Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Tin Woodman Shoots Up

Talking to a friend today, he pointed out that if you look at the original W. W. Denslaw illustrations to The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, you can clearly see that the Tin Woodman is shooting up. I just checked -- the entire original edition is online as images at the Library of Congress, bless 'em -- and by Cthulhu's tentacles, he's right.

Remember the scene: Dorothy and the Scarecrow find the Tin Woodman rusted still. They oil him, and he feels better; then he takes the oil can and finishes oiling himself. How does Denslaw portray this?

Here's the image from page 60:

And here's how he feels after that:

Part of the trick here is that you need to see the two pages -- on facing pages in the original edition -- together. Here's how they pair in a single image:

I don't know if Baum intended this (although my friend did point out that Baum sent his characters through a poppy field to get sleepy), but it's clear what Denslaw was doing.

Pretty wild, huh?

Unrelated Housekeeping Note: Part six of the Liberal Argument against Hillary Clinton is indeed coming. But I fear it's going to be another day or three. This pesky little thing called "real life" has gotten in the way. Fortunately, the first primaries are still four months away, and it's not like anyone's going to pick a candidate for us before then -- by declaring her "inevitable" or "unstoppable" or anything like that. Right? Right?

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