Most of this post will be spoiler tagged. I hope that won't be too annoying.
Last Exile spoilers wrote:For me, Last Exile was a very good series with a terrible ending. Contrivances were running rampant and barely anything was explained.
So Exile isn't harming Delphine's ship and is under her control because it suddenly likes her? My, what a convenient plot device. So much for Al. You know, Al's only been the central figure for the entire series. Cancelling out her importance for the control of Exile on a whim is no big deal. Speaking of Al, what exactly is she? An alien being? A genetically engineered human? A robot? Way to leave out the five minutes it might have taken to explain her origins. Good job there.
Poor Delphine, being strangled to death by a man pinned to a wall. She couldn't have possibly escaped his grip by pushing off his body with her legs and falling backward out of his reach. I don't know: Maybe she really was stuck there somehow. To me, it just didn't look like she had no way out of that situation.
Onto the ending... I think the part of the Last Exile epilogue sequence at the end of 26 that bothered me the most was that there was practically no exploration of Exile shown. We were barely shown any of the interior. Oh well. I suppose a completely unnecessary scene with Claus and Lavie discovering their fathers' old vanship and corpses was just as good as a tour of Exile.
Personally, I would have loved it if Delphine had used Exile to travel back to earth, only to discover that the world she was so eager to journey to is nothing more than a wasteland with totally spent resources and crumbling remnants of the society that lived there long ago. Would that have been too much to ask? A little payoff for all the episodes it took to finally get to Exile?
Instead, everything is wrapped up much too neatly in the end and the only tragically dead characters are the ones (except perhaps Dio) whose deaths were the most predictable.
Last Exile had a lot going for it before the ball was dropped at the end, though. The characters were interesting, the storyline had a seemingly compelling hook, and quite a bit of the series made it seem as though it was a Final Fantasy game in anime form, complete with airships and chocobo races. Okay, so they weren't called chocobos in the series, but that's what I call them. They're way too similar for me to call them anything else. I enjoyed Last Exile for the most part, but I found the ending very unsatisfying. I felt as though the equivalent of an entire backstory episode had been left out. For those of you that have seen Trigun, how would you have felt if the episode 'Rem Saverem' had been left out of the series? Well, that's pretty much how I felt when I finished Last Exile.