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Web Animation / Operation: Turnabout

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Captain Harvey: Absolution... Is that truly what you have come for?
???: You know exactly what I have come for, Sir. I haven't forgotten.

Operation: Turnabout (aka Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney — Operation: Turnabout) is an original Ace Attorney fancase by Team LordIban presented in the format of voice-acted animation, with TheGoldCrow reprising his role as Phoenix Wright from the unrelated Turnabout Storm.

Some time after the events of PW: AA: Trials & Tribulations, Phoenix and Maya get a brand new case to solve. Mike November, a private at the Allied Nations' Peace Corps, is accused of murdering Captain Janus Harvey, his superior and the head of the Engineering Company with a pressure explosive detonated inside the captain's office.

Colorful characters and hijinx await Phoenix and Maya as they attempt to solve the mystery of Captain Harvey's death.

See also Phoenix Wright: Devil's Attorney, an earlier series by the same creators and Turnabout Jackpot for the latest series by the team.


Operation: Turnabout provides examples of:

  • Animal Motifs: Adel Renard seems to have a fox motif. His last name is the French word for 'fox,' the badge on his beret resembles a fox head, and when he reveals the full extent of his involvement in the Helios 6 Incident, his grin makes it look like he has fangs when he speaks.
  • Anti-Villain: Both Dr. Jason Siegfried and Lt. Irene Victoria. They plotted to kill Harvey with a bomb hidden in a plaster bust and make it seem like a suicide with a forged note, but had a change of heart when they realized Mike November had run off to meet Captain Harvey and into possible death, and show much remorse for their actions. Very much averted with the true killer, Adel Renard.
  • Asshole Victim: Cpt. Janus Harvey, so very much. Not one subordinate or colleague of his feels anything but contempt for him and relief that he's gone.
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  • Big Bad: Cpt. Adel Renard, who turns out to be behind almost every tragic event that occurs in the case and is the true murderer of Cpt. Janus Harvey.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: At the end of every episode, Kay will ask the audience to support the fan-translation of Miles Edgeworth Investigations 2. Later, she even manages to change things so that the characters can speak independently of the text boxes.
  • Colon Cancer: Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Operation: Turnabout
  • Consummate Professional: Cpt. Adel Renard, the security chief. Horrifically subverted later on, when he's revealed to be the killer.
  • Continuity Porn: The authors make it clear that the series is attempting to be in continuity with the Ace Attorney timeline — well, about as close as you can get while considering demon abduction canon.
  • Cunning Like a Fox: Adel Renard, as mentioned under Animal Motifs, has a fox theme, and masterminded just about every tragic event in the story.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Phoenix, as usual, is quite deadpan in his inner monologues.
  • Dead Man's Switch: After it's finally proven he murdered Cpt. Harvey, Cpt. Adel Renard reveals his last card, a Helios-6 bomb he smuggled into the courtroom complete with a dead man's switch set to trigger if he is incapacitated, and demands to be let out of the courtroom lest he detonate the bomb. Subverted however in that Phoenix deduces the bomb as a dud which is proven after Franziska whips the bomb out of Renard's hand, exposing his bluff.
  • Demolitions Expert: Most of the Engineering Company, most notably private November, Lt. Victoria and Cpt. Harvey.
  • Death Is Cheap: In the B-Plot concerning Miles Edgeworth's attempt to return home to America from Japan (made to promote the fan translation of Ace Attorney Investigations Miles Edgeworth 2), Miles is killed by a falling piano. Luckily, due to the efforts of Sissel, his death is averted; however, he is still stuck in the airport.
  • Did Not Die That Way: As it turns out, Captain Harvey was already dead when the bomb exploded. His drink was spiked with medicine that reacts badly with alcohol, causing his heart to give out.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: SSgt. Lou Tenant, at least at first.
  • Everyone Went to School Together: Phoenix and the defendant Mike November were both students in the same university, although they had never met each other at the time.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Lt. Victoria, a demolition expert, wears one on her right eye.
