Sunday, March 19, 2023

Today's Oz Comic

Okay, not that Ozzy, but a character does get a shout-out in today's One Big Happy. (This is not the first time Ruthie has used that name in the same context.)

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Another Oz Comics Roundup

More recent Oz comics:

Saturday, March 04, 2023

This Week's Oz Comics Roundup

I've had a busy time this week, but it's all winding down. This gives me a chance to close some tabs, including these two Oz comics from Thursday:

Monday, February 20, 2023

Cayke Did Not Make These Cakes

Cake Wrecks is a blog I follow daily. It showcases professionally made cakes, by real bakers, that have gone horribly wrong. Usually, there's a theme, especially when they present a whole series of cakes. Today, there was definitely an Ozzy theme to the presentation. You have been warned!

Sunday, February 19, 2023

This Week's Oz Comics Roundup

Only one this week, I'm afraid, and it was all the way back on Monday. But Dorothy does ask a good question in this edition of Eek!

Friday, February 03, 2023

Today's Oz Comic Foreshadowing?

Today in Heart of the City, Heart reveals the shows she wants to do, after missing out on the school's most recent production due to illness. Yeah, guess what one of them is? (Actually, way back in the beginning when Mark Tatulli was doing this strip, Heart played the Wicked Witch of the West, and threw in a rousing edition of "My Way" as she melted away.)

Wednesday, February 01, 2023

Today's Follow-Up to Yesterday's Oz-ish Comic

In today's vintage edition of PreTeena, you can't accuse Stick of not following up on what she said she'd sing yesterday.

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Today's Oz-ish Mention in a Comic

Oh, this one is definitely not Ozzy, but there is a mention of something famous for being Ozzy in today's rerun of PreTeena.

Monday, January 30, 2023

Today's Oz Comic

It feels like a really, really long time since we've had a new, genuinely Oz comic. But today, Rhymes with Orange breaks that streak with this little visit Toto made after getting back to Kansas. Now let's see if we can get some more Oz comics in the new year!

Sunday, January 29, 2023

This Week's Oz Comic Blog

This isn't a new one, but over on her blog, Rhymes with Orange creator Hilary B. Price had this remembrance of Oz comics past the other day.

Monday, January 09, 2023

Today's Vintage Oz Comic

Today's rerun of Nest Heads sees the kids mixing up their fantasy movies. (Since The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe movie came out in 2005, that gives you an idea how long ago this was now!)

Sunday, January 08, 2023

Today's Oz Sports Comic

As I write this, the Packers and Lions are playing the final regular season game of this year's NFL season. If the Lions win, my Seahawks go to the playoffs. As you may be able to guess from this cartoon, Phil Hands is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Go Lions!

UPDATE, Sunday night: Well whaddya know! The Lions won! Who're the cowards now, Packers?

Tuesday, January 03, 2023

Today's Oz Comic

It's the first Oz comic of 2023. Maybe! Bianca Xunice seems to be continuing her pumpkinhead saga. It's starting to look less and less likely that this is Jack. If this keeps up, I may not put them up every week.

Wednesday, December 28, 2022

The Latest Oz Reading

Yes, another roundup of Oz, Ozzy, Oz-related, and Oz-adjacent books I've read this year:

  • The first of two books I've read before, but now have new editions, is Mary Louise and Josie O'Gorman by "Edith Van Dyne". In this case, Ms. Van Dyne is not L. Frank Baum, as the book was published in 1922, three years after he died. This is from after Emma Speed Sampson writing the series. This is also the final book by "Edith Van Dyne" for my collection, as I now have all titles published under that name. Back to the book, though, this is badly misnamed, as Mary Louise is barely in it. This is definitely Josie's book, and she is certainly the more interesting character. When Mary Louise offers to turn the mansion she inherited (it's much too large for a young couple, just married) over to the Dorfield Children's Home Society, it sets a whole series of events into motion when a mysterious woman comes to town and presents two children to the society. Their story raises suspicions, and the girls believe they may not be orphans. This puts Josie O'Gorman, Girl Detective, on the trail, and she ends up traveling to Atlanta and Indiana, taking on new identities and occupations to uncover the mystery. Naturally, in the end, the family is reunited and the bad people get their just rewards. But it's no wonder that this was the last book to feature Mary Louise in the title, as Josie is certainly the star.
  • The second book I already have an earlier edition of, but it seemed appropriate to get the new, hardcover edition of The Gardener's Boy of Oz by Phyllis ann Karr after having read The Scorecrow of Oz earlier. Pon is now King of Jinxland, but as it's Queen Gloria who actually rus things, he has little to do, and decides to try fishing his father, King Phearce, out of the pond he was buried in. Enlisting the aid of Grewl, the former King Krewl and now the gardener's boy, they succeed, only for the three of them to slip further into the pond and into all kinds of adventures underground, even making their way to the other side of the world and having an audience with Tititi-Hoochoo. Candy Longtaw, meanwhile, is a Native American girl who ends up having adventures of her own, and even coming up with a novel way to cross the Deadly Desert. In the end, everyone meets up and secrets are uncovered, families are reunited, and lots of other stuff happens. It's a big, sprawling book that touches on a lot of other bits of Oz, but Karr also creates a lot of new lore as well. It had been a very long time since I'd last read it, so this was a nice revisit.
  • Under the Influence of Oz by Marin Elizabeth Xiques and Chris Dulabone isn't really an Oz book, as it continues the authors' previous adventures in Goblin Grotto, a land underneath Oz inhabited by (naturally) goblins. The inhabitants of Heartbreak Hostel, a home for the homeless, seem to be losing their memories and identities, and hostile forces are moving in to take advantage and turn the hostel into a money-making resort. Of course it all works out in the end, and the Cowardly Lion and Tik-Tok come in towards the end to bring in an Oz element.
  • Stairway to Oz by Robin Hess. Ryan is visiting his grandparents in Colorado. Curiosity gets the best of him, and he opens the locked door into the basement, where he finds himself in the Nome Kingdom! Yes, his grandparents' house is the one previously owned by the Shaggy Man's brother. Like Shaggy's brother, Ryan ran into trouble with the Nomes, but he manages to deal with them. But there's been a coup in the Nome Kingdom, and the new King intends to invade Oz! Ryan recruits his grandparents, some Nomes who prefer King Kaliko, and other allies to save the day and rid Oz of the Nomes. I liked the premise of the starway, and that Ryan actually brought adults to Oz with him.
  • And finally (for now), The Brides of Maracoor by Gregory Maguire, the first of the "Another Day" trilogy that follows Rain, Elphaba's granddaughter, after the events of Out of Oz. Rain and Iskinaary, the Goose, wash up on the shore of an island inhabited by seven women who have important spiritual duties to perform. Suffering amnesia, Rain's presence upsets the balance of life on the island. Lucikles, the examiner from the mainland, comes for his annual visit, and doesn't know what to do, but decides to let Rain stay there until he can get instructions. He arrives on the mainland in the aftermath of an invasion, and it is some time before he can make his report and receive those instructions. Then things start to get very interesting. Other than Rain—and it even takes a while for her to enter the story—there isn't a lot of Oz in this book, but events at the end indicate that may change as the series progresses. Maguire paints a fascinating portrait of this new part of his world, which is something like ancient Greece but with the efficiency of the Roman or Chinese civil service. He is definitely setting something up, and I'm actually looking forward to seeing what happens next.
And that's all the books I have right now. But there will be more of these reports, as I also have a surprisingly large pile of comic books and graphic novels here.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

The Latest Oz Reading

Yup, another roundup of Ozzy things I've read this year.

