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Turnabout Countdown
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For the demo version of this episode, see Turnabout Countdown (demo).

Ted Tonate

Episode 1: Turnabout Countdown is the first episode of the game Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies. It follows defense attorney Phoenix Wright's second case since being reinstated as an attorney after his disbarment in 2019. Wright must defend the schoolgirl Juniper Woods on the charge of planting a bomb that destroyed Courtroom No. 4, resulting in the death of Detective Candice Arme. The episode introduces Athena Cykes, Wright's new assistant, as well as reintroducing Apollo Justice, a lawyer introduced in Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney. This is the first time in the Ace Attorney series in which an introductory episode lasts more than one day, though ultimately this is for plot-related reasons and does not notably impact the episode's length. This episode is available for free with the base game of the iOS version, though the other episodes must be purchased individually or as a set.


  • "Trial - Day 1"
    • "The Trial Begins"
    • "Cross-Examining Tonate"
    • "Juniper's Mood Matrix"
    • "Courtroom Ruins"
  • "Trial - Day 2"
    • "The Trial Reconvenes"
    • "Cross-Examining Juniper"
    • "Decoding the Bloody Writing"
    • "Indictment"
    • "The Final Cross-Examination"
    • "Post-Trial Wrap-Up"


To edit the information in this table, go to Template:Timeline and edit the information there.
Date Event type / related incident Description Notes
December 16, 2027 Turnabout Countdown Candice Arme is murdered. N/A
December 17-18, 2027 Turnabout Countdown Trial of Juniper Woods for the bombing of Courtroom No. 4 and the murder of Candice Arme. Apollo Justice is attacked during a court recess, and this incident is added to the charges. N/A

The bombing[]

Turnabout Countdown-4

The bomb detonates.

A trial was in session. Suddenly, a bomb squad officer alerted the court that a time bomb had been activated. The bomb's timer ticked down amid the ensuing chaos of people escaping from the courtroom. A terrifying explosion rocked the courtroom and reduced it to rubble.

After the incident, at the Wright Anything Agency, Athena Cykes prepared herself for another trial and then left for the District Court. In her excitement, she tripped while climbing a stairwell. Later, Phoenix Wright was conversing on the phone. He talked about Cykes, then made a bold declaration:

Phoenix Wright
Yeah, it's for this very reason I returned... Time to bring it to an end.

He, too, dressed up for the trial and left. Meanwhile, Apollo Justice stood alone in the courtroom ruins and gazed at the moon.

Elsewhere, a man with strange goggles smiled menacingly down at the small metal box in his hands. Wires stuck out from one side of the box, and on another side was a timer readout. The top of the box had a bright red light on it.

Heh heh heh! The best thing about bombs is how they erase and destroy... without discretion. Now all I have to do is pin everything on that little girl!

December 17 trial[]

9:22 a.m.

Athena Cykes waited for the trial to start, trying to hide her nervousness from Apollo Justice, her coworker who was injured in the courtroom bombing, and Juniper Woods, her childhood friend and the trial's defendant. Justice was to lead the defense team for the trial. Just before the trial started, however, the wounds Justice had sustained reopened. With Justice in no condition to defend, Cykes took all the case evidence and, despite Justice's reservations and her own nervousness, stood in as Woods' attorney.

"The Trial Begins"[]

9:46 a.m.

The Phony Phanty doll.

Dead Arme 2

Detective Arme's body.

The trial began. After a brief verbal row between Cykes and prosecutor Gaspen Payne, the latter gave his opening statement. During a trial in Courtroom No. 4 the previous day, a bomb, hidden inside an elephant doll named "Phony Phanty" that had been presented as evidence, had suddenly detonated. While most present were evacuated to safety, the body of Detective Candice Arme was discovered near the courtroom's entrance in the aftermath. Woods was called to the stand, whereupon it was revealed that the burnt tail of the doll was found with Woods' fingerprints on it.

