Posted by psgels on 3 March 2012 with categories: Last Exile - Ginyoku no Fam

Hah! Now this is more like it. This episode had really little action, and yet it’s my favorite Ginyoku no Fam episode in quite a while now. It had this genuine warmth that I have been missing for a while now, it was different from the previous episodes and offered some variety, there was a lot of focus on the different politics of this series and again Fam knew her role and wasn’t shoved at the center stage.

With this episode I realized that the previous episodes of this series have been a tad monotone, and really needed a bit more variety than what they have shown so far. Probably the big culprit of that was how this show had to focus on cute girls and all. This episode also finally developed the themes of war further. Thins really got resolved now, yet at the same time the ending of this episode showed how fragile peace can be. It was a particularly good twist to have the Gracien girl try to assassinate the big bad guy, and Lilliane’s death definitely made an impact, especially considering how she consciously sacrificed herself. Also, Fam is a princess.

The next episodes have a tough question to answer: why was that necessary? I mean, with Shangri-La it always was obvious that Kuniko was special in the way that the villain was intereseted in her. Here though, I’m not sure what the purpose of all of this is other than making Fam feel special. This is episode 20, there are only three or four episodes left. It feels tacked on at this point.

What also worries me a bit is that we still haven’t gotten any new information about new Gonzo projects. The sales of the second volume of the DVD were about as much as the first volume (around 3000 copies), which thankfully isn’t the disaster that was Shangri-La’s record, but still means that Gonzo probably made some losses, having also financed a lot of this project themselves. However, what are their plans for the rest of the year? They’re awfully quiet, considering taht they should be nearly done with Last Exile here.

The impression I get from watching Last Exile is that most of Gonzo’s talented animators went over to David Production, along with a bunch of producers (you can really see Gonzo’s boldness in a lot of David Production’s projects), while Gonzo’s 3D department, the part at which they were the most innovative, remained at their side, along with most of their bad animators (the badly animated parts of this series are animated in the exact same way tht other badly animated Gonzo shows were). It’d be a shame for them to go bankrupt anyway.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

14 Responses

  1. Sol says:

    That’s the entire problem with this series. The creators keep trying to justify Fam Fan Fart’s existence by making her seem special (a princess, in this case), but it just ain’t working. George Lucas would probably have better luck making a Jedi out of Jar Jar Binks.

    What a painful way for Gonzo to die.

  2. meow says:

    Need proper subs. I saw this on Animax but the subs tended to cut out. Everything seemed okay for me up to the part where Lil tries to explain her’s and Luc’s motivations, which made no sense to me based on the subs I had. I’m trying to hope that there was some kind of translation error but if the subs are correct….there really is no justification for what Luc and Lil are doing, yet somehow they act like they’re perfectly in the right. And somehow Lil’s sister seems to get it. And Lil gets to sacrifice herself for Luc and gets a touching martyr’s death, complete with flashbacks. Somebody explain to me what just happened cos I just feel trolled. Was there any buildup throughout the series about the state the planet was in, according to them? Other than Sara having to eat plain grains for her meals? Or is this something they just pulled out of the blue to save the villains for some reason? This is my wtf moment.

  3. brianwuzhere says:

    Wait…so what episode is this actually supposed to be? Cause MAL lists only 21 episodes.

    • Scruffy says:

      The 21 episodes is probably excluding the 2 recaps, so in effect 23 episodes in total

      • Myssa Rei says:

        Actually it seems that there are only 21 “normal” episodes, plus the pre-launch episode (episode 0, the one with the commentary) and the two recaps to round things off to 24.

  4. tktym says:

    *sigh* I haven’t watershed this show in a while but. . .by reading psgels blog, I think its a little too late for gonzo, especially after screwing up one of their best franchises. . . its a shame really, this show could have been rediculously epic, and they didn’t even have to make new characters to do that! They could have hired a competent writer, used the same characters and it would have been epic AND filled the whole “cute girls for otaku to masturbate to quota” I mean if you are going to risk your WHOLE studio on something, at least go all the way and not just half assuredly do it. Bankruptcy for gonzo is a good thing for the industry and market, bad companies fail only for other more competent companies to take their place, and hire the talented people that were in the failed company. Imagine if David production had did this instead. Shit would have been amazing!

    . . . .well at least I still have my Last exile 1 dvds. . .maybe Ill watch that again this week.

    • tktym says:

      Edit: LOL at behest of a friend who also thinks this show is garbage, I checked out Animesukis forums. . .GOD its just like the Anime version of Narutofan.com just rabid fanboyism/fangirlism everywhere its hilarious! I couldn’t read more than two pages of the garbage trying to defend bad shows without laughing out loud at the Stupidity there, so hilarious

      • hikari says:

        Agreed with psgels, there’s still many companies worse than Gonzo but they sell like hotcakes cuz of their strong fanbase..coughcough..AIC-P4,Haganai, Deen’s bishies-otome games crap(and there’s going to be a lot more of it this year,trust me), those harem animes by other studios,etc2…No matter how bad you think Fam is, it’s still a lot better than those stuff I mentioned above, plus at least Gonzo still put efforts in their animation although w/ limited budget(CG’s, Background arts,etc). Too bad they didn’t hire a good writer to write what’s supposed to be a great sequel from a wonderful epic franchise, but believe me it’s still better than many mediocre/crap stuffs nowdays that ironically sold very2 well(GC, Haganai, etc…and I’m sure High School DxD will sell well, too).

