「Illegal move」

A lot happened this week on Fam, including the long-awaited first appearance by yet another legendary character from the original series. But in introducing her, a new mystery was created involving two even more important characters via the passing words of Dio.

I’m not crazy about the re-casting of Alvis E. Hamilton with Kana Hanazawa, though a new seiyuu may have been inevitable since the original, Shiraki Anna (who was only 13 at the time of the series) hasn’t done any voice work since. Still, using KanaHana hints at the kind of otaku pandering that has infiltrated the series in many ways. She’s certainly a capable actress and I’m sure she’ll do fine, but it still feels a bit off to me. Be that as it may, it was nice to see Al again, though I’m not crazy about her new outfit. She should be about 13 now, and she appears in the company of Dio, who introduces her to the others as a controller of “The Anatoray Exile”. The implications are clear, and if there were any doubt the fact that she was the one thing Vincent fled the Sylvius with later in the episode – tucked under the arm like a loaf of bread – proves she’s of massive important to the future plans of the Alliance.

Of most interest to me, though, was Dio’s offhand comment about “all the people she’s lost”. If you’re following the “Hourglass” manga at all that line should have at least made you a little nervous, and it’s Claus and Lavie who remain the elephant in the room – curiously absent in both word and deed (and then there’s Holly Mad-Thane as well, though she’s of lesser interest). I don’t know how long this is going to continue to be teased, though I hope it’s addressed sooner rather than later because it feels a bit of a stunt to leave it hanging the way it currently is. For now Al appears to be a side player though she was conspicuously added to the intro montage of the OP.

It was nice to see Vincent given a meaty role to play, bringing some legendary Urbanus coffee to the feast to celebrate the official union between Anatoray-Disith and Turan (though the younger set didn’t seem to care much for the “adult taste"”). Alas this party was crashed by the Ades Fleet, headed by no less than Luscinia himself. But it was his passenger that made the biggest impression – no less than Princess Lilliana herself. She appears to torpedo all of Millia’s efforts by announcing an alliance with Luscinia (and later even orders her flagship to fire on the Sylvius with her sister on board). Something is obviously off here, though just what – brainwashing, body-switching, hidden motives – isn’t clear at all. With the remaining Turan soldiers willing to take orders from Lilliana – who is their rightful leader after all – The Sylvius is under attack, and all those ships Fam and Gisey scrounged up as well. But at least Millia resists the temptation to go along with her sister’s plans, so in addition to having its land stolen Turan now appears to be in a state of civil war as well.

Civil war looks to be a Guild issue too, as Dio recognizes Alauda – on-board The Sylvius with his death squad in a stealth attack – as a fellow Guild member. With Ades attacking, Fam flees with Gisey and Millia (what – you’re just leaving Teddy behind?) to try and go into hiding, but they fall under attack from Luscinia’s forces. It seems obvious that the Glacies forces, who’ve been watching but not participating – are going to step in and save them, likely as an act of repayment for their rescue earlier. Vincent has been advised by Atamora that Glacies is his most important potential ally, so you know that’s going to be a major factor going forward. Ades has put the sky pirates under attack as well, taking the fight to their home base with potentially disastrous results.

After last week’s recap episode, I continue to be a bit nervous about Gonzo’s financial wherewithal to finish this series in high style. The cel animation was quite a bit off this week – character faces lost a lot of detail and accuracy, not just in background but even in a few close-ups as well. The CG looked a bit less fluid as well. Dio’s light sabre duel with Alauda looked very good, but the rest of the ep not so much. If it were another studio I wouldn’t worry so much about a little normal fluctuation, but it isn’t another studio – and Last Exile is a series that’s pretty dependent on visual impressions to create its magic.




    1. Fam isn’t good at physical combat or the brightest/smartest either. She’s not the best vanguard pilot either. That’s why there are other characters who shine and exceed in those roles.

      Examples: Dio stepping in to fight Alauda. Gisey’s vast knowledge of ships. Tatiana winning against Fam.

