“ Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy - Fantasy / Theatrical Release: 2007 / Director: Nick Willing / Actors: Alan Cumming, Neal McDonough, Kathleen Robertson, Raoul Trujillo, Richard Dreyfuss ... / DVD released 2008-03-11 at Genius Products, Inc / Features of the DVD: Collector's Edition, Colour, DVD-Video, Widescreen, NTSC „
* Prices may differ from that shown
About the show
Tin Man is a three part mini-series which first aired on the Sci-Fi Channel in 2007 in the United States. Starting on 2nd December, the show aired on three nights, each showing one part of the series. The show came to the UK in 2008, the same year as it was released on region 1 DVD. The complete time of the show is 270 minutes.
DG lives in Kansas on a farm and working as a waitress, a job that she hates more than anything. In her dreams, she has visions of a lavender-eyed woman who warns her that a storm is coming, not that she takes any notice of her. However, a storm does come and quickly when the sorceress Azkadellia, ruler of another world called the O.Z. sends her men over in a travel storm to kill DG. With only one way to escape, DG's parents push her through the storm, sending her to the O.Z. - a land which should be completely foreign to her but is actually strangely familiar. Here, DG learns that she must be the one to stop Azkadellia from forever putting the O.Z. into darkness and being ruled by evil.
Alan Cumming as Glitch
Zooey Deschanel as DG
Richard Dreyfuss as The Mystic Man
Anna Galvin as "Lavender Eyes", the Queen of the O.Z.
Blu Mankuma as Tutor
Neal McDonough as Wyatt Cain
Keith Rennie as Zero
Kathleen Robertson as Azkadellia
Raoul Trujillo as Raw
Ted Whittall as Ahamo
What I thought
This was something that was recommended to me by my boyfriend's best friend. We have very similar taste in films and TV shows so I was definitely willing to give this a go. However, the star of Tin Man is Zooey Deschanel, an actress who I cannot stand. Recently though I have been growing to like actors I once thought I hated so I thought the case may be the same here.
Unfortunately, my opinions on Deschanel have not changed one little bit. Playing DG, protagonist of Tin Man, Deschanel should be bringing likeability to her character but I still couldn't stand her. While I did manage to feel a bit sorry for DG, being transported into a crazy world though a tornado, I just found the character extremely annoying. I do think that this was mainly down to Deschanel though and the small things that bugged me throughout. There never seemed to be very much conviction in her performance and she wasn't as believable as any of the other cast members.
Tin Man is a modern take on The Wizard of Oz although it definitely does not try to be anything close to a remake. Instead of having the regular tin man, lion and scarecrow there are characters with similar names but very different personalities and aims. In place of the tin man we have Wyatt Cain, a 'tin man' police officer who is played by Neal McDonough. I love him as an actor and thought that he was great in this role. The 'tin man' is a hard ass man who has been through a lot so is guarded against anyone he doesn't already know. I really enjoyed the fact that he was forced to be with other people that he wasn't comfortable with as this really brought out his personality.
Next is the lion, aka Raw in this version of the story. Raw does resemble a lion slightly but is of a different species altogether and he is a 'seer', someone who can see into a person's past through touching them. This version of the well-known and loved lion was so interesting and different that I couldn't help but like him. He is put into some pretty horrible situations that he just didn't want to be in so here, I really felt sorry for him. Raoul Trujillo who plays Raw is extremely talented as an actor and brings a lot of special qualities to this role.
Lastly in DG's gang is Glitch played by Alan Cumming. Glitch takes on the role which represents the scarecrow without a brain. However, in this version, Glitch doesn't have a brain as Azkadellia removed it. Glitch has a big metal zip running down his head where the parting of his hair should be. He's a very eccentric character because he has no brain and often gets things confused. Glitch was definitely one of my favourite characters due to his insane personality but also sweet demeanour.
As a group, these four characters and actors do work pretty well together. Each character is so different that it has something special to offer for the audience as well as interesting backgrounds. Each character evolves over the course of the three episodes as we get to learn more about them and as they encounter different problems and events.
