The Oz Kids
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|The Oz Kids|
|Also known as||Little Wizard Stories|
|Created by||Willard Carroll|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||26|
Thomas L. Wilhite
|Running time||23 minutes (per episode)|
40–89 minutes (per VHS)
|Production company(s)||Hyperion Animation|
Canal + D.A.
Wang Film Productions
|Original network||ABC (1996)|
|Picture format||480i (4:3 SDTV)|
|Audio format||Dolby Surround|
|Original release||September 14– November 9, 1996|
The Oz Kids is an American animated fantasy comedy-drama television series produced by Hyperion Animation based on The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum's classic children's novel, and its various sequels, and was first broadcast on September 14, 1996 on ABC.
The two main characters of this series are both human: Dot and Neddie (the children of Dorothy and Zeb). The minor characters are Boris and Bela (the children of the Cowardly Lion), Tin Boy (the son of the Tin Woodman), Scarecrow Jr. (the son of the original Scarecrow), Jack Pumpkinhead, Jr. (son of the original Jack Pumpkinhead), Frank, (the son of the Wizard), and Andrea, daughter of Glinda.
Similar to series like Muppet Babies, the faces of the grown-ups (except Rick) are never shown.
The show's opening monologue is: "Hi, my name is Dot Hugson, I'm 8 years old. I live in a farm in Kansas in the countryside. I'm a farmgirl. My favorite habit is to play with my dog Toto, my brother Neddie and my farm animals, riding horses, hanging out with boys and having fun! I was born on June 21st, that's about it. It began on a bright, summer day, Neddie and I are happily spent our childhood in my farmhouse. But suddenly, my family, Toto, Neddie and I were caught up in a tornado and carried away! And then, when we woke up, I discover the magical Land of Oz, my very own magical world! Oh well, I guess everything will be okay."
- Dot Hugson (voiced by Julianne Michelle): Dorothy and Zeb's tomboyish 8-year-old daughter, and Neddie's fun-loving older sister. She is a cute and energetic young farmgirl from rural Kansas and the leader of the Oz Kids. She is fearless and level-headed when in a dangerous situation, able to analyze the options and act accordingly, and consistently triumphs with imagination. Dot's parents are Dorothy Gale and Zebediah Hugson. Dorothy first came to Oz as a young girl. Her adventures were recounted in The Wizard of Oz. As an adult, Dorothy married her cousin, Zeb Hugson and eventually had two children, Dot and Neddie. On a summer day, Dot has spent her entire childhood in the Kansas farmhouse. She enjoys hanging out with boys, riding horses, playing pranks, daydreaming and having fun. That is, until Dot, Neddie and their family are picked up by the tornado and magically transported to Oz. Although she is happy, sweet and well-adjusted, she yearns to learn more about the outside world. Dot instigates many of the trips beyond Oz. After each adventure with her friends, however, she is very happy to return to Oz, to her home. She is very protective of her younger brother, Neddie. She gains her Magic Belt that gives her magical powers. Fair skinned with freckles, Dot has messy brown hair tied back into two pigtails with blue bows and wears a white blouse with short, puffy sleeves, a sleeveless blue dress, white bloomers, white socks, and black Mary Jane shoes. Before the beginning of each episode of the series, Dot narrates the monologue about she, Neddie and her family transported to Oz, after they're caught up in the tornado.
- Neddie Hugson (voiced by Eric Lloyd): She is Dorothy and Zeb's 5-year-old son and Dot's charming little brother. Young farmboy Neddie shares many of his lovely sister's characteristics, he is inquisitive and energetic, but his lack of savvy often gets him into trouble. Neddie is trusting (sometimes too trusting) and is easily impressionable. Neddie's personality is in a constant state of evolution. Neddie is often in a quandary as to what is the proper route of action but, through his sister's guidance, and his own internal system of weighing right and wrong, he ultimately always acts judiciously.
- Toto Jr. (voiced by Frank Welker): She is Dot and Neddie's black Cairn Terrier, named after Dorothy's dog.
