The Wizard Of Oz was a 1990s cartoon series produced by DiC Entertainment. Released around the 50th anniversary of the MGM movie, it was based on the movie as opposed to the books by L. Frank Baum. The series aired on ABC from September to December, 1990, with a total of 13 episodes, and did not get an ending before concluding.
Dorothy is summoned back to Oz by the Ruby Slippers because the Wicked Witch of the West has returned to life, brought back by her winged monkeys. The Witch wastes no time in seeking vengeance on those who defeated her. She steals the Scarecrow's diploma, the Tin Man's clock heart, and the Lion's medal of courage, sends the Wizard away in his balloon, then takes over the Emerald City. And, of course, she wants the Ruby Slippers most of all.
While the Emerald City is rescued in the two-part pilot, the Witch is still around. Dorothy and friends learn from Glinda that if the Wizard is returned to the Emerald City, they can defeat the Witch. The four friends travel across Oz to bring the Wizard back and defeat the Wicked Witch once and for all. meeting many characters along the way.
This DiC animation provides examples of:
- Animation Bump: In episodes where shading was used rarely, scenes with the Wicked Witch were well-animated.
- Art Shift: Over time, the animation quality decreased. For about half the series, everything was shaded, but in the second half shading was used sparingly.
- Big Bad: The Wicked Witch of the West is the main villain and causes all of the trouble in Oz.
- Big Eater: Truckle, who's even shown snacking on something in the intro.
- Big Good: Glinda, just like in the movie, opposes the Witch and is a source of help and comfort to Dorothy when she can't help directly.
- Canon Foreigner: The Wicked West Wind and Truckle the winged monkey are two in the main cast. Otherwise, almost everyone they meet in the episodes is an original character.
- Convenient Coma: The Lion enters one in "Dream A Little Dream"; Dorothy and the others must enter his dreams to help him wake up.
- Cut Short: It didn't get a finale, so the Wizard was still missing by the end.
- Dream Weaver: "Dream A Little Dream" had the cast entering the Lion's dreams to wake him up before he fell asleep forever thanks to magic. He could change the nature and details of the dream, but had to deal with the Wicked Witch trying to turn his dream into a nightmare.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: Truckle goes power-mad after temporarily gaining the Ruby Slippers, making the Witch his personal cook and assistant.
- Evil-Detecting Dog: Toto is able to quickly detect something's not right when the Witch and Truckle impersonate Aunt Em and Uncle Henry.
- Exact Words: If a wish on the Ruby Slippers was worded improperly, the results would often fall into this, like Dorothy wishing for a soft landing giving a carriage wheels made of flowers instead of stopping said carriage.
- Expy: Miranda the milkmaid from "The Marvelous Milkmaid of Mechanica" appears to be based on the Tinman's former fiancee from the original novel.
- Five-Episode Pilot: The pilot episode is two parts long, while every other episode is one part.
- Gypsy Curse: In "Fearless" the Witch disguises herself as a gypsy to curse the Lion into becoming completely fearless; this also makes him dangerously reckless, which she uses to her advantage.
- Honey Trap: In "Hot Air" the Witch poses as an attractive judge of a balloon race to lure the Wizard and attack with a snake.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: This happens to characters that the Witch erased from history in "Time Town."
- Lotus-Eater Machine: In "Not In Kansas Anymore" the Witch creates a fake Kansas for Dorothy to visit, posing as Aunt Em and attempting to entice her to remove the Ruby Slippers.
- MacGuffin: The Ruby Slippers are the powerful artifacts the Witch wants to secure control over Oz. They were given a power upgrade for the show, granting wishes when Dorothy clicked her heels.
- Meaningful Name: "Truckle" is an archaic word meaning to toady or kowtow, fitting Truckle's sycophantic personality.
- The Mentor: Glinda and the Wizard act as this to Dorothy, helping her learn life lessons and occasionally helping against the Witch.
- Monster Clown: A jack-in-the-box in Popland has a clown's face, and is rather rude.
- Motive Decay: The cartoon's Witch doesn't seem to remember that the Ruby Slippers were her sister's.
- Nice Shoes: Dorothy's Ruby Slippers. Which tend to help out Dorothy and her friends when in need of the shoes' magic.
- Nightmare Fuel: In-universe. "Dream A Little Dream" has the Lion being so scared of the Wicked Witch in his dreams that he has trouble sleeping at all.
- Nightmare Sequence: Several in "Dream A Little Dream" thanks to the Wicked Witch messing around with the Lion's dreams.
- No Ending: The series was canceled without having a proper finale.
- Planet of Hats: Most of the locations Dorothy visits are based around one thing, such as Pop-Land, a land full of jack-in-the-boxes, or Musicland, whose society is built around music.
- Plot-Irrelevant Villain: The Witch's appearance in "The Marvelous Milkmaid of Mechanica" is completely irrelevant to the main plot, which is about the tyrannical Clockmaker and Miranda the milkmaid, a lost love of the Tin Man's.
- The Rival: One episode has the Lion challenged by a hyena for the right to be King of the Forest.
- Series Goal: The main goal of the series was to return the Wizard to Emerald City and defeat the Witch for good.
- Shown Their Work: One episode had a book detailing the history of Oz as it happened, similar to Glinda's Magic Book of Records from the Baum books. Bad things happen when the Witch decides to rewrite it.
- Tickle Torture: "The Lion That Squeaked" has the Hyena tickle Dorothy in an attempt to get the Ruby Slippers.
- Villain Team-Up: A couple episodes have the Witch team up with other troublemakers of Oz, like the Hyena and the Clockmaker.