Still scary after all these years


I was watching my daughter’s rehearsal of The Wizard of Oz last night at the The Children’s Theatre here in Dover, and (dork that I am) I seriously started to cry right along with Dorothy when she was trapped in the witch’s castle and wishing, oh wishing, for home. Don’t get me wrong—the teenager playing Dorothy is very good, but thinking back about it now, I’m pretty sure that it wasn’t her acting that got me going.

The truth is, I am not a fan of The Wizard of Oz film. When I was a kid, I thought it was the creepiest thing I had ever seen (the creepiest, that is, next to all those previews of 1970’s Stephen King horror adaptations; prom queen Carrie, drenched in blood—yeah, that’s what your scaredy cat seven-year-old wants to see right before she goes to bed). I’d try to watch the pre-VCR/DVD/DVR annual showing of Wizard of Oz on TV, but try as I might, I’d barely get through that scene in the forest where the witch is on the rooftop cackling her head off; I don’t know about the scarecrow, but she sure scared the stuffing out of me. Once a year I’d give it a try, I’d get to that scene, and I wouldn’t sleep for a week.

I’m not going to tell my daughter that, though. She’s a flying monkey in this children’s production, which would give me the creeps if she weren’t so darn cute. Thankfully, my son pointed out to me that the flying monkeys aren’t really bad; they just work for whoever will pay them, and if the wicked witch is their gravy train then so be it.

I know I’m in the minority here on the Oz front, but in my book, tornadoes, kidnapping, death threats, melting flesh, and mercenary monkeys do not an endearing family classic make. So if you happen to come to The Children’s Theatre production (10/24, 10/25 and 11/1), just do me this one favor: pay no attention to the Mom whimpering behind the curtain.



  1. AUNT LOIS said,

    October 20, 2009 at 2:04 pm



    • scheirmad said,

      October 20, 2009 at 4:02 pm

      Sure enough! She’s got a mask on for the monkey part, but I’m sure I can pull a few strings…

      Hope you guys are well!


  2. Lorraine said,

    October 21, 2009 at 5:36 am

    We want a picture too!

    • Cheryl said,

      October 21, 2009 at 9:53 am

      Everyone should prepare–she looks VERRRY menacing!


  3. Cheryl said,

    October 21, 2009 at 7:37 pm

    For those of you who are interested, there was a photo of flying monkey Hayley in our local paper today. You can see it at this link:

    Just flip though the pics until you see the one with the wicked witch (green face, dead giveaway). Hayley was the only flying monkey minion at the photo session–instant fame!!!


  4. Lorraine said,

    October 22, 2009 at 2:29 am

    Sorry Cheryl, that child is just too darn cute to be anything like “menacing”!

    • Cheryl said,

      October 22, 2009 at 8:47 am

      That’s why they call it acting!!

      Then again, when she’s around Jake she does have her moments!

  5. Jessie Stein said,

    October 27, 2009 at 10:34 pm

    If you think The Wizard of Oz is creepy, please don’t ever see Return to Oz, the lesser known sequel. It features a Dorothy who returns to Oz after escaping from a psychiatric experiment at mental hospital and a witch who changes heads instead of hairstyles. Speaking from my own experience as a scaredy cat seven-year-old, I do not recommend it.

    • scheirmad said,

      October 28, 2009 at 10:10 am

      Hoooo my! I had to look that one up to check that it was really real. Never heard of it. Never saw it. Not planning to. What about “psychiatric experiment” says family viewing to the movie industry, even the one circa 1985? I don’t know. Creepy indeed. I hope that you’ve managed to get over it!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: