Thursday, January 31, 2013

The theme of trust in Ace Attorney 3. (not the original post from yesterday)

The last game in the Ace Attorney trilogy wrapped up a saga of love, law, and trust. (Obviously spoilers ahead)

I'm going to be focusing on the third game.  The first covers so many different kinds of love and the law in the Ace Attorney series is pretty messed up.

Trust, however, is a major point in the game.  Phoenix relies on trust because he may not always know what he is doing, but he knows what he is going for, an aquital.

He has trust in Maya, he has trust in Mia.  He has trust in Pearl, Miles, Larry, Gumshoe, and even Franciska has worked her way into his trust.

This all comes to a head in Case 3-5 where every bond he has built up gets tested.

Miles Edgeworth is the main testee.  Miles Edgeworth starts off in the first game as the rival.  As the unbeatable opponent.  As the man who would do ANYTHING to bring his opponent down.  He turns into someone much more complicated and worthy of the trust. I've talked about this before.   

Maya on her end always feels like she is never worthy of trust, but has fought and loved for the last three years so her trust can be given.  In the second game, it looks like nothing can help her, she doesn't even know if she is innocent, and yet she places her trust in Phoenix and he continues his eternal trust in her. 

Mia, despite being dead, has a large presence on the series because her family is a family of spirit mediums.  As a result, Maya or her cousin Pearl can summon Mia when needed.  As they can only have her there for limited times, Mia MUST be trusted because they can't really cross her or double check her information. 

Franciska throughout the second and a bit of the third games rapidly proves herself to be -while out for revenge- also interested in justice and does not cross lines.  While she may hide some information, she will never manipulate facts. 

Pearl is a little girl.  She can be trusted, partly because she has a horrible poker face.

Larry is an old school friend.  While he may unintentionally cause trouble, he will never intentionally act malicious or lie (even if he forgets things).  You may not like it, but you can trust him.

Detective Gumshoe works for the police, but he's also interested in justice being done to the right person.  He helps Phoenix out when he can. Sometime's it's physical help, sometimes it's information, but he does not lie and he has been fired for helping. 

This trust proves critical in the last case of game 3.  Maya has disappeared, her mother has been found dead in two places at the same time.  Pearl has also vanished.  Phoenix fell through a burning bridge and landed in a cold and swift river known for killing people, and no one is quite sure what happened.

Edgeworth trusts Larry enough when he says Phoenix is in danger to come back to the states. (Phoenix did have a bad cold but that's it.)  Phoenix trusts Edgeworth enough to have him do the work and help out in court despite how Edgeworth is a prosecutor.  And when spirit mediums and psychelocks come up, Edgeworth trusts Phoenix enough to just go along with it and accept it.  Gumshoe trusts everyone enough that they will do the right thing; that Edgeworth will protect the innocent, and that he will punish the guilty.  Franciska is trusted to help Phoenix when everyone is missing.  After all, she won't let anyone else get hurt.  Mia and Pearl have critical information that they can not reveal right away.  They are trusted when they appear that their witholding was not malicious or deliberate, and they know the truth.

If any of this was doubted, if anyone had lied.  If anyone was not worthy of the trust they were placed with when studying the case, then Maya would have been found guilty of matricide, the manipulator would have had the last laugh, and the killer would not have found his redemption.  (And, yes, that sentence makes sense in context.) 

I need to replay this level again.  The trust is heartbreaking and I'm lacking details. Though, you all should have played this game through before! It's worth it.

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