Last Exile: Fam, The Silver Wing Ep1: Gonzo is back!

Even though I'll never ask for this to be as good as the original, I didn't set the bar any lower because it's Gonzo. And by Haruhi, I think they've done it. I wasn't exactly "impressed", but I was pleasantly surprised by what they had achieved after they got their act together. Last Exile: Ginyoku no Fam had instantly jumped to the top of my list for this season.

I don't think the steampunk concept actually requires a very high level of animation quality, but Gonzo would never give up a chance to impress. The animation quality is easily the best this season, and I would say it even beats Guilty Crown in those terms (for the respective first episodes, that is). One thing that you would immediately notice, if you had watched the original, is that the characters are much more heavily defined, in terms of line weight and colours. The characters in Last Exile has kept a very pastel tone throughout the series, and the line weight could almost make them blend into the background, but I find that it also plays a huge part in the uniqueness of the show. Ginyoku no Fam has lost that trait, but it works for me since they're really going for moé designs this time round anyway.

The CG was pretty impressive too. I've never noticed this before, you really have to marvel at how well the CG Vanships and the cel characters works together.

I laughed that the thought that their Vanship might have gotten the moé injection as well. In terms of standard Vanship designs in both series, the one that our main characters use is tiny. And they're adding a third person on it later (temporary), so you'll get to see three small girls squeezing inside that tiny cockpit. I know that they all should be pretty lightweight, but with that kind of thrust the ship can provide, we should totally see some jet packs in action. Remember that if we really see it coming in the later episodes, I gave them the idea =P

I loved the character designs, and it's not because I'm a lolicon or anything. Sure, unlike the unique charms of Claus and Lavi, we have moéblobs in every sense of the word. And Toyosaki Aki's role as a hyperactive girl that seemingly act without using brain seems to be drawing too many similarities to her other popular character (Yui), but her character is simply too likable. And it's not like she's constantly selling out her moé traits too. Her personality and actions are what makes her character so much fun and often creates hilarious situations, like this one above.

I missed the big-brotherly or fatherly relationship Claus had with Alvis, but I guess I won't be seeing it because the girls are pretty much the same age. Would it be too much to ask for some girly bonding instead? IYKWIM. After all, we seems to be seeing a lot of... you know...