Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Wicked Day!

Oct. 30th is Wicked Day, which is a worldwide celebration in conjunction with the Wicked musical to help promote an enviromental-friendly event. It's extremely big in the U.K., which this year is on Nov. 1. There are official parties going on all over the world, while private parties and events are also listed on the main website.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Emeralds Character Bios: Scraps the Patchwork Girl

Scraps is one of my fave underdog characters from the original Oz books, mostly because she appears to be clueless and flighty, but actually very sharp and affectionate. In Emeralds, the Patchwork Girl is Scarecrow's bodyguard. As he's the new acting Wizard, she does her best to protect him. It's been long established that Scraps and Scarecrow have feelings for each other, so I really wanted to establish them as lovers in this series. Plus, they're just so dark cute together! Scraps now has the appearance of a female clown or mime with long dark pigtails, plus a more skintight patchwork outfit which was modeled largely after Catwoman's from Batman Returns.

Emerald City Confidential PC game

A PC adventure game that recently came out from Wadjet Eye Games is Emerald City Confidential.

This is a direct followup to the original L. Frank Baum Oz books taking place about 40 years in the future. Dorothy is now called Dee, and hires the daring female detective Petra to find her missing fiance. Petra is a P.I. that has been secretly looking for her missing brother, while trying to expose the criminal activities of Lion who is now a cunning attourney. Dee's fiance was apparently involved in a plot with a mysterious wand which the evil Phanfasms are planning to use, although Queen Ozma wants it to bring the original four witches of Oz back to life.

The game features several of the regular characters, as well as some of secondary ones like Wogglebug, Jinjur, and Captain Bill, The game goes through many levels, mostly in Emerald City, but others like Quadling Country where magic tournaments are held by the former Wizard, and Winkie Country where Frogman is a gangster boss. There is some good gameplay, and clever dialogue. It's published by
Play First, but is also available for download through other licensed online dealers like Big Fish Games, and Game House. There's also a decent fan site about it.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Comic Review: OZF5-Gale Force

Back when Alias Enterprises(now called Lamp Post Inc.)did non-Christian comics, one of the titles they did a one-shot graphic novel called OZF5-Gale Force.

This alternate version of the original Wizard Of Oz opens up with Lion, Scarecrow, and Tin Woodman as might warriors fighting off the mechanical Winkie army of the Wicked Witch of the East(who's dressed like she's out of Aladdin!), and gets squashed by Dorothy's house. A modern-day Dorothy then emerges and helps them defeat the rest of the Winkies. The West Witch(who appears like she was modeled alot after Wicked)then sends her squadron of monkeys with jetpacks after them while Dorothy and the Oz warriors head to see the Wizard to send her back to Kansas. But, Dorothy confronts the Witch and defeats her. She's then declared the new Witch of the West by the monkeys.

This supposed to be the first of a series involving some "Witch Wars" in Oz, but currently only this one volume was made. The comic is available from regular dealers like Amazon. You can also now download it at Itunes.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Emeralds Character Bios: Scarecrow

In Emeralds, our old friend Scarecrow is the new resident Wizard of Oz. The original title character retired and left Oz, apparently around the same time as the original Northern Witch. Scarecrow was taught magic by the Wizard, and has passed on what he knows to Betsy Boppin who is now the new Western Witch, and partially taught Trot who is still in training to be the new Northern Witch. Scarecrow has developed a long-lasting relationship with his true live, Scraps the Patchwork Girl. Scraps acts as his personal bodyguard, and accompanies him everywhere. Scarecrow has become more of a wanderer along with Scraps, and never settling down to one place for too long, except for when his duties as the Wizard are needed.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Comic Review: The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz(Image Comics)

About two years before Marvel Comics came out with its adaptation of
The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz, Image Comics released an English-language version of the Spanish comic mini-series by Enrique Fernandez. This was adapted by David Chauvel, and released in America as a single graphic novel.

It's a very strait-forward interpetation of the original book, although Fernandez's artwork makes for a fantastic new take on it. He has a style that's totally different than most American artists, which is very reminicent of the old 2-D Rankin/Bass animated features(Thundercats, Last Unicorn).

Image formatted this in it's original album-size, and at an affordable price. Oz fans should love this collectors item.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Wizard Of Oz: Beyond The Yellow Brick Road video game

Another recent video game that just came out here is The Wizard Of Oz: Beyond The Yellow Brick Road for the Nintendo DS. Originally released in Japan late yast year under the title Riz-Zoawd, this is an RPG where you can shift between the regular Oz "Gang of 4". In it, Dorothy tries to find her way home with the help of Lion, Scarecrow, and Tin Woodman. There are a few differences between this and the original book, like the Emerald City being called Oz Castle. Another is instead of there being two wicked and two good witches, there's an elemental witch for every country in Oz, each of which controls a different element. Three of them are sisters, while the Glinda-type character of the south is their mother. Also, instead of Munchkins, there a little cat people, and there a bunch of random monsters roaming around like in most RPGs. This game was released in the U.S. in conjuction with the 70th anniversary of the 1939 movie.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Comic Review: Oz Of Halloween

A rather cute but short webcomic was done not long ago by "Lily-pily" of a crossover between Oz and The Nightmare Before Christmas titled Oz Of Halloween.

The story takes place a year before the original Nightmare movie where Scraps the Patchwork Girl wanders into Halloween Town, while Sally is mistaken for being her by Scarecrow and Jack Pumpkinhead. They are then both abducted by Princess Mombi(the version of Mombi from the Return To Oz Disney movie), who are ultimately rescued by Jack and Scarecrow, plus Ozma. Jack Skellington then arrives and is inspired by Jack Pumpkinhead to dress up like him for the next Halloween.

It's a nice comic, and worth checking out before you go trick-r-treating!