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Dearheart
What's Project Don't Forget? Check out this thread to find out and join in the fun!

A well-told and well-loved story can be one of the most powerful things in the world, and Fullmetal Alchemist is no exception. This is a chance for you to tell the world YOUR Fullmetal story - why you love FMA, what it means to you and how it’s impacted your life. Every fan has a story, and the goal of Project Don’t Forget is to bring those stories together.

If you've looked at what the project is and don't feel comfortable being in the video, but would still like to be part of the fun, this thread is for you! You can share your FMA testimonials right here, for the rest of us to read and enjoy. smile.gif No videos, no pressure, no worries. Simply answer each question below and post your Fullmetal Story!

~ -:- ~
1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?

4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?

~ -:- ~

Feel free to include personal experiences and ways you related to FMA, if you feel comfortable with that! Can't wait to see what all of you will share! biggrin.gif
Hahligirl56
Well, seeing as how I don't have a mic but I really wanted to participate...here goes! ^^;

1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?

-I had heard of Fullmetal Alchemist before and tried to watch it, but wasn’t in the right mindset so I quit watching episode one…I’m a Christian, so after learning about Vic Mignogna and his values, and also learning about Ouran High School Host Club (and enjoying it), I knew that a couple of the voice actors worked on Fullmetal Alchemist, which was well-known and popular…I decided to try again, this time with wide-eyed fascination as the story of the two Elric brothers unfolded before my eyes. A couple of years later, Brotherhood was announced and eventually released…I was terrified because I was so used to the beauty of the original show and its themes and how much I loved it, and because Brotherhood looked different, I kind of looked down on it…until I saw several funny moments of it up on YouTube, and I remembered how much I loved the show. I changed my mind and watched Brotherhood along with my brother, and we both loved as much, if not more, than the original Fullmetal Alchemist. :3

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?

-It was different compared to other anime I’d seen where the main characters were all about gaining power…in Fullmetal, there really isn’t that much physical change aside from aging, so most characters stay (power-wise) the same all throughout. The Elric brothers already possessed valuable power and knowledge…but they misused it, and it cost them dearly. I was touched by the deep love and relationship that the brothers had with their mother after their father left them, and the intense anger that Ed had for that father when he finally returned long after their mother had died and the damage was done. It was relatable and poigant, and I appreciate every character-driven and funny moment FMA had to offer us. The main focus is of the brothers’ devotion to one another and their friends, and the events associated with them and around them, and how they all intertwine…the characters are memorable and powerful with different ideals and personalities, but still very likable, even many of the villains. It’s powerful, it’s suspenseful, it’s character driven and multi-dimensional with so many different aspects between humor, action, and adventure that there is something in there for most everyone who is willing to give it a chance.

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?

-There are so many different themes and stories within FMA, it’s remarkable. There is the focus of the Equivalent Exchange concept, and how you can’t get something without first sacrificing something in return…it’s discussed within both series, and the characters both follow and rebel against its concept…so much so that you begin to wonder whether Equivalent Exchange is right or is it just wishful thinking. What’s logical and what isn’t? The homunculi are also derived from the Seven Deadly Sins, which stems from Catholic beliefs, and each of the Sins takes on the definitive personality traits that would fit each Sin. Their ‘Father’ has desires that would make him akin to a devil. Each of the Homunculi each face an individual fate that reflects them and most of the main characters, which is thought-provoking in itself. Edward and Alphonse are punished at the beginning of the story for trying to bring back their dead mother, which although it was understanding, it was wrong just the same, and they learned that the hard way. By the end of FMA, you can tell that most of these characters have really grown by sacrificing so much, so that in the end, you’re so wide-eyed and amazed by each twist that the series gives, that you can’t help but smile at the end of the series.


4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?

