Sunday, May 22, 2011

How Wonderful, Another Timeline: Wonderland in the TVCU, by James Bojaciuk

As we celebrate the fourth anniversary of the Television Crossover Universe, each day for ten days, I will represent one of my favorite posts from the past four years.

This post is significant in many ways.  It was written by James Bojaciuk, who first presented it in another forum.  I was so impressed by it, I invited him to publish it here in this blog.  It was the first guest blog and the first blog that didn't have a focus on television or film.  This post led to more posts from James, and later contributions from Gordon Long, Brad Mengel, and Kevin Heim.  This led me to create the TVCU Crew, and also paved the way for me to eventually make James a co-owner of this site.

James is currently working on an update for this post, which will first be presented in the first TVCU e-book, Television Crossover Universe:  Worlds and Mythology.  Eventually, the post will be updated on this website as well.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Update:  Working my way chronologically through the posts working on updates, this is the next one in the queue. But this is the first of the blogs that I didn't write.  So I will be skipping over this one.  But I will say that James Bojaciuk (or Bojangles) has informed me that he is working on an update of this blog, along with updates for his other blogs, and some new ones on the works.  So look out for them in the future.  Below is the original version of the blog.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This is my first guest blog, from TVCU Crew member James Bojaciuk.

So without further ado, I present Jame's timeline.  Enjoy.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


How Wonderful, Another Timeline: Wonderland in the TVCU
James Bojaciuk

Dedicated to the wonderful Librarians at Liberty University who put up with me
always asking them to find me the most impossible items. Special thanks goes to Rick Lai and Jay Lindsey for the information they provided, and to Robert Wronski Jr. for graciously allowing me to be the first guest poster on his fantastic TVCU blog.

The Age of Camelot—Tales from Wonderland: The White Knight
The White Knight, the illegitimate son of Lancelot and Geneivere, is raised by Merlin to hold to the honor of Camelot. Some time into the post-Camelot dark age, Merlin is missing and the White Knight is attacked by unknown assailants. During the fight he falls though Merlin’s mirror and arrives in Wonderland; he takes upon himself the role of protector and slays many of the monsters that roam the forests and villages.

Merlin holds the Looking Glass of Alyss, but as there is no evil little girl of queenly aspirations locked within the magical glass we may assume this story takes place before Taylor’s “The Fairest of Them All.”

Note: this is the only Wonderland story produced by Zenescope Entertainment that is based on true events. The rest of their Wonderland comic book line is entirely fictional, and impossible to square with proper Wonderlandian continuality.

Some 40 years after the fall of Camelot—Merlin’s mirror is brought to the Homelands (from the comic series Fables), most likely by some of the surviving Knights of the Round Table who chose to take up residence in the lands of fiction. They carved a castle within a mountain; this information can be reconstructed from the Seven Dwarfs’ discovery of Merlin’s Mirror within their mines. 

c. 1100s—events of Frank Beddor’s The Looking Glass War series (The Looking Glass War, Seeing Redd, and ArchEnemy)
This series is mostly fictional, and only true in the widest brushstrokes: Alyss Heart of Wonderland engages her forces in a massive civil war against the slightly more despotic Queen of Hearts. After a bloody war that greatly reduced the population of Wonderland, Alyss took the throne of Hearts. All of the universe crossing antics, however, are utterly fictional: Alyss is not the secret identity of Alice Liddell, nor was Alice Liddell an adopted girl of dubious sanity. The former Queen of Hearts fled to another universe (which is the Fables Homeland) after her defeat. In the Homelands she married Snow White’s father, and was the Evil Stepmother so well known to children everywhere. 