With such damning evidence against Woods, Cykes suddenly had flashbacks of a trial from years past. She found herself unable to speak, and she nearly gave into despair. Just then, however, Phoenix Wright arrived, having been called by Justice, to take over for the defense. He pointed out that many matters still needed to be deliberated before a ruling could be given.

"Cross-Examining Tonate"[]

Woods returned to the gallery to rest, and Payne called bomb disposal specialist Ted Tonate to the stand. Tonate testified that he was the first one to discover Arme's body. He presented a photo of the bomb itself, an "HH-3000" model. He also testified that he had initially disarmed the bomb before the trial. However, he claimed to have seen the bomb's timer reactivate. Wright pointed out that this was impossible, since the bomb had been hidden inside the Phony Phanty doll.

A momentarily flustered Tonate replied that he had heard the timer make a beeping sound to indicate that it had been activated. When asked why Woods was thought to have reactivated the bomb, Payne and Tonate explained that when the bomb was brought to the lobby, the bomb's remote switch had disappeared. They accused Woods of stealing the remote switch and using it to rearm the bomb during the trial. In fact, they said that the bomb had been secured in a bomb transport case, which was assigned to Tonate by his ID - L10015R - and which only he could open. This meant that the bomb could only have been detonated remotely.

"Juniper's Mood Matrix"[]

Woods was called back to the stand to clear up this matter. Payne started pressuring her. Cykes sensed Woods' fear as she testified about the explosion and the rubble that had fallen on her. With Woods unable to get her words out, Wright had Cykes use her ability to hear the emotions of others to draw out more of Woods' testimony. Cykes turned on her Mood Matrix and analyzed the testimony to find a feeling of happiness when she mentioned the falling rubble. When asked about this, Woods remembered that Justice had shielded her from the rubble, causing his injuries.

Phony Phanty & Bum Rap Rhiny

Phony Phanty and Bum Rap Rhiny.

Woods modified her testimony to account for this new fact. Wright found it odd that, in addition to happiness and shock, Woods also felt grief when Justice rescued her. Woods explained that she had a "Bum Rap Rhiny" doll with her, but had lost it during the courtroom evacuation. Woods showed Wright a poster depicting Bum Rap Rhiny and Phony Phanty, and Wright realized that the tail with Woods' fingerprints on it was not Phony Phanty's but Bum Rap Rhiny's.

With the charges against Woods now considered unsubstantiated, the judge closed the day's proceedings to allow for further investigation.

"Courtroom Ruins"[]

11:56 a.m.

Back in the lobby, Wright and Cykes praised Woods for her bravery in court. Likewise, Wright commended Cykes for holding her own in court before he arrived, and helping to turn the case around with her Mood Matrix. In the midst of chatting, Cykes and Wright wondered where Justice had gone. Woods replied that he was probably still in Courtroom No. 4. Having told Justice about Bum Rap Rhiny, the two of them had gone back to the courtroom ruins to look for it during the trial. However, during their search, Woods was called into court to testify again, leaving Justice to search alone. Out of concern for Justice's injuries and wanting to know if he found a new piece evidence, Wright, Cykes, and Woods headed to Courtroom No. 4.

12:11 p.m.

Cykes opened the courtroom doors and called out to Justice. As she looked around, she and the others were horrified to find him unconscious next to a bloodstained piece of rubble. Cykes screamed in horror.

December 18 trial[]

9:34 a.m.

Phoenix Wright, Athena Cykes and Juniper Woods regrouped in Defendant Lobby No. 5 the next morning. Apollo Justice had been rushed to the hospital. Woods was distraught, believing that it was her fault that Justice had been attacked. Cykes calmed her down and insisted to Wright that she was fine. Although the events had prevented Wright from conducting an investigation of the incident, he prepared himself as best he could for the trial.

"The Trial Reconvenes"[]

9:50 a.m.