- (Don’t bring back dead people - it’s bad! D=) No, seriously…I have a brother myself, and we’re the same age difference as Ed and Al are (one year). I’m shorter and therefore I look younger than him, which is why I love Ed’s short rants, because they’re rants I wish I could scream at everyone. Truthfully, though, the show taught me that I should be nicer to my brother, and that I should appreciate my family while I still have them. Each choice Ed makes regarding his brother and someone else makes me wonder, "I wonder what I would do in that situation? Would I make the right choice?" What would happen if my brother and I were suddenly thrown into this situation that seems more than what we could handle? Ed and Al fight (all brothers and sisters fight; it's only natural), but you can see the love and devotion (in a non-disgusting way) that makes you admire them and root for them. Everyone dies at one point, some young and some old, and you never know when or how. I also admire Ed’s stern belief in not killing anyone…which is a little clichéd, but not so much to the point where it’s any less admirable of him, given that they live in a very dangerous, very deadly world…it’s certainly unique to the people in FMA. I love the amounts of symbolism of FMA, but if it really did teach me anything, it was to appreciate and love everyone while they are still there with me. It’s also because of FMA that I had even a slight fascination with chemistry and science that I probably wouldn’t have found elsewhere, and I’m glad of the different formulas they through in often that are very accurate.

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?

- There really is something in it for there for everyone…I don’t believe that anything is perfect, and that certainly includes TV shows and anime…but I adore it. I adore the characters, the themes, the action, the humor, the technology, the show altogether. I’m always excited to be able to talk about FMA and discuss it, but there’s just so much in it that makes it a great epic that it’s hard for me to actually find words to praise it. I love being an FMA fan and re-watching the series…what made it best for me, though, is that it is one of the few anime series that my brother actually enjoys. We had made a deal that if I watched the movies he chose, he would watch FMA Brotherhood alongside me. I watched his first, to be a good sport, and then we watched Brotherhood, and we were both mesmerized and I was touched to see that he enjoyed it just as much as I did and the themes that it carried. It really is an experience I would only love to share with my loved ones. I also enjoy reading others' testimonies on the show and how it has impacted them - it makes it all the worthwhile to watch such a wonderful show. smile.gif
Phoenixlight13
I'll give this one a try, I suppose.

1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?

I remember finding the first three volumes of it a while back, and I recall my cousin telling me about Fullmetal Alchemist, so I read the series. I got hooked on it immediately. I watched the anime (which hadn't gone to Brotherhood on Adult Swim yet), and it was where we first meet Frank Archer, I think. It was either that or where we learn the idenity of one of the homunculus.

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?

I fell in love with Edward Elric himself. He...he just seemed like a tragic character when I read the first three volumes, until I saw him freak out about his height. Then I loved him entirely.

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?

I think it's a mix of typical shonen and adventure manga. I think I saw some themes of love and hardship in there, but I can't be too sure.

4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?

FMA taught me that giving up is never right, especially when you have a dream to pursue. The whole "Equivelent Exchange" thing has stuck with me, as I do things for someone if they did something for me.

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?

The characters. They were so dynamic, especially Ling and the Elric Brothers. Both just wanted their friends to be safe. I won't ever forget the music and the rather touching ending of Brotherhood. I hope that anyone who gets into FMA falls in love with it as well.
PwnedByPineapple
Okay, I’ve had this written for a while, and for some reason, I thought I posted it. What the heck. I’m so absentminded right now. xD Anyway:


1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?

I first discovered Fullmetal Alchemist around one of my birthdays, actually. I’d gotten a gift card to Books-A-Million, and I was all set to buy the exact books I had in mind. However, they only had one of the books I wanted, and I honestly believe that was an act of God right there. xD I drifted to the manga section because I’d heard a lot about anime/manga, and I was curious. I’d also heard good things about FMA, so I picked it up, read the summary, and decided oh, what the heck, might as well give it a try.

Best impulse buy of my life.

The first volume intrigued me so much that I immediately hit the Internet to find out just what this was. New to the world of anime as I was, it took me a little while to find the (original) anime, but as soon as I did, I watched the first few episodes and was so hooked that I dragged my sister into it as well. It took me a while to finish the first series, during which I devoured the manga as well and then Brotherhood not long after.

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?

Believe me when I say that the only thing I’d read before it that impacted me as much was The Lord of the Rings. I fell in love with Fullmetal Alchemist because I’d never seen anything quite like it. I’d never seen anything that came so close to being absolutely flawless. It had such a unique voice and message, such a perfect balance of drama and humor, such amazingly real characters, that it was love at first read. Stories are my means of escape and expression and are such an integral part of my life, and FMA is honestly the greatest story I’ve ever encountered.

