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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney : Part 6
By Jeanne
Posted 06.30.12
Pg. 1 : 2 : 3 : 4
Speaking of which, at one point, while berating Detective Gumshoe for running his mouth on the stand, von Karma does this dramatic finger snap, which has kind of a shimmery metallic sound effect, like a sword being whipped out of its sheath. I really didn't mean for the description to sound that gay, but it's beyond my control at this point.

 
I'm not sure that's something to aspire to.

Phoenix asks Gumshoe about Edgeworth's demeanor when they found him at the lake in the middle of the night. He clearly wants to know if Edgeworth's pants were unzipped or if his cravat was in disarray. "From what I saw, he looked pretty relaxed. Not like a murderer at all, really," Gumshoe cheerfully replies. Relaxed? Phoenix takes this as a bad sign -- there's really only one thing that relaxes Edgeworth. Before Phoenix can shriek a very angry and jealous "Objection!", von Karma beats him to the punch. He reams the hell out of Gumshoe for sharing his opinion instead of "hard facts" but really, what did von Karma expect when he put Edgeworth's number one stalker on the stand?

Even though Phoenix has very little desire to listen to Gumshoe verbally jizz all over Edgeworth, it seems to piss off von Karma, and that can only be a good thing. Well, unless von Karma loses his shit and tries to suck Phoenix's soul out through his peehole, which is a very real possibility. Phoenix asks Gumshoe why he wouldn't find Edgeworth's presence at a crime scene in the middle of the night all that suspicious. "You should know! We have a deep, trusting relationship with the prosecutors," Gumshoe admits in front of the entire court, as if there's more than one prosecutor he wishes to have a deep, thrusting relationship with. Von Karma completely flips his shit over this comment, ranting and raving at Gumshoe for going off script. It's such a disproportionate response, von Karma is kind of coming across as a homophobe here. Or he, too, might have a secret (or not-so-secret) crush on his former student. So many layers here. I'll let you decide.

What is von Karma's deal here?
Raging homophobe, even though his outfit indicates he does not enjoy the company of women. A self-hating homophobe, then.
Like very other male in this game, he wants himself a piece of that hot fuchsia ass.

 

The love triangle drama is way more interesting (albeit disturbing), but I suppose it's time to focus on details more pertinent to the case. Phoenix presses Gumshoe for more details on the body -- and I'm talking about the dead body, not Edgeworth's smooth, perfectly-toned body. The victim was shot through the heart with a single bullet. Von Karma passes the recovered bullet to the Judge, adding that it's perfectly intact because it didn't "strike bone." I imagine Phoenix snickered a little bit at that.

 
Heh...he said 'deep' and 'cock.'

When Phoenix wonders why Edgeworth was arrested, Gumshoe admits that they recovered the pistol that fired the fatal bullet. It's pretty clear that Gumshoe isn't telling him the whole story here, so Phoenix presses him on that point as well, even though he should know better by now. With a terrifying grin plastered on his face, von Karma begins to chuckle evilly. This, according to Phoenix, sounds identical to Edgeworth's laugh. I imagine that's a bit awkward and confusing for him. Gumshoe is all, "Yeah, we kind of found Edgeworth's fingerprints all over the murder weapon." Wait, what? That's a pretty major piece of incriminating evidence that no one bothered to mention before now. I guess the cops complaining about the lack of clues yesterday didn't know about it either, so why should Phoenix? There's no reason I should be surprised at this kind of stuff anymore. Phoenix isn't too happy with his tightlipped boyfriend right now -- while the peanut gallery goes "rabble rabble," Phoenix shoots Edgeworth a dirty look that clearly conveys, "I am taking this out of your ass later."

The pistol is entered in the court record, and both the item description and Gumshoe make sure to note that the fingerprints are from Edgeworth's right hand. Protip: when this game bothers to mention which hand was used to do something, it's a sure sign that some other evidence will show the opposite hand doing it.

