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"Then he whines and screams some more, the end. As much as that behavior suits Tightass, this guy is very, very clearly not him. Yuna, being his ONE TWOO WUUV and all, should see this right away, but she doesn't. Probably because she keeps telling herself that Doppelwank is Tightass just so she can preserve her deluded fantasy, but we also have to consider that Yuna's a moron."
     -Sam, Final Fantasy X-2 Part 1

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney : Part 8
By Jeanne
Posted 05.22.13
Pg. 1 : 2 : 3 : 4 : 5 : 6 : 7 : 8 : 9 : 10 : 11 : 12
In the last recap, Sam covered all the crazy shit that happened on the second day of Miles Edgeworth's murder trial. It was a busy 24 hours for Phoenix -- he destroyed Lotta's faith in Jesus, played around with multiple phallic objects belonging to Gumshoe, and watched as his ex-boyfriend's dipshit testimony was more effective than his own lawyering skills in proving Edgeworth's innocence. Through it all, Sam tried to discover the real identity of Larry's girlfriend Kiyance -- so far the lead candidate is Edgeworth. The Judge extended the trial one more day after the totally mysterious boat shop caretaker disappeared mid-trial, right after Phoenix accused him of being the actual murderer. Oh, and Edgeworth decided to confide in Phoenix about a recurring nightmare he has about committing murder, which was out of the blue and I'm sure will have nothing to do with anything.

Weirdly, when the game picks back up, Phoenix is back at the office after not getting any further explanation from Edgeworth about his strange confession. I guess the game designers were trying to give us a dramatic cliffhanger, but it's kind of odd that the conversation just ended there. Maya asks what the hell Edgeworth was referring to with his red font, and the game rewinds thirty seconds so that we can see Edgeworth repeat his last two sentences from the lobby. Thanks, game designers. Maya continues to wonder if Edgeworth actually killed someone, which unleashes Phoenix's protective side. "[He'd] never take someone's life! Never!" Phoenix screams in her face. I find it hard to believe that Edgeworth hasn't at least entertained homicidal thoughts when they were on a date and Phoenix wore the wrong shoes with his suit.

'Probably from that time I didn't use enough lube.'

Just then Larry Butz busts into the office, interrupting Phoenix's embarrassing display of emotion. He thrusts his thumbs-up sign into the camera like he's about to jam his thumb into Phoenix's butthole. As fuchsia spots appear on his cheeks, he gushes over what he thinks was his amazing courtroom performance, and he wants Maya and Phoenix to fawn over him as well. Maya admits to "feeling faint" during Larry's big moment, which he takes as a compliment. Then he starts in on Phoenix. "Tell me the truth, it was love at first sight, right? Right, Nick?" He's totally into womanly female models, you guys! When Phoenix gives the same lukewarm response as Maya -- he'll be damned if he's going to give Larry any satisfaction -- Larry gets all bent out of shape. "I think you can do better than that!" he says suggestively. "C'mon! I saved Edgeworth in there, dude! Edgey! You guys should be bowing before me! Yeah! Bow before your hero!" Wow. Now we have proof -- or hard evidence, if you prefer -- that Larry's ultimate sexual goal is to dominate Phoenix and Edgeworth during a three-way. Phoenix bristles a bit over Larry's casual mention of wanting Edgeworth to blow him, without having any idea that this probably happened already on Christmas Eve. For some reason Larry's sparkly tears are running down his face during all of this, like he's just so overcome by this sexy scenario even his eyes are jizzing.

Phoenix can't stand to see him like this, plus he doesn't need any more stains on his office rug, so he humors Larry and thanks him for managing to cast reasonable doubt on the case against Edgeworth. Although Larry agrees that Grandpa is totally suspicious, there's still something strange going on with Edgeworth. Way to kill Phoenix's giant defense boner that he's still sporting from the trial. He also gets on Phoenix's shitlist by making an Edgey/edgy pun. Then Larry adds, "I mean, can you really know he's telling the truth about that night?" Holy shit, is Larry trying to get caught here? Assuming that Edgeworth is engaged in an on-again/off-again affair with Larry Butz, I'm positive he would not want Phoenix or anyone else to know about this, and not just because he's trying to spare Phoenix's feelings. I can only imagine the threats he's made against Larry to keep this whole thing a secret. Of course Larry is the world's worst secret keeper, which Edgeworth should already know. Getting in a boat at night with a stranger was not the biggest miscalculation Edgeworth made that night.