The trial began. The prosecution reported that it had failed to find the remote switch for the bomb. However, Gaspen Payne brought up Justice's assault. He claimed that Justice had found something incriminating while investigating Courtroom No. 4, and that Woods had taken this opportunity to silence him. A diagram of the courtroom was submitted.

Message from Polly 1

The apparent message from Justice.

"Cross-Examining Juniper"[]

Woods was called to testify on the matter. She guessed that Justice had found something concerning the courtroom bombing, which Payne interpreted as evidence incriminating her. Payne added to his claim a photo of Justice as he lay on the courtroom floor, which apparently showed bloody writing reading "WOODS". Wright could not comment on this, since security guards had cordoned off the area as soon as they heard Cykes scream, preventing him from getting a good look at the scene.

Wright asked Woods why she and Justice had gone to the courtroom ruins in the first place. Woods replied that they were looking for her cough medicine, which had been inside the Bum Rap Rhiny doll. She added that Justice started looking near the witness stand, where there was no rubble. At this, Wright referred to the diagram, which showed that the witness stand was surrounded by rubble, and the only opening was blocked by the bomb transport case.

To clarify the state of Justice's surroundings, Payne presented a more pulled-back photo of the scene. Woods recognized the bomb transport case in this new photo, and she said that it had been positioned more to the right of where it was shown in the diagram. Wright realized that the bomb transport case had been where the bloody writing was now. To prove this, he pointed out that the wheels of the bomb transport case had made tracks, which went over Justice's bandages. Thus, it had to have been moved after the assault, and so Justice could not have written the bloody message.

"Decoding the Bloody Writing"[]


The original message.

At this, the judge wondered, to everybody's surprise, "If Mr. Justice didn't leave this message in blood, then who did?" Wright eventually deduced that only one other person could have written the message: the victim, Candice Arme. In fact, she, not Justice, had shed enough blood to write the entire message. Knowing that Woods had never met the victim, Wright pointed to the identification number on the bomb transport case - L10015R - and claimed that the real culprit had added two lines to Arme's original message to have it read "WOODS". This meant that Arme was actually pointing to Ted Tonate as the one responsible for the bombing.


Wright indicted Tonate as the real culprit. To bolster his claim, he added that Tonate had been the first to find Arme's body, giving him the opportunity to use the bomb transport case to hide her message. He had then attacked Justice and altered Arme's message to implicate Woods. Tonate was called back to the stand, where he asked for proof that Arme had indeed written the message. Wright requested an analysis of the DNA on the bloody writing. While the court waited for the test results, Tonate argued that Arme had struck her head on rubble and died near the courtroom entrance, far from where the writing was. Payne submitted a photo of the body to corroborate this, which showed a bloodstain on a sharp corner of a piece of rubble. Wright countered this with Arme's autopsy report, which stated that the victim had succumbed to a hit from a flat object, contrary to where the bloodstain had been found. The bloodstain was just another fabrication. The blood testing results then came back. As the defense's argument had predicted, the original message was in Arme's blood, while the additions were in Justice's blood.

"The Final Cross-Examination"[]

Tonate decided to confess that Wright's claims were all true, except that he was not the bomber or the killer. He claimed that he had clearly seen "L10015R" written on the floor, and he feared that Arme had mistaken him for the bomber. Wright disagreed, saying that the last "R" was missing from the message. Tonate tried to chalk this up to a mistake on his part, but Wright replied that he really had seen the last "R", and indicated some blood after the "5", where the floor was broken up. Wright claimed that an "R" must have existed in that area before the floor had been damaged, which meant that Arme had been murdered before the bombing. Wright argued that Tonate had returned the body to the courtroom ruins after the bombing to make it look as if she had died in the explosion.

