The Travelling Companions
In most coming-of-age stories the hero is usually accompanied by friends that help him accomplish his journey. In Baum, L. Frank “The Wizard of Oz”, Dorothy meets three characters that help her find the wizard, defeat the wicked witch and return home. In this journey, every character helps her to grow up and understand why she needs a brain, a heart and courage. The journey would not have been possible without her three companions. The intelligence of the Scarecrow, the love of the Tin Man and the courage of Cowardly Lion represent three fact of Dorothy herself.
The Scarecrow was important in Dorothy’s quest because of his intelligence. At first, she met him hanging near a farm and she spoke to him. She found out that he had no self confidence because the Scarecrow thought of himself as not intelligent. Through out the story, the Scarecrow was the one who came up with bright ideas. For example, he has “been thinking what was best to be done” (49) to escape from the Kalidahs. Dorothy learned how to think of the best way to reach her destiny from the Scarecrow. For example in the China Country, she was the one who thinks and finds the way to cross the country, she says “it would be unwise for us to go any other way except due South” (148). This statement is a clear sign of her growing up.
The Tin Man was the second person she met who was sensitive. He thought he had no feelings and can’t be happy without his heart. Furthermore, we found out that he was delicate when it comes to hurting a creature. When the mice were about to get attacked by the wildcat, he felt sorry for them and helped them. The wood man said sadly that he had no heart and he was “careful to help all those who may need a friend, even if it happens to be only a mouse” (60). They were thankful to him and decided to help him to save the Cowardly Lion. His love helped them during the journey. Dorothy learned from the Tin Man how to love and help others. When Dorothy saw the beautiful princess of the China Country, she wanted to take her home with her, but when the princess told her that she would be unhappy Dorothy said that she “would not make you unhappy for all the world” (151). The Tin Wood Man taught her compassion.
Finally, she came across the Lion who was the strongest of the forest. He scared every creature around him but deep inside, he was afraid of them. He was very useful to Dorothy because of his courage that he thought he didn’t have. His roar scared and shook the whole forest. For example, when the Kalidahs came he “gave so loud and terrible a roar that Dorothy screamed and the Scarecrow fell over backwards” (49). When Dorothy reached the China Country, she was not scared of seeing this new world and those new people. She had the courage to go in and find out what these people are.
In conclusion, without her companions Dorothy would be lost and would have difficulty in completing her journey. Dorothy had the brain, the heart and courage and she could have done it alone but since she was still a young girl, she didn’t know much about life and what she has. After her journey she finally grew up.