With another snap of his fingers, von Karma proceeds to tie the two pieces of evidence together. He asks Gumshoe if the pistol with Edgeworth's fingerprints also fired the fatal bullet. This is kind of silly because Gumshoe already said in his testimony that the pistol was the murder weapon, but whatever. The whole point of this question is so that Gumshoe can tell the court, "The ballistic markings on the bullet match the pistol." I was going to say that "ballistic" is kind of a big word for Gumshoe, but it does contain the word "ball," so mystery solved. If you've ever watched any crime show ever, you know about ballistic fingerprinting. Maya, on the other hand, has only ever watched shit like the Steel Samurai, so she's all, "Derpity derp, what's that now?" She says it loud enough for von Karma to hear, and he is shocked -- shocked! -- to his very core than anyone in the courtroom could possibly be ignorant on the topic. I'm shocked to my very core that he's shocked to his very core that someone in the courtroom could possibly be ignorant on any topic.

So just to be a dick, von Karma orders the Judge to explain ballistics to the teenage girl at the defense table. This should be good -- I imagine the Judge will just sit there going "DURRRRRRR" for several minutes. But speaking of being shocked to one's very core, the Judge actually produces a coherent and correct explanation of ballistic fingerprinting. Well, fuck me. Long story short for any Mayas out there: the markings on the bullet can be matched to the barrel of the gun that fired it. So in this case, the bullet that killed Bob Hammond was fired from the same pistol that has Edgeworth's fingerprints on it. Von Karma describes this way more dramatically than I did, complete with finger snaps and arched eyebrows, and the peanut gallery erupts in a frenzy.

Phoenix realizes how bad this looks for his sexy man toy and their future ability to engage in sweaty buttsex. The Judge, who as you'll recall was ready to hand down a guilty verdict in past cases based only on the word of lying assholes, is now presented with actual -- dare I say "hard" -- evidence against the defendant. Needless to say, he's pretty much ready to declare Edgeworth guilty right this second. But then von Karma does something incredibly stupid, especially for someone who is supposedly so amazing, he's never lost a single case. Instead of commanding the Judge to get on with the verdict already, he says something that makes me nauseous: "You wish to hear the witness speak, no doubt." No, that's impossible. No one wishes to hear Lotta speak. Von Karma orders a ten minute break due to feeling "somewhat fatigued," which does so much for his badass image. Even Phoenix, who acts like he's about to pass out at any second in the courtroom, can usually manage to handle one brief testimony. When the Judge doesn't immediately comply, von Karma loses his shit again, snapping his fingers and shaking the screen as he shouts, "Just bang your flimsy gavel and get on with it, man!" The comment about his gavel makes the Judge feel very small and unmasculine, so he timidly gives in to von Karma's demand. Phoenix hopes that Edgeworth notices how manly he looks in comparison.

No it doesn't.
 

The recess allows Phoenix to ream Edgeworth out in the defendant lobby. He's all, "What the fuck is up with this fingerprint shit?" Edgeworth just stammers and breaks out the puppy dog eyes, which leaves Phoenix powerless to resist. Ten minutes should give them plenty of time to, um, work out their issues. Then the mood is ruined when Lotta's blurry photo of the boat appears on screen and Phoenix reminds us that the tiny dildo holding the pistol is the only one who could have been the killer. Edgeworth agrees. "Was that you in the boat?" Phoenix asks, point blank. Their whole relationship is riding on this question. After a pause, Edgeworth admits, "Yes. It was me." Before Phoenix can slap him across the face and scream, "You bitch!", Edgeworth insists he didn't discharge any weapons, in any sense of the phrase. Oddly enough, this doesn't calm Phoenix down. Continuing to dramatically punctuate all of his sentences with "!?", he wants to know who the fuck shot the guy then. Edgeworth has no clue. "You don't know!? Weren't you right there!?" Phoenix screams in his face. I can understand his annoyance -- Edgeworth is being very withholding here. Really, he should have told all of this to Phoenix before the trial, including the part about fondling the gun. I'm not saying they should have foregone the reunion buttsex to talk about that shit, but Edgeworth probably could have skipped that downer of a conversation about his dead dad.

Anyway, Edgeworth doesn't say why he has no clear knowledge of what happened in the boat even though he could probably get away with claiming it was too dark to see. He just says he heard a nearby gunshot and then the other man fell in the water. At the time, Edgeworth thought the guy offed himself. Phoenix doesn't think anyone will buy that explanation. It does seem pretty iffy -- what are the chances that the dude would shoot himself right in the heart, drop the gun in the middle of the boat, and fall directly into the water without leaving any blood evidence? After I typed that, I realized how many more implausible things actually happen in this series. Even so, bringing up this possible scenario in court is not going to be the magic bullet (no pun intended) that gets Edgeworth off (pun intended). Also, I just want to add that if Edgeworth is telling the truth about not being the shooter, he's a Phoenix-level moron for touching the gun. Dogs know not to touch potential evidence.

