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"Luckily, before Clay can say anything else, speech bubbles containing huge exclamation points appear above the party's heads. We can safely assume that this means something has startled them. The something turns out to be an offscreen random stranger, who yells 'Who're you? What're you doing here?' Dude, you do NOT want to start a conversation with these people. Trust me on this one."
     -Ben, Breath of Fire IV Part 4




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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney : Part 3
By Jeanne
Posted 01.10.09
Pg. 1 : 2 : 3 : 4 : 5 : 6 : 7
In the last installment, Phoenix met up with Miles Edgeworth -- a very important, very sexy man from his past, who just happens to be a prosecutor. Phoenix obviously enjoys the rivalry and sexual tension created by their opposing positions -- the only downside is that Edgeworth is so obsessed with his precious guilty verdict, he even tried to get Phoenix declared guilty for a murder he didn't commit! Edgeworth is so going to have to put out for that one. Oh, and some other unimportant stuff happened, like Mia getting killed, and Phoenix successfully defending Mia's sister Maya and himself in court. But who cares about that stuff?

Sam also learned that recapping an entire multi-day case is not worth the pain and stress involved, so from this point on, we will be splitting up the cases. After all, the recaps should not be as long and hard as...well, you know what I'm getting at here.

The third episode, Turnabout Samurai, starts out a bit differently than the last two. Instead of horrible murder scenes, this one involves two costumed characters fighting using minimal animation and lots of talking. The content of their discussion isn't worth mentioning -- it's your typical clichéd smacktalking. The good guy resembles a robotic samurai, of all things. This is the aptly-named Steel Samurai. His rival is the Evil Magistrate. With a clash of phallic weapons, we appropriately segue to Wright & Co. Law Offices on the early evening of October 14. Now that there's no longer an icky woman's name on the door, the hotties should come pouring in. At the very least, Edgeworth should be quite impressed that Phoenix has his very own law office. Maybe they can do it on the leather couch!

Jeez, I haven't even set up the scene and Phoenix is already fantasizing about sweet buttsex with Edgeworth. Unfortunately, Phoenix is unable to carry out any of these fantasies, as Maya is present. She's all up in Phoenix's face, gushing over the Steel Samurai TV show as the epic Steel Samurai theme plays in the background for the first of what will be many, many times. Although Maya's sprite is standing still with her fists raised, Phoenix is shrieking at her to get the broom out of his face. I don't blame the game designers for failing to include a "broom thrusting" animation, but it's still funny when Phoenix has to narrate this shit. More importantly, Phoenix only likes phallic objects shoved in his face when they're attached to guys.

Maya gives Phoenix a ton of shit for not having a clue about the Steel Samurai. A promotional poster is displayed on the screen for our benefit. I would be remiss if I didn't mention the festive fan the Steel Samurai is holding, but that isn't the feature that catches my attention. When they converted the samurai topknot to metal, it, well, came out looking like someone soldered an anatomically correct dildo to the top of the Steel Samurai's head. And according to Maya, this is a children's program!

I don't think Phoenix really wants an answer to that question.
 

The target demographic of the show is 10-year-olds, so Maya's even more immature than us 12-year-old recappers. Now it's Phoenix's turn to hassle Maya about watching a kids' show. I would point and laugh at her as well, but I watched Pokémon when I was in college, so I don't want to be a dirty hypocrite. In turn, Maya rags on Phoenix for being an old fuddy-duddy at 24. They banter in this vein for a while, finally ending up on the subject of the office. Namely, that they've had no clients since, well, themselves.

In Wankese, Phoenix fills us in on the events -- or lack thereof -- of the past month. Everyone was all abuzz about Mia's trial, but not so much about the young gay lawyer who successfully found the true murderer. "How am I going to pay the rent this month?" Phoenix laments. I'm sure a certain fuchsia-loving prosecutor has cash to spare. Maybe Phoenix is just too proud to put Edgeworth in the position of sugar daddy -- there are plenty of other positions he'd like to put Edgeworth in, after all.

"I'm sure some big client is just around the corner," Maya assures Phoenix in a most foreshadowy manner. The action immediately cuts to Phoenix's bedroom at 8:14AM on the morning of the 16th. I just realized how those two sentences sound when read together, but I don't think I need to point out that Maya is not there in the bedroom with him. Since the game designers didn't see fit to create a backdrop for Phoenix's bedroom -- leaving us with the generic black screen -- we can imagine that he's curled up, nude, with a somewhat tousled Miles Edgeworth. Therefore, Phoenix is not too thrilled to receive a phone call from a frantic Maya.

