In the latter part of Dorothy and the Wizard, Oz gets to explain himself to Princess Ozma, the very child he had stolen (though no one has the effrontery to bring that up here):
“One day my balloon ran away with me and brought me across the deserts to this beautiful country. When the people saw me come from the sky they naturally thought me some superior creature, and bowed down before me. I told them I was a Wizard, and showed them some easy tricks that amazed them; and when they saw the initials [O.Z.] painted on the balloon they called me Oz.”Some of this history is reflected in the new movie, Oz the Great and Powerful:
“Now I begin to understand,” said the Princess, smiling.
“At that time,” continued the Wizard, busily eating his soup while talking, “there were four separate countries in this Land, each one of the four being ruled by a Witch. But the people thought my power was greater than that of the Witches; and perhaps the Witches thought so too, for they never dared oppose me. I ordered the Emerald City to be built just where the four countries cornered together, and when it was completed I announced myself the Ruler of the Land of Oz, which included all the four countries of the Munchkins, the Gillikins, the Winkies and the Quadlings. Over this Land I ruled in peace for many years, until I grew old and longed to see my native city once again. So when Dorothy was first blown to this place by a cyclone I arranged to go away with her in a balloon; but the balloon escaped too soon and carried me back alone. . . .”
“That is quite a history,” said Ozma; “but there is a little more history about the Land of Oz that you do not seem to understand—perhaps for the reason that no one ever told it you. Many years before you came here this Land was united under one Ruler, as it is now, and the Ruler’s name was always ‘Oz,’ which means in our language ‘Great and Good’; or, if the Ruler happened to be a woman, her name was always ‘Ozma.’ But once upon a time four Witches leagued together to depose the king and rule the four parts of the kingdom themselves; so when the Ruler, my grandfather, was hunting one day, one Wicked Witch named Mombi stole him and carried him away, keeping him a close prisoner. Then the Witches divided up the kingdom, and ruled the four parts of it until you came here. That was why the people were so glad to see you, and why they thought from your initials that you were their rightful ruler.”
“But, at that time,” said the Wizard, thoughtfully, “there were two Good Witches and two Wicked Witches ruling in the land.”
“Yes,” replied Ozma, “because a good Witch had conquered Mombi in the North and Glinda the Good had conquered the evil Witch in the South. But Mombi was still my grandfather’s jailor, and afterward my father’s jailor. When I was born she transformed me into a boy, hoping that no one would ever recognize me and know that I was the rightful Princess of the Land of Oz. But I escaped from her and am now the Ruler of my people.”
“I am very glad of that,” said the Wizard, “and hope you will consider me one of your most faithful and devoted subjects.”
“We owe a great deal to the Wonderful Wizard,” continued the Princess, “for it was you who built this splendid Emerald City.”
“Your people built it,” he answered. “I only bossed the job, as we say in Omaha.”
- the Wizard’s full name, with its embarrassing later initials spelling out “PINHEAD.”
- the assumption that the Wizard must be the land’s savior if he comes from the sky in a balloon bearing the letters OZ.
- the notion that the Wizard landed in the midst of a fight among the land’s witches.
However, in the new movie the Emerald City is already built, and green instead of made so by green glasses—all the better to bring up memories of the city in the 1939 MGM movie.