That intense discussion took up too much time, so unfortunately, Phoenix will have to wait until later to punish Edgeworth. For now, he turns to Maya and asks if she's had any luck channeling Mia. Yes, Phoenix, she completely recovered her powers in the hour since the trial began. "Ugh..." Phoenix bitches like a total asshole. Seriously, I know his entire sex life is at risk here, but that doesn't excuse his behavior. Besides, as Sam pointed out, Phoenix shouldn't be relying on anyone else to save his boyfriend -- it's his job to be Edgeworth's hero. Phoenix's dickishness causes Maya to feel completely worthless: "If I can't call my sister, I might as well not be here, right?" Sure, a teenage girl is not Phoenix's preferred companion, but she's stuck by him through a lot of crap, such as the Steel Samurai case and his and Edgeworth's temporary breakup. The least he can do is reassure her, even if she is treading dangerously close to mopeytown. I get a dialogue choice here, but even if I pick the nice option, Phoenix comes across as an unconvincing butthole.

 
Yes, we're all aware of that.

To make matters worse, when he makes a sad attempt to cheer her up by saying she's just having an off day, he finishes with, "I mean, I've just been getting lucky, lately... But you never know when my luck is going to run out!" Of course Edgeworth overhears this and nearly has a heart attack. He doesn't comment on the rest of the conversation about Phoenix needing a dead defense attorney to handle the case, but I imagine that does nothing for his confidence either. Now that Phoenix has crushed the spirits of both his assistant and his lover, it's time to listen to Lotta's testimony. What a great day for everyone.

Back in the courtroom, von Karma calls Lotta Hart to the stand. In case you can't tell, I've been trying to put this off, but I guess I should just rip off the band-aid and get it over with. Lotta and her fro appear on screen, ready to ruin my day. "Lotta Hart, you are a research student at a university?" von Karma asks, cutting through the name and occupation shenanigans that Edgeworth normally has to deal with. Also, "university" should have quotes around it, I suspect. Lotta confirms the information, and von Karma tells her to describe what she saw. Again, "saw" should have quotes around it. When von Karma reminds her not to include any "trivial or subjective" bullshit, Lotta tells him he needs to learn some manners. Indeed he does, but I would also be happy not to deal with bullshit. They're both right and both wrong here.

All right, the fucking testimony. Just after midnight on Christmas Eve, Lotta was sitting in her car when a "bang" sounded from the lake. As she speaks, the dickboat appears on screen, taunting me. Lotta says she "saw two gents in a boat" which is her first obvious lie. Like I said in the previous recap, two men is the most obvious assumption, but there's no way she could have actually detected the genders of the two people. Well, I just thought of some ways in which that would be possible, but I'm not going to concede that Lotta is telling the truth. Then she heard a second "bang." "There wasn't nary a thing on the lake but that boat," she finishes.

Enjoy your nightmares.
 

Okay, I made it through that first testimony relatively unscathed. Just as I was about to say it wasn't as bad as I expected, von Karma has to fuck things up by introducing the God damn photo. I am not feeling as much hatred in my heart as I did toward THE PHOTO in the third case, so I will not be giving it the all-caps treatment, but that doesn't mean I'm happy about it. "This looks like... the very moment of the murder!" the Judge declares against a backdrop of sinister organ music. The peanut gallery overreacts again. I wonder what these people would do if ever presented with an honest-to-god incriminating photo.

Von Karma connects all the pieces for the Judge: Lotta took a photo of the boat, the photo shows the murder taking place, there were no other boats on the lake, Edgeworth was on the boat, therefore Edgeworth is the murderer. Complete peanut gallery chaos ensues yet again. Someone needs to sedate these motherfuckers. Plastering on his awful grin just to fuck with my head, von Karma prompts the Judge for a verdict. The Judge agrees that Edgeworth did this shit. "Very well, this court finds the defendant..." the Judge begins.

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