The Complete Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, Leah Moore, John Reppion (art: Erica Awano). Published by Dynamite Entertainment on April 19, 2016. Buy on Amazon (e-book, paperback, hardcover)
I received a free copy via NetGallery in exchange for an honest review.
Available for the first time in softcover! Join Alice on her whimsical journey down the rabbit hole. For the first time ever, Lewis Carroll’s beloved masterpiece is faithfully adapted and illustrated in its entirety, including the long-lost chapter, “The Wasp in a Wig!” From her initial meeting with the White Rabbit in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, to her final dinner party with the entire (and outrageous) Through the Looking Glass cast, every moment of Alice’s adventures in that astonishing landscape is captured in gorgeous detail. With old favorites like the Cheshire Cat and the Mad Hatter joined now by a long-forgotten Carroll creation, The Wasp, in one of the book’s latter chapters, children and adults alike can rediscover the complete Alice tale and fall in love with Wonderland all over again!
When I requested this book on NetGallery, I was wondering what kind of adaptation this would be. I’m a huge fan of fairytales and Alice in Wonderland stories are my favorite to read about, however, as I started reading I was slightly disappointed with how identical this was to the novel. Of course, the disappointment didn’t last long as I entered the second half of the book, which told the story of Alice Through the Looking Glass.
Since I’m not as familiar with the second story as I am with Wonderland, I started noticing certain quirks about the comic that made me appreciate and want to read the novel again. Things like Alice’s honest and cutting personality, the dark and crazy designs of the characters compared to Alice’s more innocent look, and the extras in the back (I didn’t know there was an untold story!).
Speaking of extras, I really loved the breakdown of how the panels were made! I hadn’t really thought about how the process of adapting a novel into a comic would go and getting that insight was really interesting to me.
In terms of art, I was a bit iffy. Since Alice was drawn in manga fashion I was hoping the style would be consistent, however, she’s the only one to stay with that style (most of the time). All the others have a more American look, especially characters like the Hatter and the Dutchess. There were also panels were I was just confused with the sizes of the characters. In one panel Alice would tower over a character and in the next the character would be much larger. The instant changes in scenery also left me confused at times, however, as I got past the halfway point I started to get used to it.
Rating: 3.5 out 5
Parting Thoughts: The Complete Alice in Wonderland is a really good title for this book since it contains both Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, as well as the untold story of The Wasp in a Wig. It follows the novel’s dialogue pretty faithfully so it felt like a ‘true’ adaptation of the novel. At the same time the unique character designs and exaggerated expressions set a mood that we can’t get from just reading the novel. Unfortunately, the art felt too inconsistent and off anatomy-wise (in a not intentional way) so I was distracted half the time.
My favorite parts of this comic were the extras at the end (the poetry, the Wasp in the Wig story and background information, the process of adapting, and the interview).
Would I purchase this book for a friend/me? No