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Wizard of Oz (general)
Real Name: Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkel Emmanuel Ambroise Diggs
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Bio:
The son of a prominent Omaha politician who thought he deserved a grandiose name, Oscar decided, since his remaining initials spelled "PINHEAD," that two names was enough for anybody, and left his overbearing family to join the circus. There, he would do simple stage magic and distribute leaflets advertising the circus from a hot air balloon.

One day, he was in the balloon during a tornado, which blew him to the Land of Oz, where the people who saw him land had never seen a balloon and assumed that this man must be a great Wizard, and with the name of their country painted on his balloon, destined to rule.

There was a baby named Ozma set to rule Oz, but fearing for the child's safety, Oscar placed her in the care of a powerful sorceress called Mombi, who, unbeknownst to him, had imprisoned the infant's father, Pastoria, in exchange for some magic, some of which she believed to be real. He somehow managed to use some of this stage magic to defeat the rival witches in the East and West of Oz, the latter unsuccessfully using the Winged Monkeys, who could be summoned three times per user with a Golden Cap.

Realizing that the witches would soon discover that he had no real magic, he ordered the Ozites to construct a city of marble, and, insisting that it was too bright to be seen without protective spectacles, made everyone wear green ones that convinced people that their city, which he called the Emerald City, was green. He walled himself up in an inner chamber and allowed no one to see him. Even his closest advisors, Omby Amby and Jellia Jamb, never actually saw him, but spoke to him from behind a screen. He then spread rumors that he could appear in any form that he wished.

When Dorothy Gale's house crushed the Wicked Witch of the East, he was willing to risk blowing his cover, and allowed Dorothy and her friends entrance to his palace, offering to grant their wishes only if they killed the Wicked Witch of the West. To each, he appeared in a form that would challenge them--a head to Dorothy, a winged lady to the Scarecrow, a multi-limbed, multi-eyed beast to the Tin Woodman, and a ball of fire to the Cowardly Lion.

When they did so and returned, he was unprepared, expecting that she would destroy or enslave them (which she had, in fact, done for a time). He claimed that he was everywhere, but invisible to mortal eyes, then slipped and said that he was going to seat himself on the throne. He then declined to grant their wishes, for he had no idea how, and insisted that they leave.

Toto, Dorothy's dog, smelled him and knocked over a folding screen revealing the Wizard to be a little old man that Dorothy described as a "Great and Terrible Humbug." He then showed them how he created each of the illusions with which he deceived them.

He told them to return to their rooms in the palace and that each one would be called on separate days for the fulfillment of their wishes, giving the Scarcrow a handful of bran and pins and needles in his head, the Tin Woodman a silk heart filled with sawdust in his chest, and the Cowardly Lion a bottle of an alcoholic beverage called "Courage" that the Lion would subsequently claim worked only temporarily.

For Dorothy, after several days of thought, he finally decided that the only way for her to get home to Kansas would be to take her there in his balloon. He placed the Scarecrow in charge of the city, and prepared for the ascent, but Toto got loose just as the balloon was lifting off, and, unable to return it to the ground, departed without her.

In 1906, Diggs found himself in San Francisco, and fell through a fissure created during the great earthquake. Dorothy was there visiting another uncle and his son, her cousin Zeb, and Diggs helped them persevere through an underground world of horrors before they finally reached a peak where they could go no further.

Dorothy made a sign to Ozma of Oz, who brought her to the Emerald City, then Ozma brought Diggs and the others back to the Emerald City where amends were made. Glinda invited the Wizard to be her apprentice and learn real magic, Ozma granting them to be the only two in Oz with a license to work magic, which she found makes most people unhappy.

The Wizard became well known for his black bag full of gadgetry and for the spells of true magic that he gradually learned from Glinda.

Notes:
Book appearances:

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900)
The Marvelous Land of Oz (1904)
Ozma of Oz (1907)
Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz (1908)
The Road to Oz (1909)
The Emerald City of Oz (1910)
The Patchwork Girl of Oz (1913)
Tik-Tok of Oz (1914)
The Scarecrow of Oz (1915)
Rinkitink in Oz (1916)
The Lost Princess in Oz (1917)
The Tin Woodman of Oz (1918)
The Magic of Oz (1919)
Glinda of Oz (1920)
The Royal Book of Oz (1921)
Kabumpo in Oz (1922)
The Cowardly Lion of Oz (1923)
Grampa in Oz (1924)
The Lost King of Oz (1925)
The Hungry Tiger of Oz (1926)
The Gnome King of Oz (1927)
The Giant Horse of Oz (1928)
Jack Pumpkinhead of Oz (1929)
The Yellow Knight of Oz (1930)
Pirates in Oz (1931)
The Purple Prince of Oz (1932)
Ojo in Oz (1933)
Speedy in Oz (1934)
The Wishing Horse of Oz (1935)
Captain Salt in Oz (1936)
Handy Mandy in Oz (1937)
The Silver Princess in Oz (1938)
Ozoplaning with the Wizard of Oz (1939)
The Wonder City of Oz (1940)
The Scalawagons of Oz (1941)
Lucky Bucky in Oz (1942)
The Magical Mimics in Oz (1946)
The Shaggy Man of Oz (1948)
The Hidden Valley of Oz (1951)
Merry Go Round in Oz (1963)

He is the only character to rate at least a mention in all 40 official Oz books.

First Appearance: Classics Illustrated Junior (1953) #535

Favorite Characters:
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View a chronological listing of this character's appearances

Issue Appearances:
Adventures in Oz (2006)
Classics Illustrated Junior (1953)
Dark Oz (1997)
Dorothy & The Wizard in Oz (2011)
Four Color Comics (1942)
L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz (2005)
MGM's Marvelous Wizard of Oz (1975)
Oz (1994)
The Enchanted Apples of Oz (1986)
The Ice King of Oz (1987)
The Oz-Wonderland War (1986)
The Oz/Wonderland Chronicles (2005)
The Secret Island of Oz (1986)
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (2009)

Group Affiliation(s):
None.

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