First time Cannonballer (LOL, “baller”), long time Pajiban. I decided to take the plunge and do a half Cannonball this year. So, first review is Alice. And I’m going to trigger warning the hell out of this because it’s difficult to even review it without touching on some nasty stuff.
Have you ever finished a book and gone full Kurtz?
Have you ever wished you could read a story about Discworld’s Ankh-Morpork, but without all that annoying wit, sharply observed satire and compelling characterisation? Have you ever wanted to read a fanfic set in the world of Dishonored, the most depressing PS4 game ever released?
Well you too can experience a total loss of hope for mankind by wading into the unrelenting misery of this book.
The Old City (ie. Wonderland) is the setting for this bleak trudge through the human soul. The story opens with Alice locked up in a mental institution and befriended by an axe murdering psychopath. You can tell he’s a good guy by how he doesn’t rape Alice immediately. They escape during a fire and set off into Old City battling rapists, cannibals, torturers, rapist torturers, and cannibal rapist torturers to try and prevent the Jabberwocky from taking over the world. I wasn’t kidding about Dishonoured either; the plot will be familiar to anyone who’s ever played any kind of quest based game. Person A tells you to go talk to person B, person B tells you to talk to person C, person C tells you to talk to person D. Some of these people are bosses who have to be beaten to progress to the next level. Not in a metaphorical “bosses” kind of way either, they’re literally gang bosses who each run a territory in Old City. It’s repetitive and full of extreme violence, mostly against women, who are almost entirely portrayed as the helpless victims of men, who’re pretty much all horrifically evil. If you’re wondering how any of this connects to Alice in Wonderland, the bad guys are named after characters from the book. Take it away Rickman: