As promised, here's the continuation of MAGICIAN OF OZ's review of this wonderful Children's Digest serialized, 4-part printing of The Wonderful Wizard of OZ and Evelyn Copelman's illustrations
Before I begin, I would like to take a moment to lament the missing February, 1954 issue of Children's Digest.
When we left Dorothy in part 1 (January 1954), she was taking a nap while The Tin Man constructed a raft to cross the mighty river (The Munchkin River?) just past the Great Forest where they found The Cowardly Lion.
In part 2, Dorothy and her new friends come across a field of strange, magical flowers and find themselves at their mercy. Soon, The Queen of the Field Mice and her subjects come to the rescue.
I would have liked to see how Evelyn Copelman portrayed the Deadly Poppy Field and The Queen of the Field Mice. I've always had a soft spot for the Queen and her subjects. They had proven their worth in saving The Cowardly Lion from the Deadly Poppy Field despite their fear of the big cat.
It would have been nice to see The Queen of the Field Mice in the movie, but that argument is best saved for another day.
From there, Dorothy and her party travel to Emerald City and meet the Guardian of the Gates where they had a nice meal and rest.
How would Ms. Copelman have handled this? I'll never know unless I find that issue.
I would also love to see how she portrayed "Oz, the Great and Terrible!" during Dorothy's visit to see him. And what of those green glasses?
So much for laments... MAGICIAN OF OZ offically declares, on to part 3 of the Children's Digest serialized, 4-part printing of The Wonderful Wizard of OZ.
The cover of this issue; March 1954, features Casey Jones, King of the Railroad and various other stories. No mention is made of OZ 'till you look at the Table of Contents.
The Part 3 title page gives us an update on the progress of the story to date.
Part 3 starts out with the title of: Dorothy Meets The Wicked Witch and features a great view of The Tin Man's tuneup. Done in blue and black with tools and workers busy at their task, this image by Evelyn Copelman once more portrays The Tin Man as Baum had envisioned him. It has an industrial feel to it and fits right into the overall theme that Copelman is trying to convey.
As we turn the page, we get our first look at the Wicked Witch of the West and in this drawing, Copelman gives us the sense of her evilness, including the one eye. Why the movie fails to bring this important element to the screen is beyond me. It certainly would have made her even more evil than she already was portrayed. There is a hint of green, keeping with the movie theme of green witches. I likes the part where her eye is as "powerful as a telescope." Being an astronomer, I'd love to know a bit more about the optics of her ocularity... Hee hee..
Turning the pages once more, we find The Scarecrow having been reassembled with fresh straw and once more, looking very much like the Ray Bolger characterization. I've tried to address this odd departure from the stylized Baum vision in my last post, so no need to return to that thought.
Another turn of the page and we see The Wizard of OZ in his balloon as he explains to Dorothy how he came to be in this Wonderful Land of OZ. I like the hat...
Finally, as we reach the end of part 3, Dorothy and her friends are awaiting "The Great and Terrible Humbug" and his solution to Dorothy's problem. No OZ images here but the publishers have include a wonderful one-page story called "How Does the Sun make a Rainbow?". This is a very nice touch from an editorial staff who was thinking very much of the children who read this publication. Since this is the original story of OZ, we don't yet get to see another one of my favorite characters, Polychrome, The Daughter of the Rainbow. Perhaps she'll show up in later issues?
As one who teaches Weather & Climate, I can appreciate this from a very personal perspective.
In MAGICIAN OF OZ's next installment, we come to the conclusion of the serialized, 4-part printing of The Wonderful Wizard of OZ.
Following that final chapter, MAGICIAN OF OZ moves on to another review of another Oz book found at Goodwill.