The original series aired in 2003 and takes place on Prester (the Hourglass), where two lands Anatoray and Disith are at war, and both are being over ruled and regulated by The Guild, who posess superior technology. People fled Earth after a cataclysmic event that rendered it uninhabitable approx 600 years ago, and eventually colonized Prester to start a new life. The people left behind on Earth had to fend for themselves as part of the Earth Regeneration Plan and both eventually re-populated and thrived. Upon returning to Earth using the Exiles, the Prester immigrants re-claimed their lands thus causing many Earth inhabitants to be cast out of their homes. There are basically three races of people, the human Earthlings that were left behind, the humans that fled to Prester and have now returned to Earth, and members of The Guild, clones with excellent physical abilities with their Prester branch getting a bit out of touch with the original mission.
In Fam The Silver Wing set four years after the first series ends, we meet Fam Fan Fan and Giselle Collette, two young Sky Pirates that raid and capture cargo and battle ships to make a living (they are basically glorified thieves). Their little vespa vanship goes through a lot throughout the series, and their skilled flying and navigation sees them out of some dangerous situations. Fam was found as a baby in a crashed vanship and was adopted and raised by Giselle’s family, and being so close they heavily rely on each other for aeronautic and emotional support. While out hunting for ships, they come across the Lasas, a flagship from the Turan Kingdom being pursued by the Ades Federation and the sky pirates stage a daring rescue in exchange for the Turan flagship . They meet the two princesses of Turan, the older sister Liliana il Grazioso Merlo Turan, and her younger sibling Millia Il Velch Cutrettola Turan.
The Ades Federation is headed by the Empress Sara Augusta, a very young girl who’s mother was murdered and left her to succeed the throne. Although so young she has the peoples best interest in mind, albeit a bit naive about the state of the world she wishes to continue her mothers dream of bringing peace to the countries. Luscinia Hāfez is the Premier of Ades and takes command in most battles and is supported by a few other military fleets and generals to fulfill the Augusta’s dreams. Luscinia in dedicated wholly to the Augusta, and is staging an all out war on the Prester immigrant countries to return the land back to their original owners and unite them under the Federations rule. The Turan Princess Liliana is captured by Luscinia, and she is used to activate an Exile which obliterates the Turan Kingdom leaving it’s people homeless and without leadership.
Giselle and Fam band together to support Millia in her time of need, and they unite in order to reclaim Turan and it’s people as well as stopping the Ades Federation’s devastating march across the lands. They find allies in the Silvius, as well as other countries that are not too keen on being overtaken by the Federation, and Millia learns the truth about why her sister eventually stays with Luscinia and commits the atrocities of mass murder with her Exile. Fam and Giselle dream of having another Grand Race and ultimately is what spurs Millia forward to do what is right, even if it means killing her sister to do so.
The ships use a type of gravity drive, or Claudia Unit to stay afloat, and larger vessels have a limited height restriction so the battle strategies rely heavily on fleet positioning, and new weapons development to streamline their attacks and defense. It was also quite surprised to find out the Glacies nation speaks a mix of Greek and Futhork, which I had to look into because the language didn’t sound familiar. This is a 21 episode series and the DVD includes some great extras and spin-off series and commentaries, as well as some beautiful outer and inner sleeve artwork. The animation is quite clean and consistent throughout, and the Vanship battles are incredibly large scale with the CG fitting quite smoothly into the animated backgrounds and characters. There are a couple of clunky moments when the angle or speed is a bit off, but it’ not really noticeable or even frequent as everything else is so smooth and impressive.
I really enjoyed this, and I would highly recommend getting through the first series as the characters pasts and relationships are a valuable knowledge to have coming into this. There are quite a few other familiar faces and even Claus and Lavie make an appearance at the end, which brings back a bit of nostalgia. There is just so much to enjoy with the vehicle designs and politics of war and kingdoms, as well as the characters themselves and how they are surviving the best they can.
A review copy was provided by Madman Entertainment to the author for the purpose of this review.