Tuesday, December 3, 2013
By Tommy Kovac
Illustrated by Sonny Liew
Published by Disney Press
Copyright © 2008
Review by Anthony Kendrick
“Why Mary Ann! What are you doing out here?...Don’t just do something, stand there... Uh... no no! Go go! Go get my gloves! I'm late!” The familiar cries of the White Rabbit, of course, but just who is this Mary Ann?
Wonderland is an unofficial offshoot of Disney’s original animated movie “Alice in Wonderland”. It isn’t the same old cutesy nonsense though. Wonderland takes us to the aftermath of Alice’s visit and show’s us Wonderland from the viewpoint of the White Rabbit’s clean freak maid, Mary Ann.
The White Rabbit is implicated in the events with the “Alice Monster” and he is soon being hunted by the Queen of Hearts with Mary Ann in tow. With the leading and misleading of the Cheshire Cat Mary Ann soon finds herself the object of the Queen’s ire and the focus of “The Curious” who view her as a savior. This chase is going to end with a battle for power between various members of Wonderland and a battle with power (or the idea of it) for Mary Ann.
This beautifully illustrated graphic novel is definitely Disney-esque but with a hint of Asian Manga influence. The story itself is edgy and funny, especially with Mary Ann’s obsessive cleaning and her over the top reactions to dirt. Who would think that such a character trait could get a person into so much trouble? There are moments when Mary Ann becomes very relatable, especially to teens, when she is contemplating her self-worth and what she wants to do with her life. I really appreciated what Mary Ann chose to do when presented with a decision to change her life. Would it be for the better? Was there anything wrong with her position as it was? Even though it is just a graphic novel, it makes a person think about what is really valuable and what it is that makes us important.
This is an enjoyable and colorful read that should keep most young adults attention, however it might help to be familiar with the original books by Lewis Carroll or with the 1951 Disney movie if you want to understand the story more fully.