  1. When Alvis was first shown on screen, I really thought that she was Holly Mad Thane. Guess I was just misled by her new look and long hair. Heck, each time I saw her in the intro when she was in the wheat field I always thought it was Holly, with Alvis already present in the green dress earlier in the opening sequence. Dio’s words also had me feeling anxious, wondering just who is the precious someone that Alvis lost. And was I the only one who was annoyed yet again at how idiotic that Fam can be at times, with her idea of storming into the new Lasas to kidnap Queen Lilliana? Even though she seems to be in a tight spot with a leaking fuel tank while 3 guild fighters are hot on her tail, we all know she’ll survive probably with the help of those Glacies pilots. Heck, her luck must be rank EX with how blessed by the heavens she seems to be, leaving Riders luck at getting that limited edition game way in the shade lol.

  2. I had thought that Fam and Luscinia (“the butcher”) would never meet; that her involvement would
    be secondary and more in the background to the greater conflict at hand. I called that wrong.
    But Luscinia acting the gentleman threw me off, too given his history. Does Lilliana not know
    about his past massacre?

    I really like this series – it’s solid and flat like a poured concrete foundation, which right now,
    is its biggest liability. I knew that Lilliana’s announcement could only bring the one response from
    Millia that we witnessed; as an audience we weren’t led to believe that it could’ve been any other way.
    So it wasn’t a shock (at least to me). I think this is the weakness in the writing that everyone here feels.
    The overall plot is solid (concrete), but the point to point steps are too contrived (flat and smooth).
    The reconciliation between Fam and Gisey went down the same path, too, IMHO.

    Now, we know without a doubt that the Glacies pilots will rescue our trio from their pursuers.
    I would’ve liked to see more subtly to that decision – something to push them over the edge. Maybe
    the Ades pilots firing the first shot to the Glacies – one of a hundred possibilities. What frustrates
    is that it will probably be the simple plot/path device that results in their rescue, to their next step

    …which I believe is Fam’s introduction to the Glacies and acting as a catalyst to an alliance between them
    and Princess Millia.

    Enzo, question:

    Are these (Anime) episodes really a week to week effort (with maybe a week of lead time) before
    they air? I guess I assumed that the series was mostly in print before the 1st episode aired…

  3. Uh, you made a mistake in this picture. https://randomc.net/image/Last%20Exile%20Ginyoku%20no%20Fam/Last%20Exile%20Ginyoku%20no%20Fam%20-%2010%20-%20Large%2004.jpg

    That’s not Al, that’s Lilliana when she was a kid.

    And as for Lilliana siding with Luscinia, Millia explains her sister is doing this willingly and is not under control, suggesting she’s been convinced by Luscinia’s or she has a hidden motive in joining him. (also the possibility she still cares about him since he’s her childhood friend.)

  4. Animation fluctuations aside, I really enjoyed this episode. Princess Queen Lilliana’s appearance was a neat turn of events, especially since I was expecting her to just show up in the third or fourth act as a hostage MacGuffin for Fam and the others to rescue from Luscinia. That may still be the case depending on the ultimate reason for her face heel turn, but whatever the reason it was still cool to see her doing something unexpected, though I would like to see the hammer space they pulled those hundreds of Turan troops out of in between episodes. Whatever manipulation Luscinia is using also propelled him to magnificent bastard status in my book, so kudos to this episode as well for enhancing his badass villain aura. As long as we’re talking villains I hate to say that I rather enjoyed watching the attack on the sky pirate village; all those cute, homely scenes with Gisey’s siblings have been constant sources of eye-rolling for me.

    I’ll admit to having seen the dubbed version of the first series, so the recasting of Al’s seiyuu doesn’t do anything for me one way or the other, though I agree that her outfit looks a little too retro and Guild-ish for my taste, especially when compared to the rather simple garb she wore throughout the first series. I automatically assumed that the loss Dio mentioned was her caretaker, Gita, who died all the way back in something like episode three of the first series, but I agree it does throw a bit more tension back on the Hourglass manga. I don’t think Claus would be killed off in between series; it would be a hit way below the belt for fans of the original and in-story Tatiana seems way to adjusted (I don’t think cheerful is the proper word here) to have lost her love interest. Vincent was as cool as ever, and I loved the appearance of what seemed to be a rebuilt and amphibious Urbanus and Vincent’s bespectacled XO.

