Color Me Blown Away – Last Exile

It’s been awhile since I commented on some of the anime I’ve been watching. While some of it has been good, LAST EXILE blew me away. In fact, my brother called it his ‘crack addiction’ because he had to watch all episodes as fast as he could.


Last Exile follows our two heroes into a world of strife and struggle, as two empires attempt to rid themselves from the control of the mysterious Guild. Check the web site for more info on the story. As you may notice, only the first 4 episodes have been released on DVD in the US, but, once again, the Internet to the rescue! I was able to obtain all 26 episodes from one of the anime fansub groups. Wow, was it worth it.

First, the look of the show is exceptionally unique and visually stunning. Its a mix of 1930’s design with a liberall does of Industrial Age/Victorian Era thrown in. Most of the action takes place in the skies between the kingdoms, and in the Grand Stream, a super-jet stream seperating the two kingdoms. Vast airships dominate the fleets of each side and look like flying battleships from the turn of the 20th Century navies.

The technology used is an interesting mix of lower tech (air tubes used for communication in each ship, signal flares and semaphores between ships, muskets and flintlock weapons) and high tech (the Vanships and airships use a Claudia unit engine which produces an anti-gravity like effect). This results in the anachronistic visuals that are the hallmark of this series. You won’t mistake this for anything else you’ve seen. The animation itself is a mix of 2D and 3D CGI. Its exceptionally well integrated and reminds of Cowboy Bebop in how well done it is.

The story is basically about how two ordinary kids get swept up in the battles between the kingdoms and the Guild and the search for the Last Exile. I did find the story to be somewhat confusing to follow, especially at the end (although not anywhere near as dense as the ending of Evangelion), but I attribute some of that to the fansubbing. Once I hit a fansite about Last Exile, the last few episodes made much more sense. I expect a professionally done release to be more clear on what is going on.

All in all, I’d rate this waaay up there, and would put it on the ‘must see anime’ list!

21 thoughts on “Color Me Blown Away – Last Exile”

  1. It was my attempt to vamp while I tried to locate the page. The ususal site I use is –

    http://www.downloadanime.org

    Right now, its links are screwed. Anyway, Last Exile wasn’t on their so I had to search.

    You can find the batchtorrents here:

    Anime-Kraze

    There are 3 batchtorrents, all in the middle of the list. Each torrent has about 8 seeds so I don’t expect great download speeds. I may go and purchase Nero and make a DVD-ROM with them on it so I can loan it out.

  2. As its been licensed in the States, it seems most of the big torrent sites have removed the LE torrents. That and the MPAA has scared a bunch of torrent sites into closing.

    But you could try Anime Yumi….

  3. Just saw the last episode and am a bit confused. If anyone has finished the series could they please explain their take on the ending.

    Cheers,

    A

  4. At the risk of spoiling it for people who haven’t seen it:

    SPOILERS!!!!

    The Last Exile itself is a starship. Our heroes manage to find it and board it. It then takes them, and a bunch of other people, off their world, which is the figure 8 looking thing, and transports them to a new world, the blue planet you see momentarily. Things happen fast at the end, I agree. They could have used another episode to slow it down and explain what was going on better.

  5. SPOILERS!!!!!!

    Nah that’s not what happened.

    We all saw Mullin, Dunya, Tatiana, Alister, Alvis, Claus, and Lavie in the end, and Mullin and Dunya had two kids, and, although no one looked any older at all, it seemed like Claus and Lavie also had two kids, which were sitting in a vanship on the ground (one had blond hair and one had red hair, and since Mullin and Dunya had kids, it must have been several years later).

    Now firstly Mullin and Dunya weren’t on the Exile, they were on Mad-thane’s ship which did not crash on the Exile, it retreated when Exile was ripping apart the allied fleet. The only two ships that crashed on the Exile were the Urbanus, which was Vince’s ship, and the Silvana, which took off before the Exile flew away anyway.

    Secondly, it showed Claus, Lavie, and Al flying off of Exile in the end, with their vanship, and flying away.

    Thirdly, Dunya received the 10-star document that Claus’ and Lavie’s fathers were trying to deliver in the end, from Sophia (if I remember correctly). How could she have done that if she was on another planet? And how could Sophia have the document if Claus and Lavie did not bring it back from the Exile?

    No, the Exile terraformed the planet they were on, fixing the weather and the landscape so that it was fertile and useable, and allowing everyone to live on the ground.

    Then Dunya and Mullin were living at a house in the fields, possibly with Tatiana, Alister, Claus, Lavie, and Alvis, although not necessarily; because Claus and Lavie were in their own vanship, and the other vanship on the ground probably belonged to Tatiana and Alister, they might all have just flown there to meet.