- Scarecrow, Jr. (voiced by Jonathan Taylor Thomas): He is the son of the Scarecrow who first encountered Dorothy in a corn field and, desiring a brain more than anything, was given one by the Wizard of Oz. The Scarecrow now rules the Emerald City. Unlike his father at this age, Scarecrow Jr. is overly confident of his intellect, as he believes as he always has an answer for everything. Scarecrow Jr. is something of a "boy genius", but his intellect is more advanced than his emotions. He can be very childish when he doesn't get his own way or when he believes that his friends are not listening to him. Scarecrow Jr. analyzes every situation carefully and always has a plan of action. Often, however, Scarecrow Jr. is not open to the ideas or opinions of others, he is something of a "know-it-all." Scarecrow Jr.'s intractability results in humorous conflict with his friends, many of his ideas backfire. Scarecrow Jr. discovers that his ideas are best implemented and is at his most successful when he is a team-player.
- Tin "Nickie" Boy (voiced by Benjamin Salisbury): He is the son of the Tin Woodman who met Dorothy on the road to Oz and was given a heart by the Wizard of Oz. The Tin Woodman rules the Winkie Country, west of Emerald City. Nickie is particularly good with his hands—he has a decidedly mechanical nature. He can construct and/or fix almost anything. Nickie is a very emotional character, he empathizes, often in the extreme, with the problems of others. Nickie is very trusting, he looks for the good in everyone, and is often exploited because of it.
- Boris and Bela (voiced by Bradley Pierce (Boris) and Shayna Fox (Bela): They are lion cubs, the children of the once-Cowardly Lion. The Cowardly Lion rules the kingdom to the south of Emerald City, Quadling Country. Genetically, Boris and Bela are twins but they couldn't be more different in personality.
- Boris is very shy and gentle, easily intimidated and frightened. Bela's little brother. When pushed to the limit, however, Boris always comes through. Boris often surprises his more aggressive sister, and himself, with his courage. Boris likes music and is constantly whistling or humming, often seeming to be lost in daydreams.
- Bela is a very aggressive, very vocal lion cub, she can be something of a brat and a bully. Boris's big sister. Bela always wants to be in charge, and thinks that her way is best, but she is often shown-up by her friends. Bela tries to project a certain air of superiority but, underneath, she has the same insecurities as other children of her age. Bela's bravura gets her into trouble, her lack of experience often resulting in her being unable to pull herself out of it. Bela is often embarrassed by the affection she feels for others, particularly Boris, and has trouble expressing her feelings.
- Jack Pumpkinhead, Jr. (voiced by Aaron Michael Metchik): He is the son of his namesake, his father is a gentle elder of Emerald City who serves beside the Scarecrow. Jack is a somewhat fragile young man and is very fastidious, he doesn't like to soil his hands or his clothes. Jack's obsession with cleanliness borders upon the charmingly neurotic and, of course, through circumstances, he often gets dirtier than any of his friends. He often surprises his friends with his solid solutions to the problems which confront them.
- Frank (voiced by Alex Zuckerman): He is the son of the Wizard of Oz. His father, who now lives in Oz and works closely with the Scarecrow, is a widower. Frank was born outside of Oz and, at 10, is the oldest of the children. Frank is very much his father's son, blustery and something of a charlatan. Frank is the most eager to embark upon the kids' many exciting, and potentially-dangerous, excursions. Frank has scientist learnings, he is an inventor with an invention for almost any occasion. Of all the children in Oz, Frank most desires to return, permanently, to the real world. Once there, however, most of his experiences make him yearn for home. Frank straddles the fence between desiring the security of home, Oz, and wanting to strike out on his own.
- Andrea (voiced by Shay Astar): She is the daughter of Glinda, the Good Witch of the South. Andrea is quite beautiful, gentle and very aware of it. Andrea is not a witch but is a character always in conflict—she has magic abilities but isn't always certain how best to use them. Andrea is confident of her powers and likes to use them to her advantage. She is the least adept socially of the group and, often, she feels excluded from their activities. When she feels excluded, she often retaliates with some sort of magical prank. Andrea is a troublemaker but, at heart, really only wants to feel included. When pressed, Andrea is able to use her magic to help the group out of a mix-up—a mix-up which, more likely than not, she was the cause of. Her outfit is similar to Princess Ozma. Unlike Dot Hugson, a tomboyish farmgirl who loves hanging out with boys and having fun, Andrea is a girly witch, who enjoys cleaning, doing magic tricks and anything else girly. Relies more on her magic than her brains, but when she can't resort to her wand, she puts her mind to work.
- Dorothy Gale Hugson (voiced by Erika Schickel): Dot and Neddie's mother and Zeb's wife.
- Zeb Hugson (voiced by Ross Maplettoft): Dot and Neddie's father and Dorothy's husband.
- Scarecrow, Sr. (voiced by Andy Milder): Scarecrow, Jr.'s father.