      • Myssa Rei says:

        Actually if you haven’t noticed, folk in Animesuki easily call bad shows, well, bad shows. However just because a show is ‘bad’ doesn’t mean that you can’t have a discussion on it. I mean, Guilty Crown discussions aren’t boring, that’s for sure!

    • psgels psgels says:

      I’m not sure whether I really get that “bad companies fail for other companies to take their place”. I mean, one of the worst big companies out there isn’t Gonzo, but AIC IMO, and they still sell like hotcakes, and who says that once a company does go bankrupt, the bad staff also doesn’t get rehired?

  5. skyhack says:

    I’ve always liked Gonzo, I’d hate to see ‘em go.

    They’ve done some pretty cool stuff over the years, and they take a lot of risks. They wrote Last Exile in-house, and it aired in a 2 a.m. time slot in Japan. No way could that work. It sold anyway, even with its fractured, unexplained ending. (Oh, that’s not Mullen’s kid, it’s Dunya’s little brother?)

    They seemingly randomized Full Metal Panic’s story, and it sold anyway, as well.

    Maybe they’re just good at coming back from the brink, they’ve done it so much.

    I just wish they’d get better stories to back up Range Murata’s art with. I’d hate to have to try to buy back copies of Robot to get my fix!

  6. esha25 says:

    I called it last week, albeit in a spolish way. This is a series that was overloaded with princesses to begin with. It didn’t need another in the form of Fam to resurrect the series/character. Where the F!@# are the writers from the original series? Seriously? Do they have any idea what the fanbase and popular viewing audiences want? It is not another princess that is for sure.

  7. foamer says:

    So many people have lost their lives in this war and they decide to have a banquet afterward? yes i know it was to celebrate peace and all but seriously whose idea was that?! it just seems inappropriate and distasteful.

  8. dm00 says:

    Wow, a few more episodes like this would go a long way to making this an excellent series.

    This episode showed that this show had so much promise. For 18 episodes Lilliana has been off in Luscinia’s clutches, and all we’ve gotten are glimpses of her: no sense of her motives, no real assurance she wasn’t under some sort of hypnotic spell. Heavens, we’ve seen almost as much of Lavie. Perhaps one or two fewer vanship races, and maybe a little time adding depth to Luscinia and Lilliana?

    And… what’s Dio’s role in all this? Or the Silvius? I foresee a lot of stuff crammed into the next couple of episodes.

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  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Mar 2. 2015 01:29 AM)
    Late to this one but
    @BrendanVGC, that’s kinda tough. See there is a huge amount of very different manga that fall under the category “Seinien” You would kinda need to give us a more focused genre to work with here. Like horror, action etc.
    And pretty sure death note is shounen.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 07:35 AM)
    Damon I am more used to seeing in a drama or comedy role I reckon rather than an action hero.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 07:24 AM)
    Eric Bana is so underated =<
    I want to see more of the man on film.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 05:52 AM)
    The story would’ve been much more anchored and believable if the social imbalance wasn’t portrayed so heavy-handedly. It makes no sense for every house in Elysium to have a healing-bed that completely restores you and they dint bother to put a single one on Earth to keep the working class happy and healthy. I mean, c’mon now.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 05:49 AM)
    Yeah the action sequences were the best parts of Elysium. I don’t k ow, I just don’t feel Matt Damon in these roles anymore and I hope they stayed with Eric Bana like the rumors were hinting; that probably would’ve made it a more personal story.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 04:55 AM)
    Its been too long since I saw district 9 to have an accurate opinion on it.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 04:54 AM)
    I can remember giving higher points to elysium when I saw it first because I really needed/wanted to see an R rated action movie. But apart from Sharlto Copley as the villain it was in hindsight fairly miscast, the ending was quite poor and the script could have been improved on, I liked the robots/action scenes however.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 04:20 AM)
    I have a feeling that the movie’s gonna suck tho. District 9 was good, Elysium was a mess and Chappie looks like a Short Circuit ripoff with nothing new to add. I have respect for Blomkamp since he started as an animator and probably has respect for the medium and a good eye for aesthetics, by he’s doing progressively more conventional stuff as his career goes on.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 01:41 AM)
    Ha, so I wasn’t wrong when I came across that film Chappie and thinking that the robot resembled Briareos from appleseed, the director’s a fan of Masume Shirow’s work apparently.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Mar 1. 2015 12:16 AM)
    @Brendan: That completely hinges on your personal taste, but Vagabond is one of the best Chanbara ones around, with superb art, fast pacing and entertaining storyline. Berserk should go without saying as it’s a codifier for many Seinen conventions, but Vinland Saga is another great series which is in similar vein. Biomega and Drifters are also worth a look.

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