- Study Questions
- Madame Morrible
- The Wizard
- Dorothy and her Companions
- Dr. Dillamond
- Princess Nastoya
- Sarima's Kids: Manek, Irji, and Nor
- Sarima's Sisters
- Ama Clutch
- Yackle and the Dwarf
- Glinda's Friends: Pfannee, Milla, and Shenshen
- Doctor Nikidik
- Oatsie Manglehand
- Miss Greyling
- Best of the Web
Meet the Cast
"Who are you?" asks the Wizard's giant green head in The Wizard of Oz.The Wicked Witch of the West. Elphaba Thropp. Elphie. Auntie Guest. Auntie Witch. Fabala. Fae.We'd like to suggest that all of...
The Good WitchIn our collective consciousness, saturated as it is by exposure to the 1939 movie, Glinda and the Wicked Witch are polar opposites – one is "good," the other is "wicked." But in...
"That Nessa – she really brought the house down"In the lore of Oz, Nessarose hasn't always had an actual name (like her older sister). She's the Wicked Witch of the East, and she's a pair of...
Foreign ExchangeFiyero is only featured heavily in Volume 3, but his presence dominates the entire latter half of the book. He plays the all-important role of love interest to the lead character, b...
The first times we hear Sarima mentioned, it's in rather negative terms, from Fiyero:To be sure, Sarima would be in her winter doldrums (as distinct from her spring moods, her summer ennui, and her...
Father figures play a big role in the novel. Frex is one of the only fathers we actually see being a father. (Fiyero never has any in-text interaction with his kids, and Boq has very brief scenes w...
In many ways, the fabulous floozy and boozy mom is the book's most realistic character. Things are messy and never romanticized with her. Melena challenges conventional ideas of marriage, fidelity,...
Nanny is always just Nanny. She never has a name, and she never seems to have an identity outside of "nannying" the various Thropp children. But Nanny is doing a lot more in this story than just pl...
We really do adore Boq. If only he and Elphaba had continued hanging out in middle age. It would have been entertaining and probably beneficial for Elphaba.In a lot of ways, Boq is Elphaba's best f...
The character of Madame Morrible is like the Voldemort of Wicked – she's the really, really obviously evil character. Not only is she named with all the subtlety of an anvil, she is also one...
He is the book's main villain, but the Wizard is also a kind of sympathetic character, at least in Elphaba's vision-quest, universe-hopping, drug-induced dreams. In these visions, the Wizard is a k...
Dorothy and her Companions
This Dorothy is definitely not Judy Garland, or even the wide-eyed child of Baum's novels. This Dorothy is in way, way over her head, and she is painfully aware of the fact. But the girl only backe...
Dr. Dillamond, our favorite Goat, is the prime representative of Animals in the book. He gets very little air time, so to speak, but he's a huge influence in Elphaba's life. He's actually a bit lik...
Princess Nastoya is, surprisingly, an Elephant in disguise. We have to ask why she got to go undercover as a Princess while Elphaba had to go undercover as a Witch – seems like a crap deal th...
Really, we'd suggest reading the sequel to this book, Son of a Witch, if you want the full measure of Liir's character and are interested in how he turns out.Here, Liir is a sad, pudgy child. He's...
Sarima's Kids: Manek, Irji, and Nor
Sarima's two sons are kind of jerks. Manek especially is a serial killer in the making. He cruelly tortures Liir, and we can't help but feeling relieved when he's killed. After nearly killing his h...
Sarima's sisters never get names: they are either referred to as numbers (in the order of their respective births) or collectively. Even Sarima doesn't bother with their names, which may help to fu...
Ama Clutch is like a sweet counterpart to Nanny. Rather than gossip about sex with her young charges, she lectures them about chatting with boys while unchaperoned. Aside from giving us a different...
Yackle and the Dwarf
We have to admit that we have a hard time analyzing these two characters. Yackle and the Dwarf are hands-down the two most mysterious characters in the book. We still don't know what's up with them...
Glinda's Friends: Pfannee, Milla, and Shenshen
Galinda really was hanging around the "wrong crowd" when we first met her. Her catty, snotty, superficial friends fueled those unfortunate qualities in her. They all seemed to have a sort of symbio...
Avaric is the classic spoiled rich boy, straight out of an '80s teen movie. Even worse is that he actually stays good looking and successful later in life. Yeah, we know.So what's he doing in this...
Shell, Elphaba's little brother, barely appears in the novel, which is really significant. He only shows up in one scene at the end, where he's checking on a sleeping Frex (5.18.5). The rest of the...
Madame Morrible's robot friend/butler is often up to no good, and he (it?) is the one who murders Doctor Dillamond. What's interesting is that we don't really blame him for the deed – we blam...
Dillamond's replacement is truly awful, a heartless, uncaring scientist. The scene where he brings in a defenseless Lion cub for a morally questionable academic experiment is particularly uncomfort...
Oatsie is the guide the Maunts hire to take Elphaba out to the Vinkus region. She seems very spunky and funny, and it's through her that we get some insight into how Elphaba has changed since we've...
Miss Greyling is the sorcery teacher at Shiz. She's very young and overly enthusiastic, but it's under her tutelage that Glinda starts developing her own considerable talent in sorcery. Miss Greyli...