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4.9 out of 5 stars24
4.9 out of 5 stars
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on 21 September 2008
Having seen the entire anime before the manga I was somewhat sceptical to buy this. I was expecting to be slightly bored reading something that I already knew almost by heart. To an extent with this volume - I was wrong. While the first two chapters are similar it does vary in a number of areas and these differences only increase as the manga goes on. (For those still wondering whether to purchase, in later volumes the story goes in a completely different direction to the anime).

The manga itself, regardless of the anime, is fantastic. It follows the adventures of `The Elric Brothers', who are both gifted alchemists (think magic but following a strict science). After an alchemical experiment gone wrong Edward - the protagonist - loses his arm and leg, while his brother Alphonse loses his entire body, with his soul embedded in a suit of armour. Their aim is to eventually find the Philosopher's Stone - a powerful item that will disregard the rules of alchemy (to gain, something of equal value must be lost) and get their bodies back to normal.

Edward differs from his anime counterpart in many ways. His fuse is far shorter and is a lot more arrogant. However, this slight change is character is refreshing for those who have seen the anime and is still a great character for those who are new to `Fullmetal'. Alphonse is my only gripe (with this volume) as he has far less to say than practically any character. Still, rest assured that there most definitely is a soul stuck in that armoured body.

This review has been basic. It's covered only two characters from a very character-driven manga and I haven't described the story in any detail at all. That is, however, for the best, as `Fullmetal Alchemist' is meant to be discovered one storyline and character at a time. I won't give a way much but I will say - buy this manga. It's cheap, looks nice and at least you gave it a go.
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on 30 December 2007
I started to read the manga after watching the anime, which I fell in love with. If you liked the anime, you *must* read the manga, as in a typical fashion it varies slightly from the anime, giving a different aspect to the story as a whole. I'm up to the second volume and have already found many differences- which to be honest I though would ruin it...but in fact it makes it so much better.

Fullmetal Alchemist is by far one of the best animes, purely because there is a logical story line; which is not only in depth and emotionally complex, but hilarious at times.

Buy it! But it now!!
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on 2 April 2009
There's nothing scarier to a newcomer to a fandom than seeing its rabidly enthusiastic fanbase, so I'll try to keep my FMA review short and I'll attempt not to gush.

This is wonderful. The storyline, artwork and characters are amazingly well realised. Despite the fact that it has a children's' book style front cover, this is one of the more grown up mangas in my collection.

If you've seen the anime, you'll know the story pretty well and a lot of this may seem familiar - the stories contained are the equivalent of 'To Challenge the Sun', 'Body of the Sanctioned', 'Dash! Automail' and 'Be Thou for the People' but there's enough differences, in terms of characterisation and timelines, to keep you hooked.

If you're unfamiliar with the anime then this is a good place to start! The manga is regarded by many to be better than the anime (and I would agree). This volume introduces the main plotline and two of the main characters. Other reviews have covered both of these so I won't go into detail.

All I can say is buy this. If you're new to manga is a great one to start with as it has an excellent story line, well devolved characters, subtext and a lot of humour. If you've only seen the anime, buy this. There's so many differences that you won't be disappointed.
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on 29 June 2005
This is amazing! It follows the story of two brothers, Edward and Alphonse Elric, two alchemists trying to find the legendary Philosopher's Stone, to right the greatest misdeed in alchemy (the attempted ressurection of a person, their mother) that has trapped Al's soul in a suit of armour and lost Ed his left leg and right arm. I don't want to spoil it too much. Ed's size related outbursts are hilarious! It's a great read, doesn't drag and keeps you interested. The two four panels at the end are great too. This has now become my favourite manga, (I've read it like, three times a day since i bought it!) Give it a try! You won't be disappointed! Basically, it rawks, you should have ordered it, like, yesterday!
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on 25 August 2010
As far as manga goes, in my opinion this is the best. Superb artwork, excellent character developement, and a well written storyline that will keep you hooked right til the end.