The world of the O.Z. is extremely different to that of Oz. While creators have kept some things quite similar with characters like the good witch and the bad witch, others are completely different. DG's parents are questionable and some of the creature in the O.Z. are absolutely terrifying but fascinating at the same time. Each part of this mini-series has something exciting happening at all times while still exploring DG's past. DG never knew that she was from the O.Z. although she had dreamed about it previously. Even though I didn't like Zooey Deschanel, I did like the way in which her character grew along her journey.
The plot is quite straight forward and very easy to follow. DG needs to save the O.Z. from Azkadellia's crazy antics and to prevent her from making the whole place dark and evil. The fight between good and evil is probably the only thing that stays the same as in the original version of the story. Everything else is new and exciting and modern. I really loved the ideas that the creators had and it some were very brave considering they were taking on such a classic story to begin with. The whole show is quite magical once you really get into it although this did take me the whole of the first part. After this, I still wasn't sure whether I actually liked it or not but I carried on watching and thankfully it turned out well.
If you're looking for something not very well known and a bit different to watch then Tin Man may be for you.
In 2008 a reimagining of L. Frank Braum's The Wizard Of Oz aired on the Sci-Fi channel in three parts totalling 6 hours. Just six months before this upon airing in the US this became the most-watched show on the network ever. So having heard this I hastily bought the DVD when it was released and proceeded to see what all the fuss was about. I have to say, the hype was well justified with this dark and crazed retelling of the story of Oz.
What Is It About?
Well you may be thinking that this is just a modern version of the classic film we all know and saw as children, but this most definitely is not. This is a total reimagining of the story with much darker overtones.
DG is a waitress in a small Kansas town and doesn't particularly enjoy it; she feels that she doesn't fit in there and that it isn't where she is supposed to be. She has dreams of a lady with purple eyes telling her a storm is coming, if only it were just a storm that was coming. Meanwhile the ruler of O.Z. has been warned that there is a person that could ruin her plans to harness the power of the Outer Zone's twin suns to bridge the gap between their world and the Other Side (A place you may know better as Earth).
Soldiers are sent from the Outer Zone (O.Z. get it?) to kidnap and kill DG by the evil ruler Azkadellia. Luckily for our plucky protagonist, she manages to escape in the storm but finds herself in O.Z. where she finds Glitch who has had half his brain removed (aka; Scarecrow) and Wyatt Cain (aka; Tin Man) who used to be a law enforcer in the land of O.Z. She then meets Raw, a telepath and from there with the help of other members of the Outer Zone learns that she isn't as out of place in the O.Z. than she may have previously thought changing everything she ever believed about her life and her family.
The foursome continue on through the O.Z. meeting various people and trying to stay clear of Azkadellia, whilst trying to help the poor citizens with the problems caused when a child made a simple mistake many years ago.
To say DG isn't in Kansas anymore is an understatement.
Who Is In It?
There are many weird and wonderful characters in Tin Man, including a couple of Hollywood stars you wouldn't ordinarily expect in a Sci-Fi channel show.
DG (Zooey Deschanel): A small-town waitress with big dreams, she gets a chance at excitement when she finds herself stranded in the Outer Zone. It turns out that she fits in a lot better in O.Z. than she ever did in Kansas and upon discovering why realises that she has to help save O.Z. She is the Sci-Fi channel's take on Dorothy.
Glitch (Alan Cummings): His real name is Ambrose and he was once the advisor to the queen of O.Z. However when Azkadellia took over she stole his designs for one of his best inventions and took half of his brain. Clearly the Scarecrow in this adaptation as he is looking for the rest of his brain. Hardly surprising he wants it back.
Wyatt Cain (Neal McDonough): The Tin Man in both name and body, he's a former law enforcer in the Outer Zone who dared to oppose Azkadellia. As punishment he was tortured and has been locked in an iron suit since. He has been stuck in the suit for so long that he lacks emotions and just wants revenge for what has been done to him. Understandable in the circumstances.
Raw (Raoul Trujillo): From a race of telepathic 'viewers' who have been enslaved by the evil ruler of O.Z. He and others of his kind are often used to read the minds over those that the Outer Zone's ruler seeks to destroy. He is based on the cowardly lion.
