The Evil of Oz
By Ryan Fuller
Paperback, 108 pages
2015, CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
I received this book for free from Word Slinger Publicity and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. All opinions in this post are my own.
The Evil of Oz is a horror sequel to The Wizard of Oz published in graphic novel format. Dorothy must return to Oz after a tragic event and finds it has changed into a nightmare land since she left. Now she must find and destroy the evil that lurks there.
To be honest, I’ve never been a huge fan of the Wizard of Oz – I don’t dislike it, but I’m not big on the movie and haven’t read the books.
The concept of this graphic novel intrigued me, however, and the simple yet gorgeous cover art reeled me in. I have to say, my copy has a wonderful, silky cover and I loved the bold colors used throughout the book.
What I loved most was the concept – the characters we (and Dorothy) knew and loved have been corrupted and seek to destroy her and continue to wreak havoc on Oz. She’s not sure who to trust, or what caused this corruption and must battle her way through familiar places to find out what happened. I would love to see this concept developed more, like in novel format. With only about 100 pages, everything wrapped up quickly and there was very little depth or insight into what happened, and as a result, I was left wanting more.
I did have some issues with the art. I couldn’t pin down Dorothy’s age; at times she appeared to be maybe 12, other times 16. Her proportions also changed at times, leaving her with a noticeably large head on a normal body. I’m not sure if either of these effects were intentional. I also had some issues with the dialog. It seemed very dated and more Shakespearean than I expected. Dorothy and other characters would also occasionally break into rhymes, but there was no clear pattern and the inconsistency left the dialog feeling clunky. For instance, the Tin Man rhymed almost exclusively until the very end of his scene, where he shouted obscenities. It was strange and didn’t seem to fit the horror theme at all.
My issues aside, this was a fun little read and if any Oz fans are looking for a dark turn on the classic, they should check it out.