    The lightsaber fighting was way too blatant to be anything other than a direct homage, which is totally cool. Guild hand to hand fighting contributed to some of my favorite fight scenes in the original, so if they want Alauda to be Luscinia’s personal Darth Maul hit man, that’s fine by me. Gotta wonder if Dagobert perished when the Ades death squad took over the engine room; I’m guessing not, since he wasn’t shown at all and the Guild renegade types have always seemed pretty good at making themselves scarce when trouble comes calling.

    Teddy seems to have been completely ditched by Millia, as seen through his replacement by Fam and Gisey at the ceremony at the beginning and his continually foiled attempts to wait on the princess. Sadly, this makes sense, seeing as Millia’s bonded with girls her own age and probably always took him for granted anyway. I also noted how concern about the Silvius’s sinking didn’t translate into concern for Teddy’s safety as far as Millia was concerned. Perhaps its just bad writing again, but it’s bad writing that works in this case.

    And it’s back to a classic LE cliffhanger on a series that won’t continue till next week. If the show keeps this new pace up I’m confident in it winding up with a satisfying conclusion.

    1. In regards to the Teddy thing, if you put yourself in Millia’s place what would you be most worried about?

      She’s distraught over her sister’s decision to side with the enemy who destroyed their kingdom and killed their father. (Not only that but took her fleet, took away her title as a princess, disowned her as a sister, and was willing to shoot the ship she was on.)

      If anything, she should be worried about everyone on the Sylvius cause she’s spent time with them as well. Actually I’d be a bit annoyed if she only cared about Teddy since the Sylvius has been harboring her exiled/remnant kingdom.

  5. Yeah, the animation is this ep was not so much, eh? Great way to treat the introduction of a character from your foundation series ::sarcasm::

    And that is Lilliana as a child. Alvis does appear in the OP but not until a bit later

    As for Dio mentioning her loses. Could more easily be talking about her family, not just Claus and Lavi.

  6. @Guardian Enzo
    While I really thought Lilliana’s actions were out of place this episode in the scene where Fam, Gisey and Milia escape from the silvius Lilliana’s face looks like that of an older sister as opposed to the angry ***** earlier in the episode 😀

  7. I think Dio broadly hinted that he has a rough idea that the “Maestro” of Andes (the previous ruler of Andes) was guarded by Alauda and Luscinia and both are of the Guild.

    In fact, it’s curious where the Earth “Guild” stands. Those Andes Battleships are powered by multiple units, just as the Guild battleships were, except they lack the super cannons of the Guild Battleships. Has the Earth Guild regressed compared to even the Prester Guild?

  8. You know, i wonder how tight you can pack a Vehicle, that is only supposed to carry 2 Persons. The Pilot and the Navigator. Now you have someone sitting between them, and the Vehicle is still possible to Flight… I wish, they would thing a bit more seriously in this point.. You cannot take a third Person in a F15 Cockpit as example, or the “Extra Weight” not affecting the Maneuvering of the Plane.

    Yeah i know, this is Anime Universe with their own Physic rules. But you dont need to kick that much on it…

    1. The Earth Guild, perhaps lost the Ability of DNA Modification. As you can see, in the Preview. They have only the Wisdom of Cloning their Race now.

      That’s a nice hint, why they need “DNA Fresh flesh” perhaps? I bet the Ship Key’s, have a “Mother Guild type” DNA, or can give them birth

  9. By the way, when Dio said that Alvis lost many people, isn’t he talking about the Hamilton family? Gita and all of her relatives were pursued by the guild, and they all died. Ralph Wednesday that was in charge of protecting her also died (Claus saw him in his last moments and gave him the “legendary” seven-star mission). I think is that, probably Claus and Lavie are ok, just I don’t know how two regular non-combat vanship pilots will fit in this story. Because those two didn’t want any more fights… anyway, anything can happen, right?