Tutor (Blu Mankuma): A shape shifter who often takes the shape of a small dog - referred to as Toto, he is also DG's old magic teacher and joins her on the group's quest to find the Emerald of the Eclipse.
Lavender Eyes (Anna Galvin): The Queen of the Outer Zone who has been imprisoned by her daughter Azkadellia. She is the woman in DG's dreams.
The Mystic Man (Richard Dreyfuss): He used to rule the Central City until Azkadellia used her magical influence and made him into her puppet.
Azkadellia (Kathleen Robertson): The villain of the piece, Azkadellia wasn't always the evil tyrant she is now but being possessed by a bad witch will do strange things to a person. She has overthrown her mother, imprisoning her in a magical jail, had the tin man locked into his suit of armour, stolen half of Glitch's brain and wants to kill DG. If anyone were the Wicked Witch of the West then it must be her.
Into The Storm: DG's simple life as a waitress/student is turned upside down when she begins having strange dreams about a woman with lavender eyes warning her of a storm. However this wasn't just any storm that was about to happen, the storm brings with it Azkadellia's soldiers who are under orders to capture and kill her. Desperate to save DG, her parents throw her into a tornado which drops her in the dark and strange land of O.Z. Here she meets Glitch, Wyatt and Raw and finds out that her parents were not what they seemed and that her true heritage is more important than she could ever have thought possible. DG is captured by Azkadellia's soldiers whilst Wyatt gets his chance to seek vengeance for the deaths of his family and his imprisonment in the metal suit, finding out that all is not lost before falling to his doom in an ice lake.
Search For The Emerald: Glitch plays the hero saving Wyatt from his impending death and once recovered they set off to rescue DG from Azkadellia's castle. Meanwhile DG is questioned by the evil Azkadellia, who finds out more about the precious Emerald of the Eclipse. After The Mystic Man gives DG information that costs him his life she is freed by a shape shifter from her childhood. With the group reunited and following The Mystic Man's advice they head South not knowing that there is a traitor in their midst. DG's magical abilities that have been dormant since she was young start to resurface as do her memories that have lain hidden for a long time, realising that the tragedies of O.Z. are all her fault.
Tin Man: The group continue heading South and the traitor is uncovered, but after walking into a trap Cain, Raw and Glitch are captured by the leader of the soldiers Zero who reveals everything about Azkadellia's evil scheme that will leave the Outer Zone in total darkness. They are freed before to much harm is done by resistance fighters headed up by someone very dear to one of the group. Meanwhile DG travels to a mausoleum where the royalty of O.Z. are buried and learns the full extent of her heritage, and upon entering the tomb of Dorothy she is given the Emerald. And they all lived happily ever after? Well not quite, things are never that easy in TV-land, and certainly not in O.Z... Azkadellia finds them and steals the emerald whilst trapping DG in the mausoleum and setting off to complete her evil plan. Using magic DG and her friends escape and get into the castle to try and stop the suns from going out. But as time is running out, will they be able to stop Azkadellia? Or will the Outer Zone be plunged into perpetual darkness? And will the group find everything they've been searching for?
Now those are some long episode summaries, but believe me when I say that isn't even half of what happens in them. Amazingly there is so much more in this three-part miniseries that I haven't covered so don't think that you will now know everything that's going to happen because you have read this - you don't!
So, Do They Save O.Z.?
You're probably wondering now, having read all of that, do they manage to save O.Z. from eternal cold and darkness. Well to find that out you will have to watch!
Why Should You Watch Tin Man?
After all that; is this a show worth watching? Well I would say yes it is, $20 million was spent on creating this adaptation and the viewing figures for the US alone tell you that this is a show to see.
For me, a girl who loved the book and rather enjoyed the film (and still does) this was a great retelling of an old story. It may not be as bright and happy as the film was but it still has the same basic story, just told on a more adult level with a much more gothic backdrop. The yellow brick road is still there, it's just that under evil's rule it is crumbling, the land of O.Z. beautiful in the original film is now decaying and dank.
