|Wing Commander Academy episode|
|The Last One Left|
|Blair and Maniac encounter a Confed war hero turned renegade|
|Air date||September 28, 1996|
|Previous episode||Red and Blue|
|Next episode||The Most Delicate Instrument|
|Writers||Mark Edens/Michael Edens|
|Notable guest actor(s)||Ron Perlman (as Daimon Karnes)|
|Preceding episode||Red and Blue|
|Subsequent episode||The Most Delicate Instrument|
|Guest ship(s)||Sabre, Epee, Avenger-class, Dorkir-class|
The Last One Left is the second episode of the Wing Commander Academy TV series.
The TCS Tiger's Claw is in jump space and Maverick records a message to his parents, describing the strange feeling of moving faster than light, when the rest of the universe doesn't exist. In the meantime Maniac is beaten by Gwen Bowman practice low-grav tennis. The Claw exits jump space, and the turmoil causes the picture frame of Blair's parents to fall and break. He hears then an announcement calling him to the briefing room. On his way there he meet Maniac, and find an opportunity of yet another challenge, of who finds the briefing room first. While Blair is running, he stumbles upon tech specialist Maya McEaddens. They reach the briefing room simultaneously, only to see that Tolwyn is already waiting for them.
He begins the briefing with the reconnaissance of M4-21a, an uninhabited system with some strategic impmortance because of its proximity to many jump points. Tolwyn divides them into 3 groups who will investigate its moons and planets thoroughly. Maniac can't help but notice in the papers that it was legendary pilot Daimon Karnes who first explored that system.
The pilots set off in their Scimitars. As always, Maverick and Maniac are in the same team, and Maniac sleeps during the AutoNav. Right after they return to manual control, they encounter a Kilrathi transport, which attacked by Kilrathi fighters, which soon send missiles against the two pilots.
Maverick and Maniac perform evasive action and one of the missiles hits a missile decoy but the other still pursues Maniac, who still evades it using his afterburners, before being hit. He is alive but his fighter is neutralized. Because of the Kilrathi presence, he tells Maverick to return to the Claw. A lone Sabre approaches and hits Maniac's Scimitar, but Maverick shows up trying to hit the Sabre, which promptly turns around and hits Maverick's ship with a single direct shot. With both Scimitars incapacitated, Maverick offers their surrender.
The two friends are transported on an Avenger to an installation which is built around a crater of one of the planets. As they are pushed forward by two thugs, a female alien called Trawn (?) welcomes them to Tortuga. Maniac is puzzled to see that the Sabre pilot is none other than Karnes. Soon they are taken to a dinner room where Karnes introduces them to his new lifestyle: years ago the emptiness of space became his, and now he feels no hate for the Kilrathi and no love for the Confederation.
Maverick and Maniac are in a dungeon arguing about whose fault it was to end up there. Their fight is interrupted by Karnes, who tells them that a transport is nearby and asks them to volunteer with his attack. Maverick asks if it's Terran or Kilrathi to which Karnes replies that it doesn't matter. He is saddened to see that Maniac opts to join the assault as he always wanted to fly with Karnes.
Maniac flies with Karnes' group in an Epee against a Dorkir-class transport. However he soon breaks off and attempts to contact the Claw. He is seen and pursued by Karnes who disables Maniac's Epee with a direct hit.
Maniac floats in space helpless but soon regains control. He is still pursued by Karnes. He manages to get a lock on him, but his weapons are useless, as Karnes knew better than allowing the newcomer to fly a fully functional fighter. Once more Maniac reprimands Karnes for his choices, who is ready to destroy Maniac, when he is notified by Trawn (?) that the Kilrathi transport was a trap. He moves away leaving Maniac alone, who attempts to re-engage his ship.
Karnes finds his group is annihilated, and begins a desperate move against a swarm of Sarthas. They then bombard and attack the planet. Maverick is still in his cell and seeing that Tortuga has been overwhelmed by Kilrathi, hides his Confederation uniform. He is found taken before furious Prince Thrakhath. The Prince tells the prisoner that he will be left alive to narrate what happens when someone attacks the Kilrathi. The Sarthas then take off.
Maverick is alone attempting to repair his Scimitar when he is joined by Maniac's Epee limping back, seeing that there has been a "party". He asks Maverick if he knew that Maniac had been lying to Karnes all the time.
The two pilots are back in the Claw. Tolwyn tells them that the Kilrathi task force has jumped out of the system. He reveals to them that the Confederation knew the truth about Karnes but kept this information secret as this revelation of Karnes being a deserter would be bad for the people's morale, who always needs heroes. He orders them never to mention their adventure, the name Karnes is to be forgotten. The scene moves to the wreckage of Karne's fighter-bomber.
- Originally set in 2655, this episode was moved back to 2654.131.
- This episode takes place after the Wing Commander film and after the Epilogue of Pilgrim Stars, and before the Prologue of Pilgrim Truth, but overlaps Mission 1 & 2 of the Mcaullife Series of WC1.[Source?]
- Some of the references to Maniac and Blair being cadets in the Academy are at odds with the game backgrounds and film backgrounds for those characters and the Academy.
- The announcer in the beginning of the episode reveals the last names of six of the characters. He also alls for Emil Zoharian. However, he isn't present at the briefing. It's possible that Zoharian is the pilot seen with Grunt when Maniac runs by them.
- The Kilrathi transport seen near the beginning of the episode seems to be another Kilrathi ship belonging to the line of the Hvar'kann-class dreadnaught. Two similar ships have already been seen in the previous episode.
- The ships used by the Tortuga pirates are Sabres (Karnes), Dralthis, Epees, and an Avenger-class Torpedo Bomber, first seen in Wing Commander IV as a ship of the Border Worlds. This may cause some dating issues depending on when some of these ships were designed according to game and manuals.
- The Kilrathi who apprehends Blair in the Tortuga cell must be Garahl nar Hhallas, in an early non-speaking cameo.