|Directed by Yasuhiro Irie|
|Music by Akira Senju|
|Genre Adventure, Science fantasy|
Produced by Hirō MaruyamaNoritomo YonaiRyo ŌyamaNobuyuki Kurashige
Written by Hiroshi ŌnogiShoutarou Suga
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Japanese: 鋼の錬金術師 FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST, Hepburn: Hagane no Renkinjutsushi: Furumetaru Arukemisuto) is an anime series adapted from the Fullmetal Alchemist manga by Hiromu Arakawa. Produced by Bones, the series is directed by Yasuhiro Irie and written by Hiroshi Ōnogi. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is the second anime television series based on Fullmetal Alchemist, the first being 2003's Fullmetal Alchemist. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is a 1:1 adaptation directly following the original events of the manga. It was first announced in the manga series' 20th tankōbon volume. In Japan, it is differentiated from the 2003 series by the inclusion of the English language title. The series premiered on April 5, 2009, on MBS-TBS' Sunday 5:00 PM JST anime time block, replacing Mobile Suit Gundam 00, and ran weekly until airing its final episode on July 4, 2010. Voice actresses Romi Park and Rie Kugimiya reprise their roles as main characters Edward and Alphonse Elric, respectively.
On March 20, 2009, it was announced that the English title of the series was Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood and that it would receive its English language premiere on Animax Asia, with Japanese audio and English subtitles, from April 10, 2009, at 8:30 p.m., five days after its Japanese premiere. On April 3, 2009, Funimation announced they would stream English subtitled episodes four days after they air in Japan. Madman Entertainment would also stream it "within days" of the episodes airing in Japan. On February 14, 2010, the English-dubbed version of the series began its run on Adult Swim. On February 1, 2016, Funimation announced that they would be losing home video and streaming rights to both Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood and Fullmetal Alchemist the Movie: Conqueror of Shamballa by March 31, 2016. The series was transferred to Aniplex of America.
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood adapts all 27 volumes of the manga, unlike the first television series. Brothers Edward and Alphonse Elric are raised by their mother Trisha Elric in the remote village of Resembool in the country of Amestris. Their father Hohenheim, a noted and very gifted alchemist, abandoned his family while the boys were still young, and while in Trisha's care they began to show an affinity for alchemy. However, when Trisha died of a lingering illness, they were cared for by their best friend Winry Rockbell and her grandmother Pinako. The boys traveled the world to advance their alchemic training under Izumi Curtis. Upon returning home, the two decide to try to bring their mother back to life with alchemy. However, human transmutation is a taboo, as it is impossible to do so properly. In the failed transmutation that results, Al's body is completely obliterated and Ed loses his left leg. In a last ditch attempt to keep his brother alive, Ed sacrifices his right arm to bring Al's soul back and houses it in a nearby suit of armor. After Edward receives automail prosthetics from Winry and Pinako, the brothers decide to burn their childhood home down (symbolizing their determination and decision of "no turning back") and head to the capital city to become government sanctioned State Alchemists. After passing the exam, Edward is dubbed the "Fullmetal Alchemist" by the State Military, and the brothers begin their quest to discover the nature of the fabled Philosopher's Stone, under the direction of Colonel Roy Mustang. Along the way, they discover a deep government conspiracy to hide the true nature of the Philosopher's Stone that involves the homunculi, the alchemists of the neighboring nation of Xing, the scarred man from the war-torn nation of Ishval, and their own father's past.
In the 20th volume of the manga, creator Arakawa announced that a second Fullmetal Alchemist was being produced. Bones produced the new series with Yasuhiro Irie as director and Hiroshi Ōnogi as writer. The Japanese version of the series is called Hagane no Renkinjutsushi: Fullmetal Alchemist (鋼の錬金術師 FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST, Hagane no Renkinjutsushi: Furumetaru Arukemisuto, abbreviated as 鋼の錬金術師FA) to differentiate it from the 2003 series. When the manga was reaching its ending, Irie announced the staff was already working in the final episodes on that ending and expressed shock at the series' conclusion.
Broadcast and release
The series premiered on April 5, 2009, on MBS-TBS's Sunday 5:00 pm JST anime block. Voice actresses Romi Park and Rie Kugimiya reprised their roles as Edward and Alphonse Elric respectively. Unlike the first anime which had an original story, the second series follows the story of the manga.
