Tag Archives: wendy froud

6. Wendy Froud & Yoda [SF Women of the 20th Century]

Froud, Brian, Wendy's dollsWendy Froud is a celebrated dollmaker, puppeteer and artist. She’s primarily known and recognised for her fantasy work, including puppetry created for several Henson productions, including The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth. Her work has been featured in several books by Terri Windling, and her solo book The Art of Wendy Froud was published by Imaginosis in 2006.

Wendy came to mind when I first thought about writing these posts, because she’s an artist who works in three dimensions, and also because being married to a famous artist, Brian Froud, often means that she gets mentioned in the field as an ‘and’ instead of as a creator in her own right.

Hmm, I thought, I’d love to write about her work in Labyrinth, but that’s fantasy. Should I include her anyway, given that I’ve just been listening to a podcast talking about how women who write fantasy get excluded from conversations about science fiction, and men who write fantasy don’t?
Sure, or I could do a bit of research and see if she’s contributed to any science fictional art project…


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The Power of Hoodoo, Who Do? You do!

Emily Asher-Perrin on Tor.com wrote a lovely post about the 25th anniversary of Labyrinth, one of my all time favourite films! I think she pretty much sums it up with “they don’t make films like that any more.”

It was years before I rewatched Labyrinth after seeing it in the cinema, but I had a graphic novel version of it which I pored over repeatedly.

I also had the soundtrack. This was probably the first soundtrack to a movie that I ever owned, until Beauty and the Beast came along many years later. I listened to it over and over, despite the fact that much of the music is quite chillingly surrealist. I still think it’s one of the best all time movie soundtracks, completely cohesive. It’s also I think the only movie soundtrack I have ever bought in more than one format.

Okay, apart from Beauty and the Beast. But I really do need to get hold of Little Shop of Horrors on something other than audio cassette…

The first outfit I bought for my daughter (the only outfit I bought before she was born) was a red striped suit, like Toby wore in the movie. I did not actually want her to be stolen by the goblins, but it was a really cute outfit.

I cannot hear any criticism of Labyrinth. Even the cheesy bits are awesome. It is a truly magical piece of work, from beginning to end. Performances, design, script, everything. Except the 30 seconds at the beginning with the stepmother, who cannot act.

One of the greatest joys of my life is that my daughter loves this movie. Another joy is that my younger daughter is yet to experience it. We have that to look forward to! For all the marvellous special effects they can conjure up these days, no one has yet produced a fantasy movie to match Labyrinth for design, character, story, concept, music design and heart.

So thank you Jim Henson, Brian Froud, Wendy Froud, Jennifer Connelly, David Bowie, and everyone else who made this movie. I loved it before it was a cult classic. But it makes me extra happy that it has aged so well, and that it’s still so watchable today.