Shou Tucker is a character from the anime/manga series Fullmetal Alchemist. Known as the Sewing-Life Alchemist among the Amestrian Military, Tucker is a reknowned bio-alchemist who specialises in creating Chimera. While appearing to be mild-mannered and shy, this is merely a façade that covers the fractured psyche of a desperate and selfish man, as the Elric brothers discover when they take up temporary residence with Tucker and his daughter Nina as they begin their journey to become State Alchemists.
Manga and 2009 anime Edit
In the Fullmetal Alchemist manga and in the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood anime series, Shou Tucker allows Edward and Alphonse Elric to stay with him whilst they are studying to become State Alchemists. Tucker had gained a bit of notoriety and earned his State Alchemist's License two years prior to the series by producing a chimera capable of human speech. Ed and Al begin visiting Tucker at his estate to pore over his library of texts and forge a bit of a friendly relationship with the Sewing-Life Alchemist as well as his young daughter Nina and their dog Alexander, though Tucker's wife was said to have left the family two years before. Tucker explains to the Elrics that bio-alchemy, especially in the field of chimeric research is experimental at best and results in a large number of failures and false starts. Tucker himself notes that, ever since the speaking chimera that earned him his license, he has yet to present an alchemical breakthrough worthy of his yearly State Alchemist assessment and fears that a failure this year will cost him his certification and research privileges.
When Tucker reveals to the Elric brothers that he has finally managed to create another speaking chimera, Edward quickly perceives that Tucker has bypassed the impediments of artificially creating a being capable of comprehending and vocalizing speech by instead alchemically merging a live human with an animal - in this case Nina and Alexander and in the previous case, his wife. Tucker coldly confirms Edward's gruesome suspicions, to which Edward responds violently. The Sewing-Life Alchemist taunts Fullmetal between blows, stating that the two alchemists are alike in their sacrilege - that Edward's attempt to steal his mother's life back from the grave and Tucker's use of his family's lives to further his research are both indicative of scientific minds that seek knowledge despite any preconceived taboos attached.
Unable to reverse the damage that Tucker has done to Nina, the Elrics have no choice but to leave the estate and report the incident to Colonel Mustang, who places Sewing-Life under house arrest with his daughter until he is to be tried in Central City. But before Lieutenant Colonel Maes Hughes and Major Alex Louis Armstrong arrive in East City to take him into custody, the mysterious Scar appears by breaking into the estate and murdering Shou Tucker along with his mutated Chimera daughter.
2003 anime Edit
In the 2003 FMA series, instead of being murdered by Scar, Tucker is arrested and supposedly executed for his crime. In truth, however, he was put to work in Laboratory 5 as both a researcher and experimental subject. At some unknown point, he is transformed into a chimera after being merged with an unidentified animal.
When the Elric brothers investigate Lab 5, Edward encounters Tucker and is disgusted to see him alive. Since the death of his daughter, Tucker worked non-stop to try and bring her back in chimera form, failing every time. One of these failures resulted in a rebound, turning the alchemist into a chimera himself. During this time, Tucker also created several non-Nina chimera and acts as their master. In cooperation with the homunculi, he attempts to trick Edward into fashioning a Philosopher's Stone out of prison inmates, hoping that the homunculi will help create a new homunculus body for Nina with his memories as the foundation of her new soul. Paranoid and very unstable, Tucker joined up with anyone who could offer him the protection needed to complete his goal. He joined with Greed's group briefly, most likely on the promise that he could give the homunculus the immortality that he so desired, as well as serve as a doctor to the other chimera working with Greed.
After the demise of Greed and his followers, Shou accepted Frank Archer's offer to rejoin the military under his command with alacrity. Using his new-found military privileges in return for building an army of chimera for Archer and the Führer, Tucker used his research to create lifeless dolls in Nina's image. Learning that Al became a vessel for the Philosopher's Stone, he deceived the boy by offering to teach him how to master the Stone; in reality, he only wanted to use Al to transmute a fully-human Nina from his chimera-dolls. Though Tucker succeeded in the first flawless human transmutation, Sloth pointed out that Tucker's will was not strong enough to bind Nina's soul into the new body made for her. With his hopes shattered, this bit of information drove Tucker into further madness. He was last seen drawing alchemy arrays on a wall with the Nina doll in his arms, either bent on bringing his daughter back or trying to relive the happy times before his daughter became a victim of his research.
Shou has the appearance of a bespectacled middle-aged man, having little in the ways of muscle or height and his receding hairline leaving him only with a small amount of brown hair. He has only been shown wearing a single outfit, that of a faded green open collared shirt with sleeves that he keeps rolled up to his elbows, and a second black shirt underneath. When around others he maintains a mildly content expression, however in private he is often more downcast and anxious.
In his chimera form, Shou appears to have the body of a large animal like a bear, though what exact animal he was fused with is never stated. His head appears to be upside down. Upon further inspection, it appears that Tucker's head and torso were attached to the animal body from the back. Tucker also has long pointed ears in this form, indicating that he may have been fused with some kind of canine creature.
Shou initially comes off as a soft-spoken man, often preferring to keep to himself rather then socialise. When having guests, he does put on a polite persona and appears to be quite kind. However as his daughter Nina had begun to notice, he was more often engrossed with his work than his family.
In reality, Shou suffered from a lack of confidence due to his research not producing any viable results and was a very desperate, selfish man. In order to get his qualification as a State Alchemist, he was willing to sacrifice his wife and later his own daughter in order to maintain it from fear of returning to a life of poverty and regret. After his atrocities were unveiled, Shou showed a notable lack of remorse for his actions and instead claimed it was merely the advancement of science, focused solely on remaining a State Alchemist.