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... Tee hee. You haven't changed a bit... Mia Fey.
~ Dahlia's sweeter side.
Do. You. Think. You've. Won? Well!? Do you, Mia Fey? Heh. Heh. Heh. Heheh... That's. Just. Fine!
~ Dahlia's darker side.
You're as foolishly optimistic as ever, aren't you... my darling Feenie? Do you want to know the truth? Ever since we met... I've despised you. Your sniveling naïveté and your pathetic faith in other people.
~ Dahlia revealing her true nature.
Dahlia Hawthorne is the main antagonist of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Trials and Tribulations and the second season of the anime series. She is a selfish, heartless, sociopathic serial killer who uses her sweet demeanor and appearance to manipulate people, especially men.
In the Japanese version of the anime adaptation, she was voiced by Rina Sato, who also voiced Baby 5 from One Piece. In the English version of the anime, she was voiced by Dani Chambers.
Born to Morgan Fey, who was to become the head of the Fey Clan, Dahlia and her twin sister, Iris, were taken by their greedy father, who divorced Morgan after her younger sister, Misty, became the head instead. He eventually remarried, but the new wife already had a daughter of her own, Valerie. Seeing her own twin as a nuisance, Dahlia convinced him to leave Iris at a channeling dojo called Hazakura Temple. At the age of 14, Dahlia and Valerie conspired to steal a 2 million dollar jewel from their father with the aid of Terry Fawles through a phony kidnapping: Terry was to be the "culprit" responsible for abducting Dahlia, and Valerie, who had been promoted to detective, was to make the exchange. After Fawles had the jewel, she would run away with him. But when the time came Dahlia threw herself into the Eagle River (with the diamond) in an attempt to cut Terry out of the deal. Her body was never found, and Fawles was tried and convicted for her murder. Dahlia actually washed up on the river bank at Hazakura, where her sister discovered her and nursed her back to health.
5 years later, Terry Fawles escaped from a band wagon and phoned Valerie to meet him at Dusky Bridge. Because he had spent 5 years in jail, he had forgotten what Valerie looked like, so he instructed her to wear a white scarf. Dahlia, hearing what Valerie intended to do, committed her first murder by stabbing her step-sister in the back and placed the body in the trunk of a car that was stolen by the fugitive Fawles. During the trial, Dahlia appeared under the alias "Melissa Foster" testifying against Terry Fawles. Before attorneys Mia Fey and Diego Armando could bring her to justice, Terry Fawles poisoned himself due to a promise he and Dahlia made: if neither one could trust the other, then they had to drink the poison in the bottle. As a result, Terry Fawles died, and Dahlia Hawthorne walked out of the court a free woman.
Six months later, Dahlia met with Diego and poisoned his coffee with the same poison that had killed Terry. She handed the poison vial, which was actually a pendant she wore as a necklace, off to Phoenix Wright so that she wouldn't be caught with it. She intended to kill him later and get it back, but Iris begged her to spare his life, promising to get the necklace back herself. Dahlia waited eight months for Iris to do so, but when she failed, took matters into her own hands and tried to kill Phoenix herself. On April 9, Dahlia stole Phoenix's beloved cold medicine (Coldkiller X) and poisoned it so she could kill him. However, when she discovered her ex-boyfriend, Doug Swallow, talking to Phoenix about her, she panicked and decided to kill Swallow instead and frame Phoenix for the murder by planting the poisoned cold medicine in the victim's hand. At the trial, however, she was caught and exposed by Mia Fey, who was out to avenge Diego Armando. Before she received her sentence, Dahlia promised Mia that it was not over between them.
Bridge to the Turnabout
5 years later, Dahlia was executed by hanging, but not before her mother, Morgan, who had been imprisoned due to her involvement in an earlier murder, informed her about a plan to kill Maya Fey, Mia's younger sister, by having Morgan's youngest daughter, Pearl Fey, channel Dahlia's spirit, so that Pearl could become the next master of the Fey Clan. Dahlia only agreed to go along with the plan because she wanted to have her revenge against Mia, who had been killed 2 years earlier. After 5 years in a coma, Armando woke up and heard about Mia's death by Redd White, but blamed it on Phoenix Wright for letting her down. He changed his name to Godot and became a prosecutor to follow Wright and defeat him in court. However, he heard about Morgan's plan and called both Iris and Maya's mother, Misty Fey (who was under the alias of "Elise Deauxnim"), to channel Dahlia before she could be called through Pearl. Misty channeled her according to plan, but when she tried to kill Maya, Godot saved her by killing Misty on the spot with her own sword. Afterwards, Maya was told by Mia, who Maya had channeled, to lock herself in the nearby temple and channel Dahlia into her own body. Dahlia later posed as Iris and tricked Wright in court to believe Maya was dead, not knowing the truth herself. However, Wright figured out the truth and, after much effort, exposed Dahlia's lies. Finally, when Dahlia said she couldn't be punished because she was already dead, Mia (who was being channeled through Pearl) said she already received her punishment by being herself, a "miserable, pathetic, weak creature who can never win at anything." She then immediately left Maya's body and, according to Godot, returned to the Hell she came from.
