Aster with "Destiny HERO - Plasma".
Yu-Gi-Oh! GX Episode 53: "Back to Duel"
|Video game debut|
Aster Phoenix, known as Edo Phoenix in the Japanese version, and commonly romanized as Ed Phoenix, is a child prodigy who makes his first appearance in the second season of Yu-Gi-Oh! GX. An intelligent vigilante, he is considered an anti-hero to Jaden. Although his unorthodox and illegal methods of attaining justice made him practically an enemy to Jaden, he later joins Jaden's side after realizing that he was being manipulated by the Light of Destruction, and later becomes a good friend of Jaden. He's also a pro-athlete, and excels at skiing, skydiving, skysurfing, and surfing. While no mention of it is made in the English dub, the Japanese version further indicates that he has a Ph.D. in two undisclosed subjects. Aster is one of the only Duelists who has shown the ability to defeat Jaden.
Aster's character design was overseen by Kenichi Hara. His usual outfit consists of silver formal wear with button-up sleeves, a black shirt underneath with matching shoes, and a loosely-fitting necktie. His grey hair is sectioned in two layers, his bangs forming one layer and the rest the other. His blue eyes are positioned between the layers closest to his face. He carries an Academy-issued Duel Disk on his left arm.
In the dub, Aster's speech is riddled with slang such as "dude" and "rockin". However, he is also very arrogant. His original series counterpart replaces certain Japanese words with anglicisms, the most common being his substitutions of numbers for their English equivalents, and replacing "bochi" 「墓地」 with its English equivalent, "cemetery", and "kouka" 「効果」 with "effect". In addition, he yells "Come on!" when Summoning his monsters in the Japanese version.
His name is meant to be a pun in Japanese, as phoenixes were commonly depicted in art during the Edo period of Japan. His English given name means "star", or "silver star".
Aster is a professional Duelist whose belief in destiny draws him into confrontations with the most skilled of opponents. He first meets Jaden at Duel Academy at the beginning of the second year, enrolling as a new student. At that time, he opened several random packs of cards in order to quickly build a Deck to duel Jaden. As his manager, Sartorius predicted, he throws the duel. In the Japanese version, it is later revealed that Aster would have won the Duel but looses the duel on purpose due to Sartorius's orders to test Jaden. Aster then goes on to defeat Zane Truesdale in the Duel Pro League using his own "Elemental Hero" monsters.
Challenging Jaden to another Duel, a battle between "Heroes" erupts as the two mirror each other with their respective "Elemental Hero" monsters. Although Jaden manages to remove his opponent's "Elemental Hero Shining Phoenix Enforcer" from the field, Aster unleashes the true monsters of his Deck, the Destiny HERO cards (also known as the D-Series, and abbreviated as "Ｄ－ＨＥＲＯ" in the Japanese version).Aster reveals that he wishes to become the greatest Duelist in order to rid the world of crime, as his father who was a card designer for Industrial Illusions was murdered (kidnapped in the English version) when he was young, and a card was stolen from him, known only as "The Ultimate D-Card". Aster defeats Jaden in the Duel. Unbeknownst to Aster, Sartorius snuck a portion of his spiritual energy into his Deck prior to the Duel in order to brainwash Jaden to his side at his defeat, but ended up temporarily blinding him to his cards instead due to the boy's power to defy his prediction.
At this point it's clear that Aster is well-mannered (much more so in the Japanese version) with good intentions, but can often be blinded to the reality of a given situation due to his stubborn attitude and pessimistic outlook. He pursues his goals despite risks and overwhelming odds, and feels that the burden of avenging his father and reclaiming the "Destiny Hero" stolen from him is one that he must shoulder alone. Because his father was taken from him while he was still young, he has a dependency on father figures, such as Sartorius, or his legal guardian, The D. This has, in some instances, proven to be a weakness of Aster's, as the two men have been known to exploit him with mere words. Since his father's disappearance, Aster has also held a fear of the state of his "time," afraid that he has not truly advanced anywhere as a person following the life-changing event. As such, the trust he places in his "Destiny Heroes" is symbolic of his desire to control his own future.
After a subsequent conversation with the converted Chazz Princeton, and a third Duel with Jaden, in which he is defeated, Aster begins to question whether or not Sartorius is in fact using him for his own gain, as he had no knowledge of the Society of Light. Later conquering Sarina in a tag Duel with Jaden, he learned of a "Hero" card shown to Sartorius years prior that made him start acting with evil intentions. Aster believes that it is the "Destiny Hero" stolen from his father, and his suspicions are later confirmed, as the Ultimate D-Card surfaces as a carrier of The Light of Destruction that caused both Sartorius and The D to develop split personalities, and the former to plan world destruction.
Aster decides to participate in the Genex Tournament with the goal of finding his father's assailant and Ultimate-D, but does not concern himself with the material rewards of the competition as seen when he gives Tyranno Hassleberry a handful of medals without so much as a thought. He later warns Jaden of dueling X, a professional duelist who duels by reducing the amount of cards in his opponents deck to zero instead of there life points, ultimately Jaden turns the tables on X by reducing X's own deck to zero and wins the duel which Aster leaves shortly after.