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?

At its heart, Fullmetal Alchemist is about life, pure and simple. It’s about redemption and sin, love and loss, happiness and pain, joy and sadness, about friendship and true love and humanity’s eternal struggle.

4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?

It taught me things, but not things that can be fully expressed in words. I’ll just say that it opened doors for me. Before it, I was the quiet, painfully shy little nerd who was made fun of behind her back and who was easily depressed and put down. I never had much of a personality or zeal for living, actually; I just didn’t care about much. But Fullmetal Alchemist taught me something about courage and identity and led me to watch several other wonderful anime that helped me tremendously. It led me to discover this little underground world of fans, which helped me to realize that it was okay not to be like everyone else. FMA was both a direct and indirect reason for my fierce love of life and of this world. It, and the doors it opened, helped me to grow as a person and develop my own identity. I never want to go back to the way I was before, and I often thank God for putting Fullmetal Alchemist in my path.

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?

Apart from the above, I think the thing I’ll remember most is the wonder. That feeling of watching and reading FMA and being absolutely mesmerized and in awe is one I will never forget.

Also… I read the last sixty chapters or so in two sittings. I’ve never devoted that much straight time to a book before. Never gonna forget that either. xD
~LilianaDC~
1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?
I discovered FMA through watching trailer for Brotherhood series on Animax. Actually, I could have not noticed it if it wasn't Paku Romi who got my attention. Paku Romi is my most favorite seiyuu, so I couldn't not to check out this anime. And after that, after the very first Brotherhood episode, I became a fan of Fullmetal Alchemist. Long after that I found out that there were a first adaptation and also manga. I was really impressed with these series and til now, FMA is still one of the best anime ever.

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?
I'm kind of obsessed with everything that is related to military or so, even though I wouldn't join it in real life, if I was asked to. And then, of course, the Elric brothers. The story of two boys who lost the love of mother in such early age, and after that, the huge desire to feel her warmth once again... I love that FMA is the story not only about two brothers trying to find the way to get their bodies back, but also consists of the side-story about the military and the future of Amestris.

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?
For me, FMA is about understanding the different meanings and kinds of "love", such as "brotherly love" between Ed and Al, about loyalty between Colonel Mustang and his men (also loyal love of Roy and Riza), friendship, and so on. Also, FMA is about being a human even though they can be weak, easily controlled by those who're upon them, silly, etc., but being and living as a human.

4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?
No matter how weak and silly you are, if you have strength to move on and you're a man of action, almost every wish could be granted for your patience, courage, loyalty, and, most important, love for the world. That's the lesson I got from FMA.

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?
I will never forget the story of brothers trying to regain their own paradise they've lost in childhood, but finding out instead that they should have moved on. I will never forget the story of men being so loyal to each other, always being ready to sacrifice themselves to save another, and loving each other without any words. FMA has both dramatic and positive sides, and that's make FMA so unforgettable. There's always someone who'll make you happy, when you're sad.
I will never forget all these wonderful characters - Ed, Al, Roy and his men, Homunculi, Briggs men along with Olivier Armstrong - they're so good that I can't forget all of them.
I will never forget FMA, a story about everything.




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p.s. Not sure if my grammar is right, so... sorry! ._.
HeyStopStaring
1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?
It was a few years or so after I became interested in anime. I was confused about why everyone was raving about "FMA" and "Ed" and "Vic", so I looked it up online. At first I was confused as heck, because up until then I had watched anime like Lucky Star and Haruhi, and now they were talking about redemption and the makeup of humans and everything. But it had a sort of odd charm, so I kept watching. And I'm glad I did.

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?
The first few episodes were almost nonstop silliness with some serious stuff thrown in, so I thought I knew what to expect. And then came Night of the Chimera's Cry and its following episode. Wow. The raw emotion in those episodes hit me like a ton of bricks. And that's when I started taking the series seriously.

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?
It's about a few things, actually. It's about loyalty, family, redemtion, and getting back on your own two feet.