The familiar characters are still there, just in slightly different guises and there are some lovely links to the well-loved original (Including DG being handed the emerald by Dorothy Gale after being transported into black and white Kansas). The characters still make me root for them as much as they did before, and though DG is a much tougher and determined version of Dorothy, she is a most welcome change - all that complaining Dorothy did in the original was rather irritating. This is the Wizard of Oz for the 21st century, with a wonderfully strong female hero, and a strong female villain.
Deep down, under the fantastic new sets and special effects that feel like magic this is still the story of a small-town girl who just wants to feel like she belongs, and in helping others she finds a place she does and discovers what is important. Tin Man could have moved completely away from this basic story and gone for something new, but it is great that they didn't. You can watch this and even though it's all new it seems somehow familiar because of this.
The casting is superb and Alan Cummings as Glitch is my favourite of all, he has always been wonderful at quirky lovable characters and he hasn't failed here. Zooey as DG was also a good choice as she wasn't particularly well-known at the time and so hadn't already been typecast by her girl next door good looks which could have seen here in something very different to this.
Tin Man is a terrific adaptation of an old classic, bringing a new look and a darker tone to the well-known story. This is rated at a 12 and I would personally recommend that this isn't suitable for anyone younger than that in general because of its dark nature, violence and disturbing images. This would be great for young teens and adults that have tired of the original film or would like to see a different take on the story, and is certainly a must for sci-fi fans as they have made this into what I would say will one day be a sci-fi classic.
This won't appeal to everyone due to the oddness of the characters and settings but much like Kingdom Hospital which I have previously reviewed those who do enjoy it will love it. It is a quirky and dark tale that seems so much deeper than the original.
Well for me this was another of those shows that after watching the first part of I went straight out and purchased it so I wouldn't have to wait for the next instalment.
The Tin Man is a meant to be a continuation of The Wonderful Wizard of OZ by L. Frank Baum.
The mini series focuses on a small town waitress called DG who is pulled through a storm to the OZ (Outer Zone) which is ruled by an evil witch, Azkadellia . While travelling through the OZ trying to find her parents DG gains three main companions.
Wyatt Cain (Neal McDonough ) an Law Enforcer, nick named Tin Man who was punished for defying Azkadellia by being locked in an Iron Suit.
Glitch (Alan Cumming) and advisor to the former ruler of the OZ who had his brain removed by Azkadellia when she came in to power.
Raw (Raoul Trujillo) a member of a telepathic race who have been enslaved by Azkadellia.
The series follows DG and her companions as they search to find the Emerald of the Eclipse (as well as solving their own personal mysteries) before Azkadellia thus preventing her from causing eternal night to fall on the OZ.
As a big fan of the original Wizard of OZ Film and the book when I first saw the trailers I was intrigued about how they were going to pull off a remake of a classic. On watching it however I found that unlike some the recent remakes this one has not tried to make it better and failed but have taken the original and modernised it but made it just enough different from the orginal to make it appealling in its own right. This series has taken the original Wizard of OZ and updated it in a modern and appealing way. Though you can draw similarities from it against the original it has been remade to freshen and revitalise the original.
I would recommend this to any fans of the original who also enjoy a lot of the newer Sci-Fi series' that have been produced as you get the best of both.
I feel this week has been rather productive. Not only have I finally fixed the wing mirror on my car, I have ordered the indicator so I am no longer turning left constantly! It has arrived and I am awaiting Friday so I have time and daylight hours to fit it. To add to this I have booked myself an all inclusive 2 week holiday to Sri Lanka in September AND found out that I can swim in the evenings at my local pool (which I started tonight!!! I'M SO FIT...excuse me while I polish off these celebrations)
Amongst this productive week I also decided to splash out on a DVD I've been wanting for a hella long time (yes, it's a word, I'm just not sure what it means) For the lovely price of £10 I bought myself "Tin Man" and preyed that it wouldn't land through the neighbours letter box. My experience of them so far is the old guy watching while I try and break my door down since I lost my keys and locked the spare set inside and him and his wife ruining sexy moments with the boyfriend by hocking what is presumably a glut ball the size of New York up morning noon and night in their bathroom that backs onto my bedroom. Do you think it would be rude to suggest a trip to the doctor to them?