I started to watch the anime at the same time as reading these but I had to stop watching it so I didn't spoil the manga for myself. This is how good I believe the manga is. I refuse to watch the end of the anime until I've bought and read all of the books!

Unlike many mangas, it sticks to a plot which is continually moving forward to what I know will be a fantastic and climatic ending. One of the things I find infuriating about a lot of manga and anime is that they refuse to end. They just keep churning out more and more episodes without any kind of resolution to the story and simply getting away with it by making the characters stronger. Over and over again. obviously this is because the writers know they are making money, so why stop?

I don't believe Fullmetal Alchemist is one of those series. The ending is gonna be FANTASTIC!

Don't buy this series expecting another One Piece, or Bleach, or Naruto or whatever. This manga is in a different league. I highly recommend it to anyone who has any interest in manga and has never read it.
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on 7 September 2009
Ever since the launch of the original Anime series Fullmetal Alchemist has been my all time favourite series. I started by watching the Anime and finished the sequel film I was hooked! I was in love with the series and all of the characters. After watching the Anime I turned to the Manga to make it a valuable part of my collection, to my surprise the plot is almost completely different to the Anime, and in my opinion is better than the Anime. (But the Anime is still fantastic.) Although I am glad I watched the Anime before I read the Manga as I would imagine I would be disappointed by it, anyone new to the series; watch the Anime first, then read the Manga, you will not regret it!

The Manga itself has fantastic artwork and Hiromu Arakwawa really made a fantastic effort on the plot, with chapter after chapter of a gripping story and fantastic, memorable characters, Fullmetal Alchemist can only be described as Simply Perfection.
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The Fullmetal Alchemist anime is one of my favourite anime series at the moment and I have wanted to read the original manga for a while now, and if anything the manga is even better.

The series follows the young State Alchemist Edward Elric and his brother Alphonse who are searching for the ultimate alchemical treasure, the mythical Philosopher's Stone, so that they can reverse the results of their greatest mistake. This first volume of the manga sees the brothers deal with fake messiahs, corrupt military offices and terrorists and does have a somewhat case of the week feel to it but this is understandable the story arc proper hasn't started fully yet but there are some suggestions of a deeper plot.

Overall the artwork is good' the story itself has some nice humour and some good action. The Fullmetal Alchemist manga is definitely one I will be continuing to read.
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on 2 June 2011
Having a new craving for some new manga to read, I scouted out for what are the most popular mangas out there, and this was one of them. At a first glance, I found the main character odd looking to a point that I almost put it down. I can't say that overall it's the best art style I've seen, but it does the job, so I'm not gonna give it 4 stars like I intended.

But the story is interesting. It's about two alchemists brothers, who are after a magical item that will help them restore their bodies. I'm not gonna say more than that, since I've read 3 volumes and don't actually remember if what I want to mention is revealed in the first volume or not. However, it's interesting, it's funny and I will definitely buy it to the last chapter.
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on 12 January 2009
I am a huge fan of fullmetal alchemist and started with the anime series. Having finished the anime (which I would also highly recommend) I was a little hesitant about reading the manga wondering if it would interst me as well as the show did. All I can say is I am very glad I decided to read it. The artwork is wonderful and the characters are as engaging as ever. Fullmetal alchemist is a unique story that will have you hooked from the start and leave you eager to learn more about the characters' astonishing power of alchemy and the world they inhabit. I've only read the 1st volume and can't wait to read the others!
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on 25 March 2007
one word to sum it up, I've read up to the 7th manga and have watched all the series, seriously one you can get obsessed in, follows the story of Ed and Al Elric, two brothers who practice alchemy and attempt to bring their dead mother back to life-human transmutation, but it goes wrong and Al's body is taken to 'the other side' as are Ed's leg and arm. Ed manages to attach his spirit to a suit of armour. The two brothers set out to retrieve what they lost. There's homonculous, a serial killer who kills state alchemists by exploding their brains from the inside, romance hints between Ed and Winrey... Amazing.
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