4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?
At the time I found the series, I was in my sophmore year of high school and suddenly, everyone was saying that I need to figure out my future, and was pretty much lost and I felt like anything I did wouldn't matter to anyone. Then I watched the episode where Ed accepts that he can't do everything, because he's only a human. That was the first anime that ever touched me emotionally. It stays in my mind even to this day, as a freshman in college ready to take on life.

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?
Everything about FMA is awesome and unforgettable. The characters and plot are so deep you could spend days and weeks disecting it. The music is beautiful, the animation is fluid, the voice acting is awe-inspiring. The lessons there are so meaningful, they will lodge in your heart and never come out.
the_witty_kitty
I've actually never posted on here, and have always been too daunted to get involved here, but after hearing your heartfelt story on the blog, Dearheart, I felt inspired to share my story as well. I agreed with practically everything you said, and was so happy to be reminded of why I love this story so much. Here's my story.

1. I think it's only fitting that I was introduced to FMA through my brother. My brother is two years older than I am, and has been my best friend literally since the day I was born; he is very much my Nii-san like Ed is to Al. He's always discovering new things and introducing them to me, so one day he said he'd been hearing a lot of good things about an anime called Full Metal Alchemist. He showed me a fanart of Ed with angel wings and a huge sword, and in that moment we both agreed we needed to watch it. (Never mind that Ed turned out not to have wings or a sword, unless you count his arm XD)

We actually watched episode 40 first (the last episode with Martel), just to see if it looked interesting. I had no idea what was going on, couldn't figure out why they were calling the girl in the armor "he" or how the armor could talk on its own, but it looked serious and intriguing. So we decided to watch the whole show, and promptly forgot everything from that episode.

Then we watched the actual first episode, and...I was hooked instantly. I had no idea what to expect, but all of a sudden there were these two boys kneeling on the floor and screaming and bleeding all over the place. Those first few minutes were exhilarating and riveting. Then it switched to Ed slouching through the desert, and it was so funny! I was immediately interested and wanted to find out more, so we excitedly watched on.


2. It took me nine episodes before I really felt like I had a handle on the characters and how the world worked, but that was all it took for me to fall in love with it and want it to keep going forever. (It was the Youswell episode that really made me understand what drives Ed and how he responds to things.) I could talk about any number of elements that made FMA interesting and lovable, from the character design to the hilarity to the deep questions brought up in the plot, but at the end of the day I have to realize that what brings me back every time is the Elric brothers.

Not until I'd watched through the entire first series twice did I realize that I felt so connected to the brothers because they reminded me so much of my brother and myself. I've grown sick and tired of siblings who are at each other's throats all the time, because I think that siblings are built-in best friends and should be regarded that way. It was so refreshing to see brothers who were best friends, and who would give up everything for each other. One of the most powerful moments of the entire series is when Ed is drawing transmutation circles on himself in his own blood, shouting, "I'll give you my leg, my arms, even my heart - HE'S THE ONLY LITTLE BROTHER I'VE GOT!!!!"

I was blown away by the sheer love and devotion Ed and Al have for each other, and I still am. I kept watching the first series, read the manga, waited on the edge of my seat every month for each new chapter, and kept up with the release of each Brotherhood episode online, because of the Elric brothers. And I will continue to read and watch because of the brothers.


3. Starting to notice a pattern here? tongue.gif The heart of FMA is brotherly love. The Elric brothers are the main characters, and their love for each other is what drives the story forward. Not romance, no matter how much it might look like that from fanart and fanfiction. The brothers are the core, and everything else is an offshoot of them. They move forward, fight, and persevere because of their bond. It's what ties the entire story together, and I can't express how much I love that. There are precious few stories that include such a strong brotherly bond, let alone put it in the center.

More broadly speaking, FMA is about selflessness, and giving up everything for the people you love. Ed and Al do that, obviously - to each other but also to their friends like Winry and Mustang - but so do all the protagonists. You can see this same theme in characters like manga!Hohenheim, Mustang, Hawkeye, even Mei Chang.

FMA is about seeing others as more important than yourself, and doing whatever you can to help them.


