Role in the StoryEdit
A mysterious nobleman living in luxury, The Count approaches and befriends Albert in Luna as the first step in his plan of revenge against the people who once betrayed him. The Count's previous identity was Edmond Dantès, a sailor who worked for the Morrel family's shipping company. Edmond fell in love with Mercedes Herrera and married her, until he was framed and imprisoned in the Château d'If on false charges, and it was there that he met Gankutsuou (known as The Ruler of the Cave in Animax's English adaptation). In exchange for the strength and means to gain revenge, he allowed the cold-blooded demon to possess him. Because of Gankutsuou, he is afflicted with an odd condition which causes his body to be crystalline, revealing his bones and internal organs.
After years of Machiavellian scheming that ruins the lives of his three targets and their families, the Count finally loses control of Gankutsuou, and is about to leave without completing his vengeance. However, at the spurs of Albert, who shows him that his so-called self-made destiny is just under the control of the demon, the contract is somehow revoked and the demon flees Edmond's body. Without his influence, however, the Count succumbs to the wound he suffered in the duel with Franz, and the shard of sword lodged in his heart leads him to bleed to death. His last desire was for Albert and Haidee to remember him as Edmond rather than Gankutsuou, and he, along with Mondego, are buried under the collapsing roof of his artificial sky.
Before his transformation, Edmond was merciful and kind towards other people, Baron Danglars being a prime example when he was caught embezzling. His naive nature made it difficult for him to question the intentions of others, ultimately making him fall for traps set by those who would betray his trust.
The Count is extremely charismatic, instantly charming Albert and making a quickly making a star of himself in Parisian society. He also has the loyalty and devotion of Baptiste, Bertuccio, Ali, and Haydee, all of whom express their great admiration for him on many occasions.
While initially coming off as a gentlemanly sort of fellow who has good intentions when Edmond was the Count of Monte Cristo, this was only to keep up appearances, especially to Albert, who he was merely using as a tool to set up more of his revenge scheme. In truth, the Count was a manipulative sociopath who cared very little about those around him, be they ally or enemy. Incredibly vengeful, his mind is fixated on vengeance only, with everyone around him being mere pawns to be used to get that revenge. It is heavily implied (and then eventually revealed) that he was also emotionally manipulative to Haydee, purposefully bringing her to the opera house knowing that she would see General Morcerf, which in turn would lead to her eventual sabotage of the general's presidential campaign, just as the Count intended. When her purpose was served, she was simply cast aside like she was nothing at all.
However, he is also shown to be concerned for those around him. Even after Helois Villefort ceases to be of use to him, he continues to keep her and Edouard with him, as in her state of madness she is unable to care for herself. (This may be a nod to his character in the novel, where her and her son's death are the first events to cause Edmond remorse, although he ultimately pushes on.) Likewise, he treats Haydee as a daughter, and although it can be argued it was so she would not abandon him until he could use her against Morcerf, his many dotings indicate genuine affection. Haydee herself mentions that Gankutsuou consumed him over time, and his affection for her seems to wax and wane with its influence upon him. At times the Count struggles to hold off its power, during which he is more like the past Edmond Dantes, often showing regret, sadness, and loneliness. Other times he embraces it, and becomes more demonic in appearance and nature.
Noirtier de Villefort informs Franz that Gankutsuou is slowly changing the Count's body to crystal, trying to remove all emotions. In order to savour his revenge, the Count resists this change over his heart.
Ultimately, Edmond escapes Gankutsuou's influence, and they split into two beings once more, revealing the discord between the joined personalities that made up the Count.
Visually, the Count resembles both Kambein from the Gonzo series Samurai 7 as well as Dracula.
- It is notable that the Count of Monte Cristo isn't the protagonist of this adaptation like he was in the original story. This role goes to Albert de Morcerf instead. Rather, the Count is the main villain of the series.
- In the original book, the Count collected a large fortune that was discussed to him by a fellow prisoner. This fortune was located in Monte Cristo, hence his title. However, no explanation was ever given for why he chose the name "The Count of Monte Cristo" in this adaptation. In the accompanying manga penned by the series creator, however, it is explained as a small planetoid made of gold in the East System that is used by the clergy - specifically the Cardinals - as a secret source of wealth. Gankutsuou takes Edmond Dantes there and declares it 'more than could be spent in a lifetime'. This is also where he aquires his ship, the 'Espada' or 'Sparta', depending on translation.
- The manga also explains the Count's appearance, affirming that his body was reformed after his fusion with Gankutsuou. His blue skin is a result of this, so that his body would not require air - a necessary part of their escape from Chateau D'If. It is also implied that demon and Edmond have separate consciousness that occasionally blend into one.
- What Gankutsuou gains from Edmond's revenge is unclear, though in the manga it suggests dissatisfaction with Edmond's desire to live in the past, instead wishing he'd use the wealth it'd given him to live in the moment. Edmond's thirst for revenge and his remaining humanity is hinted to be what keeps him from joining fully with the demon, leading to his apparent 'illness'.