Sweet Child of Mine – Last Exile: Fam, the Silver Wing Episode 2

A precious last moment, bittersweet, but bit cheesy.

As Liliana noted at the end of episode 1, the Turian nation has no time to wait around; they must make their move on the Ades Federation before they reach the capital of Iglasia. Episode 2 takes little time to move onto the next course of action in the story, and the results are absolutely devastating for our heroes. In two episodes, Silver Wing has seen more extreme story developments than its original series counterpart.

Summary

The Turian nation enlists the help of the Sky Pirates in order to launch a counter-attack on the Ades Federation Fleet as they head towards Iglasia. Princess Liliana orders Fam and Giselle to escort Milia to her father to inform him of the assault. After the king entrusts Milia to Fam and Giselle’s care, Dio informs them that the Lasa’s counterattack failed and Lusciana’s assistant Alauda killed the entire crew, spiriting Liliana back to the Ades flagship Impetus. The three fly into the Impetus, and confronts Luscinia, who tells them about the Exile. He recites a Mysteria, activating one of the Exile ships from above, which destroys Iglasia.

Where to go from here...

 Let’s take a look at how badly shit hit the fan in only two episodes:

1. Instead of successfully negotiating peace, the Ades Federation declares war on the Turian nation, sinking their flagship Lasa.
2. Lasa’s counter-attack fails horribly, and Luscinia uses the Exile to destroy the capital city.

Compared to the original Last Exile, Silver Wing leaves the protagonists in an utterly hopeless situation. For those who haven’t seen the original series, here’s what happened in two episodes:

1. The good guy fleet (Anatoray) engages in a victorious battle with the bad guys (Disith), but get ambushed by a cowardly sneak attack.
2. The main protagonists, Claus and Lavie, deliver a letter via vanship to the Anatoray Duke, convincing him to withdraw from battle.

Despite being an excellent series overall, the original series’ main fault was that it started off a little too slowly, not actually picking up until episode 6-7, when Dio and the Guild makes their appearance known.

Silver Wing is amazingly quick to develop its story, perhaps to a fault. There’s plenty of questions that need to be answered, particularly questions raised by viewers who haven’t watched the first series. While I did say last week that watching the first series isn’t necessary, I stand by that statement, as those questions would still remain half-answered even if one watches the original.

You don't need to watch the original series to know that Dio is utterly badass.

Other than Dio and Exile itself, everything in the show is completely new, and even in this stage of the series, Exile is already shown in a different light than it has been in the original. In the first series, Exile was depicted as a macguffin used to wrestle control away from the bad guys. In Silver Wing, the enemy already controls Exile, making them the equivalent of the Empire and their sinister Death Star, except that in this case, there is a possibility that Luscinia is able to control multiple Exiles at once, meaning that he has at least 6 death stars at his command. It’s quite ridiculous, and immensely exciting at once. How will the lowly trio of Fam, Giselle, and Milia, overcome such improbable obstacles?

Milia gets a significant amount of spotlight in this episode, and I can already see the torches and pitchforks from the audience asking for her head. Early on, she’s annoyingly whiny, and her moment with her father was a bit on the cheesy side; I personally thought the scene was fine, but knowing my tastes in relation to the rest of the anime-watching community, it translates into ridiculous. However, when the three girls are in the elevator shaft inside the Impetus, Milia symbolically let her hair down, and it coincided really well with the “belly of the beast” moment within the episode.

The figurative beast in this case is the Impetus itself, and the entire scene where the vanship navigates through its innards is utterly remarkable. Knowing that this show is aired inJapanin 3D, I can’t help but feel utter jealousy in missing the enhanced visual effects coming from this show. I’ve always been a fan of the conspicuous CGI style that Gonzo used for this show, and when Avatar made its rounds through American pop culture, I’ve immediately thought of the prospect of 3D anime for shows with CGI like Exile’s. Years later, those thoughts have been realized, and I am at a loss for words at how amazing this show could look like.

Last Exile's signature CGI is back, potentially mindblowing in 3D.

With the advent of 3D home theatre technology, I can only hope that when Silver Wing makes it to western shores, it will be available in 3D-optional Blu-Ray. I would seriously buy a specialized TV just for this show.

3D rant aside, I want to get back to Milia for the rest of the post, because I can see her being a polarizing character. As a whole, I think that there’s a lot going for her from this episode onwards. Despite having an initial impression of her being a bratty princess, she is starting to turn around a bit. After her hair-down moment, she set herself on freeing her sister, and in the bridge of the Impetus, she gave off an air of control, aiming the gun at Luscinia, and even firing with competent accuracy.

If it weren’t for Luscinia going “fuck your shit, I’m going Majora’s Mask on your city,” I would have been convinced that she had turned the corner. However, the story being as awesome as it is, throws another obstacle at her, and by the end of the episode, she curdles up at what appears to be a bloodiedGrandLakeand weeps for her loss. For once, I am actually convinced of her tears. She lost an entire city. She lost her father. Her sister is kidnapped. She has nowhere to go. I am really rooting for her to turn things around, with the help of Fam and Giselle, who seem to have their own backstories creeping up very subtly in this episode.

The next episode is calledLight Square, which relates to the white squares on a chess board, which alternate with black ones. In chess, control of light squares is related to a strategy of zone control, which allows the player to keep a positional advantage as he develops his pieces towards the later stage of the game. This suggests that we’ll finally get a reprieve episode next week and perhaps get a chance to develop Fam and Giselle’s backstory a little bit more. I look forward to it greatly, as I’ve come to greatly appreciate Aki Toyosaki’s voice acting here as Fam. She keeps the same timbre of voice as Yui from K-ON, but performed in a more adventurous tone.

Hokago Steam Time: Fam (Guitar), Milia (Bass), and Giselle (Drums). Budokan or bust!

Fun things are fun, and even though Fam, Giselle, and Milia are in a tough spot, I’m having a ridiculously fun time watching this series. Easily my favourite show this season.

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5 thoughts on “Sweet Child of Mine – Last Exile: Fam, the Silver Wing Episode 2”

  1. “Knowing that this show is aired inJapanin 3D…”

    WHAT? Holy sheep, GONZO went all out this time. I’ve kept faith in them since Vandread, hope they will show what they can really do.

    1. Yeah. That whole sequence where Fam’s vanship flies through the machinery inside the Impetus just reeks of 3D effects porn. Imagine the gears, shafts, and pipes flying into your face. It’s quite ridiculous. This might not be the first time something’s been broadcast with 3D TV in mind, but at the end of the day, I can imagine that this show will be the flagbearer for such titles.

  2. 1) I was in utter lost for the second half of the episode since I never got a chance to watch the first season even though I have the DVD stored away somewhere. So reading this post kinda explained a few things.

    2) I didn’t know they make this in 3D! Animax is showing this show and since I have a specialized 3D TV, I should probably starts taking note the schedule for this show on Animax.

    3) Since I didn’t watch the first season, I thought Dio was a woman until someone corrected me in my first impression post. Why the hell he has a woman voice >_<

    1. 1) thanks! I’m going to try to put in some details from season 1, but just bits and pieces that really don’t reveal anything about the plot. I’d rather just encourage people to watch the first series and enjoy it for themselves if they’re curious enough.

      2) You’d be so fortunate to be able to watch it in 3D. That second half was remarkable!

      3) It’s probably because he looks/talks somewhat femininely that even the guys want him >.>

  3. Your Silver Wing reviews are so great and make me want to watch the series again NOW! I’ve seen you’ve taken a break from anime blogging, but would love to hear what you think of Horizon on the Middle of Nowhere? I was so excited to find an anime I felt had a lot in common with Last Exile – it’s brilliant!

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