Payne looked through the police reports and found that Tonate was the only person who had been with Arme before the trial. Tonate insisted that he had met Arme only for the purpose of transporting the bomb. Payne added that Wright had not accounted for the murder weapon, but Wright replied that the bomb had been used to bludgeon the victim. Tonate pointed out that Wright had no evidence for his latest claim, since all such evidence had been blown to bits along with the bomb. However, Wright demanded that Tonate open the bomb transport case, where he had hidden the body in the time gap between the murder and the bombing.

Suddenly, Tonate said that the bomb replica he was carrying was the real HH-3000. He claimed that he had stolen it before the trial and replaced it with a bomb that he had made, which was the bomb that had exploded. He warned everyone that he had set the HH-3000 bomb to blow in five minutes. Everyone ran from the courtroom except Wright, Cykes, and the judge.

Wright stood his ground, realizing that none of what Tonate had said was true. He pointed to the photo of the bomb, which showed that the real HH-3000's timer had been broken, presumably from being used to bludgeon Arme. Wright then opened the bomb transport case himself, and inside was a bloodstain from Arme's body. With no options left, Ted Tonate desperately tried to disarm his fake bomb, and he managed to delay the timer with two seconds remaining by slamming his chin onto the bomb. However, the impact caused his goggles to explode, and as Tonate collapsed, the timer reactivated, counted down to zero, and declared that Tonate had lost the game.


Arme confronting Tonate.

Tonate admitted to the murder and assault. He revealed that he had been selling the bombs he dismantled on the black market, and he had killed Arme in a panic when she caught him trying to steal the HH-3000. The judge placed him under arrest, pending a trial to determine his guilt for the courtroom bombing. As the people in the gallery returned, the judge rendered a not guilty verdict for Woods.

"Post-Trial Wrap-Up"[]

12:31 p.m.
Apollo Justice Anime

Justice declares his leave of absence.

Athena Cykes Anime

Cykes confused over Justice's actions.

Wright, Cykes and Woods congratulated each other on winning the trial. Cykes wondered what had happened to the remote switch, but Wright replied that they should just leave that matter to the police and celebrate. Cykes agreed and they all headed to the hospital to bring the good news to Justice. Wright also mentioned that another trial was just on the horizon.

However, after the three lawyers returned to the Wright Anything Agency, Justice said that he would be taking a leave of absence. When asked for a reason, he merely replied that there was a matter that he needed to settle on his own. Cykes had seen Justice change ever since he had donned his blue jacket, and she wondered why he was pushing her and Wright away. She thought back to her first meeting with Justice in the past spring...

References to other cases[]

  • When discussing Woods' alleged motive for the courtroom bombing, Payne suggests that she may have harbored a grudge against the court system due to false charges brought up against her in the past. This is a reference to the events of Turnabout Academy, which takes place two months before Turnabout Countdown.
  • In the second part of the trial, Wright thinks, "(Assaulted in a court of law and losing your memory at that... I know how that feels...)" This is a reference to The Lost Turnabout, in which Wright was assaulted by the real culprit and lost his memory.
    • Coincidentally, this happened to both Justice and Wright in the first episode of the second game they each appeared in.
  • After badgering Woods, Payne calls himself a "genteel-man". His older brother Winston Payne also says this in Turnabout Memories.

Cultural references[]

  • Athena says: "Uh, I guess this makes you the Blue Monkey in this barrel of fun, Boss...". As Payne calls Apollo "Red Monkey" and Athena "Yellow Monkey", this is likely referring to the game Barrel of Monkeys, a chain-making with different colored monkeys.
  • The HH-3000 and its replica bomb resemble the GameCube, one of Nintendo's home video game consoles.
  • Just before the second half of the trial, Wright says, "Let's get ready to rumble!", which is the catchphrase of American boxing and professional wrestling ring announcer Michael Buffer.
  • When Tonate mocks the defense for not finding any of the victim's blood on the bomb due to it exploding, he says "It's long gone! Boom! Game over! Yeaaah!" The final part is a reference to the upbeat "Game Over" jingle in the Sega Rally racing video games (which can be listened to here).
  • When Tonate starts to breakdown, Phoenix thinks "Mad Bomber, party of one." This is a reference to the Mad Hatter and his mad tea party in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
  • Whilst Woods is describing Justice during the second day of the trial, Phoenix thinks to himself that, "with the way she talks about him, you would think Apollo was some sort of ancient god", before realizing what he just said.