On March 20, 2009, it was announced that the English title of the series was Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood and that it would receive its English language premiere on Animax Asia, with Japanese audio and English subtitles, at 8:30 p.m. on April 10, 2009. Aniplex started releasing the series on Blu-ray and DVD on August 26, 2009; the first release included two episodes and an OVA. Two more OVAs were included in the fifth and ninth volumes alongside four episodes. Other volumes feature four episodes and no OVAs. Sixteen volumes were released, the last one on November 24, 2010.
On April 3, 2009, Funimation announced it would stream English-subtitled episodes four days after they aired in Japan. Madman Entertainment would also stream it "within days" of the episodes airing in Japan. Funimation suspended the release of new episodes for a few weeks because of an incident in which an episode of One Piece was uploaded before it had aired in Japan. However, the episodes were later made available on the Funimation website and on the official Funimation channel on YouTube. In September 2009, Funimation announced the cast for an English dub of the series. On February 13, 2010, the English dub of the series premiered on Adult Swim and ended on September 25, 2011. Funimation began releasing the episodes on Blu-ray and DVD on May 25, 2010; each release contained thirteen episodes. Five volumes were released, the last one on August 2, 2011. In the United Kingdom, Manga Entertainment released the series in five DVD and Blu-ray volumes during 2010 and 2011, and later in a two-part boxset.
Madman Entertainment distributed the series in Australia. Meanwhile, the series debuted in Canada on Super Channel.
Following the final episode of Brotherhood, a new film was announced. A teaser trailer began streaming in November 2010 on the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood official site, confirming that a movie entitled Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos would open throughout Japan in July 2011. It was directed by Kazuya Murata and scripted by Yūichi Shinpo. The film follows the Elrics' attempts to capture a criminal in another country. Funimation licensed the film and released it in selected theaters in the United States in January 2012, and on DVD and Blu-ray on April 24, 2012.
Music and soundtracks
Brotherhood's music composer is Akira Senju. Ten pieces of theme music were used in Brotherhood.
The respective opening and ending themes for the first 14 episodes are "Again" by Yui and "Uso" (嘘, lit. "Lie") by Sid. From episode 15–26, the respective opening and ending themes are "Hologram" by Nico Touches the Walls and "Let It Out" by Miho Fukuhara. From episode 27–38, the respective opening and ending themes are "Golden Time Lover" by Sukima Switch and "Tsunaida Te" (つないだ手, lit. "Tied Hands") by Lil'B. From episode 39–50, the respective opening and ending themes are "Period" by Chemistry and "Shunkan Sentimental" (瞬間センチメンタル, Shunkan Senchimentaru, lit. "Sentimental Moment") by Scandal. From episodes 51–62, the respective opening and ending themes are "Rain" (レイン, Rein) by Sid and "Ray of Light" by Shoko Nakagawa. While episodes 63 and 64 do not use opening themes, they use "Rain" and "Hologram", respectively, for the endings.
The first CD soundtrack from this anime was published on October 14, 2009. The second CD soundtrack from the anime was published on March 24, 2010. The third CD soundtrack became available on July 7, 2010. Fullmetal Alchemist Final Best, a compilation of opening and ending songs, was released on July 28, 2010. On June 29, 2011, the original soundtrack of Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos (FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST Nageki no Oka no Seinaru Hoshi), composed by Taro Iwashiro, was released.
The first fourteen episodes of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood received criticism from members of the Anime News Network staff, who said that repeating events from the first anime led to a lack of suspense. Mania Entertainment's Chris Beveridge said that the entertainment in these episodes lay in the differences in the characters' actions from the first series, and original content which focused on the emotional theme of the series. In another review, Beveridge praised the new fight scenes and said the extra drama which made these episodes "solid". Chris Zimmerman from Comic Book Bin said the series "turns around and establishes its own identity" because of the inclusion of new characters and revelations not shown in the first series, increasing its depth. He said the animation was superior to that of the first anime; his comments focused on the characters' expressions and the execution of the fight scenes. Writing for The Los Angeles Times, Charles Solomon ranked Brotherhood the second best anime of 2010 on his "Top 10".
Much praise was given to the climactic episodes for the way action scenes and morals were conveyed; many reviewers found them superior to the conclusion of the first Fullmetal Alchemist anime. Critics found the ending satisfying; Mark Thomas of The Fandom Post called it a "virtually perfect ending to an outstanding series". In April 2010, the journal Animage listed it as the sixth best anime launched between April 2009 and March 2010.