  • Foreshadowing: In Day 1 of the trial, when Franziska is hurling insults at Phoenix Wright after he brings up a suicide angle, the Judge threatens to hold her under contempt of court. Later, he helps Wright and Franziska to get Captain Renard to stay in court and testify by threatening to hold him under contempt of court, allowing Wright to find the evidence needed to convict him of murdering Captain Harvey. And before that during the first investigation day, Maya hiding inside a box in the corridor leading to the crime scene foreshadows the way Renard managed to stay undetected during private November's surprise visit to Harvey.
  • For the Evulz: Renard's core motive; reveling in his ability to screw over other people for no other reason than he can.
  • Foreign Money Is Proof of Guilt: the presence of Areisan currency in Adel Renards office is used to prove the fact that he sold explosives to insurgents in Aresia.
  • Four Is Death: The Helios-6 Incident occured on the Fourth of April, costing the lives of the entire 1st Special Engineering Company with the exception of three: Captain Harvey, Lt. Victoria, and Dr. Siegfried.
  • Goodbye, Cruel World!: Early in the case, Phoenix suggests that maybe Cpt. Janus Harvey took his own life, but the absence of a suicide note leaves him unable to prove his theory. Against all odds, Franziska's team is able to reconstitute a suicide note, leaving her no choice but to accept that the case may not be a murder, but a suicide. However, things get a lot more complicated once Gumshoe interrupts the trial with another suicide note, whose contents are the opposite of the one they found. Ultimately, both notes ended up being fakes, the self-loathing one being written by Dr. Siegfried and the regretless one being written by the actual murderer, Cpt. Renard.
  • Officer and a Gentleman: Or in this case a Lady, Lt. Irene Victoria.
  • Hate Sink: Captain Janus Harvey. Pretty much every description of him and flashback depicting him serves to make you hate him more and more.
  • Herr Doktor: Dr. Jason Siegfried.
  • Ironic Name: Captain Adel Renard, whose first name means "fair or just". This name is ironic, when his crimes are revealed: He sold a dangerous explosives to insurgents in a civil war for the thrills, pushes on Captain Harvey's paranoia so much that he ends up killing his entire company with a bomb to hide his crime, and invokes a legal loophole to escape justice after confessing his crimes in the army to the court, for Phoenix Wright cannot prove he killed Captain Harvey, while Siegfried and Victoria are almost sentenced for his crimes.
  • Jerkass: Cpt. Janus Harvey, so much so that absolutely no one who works under him has ever respected him. He also liked to bully privates, especially Mike.
  • Kicked Upstairs: Right before his demise, Cpt. Janus Harvey was to be promoted. The promotion was offered in exchange for a confession of his involvement in the Helios-6 incident, granting him immunity for his actions at the time.
  • Loophole Abuse: Cpt. Adel Renard invokes this after confessing his role in the Helios-6 incident by explaining the court has no jurisdiction to try him for crimes committed during his service in the Army, nor can Phoenix clearly prove he murdered Cpt. Harvey, allowing Renard to walk away scott free even after confessing while Siegfried and Victoria are sentenced for his crime. Only Franziska convincing the Judge to threaten contempt of court prevents him from pulling a Karma Houdini
  • Meaningful Name: A few characters, as per tradition:
    • Lt. Irene Victoria. Irene means "Peace" and Victoria means "victory", a fitting name for a peacekeeper who helps to clear obstacles with explosives to ensure a bright future.
    • Dr. Jason Siegfried. Jason's first name means "to heal", while his last name means "victory and peace", referring to his position as a doctor for the military peacekeeping regiment. His last name could also refer to his engagement with Lt. Victoria after the events of the story.
    • Captain Janus Harvey. His first name derives from the two-faced Romand god Janus, while his last name refers to Harvey Dent, better known as Batman villain Two-Face. Both his first and last name refers to his two alleged suicide notes, which contrasts greatly in tone. The origin of his first name gets referenced when Dr. Siegfried states that Captain Harvey could have commissioned someone "to immortalize his likeness as if he were some sort of Roman god."
