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File:Omaha The Cat Dancer 5868.jpg

A Petting Zoo People sexually explicit Soap Opera about a feline stripper and her friends told with a sex-positive feminist point of view. The series started in 1978. The artist throughout the series has been Reed Waller, with the writing handled for the most part by Kate Worley until her death in 2004.

The titular character is a Catgirl in her early 20s working as an ecdysiast... a nightclub dancer, in the fictional town of Mipple City. Her boyfriend Chuck works as an artist and nominally supports her dancing career. After posing for a men's magazine centerfold, Omaha gets invited to a shady dance performance that turns out to be a drug-fueled orgy for various corrupt businessmen and government officials and while fleeing the scene with her boyfriend, Omaha's best friend Shelley is shot while leading them to safety. From there, Omaha and Chuck get dragged into a byzantine plot between various power brokers that includes Chuck's father Charles Tabey Sr. - one of the most wealthy and powerful men in the state. While dealing with the external political plots, the whole cast of characters also have to cope with complex emotional issues that can shatter their lives.


Tropes:

  • Author Existence Failure: The series stopped production at various points due to a car accident (Worley), colon cancer (Waller), and lung cancer (Worley) that claimed the writer in 2004. Worley's husband James Vance worked with her notes to write out the final chapters beginning in 2006.
  • Barefoot Cartoon Animals: The entire cast, most of the time. Interestingly, the characters' feet have an atypically human appearance for this trope.
  • Big Bad: Originally was media magnate Andre DeRoc. Later it was Senator Bonner.
  • Bi the Way: Some of the supporting cast, especially Omaha's best friend Shelley and Chuck's ex-girlfriend Jo, are bisexual.
    • Omaha herself can be Bi-Curious from time on time.
  • Blackmail: Senator Bonner threatens Omaha by mentioning "David".
  • Catgirl: also Dog Girl, Rabbit Girl, Bird Girl, Fox Girl...
  • Chessmaster: Charles Sr. is seen in the beginning playing with a chess board. He basically manipulates a lot of other characters - including his own son - like chess pieces.
  • Crossover: The "Images of Omaha" benefit series to pay for Reed Waller's medical bills featured pin-ups and artwork pairing Omaha with P'Gell from Will Eisner's The Spirit, Bob Burden's Flaming Carrot, Dave Sim's Cerebus, and the inhabitants of Larry Marder's Beanworld.
  • Didn't See That Coming: Multiple times.
    • Didn't expect Charles Sr. at the peak of his plans to commit suicide.
    • Bonner, thinking he had just secured a humiliating victory over his enemy Chuck, Didn't expect his hired "whore" Jo pull out a gun and humiliate him with her own plan to protect Chuck and Omaha.
      • Which is topped by another unexpected surprise when someone shoots Bonner from outside the hotel room, catching Jo and Rob off-guard with a dead body and the police en route.
  • Disney Death
  • Driven to Suicide: Charles Sr.
  • Dye or Die: Omaha dyes her hair blond when she argues with Chuck and leaves Mipple City, only to change it back to red when she reconciles with Chuck and returns.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Omaha. Flashbacks suggest Shelley and Omaha were more than friends. During the Bonner storyline, Jo kisses Omaha, hinting that Jo's plot to trap Bonner on camera committing his sex crimes is more for Omaha's sake than for Chuck.
  • Everybody Has Lots of Sex: Yes AND No. One issue would be couples hooking up, the next issue would focus on moving the plot forward with almost no sex at all.
    • Most of the major protagonists have had sex with one another at some point (except for the hetero guys, and with Rob who's gay). Jerry had sex with Omaha during the early storyline, although they remain friends and Jerry is fully loyal to Chuck.
  • Everyone Is a Suspect: Other than Jo and Rob, who the readers know were in another room, who shot Bonner?
  • Every One Remembers the Stripper: She's the main character. Duh.
  • Faking the Dead: Shelley gets shot in the first issue, but by issue 3 it's revealed she barely survived. Most of her storyline involves her - a dancer - coping with being wheelchair-bound for possibly the rest of her life.
    • Chuck's mom Maria. She was forced by Bonner to abandon Charles Sr. and baby Chuck when he threatened to expose her brother as gay. Chuck was told that she had died.
  • Foot Focus: For some reason, everyone walks barefoot.
  • Four-Fingered Hands: The entire cast has them.
  • Furry Comic
  • Furry Fandom: Debuted in a Funny Animal Fanzine in the 1970s.
  • Gambit Pileup: During the week that Bonner gets killed and Chuck and Omaha break up.
