Columbus locations for Dema / Trench lore

By Ryan G

Disclaimer – serious themes are hidden behind much of the lore (some obvious – some not so). The purpose of this article is to have fun with an aesthetic and not make light of any themes

The other day, Twenty One Pilots’ Tyler Joseph dropped a bombshell on X. Every song on Clancy will have its own fully fledged music video. No simple visuals or lyric videos here. That got me thinking – since “Overcompensate” was filmed largely at the Columbus Athenaeum Theatre, what locations around central Ohio would fit the aesthetic of the DEMA / Trench / Blurryface story? Note: everything listed below is just speculation of one fan who lives in Columbus. Any filming locations that look familiar in music videos to be released is purely coincidental. Also, Tyler notes that not every video will be a part of the story, per se. I’m curious to see what that means.

Anyway – here we go!

The Dublin Field of Corn

I’m honestly not sure where in the lore this would fit in. But it seems odd, stark, and vaguely dystopian enough that it just might work as a filming location. Looking at this array of sculptures brings to mind the Neon Gravestones for some reason. The monoliths are intended to be whimsical and fun but communicate something foreboding instead. Neon is something meant to be fun and lighthearted, but a gravestone can’t be glorified enough to cover up what it really stands for… that’s the feeling I get looking at this piece of art. I may be way over thinking this, but come on, it’s my listicle, okay?


If the Schottenstein Center hadn’t worked out, this would have been an awesome place for the band to do their Livestream Experience in 2021. If Dan Lisden and Sally Sacarver were real people, they might live here.

Hoover Dam (The Ohio one)

I mean just look at it. Brutalism at its finest. Looks like a final barrier in a video game with a boss on the other side. Could this be the final barrier Tyler has to leap over in order to escape Dema? Is Trash in the Dragon in captivity somewhere on the other side? Yes, I know Trash died in the music video for Saturday… but a man can dream.

Columbus Metropolitan Library Lobby

Looking at this lobby just makes me think of the next ceremonial sites for the bishops to conduct their rituals. Sans Keons, of course. Turn off those lights and put some weird fluorescent sculptures in, please!

GRAVITY Phase 2 plaza

Gravity without the color seems like it would be where all the Citizens of Dema would live. If you’re reading this Brett Kaufman, I mean no shade! I’ve been raving about it to my wife.

[Photo from Columbus Underground article by Brent Warren]

Franklinton Slingshot Sculpture

The set up is almost too perfect. Slingshot your way out of Dema into freedom. Plus the stark, striking nature of this sculpture just fits the overall aesthetic of Dema.

[Photo by Katiana Carmon for Columbus Underground]

The Fort

The bare aesthetic combined with the smattering of little businesses within makes The Fort seem like an ideal place for Dema citizens to plan their rebellion. Or, perhaps a staging ground for the Banditos while Josh rallies the troops?

The Book Loft in German Village

If Big Fun in the Short North is a suitable location, why not another iconic store? Imagine Tyler getting lost in here. It looks like a fun place, but the 40 rooms are a maze and can make you claustrophobic. Imagine getting lost in a novel and never getting out, only being lured further and further in. Someone from the outside will have to rescue you from your trance (sound familiar?).


The COSI building is the most Dema building in the city. It looms over you like a behemoth that’s threatening to swallow up the Scioto Peninsula. It looks like one of towers at the Dema city center has an overachieving cousin.

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