To my delight, it came through my letter box. "Tin man" is a 3 part series that aired on SCI FI a couple of years ago. It is essentially a rather dark update on the goings on in our dearest OZ (as in "The Wizard of OZ").
OZ (or "The Outer Zone" or "the Oh Zee" as they now call it) has fallen into ruin. It has had a thorough dressing down from a fairy tale land into a creepy as hell nightmare world, full of crazy creatures and ruled by the evil gothic sex symbol sorceress Azkadellia with the help of her special forces the Long Coats and her flying tit monkeys. Well that's what I call them. She has some funky tattoos on her chest and when she gets real pissed, they turn into the flying monkeys. See. Tit monkeys.
---People who are, like, in it and stuff---
The cast are a bit touch and go with me. Imagine my horror when, after hating "The Happening" and its awful acting, I picked up the next DVD and there staring back at me is the wide eyed, constantly shocked, blow up doll-esq Zooey Deschanel staring back at me from the cover.
Zed Dee plays the character Dee Gee (oh how I love phonetics), the modern day Dorothy Gale, thrown into a hurricane by her parents when a bunch of Long Coats show up in our world looking for her. Apparently it's the only way to travel between the worlds.
Alan Cumming (also in x-men 2) plays Glitch the equivelant of the scarecrow. He is what they call a Zipper Head. Someone who has had their brain removed as punishment for heinous crimes and has a zipper right down the middle of his head. Cumming is amazing in this role if only for the fact he looks a tad like a wisend old drag queen and says "honey" quite a lot.
Neal McDonough (currently playing Dave in desperate housewives) is Cain, the "Tin Man" which is OZ slang for the police. He makes a fantastic entrance from a steel sarcophagus and in true Tin Man style is a heartless bastard hell bent on revenge. At least for a while.
Richard Dreyfuss is the Mystic Man, occasionally referred to as the Wizard. He has been in a grand total of nothing I have ever seen, but rather interestingly played a part in a 1987 film called Tin Men. Random. I have no feelings for him one way or another.
---Oh Em Gee Shiny goodness---
The box is a rather fabulous one, coming in a very shiny sleeve that will throw rainbow colours all over the place when you tilt it into the light. I have spent half an hour doing it so far. The description on the back is a tad too long and inaccurate for my liking (stating that DG jumps off a cliff into the storm when in fact she is pushed off the roof of her house and only jumps off a cliff later when she is being chased by some blood hungry demonic monsters)
Each part is about One and half hours long, so it may be wise to set some time aside to watch them if you want to get through all three.
---Yeah, like, Part one---
==Into the Storm==
So finally I get to talking about the episodes themselves.
Part one sees D.G. longing for another life. She is currently a waitress in a little café on a highway in the middle of nowhere. Her parents have spent her whole life telling her wonderful stories of where they grew up and plenty of fairy tales to go with it.
In the meantime, in the O.Z. Azkedellia is frantically searching for something that will rule the world (more so than she pretty much already does). Unfortunately, she sees a prophecy that a light from "the other side" will stop her. This light is DG. Swiftly she orders her minions (the long coats not the tit monkeys) to call up a storm and travel to the other side to extinguish her.
What follows is a frantic journey of discovery as DG tries to find her mother in the O.Z. helped along the way with some amazingly dark creations who are stopped in their tracks in a nice little cliff hanger that is strangely reminiscent of the haunted woods scene from the original film.
There are a lot of similarities between part 1 and the original film. Not necessarily a bad thing, but I think it might put a few people off. Personally I loved it for the much more modern take on the characters and surroundings and the strange little additions they made such as Raw (the cowardly lion character) being an empath. Thumbs up.
---like, the next part---
==Search for the Emerald==
Part 2 is apparently too much for my pile of crap computer to handle. If yours is similar I find waiting a day and trying again will get it to play.
So, part two begins and DG is mysteriously back in Kansas. The mystery is upheld for about a minute and we are shot right back into OZ. Azkadellia has DG and her Mother trapped. Azkadellias lips have taken my focus by this point. She has a talent. Her lips continue moving even when she isn't speaking. It's almost like watching a Japanese movie that's been dubbed. How odd.