      1. If they flat out said the name of who died, would Fam, Gisey, and Millia know who it was? Would they even really care? It’s only the viewer (who has seen the original Last Exile) who is vexed by this because they aren’t giving you what you specifically want.

        You don’t introduce people to others like that anyway. Who goes up to someone and says “This is my friend Alvis, she lost Claus/Holly/Lavi/etc. just like how you lost someone special to you”? Given that Fam and company have the Federation to worry about (reinstating the Grand Race, restoration of Turan, etc.), do you think knowing about exactly who Alvis lost is their biggest concern?

        And even if it’s a stunt, I think it keeps the series interesting and people wanting to see more of it. I personally enjoy being able to talk about a series and wondering things that they haven’t revealed yet. The missing bits of pieces being slowly put together as the show goes on makes it more enjoyable than having everything explained and nothing left to think about.

  10. A nice episode actually! We see Vincent, Alvis and the Urbanus back again; there is now the conflict between the Turan sisters, and Silvius is hijacked it seems…

    Dio’s offhand comment about “all the people she’s lost”. I was really concerned as well… I do hope it’s just the Hamilton family they’re talking about, and not about Claus and Lavi, who are with Alvis in the Sunadokei no Tabibito manga…

    Too bad the animation’s getting the short straw of the budget, especially on the characters. I wished that GONZO just did the Last Exile sequel when they had a secure budget… Also, it was really a pity that the screenwriter for Fam is a mediocre one…

  11. Holly Madthane was voiced by HanaKana in the original…how would that work if she makes a reappearance?

    I’m sad that Alvis got so little screen time. I can’t really care about the new main characters more than her.

  12. Nice that Alvis finally appears, and gets carried around by Vincent. But now they got a new problem:

    So now we find that Liliana switching sides. The title seems fitting: with all that hard work Fam, Millia and Giselle did going to waste. With the war of Ades vs the World going on from inside and out, Turan’s ruling sisters now in conflict and the Guild still in existence, the situation just got more chaotic.


    The Moondoggie
  13. I’m just kinda ticked she got nothing more of a character upgrade, our Alvis. I mean, she doesn’t have to be a total ass-kicker, but for crying out loud, she is still, basically, a moe piece of luggage. I do like Dio’s reference to her and Prester’s Exile. Oh, the tension of an un-exploded bomb…

  14. I think that Liliana’s decision to side with the Federation is so that Turan can rebuild without being completely destroyed. Not only that but if Liliana does die at some point in the future, her power would be transferred to Millia who is not in affiliation with the Federation (since she’s no longer a princess of Turan).

    Also thinking back to when Liliana was first kidnapped, Liliana tried to stop Millia from shooting Lusciana so it seems that Liliana may have sided with the Federation before her reappearance in this episode. (Must have had a talk with Lusciana or something to make her change her mind. Maybe leave Turan alone if she joins the Federation.)

    Next episode might have Fam and company forming an alliance with Glacies. It seems like the most likely thing to happen anyway. I mean who else do they have left to add to their forces that could give them a chance against the Federation?

  15. Ghhxxxkk. I’m gagging on what Gonzo thinks can pass for storytelling. Severely tempted to drop this, because all this series is doing is making want to rewatch the original to get the bad taste of this one out of my mouth x_x.

      1. Ok, I concede that my complaint is weak.

        My point is, all the effort of the last mini story arc have been rendered completely for naught. And by what? One word from the Princess’s older sister.

        Rage Spoiler:Show Spoiler ▼

        Your Sister, is CLEARLY working counter to your own efforts to rebuild Turan, so you’re just going to sit on the sidelines and lose all your ships like a piece of wet toast. =3=… good to know.

        … … The title of this episode clearly states how the story is acting “Illegal Move” and yet it goes through? *twitch*. Not all combat comes at crossed swords. I would’ve loved some crossed words to show Millia as having grown some while creating her own nation :/.

