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Dorothy, the protagonist of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, does not appear. Instead, the protagonist is a native of Oz, an orphan called Tip who sets out to seek his fortune along with two magically-animated companions, Jack Pumpkinhead and the Saw Horse. He encounters General Jinjur and her all-female Army of Revolt, who plan to take over Oz on the grounds that (what with the Wizard, and various Kings before him) it's about time a woman had a turn; then becomes involved in the search for Princess Ozma, the long-lost daughter of the last King of Oz, who disappeared as an infant shortly after the Wizard arrived in Oz. Tip's search, like Dorothy's, ends with the discovery that what he was looking for was under his nose the whole time, had he only known it. Princess Ozma is acclaimed the ruler of Oz, and goes on to become a major character in the rest of the series.
- The Alleged Steed: The Saw-horse, who has no joints in his legs and, at first at least, has no ears and can't follow directions, starts out as this. Later, he is revealed to be completely tireless and the fastest ride in Oz.
- Amazon Brigade: General Jinjur's Army of Revolt and Glinda's army. Played with in that Jinjur's just thought they were; the Emerald City's army wouldn't hit a girl and was less than a match for Dorothy by herself anyway. Even so, the all-female armies in this book are the most effective armies in Baum's Oz books -- all the rest are either evil and menacing but are foiled before they do much harm, e.g. the Nome King's army; or are too small to be threatening (these will include exactly one private soldier, but may have a large number of officers who do not fight), e.g. the Army of Oz. Jinjur's and Glinda's armies are the only ones that actually do what they set out to do.
- Awesome Moment of Crowning
- Completely Unnecessary Translator: Played for laughs when Jack Pumpkinhead arrives in the Emerald City. Jack, a Gillikin, claims he can't understand the Scarecrow, a Munchkin, so the Scarecrow calls in Jellia Jamb to translate. However, there's only one language in Oz, and neither of them realize they just casually discussed their inability to understand each other (Jack is The Ditz). Jellia catches on and gleefully misinterprets them until it finally hits both that they don't need translation.
- Crossing the Desert: Mombi tries this to escape Glinda. Glinda catches her.
- Cut His Heart Out with a Spoon: The penalty for damaging a palm frond is to be put to death ten times, then imprisoned for life.
- Gender Bender: Tip is really Princess Ozma, who was transformed into a boy when she was hidden away as an infant to make her harder to find.
- Giant Flyer: The Gump
- Incredibly Lame Pun: H.M. Wogglebug T.E. makes a joke about the Sawhorse, noting that if he rode him, it would be a "horse-and-buggie". Jack Pumpkinhead covers up his permanently-smiling mouth, and the Tin Woodsman threatens the Wogglebug with his axe.
- It Was with You All Along: Tip's quest to find the lost Princess Ozma requires, in the end, that they force out of the wicked witch Mombi the information that Tip is Ozma, transformed into a boy.
- Mix-and-Match Critters: The Gump, magically assembled from two couches for a body, palm leaves for wings, a broom for a tail, and the stuffed and mounted head of a dead animal.
- Moses in the Bulrushes: Ozma
- Oddly Small Organization: The entire Royal Army of Oz is one person, The Man With the Green Whiskers who first appeared in the original book.
- Pragmatic Adaptation: Inverted; it's been suggested that, following the great success of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz's stage adaptation, Baum wrote this sequel with one eye on what would look good on stage. The element that's most often singled out is the Army of Revolt, composed of good-looking women whose uniforms are described in detail. Another element that may have been affected by the stage prospects is Tip turning out to really be female, since in a stage production a young boy would be played by a woman anyway.
- Random Events Plot: Most everything that happens in the story either comes out of nowhere or has virtually no impact on aynthing that happens afterwards. Perhaps the best example is when the main characters accidentally fly out of Oz, land in a jackdaw nest, use some magical wish-granting pills to fly back to Oz, but forget to take the pills with them. What does this episode add to the story? The world may never know.
- Refugee From TV Land: The Wogglebug was originally a tiny insect, but was caught by Professor Nowital and magnified by a projector on a screen -- from which he promptly escaped.
- Retcon: Apparently there were several things the Wizard neglected to mention when he told Dorothy how he came to be in charge in Oz...
- Royal Blood: Princess Ozma
- Servile Snarker: Jellia Jamb has great fun teasing the Scarecrow.
- Straw Feminist: General Jinjur. Note this in contrast to the matriarchal army of the South, composed entirely of women, who came to overthrow her rule of the Emerald City. An army relying on your enemies not hitting girls had some serious drawbacks in retrospect. It is interesting to note that Baum's wife was herself the daughter of a prominent early feminist, Matilda Gage.
- Taken for Granite: Tip escapes the clutches of the sorceress Mombi before she can turn him into a statue.
- That Thing Is Not My Child: Tip creates a huge pumpkin-headed scarecrow man named "Jack Pumpkinhead" as a prank to frighten Mombi, who uses magic to bring it to life. This leads to Tip being very uncomfortable with the creature calling him "Father", although he does consider Jack a good friend.
- Third Law of Gender Bending: After Tip is turned back into Princess Ozma, he instantly transforms from a fairly rambunctious boy to an exceedingly girly girl. However, given the date of publication (1903) it's highly unlikely anything else would have been considered acceptable.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: General Jinjur.
Jinjur: The rest of you are not human, and therefore it will not be wicked to demolish you. The Saw-Horse and the Pumpkinhead's body I will have chopped up for kindling-wood; and the pumpkin shall be made into tarts. The Scarecrow will do nicely to start a bonfire, and the tin man can be cut into small pieces and fed to the goats. As for this immense Woggle-Bug (...) I think I will ask the cook to make green-turtle soup of you. (...) Or, if that won't do, we might use you for a Hungarian goulash, stewed and highly spiced.