Last Exile: Ginyoku no Fam goes from an interesting tribute to a snoozer and ends in a failure.
Throughout the early episodes of the series, I remember having favorable opinions for the show; it reminds me of the brilliance of the first season, the vast world, and even one of the first reasons I started liking anime, because Last Exile was one of the earliest shows I've watched. I hated Millia, but I liked Fam, and that Toyosaki Aki did a pretty good job on her. As long they keep this up and moving on to the real story, it would turn out really good.
It didn't have a good story. After the first, say, 1/3 of the story, one of the most prominent problems began to show up: the lead character Fam. There are many, many things said about her character, I think I can sum it up as having no depth, no variance in personality, and no character development. She wasn't unique in any way, and she doesn't have any kind of background except for being really good at piloting. She has a one-dimensional personality and only one approach to every single problem in the story. And she learned nothing and changed nothing throughout the entire story. As you would expect, things becomes really boring, fast.
Then... when it comes down to the important moments, the storytelling was pure shit. When did the primary enemy change from Sera to Luscinia? All that screentime on Orang just for his 10 seconds of fame? A single message from Sera to end all conflict, instantly? A single ship shows out of nowhere and starts shooting everything, and the battle ends right there? The pacing is also terrible. Episode 19 contain one of the most important battles in the story, yet they rushed through it so as to begin the next part.
And finally, the story, which also disappoints. The ending left me confused about Luscinia's real objective in the end. Was he trying a Lelouch here? If so, it was terribly executed, because both Liliana's and his actions were really unjustified. I found it so un-agreeable that I'm still hesitant to believe that was supposed to be the conclusion to the story. The final impression of the story almost always rests on the ending, and such an unsatisfying ending is pretty much the worst you can do.
Oh wait, just one more. Of the two most important, and most anticipated weapons our main characters can wield, one never showed up, and one blew up on a whim. What a good idea, right?
I could talk more about the things that this series did wrong, but I don't want to turn this more into a list more than it already does. The most enjoyable episode turns out to be a recap of the previous season. So, is this a complete waste of time? Well, the show does have several good points. The production values are excellent, being Gonzo's supposed flagship material after all. I never think that they quite captured the "steampunk" feel as compared to the previous season, but I supposed that's subjective. Since the animation quality often matters a lot more to me than other people, I must say that this isn't a complete waste of time; I did enjoy it a fair bit. If you would have me recommend this to people, I can only say that this is a huge disappointment; especially if you've watched the first season.
Story Style: Really, really bad