- Tin Woodman (voiced by Steve Stoliar): Tin Boy's father.
- Cowardly Lion: Boris and Bela's father.
- Jack Pumpkinhead, Sr. (voiced by Ross Maplettoft): Jack, Jr.'s father.
- The Wizard of Oz: Frank's father.
- Glinda the Good Witch (voiced by Erika Schickel): Andrea's mother.
- Patchwork Girl (voiced by Lori Alan): Has numerous infant patchwork kids, including a baby girl, Betty.
- Betty: Patchwork Girl's baby daughter.
- Rick (voiced by Lawrence Tierney (1996) and James Keane (1997)): When first encountered, Rick is a homeless man living on the streets of Manhattan. He comes to the aid of the Oz children and they ask him to return to Oz with them. Once there, Rick finds the home, and friends, he has always desired. Rick is a man the world has treated unkindly but his response, in return, has never been one of anger or bitterness. He has always felt himself an outsider, until he came to Oz. Rick serves as a sort of advisor to the Scarecrow, he is very adept at solving disputes between citizens. Rick is very childlike and, because of this, is able to easily enter a child's world. Of all the adults in Oz, Rick feels the closest kinship with the children, he is often included in activities that, normally, adults would be excluded from or have little interest in. Rick is very grateful to the children for his new home and position, and is always eager to lend a hand in making their lives more enjoyable. Rick is quite resourceful whenever he finds the children in any sort of danger, he will come to their aid with great vigor.
- Santa Claus (voiced by Marc Allen Lewis): A man who delivers presents on Christmas for boys and girls every year. He is kidnapped by two oggs along with Boris. So one of Santa's elves and the Oz Kids went to rescue them. The Oz Kids told him to come celebrate in the Land of Oz. When Santa arrived in Oz everyone celebrates and at the end he went home to deliver Christmas presents for all little boys and girls.
- Ork (voiced by Peter MacNicol)
- Toby (voiced by Jarrett Lennon): A young flying monkey.
- Gumpette (voiced by Jason Renfro): A descendant of the Gump, the kids often use him to fly because the Gump has left for a dentist appointment. The Gumpette has a Pat Buttram-sounding voice.
- Mombi (voiced by Darlene Cornley) is a bad witch who was banished for years and came back. She is trying to take over the land of Oz and stole Dot's magic belt so she can have everything she wants. But at the end she drank the forbidden water and can't remember everything. So the Oz Kids told her that she is a kind lady who loves children and lives in a wonderful castle. And so she became friends with the children.
- Otto (voiced by Chauncey Leopardi) is the son of the Nome King. His father once tried to take over Oz but was outwitted by Dorothy and her companions and banished to an underground world below Oz. Otto desires vengeance for what he sees as wrongs done to his father by the Oz establishment. Otto lives in the underground caves and is told repeatedly by his father not to venture out or he's going to be grounded—advice he usually ignores. He slinks out on many occasions to cause as much trouble for the other children of Oz as possible. Otto often tries to turn the children against each other and is particularly interested in convincing Andrea to team up with him. Otto is usually outwitted in his attempts to wreak havoc but he always has another plan-of-attack waiting in the wings.
- Steve Stoliar – Hammerhead #1, Hammerhead #3, Joe, Wizard, George the Bear, Husband, & Pilot
- Lori Alan – Aunt Scraps, Mother, and Wife
- Lacey Chabert – Merla
- Scott McAfee – Scarecrow, Jr. (1996–1997 and singing voice only in Christmas in Oz)
- Erika Schickel – Mother Crab and Mouse Queen
- Marc Allen Lewis – The Nome King, Hammerhead #2, Sea Dragon, and King Anko
- Andy Milder – Tommy Qwickstep, Snicklefritz, Vendor, Barnabas, Gwig, Octopus, and Yell-Maker
- Remy Ryan – Angie and Harriet
- Jarrett Lennon – Munchkin #1, Munchkin #3, Fred, Dragonettes, Pinkie the Bear, Pig, Sacho, and Toby the Flying Monkey
- Ross Maplettoft – Zog, Monkey King, Woozy, Guards, and Jack Pumpkinhead Sr.