  • Queen Ann in Oz by Karyl Carlson and Eric GJovaag. Yeah, I read my own book. Well it has been a long time now, and I don't think I've ever read it just for the sake of reading it. Every time I've read it, it's with an eye towards publication. But it still stands up well, even if the story structure is a little too linear, some of the characterizations needed a little more fleshing out, and some of the revelations are telegraphed a little too much. I'm still proud of it, though, and I think we did a good job. I also got to enjoy Karyl's follow-up novella, Jodie in Oz, once again. The final chapter of Queen Ann, which brings Jodie Button's quest to an end, was excised from the original publication, so rather than restore it for this new edition, Karyl expanded it into a whole new story, which brough Ozma, Trot, and Cap'n Bill into things. Predating everything else in this book, though, is my own solo contribution, "Another Adventure with Ann", a skit I wrote for the 1988 Winkie Convention. It was all very silly, but we did allude to a few events from it in Queen Ann, so it made a nice bonus, and brought back some fond memories. (But has it really been about thirty-five years now???)
  • The second Dorothy Must Die novella, "The Witch Must Burn" by Danielle Paige. This one is told from the point of view of Jellia Jamb, and tells the tale of how Dorothy wormed her way into a leadership role in the Emerald City, and not in a nice way. Jellia also ends up working for Glinda the Good for a while, and that ends up being a harrowing experience as well. In the end, Jellia sees no choice but to join the resistance movement and act as a spy in the palace.
  • Book 2 of the Royal Explorers of Oz series, The Crescent Moon Over Tarara by Marcus Mébès, Jared Davis, and Jeff Rester. The ship picks up a few more passengers, most notably Princess Truella of Mo and her Ork escort, as it heads towards Tarara. Tandy is looking forward to seeing his homeland again, but he is surprised to find that he has been away so long that Tarara has moved on with new leadership, and he's been all but forgotten. Nevertheless, the crew is welcomed and sets off to explore the continent. They encounter the flying lizards and creeping birds first mentioned in Captain Salt in Oz, and discover some unpleasant secrets as well, before hitting the seas again, where they meet up with some characters from Ruth Plumly Thompson's non-Oz books before finally preparing for their next adventure, which may take them back to Oz.
  • I've also been reading some shorter stuff. The February 12, 2022 issue of Closer magazine has a big "Secrets from the Set!" article about the making of the 1939 film version of The Wizard of Oz, which I suspect was reprinted from an earlier issue.
  • I also read the two latest issues of Dunkiton Press, compiled by Ruth Berman. She finds public domain pieces of Ozzy interest in old newspapers and packages them in annual theme issues. The 2021 collection is the second "Yuletide" set, while the just-released 2022 volume is a collection of some of Ruth Plumly Thompson's Perhappsy Chaps stories that haven't been reprinted anywhere else yet. (I can't help but think that there could be a market for a print-on-demand edition of The Complete Perhappsy Chaps.)
  • Finally (for now) comes The Art of Oz by Gabriel Gale and John Fricke, a spectacular album of Gale's artistic interpretations of Oz characters. He delves into the anatomy of such characters as the Winged Monkeys, the Hammerheads, the Hoppers, and the Scoodlers in spectacular detail. Gale also creates some contemporaries of Tik-Tok who are powered by means other than clockwork. With Fricke's knowledgeable text putting the art into context, it's a terrific overview of Baum's Oz raised to a new level for the twenty-first century.
I have a few more books to get through this week, so stay tuned for more!

Today's Oz Comic

I'll be brief: Jack Pumpkinhead's guest appearance in Six Chix continues.

Thursday, December 22, 2022

The Latest Oz Reading

Yes, I'm still reading Oz stuff. No, I haven't had a chance to write them up much here. But now I'm on winter break, so I'm going to do my best to catch up before I have to go back to work. They're going to be all over the place, from both this most recent wave and the last one. There will be old and new books, magazines and comics, and maybe a few other surprises. It's going to get kind of random!

