Witches -- and a Few Wizards and Warlocks
When I was very young, I knew of only two witches in TV or movies. Actually, the same movie: The Wizard of Oz. There was lovely Glinda, the Good Witch of the North, who had a lilting voice and traveled in a bubble. And there was the hideous (and green!) Wicked Witch of the West. I loved Glinda. I was terrified of the Wicked Witch, especially when she’d laugh in that ear-splitting shriek. But there was one thing that made her a little less frightening: she was in Oz. And Oz was a magical place. Not just an ordinary neighborhood such as where I lived.
Then, in 1964, witches became something quite different. Samantha Stephens came to TV on the series Bewitched. Inspired by two beautiful witches in the romantic comedy films I Married a Witch (played by Veronica Lake) and Bell, Book, and Candle (played by Kim Novak), Samantha was the girl next door. A newlywed who wanted nothing more than a normal, quiet life in the suburbs with her adored, non-magical husband Darrin. Suddenly witches weren’t exotic. They were like everyone else. They just had magic in their lives.
Of course, Hollywood didn’t drop the idea of witches as evil. The bad witches still appear in movies and on TV. Or sometimes we get a combination. Perhaps a good witch turned bad or vice versa. And as we’ve seen more witches, we’ve seen more of their male counterparts in the form or wizards or warlocks.
So this Halloween, check out some of the best, scariest, or most fun witches and wizards in movies and TV. And have a magical time.
Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971)
Bell, Book, and Candle (1958)
The Craft (1996)
Harry Potter films (2001-2011)
Hocus Pocus (1993)
Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)
The Sword in the Stone (1963)
The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Added note on Halloween morning...
After giving it some thought, I've decided to add one more television series to my list -- and I'm quite embarrassed at having forgotten it. Once Upon a Time, featuring Regina/Wicked Queen and Mr. Gold/Rumplestiltskin -- my favorite characters on the show.