Issue by Issue – Oz #12

Writers – Stuart Kerr, Ralph Griffith
Artist – Bill Bryan
Letters – Susan Dorne

Ozma and Wogglebug are currently making their way across the country, trying to drum up support for their war against the Nome King. They make their way to Winkie Land where the Tin Woodman used to rule and it is there they meet the new ruler of both Winkies and robots – Johnny Doit, an old friend. Thankfully, this meeting goes alright and Johnny agrees to help in any way possible for the Queen and he also pledges to help rebuild Tik Tok though he may not be the same Tik Tok he once was when all is said and done. That being said, Prince Quonto will not bring the Quadlings into a fight that they may or may not win. At the moment, they have no quarrel with the Nome King and he has none with them and so it is with a bit of a broken heart that Ozma leaves their kingdom, not realizing that some might think differently than her. Elsewhere, Dorothy is having a hard time accepting her new lot in life, having lost ten years and not even being aware of it. As for Peter, he is more concerned with trying to escape and while doing so with Dorothy, the two run into some goblins who mean to make short work of the two. As it is, Peter is not having such a great day, what with almost being tortured by Mombi or killed or worse and so these goblins, as good as they are with their blades, are no match for a very miffed human. Stuart Kerr and Ralph Griffith keep things moving along on multiple fronts, each thread moving on its own and yet inextricably tied to the other, all expected to merge at some point and when they do, readers can definitely expect some exciting stuff given what has happened so far. They continue on with the Nome King who is still raging over his escaped prisoners and blames Mombi for all of it and she too is now out for blood, so long as hers remains where it is. So it is that Mombi has plans in the making and by the end of the book when the Freedom Fighters who now include Lion, Tin Man and Scarecrow among their number finally find a way back into the castle within the Emerald City, she is there waiting for them, leaving the book on a cliffhanger. This issue, with some stupendous artwork by the ever-great Bill Bryan, is another nail-biter, one that makes the reader want to keep reading long after it is over which is a testament to just how good a job these creators manage to do on this title. It will be interesting to see if Mombi can defeat all of these heroes gathered together given that they have no magic on their side at the moment but they have been in worse situations and survived those, so anything is possible. Great stuff all around.

4 out of 5

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