An OEL Manga
webcomic created by David Herbert
and Tatiana Lepikhina, Domain Tnemrot
, or just Tnemrot
, is the story of a future (year not identified) where slaves are given special bands that allow them to become super powered, while losing all free movement to their masters, who control them remotely, as in a video game. The gladiator-style battles are set in the titular stadium.
The story focuses on Dae, a former free man but now a slave, and his owner Mia, an 8-year-old girl who enters him in the gladiator games while not fully understanding the consequences of doing so. While preparing for the fight, Mia forgets to attach a special collar that would give her full control of Dae, allowing him free movement while in the ring. During his first fight, Dae's opponent, a girl named Angel, asks him to kill her, but Dae manages to free her without anyone realising what he has done. Angel becomes Mia's pet as well, but with a constant fear that her old master will find out she's still alive and come after her.
The comic features decompressed storytelling
but is very action based, with artwork inspired by Bleach
. It updates every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. You can read it here
This webcomic provides examples of:
- Abusive Parents - Chapter five's flashbacks show this was how Dae lived growing up.
- All There in the Manual - The About and FAQ sections provide info on the cast and the back story of the comic.
- Always Save the Girl: The reason Dae and Angel haven't escaped already is because they want to take Mia with them and ensure no one will chase after her or them. Their current plan involves killing her father to ensure this.
- Berserk Button - Watch out when Dae's gets hit.
- It is not in your best interest to harm Mia in front of Angel or Dae.
- Bread and Circuses - The games are meant to distract people from the crippling poverty the slaves would be enduring if they were free.
- Bungled Suicide: Ref/Jason attempted to kill himself after his girlfriend left him for missing their wedding because of his obsessive work habits at the Arena.
- Cast from Lifespan: The collars that allow fighters their superhuman abilities are powered by a near limitless source of energy... Which causes cancer from prolonged use and is threatening to kill Angel due to her having worn one her whole life.
- Cry into Chest - The end of Chapter Four
- Dark and Troubled Past. Dae spent his entire childhood in The Resistance being beaten and battered by his own parents, other adults and fellow children to be allowed food and under the idea that is would make him stronger. He eventually watches almost everyone he knows die when the Resistance is wiped out.
- Angel is effectively seen by society as cattle, being breed, born and raised for the express purpose of fighting to the death in the arena. By the time of the story, she is heavily suicidal because of this and the treatment she receives from Morris.
- Deadly Game
- Deadpan Snarker - Dae has exhibited this once or twice.
- Decompressed Comic - According to Herbert, his original script for chapter 1 was 10 pages shorter. Also, all the pages tend to have each person's actions between panels where they're speaking.
- The Door Slams You: Morris is holding a collar up, threatening Angel with it, when suddenly Ref slams the door open into Morris, sending him flying. The next panel shows a tiny spray of blood covering the wall in the corner and Morris' soul raising out of his body.
- Driven to Suicide: Angel was suicidal by the start of the story and asked for Dae to kill her during their fight... She gets better.
- First Episode Spoiler - Angel becomes one of the main characters.
- Friendless Background - Dae was a homeless scavenger, Mia is shunned by her father and Angel was a slave.
- Genius Ditz - Tempest. Dear GOD, Tempest.
- Gladiator Games
- I'm Taking Her Home with Me!: Dae's current plans include and revolve around finding a way to take Mia with them and out of her borderline abusive home.
- Involuntary Battle to the Death - None of the gladiators has the free will to say no to the matches.
- La Résistance - Part of Dae's back story is he belonged to one that dissolved after a mass-scale attack.
- Lonely Rich Kid - Mia.
- Morality Pet: Mia for Dae and Angel.
- Never Learnt To Read: The Upper class of society never bother to learn to read. Dae mocks the fact they create giant libraries and book collections despite the fact they can't make sense of anything in them.
- Non-Indicative First Episode - The first few pages make it look like it's about Dae surviving in an apocalyptic wasteland Twenty Minutes into the Future. Then he's captured and we see it's Pokémon with real people.
- Parental Neglect - The only time we see Mia and her father interact, he gives Dae a glare and walks off while she's talking to him. He has yet to say a word on panel.
- Parental Substitute - Angel and Dae have become this for Mia. Their current plans revolve around getting her safely away from her family and will kill her father to do so.
- Punny Name - Dae Shyn.
- Rape as Backstory - While implied for Angel, it is instead averted with Word of God confirming it never happened between Angel and Morris. He is in fact a eunuch
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money! - In chapter 2, Angel breaks a lot of Tnemrot's regulations while rescuing Dae, but it causes the crowd to spend so much that the ref actually praises them.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right - Angel in chapter 2.
- Sdrawkcab Name - The title.
- Suicide Is Painless - Angel wanted Dae to kill her the first time they met.
- Training from Hell - Dae grew up with a trainer who believed that offering food to starving children, who the man was training, was a sign of weakness. Also, his parents starved him in an attempt to get him to read, or beat him bloody and insulted him while teaching him to fight. At that point, he was younger than Mia.
- Troubled Production - The comic took a year and a half to get off the ground, and Tatiana wasn't the first artist on the project.
- Twenty Minutes into the Future - It's stated how far into the future this place is, but a lot of things look very modern.
- The Un Favourite - Mia to her father.
- Word of God - In the comments section of each page, Herbert sometimes gives us info on the comic. It's also the only way we know the people attacking Dae were his biological parents.
- He also constantly uses it to constantly lampshade or poke fun at his own story, such as Morris.
'I didn’t think he was evil enough, so I added in a little sexism.'
- Or the fact that injuries heal so quickly off screen.
'They’ve got some of the sciency magic salve in the car.'
'Hooray for magical science. Or scientific magic. In any case, he’s all better now.'
- Would Hit a Girl: Morris will sucker punch children.
- Zettai Ryouiki - June.