Note: the graphic novel series Hatter M is entirely fictional.

c. 1250—“The Fairest of Them All” by Sean Taylor, appearing in the collection Classics Mutilated.
The brutal queen Alyss gains entry to the Homelands through a magic mirror owned by Snow White (dug from their mines by the Seven Dawrfs): and leads her armies on a mad spree of slaughter in a successful attempt to find and slay the escaped Queen of Hearts. During the course of this story, two items are revealed. Firstly, this ancient Queen of Hearts was also Snow White’s sorcerous stepmother. Secondly, the Jabberwock is “the bastard child of the elder gods” (21); within context, these elder gods are H.P. Lovecraft’s own Elder Gods.     

After this story, Snow White magically bound Alyss with what was once Merlin’s Mirror. Alyss would attempt to leave this mirror many times over the coming centuries, and thus the mirror slowly became known as Alyss’ Looking Glass. And as the Ages pass, Alyss would become known to history as Alyss the Chaos Queen.

May 4, 1852—Alice Liddell is born to Henry and Lorina Liddell.

1855—“Stanza of Anglo-Saxon Poetry”; Lewis Carroll
In his literary journal Mischmasch, Carroll examines the first stanza of an otherwise lost Anglo-Saxon poem. Later, Carroll would be shocked to discover that this stanza is the first part of the Wonderland rhyme he would entitle “Jabberwocky” after Alice Liddell related the entirety of the poem to him. It is currently unknown how the first stanza of a Wonderlandian poem came to be recorded in an Anglo-Saxon poetic record.

This short essay can be found here: http://www.glasswings.com.au/giggle/stanza.html

1858—“Muchness”; Jody Lynn Nye, from the collection Fantastic Alice
The Dormouse accidently falls through a portal to the real world, and spends a fearful night outside the Liddell household. Later he would base his tale of the three sisters in the treacle well off this incident.

January 8, 1859—“Mimsy Were the Borogoves”; Lewis Padgett (Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore)
Alice Liddell discovers a small box of educational toys from a potential future. While playing with them, her mind expands at right angles. Some weeks later, during a picnic with Lewis Carroll, Alice quotes the entire first half of the poem “Jabberwocky” to Carroll. He is stunned that his child friend knows more of an obscure Anglo-Saxon poem than he did (he last analyzed the poem in 1855), but he promises Alice that he will write down the rest of it.

The toys were taken from Alice some weeks later. This prevented her from enacting the events that would occur in 1942.

The net effect of the educational toys was that Alice could find and travel through portals to alternate dimensions, thus enabling her to discover Wonderland and all of the other strange—perhaps impossible—universes she journeyed to. It is possible that some of her lost toys ended up in the hands of later Alices, thus enabling them to reach some of the same destinations.

May 4, 1859—Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland; Lewis Carroll
Alice Liddell, while having a picnic with one of her older sisters, spots a white rabbit in a waistcoat holding a watch; since it is a boring afternoon, Alice decides to follow the rabbit down a rabbit hole. Shortly thereafter she has a long string of adventures with the citizens of Wonderland. When she passes out from Wonderland (strangely at an emotional climax point), she awakes back in the real world none the worse for wear.

The discussion of the difference between my date for Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Win Scott Eckert’s applied date in his Crossovers will be found in a note at the end of the entry for Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There.

November 4, 1859—Though the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There; Lewis Carroll
While at home on a boring winter day, Alice travels through what is likely Alyss’ Looking Glass and has many adventures in the Looking-Glass World (a suburb of Wonderland), before playing a massively metaphysical game of chess and being crowned honorary Queen. Eventually she wakes from this seeming dream. 

During this adventure, the abandoned sketch “The Wasp in a Wig” occurs (the sketch has been reprinted in its entirety, with illustration, in Martin Gardner’s The Annotated Alice: The Definitive Edition).

Alice is “exactly seven and a half” during this adventure, which provides an exact date if we look to the biographic information of Alice Liddell. For this reason I depart from the date provided in Win Scott Eckert’s delightful Crossovers of spring 1862 for both of Carroll’s Alice novels. In addition, only Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland occurs in spring, Through the Looking Glass explicitly occurs in winter.

