Last Exile: Fam of the Silver Wing 1 ~ I can almost grab the clouds!
October 18, 2011
The sequel to Last Exile, Last Exile: Ginyoku no Fam (Fam of the silver wing), hereafter, Fam has premiered. It is a steampunk adventure tale. Two young women fly through the skies as part of a pirate group, and have an adventure with princesses and stuff. Scamp has already commented on how this latest installment seems lighter in tone than the original. I agree, and I also agree that Last Exile supplies something that recent anime hasn’t delivered.
Old school anime used to be full of Space Opera: Science Fiction series about great civilizations in conflict. Shows like Harlock, Banner of the Stars, and Legend of the Galactic Heroes were big adventure tales, with extended battle sequences. Most recent Science Fiction in anime is smaller in scope (like Steins;Gate, an extreme example that focuses on a single invention, or No. 6, and Guilty Crown that look at a single civilization that is at war with itself). The Last Exile franchise bucks that trend, by showing battles at grand scales like classic Science Fiction anime, like Macross used to deliver, but with a steampunk twist. Here the fleets are not starships, but sky ships.
This first episode introduces us to some characters including the good-natured people of Turan who are losing a war against the Ades Federation. The princesses are introduced in the midst of religious ritual, The pious princess Liliana drinks water from the Grand Lake, and prays:
O, Grand Lake, everlasting water of righteousness,
We ask that you bless the water, earth, and wind
So that we may receive their great bounty.
The treacherous Ades Federation pretend to agree to participate in Peace talks, but use the opportunity to launch a sneak attack on Turan.
They already have hinted that Dios is a special person to the plot, because of a couple of oddities, including a flashback in which someone who looks like an older Dios assists princess Liliana as a young girl, and what appeared to be a spaceship entering the atmosphere, that only he seems to be aware of.
This show is off to a pretty good start. The original Last Exile had an edge that Fam lacks, because it dwelled on the sad realities of war, as seen through the eyes of the pawns manipulated by the battlefield strategists. Regardless, I’m looking forward to more of Fam. It is just too much fun to watch pirates soaring through the skies, and huge flotilla’s of sky ships battle each other.