4. FMA taught me - surprise surprise! - to value my brother more. Well, all my siblings, but especially my brother. I realized that I was taking him for granted, that I wasn't valuing our relationship enough. As I've fallen head-over-heels in love with the Elric brothers' story and bond, I've realized that while the bond between me and my brother is different, it's just as powerful and important.

When my brother left for college a year ago, I had a really hard time accepting it and learning to adjust. I spent roughly five months leading up to his departure crying every day. I'm not even exaggerating. I cried every day, because I didn't want to say goodbye to my best friend who'd always been there, who'd never been separated from me for longer than a couple weeks. And I was terrified that, because we wouldn't be together physically, our relationship would change. I dreaded losing the closeness, the instant understanding we shared because we grew up together and our tastes were often almost identical. FMA had taught me to treasure that bond, and now I was afraid it would snap in two. But FMA helped me through that transition, because I wrote a fic in which the brothers had to say goodbye, and did and said everything I wished I could with my brother. I gave it to him when he left, and he understood what I was trying to say. Moreover, nothing essential in our relationship has changed. We're still just as close as ever, and just as Ed and Al are able to go their separate ways at the end of Brotherhood without breaking off all ties to each other, so I can strike out on a new path without my brother constantly at my side. It's because we know how important we are to each other; it gives us the strength to move forward.

On another note, FMA has improved my writing by showing me how an excellent story can be put together, and by inspiring me to write lots of fics and get in lots of practice. I've improved greatly in the six years I've been writing FMA fics. Also, those fics have introduced me to several very dear friends and strengthened several other friendships. I would never have met those wonderful people if not for FMA.


5. FMA is unforgettable because it is my life. That sounds obsessive, and I suppose it is, but FMA has been something I could look forward to, enjoy, and daydream about since I first started watching when I was fourteen. It is one of those timeless stories that I'll never get tired of, that I've had to share with almost everyone I meet, and that I'll want to introduce to my kids someday, even if the drawing style looks woefully outdated by then. I will never forget how FMA captured my heart and made me better, stronger, softer, and more open. Never ever forget.
TheStrayKitten
When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?
I remember my girlfriend introduced me to the series when we watched the first disc on a portable DVD player in her car on a shopping trip. I didn't really get it at first, but the next thing I knew, I had watched the entirety of FMA-1 and Conquerer of Shamballa in three days. Something about it made me think and wonder further. Only just recently did I rewatch it and really understand the message.

What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?
I think the stories of life and death, wishing to bring someone back to life, regret, is what made me fall in love with FMA. What really pulled me into the story was how simple it all began-- two brothers on a journey, then, how complex it became by the end, becoming something bigger than both of them. Even though you knew it was gonna happen, it did, and it surprised me.

At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?
FMA is about family, friends, loss, redemption, and holding onto the happy memories. I think that's all I need to say, really.

Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?
FMA taught me to try harder to do what I want to do, to let nothing stand in my way.

What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?
I really love the characters, the music, and the heart that Arakawa put into her work-- and everyone else, too. It really shows. My most memorable experience... it's kinda funny... but I had a nightmare about the Gate. I almost didn't get back to sleep wondering what was going to come get me. I wonder if I can do alchemy in my sleep? lol
Blue Sky
I just wanted to say thank you, Dearheart for organizing this event. This is a great way for all of us to share what we love about FMA. smile.gif

I had heard that the deadline was extended to the 29th - did that include this part of the event too? If so, here is my entry. I'm sorry it is so late. X(

1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?

I first discovered Fullmetal Alchemist when the first anime adaptation was airing on the anime block that used to be here in Canada a few years ago. During this time I would be channel surfing on Friday nights and had started watching some of what was on at the time out of boredom, FMA included.

I hadn’t seen much, as I was just starting to get into anime, but what little I saw I thought was interesting. One of the first episodes that I saw I remembered being emotionally stirring for me, which impresses me now that I look back on it since I had never seen or heard of the series previously - and I think I had only caught the last ten minutes! I almost wasn’t sure if I wanted to see more, it seemed like it would’ve been too emotional for me - but I remember being intrigued by how unique and interesting the story and characters were; so I continued to watch it occasionally. These thoughts flowed back to me throughout all the adaptations I came across, from the first anime series, to the manga and to Brotherhood.