“The Wasp in a Wig” can be read online here: http://www.alice-in-wonderland.net/alice4.html

November 4, 1859—Wonderland; Tommy Kovac and Sonny Liew
This graphic novel tells the adventures of Mary Ann, the White Rabbit’s housekeeper who was confused with Alice during the events of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. This story begins several hours after Alice Liddell enters her mirror and begins playing her famous game of chess.

The Queen of Hearts receives notice from Twedledee and Twedledum that the White Rabbit played some part in the coming of the “Alice Monster” and sends her guards out after her former page. Mary Ann is suspected of being the Alice Monster in disguise, and has a long series of adventures fleeing the Queen of Hearts. She eventually is crowned honorary Queen of  Wonderland (a position without any real power; Alice Liddell herself also shares this title).

Interestingly, late in the story the court of the current Queen of Hearts is attacked by the gigantic form of “Alice the Chaos Queen.” The implication of this information is that Alice Liddell has made a return to Wonderland as something of a deus ex machina, yet this is impossible. During the time the Chaos Queen was battering the royal court, Alice Liddell was still deeply embroiled in the closing moves of her chess game. It seems that when Alice Liddell traveled to Looking-Glass world, she freed Alyss from her magical bonds and Alyss quickly went on rampage against the descendants of her citizens. When Alice Liddell traveled back to the real world, Alyss was once more bonded with her mirror.

November 6, 1959—The Liddells gift Lewis Carroll with their troublesome mirror (Alyss’ Looking Glass) to protect their daughter from harm. It must be noted that Alice was very unhappy with the loss of her new portal.

(This is an unscholarly aside, but Wonderland is my favorite of the many Alice pastiches.)

December 1859—The New Adventures of Alice; John Rae
The events of Alice Liddell’s third sojourn in Wonderland occur: these events were discovered by Betsy Maynard during her trip into an unknown alternate universe, wherein she was trapped in an archive of “books that were never written” for several hours. John Rea released these events to the public in his The New Adventures of Alice. For a full discussion of Betsy Maynard and what universe she may have ended up in, see the 1915 entry for The New Adventures of Alice.

This novel reveals that a number of the Mother Goose characters, in addition to Humpty Dumpty, have newly taken up residence in Wonderland-like universe that is almost certainly Wonderland. It is conceivable that they arrived in Wonderland after their home universe was taken over by the bloody-handed Adversary, the emperor from the comic series Fables who intends to take over the whole of fantastic universes. The Adversary is confirmed to exist in neighboring universes to the Television Crossover Universe in the Simon R. Green’s Nightside novel Sharper Than a Serpent’s Tooth.

The New Adventures of Alice can be read here:

http://tinyurl.com/New-Adventure-Alice

Sometime after May 4, 1860—“Who Killed Humpty Dumpty?”; Mickey Zucker Reichert, from the collection Fantastic Alice
Whilst trying to retrieve eggs from a local henhouse, Alice Liddell is pulled once more into Wonderland: this time to stand trial for the murder of Humpty Dumpty. Eventually, the court comes to the conclusion that Nobody is the vile murderer, as he was reportedly observed fleeing from the crime scene by Alice and the March Hair. But, the murderer is not Nobody—but someone else who finds that Egg is excellent for giving one’s fur a lovely sheen.

1860—Alice departs for Wonderland again, but is misdirected through space and time to the madness island of R’lyeh in 1923, just as Cthulhu wakes from his slumber. See the 1923 entry for “Alice at R’lyeh” for complete information.

1860—Automated Alice; Jeff Noon
Alice Liddell, whilst spending several months with her aunt and uncle in Manchester, accidently sets her relations’ pet parrot Whippoorwill free and follows him into the workings of a grandfather clock. Unlike all of her other adventures, Alice is tossed into the far future of 1998 Manchester rather than an unlikely alternate universe. A mysterious plague has ravaged the world, turning mankind into strange ani-men not entirely unlike Dr. Moreau’s creations. Alice’s doll Celia is transformed into the titular Automated Alice: a robotic “twin twister.” In order to return to her timeline Alice finds scattered puzzle pieces that seem to all be left in the wake of the vicious Jigsaw Killer. During these ordeals Alice wrangles with uncooperative science fiction authors, corrupt Sivil Serpents, and worst of all, literary critics who insist she cannot and does not exist outside of the mind of Lewis Carroll. Alice eventually manages to escape this terrible future with her relations’ parrot in tow; her twin twister, however, remains in the future.