    • Captain Adel Renard. Adel means "Just, fair", fitting for the Chief of Securities, who takes his job very seriously and ensures that the rest of the regiment keep in line, and is referred as a fox by Staff Sergeant Lou Tenant. his first name becomes ironic when his crimes during the civil war is revealed. His last name means fox, an animal often stereotyped to be sly, which Renard most definitely is, when he invokes a legal loophole to escape justice even after confessing his war crimes, by explaining that the court has no jurisdiction to try him for his crimes he did in the army. This gets referenced when Staff Sergeant Lou Tenant refers to Captain Renard as a fox.
  • Medal of Dishonor: The Dove of Fidelity. It's described as a medal you never want to wear, as it is awarded for being among the sole survivors of an attack. Captain Harvey received one. As it turns out, he isn't the only one who won it: Siegfried and Victoria have one too. All three of them are the sole survivors of the Helios-6 incident.
  • The Neidermeyer: Cpt. Janus Harvey, the victim, especially towards Mike November. Turns out Mike is the brother of a soldier who was under his command, and that he tried to put the blame on for the Helios-6 incident.
  • Never My Fault: Backstory and flashbacks make it abundantly clear that Cpt. Janus Harvey is quick to look for a scapegoat to avoid facing past mistakes. It led him to try to pin the Helios-6 incident on Mike's brother, Charlie.
  • Never Speak Ill of the Dead: Averted for Cpt. Janus Harvey: no one is sad that he kicked the bucket. Lt. Victoria makes it clear that she has nothing good to say about him, and Mike November doesn't try to hide that he is glad that this man is gone, including during his testimony for his own trial. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Not Helping Your Case: During his testimony, Mike November keeps making double meaning sentences about his last meeting with Cpt. Janus Harvey, leading Phoenix to beg him mentally to stop digging his own grave.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Captain Adel Renard calls Phoenix Wright as being no different than him, saying they both exploit the weakness of people for their own goals, before throwing them away like carrion. Phoenix, naturally, rebuts him, saying he fights for the truth.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: When Phoenix manages to ruin Franziska's "perfect case" on the first day, she loses it and breaks into this Trope.
  • Punny Name: Several characters, as is tradition.
    • Mike and November are the phrases for the letters M and N in the NATO Phonetic Alphabet. Mike's brother Charlie follows the same trend, representing the letter C.
    • Staff Sergeant Lou Tenant. This is Lampshaded by the Judge, who mistook him for being an actual lieutenant. Sergeant Tenant quips that he has a hard time with such a name.
  • Random Events Plot: The sideplot in the interludes concerning Miles Edgeworth. The characters do have a goal (escape the airport) but the actual story itself is pure madness, as characters from other franchises show up, while time and reality itself gets screwed.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Once Adel's bomb gambit is revealed to be a fake, all the people who suffered from him plus Maya and Phoenix tell him it's officially over for him.
  • Relationship Upgrade: It's only mentioned very briefly, but in a blink-and-you'll-miss-it line during the "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue credits, Lt. Victoria makes a brief comment that she and Dr. Siegfried have become engaged.
  • Retcon: The series fixes a continuity issue created by the team's earlier series Phoenix Wright: Devil's Attorney by setting it in late February 2019 rather than late September as initially stated, with this series taking place in early March shortly after.
  • Retired Monster: Cpt. Janus Harvey is revealed to have helped smuggle explosives to insurgents and killed most of his company in an explosion. He never did any evil deeds afterward, but remained as cruel as ever, harassing and hazing the privates and refusing to admit he did any wrong while trying to pin the blame on Mike's deceased brother, Charlie.
  • Ruritania: The fictional Eastern European country of Aresia was the location of the Helios-6 incident.
  • Scars are Forever: Lt. Victoria wears an eyepatch to cover a wound which resulted in the loss of her right eye.
  • Shout-Out: In addition to the internal shout outs to official Ace Attorney games, there are several to other franchises, memes, and other fan projects including Turnabout Storm and Turnabout Musical.