"I-it's the Steel Samurai! The Steel Samurai got arrested!" Maya screams into the phone. Surprisingly, Phoenix is able to remember something he heard from over 24 hours ago -- namely, that the Steel Samurai is the hero of a TV show. "They're saying that the Steel Samurai killed a villain!" Maya "clarifies." A confused Phoenix wonders what the big deal is. Some more dialogue of wacky misunderstanding occurs before Maya gives up and just orders Phoenix to the office.

An hour later, Phoenix arrives. From this time frame, we can probably assume that he managed to score another quickie with Edgeworth before he left. Luckily, the television is on so that Phoenix can get his exposition from a news reporter rather than the incoherent Maya. This is where he learns that the actor who portrays the Steel Samurai, one Will Powers, has been charged with the murder of Jack Hammer, the guy inside the Evil Magistrate costume. As you may have noticed, the names in this particular episode have devolved into even lamer puns, although "Jack Hammer" is quite the appropriate moniker for someone in this series. Other appropriate names would include "Amanda Huggenkiss" and "Ben Dover" although the game designers have not delivered on those yet.

The news reporter continues to describe the incident -- Jack Hammer's body was discovered inside his costume, skewered by the inevitably phallic Samurai Spear. Maya is simply beside herself with grief. Not over the tragic loss of human life, but over the possibility that her favorite show will not continue. Before Phoenix can recall similar tragedies from his own experience, such as hearing the words "Not tonight honey, I have a headache" from Edgeworth, Maya's cell phone rings. She answers it, "Wright & Co. Law Offices," meaning that her very girly phone is the office's main contact number. The caller is none other than the Steel Samurai, Will Powers himself, and he's summoned Phoenix and Maya to the detention center. It's pretty obvious at this point that he's about to become their next client. Now, we all know of various stars who have gotten in trouble with the law, and there is no shortage of high-priced defense attorneys willing to take on their cases. So why would this guy have to hire a defense attorney with only two cases under his belt (not to be confused with how Edgeworth is often under his belt)? Why would the studio not cover his ass big time? The contrivance wizard is at it again!

 
And Phoenix is an expert on things that are swollen, after all.

Phoenix has a chance to discuss the situation with Maya before they actually make the trip to the detention center. A skeptical Phoenix thinks to himself that Maya's primary interest is not in the case, but in the opportunity to go ogle the Steel Samurai. As if any guy who regularly wears a metal sex toy on his head is going to be all about attention from the ladies. Although Phoenix knows nothing about what really happened with the whole murder thing -- this Will Powers guy might have done the deed, after all -- it's not like he has a lot of other pending cases at the moment. To the detention center!

When Maya catches her first glimpse of the man inside the Steel Samurai...let me rephrase that. When Maya sees Will Powers out of his costume...okay, that still sounds bad. God damn it. Okay, when Maya finally sees what Will Powers really looks like, her eyes grow as wide as saucers and she loses her ability to speak. I suppose her shock is understandable if she was expecting Mr. Powers to be some young, metrosexual hottie. Because he, well, isn't. I guess if I'm going to describe him in terms of homosexual jargon, he would be a classic bear. Huge and beefy, with wild hair and a thick patch of chest pubes, Will Powers is one scary-looking dude and most definitely not Phoenix's type. Plus, he wears a yellow and orange jumpsuit, which reminds Phoenix way too much of Larry Butz and his love of the color orange.

Hee: 'getting off.'
 

Will's terrifying presence has Maya convinced that he's definitely guilty, an opinion that she doesn't bother to hide in front of their client. How awesome for Phoenix that he has an assistant even less competent than he is. Luckily for Phoenix and his rent, Will Powers is deaf, dumb, or both, as he doesn't pick up on the exact details of Maya's loud, panicky screeching. He assumes, somewhat correctly, that Maya is "disappointed" in his not-hot appearance. This upsets him, causing him to whip out a lace handkerchief and clutch it to his face. Given this evidence, I'm not sure why he's distressed that a teenage girl finds him unattractive -- maybe he's just sensitive to any kind of criticism.