This novel is a sequel to Jeff Noon’s Vurt series, which consists of the novels Vurt (1993), Pollen (1995), Automated Alice (1996), and Nymphomation (1997). Automated Alice establishes the Vurt series as an alternate future for the TVCU. Though it must be noted that the Vurt future is only a potential future from Alice Liddell’s chronological point; as we have already passed 1998 without a global genenophage the Vurt series is now impossible, a string of probabilities that never came to reality.

1862—A New Alice in Old Wonderland; Anna Matlack Richards
Alice Lee, a seventeen year old American girl, has a brief stay in Wonderland.

This novel has been moved to an earlier point than its publication would suggest so as to explain “Alice and Huck Got Married.”

This novel can be read here:

http://tinyurl.com/New-Alice-Old-Wonderland

Late September 1862—“Another Song for the Mock Turtle”; Lewis Carroll
Alice Liddell has a brief sojourn in Wonderland. The Mock Turtle teaches Alice another of his songs before she once more departs for her home universe.

1865—The New Traveller’s Almanac; Alan Moore & Kevin O’Nell, printed as a backup feature to The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Volume Two
“Miss A. L.” a little girl from an upper class family, disappears for four months into what Moore calls a “contra-rational world.” This world is likely Wonderland. The dating for this event is proof that “A. L.” is not Alice Liddell: though like many travelers to Wonderland, she shares Alice’s initials—and probably her first name as well.

1865—Navigation with Alice; Frank Debenham & Anne Scarisbrick
Alice Liddell learns about navigation and conceptual geography with the Mock Turtle, the Dodo, and the White Knight. I have not read this novel, but as it does not appear to conflict with any other sources I feel justified in placing it here.

1866—Sylvie and Bruno, and Sylvie and Bruno Concluded; Lewis Carroll
The fairy children Sylvie and Bruno escape a royal conspiracy in their homeland, and befriend Lewis Carroll (who portrays himself only as a nameless protagonist). At one point the Professor speaks of the Jubjub bird (from The Hunting of the Snark) which ties these two novels into the Television Crossover Universe.

Interestingly, in Chapter 23 of Sylvie and Bruno Carroll borrows an outlandish watch from the Professor. The watch has several functions, one of which is limited time control; in appearance and practice, the watch is shockingly similar to the “distorter” watches utilized in the Capellean/Eridani War as recorded in Farmer’s The Other Log of Phileas Fogg

1866—“Alice and Huck Got Married”; Miles David Moore, from the collection Alice Redux
Alice Lee and Huckleberry Finn fall in love, and get married. The locals are suspicious of Alice and her Wonderlandian visitors, until in a fit of anger they attempt to drive Alice and Huck from town. Following that event, Alice and Huck join Huck’s old friend Jim (and his family) in the west. This story shows Alice’s Wonderland friends as assisting the townfolk’s attack against Alice and Huck, this is entirely untrue: the Wonderland citizens were fighting off the townfolk, buying time for the newlyweds to escape.

At this time Alice Lee was 21, and Huck was around 25. Huck’s adventures took place in the late 1840s, rather than the 1820s or 30s per textual evidence shared with me by Rick Lai. Lai nails The Adventures of Tom Sawyer as occurring in 1845 per a full moon on the seventeenth of June; and the little known sequel novel Tom Sawyer Abroad as occurring in 1850 per a map trailing Sawyer’s journey printed in early editions that is dated to that year. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn would likely take place in early 1846. (Thanks to Rick Lai for the chronological information.)

