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Manga / Okane ga Nai

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Okane ga Nai (No Money!) is a yaoi manga series created by Hitoyo Shinozaki and illustrated by Tohru Kousaka. Originally a series of Light Novels, the manga ran in the josei magazine Comic Magazine LYNX from 2002 to 2014.

Ayase, an 18-year-old student, is overly naïve and trusting; as the story opens, he is being sold at auction by his unscrupulous cousin to pay off gambling debts. He's eventually bought by Kanou, a towering, ruthless loan shark who is doing so to repay Ayase for a past kindness...which Ayase, unfortunately, has no memory of. Although Kanou is clearly in love, he has issues expressing his feelings; worse, neither is willing to admit an attraction to men, and Kanou further insists that Ayase is the only man he's attracted to. In an attempt to keep Ayase around, Kanou claims that the amount he paid for Ayase amounts to a debt he's willing to null if Ayase remembers how they met. Until then, Ayase can repay Kanou by having sex with him: he gets 500,000 yen every time they do the deed to pay off the 120 million yen debt.note 

The traditional Seme and Uke dynamic featured is subverted by the fact that Kanou is head over heels for Ayase, while Ayase is unsure of how he feels for Kanou and averse to being forced into a homosexual relationship, occasionally giving him the upper hand. The relationship drama is also helped along by a colourful cast of secondary characters, including Toranosuke Gion, an upbeat and clever Mr. Fixit who often helps Kanou in his schemes, Kaoruko Someya, a well-meaning but abrasive transvestite who acts as the couple's counselor, and the Kuba twins, Kanou's sidekicks and battle butlers.

It should be noted that this series is very graphic in its depictions of sex and violence. Both are played for laughs as well as angst.

Unusually for a yaoi series, the manga is long-running, still going on at 16 volumes. Also, the writer is male, despite the yaoi genre as a whole being created by women for women. It often translates to a certain harshness in the protagonists' relationship that is usually not as present in other yaoi series.

A 4-episode OVA has been made, as well as multiple drama CDs.

There is a character sheet available for the character-specific tropes.

Okane ga Nai shows examples of:

  • Art Shift: Sometimes used in comedic situations.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: As of a latter volume, Homare, unlike Kanou, told Ayase loud and clear that he loves him just as deeply as Kanou does. And that he also accepts that there's hardly a chance for him to ever get Ayase to feel for him that way.
  • Attempted Rape: Ayase seems to attract these. Culprits include Iida and Tokikawa.
  • Beast and Beauty: The manga and anime seem to be a very twisted, gender-changed, yaoi-filled version of this story.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Kanou's obsession with Ayase comes from the time that Ayase cheered him up when he was in an Heroic BSoD state, long before they came into each other's lives.
  • Bridal Carry: Ayase is sometimes carried like this by Kanou.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Kanou thinks he's made it obvious he loves Ayase but has never actually said it out loud.
  • Cast Full of Pretty Boys: An extreme case. There are no women in the entire cast save for Ayase's late mother and his aunt who gets only one appearance. And the politician's daughter used as a bargaining chip.
  • Chains of Love: There is a lot of artwork in which Ayase is in chains.
    • Hilariously parodied in the latest volume with Yamato trying to shackle Ayase to himself after he freed him from the same chains that were tying him to Kanou.
  • Dude, She's Like in a Coma: Subverted at the beginning of both the manga and the anime: Kanou almost kisses Ayase while unconscious and drugged. He then opts for the default option.
  • The Farmer and the Viper: Who knew that being kind to a stranger four years before would garner Ayase virtual house arrest by Kanou?
  • For the Lulz: Quite a few of Kanou's associates, from his driver to his own father figures, enjoy making passes at Ayase just to piss Kanou off.
  • A Glass in the Hand: Kanou crushes a highball glass after pouring its contents over a jerk's head.
  • Heroic BSoD: Many times for Kanou when Ayase misinterprets his displays of affection.
    • Ayase gets his fair share when he thinks he's making things worse for Kanou.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: The group consists of Kanou's late father, Someya's father, and Takanohashi's father, as implied through several minor characters. Takanohashi himself even corrects Ayase when the latter assumes that Kanou was raised by two fathers by saying that it's more like Someya Sr. was the 'mother' between the two of them, though both men had their own families already.
    • Averted in regards to the aforementioned men's three sons. All three were business partners (of the lawyer-loan shark-yakuza variety) and it's vaguely implied that they wish this partnership would carry on to their sons. However, it's worth noting that besides sexuality technically not allowing all three of their sons to fall into this trope, it's shown that Someya and Yamato carry quite a bit of an inferiority complex towards Kanou that keep all three of them from getting as close as their fathers were.
  • Huge Guy Tiny Guy: Kanou is much taller and stockier than the frail-looking Ayase.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: The whole stitch about Homare, who has accepted long ago that he can't compete with Kanou for Ayase's love.
  • I'm a Man; I Can't Help It: Kanou is pretty bad at resisting Ayase's allure even in situations where he knows Ayase wouldn't appreciate such attention.
  • If I Can't Have You…: To Kanou, Ayase is his possession and anyone trying to take Ayase away from him shall feel his wrath. And that's never pretty. This is basically the entire premise of the story.
  • If It's You, It's Okay: Neither Kanou nor Ayase were attracted to males before hooking up. Kanou isn't really attracted to anyone but Ayase and Kanou is still the only guy that Ayase feels attracted to.
  • Indentured Servitude: Ayase is auctioned off by his cousin to repay family debts and is purchased by a rich yakuza named Kanou. Because Kanou is in love with Ayase, he agrees to change the terms of their relationship from slavery to indentured servitude, giving Ayase a wage and allowing him to start earning his freedom.
  • Love Hurts: Kanou's way to express his love for Ayase does more harm than good to the poor teenager.
  • Love Redeems: Subtly but surely, Kanou is getting a little more human thanks to Ayase's influence.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: Kanou, please think logically about your actions! He does try. And then, he sees Ayase being cute, and all coherent thought flies out of the window...
  • Lack of Empathy: In the manga, Kanou and Misao are described as "people with no sense of humanity". In the OVA, Homare is included in such description by Someya.
  • Paper Fan of Doom: In the second OVA
  • Pitbull Dates Puppy: Kanou and Ayase. And how! Subverted to a point. Their relationship is supposed to work out somehow.
    • Kanou is a ruthless loan shark who won't hesitate to sell the organs of someone who owes him. The "Cooking with the guys" omake hints that he's definitely not above outright murdering people. He has an endless thirst for money and is extremely possessive and jealous of Ayase. Both his attitude and huge physique (6'5'') are intimidating.
    • Ayase is naïve, innocent, and delicate both in body and mind. All he wants is to be happy, and that others were happy as well. He is short (5'5''), very effeminate and cute.
  • Poor Communication Kills: From both protagonists, but especially Ayase, who's been like this for years, unable to express his opinions and instead going with what he thinks the others will like. He also has trouble turning his thoughts into words (mainly because he's afraid of saying something wrong and upsetting others).
  • Rape as Drama: Ayase gets raped on his first night in Kanou's hands. At first, there's heavy drama, Ayase being terrified of Kanou; later on, it dissolves to less obvious tension between the two. The rape as a "bad move" for Kanou's agenda gets a lot of panel time, in both more lighthearted ways and something that depresses Kanou.
  • Romanticized Abuse: Kanou seems to think that forcing himself upon Ayase is an appropriate way to express his affection.
  • Romantic Runner-Up: Homare and later Yamato who also has taken a shine to Ayase.
  • Stalker Shrine: What Tokikawa Takaii makes dedicated to Ayase.
  • Tall, Dark, and Handsome: Quite a bunch of characters, but especially Kanou and the Kuba twins.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Ayase. If there are two signs in front of him, and one says "towards rapist/slavery/death" and the other one says "to safety", he will always choose the former. Might be justified this usually happens to victims of rape, human trafficking, and abuse because they think that there's truly no way out. Plus, it doesn't help that Kanou is a member of the Yakuza...
  • Troubled, but Cute: Kanou, unsurprisingly for a seme.
  • Unsettling Gender-Reveal: Gion thought Ayase was female when he first met him.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: There is a bit of this about Kanou's treatment of Ayase. Gion calls him out on it, but despite Homare and others not bothering to hide their disapproval, no one else has the guts to actually say it. Mostly because Kanou is a little touchy on the subject of Ayase.
  • Work Off the Debt: Ayase is expected to use his body to pay off the cost of rescuing him from the slave auction.
  • Yakuza: Yeah, pretty obvious based on Kanou's business (and appearance), but what the hey.