- Claudia Christian – Queen Aquarine
- Art Chudabala – Wu Chen
- Johnathan Charles Kaplan – Monkey Prince and Freddie
- Ashely Malinger – Daughter and Clia
- Billy Mumy – Sam
- La Crystal Cooke – Henna
- Brian Ito – Hiro
- Miko Hughes – Teddy Bear
- Gabrielle Boni – Munchkin #2
- Michael Cade – Dungy
- John Link Graney – Billy
- Gavin Harrison – Crusty
- Frank Welker – Toto 2, Kalidahs (in The Nome Prince and the Magic Belt) and Wolf-fish (in Journey Beneath the Sea) (uncredited)
The Oz Kids VHSs
|1||Toto, Lost in New York||Andrea, daughter of Glinda, who dresses like Ozma, accidentally sends Toto 2 to New York in a hot air balloon made by Frank. 8-year-old Kansas farm girl Dot Hugson, the leader of the Oz Kids, her 5-year-old brother Neddie Hugson and the other kids must follow the course set by Frank's computer to take them to him. When they arrive, their balloon is trashed, and they meet Rick, a homeless man who has adopted Toto. The strange appearance of some of the kids keeps plans to return from going smoothly, but are affected much more so by a clash of cultures.||September 14, 1996 (TV)|
October 1, 1996 (VHS)
|2||The Nome Prince and the Magic Belt||Prince Otto finds one of Nome King's 1908 tunnels under Oz to the Emerald City. Boris accidentally opens a box that holds Dot's beloved magic belt. While the kids try to keep their parents from finding out what happened, Otto steals the belt and turns all of the Oz Kids (except Dot) into glass figurines. It's up to Dot to save her friends, get her Magic Belt back, and get back to the Emerald City before their parents find out!||September 21, 1996 (TV)|
October 1, 1996 (VHS)
|3||Underground Adventure||An earthquake stirs up yet another adventure for Dot, Neddie and the Oz Kids. What begins as an innocent bus trip for Frank (the Wizard's son) turns into a wild underground ride for all the kids as they encounter dragonettes, merry-go-round mountains, an enormous teddy bear and more!
Note: This is the only time Frank has a lead role.
|September 28, 1996 (TV)|
February 18, 1997 (VHS)
|4||Who Stole Santa?||The Oz Kids and their new buddy, the elf Wisk, try to find St. Nick, who has been kidnapped. Can they find Santa before Christmas, which will arrive in just a few weeks?||October 5, 1996 (TV)|
October 1, 1996 (VHS)
|5||Christmas in Oz||After the events of Who Stole Santa?, the Oz Kids' names are not included on the invite list for the upcoming Christmas celebration, Andrea and Otto try to teach the other party-goers a lesson. But will their plan backfire?
Note: A sequel to Who Stole Santa. Christmas in Oz is also released on DVD. The characters from The Brave Little Toaster, The Brave Little Toaster Goes to Mars and The Brave Little Toaster to the Rescue make a cameo in this episode.
|October 12, 1996 (TV)|
October 1, 1996 (VHS)
|6||The Monkey Prince||After reading one of Dot's fairy tales, Neddie programs the computer to take himself and Toto Jr. to China. Once there, they are met by the spoiled Monkey Prince who steals the computer. Unless Dot and the other Oz Kids can find them, Neddie and Toto Jr. will never get back to Emerald City, but it was all in a dream.
Note: This is the first time Neddie has a lead role.
|October 19, 1996 (TV)|
February 18, 1997 (VHS)
|7||Journey Beneath the Sea||Jack Pumpkinhead, a pal of the Oz Kids, who wants to take a boat ride with all of his friends. During the ride, the boat begins to sink and Jack and the Oz Kids enter the water. There they discover two mermaids who take them on a magical and adventurous underwater excursion. When Zog and the sea devils try to ruin their fun, the adventure gets more wild and exciting than Dot, Neddie and the Oz Kids ever expected.||October 26, 1996 (TV)|
March 11, 1997 (VHS)
|8||Virtual Oz||Prince Otto has no friends, so he decides to force Dot and the Oz Kids into a virtual reality computer game presented to them at Scraps's baby shower. Unfortunately, Betty, the patchwork baby gets into the game and overflows the number of players, trapping them in a deteriorating program from which they have little chance of escape. Otto had no wish to actually harm them, and must try to get them out.||November 2, 1996 (TV)|
October 1, 1996 (VHS)
|9||The Return of Mombi||Mombi, an evil witch, has returned to Emerald City, kidnapping the Oz adults, good witch Glinda and the Nome King! Now it's up to Dot, Neddie and the Oz Kids to save Oz from Mombi's dark powers.
||November 9, 1996 (TV)|
February 18, 1997 (VHS)
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