Note: this story portrays this Alice as Alice Liddell, but as that contradicts the biographical information of Alice Liddell’s life, we may assume that the Alice in question is actually the American Alice Lee.

1867—More ‘Alice’; Yates Wilson
Alice, though dreadfully sick, wonders off into an alternate universe where people try to unlearn concepts to achieve moral respectably.

1868—“What the Tortoise Said to Achilles”; Lewis Carroll
A tortoise and the Grecian warrior are friends, and discuss logic problems. The tortoise leads Achilles into an infinite regression paradox. This story is difficult to date, as it could occur at any point in time between ancient Greece and the events of Alice’s Journey Beyond the Moon, though a mention of the Mock-Turtle from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland argues effectively for a date some time during the 19th century.

1869—“Puzzles from Wonderland”; Lewis Carroll
Alice Liddell has another brief stay in Wonderland. This time her friends teach her a series of illogical riddles. When she returns to her home universe, Alice presumably relates the mind puzzles to Carroll.

1871—“From a Letter to Lewis Carroll on ‘Jabberwocky’”; Dr. Robert Scott (dean of Rochester and friend of Lewis Carroll), reprinted in Aspects of Alice
I will take the liberty of quoting the relevant section at length:

“Are we to suppose, after all, that the Saga of the Jabberwocky is one of the universal heirlooms which the Aryan race at its dispersion carried with it from the great cradle of the family? You really must consult Max Muller about this. It begins to be probable that the origo originalissima may be discovered in Sanskrit, and that we shall by and by have a Iabrivokaveda. The hero will turn out to be the Sun-God in one of his Avatars; and the Tumtum tree the great Ash Yggdrasil of the Scandinavian mythology.”

Scott furthers the theory that the Jabberwock (that bastard offspring of the Elder Gods) can be found battling the heroes of mankind even in the earliest days of mythology. One must wonder if any of these time lost heroes are Sahhindar (AKA Gribardsun, AKA Tarzan) wondering into yet another adventure.

1871—The New Traveller’s Almanac; Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neil, printed as a backup feature to The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Volume Two.
“Miss A. L.” once more disappeared into her contra-rational world, this time though a mirror at Christ Church College, Oxford. During this trip all of her internal organs flip position as if seen through a mirror. Some six months later, she dies of malnourishment.

The mirror in question is likely Alyss’ Looking Glass, which was likely still in the possession of Lewis Carroll at this time.

Early 1872—Alice in Blunderland; John Kendrick Bangs
The Mad Hatter has been given his own kingdom, called by him a "Municipal Ownership Country." It operates on socialism, and generally everyone except him and the March Hare is miserable with the unmoving trains and terrible economy.

The novel’s ending leads us to believe that, as proven by the rest of this timeline, that Alice had many more adventures in Wonderland. Her family is aware of them by this point, and looks on her continual adventures with amusement, even asking her if she has was just in Wonderland or a new place.

October 1872—Sherlock Holmes befriends Lewis Carroll while attending Christ Church at Oxford (William S. Baring-Gould’s Sherlock Holmes of Baker Street). Perhaps during this time Holmes first heard of Wonderland from Carroll, though doubtless at this time the future Great Detective would have passed off the stories of a world beyond our own as another of his friend’s jokes.

1874—Alice’s Journey Beyond the Moon; R. J. Carter & Lucy Wright
Alice travels to the Wonderlandian moon and has a series of uninteresting adventures. While there, she meets her old friends the Mad Hatter and the March Hare, but they are operating incognito for some unknown reason. She also encounters Achilles and the Tortoise from Carroll’s piece “What the Tortoise Said to Achilles.” At present it is unclear how the pair came to be on the Wonderlandian moon.