Luckily Phoenix is dumber than a bag of rocks, so he doesn't pick up on this and probably just thinks Larry is referring to Edgeworth's midnight boat ride. And then things get even more awkward and painful for me when Phoenix says, "But...what I do know is... I'm going to believe in you two until the end." Maya thinks Phoenix is referring to her and Edgeworth, raising the level of awkward, since Phoenix admits he's referring to Edgeworth and Larry. Yes, Phoenix is going to trust his boyfriend and his ex-boyfriend, the two men he cares about most. They would never betray him! Maya seems a bit hurt that she's not included in the list of deep, trusting relationships in Phoenix's life, but she's mainly tired that Phoenix is still holding out on her about his past with these two men.

Plus, Maya also wonders why Phoenix trusts Edgeworth so much, since he's been a total dick to them for pretty much the entire game. Phoenix is all, "You don't know him like I do!" Like, no shit, obviously Maya is not fucking him. But Phoenix is not just talking about that aspect of their relationship -- of course his deep, penetrating trust of Edgeworth goes back to their elementary school days. I kind of wish I hadn't phrased it that way. Anyway, the music in the background turns melodramatic as Phoenix admits, "They saved me... Miles... And Larry. They saved me and I'll never forget it. That's why I became a defense attorney, you know." Maya is all surprised over this, and asks Larry about the monumental lifesaving occasion that led to Phoenix deciding his career path at age nine. Of course Larry doesn't fucking remember any of this, and the soundtrack basically record scratches here. Maya, like the rest of us, wants to know all the dirty details. Or not so dirty, since I hope none of us are actual pedophiles.

That applies to everything in this section of the game.

Phoenix finally breaks down and agrees to tell the entire story, warning Maya and the rest of us that it's a long one. The story, I mean -- why would he need to warn Maya about his penis? So back during the spring of fourth grade, some kid got his lunch money stolen, a whopping $38. Suddenly Larry remembers this incident, possibly because 38 is the number of buttsex (3 <==8 ... 3=8 ... 38). "I can see why you'd forget though. You were out of school that day," Phoenix reminds him. This becomes stupid in a few minutes. The melodramatic music cues back up as Phoenix continues his story. Because the theft happened during PE, and Phoenix got to skip PE that day due to a cold, everyone automatically assumed he was the thief. It's silly that Phoenix would have just been sitting alone in the classroom that entire time and not, say, sitting on the sidelines of the PE class, but whatever, this whole scenario is pretty contrived anyway.

Speaking of contrived, Phoenix goes on, "The kids in class said I should be put on trial. [...] So the next day we held a classroom trial, with me as the defendant." Yes, that sounds exactly like something a bunch of nine year olds would insist on doing and that a teacher would also support. Like, what happened to just calling the kid's fucking parents? What a weird school. The screen changes to a sepia-toned still image where the desks in the classroom are arranged in an approximation of the in-game courtroom. There are two judges, two prosecutors, and two defense attorneys. The rest of the kids sit at the back of the room -- I guess they're the overdramatic peanut gallery. In the center of all this, young Phoenix stands behind the witness box, another desk. He is wearing a very unstylish shorts and t-shirt combo, and he spiked the bejeezus out of his hair, even back then. He's facing away from the camera, but he looks like he's wiping his eyes, so he's probably crying like a little Tidus. This sad tableau is accompanied by about twenty text boxes full of random shit these asshole kids are screaming at Phoenix. I won't list them all here, but they include such gems as "He shouldn't be allowed in the relay race! Or on the library committee!" and "Hey, did you rob that bank the other day?" Seriously, this is the strangest bunch of kids ever. Even the teacher gangs up on him, all Captain Obvious about how stealing is wrong. "In the end, even the teacher thought I'd done it," present Phoenix sobs. The still image switches to a sepia-toned young Phoenix crying like a girl behind his desk -- Sam mentioned this all the way back in Part 2, so now we know what Phoenix was referring to with his nauseating comment about defending people who have no one else.

Phoenix describes his horror at being ganged up on, and his uncontrollable weeping in front of everyone. "I tried to apologize. I went over to where the boy was sitting... That's when it happened." Over a black screen, we see the "Objection!" graphic, followed by a lot of yelling. "He shouldn't have to apologize! The only thing that belongs in a trial is evidence! Anything else has no place! You should all be ashamed...amateurs!" This dramatic outburst is from young Miles, illustrated by a sepia image of him in full-on blowjob-mouthed pointy pose. For some reason, he's left-handed here -- I guess that's another thing that changed about him after DL-6. More importantly, he's wearing a little suit jacket and bowtie along with his culottes and knee socks. As Sam said, he must have burst out of his mom's vagina in a cloud of fuchsia glitter for his parents to know to dress him like the little gay boy he is. It turns out that Miles is the theft victim here, which I'm guessing is why he isn't at one of the lawyer tables in the previous still image. It would be a conflict of interest, like that means anything in this game. But he takes over as Phoenix's lawyer here, continuing to punctuate his defense of Phoenix with exclamation points. I don't want there to be any misunderstandings because I mean this in the most platonic way possible, but no wonder Phoenix developed a crush on this kid.

