In the novels by L. Frank Baum, the origins of the Tin Man character are quite gruesome. Originally an ordinary man by the name of Nick Chopper, the Tin Woodman used to make his living chopping down trees in the forests of Oz. The Wicked Witch of the East enchanted his axe to prevent him from marrying the girl that he loved. The enchanted axe chopped off his limbs, one by one. Each time he lost a limb, Nick Chopper replaced it with a prosthetic limb made of tin. Finally, nothing was left of him but tin. However, the tinsmith who helped him, neglected to replace his heart. Once Nick Chopper was made entirely of tin, he was no longer able to love the girl he had fallen for.
In The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Dorothy befriends the Tin Woodman and he follows her to the Emerald to get a heart from The Wizard of Oz. They are joined on their adventure by the Scarecrow and the Cowardly Lion. The Tin Woodman states unequivocally that he has neither heart nor brain, but cares nothing for the loss of his brain. His desire for a heart notably contrasts with the Scarecrow’s desire for brains, reflecting a common debate between the relative importance of the mind and the emotions. As they continue in their quest, they discover the Wizard to be a “humbug” and can only provide a placebo heart made of velvet and filled with sawdust. However, this is enough to please the Tin Woodman, who, with or without a heart, was all along the most tender and emotional of Dorothy’s companions; just as the Scarecrow was the wisest and the Cowardly Lion the bravest.
The huge popularity of the books and their subsequent adaptations has meant the Tin Man is widely recognised, and therefore perfect for character parties, TV/ Movie parties, film parties, and more! Want to go as a group? Why not get together with three friends and wear The Tinman, The Scarecrow, The Cowardly Lion and Dorothy? Accessorize the Tin Man Costume with a Heart Clock and Axe.