I first watched Last Exile with my dad when I was in high school. I had never watched an anime like it before, and it’s probably one of the most influential series in my taste in anime. Because of Fam—the anime I’m looking forward to the most this season—I spent the weekend marathoning through the original Last Exile series while doing sketches for class.
Last Exile was always on the fringes of my cosplay plans. I could never quite decide between Dio Elaclaire and Alex Row, but I’d always leaned towards Dio because Alex made me feel a little uncomfortable. My face was too young for him and I didn’t quite understand him to the same extent that I understood Dio. Since I was facing the thought of leaving home and becoming an adult, Dio’s story made more sense to me. But even though Dio would have been an excellent addition to my white wig collection and the refined simplicity of his costume would have done wonders for my technical skills, I just never got around to him between my involvement in a cosplay group at that time, and getting ready for college.
So when I heard rumors of a Last Exile sequel, I decided to wait and see how it would play out. One of my cosplay friends up here (the one who has the same taste in cosplay as me) is working on filling out her list of future cosplays, and with Fam coming up, I thought it would be a good idea to introduce her to Dio and the world of Last Exile. She also hasn’t watched too much anime, so I try to show her good series when I can.
But as we watched, I started remembering Alex Row’s story: the tragedy of the loss of the love of his life, the crushing admittance of his moment of cowardice, his mask of apathy and how it at times turned into gentle protection of Claus and Lavi, and later Dio and Lucciola, and at other times slipped into raw anger and an ultimately fatal desire for revenge and a new world freed from the cruel reign of the Guild.
We tried to play the ‘guess who I’d cosplay at the end of the series’ game, but it took her all of two episodes to decide that Alex fit me best this time around (surprisingly enough to me, she initially liked Tatiana Wisla best before Dio’s creepiness evolved into being adorable.)
Curiosity got the best of me, and I looked up the character art for Fam. Dio’s design can be found here, along with the rest of the concept art that has been revealed so far.
While I love Dio’s design for my friend, no one visually captured my interest. I don’t know if I’m stuck on Alex, or if I’ll have to watch Fam all the way through first. I have a lot of hope in this series as a sequel, and I’m excited to see how the world continues after the upheaval at the end of the original series.