Full Metal Alchemist (Hagane no Renkinjutsushi) is an animated series that was made in Japan. These are more commonly referred to as animes. Full Metal Alchemist, better known as FMA to its fans, was first released as a manga in 2002. It became immensely popular and was turned into an anime in 2003. Fifty-one episodes were made before the anime ended. The manga, however, is still being released, much to the delight of the fans.
Full Metal Alchemist mixes fantasy with science. In a world much different from our own, a country called Amestris exists. In Amestris, alchemists are able to use transmutation circles in order to change one item into another. The idea is similar to ancient scientists who used to try to make ordinary objects, like lead, turn into gold. In Amestris, alchemists that have true talent take the state alchemists test in order to work for the government, plying their trade.
Full Metal Alchemist focuses on two brothers: Alphonse and Edward Elric. The two are children of a gifted alchemist who is never around. When their mother dies, they find a teacher to show them the ways of the alchemist. When they are old enough and have finished their training, they travel home to try to use a spell that they found in their father’s journal in order to bring their dead mother back to life. The attempt fails and the two brothers are badly injured. Edward’s left leg is almost demolished, but Alphonse is almost completely destroyed. Edward, through use of his alchemy, gives up his right arm in order to secure his younger brother’s soul into a metal suit of armor. Edward eventually gets a prosthetic arm and leg to replace the two that have been destroyed.
Edward decides to join the state alchemists in order to try to figure out how to fix both he and his younger brother. It is there that he and Alphonse hear about the Philosopher’s Stone. It is said that the Philosopher’s Stone holds the power to allow a person to be able to perform a human transmutation, which is something that almost no alchemist can accomplish, no matter how long he trains for. Edward and Alphonse decide that the Philosopher’s Stone is the answer to their prayers. The series is about their quest to find the Philosopher’s Stone.