Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz: The Wizard Returns

Yes, at long last, new (for me) episodes of Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz! Boomerang came through with a whole batch of new episodes, so I'm going to do my best to blog about as many of them as I can over the next couple of weeks, before I have less time of my own to do this. It is especially important that I do the first few as quick as I can, because "The Wizard Returns" is the first of four interconnected episodes that finally sees the other title character appear in this show. But first, the Wicked Witch has concocted a plan to get Dorothy into the crystal ball. Wilhelmina invites Dorothy and the gang over to tea as a peace offering, but they sense it's a trap and get out of there—but now they finally know that the Wicked Witch is alive! As they contemplate this, the Wizard's balloon crashes into a nearby tree. In the Emerald City, the Wizard meets Ozma, who invites him to be one of her Royal Ozian Advisors. He accepts, despite Dorothy's warning that he's not a real wizard. Ozma lets him move into the throne room, who then tries to become Oz the Great and Powerful Oz again. (Yes, the giant flaming head and all.) He misses being respected and important, so Ozma takes pity on him and gives him another chance. He takes a pass on lunch to visit an old friend—and the last thing we see in this episode is the Wizard knocking on Wilhelmina's door!

Well, Dorothy says it's one of her strangest days ever, and she's right! What a coincidence that the Wizard returns at the same time Dorothy finds out the Wicked Witch is still alive! (I suspect we'll find out more later.) My biggest complaint about this episode is the Wizard's appearance: He has a mustache and a turban. The Wizard in The Movie (and let's face it, that's what this show is based on, despite the appearances of characters from the book) had neither. The mustache is not unprecedented (the Wizard in the 1990 DIC cartoon, also based on The Movie, sported a mustache), but the turban just doesn't work, and it all makes him look like Professor Marvel. Still, it is clearly the Wizard (the old flaming head set-up in the throne room is a nice homage), and it's good to see him in the show at last, but I'm not sure yet if it's going to be good for Oz having him back! We shall learn more in the next episode!

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