While there were many standout anime series in the 2000′s, the one that had everything going for it and rose to the cream of the crop would have to be the series Full Metal Alchemist by studio Bones.
Full Metal Alchemist is the tale of two brothers, Edward and Alphonse Elric who are in search of the fabled “Philosopher’s Stone.” The stone is said to have extraordinary powers, and the boys intend to use the stone in order to correct a tragic accident that happened to them after their failed attempt to bring back their departed mother using the mysterious powers of alchemy.
The accident left Alphonse without a body and Edward without a left leg, but Edward in a desperate attempt to save both his brother and himself from a tragic fate, sacrificed his right arm so that he could place Alphonse’s soul into a vessel of armor.
The anime series ran for a full 51 episodes and was written by Sh Aikawa, and directed by Seiji Mizushima. The series was broadcast on TBS, Mainichi Broadcasting System, and Animax in Japan from October 4, 2003 to October 2, 2004.
The series had everything that makes up an excellent anime series including a good mix of characters that you could actually care about, an interesting premise for a story, and of course the series also had some comedic, light hearted moments.