A Critic's Meta-Review: 4/5

Imagine having to traverse through the trammels and trolley tracks of daily life without a heart in one’s possession. No, I do not mean half-heartedly, or with a cold heart, or even a broken heart. I am saying, picture this: you are someone who was brought into this world without ever being given a heart to begin with. It is not that your heart was broken - you never had a heart in the first place. There was never anything to break.

Alright, I think you get my point. But do you really, though? I mean, think about it - honestly think about it for a minute. How could one possibly survive without a heart? What would be pumping blood through your aorta and across all of your arteries (I am, admittedly, no expert in the field of anatomy so you will have to forgive me if that did not make any sense)? What would provide you with a framework with which to compose rhythmic bass and drum patterns? What would you have to reconfigure after being told “it’s not me; it’s definitely you”?

Indeed, such a state of being would be impossible - unless, of course, one was composed entirely of tin, or something like that.


And there you have it, folks - the origins of the tin man, one of three trusted confidants in which Dorothy placed her trust during the first incarnation of the Wizard Of Oz series. If you will recall (and if you won’t, then I shall happily do it for you), by the end of the initial story, the one that started it all, the tin man discovers that he actually had plenty of heart all along and that he just needed to be put under the right circumstances to find it within himself.

In this story, we learn how the tin man got to be made of tin, and it is a bit less (no pun intended) heartwarming, to say the least. Apparently, our reflective pal was given a cursed axe by the Wicked Witch Of The East, which caused him to chop all of his body parts off, limb by limb. Because Oz is a fantasy land, nobody can ever really die, even when they have been completely dismembered (unless they happen to be a wicked witch and a house falls on them - but, I mean, come on, how often does that hap- oh...I’m being told that this was one of the central plot points of the original story).

News to me.

The Tin Woodman of Oz by L. Frank Baum (1856-1919). Published by planksip

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