    The only person that may have flown to another planet was Vince, and it may have shown him also in the end, I don’t recall.

  6. Yeah Kelly – I drew the same conclusion. Exile terraformed their planet to being lush and fixing the weather. Of course the was little explanation as to what the rationale was for having this ship that could terraform the planet hidden away (maybe it was left over from the intial colonization of the planet?)

    I didn’t gather those were their children at the end, but it certainly makes sense (I guess I glossed over whose children they were exactly.)

  7. Check out halo-productions.com for the complete story. It is the best Last Exile Site I Found. It has a complete episode summary, the story behind the story. Some of the deeper meanings of the series, like the episode names. Overall it is everything anyone could need to know about Last Exile.

  8. Hi peeps,

    just finished the series yesterday and I must say it was great. But the plot was getting rather confuising towards the end.

    For starters, can someone explain how did Tatiana and Alister appear at the refilling stations to meet Claus? How come the Silvanas’s mechanic crew were distributed along the refilling stations as well? I thought Tatiana rescued Sophia away Silvanas when Delphine launched an attack on the ship and captured Claus, Alvis and Alex? Accordingly, Sophia returned to Silvanas (presumably because Alex is no longer around to be the captain)…so theoretically shouldn’t be the mech crew and Tatiana/Alister be on the Silvanas as well?

    OK, I must admit I am a bit puzzled by the ending as well. Beem reading a few sites and there are basically two explanations for the ending.

    EXPLANATION ONE

    The people of Anatoray and Disith were migrants from their home planet (the Blue Planet) but ended up at the station (i.e. Plestale our initial story world) due to possibly the changing inclement weather. These peoples are ruled by the Guild who are technologically superior uppper class who wants to rule over these two peoples. The Guild artificially created a world on the space station Plestale using the the Weather Control System as mentioned by Alex’s chief engineer in episode 11 to keep these two peoples Anatoray and Disith separate to limit the likelihood of rebellion. [Obviously this was the case since Alex had hinted that it was Delphine who intervened in the delivery of the peace message 10 years ago.] To separate the two “countries”, the Guild further created the Grand Stream which is actually an artificial maelstrom with artificial flight paths to facilitate flying to reach the Guild Palace. At the same time, the EXILE, the migration/terraforming ship is being concealed within the Grand Stream. Further, malfunctions in the Weather Control System causes the Disith’s world to be covered in ice and snow, forcing them to invade Anatoray’s part of the land. This could explain the chief engineer’s comment about needing to get the weather control system fixed or something like that. [The Guild under Delphine wanted to use the chance to let the Disith eliminate the Anatoray.]

    I think the Weather Control System is actually the Guild Palace.

    EXPLANATION TWO

    This is the more straightforward one. That is — the EXILE is a migration pod that transports them away to the Blue Planet as mentioned in the above threads.

    By the way, how come Alvis, the child from House Hamilton know all the answers? Especially when they also have one Msyterion with them!

  9. does anybody knows where can I find a Ftp to download all of the parts of last exile. If anyone can help me, please to send me a mail.

  10. Just to tell you..

    *SPOILERS*

    Prester is an artificial world, really more like a space station. People were transporter there on Exile, then the Guild was supposed to be the custodians who kept the station safe and in control. The Grand Stream was used to hide Exile, and the Mysteria probly were given to four Guild houses to prevent a breakup of the Guild, but that didn’t stop Delphine from eradicating the 3 other houses. According to the DVD insert, Exile purpose is to autonomously transport people from the Blue Planet to Exile, and Vice versa. The characters go to the new world (at least Tatiana, Alister, Mullin, Dunya, Clause, Al, and Lavie, shown by the ocean visible in the background at the grave of Claus and Lavie’s fathers. Prester had no oceans, indicating it is the Blue planet they are living on. And, there is theory that Dio might have somehow survived, due to a mysterious voice heard in the Silvana as it escapes Exile’s tentacles, and an insert seen in the last DVD.

  11. Go to wikipedia, they have EVERYTHING on Last exile, even some stuff i didn’t even know was in the show

  12. i have a question…i just recently finished watching last exile and i absolutely love it! id like to post it on youtube, but i dont want to do it if its not legal…all the episodes are from kickassanime but does that make it ok to post it? any ideas would be helpful!

    thanks!!

  13. My idea is this: It’s illegal.

    Despite the name, kickassanime doesn’t own the rights to the show and therefore they shouldn’t even be offering it for download.

    Did I mention posting it on YouTube is illegal? How is this even a possible question?

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