Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Best of 2008 Pt. 2

Wicked’s 5th anniversary was celebrated by fans all over the country. Barnes and Noble Booksellers, far from the glare of Broadway marquees, carried a nice selection of merchandise. The tote bags, calendars, and cookies were especially popular. Tote bags of a different design (shown below) were given to store managers.

The Wicked Around the World in One Short Day souvenir program is packed with photos from Broadway, the North American Tour, Chicago, Los Angeles, London, Tokyo, Stuttgart, and Melbourne. Also included are costume designs, quotes from Wicked’s design team, and a letter from Stephen Schwartz.

For Good is the last of the Wicked glitter globes. Since so many people connected with this moving song, the globe would make a spectacular gift for that special person who has changed you for good.

Defying Gravity: The Creative Career of Stephen Schwartz from Godspell to Wicked
by Carol de Giere is as the title suggests a retrospective of Stephen Schwartz’s professional life with heavy emphasis on Wicked and gives invaluable insight into the creative process. After all the struggle and strife it took to bring Wicked to the stage, I can appreciate the show ten times more and it’s always wonderful to see hard work so richly rewarded. This book is a must read for creative people especially.

And lastly, the perfume expected before Christmas, is now ready to order in the Ozdust Boutique. After all, no one likes a stinky witch. (I know the Wicked die hards will get that!)

I’ll Get You My Pretty captures the Wicked Witch of the West striking a fiendish pose over her crystal ball as Dorothy and friends cower below. Bradford Exchange’s first piece in the Journey to Oz Collection stands at 14” tall.

L. Frank Baum’s endearing characters are portrayed by the equally endearing Charming Tails critters. The Squashville base very cleverly represents the Emerald City complete with corn kernel yellow brick road. Who can resist adorable, furry forest creatures?

“If this yellow brick road goes on much further we’ll never get anywhere near that Piggin’ rainbow, never mind over it!”
The Wizard of Oz Piggin makes me smile every time I look at it. That much amusement deserves to be on a best of list.

Tarina Tarantino’s anime inspired Wizard of Oz creations will accessorize your Oz wardrobe with pizzazz and girlish elegance. This jewelry was only available for the 2008 holiday season. Many of the pieces are hard to find in boutiques and have sold out rather quickly.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz comic series from Marvel received lots of press and comic fans are very familiar with the work of Skottie Young and Eric Shanower so early buzz was very positive. To tantalize fans even more, Marvel issued free sketchbooks.

Issue 1 was given multiple covers by Skottie Young, Eric Shanower, and J. Scott Campbell. The Skottie Young cover was also sold as a 24 x 36 poster.

The first print run has sold out and the first issue will be released with yet another cover on February 11. Issue 2 has sold out as well and will have an alternate cover with its second print run.

This adaptation is garnering rave reviews and serves as an excellent introduction for those unfamiliar with Baum’s original story. Reviewer Doug Zawisza of Comic Book Resources said it best when he referred to these comics as “a love letter to Baum.”