother Alphonse Elric, live with their mother, Trisha, in the small village of Resembool. Their father left home when they were still very young, but Ed and Al inherited his passion for alchemy. In 1909, Trisha dies of an unknown illness, leading ten-year-old Ed to resent his father for abandoning them. When Edward finds out about flesh forging in an alchemy book that belonged to his father, he engages in an intense training with Al in order to be able to perform a human transmutation and bring their mother back.

In 1910, the Elric brothers cross the forbidden line during the resurrection. Unfortunately, the endeavor is a complete failure, as Ed loses his left leg and Al — his entire body. In a last desperate attempt, Ed uses alchemy to restore his brother's spirit by putting it in a suit of armor, at the further cost of his right arm. The two decide to embark on a journey to find the legendary Philosopher's Stone, rumored to create anything from nothing, in hopes of getting their original bodies back.

Story & Playability

This is a review on Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood (2009 adaptation) and the Manga.

Some of you who've read my previous review on FMA already know that I hate Brotherhood, and some of you suggested that I should read the Manga because it's better. Well, I gave it a chance… but it's the same freaking story (!), and while I might not have hated it as much as Brotherhood (since this was the second time around and I had gotten used to it), I still don't like it.

I'll be splitting this review up in two parts: Story and Characters.

1) Story. Brotherhood, while still possessing a complex plot, takes the generic shonen show approach at dealing with its progression and character development, and for the most part it doesn't stray from the source material, expect for the first 15 episodes, where it rushes certain aspects of the show, while entirely skipping over others. It has a grander/ end of the world sort of feel going for it, which it tries to ignore as best it can. It's like the pink elephant in the room, you can feel it, but no one wants to talk about it.

Veterans from the 2003 series will have major issues with this show, seeing as, most of the things that were good and entertaining in the 2003 version aren't even remotely present in the show, and the Manga can get somewhat boring and predictable. Plus you might not like the evolution of certain characters. And the ending is very Disney like.

The rushed first 15 episodes and the sluggish pace it acquires when it hits the Arc in the North have discourage many viewers from watching the show, which is why I strongly recommend that, if you're a newcomer you should read the Manga first and then watch the Anime.

2) Characters. I don't like most of FMA's characters, since the Manga and by extension Brotherhood has a soft spot for all the cast and more often then not lets them get away with childish decisions, half baked plans and down right twisted morals. Most of the cast are turned into obnoxious Mary-Sues by the end of the show, and become completely un-relatable by the time the show is over.

The villains are all static characters and extremely uninteresting. Especially the main one is the most boring human being to have ever graced the industry of Anime, and I think his bland personality made him seem like somehow he wasn't much of a threat, so I never actually took him seriously.

The characters whose progression I actually enjoyed were: Ling, Hohenheim and Fuhrer Bradley.

So, to wrap this up, I'll give FMA Manga and Brotherhood a 7 for character development and story, because I appreciate the author's plotting and foreshadowing and all the work and effort that went into this monster of a project.

Rating: 7


As an anime, Brotherhood is still fairing well considering today's animation. I'm not a fan of modern character design, since all they've done is cheapen the animation by removing most of the shadow effects and have therefore, made the characters looked less detailed then they did back in any anime before 2007. Brotherhood has unfortunately suffered from this modern day animation syndrome, and while some of the action scenes do look nice, it pains me to think that those lazy bastards would put so much effort into drawing that stupid mini sun in Father's hands than in the actual character design. If I hadn't of re-watched the 2003 series recently, I might have not bitched at Brotherhood as much, but it looks so cheap in comparison that I just can't get over it. I know some people like this type of animation, but I'm not one of them. The backgrounds still look superb though.

The Manga on the other hand, not a fan of the design at all! It's personal preference, so I can't do anything about it. I'll give the Manga a 6 for the design and Brotherhood a 9, which makes it a 7.

Rating: 7


The show has an amazing soundtrack, but unfortunately, it makes poor use of those sounds in the first half of the series. It starts to get better towards the end, but it still doesn't manage to hold up to the 2003 adaptation (and most of the songs are actually copies from the original).

Brotherhood also managed to tick me (and a lot of other people) of by replacing Roy Mustang's voice actor Toru Ohkawa with Shinichiro Miki. This really detracted from my enjoyment of Brotherhood. It actually got so bad that I switched to the English dub, where, thankfully, they'd kept Travis Willingham as Roy's voice. I was forced to watch the last few episodes subbed since the dubbed versions weren't out yet, and barely then did I start somewhat accepting Miki as the new Roy (who wasn't as cool as the old one).

