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Series / Lost in Oz

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Lost in Oz was a 2002 One-Episode Wonder based on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. It was written by David Hayter (yes, that David Hayter). As only one episode was made, the pilot will be summarized rather than the overall plot.

The plot follows a modern-day 21-year-old girl named Alex Wilder, who is whisked into the Land of Oz by a tornado. There, she meets Caleb Jansen, a time-displaced fighter pilot from World War II (call sign "Scarecrow"), and Selina, the Patchwork Girl, a Goth Warrior Poet radically different from her character from the Oz books. Alex learns that the Wicked Witch of the West has returned, bringing chaos to the land, and the three of them vow to stop her.

Bellaridere, the Good Witch of the South, tells them of Ozma, a girl trained to fight the Witch and restore peace. However, Ozma has been captured by the Witch, and the trio must work to save her. Bellaridere gives Alex a bottled tornado as an incentive, saying that once Ozma is freed, she can use it to take her home. However, 'Scarecrow' wants to use it for himself...

As they venture on their journey to the West, Selina eventually tells Alex that the Wicked Witch is the same one Dorothy defeated, now possessing Selina's best friend. When the Witch realized Dorothy could actually kill her, her soul possessed the girl and took the name Loriellidere.

They venture across Oz to rescue Ozma. However, when they confront the Witch, she reveals that Ozma has been enchanted to be a little girl forever, and they've failed her. Selina is subdued, but when Caleb pulls a gun on the Witch and explains how it can kill her, Alex starts to glow with energy. Alex learns that she is next in line to be the Wicked Witch's host; thus, they can't kill Loriellidere. Things are looking grim, until Alex opens the bottled tornado. Rather than using it to get home, she uses it to send the Wicked Witch far away.

The episode ends with Alex pondering the implications of being the next Witch, realizing the magic is part of her. Bellaridere explains that Ozma can't help them now, and asks Alex to lead them through the times ahead; Selina adds that no one but Dorothy ever posed a threat to the Witch before. Alex resolves to fight, and she and Caleb share a romantic moment.

And then the show was never picked up, so it never got beyond that one episode.

The pilot can be seen here on Dailymotion or here on YouTube. Bootleg DVDs of it are also around.

Not to be confused with the 2015-2018 CGI series of the same name.

This show contained examples of:

  • Action Girl: Selina helps out against the Wheelers, and attempts to fight the Witch physically.
  • And the Adventure Continues: The ending, as they discuss how they're going to get home.
  • Animated Armor: Bellaridere commands a regiment of tin soldiers. Unfortunately, they can't enter the Western border to help, since Bellaridere's power only extends as far as the South.
  • Badass Boast: Loriellidere gets one when Caleb holds her at gunpoint.
    Loriellidere: You? Kill me? I rule the ocean. I walk the skies. My eyes weep fire; my heart freezes liquid! I am the Wicked Witch of the West, and I cannot be killed by an inconsequential Earthborn nothing!
  • Big Bad: The Wicked Witch of the West, AKA Loriellidere, is the main villain and caused the plot, instigating a war than dragged Alex to Oz to save it.
  • Big Good: Bellaridere, the Good Witch of the South, aids the heroes and advises them on their journey.
  • Blow You Away: Alex weaponizes the bottled tornado against the Witch to blow her away.
  • The Chosen One: Alex was chosen to save Oz.
  • Continuity Nod: Besides the Patchwork Girl and Ozma, a tiger, presumably the Hungry Tiger, appears. All three are from the later Oz books.
  • Darker and Edgier: Oz is under siege by a new Wicked Witch, Dorothy is long gone, and all the Munchkins are dead.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Selina is initially cold and solely focused on her mission, but she warms up to Alex and Caleb later on.
  • Demonic Possession: The Witch possessed Selina's friend to cheat death.
  • Distressed Damsel: Ozma has been captured and must be rescued if she's to help save Oz.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: All the Munchkins are apparently dead, having been murdered offscreen.
  • Dull Surprise: Alex has a lot of these moments, even in dramatic scenes.
  • Dystopian Oz: The story picks up where the first Oz book left off, showing that the power vacuum from Dorothy killing the witches made things worse. When Alex is called to Oz to save it, it's being overrun by a new Wicked Witch, who killed all the Munchkins and is pressing into the other territories.
  • Explaining Your Powers to the Enemy: When the Witch is skeptical that Caleb's gun can kill her, he explains exactly how it works to her, making her realize it can kill her.
  • Friend-or-Idol Decision: Both Caleb and Alex go through this as they wrestle with helping Oz or using the tornado to go home immediately.
  • Good is Not Nice: Bellaridere's soldiers capture Alex and company, and she's essentially blackmailing them to fight the Witch. On the other hand, she does have the best interests of Oz in mind.
  • Heroism Incentive: The bottled tornado that will take Alex and Caleb home.
  • Hope Bringer: Bellaridere hopes Alex will become a source of hope for Oz.
  • Hotter and Sexier: The Witch is quite beautiful, while in the book and movie she was old and ugly. The girl she's possessing looked good.
  • Info Dump: Selina tends to explain the plot or backstory at times, as does Bellaridere.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Caleb is cold and standoffish, but he's not that bad a guy.
  • Large Ham: Mia Sara's performance as the Wicked Witch. She clearly enjoyed the role.
  • Literal-Minded: The Wicked Witch does this at one point.
    Alex: I was told that if I freed that little girl I could go home. I don't have any part in this, I'm just stuck in the middle.
    Witch: You poor girl... stuck in the middle... [brandishes knife] Allow me to illustrate what that phrase means to me.
  • MacGuffin: The bottled tornado is the only thing guaranteed to get Alex and Caleb home.
  • Mobile Maze: Loriellidere's labyrinth is easy to get into, but when the heroes try to escape, the hallways shift and lead them straight back to the Witch.
  • Ms. Exposition: Bellaridere and Selina both explain the plot.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Loriellidere wears very revealing outfits, especially after waking up from a nap.
  • Muggles Do It Better: Caleb pulls a gun on the Witch; while she claims it can't kill her, it apparently can, as Alex is chosen to be the next Witch. That can only happen if she's aware of impending death.
  • Mythology Gag: Alex finds the remains of Dorothy's house on the western border, and asks why. In the original Oz books, West and East were switched on the map.
  • Neck Lift: Loriellidere grabs Selina by the neck and throws her into a wall.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Caleb is supposed to be a fighter pilot from the 1940s. For some reason he sounds more like he's from modern day California.
  • Older Than They Look: Princess Ozma, by way of being enchanted into a young child.
  • Psycho Knife Nut: The Witch prefers to use knives to kill, even wearing knives on her hands.
  • Recycled In SPACE: This show is essentially ''Buffy the Vampire Slayer in Oz.
  • Rhymes on a Dime: Selina speaks in rhyme on occasion.
  • The Reveal: Two of them. Ozma has been enchanted and can't fight, and Alex is next in line to be a Wicked Witch.
  • Scare Chord: When Selina's friend is possessed by the Witch there's a loud scare chord and close-up of her gray eyes.
  • Screaming Warrior: Selina screams when attacking the Wheelers and Loriellidere.
  • Spell My Name with an S: Loriellidere and Bellaridere have hard-to-spell names. Selina is also spelled Serena and Selena depending on the media.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Alex and Caleb find it hard to get along, let alone work together.
  • The Stoic: Selina tends to speak emotionlessly, with the only time she breaks being when she explains about the Witch possessing her friend.
  • Taken for Granite: Caleb, after disobeying the statue guardian's orders, is slowly turned into a statue.
  • The Three Trials: To open Horn's Gate, the heroes must answer three riddles. Selina answers the first two and Alex answers the third.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Caleb disobeys a statue guardian's orders and is nearly killed as a result.
  • Tsundere: Alex. She constantly treats Caleb like the enemy and refuses to believe that he's good.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Caleb isn't fond of shooting women, but he makes an exception for the Witch.
  • "Uh-Oh" Eyes: Loriellidere's eyes, when using magic, turn a pale grey. As do Alex's.
  • Underwater Base: Heroic version with Bellaridere's palace, which is under a lake.
  • The Unseen: The Witch's flying monkeys are mentioned as having torn Selina apart, but they aren't seen.
  • Warrior Poet: Selina speaks in rhyme and is proficient in combat.
  • Weird Moon: The Witch uses the moon to find her enemies' purpose; she can also apparently bind it with ancient rites.
  • "What Now?" Ending: The episode ends with Alex and Caleb wondering what to do next.
  • Xenafication: Ozma, a peaceful princess in the books, was trained to be a warrior to fight the Witch. It ends up a subversion, as by the time they rescue her she's lost all fighting capabilities.