In episode 98, Aster discovers The D is the culprit behind his father's disappearance, and Duels him aboard his yacht. The D tells him that he targeted his father because he was certain that obtaining the Ultimate D-Card would make him a successful Duelist in the unforgiving Pro League. The night of the murder, The D broke into the Phoenix household, but was caught by Aster's father. The corrupted Ultimate-D, sensing the evil in his heart, overpowered him and had him dispose of its creator. After the incident, The D took the role of Aster's legal guardian to avoid suspicion. This confession comes as a shock to the boy, who vows to take his former mentor down even at the cost of his own life. He is, however, faced with the very card that he sought to recover: "Destiny Hero - Plasma".
Despite being pushed into a corner by The D's formidable skills, Aster draws "Destiny HERO - Dark Angel", a card specifically designed to combat "Plasma", which was left to him by his father. Finally understanding its purpose, the Duelist turns the tables on The D, but not before his opponent reveals one last terrifying fact: the souls of his victims remain trapped within Plasma’s body. Aster's father emerges from the beast's wing and begs his son to pursue the Light of Destruction's true avatar, Sartorius, as the entity that dwells within Plasma is no more than a "husk." Winning the Duel, his father's spirit at rest, Aster escapes via helicopter with the purified Ultimate D-Card, while The D is consumed by the flames of the resulting explosion.
In episode 100, Aster breaks into Obelisk Blue and corners Sartorius in the Society of Light's private Duel field. As a child, he promised his friend that he would save him from his destiny of becoming a destroyer, but he was not certain how he would do so when the time came. He considers giving up the key to the laser satellite that was handed to him by Sartorius’s good personality, but Jaden intervenes and tells him its true purpose. Recognizing the present Sartorius is The Light of Destruction posing as his lost companion, Aster wagers the key in a Duel. He soon finds fate within the Duel isn't under his control as usual, as Sartorius's Arcana Force monsters stop their own rotations to put Aster in a difficult situations. Eventually, the good-hearted Sartorius appears before him, and the two offer one another support. Aster, aided by the spirit of the good Satorius tells him that he can change his fate. They utilize their destiny-surpassing friendship and make an incredible counter attack by summoning Destiny HERO - Plasma and attacking the possessed Sartorius directly twice, which would have won Aster the Duel if the former had not intervened. Pushed into a corner, The Light of Destruction uses its last cards to bring forth Arcana Force EX - The Light Ruler. The Light Ruler engulfs the field in light and destroys Plasma. Aster is then kidnapped by Sartorius still possessed by The Light of Destruction, who ransoms him in return for Jaden's remaining key. This fails, and Aster is freed shortly.
At the beginning of the third year, Aster stops by Duel Academy to see Jesse Anderson's Crystal Beast monsters. In the past, after winning a tournament sponsored by Industrial Illusions, Aster converses with Maximillion Pegasus himself, who tells him that Aster is one of the top five duelist hes ever seen, the others before him being Yugi, Kaiba, and Joey. When Aster ask who the fifth his Pegasus tells him it is Jesse Anderson, a young duelist who while participating a European competition was chosen by the Crystal Beast Pegasus then goes on to explain that he awarded Jesse the cards as they had chosen him.
Along with Dr. Eisenstein, Aster makes contact with Jaden and company, telling them that the "Rainbow Dragon" card is needed in order to transport Duel Academy back to its original place. After Duel Academy returns he and Zane find Jaden and the others trying to open the fourth dimension to search for Jesse, who is stuck in the alternate dimension. However, they get too close and are sucked into the dimension as well. He and Zane are separated from the others and travel on their own. They re-unite with Syrus (who is in danger at that time), Zane Summons his "Cyber End Dragon" and save Syrus but they are forced to split up again. After Jaden's descent into darkness, they work against The Supreme King by defeating the Supreme King's minions and buying Axel Brodie time to confront the king himself. When Adrian Gecko teleports him and the others to another alternate dimension, he Duels Adrian after seeing him cruelly treat Echo. Adrian, even after being knocked down by Aster's monsters, uses Echo as a live sacrifice and extracts her soul as tribute for Exodius, which he then uses later to release Exodia. Aster decides to protect his friends and slows down Exodia with Destiny HERO - Plasma while he shields everyone from the blast. Aster orders Zane to get to everyone out off the cave, then Exodia launches an attack which causes a huge explosion. He is later seen revived along with everyone else who perished in the Duel Spirit world in the alternate dimension.
Doctor Crowler arranges for Chazz Princeton to train under Aster as an apprentice for the Pro League. Despite being an excellent assistant, Chazz loses the Final D-Card (later revealed to be "Destiny End Dragoon") guarded by Aster, and thus Aster is forced to retire. However, during a Duel with Chazz to determine which of them retires, it is revealed that Aster's manager Mike stole the card, and Aster is thus allowed to remain in the league. He ultimatey loses the Duel to Chazz though and promises he'll defeat him in return one day.
Blister describes to Yusei (English dub only) how he was offered a contract from KaibaCorp to go into Professional Dueling. The deal would have given him chances to Duel with Jack Atlas, Aster Phoenix and Truesdale (It is not stated if this meant Zane Truesdale or Syrus Truesdale).
Aster plays a "Hero" Deck. In the anime, he plays an "Elemental Hero" Deck, which he would later use in combination with his "Destiny Heroes". He would eventually phase out the former series entirely.