        Shinigami Silvius is able to take on 17 ships at once and come out (relatively) unscathed. I’m getting tired of the lack of tension in some of these Huge fights. … Imagine time:Show Spoiler ▼

        Man, the Sylvana was a Flying fortress, Alex Row never would have stood for having 6 guild flunkies pulling cloak and dagger on his ship. [/rageragerage] Dio you McGuffin, you’re late =3=, stop these guys BEFORE they get on the ship.

        *sigh* Out of rage Spoiler:Show Spoiler ▼

  16. #corrections
    You put Sylvanus several times instead of Silvius.

    Anyway, I thought this episode brought up a lot of interesting things. The tone is definitely starting to get a bit darker, which is a much needed change from all the happiness and ridiculousness brought in with Fam’s antics… However, I was extremely bothered by the animation in this episode. It was just really off, as you said. It doesn’t really affect story interpretation obvious, but it is bothersome when looking at it.

  17. “My point is, all the effort of the last mini story arc have been rendered completely for naught. And by what? One word from the Princess’s older sister.”

    She’s not “just the Princess’s older sister”, she is the Queen of Turan with their father gone and as evidenced by the first couple of episodes she’d been essentially leading the nation and the military for some time as well for all intents and purposes, between her and Millia the men will follow her.

    And IMO, rendered for naught by the enemy gaining a big victory by striking back and making a smart move and outmaneuvering them by getting Liliana to back them and having their fleet and Luscinia’s Guild squad to accomplish it as they put the heroes in trouble is hardly the same as just “for naught”, the ships weren’t made useless and they didn’t not play a role, they (and more) were forcefully and strategically taken back by the enemy.

    And further against it being for naught: plus we still have the real prize of the 15 ships, the Anshar, they only got 14 of the 15 ships back, the Anshar was not brought out.

    “Your Sister, is CLEARLY working counter to your own efforts to rebuild Turan, so you’re just going to sit on the sidelines and lose all your ships like a piece of wet toast. =3=… good to know.”

    And what could Millia do about it given her position and lack of political power? Make a pointless speech to the soldiers she’s never commanded even once yet, let alone in battle, that were already convinced by their rightful ruler thanking them for remaining loyal to her/their country during this difficult time and her and Luscinia’s joint declaration that continued resistance fighting between Ades and Turan was no longer necessary? Her soldiers backed the rightful ruler of Turan in her sister and not her (she even points this out back inside the Silvius, her sister is the Queen of Turan with their father gone not her, as Tatiana explained to Vincent with Liliana still alive all of the political power of Turan is hers and not Millia’s, and Liliana is highly respected, and the men have every reason to follow her plus she’s actually lead these men into battle before, while Millia was only just about to reform Turan with a small fleet for the very first time after the alliance ceremony which was only just finished, and hadn’t even yet commanded any of her troops even once) unfortunately for Millia this came too soon, there’s little way they wouldn’t have backed Liliana over Millia yet, plus there’s only the Silvius and Urbanus and their two crews on her side now on this battlefield once Liliana took her troops (and the Silvius ends up invaded by the enemy) who could try to defend the ships that were set to be crewed by those Turan officers as Millia’s new Turan fleet (they probably even already had at least skeleton Turan crews aboard during the party since the party happened after the ceremony so they were probably already lost the moment Turan changed sides), so just two ships against the combined forces of Luscinia’s fleet and “Turan’s fleet” and remaining troops (and soon to be Luscinia’s Guilders) and in their extremely disadvantageous position they weren’t really in a position to take back those ships once Turan changed sides, the Silvius and Urbanus were going to be retreating as they were already doing even before Luscinia’s Guilders made their move.

    BTW, we’ll see but for the time being everything points to Liliana not being brainwashed into this, as both Millia said and her seemingly relieved reaction when she saw that Millia managed to make it off the Silvius.