According to Will, he knows he's fugly and frightening, which is why he made the decision to never appear publicly until the Steel Samurai series has finished its run. "It's the kids, you know. I didn't want to wreck their dreams," he sobs into his lace doily. Okay, he's no Adonis, but I seriously doubt 10-year-old boys and girls are going to be scarred if the Steel Samurai isn't George Clooney, you know? At the end of this silly conversational turn, Will starts bawling when he realizes what the kids must think of him now. His priorities are just a little messed up, to put it lightly.

This completely unmasculine outburst from Mr. Powers is all it takes to convince Maya that he's innocent. The tragic, wrist-slitting music continues to play as Phoenix finally gets the option to talk to his client. Shuddering internally at the horrible fashion displayed by the man -- whoever told him orange was a good idea? -- Phoenix starts asking him about the actual murder. "It seems like it was only yesterday. Actually, it was only yesterday," Will begins. This is not a promising start. Phoenix would roll his eyes if this wasn't the exact type of dumb humor he so loves.

Will slumps over with a sappy, sheepish grin as he relates the story. The Steel Samurai cast had a run-through at Global Studios starting at 10AM. They were to reassemble for a rehearsal at 5PM, but when "the staff" arrived at that time, they found "the Evil Magistrate" dead as a doornail. The scene switches to a still black-and-white shot of the deceased Jack Hammer in his costume, sans mask, a bloodless hole in the massive rubber pectoral. Two figures lean over him, neither of them identifiable at the moment. The only one we can see in any detail is a rather rotund individual with a backwards baseball cap and a ponytail. I guess someone must have pulled out the assumed murder weapon, the Samurai Spear, as it's lying propped up on the arm of the costume. I'm sure the crime scene investigators would love that.

 
'I'll have you know I've been having sex with men for years!'

Anyone with a two-digit IQ or above could figure out what the Samurai Spear is, especially in the context of a show called the Steel Samurai. This means that Phoenix has to ask for clarification. In case there are any of you out there as slow in the head as Phoenix, it's the Steel Samurai's main weapon. And it's a spear. It also represents a penis.

When Phoenix basically asks, "Hey, what's this Steel Samurai thing anyway?" Maya totally flips out on him, falling all over herself to apologize to Will for her "OUT OF TOUCH" lawyer pal. She even uses the Caps Lock of Extreme Embarrassment like that. More upsetting than Phoenix's lack of knowledge about a children's television program is the fact that Maya already told him everything he needs to know about the Steel Samurai within the last 24 hours or so -- he should at least be able to remember that, even if he doesn't know the exact proportions of the Samurai Spear. Speaking of upsetting, I have to sit through another Steel Samurai primer, courtesy of Will Powers this time. When he gets to the part about how the Steel Samurai never successfully manages to defeat the Evil Magistrate (so that they can draw the series out to ridiculous lengths, no doubt) he suddenly remembers that the "Evil Magistrate" did indeed bite the big one. This sets off another deluge of tears. Good God, this guy cries more than Tidus. Phoenix doesn't really seem to care that Will just implied that the Steel Samurai (himself) was the one to lay the final, um, blow -- nope, he's more offended at the name of the show's setting: Neo Olde Tokyo. "Who comes up with these names!?" he blue-fonts in disbelief as the localization team gets a good chuckle at their own expense. Jesus.

On to more important things: Will Powers's alibi. Naturally, it's not going to be something at all verifiable. Against a very homoerotic black-and-white still of Will and Jack sparring with wooden rods (Will is on his back with his legs spread) -- Will explains that at noon they took a break from their gay wrestling action scenes. After lunch, he became drowsy and went to take a nap in his dressing room. He didn't wake until after 5PM, and when he arrived late at the studio for rehearsal, he happened upon the same black-and-white dead guy scene we saw earlier. "They arrested me on the spot and brought me here," he finishes. I guess this means the cops got there before Will woke up -- good thing they didn't bother to bust into his dressing room or something. He would have felt so violated.

Again, Phoenix's reaction seems a little off. Instead of worrying about the unverifiable nature of the alibi, he's shocked and appalled that an "action hero" could be such a lazy asshole. He prefers his heroes to be full of vigor. Will has no other information at the moment, and Phoenix would rather go stare at someone other than this guy in the orange velour jogging suit. Will Powers offers to draw a map to Global Studios, where the murder took place. I don't know how he'll actually pass it across to Phoenix, with the glass between them and all, but maybe we can assume Phoenix has a photographic memory. I'm just kidding, of course -- that would imply working brain cells.

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