    • Lordlban has confirmed in a YouTube comment that Captain Janus Harvey's last name is a reference to Harvey Dent from Batman, referring to the duality of his two alleged suicide notes.
    • In Dr. Siegfried's office, on the bookshelf, there are figurines of Megaman, Luigi from Super Mario Bros., Sissel's true form as a cat from Ghost Trick, Professor Layton, and Steve from Minecraft.
    • Special attention is paid towards Siegfried's little pony figurines on the window sill, which are arranged in the form of a court with Rainbow Dash as defendant, prompting Phoenix Wright to state that they are giving him "the strangest case of déjà vu".
    • In Day 2 of the Trial, Phoenix Wright states that he is going to attack Franziska Von Karma's theory "by attacking its weak point." Maya responds, "For massive damage?". This is a reference to the Giant Enemy Crab meme. When Von Karma proceeds to refute Phoenix's argument, Maya states, "It's not very effective, Nick..." referencing the gameplay of Pokémon.
    • The security protocols of Captain Renard's alarm console is a reference to the ??? PROFIT!!!! meme.
    • When Maya spots a briefcase in Captain Renard's office, she states on seeing what it has eaten, referencing the living Luggage from Discworld.
    • When Phoenix Wright uses the magatama to find out about Lt. Victoria's involvement in the Helios-6 Incident, the interrogation is named Lt. Victoria's Secret, possibly a reference to the lingerie brand Victoria's Secret.
    • As the situation in the airport Miles Edgeworth is stuck in becomes more and more absurd, Phoenix Wright and Maya show up, prompting an exasperated Edgeworth to say, "Et tu, Wright and Miss Fey?"
    • Staff Sergeant Tenant refers to Dr. Siegfried as Bones. Later, when talking with Wright before the third day of the trial, he says, "Is little boy blue here a bad enough dude to save November?"
    • During his testimony, Captain Renard mentions a Captain Bear of Signals, Captain Wilco of CBRN, and a Captain Kurtz of Special Forces.
    • Phoenix Wright quotes from T.S. Eliot when he states that Captain Harvey "did not go out with a bang, but a whimper", which happens to be a line from The Hollow Men.
    • This line, complete with music when Phoenix can't find Maya:
    • Among the things in Lt. Victoria's office are some TNT Crates.
  • Spanner in the Works: Gumshoe tampered unintentionally with the crime scene by keeping in his pocket a box he found during the investigation. As it is locked, and since he fears Franziska's whip, he decided to not share his blunder with the prosecution until he manages to open it. A Genre Savvy player will expect Gumshoe to interrupt the trial and save Phoenix with a key piece of evidence, but it is hilariously subverted as Franziska's team managed to recover the content of a suicide note that she disclosed in trial, thus grudgingly saving the defense team, right before Gumshoe barges in with the content of the box. Gumshoe is a little disappointed when the court tells him that they are already aware of the suicide letter... until it becomes clear that it is another, different suicide letter he has in his position.
  • Suicide Note: Franziska uses the lack of one to argue against Phoenix's theory that Cpt. Harvey's death was self-inflicted. Later on, they find two letters that could be interpreted as suicide notes-both of which are forgeries.
  • Take That!: Edgeworth's sideplot basically serves as one to Capcom not translating Ace Attorney Investigations Miles Edgeworth 2 to English for Western fans.
  • The Tag: "Meanwhile, in a certain Japanese airport..."
  • This Is Gonna Suck: When Phoenix learns that Franziska is in charge of prosecuting the case, he immediately expects a much harder time in court... and lots of pain.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Mike always keeps with him the last letter his brother Charlie sent him before his death.
  • Voice of the Legion: Used to obscure the identity of the second party speaking to Cpt. Harvey in the opening, by having the voice of every possible suspect speaking simultaneously.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Adel Renard freaks out when he realizes he's been cornered, at first pulling out a Helios-6 Dead Man's Switch and threatening to take the whole courtroom with him, then when it's revealed the bomb's a dud, hallucinates the moves on a chessboard forcing him into checkmate before fainting.
  • You Monster!: Phoenix and Lt. Victoria's reaction when Adel Renard reveals his involvement in the Helios-6 Incident