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?

I was impressed by how imaginative, unique and well thought out the story, world and characters were. I also liked how it didn't try hard to be like other anime and manga series that I had seen up to that point (that involve standard anime tropes), but it still reflects it’s anime roots in subtle and not so subtle ways. That it is so wonderfully different from other series out there - not just anime/manga. I was amazed when I found out that one person had created such a memorable series and it makes one realize that the greatest stories can come from a single mind.

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?

It is so hard to describe what FMA really is - it is just so much more than what I can form into words. To summarize, I guess I’d have to say that it’s a story about learning from your mistakes, overcoming obstacles, family, love, and life.

4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?

I guess you could say that it reaffirmed important morals that people may need to be reminded of every once in a while - such as doing what is right in your heart, to trust and have faith in those you care about, to live your life’s full potential, facing your fears, learning from past mistakes and never giving up. Although they’re pretty basic morals, they’re still very important things to know in ones life.

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?

I feel that what makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable is how well so many different elements were put together to form something so great. It has everything in a story that I love and it is so well balanced. I only wish I had known of FMA sooner and had been able to share all the experiences that my fellow fans did over the years as a new chapter or episode would be released. I would’ve loved to have been a part of that and I feel that FMA deserves every bit of recognition and love it gets and so much more - for its story, its characters, but most of all - it’s heart. And that is something I’ll never forget.
Heza
1. When and how did you discover Fullmetal Alchemist? How did you first react to it?
It all started in December of 2003. I was looking for some references pictures for drawing out of a Newtype magazine and stumbled on this page with this young kid with blonde hair in a braid wearing a red coat. With him was this suit of armor. xD Just from the character designs I was fascinated. For many months I tried looking for what the series was called, as it didn't have an english title at the time and I couldn't remember the Japanese one for the life of me. Finally a few months later in 2004 I stumbled on a fanart of the blonde kid, found out his name was Edward, the armor was his brother, Alphonse, the series was called Fullmetal Alchemist (YAY I finally knew what it was called!!) and they were looking for the Philosopher's Stone. The Philosopher's Stone?! THE same Philosopher's Stone from Harry Potter?!! 8DDDD I'm in! I started looking for the dvds, but because it wasn't even half-way finished I couldn't find any. Found an episode to download and the very first memory I have of watching it (it was episode 19 with no subtitles no less) is seeing Bradley in blue pajamas with yellow ducks and Hughes in pink pajamas with white flowers. WTF. Yeah, I thought they were gay. XDDD Then it got licensed by Funimation, which made me furious. I was a dub HATER beyond anything. Everything I had seen dubbed sounded so horrible (ala they were all licensed by 4kids). So I bought burned copies with subs up to episode 26 so I could actually watch it before it came out in English; before the bandwagon hit. Fell in love and it never stopped. Romi Paku was the love of my life when it came to voices. Later on, Funi started showing mini interviews with Vic Mignogna, Aaron Dismuke, and Mike McFarland on the main website talking about the series and I looked into it since it seemed they really felt something for the show, which impacts acting quality. So I watched the premiere of the dub and I couldn't believe I had actually seen a dub I actually liked (for something as deep as FMA anyway). When Ed screamed at Rose the "crossing into God's territory" line at the end I had goosebumps, and I ended up watching it 3 more times that same night. This Vic guy was REALLY good. XD I wrote him the next morning to thank him for his work and how FMA was my favorite anime, and couldn't believe he replied back, talking about how far into the series he was in and how much he loved it. By then I had also read everything that was out of the manga, and the newest chapter I read before the dub premiere was Roy vs. Lust. So yeah, it was a big adventure staking it out from looking for what it was even called, to finding downloadable subs, to the series getting licensed, getting the first 26 episodes, reading the manga, and then giving the dub a chance. Then Brotherhood happened. XD

2. What made you fall in love with it? What pulled you into the story?
In the heart of it all, it was the relationship between the characters and how real it felt. I have a younger sister, and when we were young we were all we had when it came to friends. We moved so much I had a hard time getting to know people and was ridiculously shy, and my sister was the only other person I had. So I connected to Ed's and Al's close brotherly love where they would do anything for one another. It's kind of funny because many many years before I always said I would give up an arm and a leg for her. xDDD Wow, I thought this would be lengthy, but that's the one thing that really pulled me in.