On the plus side it would seem that the plot is so brilliantly conceived that I quickly looked past this. More references to the original Wizard Of Oz stories are made in this part and it soon becomes apparent that this series is set long after the original story. Some references to the original are worked into the plot so well it made me giggle when I realised what was happening.
This part deals a lot more with DG's childhood and her forgotten relationship with her sister. Throughout this part you start to see another side to the devilishly sexy Azkadellia as we delve into her childhood, taking some incredibly dark and satisfying twists. Toto even appears as a shape shifting mutt-man!
All the characters are built on tremendously in this part, making the whole story a lot more rounded and enveloping and helping me ignore the twitchy part of me that wanted to shout about Deschanel's wide eyed acting skills.
Part two takes a giant leap ahead of the first by showing that as much as you are in O.Z. you are watching a brand new story line unfold around you. By the end of part two I had to ask my flatmate to get a spatula to peel my eyes off of the screen.
---OMG like the end, you know?---
Part three begins where the second left off - with Azkadellia sending out her evil tit monkeys to find DG and her little friends too. DG well and truly uncovers her past and the witch from ancient times rears her ugly head in a rather slow, but still quite brilliant finale. I want to tell you more but, seriously, I'd ruin the fun. That and I'm lazy.
A brilliant ending to the series though I did think that they could have drawn out the end scene for a little longer than they did to get some more of the reactions from the characters. They might have thought of a better name for the episode than "conclusion" too. Overall though, I am quite happy with the episode and the series as a whole. Some truly terrifying moments, remarkable characters and marvellous performances all round. Even Deschanel wasn't entirely awful.
---Give me more or I'll, like, hit ya---
After watching the series, you may wish to indulge in the extras. Personally, I'm a little disappointed with the utter lack of extras. They give you two. I suppose that will have to do.
I'm sure we all know what a trailer is? And no, I don't mean the kind that house Jerry Springers' favourite source of income. A rather fabulous theatrical trailer awaits you here. It made me want to watch the show again. If you need to convince someone to watch it, this will come in handy. If not then...well screw you.
---Making of Tin Man---
The making of is split into a few parts but runs as one big extra giving you 24 minutes of looking round on sets, talking with the cast and crew. .
==Beyond the yellow brick road==
This part focuses mainly on the sets, which don't look to fabulous considering most of it was green screened, but you do get to listen to some nice people talk to you about how great the wizard of oz is.
==The characters of Tin Man==
It would seem that wide eyed blow up doll look on Deschanel is what she normally wears! I quite enjoyed this extra mainly for hearing Cummings and his broad Scottish accent after watching him be an American airhead for about 4 hours. I also realised that I know the woman who played Azkadellia! Kathleen Robertson! Now all I need to do is figure out where I know her from!
This part of the making of explores each individual character, giving you a bit more to bite in to and allowing you to see that Raw is actually a quite ooft-worthy male under all the make-up. Unless its Deschanel they are talking about in which case, just skip it.
==The Magic of Tin Man==
This section focuses more on the visual effects used in the film. Which is quite a lot really. More so than I originally thought, in fact. There are sequences throughout the series that are quite obviously CG but it is beautiful, so you don't care. Then there are parts that look so fabulously real you won't even realise it's not. Yay for them!
==The look of Tin Man==
More on the sets, props and costumes, and a tad more cast insight. Fabtastic.
==The Message of Tin Man==
Oh dear, I have paused the DVD in fear that they are about to ruin my fun by telling me God loves me or some such bum. Lets push play and see what they say....
Home is where the heart is and there ain't no place like it aunt em! Well that's better than The G man wanting my arse!
---Ok, I spose. *shrug*---
And so the end is near. Well, its more than near. It IS the end. The extras were far too short for my likes. I wanted MORE! As for the mini series itself I have nothing but praise (not including Deschanel). Apparently it was the most watched Mini-series in the history of the sci fi channel and was nominated for 9 Emmis (I, like the advertisers, will ignore the fact that it only actually won the award for outstanding makeup for a mini-series or movie (non-prosthetic) as it makes it sound a bit crap). I will be forcing this upon my flatmate, boyfriend, mother, brother, father and Fiona, the crazy one from work. Get your butt out there and buy it!
