Elan's aesthetic sensibilities are mortally wounded by the arena pre-game show.
- Haley Starshine ◀ ▶
- Elan ◀ ▶
- Vaarsuvius ◀ ▶
- Mr. Scruffy ◀ ▶
- Blackwing ◀ ▶
- Polozius ◀ ▶
- Kilkil ◀ ▶
- Empress of Blood (on banner) ◀ ▶
- Gourntonk ◀ ▶
- Turban-Wearing Caster ◀ ▶
- Balcony Guard ▶
- A Pop Singer and her Dancers
- A Huge Crowd of Spectators
- Panel 1, Page 1
An aerial view of the gladiator arena.
- Panel 2, Page 1
Haley: Now, Elan, remember that when your dad gets here, you need to pretend that he's NOT a totally loathesome[sic] villain.
Elan: Don't worry, Haley, I'll be fine.
- Panel 3, Page 1
Elan: I know that sometimes, the hero has to play baccarat with the enemy, even though logically it would make more sense for them to just be trying to kill each other.
Elan: What I don't know is how to play baccarat.
- Panel 4, Page 1
Elan: Though I would guess it involves riding on a rat's back...
Vaarsuvius: I apologize for my tardiness.
Haley: Did Durkon stay back at the palace with his new best friend?
Vaarsuvius: Indeed. He indicated that he wished to finalize his research, in the event that we depart presently.
- Panel 5, Page 1
Polozius is glaring at Vaarsuvius.
Vaarsuvius: However, I am not certain as to why I should be required to supervise the feline.
Haley: Hey, you're the one who started hanging out with animals all of the sudden.
Vaarsuvius: ...My sanity demands that I not engage that statement.
- Panel 1, Page 2
Elan: Look at what's going on down there. That's just... obscene.
Haley: Then don't watch, honey.
Elan: How can I not watch? It's right there!
- Panel 2, Page 2
Elan: It's such a senseless waste of lives, all so they can pander to the basest urges of the audience.
Elan: No one is thinking about the impact on the people down in that arena, you know?
Elan: They'll never be the same after they're forced to participate in this, even if they DO make it out alive.
- Panel 3, Page 2
Elan: Everyone involved should be crying tears of shame for the tragedy of it all.
Elan: This may be what passes for "entertainment" around here, but to me, it's nothing but an abomination.
- Panel 4, Page 2
In the arena, a pop singer is performing with a troupe of dancers.
- Panel 5, Page 2
Haley: ...Elan, that's just the pregame—
Elan: I know! As a bard, I find the choreography morally indefensible!
- The airship in the first panel is of course a parody of the Goodyear Blimp.
- Baccarat is a card game played in casinos.
- This is the first appearance of Balcony Guard.