Op and Ed:

The show had some great openings and endings but by god did they have to be so full of bloody spoilers! (especially nr. 5!) The opening that particularly stood out for me was: "Period" (nr. 4) I loved both the sons and the visuals. As for the endings "Shunkan Sentimental" (nr. 4)

So, I'm giving this a 9 (mostly because of Roy).

Rating: 9


So, to wrap this up, FMA (Manga and Brotherhood) had nothing to offer me, neither in terms of mystery, drama, character or relationship development. To me FMA was both unoriginal, boring and extremely cliché. I don't like this anime. Nor do I like the Manga.

I however do strongly recommend it to any new Anime viewers or to Anime and Manga fans in general. Whether you end up hating or loving it, it's and experience i don't think anyone should miss out on.

Rating: 5

Final Verdict

6.67 (above average)

Reviewed by kamuinoyume, Mar 02, 2012


  1. angelxxuan Banned Member Mar 02, 2012

    as I have read some of the manga, it's not all that bad, but this review could have been broken down as well, too much in the top portions and too thin in the others. just an opinion. but you gave this one such low ratings yet gave the other such high? mildly confusion there. why give spoilers those are bad and we don't like them? it's easy to do a review without listing a single spoiler.

  2. kamuinoyume Mar 02, 2012

    You know what the funny part is? I warned you not to read if you didn't want to be spoiled! And I already explained why I gave this such a low rating.

  3. CyanideBlizzard Retired Moderator Mar 02, 2012

    While we appreciate the warning, it has actually been made a rule to keep out spoilers that completely ruin a series. Sadly, this is one of those spoilers. While it is not mentioned yet in the FAQ, due to the process of the FAQ itself being updated, we have it conveniently listed here.

    Quote by from MT Review guidelinesSpoilers and Language
    Since this has never been a major issue, we have avoided putting this up. However, since this has become an increasing problem for more members, we have made a new rule. Any reviews that contain major spoilers will be asked to immediately edit their reviews to remove said spoilers and/or bad language. If the edits do not occur within a week, the review will be deleted. We encourage all members to write reviews, however we discourage those that shun away people from watching a series because it was spoiled or because inappropriate language was used in the review

    There are plenty of ways to talk about something you did not like without spoiling the series for others, and I'm more than positive that a talented writer like yourself could do that no problem.

    Unfortunately, as Xuan mentioned, since this review could be written without I'd recommend editing the review so that everyone can enjoy it without spoiling the series for them, otherwise we will have to remove it and that would make all of us sad.

    Otherwise, it's nice to see a new review from you, Kamuinoyume.

  4. kamuinoyume Mar 03, 2012

    Alright. I'll edit it. But honestly, I don't know where to start with that, since what I hate about the show is the bloody plot.

  5. SnickerdoodleNinja Retired Moderator Mar 03, 2012

    Hmm, maybe condensing the thoughts in your review would be the easiest way to edit out spoilers? As is, you have a ton of very specific examples-and don't get me wrong, examples can be great, provided they don't cross the thin line between general evidence of your stance and specific spoilers -that could be summed up and explained without using quite so many examples. For instance, you could explain that one of your complaints is that the series feels contrived and cliche at times due to the author changing character roles suddenly or something along those lines. Overall, I would say you've got a lot of good information, and that the best way to edit spoilers out would be to trim down certain parts of the review. Hope that makes sense, and good luck! :)

  6. kamuinoyume Mar 03, 2012

    Done. And I'm not editing it a third time. If you think it's still too spoiler ridden for your taste, well, go ahead and delete it.

  7. zathurian Mar 04, 2012

    I'm afraid I entirely disagree with your review about Brotherhood... I don't see how you predicted the plot... the climax came as a freakin shock to me. The counter was equally awesome... the fight scenes were superior and you may have predicted the basic plot but you would never have had the details right.... Mustangs role gave me chills in some places specially in episode 19 and in some parts of the second half... those who watched the series will know what I'm talking about. The soundtracks were amazing... they set the mood and amplified any emotions be it tension, fear or comedy. I generally do not interfere with anyone's opinion but this time I am because I believe that you might discourage Viewers from watching one of the finest series in current anime.
    I have nothing against your opinion... but you should take a more general viewpoint before writing a review.. you can add your opinion at the bottom. Then again.... thats just my opinion.

  8. KoolCartoons Mar 09, 2014

    This review obviously isn't biased. *massive sarcasm*

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