  • The episode was conceived around the notion of the courtroom being bombed. Producer Motohide Eshiro wanted Phoenix Wright and Apollo Justice to be in the episode, and told director Takeshi Yamazaki that something had to be changed about the latter. Eshiro also told Yamazaki to "think big". Yamazaki's first proposal was the courtroom being destroyed, with no other details established. Eshiro drew parallels to a tagline on the box of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Trials and Tribulations: "The courtroom shakes."[1]
  • This case's property of being the first case of its game, but involving the fourth/penultimate incident chronologically, is shared with the first case of Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth.
  • This is so far the only introductory episode in the entire series to go through more than one day of a trial, with Turnabout Countdown going through two days, while every other case goes through one day of trials.
  • Although Tonate does go on to change it, this is the first case in the Ace Attorney series in which a victim has actually identified their killer in writing during their final moments, rather than just being the killer's attempt to frame another individual (as was the case in Turnabout Sisters, the SL-9 Incident, The Lost Turnabout, Bridge to the Turnabout, Turnabout Visitor, The Forgotten Turnabout, and Turnabout Storyteller).
  • In the original Japanese language version of the game, Tonate's identification number is "511103UR". When the victim writes this number in her blood, Tonate changes it by adding two lines to change "5111" to "SIN" and "03U" to "OBU" to spell "SINOBU", which is the kunrei rōmaji spelling of Juniper Woods' given name in Japanese (しのぶ; Shinobu). In an unofficial Chinese translation of the game, Tonate's identification number is "1IAORE11F". He changes the victim's writing of this number by adding two lines to change "1IAO" to "XIAO" and "RE11" to "REN" to spell "XIAOREN". "REN" is the Hanyu Pinyin of "忍", Juniper Woods' given name translated into Chinese, while "XIAO" is "小", a common Chinese translation of the Japanese title affixed to familiar people's names (ちゃん; -chan).
  • Originally, the characters, and by extension the player, were going to be mislead into believing that Justice had been murdered until a twist right at the end revealed him to be alive. However this was considered too harsh, particularly for the first case, and so Justice is revealed to have just been assaulted almost immediately. Remnants of this idea can still be seen however, in the way that Justice's assault is treated akin to a murder (photos taken of his "body", alleged "dying" message), along with a joke that occurs several times, where Wright comments that people are referring to Apollo as though he died.[2]
  • This case is one of the two only cases in Dual Destinies that do not involve the victim dying due to stabbing, with the other being Turnabout Reclaimed.


  • Before Ted Tonate's first testimony, the judge asks Tonate, "Being a bomb squad specialist, do you have any relation to the defendant?" However, Tonate goes on to talk about the victim Candice Arme, not about the defendant Juniper Woods. Based on the context, it would make more sense for the judge to ask about Tonate's relation to Arme. Fixed for Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy.
  • After Wright implicates Ted Tonate as Candice Arme's murderer, Tonate compares Wright's theory to "a tangled ball of wires". He then says, "I've have them untangled for you in no time at all!" This is corrected in the iOS version.
  • Just before he attempts to leave the courtroom with the HH-3000, Tonate says, "if I think I think I'm being followed I will detonate it on the spot". This is corrected in the iOS version.


  1. Ash (2023-11-06). "The Answer to Unfinished Matters - A Story Of Succession: Eshiro Motohide & Yamazaki Takeshi (2013) ". Gyakuten Saiban Library. Retrieved 2023-11-07.
  2. (2015). "The Art of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies -". UDON. ISBN 978-1927925447.