Dahlia has two breakdowns, each occurring in a different case. In Turnabout Memories, she begins pronouncing Mia's name in anger, then turning her head to the camera, her eyes glowing in wrath while the butterflies that usually surround her burst into flames.
In Bridge to the Turnabout, when Phoenix finally corners her and Mia (while being channeled by Pearl) verbally breaks her, she slams her head on the stand while holding it with her hands. She then screams in agony while her spirit leaves Maya's body, her hair flowing in every direction like fire and its eyes glowing evilly. She then disappears in a burst of blue flames in the shape of a Magatama while images of her crimes flash behind her.
Initially, Dahlia Hawthorne appeared to be a sweet, graceful, demonstrative, angelic young woman, easily gaining the attention and affection of any man she came across. This, however, was merely a façade. In reality, she was as cold, cruel, arrogant, and manipulative as they came, not caring for anyone or anything but herself, all of which were the characteristics of a true, evil sociopath. She used her "sweet and innocent" persona to gain the loyalty of others, namely a college student named Phoenix Wright and a tutor named Terry Fawles, and bend them to her will, with the latter even being willing to commit suicide for her, and did so while on the witness stand.
Even though she was eventually found guilty and executed for her second murder (that of her ex-boyfriend, Doug Swallow), not even death could hold back her evil. Dahlia's spirit later returned to torment Phoenix and her relatives in the Fey clan in a scheme that resulted in the murder of the mother of her nemesis, Mia Fey, and endangered the life of Mia's sister, Maya. Fortunately, both Phoenix and Mia defeated her again with a breaking speech, after which she broke down, and left Maya's body, whereupon it was agreed that she would never be channeled again.
Through flashbacks, it was revealed that Dahlia was the first villain ever defeated by Mia.
Dahlia is the first female villain to be the main antagonist of an Ace Attorney game. She would later be followed by Queen Ga'ran Sigatar Khura'in.
"Dahlia" and "Iris" are both flower names. However, it may be a reference to the murder novel "The Black Dahlia". Also, "Dahlia" sounds much similar to the term "the liar".
"Hawthorne" may be a corruption of "has thorns".
"Miyanagi" (美柳) is a name that usually evokes tranquility. "Chinami" (ちなみ) may come from the phrase "chi mo namida mo nai" ("without blood or tears"), basically meaning "heartless".
Unlike many Villainous Breakdowns presented in the previous installments in the series, that were all hilarious and/or exaggrated in their own ways, both the two breakdowns of Dahlia is not only 100% serious but also very terrifying.
Along with Kristoph Gavin, Quercus Alba, and Simon Keyes, Dahlia is one of the few Ace Attorney villains to be behind the events of the entire game and the main villain of the entire story.
WatchMojo.com listed Dahlia Hawthorne as #10 on their Top 10 "Female Video Game Villains" list.
Dahlia is the shortest villain in the entire Ace Attorney series, being only 155 cm (5'1") tall.
In a game series where most of the final culprits are the primary antagonist in their respective games (except Matt Engarde, who had almost no relations to any of the previous cases in the second game except its final case), Dahlia was a special case as the main villain of the third game, since she was not the final culprit of the third game, but she had a heavy role within it.
In fact, although Godot/Diego Armando was revealed to be the final culprit of the third game, Dahila is the overall main antagonist (as well as a catalyst) in the game even though her defeat was before Godot's defeat, since she once possessed Misty Fey in order to kill once again, and Godot's murder on Misty had interfered with her plan. What was more, Dahlia was the main cause to make Armando into Godot, who is just antagonistic rather than villainous.
The only other Ace Attorney villain with a similar role like Dahlia was Bansai Ichiyanagi from Miles Edgeworth: Ace Attorney Investigations 2. Although he was not the final boss of the game, Bansai could be considered as the true catalyst and/or even the Bigger Bad of the Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth - Prosecutor's Path who drove its main and final antagonist, Sōta Sarushiro, into villainy.