Sunday, November 27, 2011

Last Exile: Ginyoku no Fam - 07

Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 04 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 10 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 36

It’s funny, but the one character in this series that still does absolutely nothing for me is the one whose name is in the title.

I enjoyed this episode quite a bit – in fact I’d rank it as the second best after episode three (which for me stands far above any other so far). The two episodes have some distinct commonalities, but the most important for me is that both have a weightiness and dignity that have otherwise been more lacking than my tastes would prefer. Too often, “Fam” has undercut the interesting and complex plot it’s laid out with a somewhat flippant and too buoyant (ironic, that one) tone. Series where the characters smile non-stop are never better for it, but it’s especially a problem when they ask you to take them seriously. Eden of the East is another show that suffered from this, to some extent.

It’s for those reasons among others that I enjoy episodes where Fam’s plucky cheerfulness is mercifully muted, and the characters are reminded of the life-and-death nature of the game they’ve chosen to play. As we continue to see Nazi allusions in the Ades Federation – Gloria Augusta! - this time the government stealing confiscating the valuables and treasures from all those nasty traitors who aren’t pure Ades by blood – little Augusta Sara is realizing that having people killed on your watch weighs heavily on the conscience. With things on the South shore of the Grand Lake under control, Luscinia and his team are setting their sights on the North Shore and the mysterious and notoriously reclusive nation of Glacies – a country I suspect we’ll be hearing much, much more about in coming weeks.

Speaking of Glacies, LE fans everywhere felt their pulse quicken when Tatiana mentioned “Vincent”. That can only be Vincent Alzey, captain of Urbanus, overall badass, and friend to Alex Row (Alex, why did you have to die? Why???) and Sophia, who’s apparently been dispatched on some sort of negotiation with the Glacies government, if such a thing is even possible given that nation’s hostility to outsiders. As The Silvius turns for Glacies to see how things are going, Fam and Gisey are off to finish out their contract with a bang, planning to steal eight Ades ships instead of just the one they need to make their quota. This segment was an improvement, too, as it served as a reminder that not everyone in the Ades Fleet is an idiot and sometimes caution is better than genki enthusiasm.

This time it was Gisey – who was also homesick and worried about her family – who felt something was wrong with Fam’s plan to steal the eight ships confiscated from conquered nations being transported to Ades. It seems too easy – though Fam has no hesitations, and neither do Atamora and the rest of the air pirates, independently having decided to target the same ships. Everyone is walking (well, flying) into a trap (if only they’d had Admiral Ackbar on their side), with the Ades Third Fleet waiting for them. These are real Ades ships under a real commander, too, and not the rubes and simpletons Fam has been picking off ships from. It’s good to see Gisey’s caution proved right, and Fam’s thoughtless enthusiasm shown to be reckless and dangerous for a change – frankly, she’s been getting off a little too easy as her skills and strategic ability are no match for her eagerness. And it’s also nice to see a focus on a character who’s actually feeling a sense of responsibility to their family and not just a lust for adventure. But there’s one last reminder that even Gisey may be in over her head, as the careless girls are followed all the way back to The Silvius by the Ades First Fleet (also a part of Luscinia’s plan from the start, no doubt) which puts Tatiana in an extremely difficult and perilous position given that they’re hosting the Turan “Government in Exile”.

Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 17 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 18 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 21
Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 23 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 24 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 25
Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 26 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 27 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 29
Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 32 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 33 Last Exile Ginyoku no Fam - 07 - Large 34


7 comments:

  1. I have full confidence in Tatiana and the Sylvius. While they may not be able to take out the entire Ades fleet by themselves, the ship isn't built for speed for nothing. I do expect a good battle though.

    Gisey's worried about more than just "family", she's also definitely feeling like Milia's taking Fam from her. See her reaction when Fam says they'll be back to Milia soon. Gisey is jealous, and she knows it. She's not happy about that either.

    BTW, whats the name of Augusta Sara's attendant lady? I'm very curious to see what they do with her, she's the only person Sara seems capable of dropping her guard around.

    ReplyDelete
  2. @Fencedude

    I think you mean Vasant. It's interesting to note that, judging form one of the off-hand conversations in the last episode, her country (Keios) was resisting Ades at one point.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is my favorite episode. The animation was simply beautiful and we got some very decent character developments too. It has always bothered me quite a bit that Fam was more than willing to stake all her chips for Millia so it's great to see some reserve from Giselle's part. As you've pointed out, it's only normal that a girl her age would be homesick and it's great that this hasn't been overlooked by the writers.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Giselle won me in the episode! Finally a voice of reason, I've been enjoying the show thus far but Fam's tendency to plow through things like a raging bull was getting a little wearisome. I also found that spot towards the end where she had Gisey type the message to her father that they wouldn't be back because "Millia needs her" incredibly selfish! Is Giselle not allowed to be needed too? By her family at that …

    Eh my personal opinion of Fam is kind of sliding. I hope poor Gisey really speaks her mind at some point. Probably won't be next week tho, pretty sure their internal strife is gonna have to take a backseat … seeing as they've now got a HUGE ASS Ades warship to contend with.

    ReplyDelete
  5. *this not the *kicks typo*

    ReplyDelete
  6. I like this series. I also liked the original Last Exile. I wonder if we will see other characters from the 1st season as the series progresses. I wonder what Lavy has been doing all this time?

    ReplyDelete
  7. You can read the "bridge" manga for some idea of what she and Claus (and Al and Holly) have been up to.

    ReplyDelete