So imagine my surprise and delight when, while perusing Best Buy’s shelves, I came across Volume 2 of Last Exile. At first, I couldn’t believe my eyes — I had been under the impression that it was coming out next week (at least, according to AnimatedBliss). But a closer look, and glance at the episode listing (eps. 5 – 8), revealed otherwise. I think I practically floated to the checkout lane.
Okay, so maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but I was pretty happy little camper. I absolutely loved the first volume of Last Exile, and thought that it had the makings of becoming something truly special. And Volume 2 delivers as well, drawing you even more deeply into the adventures of Claus and Lavie.
It’s the little things that continue to strike me about this series. Sure, it has plenty of big battles and intense aerial action, but the series’ creators do a great job of throwing out tiny, seemingly insignificant details that help flesh out the world. Drinking water, for example.
It seems like a triviality, but the way that characters (Lavie, especially) react to the water they see and drink — clean drinking water is a precious commodity in the world of Last Exile, and even a luxury, like wine — just adds so much. In episode 8, which features some hilarious scenes with Lavie, the hot-headed navigator/sidekick of Claus, the series’ main character (so far), the series also delves more deeply into the relationship between the aristocracy and the commoners. Which also adds even more depth to the series.
Speaking of Lavie, she has some of the disc’s best moments, and her reactions to the situations she and Claus get into are worth the DVD price alone. And even more characters start coming along for the ride, such as the rowdy crew of the Silvana (the mysterious airship where Claus and Lavie find themselves) and Tatiana, the Silvana’s lead vanship pilot.
The series is still getting underway, and hints at more mysteries than it solves (for example, just who or what is Alvis, and what is the Last Exile). And though the Guild (the omnipotent organization that seems to oversee everything in the world of Prester) has an increased presence on this disc (one of the Guild’s leaders takes an interest in Claus and engages him in a thrilling dogfight), it remains an enigma as well. All in all, yet another great disc of a very promising and enthralling series. I only hope I can get Volume 3 early as well — it’s listed as coming out on April 6th, but I’ve got my fingers crossed.