    “Man, the Sylvana was a Flying fortress, Alex Row never would have stood for having 6 guild flunkies pulling cloak and dagger on his ship. [/rageragerage] Dio you McGuffin, you’re late =3=, stop these guys BEFORE they get on the ship.”

    Spoiler for S1: Show Spoiler ▼

    “Shinigami Silvius is able to take on 17 ships at once and come out (relatively) unscathed. I’m getting tired of the lack of tension in some of these Huge fights. … ”

    There was plenty of tension during their escape in that battle plus the tension added by mysterious technologically advanced Glacies making their first appearance (not to mention the previous fleet battle just before in ep.7 where the Sky Pirates were getting slaughtered and Atamora almost died, and the enemy victory in ep.2) and they only made it due to Tatiana doing Alex proud on the choice of evasive maneuvers and the Silvana/Silvius’ legacy of excellent acoustic equipment and listening officer, a similar combination of tactics and acoustic tech Alex used, as well as her excellent strategic decision to use the boarder of Glacies to her advantage.

    1. Well, i bet the Guild invasion group will secure the Engine Room. So, i want to see. How they avoid this Mouse Trap. But i think, they will get Captured and Fam will come for Rescue.. Of course not alone.. just give it some time. To get the Trust of the “new Ally”

      I dont think, that Alex can do his Magic Tricks here. why? If he would be so confident of winning. Why running away with Urbanus? To get Combat ready? They now. To much Cannons can crack even the best Armors

      And if you use the Deus ex… aehm Guilders… Btw, why let the Enemy go with this all along? If they want to end a fight quickly, why not send a Guild Assassin team? Did i hear Storyline Hole? Hell YES!!.. This Guilders are God’s.. with their Technology.. Or the New Allys have adapted their Technology and they have a “Balance of Power”

      1. Agreed, I’m looking forward to what’s going to happen next, loved the cliffhangers.

        Considering we don’t yet know the relationship between the Guild and Ades, it’s not yet a storyline hole (also it’s worth noticing how Dio’s white Guild’s symbol and Alauda’s symbol on his Guild-style gray uniform are different symbols), also depending on how much Luscinia even cares about Ades itself he may only use his personal Guilders (especially if he only has a few) when his personal fleet is involved in action or something is vital to his personal mission and given Ades’ general level of military technology they are not receiving full Guild support or even full support from Luscinia’s Guild-connection if he has access to more Guild tech like Alauda’s ship (he has a Starfish-Vanship hybrid but they have not given this tech to the Ades forces).

    1. Whatever… no idea how you could drop it after that awesome ep (and the recent string of equally very strong eps in 7-9 & 10) if you’d been sticking with it so far… weird time to drop in my opinion as we near the second half and off the great cliffhangers and new twists, but feel free ofcourse.

      To counterpoint, it’s not perfect (nothing is) but in my opinion Gonzo’s doing a great job with this. The overall story is great and the characters are likeable and the mysteries and politics have been very intriguing and they’ve captured the awesome and unique look, feel and atmosphere of Last Exile again, and anytime (which is most of the time) the ships are flying or we get cockpit shots or sky-based shots or fleet battles they have been extremely exciting and involving and the visuals for them are gorgeous and the stunning backgrounds are the best of the season by far, easily my favorite show of the season already and these types of large scale action shows usually get even better in the second half when they can finally let loose with the bigger storylines, revelations, and action and character moments.

      And despite this being their first show back and as such still in the process of rebuilding their “warchest” for affording consistent production values, even with the occasionally dip they’ve got the best and most inspired visuals of the season outside of Guilty Crown’s character animation (which is Prod. I.G at the height of their stability as a studio with a super-high budget and yet still not as visually interesting, exciting or at times breathtaking as Last Exile: GnF IMO despite IG’s high budget gorgeous character animation for GC.).

      Hopefully the second half of Last Exile: GnF raises the stakes and scale once again as much as this last episode and it’s cliffhanger did again (just as most recently before it in ep 7 and 8) and like the second half of the first Last Exile did building off the excellent smaller scale but still great first half that only hinted at the big things to come.


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