Having heard about a remake or updated version of the wizard of Oz, i was very excited to watch it as i had previously missed it when it was shown on SciFi. But after watching a friends DVD of Tin Man, i was very impressed and even went out and bought myself a copy so i could watch again and again. Not only does it include and revolve around the original story of the magical land of Oz, but it also adds its own interpretation to it, making it an enjoyable show to watch. With the story being broken down into three parts it is very enjoyale and easy to watch. The way they modernise all the characters eg: DG (Dorothy) and the land of Oz being known as the O.Z (Outer Zone) adds the spice and difference to make the wizard of Oz story worthy of the 21st century.
Having been cooped up with a cold for the past week I have been watching a lot of tv and dvds and so I finally got around to watching this little gem of a mini series, consisting of three episodes of around 90 minutes each (not counting the adverts breaks which obviously won't be on the dvd) and made for, and originally aired on, the Sci-Fi channel.
This reimagining of Frank L Baum's 'The Wizard Of Oz' is the story of DG (Zooey Deschanel), a girl living in nowhere-ville dreaming of travelling. But then one night her home is invaded by 'Long-Coats', there to kill her to prevent her from saving the OZ (Outer Zone) from their evil mistress, the sorceress Azkadellia (Kathleen Robertson) who is desperately seeking an emerald that will help her in her evil plan. And so, jumping into a tornado with her parents, DG escapes the attack and wakes up in the OZ where she must find the emerald before Azkadellia with the help of the friends she meets on the way; Glitch (Alan Cumming), a man with a zipper in his head from where his brain has been removed because of something he knew, once a man of great intelligence now reduced to someone who can barely remember his own name; Wyatt Cain (Neal McDonough) an ex-cop or 'tin man' looking for revenge against Zero (Callum Keith Rennie), the leader of the Long Coats, who destroyed his family; and Raw (Raoul Trujillo), a man-beast who can see things past and future with his heart.
I really enjoyed this, it was fast paced, there were some great characters and the plot was a wonderful take on the well known story, making it more sci-fi than fantasy and the world of the OZ seem a much more realistic and dangerous place. Alan Cumming was especially wonderful as the forgetful and childlike Glitch who is clearly filling the role of the Scarecrow in the original story. Kathleen Robertson and Callum Keith Rennie were also particularly good, deliciously evil and menacing throughout. The costumes and sets were all beautiful and there were some great special effects, especially for something made for television.
Overall this mini-series is well worth a watch and I am eagerly awaiting the release of the dvd which I am sure will make a worthy addition to my collection.
The DVD for the Tin Man will not be released in the UK until 15 September 2008. However, it has been shown on TV here during the last few weeks, and this is what I am reviewing.
I loved this show. It was shown on the Sci Fi Channel in three two-hour episodes, and I enjoyed every single minute. It's Oz again, but it's an Oz in the future that's a dark and scary place ruled by a wicked but beautiful witch called Azkadelia (played by Kathleen Robertson) with her evil second in command Zero (Callum Keith Rennie).
The heroine is DG (Zooey Deschanel) and her journey along the now old cracked and sometimes overgrown yellow brick road is accompanied by three companions. Glitch (Alan Cumming) who has half a brain, with a zip holding what's left of it together. Then there's Raw (Raoul Trujillo) a sort of lion/man hybrid with mind reading abilities and a noticeable lack of courage. And finally, there's Wyatt Cain (Neal McDonough), the Tin Man after whom the whole show is named. He is coldhearted and bent on revenge after years of mental torture by the evil Zero.
Mystic Man (Richard Dreyfus) and Tutor/Toto (Blu Mankuma) provide guidance and magic and help, although both have their weaknesses.
So there you have it, the triumph of good over evil, after much adversity. DG is very determined and strong, and the old theme of finding what you seek inside you applies yet again, except for the case of Glitch who really did have his brain removed, and so it's outside him.
This is one of the best shows I've seen.