I am not comfortable with the positioning here.

Unintimidated by Miles's bowtie and knee socks, the dickhead bullies in the class continue to insist that Phoenix is guilty, and they don't need any of this proof bullshit. That's when someone else cuts in: "Why don't you all just shut up!!!" The extra punctuation indicates an even more spastic character, so of course this is Larry. "This is always how it is, everybody ganging up and picking on one person. Just think how he feels! He said he didn't do it, so he didn't do it!" Sepia Larry is wearing a wife beater and what look to be hot pants. Like the other two members of the ambiguously gay trio, he has the exact same haircut as his current self, but no pubey beard. Man, I am glad I didn't have to pick one hairstyle at age nine and stick with it, because I had a permed mullet back then.

The teacher can't stand up to Miles's and Larry's impassioned defense of Phoenix, so she's all, "Okay, fine, I'll replace the fucking money. Court is adjourned." And that's how the ambiguously gay trio was formed. "After that, the three of us were always friends," Phoenix understates. Returning to the present day, Maya has tears in her eyes over this very moving story. Larry tries to play it off like he forgot about the whole thing again, and now we see why Phoenix's earlier reason for Larry's forgetfulness is pretty stupid. He might have been gone the day of the theft, but he was there the next day -- obviously he would have found out about it! I'm not saying it's improbable that Phoenix is the only one that remembers this incident -- I'm just pointing out that he said something dumb.

"That's when I learned what it meant to be alone. Totally alone, without a friend in the world," Phoenix wanks. I hate to admit this, but I had a similar experience with my classmates ganging up on me when I was ten -- minus the two gay kids defending me -- which may or may not have been due to my horrifying haircut. The only reason I'm bringing this up is that I am totally qualified to say that Phoenix needs to get the fuck over it. I'm not trying to discourage him from pursuing adult buttsex with his two male friends, but using that whole experience as the basis for trusting them? Ridiculous. Phoenix is such a doofus.

Maya is so impressed with Larry for standing up for Phoenix fifteen years ago, but he admits that he was just being a selfish butthole: "I was just lucky that I took the day off from school. If I'd been there they would have thought I'd done it! So, I took it kind of personally, see." He might as well have said, "MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE." Also, this statement makes it clear he's lying about not remembering -- big shock there. "'When something smells, it's usually the Butz.'" Phoenix reminds himself and the rest of us in blue font. And now I'm picturing Larry with a hygiene problem, which is not attractive.

But Phoenix isn't done reminiscing. I get a new conversational option called "Edgeworth's goals." From the title, I expect this to be a list with items such as "design new line of lace cravats" and "teach Phoenix how to last longer." But no, Phoenix is referring to Edgeworth's goals when he was a kid. After the class trial, Phoenix approached Edgeworth and they got to talking, which would have totally ended with them hooking up if they'd been older. Here, it just resulted in Edgeworth talking about his super awesome, famous defense attorney dad. "I remember, his eyes would shine when he talked about his father," Phoenix sighs, wishing that Edgeworth would look at him like that. Over the pointy pose sepia image of himself, young Miles rhapsodizes, "I'm going to become a defense attorney, just like my Dad! A famous defense attorney!" The wrist-slitting soundtrack starts up again, as Phoenix narrates, "Then a few months later, he suddenly transferred to another school." Except wouldn't it be, like, eight or nine months later? Whatever, we should just be impressed that Phoenix can remember the details of his past at all, considering he can't remember shit from scene to scene as an adult. Speaking of which, when Maya mentions the DL-6 incident, Phoenix responds, "Right. I'm not sure, but the transfer probably had to do with his father's death." Holy shit, you think? Jesus, Phoenix. I feel like we've established this a thousand times already.

'As I cried it out in the bedroom.'

"It was several years later when I heard Edgeworth's name again," Phoenix recalls. "There was an article about him in the newspaper. The headline was something like 'Dark Suspicions of a Demon Attorney.'" I call shenanigans on Phoenix actually reading a newspaper. If he did in this one instance, it's only because there was probably a sexy photo of adult Miles on the front page, and the headline made him sound all kinky. According to Phoenix, the article mentioned all the terrible things that Edgeworth allegedly did on a regular basis, such as evidence forgery and witness manipulation. "The article said he'd do anything to get a guilty verdict. Anything," Phoenix recites with a shudder, thinking of all the things he himself would not be willing to do. We covered this back in Part 6, but Edgeworth himself admitted that this reputation applies to von Karma more than it does to him. Also, as much manipulative shit as we've seen Edgeworth pull in this game, the worst thing he actually did was present the iffy autopsy report in the second case, and it wasn't clear whether that was actually a forgery. So Phoenix really has no actual proof of any of the accusations in that article.

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