  • Girl-On-Girl Is Hot: Omaha and Jo, early on.
  • Good People Have Good Sex: Mostly. Good people at least try to have good sex, but the emotional consequences flare up in some unexpected ways. Played straight with the villains, especially Bonner, who prefer using sex simply to achieve their personal ambitions.
  • Go Mad From the Revelation: It's revealed that both Charles Sr. and Chuck suffer from manic depressive mood swings. When Chuck finds out what Bonner did to his mother, he snaps and begins acting as manic as his father. When we see Chuck again, he's on a mental institution and is SO stuffed of drugs that he doesn't even knows what is going on anymore. Fortunately, he gets better.
  • Hide Your Gays: Averted. Rob, the major gay character, gets his fair share of sex just like the heteros. The main characters have friendly and open relations with the gay/lesbian community and are viewed as equals.
    • Played straight with Maria, who surrenders to Bonner's blackmail in order to protect her gay brother from public exposure.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Jo.
  • It's Not Porn, It's Art: While very sexually explicit, critics who favorably reviewed the comic noted the high degree of storytelling and specified that Omaha is not a pornographic comic.
  • The Lancer: Jerry, Chuck's friend and Charles' most competent underling.
  • Like Father, Like Son: Charles Sr. and Chuck. They even look alike... naked.
    • They also share some unhealthy traits, like manic depression.
    • Turn Out Like His Father: What Chuck is terrified of doing Especially after his father dies and Chuck is left in control of Charles' empire... and schemes.
  • Mature Animal Story
  • My Girl Is Not a Slut: Chuck is well aware of Omaha's job as a stripper: it's how they met. He does think they are in a sexually monogamous relationship, except for when Jo offered a threesome. He doesn't know that Omaha was once married, and she never got a divorce. When Omaha tells him to defuse Bonner's threat, Chuck freaks and they break up.
    • Speaking of Jo, she and Chuck were dating before they broke up and Chuck met Omaha. They briefly rekindle their relationship while Omaha is out of the picture, but then Chuck walks in on Jo as she's servicing a John. Chuck quickly realizes Jo had been doing that back when they dated...
  • Petting Zoo People: The characters are just humans drawn with animal heads and tails. Their hands and feet are human, albeit with fewer digits.
  • Porn Name: Does she look like a "Susan" to you?
  • Pride Before a Fall: How Bonner thinks he can beat Chuck like he earlier defeated Charles Sr.: "His pride." It almost works.
  • Rape as Drama: At one point Chuck forcibly has sex with Omaha when she's clearly not in the mood and she ends up in tears. She later calls him on it, and he realizes he did something VERY wrong, so he makes up for it (by getting kinkier for her sake and organizing a threesome!).
  • Shout-Out: the comic began as a sexy animal parody of Charlie's Angels (with Omaha, Jo and Shelly as the Angels). The parody aspect was quickly dropped for a Soap Opera storyline.
  • Slice of Life
  • Sliding Scale of Gender Inequality: Hoo boy, it would take a team of sociologists to measure this. The society in Omaha's world looks down on sex, and has men in powerful offices abusing women as sex toys. On the other hand, Omaha and her friends are open about their sexual choices, pursue relationships with nice guys like Chuck and Jerry who treat women with equal respect, and are willing to stand up publicly to defend themselves and their life choices.
    • When Omaha flees Chuck during their break-up, she travels to a small town, dyes her hair and tries to find "respectable" work as an office secretary. She quickly discovers the pay is lousy compared to her job as a stripper, that the women are forced to do all the work, and that the men who "run" the office are sexist bastards. She quits before the day is even over and heads straight for the nearest strip club to get more honest work there.
    • What's sad is that Omaha is essentially our world, with Furry characters.
  • Three-Way Sex: both girl/boy/girl and boy/girl/boy.
    • Omaha and Chuck are involved both times. First with Jo in the GBG, when Jo was hired by Charles Sr. to babysit them. Then during the BGB with the guy Omaha dated during her break-up with Chuck.
  • Underground Comics
  • Wham! Episode: It's a Soap Opera, there's one about every three episodes.
    • "Everybody was busy that week... mostly plotting. None of us knew that something was about to happen that would make all plans pointless... Well, maybe one of us knew..."
  • World of Funny Animals
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