So back in the day when it came out and was coming out I was a regular reader of the Full Metal Alchemist Manga, sufficed to say when the first Anime came out in 2003, I was pretty stoked.. And honestly I'm kind of regretful of that because I don't know.. I was a little disappointed by the 2003 Anime to be honest, it wasn't bad by any stretch, in fact it was quite good but after having read the Manga I was disappointed that the Anime which got ahead of the Manga at the time and therefore ran out of canon material took it's own 'creative initiative' and decided to go running wild resulting in a departure from the original story-line of the Manga and the plot of the first Anime severely diverging from that of the Manga.
You know though it wasn't until after finishing the Manga and only recently having watched the new Anime, Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood that I realized how utterly lack-luster and uninspired the first Anime truly was.
The fact that the first Anime diverges so radically from the original story-line of the Manga is not the only problem, the fact of the matter is the first Anime compared to the Manga and then Brotherhood, especially to Brotherhood feels very one dimensional and uninspired. The characters, the lack of characters, the story and the way it just generally seems to be a very cliche story and very 'we pulled this out of our ass' story.
The fact of the matter is that the first Animes characters also suffered from 'redesigns' and 'original interpretations' due to the Manga being behind the Anime and their not wanting to create 'filler', really all they achieved was making a big first Anime series that's virtually all filler. Characters who were otherwise hilarious and epic and really seemed awesome like Barry the Chopper were reduced to seeming very one dimensional and flat in the first Anime whereas in the Manga and Brotherhood they were.. Well, as mentioned; vibrant, funny, epic and awesome.
It's not even just these characters that were omitted, many of the Homunculus were either changed or omitted from the first Anime as well including but not limited to changes made to Pride, Sloth and Wrath such as Wrath being a child when in the actual Manga and Brotherhood he is Fuhrer King Bradley, Sloth in the first Anime having evidently been the Elric's Mother while in the Manga and Brotherhood he was a rather large, slow and dim-witted Homunculus and Pride who in the first Anime was Fuhrer King Bradley but in the Manga and Brotherhood was actually Selim Bradley, the Fuhrer King's son.
It's not the best Anime ever but it's definitely fucking good and it definitely kept me interested the whole way through even though I'd read the whole Manga before I watched the Brotherhood Anime so nothing was really a surprise. It's still worth seeing animated, I mean really worth seeing animated.
Mm mm good!