There’s a new made-for-TV miniseries called TIN MAN (basically a modern retelling of The Wizard of Oz as a Fantasy Drama) airing tonight in the Sci Fi channel. I know, I know, usual SF Channel movie = drek, with barely any plot, poor acting and crappy SFX. But this one looks pretty good, actually: they even aired a “Making of” special, which is how I found out about it. Basically, the story is about a woman name DG (note the same initials as Dorothy Gail) who finds herself transported to an universe known as the Outer Zone (OZ, get it?) by a tornado-like vortex. There she finds out that an evil (But HOT! ) sorceress is terrifying the world, and must join forces with an ex-cop (the “Tin-Man” of the title), a literally brainless guy (who looks like the Scarecrow crossed with Johnny Depp) and a Wookie-like guy (the Cowardly Lion, apparently) to defeat her. Richard Deyfuss plays The Wizard, and there’s an original angle in some form of connection between DG and the sorceress.
Normally, I look down on things like this; The Wizard of Oz is one of my all-time favorite movies, and I don’t appreciate postmodernist retellings, but this one looks well-made (the winged monkeys are particularly well-designed) so I’m going to give it a look and then report my opinion later.
Aarrrgh, I forgot the second part of the series was on last night! But there’s still part three tonight. Besides, I’m sure they will rerun it soon. (Hey, it’s the Sci Fi channel. They rerun everything to death.)
Anyway, from the first part, I have to say that I like it so far. In particular, I find the production values good (for a TV miniseries) and the acting is good too. There are a couple of things that baffle me (DG’s parents are robots? WTH? And Dorothy certainly wasn’t related to the Wicked Witch.) Another thing that surprised me was that they made major revelations in the very first part- makes you wonder what’s left for the rest.
In general, I’d say the series is more an original story (though with lots of cliches) that uses Wizard of Oz trappings. It’s certainly not a Happy Fairy Tale! But it’s fun so far, more than many other shows on TV right now (though that’s not saying much…)
I saw the first part, it was pretty interesting. I agree with Wil too, I was surprised at all the revelations that went on in it, and was wondering what they’re gonna do for the rest too. I’ve got part two recorded on DVR, so I’m about to go watch it.
Well, after seeing the complete series, I have to say that I liked it, but it wasn’t as great as I expected. Maybe it was because I felt part two dragged a bit. Also, who were the characters in the hidden city supposed to be? In OZ terms, I mean. I know that the OZ books go far beyond the one covered in the original movie, but I’m not familiar enough with the mythos to tell if they were original characters or not. (I did like the “Hindu Goddess” though. )
On the other hand, I found the original touches, like DG being the Princess of OZ or Azkadelia being possessed by the real witch, to be for the better (even if cliched.) The acting and SFX carried the story for me. The flashes to the girls’ childhood really helped to get a feeling for them and their family; nice touch (and good acting from the kids, too.) The only thing I can’t stand: they never explained how Glitch could survive, much less think, without his brain. Did he have a secondary brain? (Some animals do.) And WHY did he have to have a zipper on his head???
All in all, a good miniseries to watch, as long as you don’t expect a 100% exact recreation of the book.