  • 'aS 'IDnar pIn'a' Dun qon L. Frank Baum, mugh DeSDu'. When I finished the Klingon tree on Duolingo, I rewarded myself with this book. Yes, it is indeed a translation of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz into Klingon. Unfortuanetly my Klingon is still weak, and I can't read it well, but I do understand the sentence structure and at least some of the vocabulary. But this is going to truly be a long-term project to completely understand this one. I wish it had illustrations, and perhaps a glossary of new words created or discovered for this book, but I'm not at all unhappy having this.
  • Father Goose: His Book by L. Frank Baum, illustrated by W. W. Denslow. I have a very early edition of this book, but it's over one hundred and twenty years old now, so I'd rather not handle it more than I have to. This reprint edition is terrific if I just want to read or browse these poems. It's smaller than the original, but Denslow's art still reproduces well. In fact, publisher Marcus Mébès did some light restoration where the original publication was just misaligned enough to detract. He also didn't touch a word, even though many of the depictions of peoples that were considered amusing in 1899 fall very flat today. It is a nice way to get this book. It is only lacking a learned essay about the book's background and development and its influence on the careers of both Baum and Denslaw, but that may have to wait for another edition.
  • Another rare piece of Baumiana also available from Mébès and Lulu is L. Frank Baum's Juvenile Speaker, which features excerpts and extracts from many of Baum's works suitable for recitation, which is a thing people did back in the day. Although this was originally published by Reilly and Britton, permission was granted by Bobbs-Merrill and the Century Company to include works that they then controled, so this book includes Reilly and Britton's first ever publication of any material from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The star of the book may be the finale, "Prince Marvel: A Playlet for Children" which was original to this volume, and is a highly simplified dramatization of The Enchanted Island of Yew. It's a fun collection of Baum's works, and includes an afterword by Michael W. De Jesus. It's one of the rarest Baum titles today, so I greatly appreciate having access to the material here.
  • Greensleeves by Eloise Jarvis McGraw. This reread has been a long time in coming, as I hadn't read it since college, way back in the '80s. When I discovered the juvenile literature section of my college library, one of the first itemsI found was The Phoenixand the Capret by E. Nesbit, which I had started in third grade but didn't finish then. Then I hunted down the books by Eloise. I had probably only recently read Merry Go Round in Oz, but I at least had The Forbidden Fountain of Oz, so although I knew her Oz books, this was my first exposure to the rest of her works. Later, a beat up old library copy was one of the first items I ever purchased from Amazon, but I have never read that copy because this is a new reprint, thanks to legendary Seattle librarian Nancy Pearl including it in her Book Crush Rediscovery series. Upon rereading this, I remembered bits and pieces, but for the most part this was practically a new book for me. Shannon Lightley, the daughter of an international film star and a renowned director, has just graduated from high school in rural Oregon where, as just about everywhere else she's ever lived, she never really fit in. She doesn't know what to do next, but a family friend, a probate lawyer in Portland, needs someone to investigate a strange will, and Shannon reinvents hersolf as Georgetta Smith, rents a room at a boarding house, takes a waitressing job in the diner across the street, and spends the summer getting to know the locals. In the process, she also learns more about herself, falls in love (maybe), learns more about the eccentric deceased, and touches the lives of all around her as they do the same for her. It's a great little slice-of-life story, although it is definitely set in a smaller, 1960s version of Portland. Shannon is a fascinating character, and we see a lot of changes in her through the course of her summer. I'm glad I finally got to reread it.
  • I still have a lot of Eloise's books to reread, but I also have a lot of books by Rachel Cosgrove Payes to read for the first time. My latest was the only book she wrote under a pen name that wasn't a science fiction novel by "E. L. Arch". This was part five of a romance series by "Joanne Kaye", set in the New York fashion world. (Kaye was a house name, and it's entirely possible that the other books in the series were all written by different authors.) According to some collectors of Rachel's work, this is one of the hardest of her titles to track down, so when I saw a copy for sale I snatched it up. Our heroine, Suzanna Blake, is looking to expand into sports fashion, and heads to Paris to mingle and possibly find a tennis player to work with at the French Open. She becomes enmeshed with the affairs of Ginny Norris, a young prodigy who is under the thumb of her stepfather/manager. Ginny is secretly engaged, and when one of New York's most notorious tabloid gossips gets wind of this, Ginny finds she needs Suzanna as an ally. It's all pretty standard potboiler/romance stuff, and of the many romances I've read written by Rachel, this has the steamiest, most graphic descriptions of carnal acts. Between Oz, science fiction, and this, I can certainly attest to Rachel being a versatile writer! It's harmless fun, but a lot of the attitudes in this book have changed in forty years, and since Ginny is only sixteen, some of it definitely made me cringe. The characters' attitudes towards lesbians wouldn't fly these days, either.
And that's it for now, but I suspect thre will be a lot more in tte coming days.

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

The Latest Oz Comics Roundup

Yeah, I've been busy. So have the comics creators! Here's what I've found for December so far:

  • December 3, someone misinterprets a message for Dorothy in Free Range.
  • Over in Six Chix, Tuesday artist Bianca Xunise seems to have a thing for Jack Pumpkinhead, because he (or someone looking an awful lot like him) has appeared in three post-Halloween strips so far this month, on December 6, December 13, and December 20. Yes, if he shows up again on the 27th I'll inform you as quickly as I can.
  • Finally, Jack appears in another strip, probably dealing with the aftermath of all that Halloween candy over in the December 17 edition of Bizarro.

Monday, December 05, 2022

Today's Oz Political Cartoon

Over at the Buffalo News, Adam Ziglis puts a new in-the-news spin on an old favorite.

Sunday, December 04, 2022

This Week's Comics Wrap-Up

It has been a busy week, with the change from one trimester (grades!) to another (What am I teaching? Who am I teaching it to???) at school this past week*. But I think I'm nearly ready, so now I just have time before going to bed tonight to show you which Oz comics I found online this past week.

That's an Oz strip for four straight days, which is an impressive streak. But I was still disappointed when I didn't find one on Friday.