3. At its heart, what do you think FMA is really about? What were some themes you saw in it?
Considering I was immersed in the Brotherhood/manga storyline for a lot longer then the story of the original, this comes from the manga (and I connect with it a lot more). I personally loved how the search for the Stone was important, but it took a step back once it was revealed how much Amestris was in danger. I loved how it wasn't just about the brothers, but everyone in the country and involved in this battle against the homunculi. Ed, Al, Roy, Riza, Hohenheim, Armstrong, Olivier, Izumi, Havoc, Fuery, Breda, Falman, Maria Ross, Scar, and even those not part of their country like Ling, Lan Fan, May Chang, and Fu ALL had a part in joining together to protect the country, their people, and their right to live as human beings. It didn't matter who they were or where they came from. They also all grow in their own way beyond that of most other stories I've read/seen. As the new series is titled: Brotherhood. They all fight together to protect what is important to them, but not without sacrifice and loss which is what makes the story such an emotional roller coster. There are so many themes layered under this monster I have a hard time even thinking of remembering them or how to put it into words. Equivalent exchange is something inevitable though. You can't avoid it. Our lives are surrounded by this concept. And with the deadly sins, there's no way to can separate from these negative qualities humans have. It's what makes us human. Obviously we as humans aren't proud of a lot of these that comes from the deadly sins, but we realize the downfalls and negative impacts if we don't recognize them.

4. Did FMA teach you anything? Were there any morals or philosophies in it that really stuck with you or impacted your life?
I'm not really sure if the story taught me anything, but it most definitely brought back many morals and beliefs I feel strongly about; even the tiny things many wouldn't notice. In this crazy world where people have this strong incredible power connected with science there are those little gems you find underneath it all. I have a younger sister, and though we have our arguments and disagreements, we are pretty much inseparable. I would do anything for her. There are people who suffer from the result of war, being a part of that war, maybe even taking a life even though they didn't want to. The nightmares and fears from taking those lives and as a result trying to repent or do what you can to make up for it. They celebrate something as simple as a birthday and spending time with those you love. Enjoying the taste of food and being grateful you're alive. And I do believe in equivalent exchange. Nothing with happen unless you put in the effort. All of these things, no matter how big or small, people recognize, and it's all over this incredible series.

5. What makes FMA so awesome and unforgettable? In your whole experience of being an FMA fan, what will you never forget?
Never have I fell in love with so many characters in one series. Sure, Roy Mustang is my favorite and always will be, but I love every single character. That's one of the biggest reasons I never got bored reading the manga or watching Brotherhood. Ed was absent for a while. No biggie, because now we get to see so-and-so and their part of the story. Everything described above is what makes this series unforgettable. And it doesn't help that the music for both series is downright unbelievable, the animation is gorgeous (I can't get enough of the lamp posts on the streets in Brotherhood), and the acting is amazing as a whole. I'm not sad that it's finished, because it is so unforgettable.

On a more personal ground, it's because of the opportunity to meet some of the most wonderful people I've met, whether they are other fans of the series or they were in it. I find it incredibly weird that I once loathed the idea of this series being dubbed into english, Vic becomes a juggernaut of a voice actor originating on his role of Edward (though I was a fan of his before FMA was out in english), I spent three years of my life dreaming to meet him just once in my life, and now he and Michele, his incredibly amazing fiancee, are close friends of mine. XD I'm a dedicated officer for the Rangers, and if it weren't for this group I wouldn't have met some of my very best friends. I also think about the fact that a lot of the voice actors for Funimation were really new with voice acting when FMA started, most notably from my memory Travis Willingham, since Roy was his first large role. Literally hearing his improvement over the years and then returning to Brotherhood, bringing in the experience he's had since. Wow. And not to mention he and the lovely Laura Bailey are now happily married! Realizing what has happened over the years since becoming a fan has made me realize A LOT has happened since. XD But yeah, if it weren't for this series I wouldn't have met all these incredible people, and that's something I would never forget.
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