There is one disturbing effect to the acknowledgement that this novel is part of the Television Crossover Universe (TVCU). This novel is seen in Dream’s library in Neil Gaiman’s comic series The Sandman, and thus the events of the Sandman comic series is drawn into the TVCU as Alice’s Journey Beyond the Moon exists in both universes. A number of other crossovers exist that strongly suggest that The Sandman exists within the confines of the TVCU. In the Sandman storyline The Kindly Ones, Dream (the protagonist) meets with some allies in the Wood Between Worlds, a place which originally appeared in C. S. Lewis’ The Magician’s Nephew. In the Doctor Who novel Happy Endings, which Win Scott Eckert wolds in Volume Two of Crossovers, the version of Death from the Sandman comics attends Bernice Summerfield’s wedding. In Simon R. Green’s Drinking Midnight Wine (which is wolded through a host of other internal crossovers, as well as by being a spin-off of sorts to the already wolded Nightside novels), Death has a long conversation with Toby Dexter after he takes a bullet to the head (he got better). The Magdalene Grimoire, from the first issue of Sandman, appears in the Angel episode “Hell Bound.”

Some questionable crossovers with the Sandman also exist. Rhys Thomas’ The Suicide Club, which is supposedly a semi-sequel to Robert Lewis Stevenson’s Suicide Club stories, features several appearances by “Death of the Endless.” Versions of Dream and Death appear in Planetary #7, there are a number of continuity differences between Planetary and the TVCU, but according to the research of Jess Nevins. Destiny is very similar to Lord Dunsany’s character “The Thing that is Neither God nor Beast, Trogool”; because of the interconnected relation between Dunsany and Lovecraft’s work, Trogool may or may not exist in the TVCU. If it does, that provides a strong link between The Sandman and the TVCU.

Some readers may now be wondering what the issue of inclusion is; there is a number of universes, and the Endless exist in all worlds serving their goals. Despite this, inclusion of the Sandman as is would shatter the established cosmology of the TVCU; Satan has not abandoned Hell (though he is not bound to remain within Hell, yet) to the command of angels, nor as the sequel series Lucifer shows has the God of the Hebrew and Christian religions died to make way for a girl of pantheistic intentions.

To avoid the problems with Sandman’s inclusion to the TVCU, and follow the evidence presented, is not a difficult problem. The best position to assume is that most of the Sandman stories take place within the TVCU (or, dear reader, if you believe the universe shown in DC Comics exists, it may take place there), but many are outright fictions with no basis in truth. Other stories are a mix and match of truth and fantasy.    

April 1876—The Hunting of the Snark; Lewis Carroll
An expedition sets out to discover a Snark, and return it to England for zoological study. The full list of the members of the expedition does not list their names (in all but two cases), but only their professions: a Bellman, a Baker, a Butcher, a Beaver, a Bonnet-Maker, A Banker, A Broker, a Barrister, a Billiard-Maker and a Boots. If the illustrations to the first edition are to be trusted (Lewis Carroll was heavily involved in their composition), two young ladies, Hope and Care, also accompanied the expedition. Making matters more confusing, some commentators have argued that Care is the Bellman’s ship’s figurehead and Hope is the Boots. For the purposes of this timeline, we will only make further mention of the party members mentioned within the text of The Hunting of the Snark itself.

Alan Moore records that Carroll’s Beaver was actually Miss Beaver—a lace maker of some note. Considering that in “Fit the Fifth: The Beaver’s Lesson” it is recorded that the Beaver and the Butcher were became lifelong friends, and apparently lived together long after the Snark Expedition: it is my opinion that shortly after the events of the Snark Expedition the Butcher and Miss Beaver married and lived together many years.

As for the Snark Expedition itself: the crew departed from a port in England, and eventually ended up on the island of the Snark. According to a letter from Lewis Carroll to Mrs. Chataway (the mother of one of his young friends) the island from The Hunting of the Snark is “an island frequented by the Jubjub and Bandersnatch—no doubt the very island where the Jabberwock was slain” (Note 26 from Gardener’s Through the Looking Glass). Between this letter, and scattered references to the Jubjub Bird and other Wonderlandian elements found in the text itself that The Hunting of the Snark is discussed here.

The expedition was unsuccessful, as no proper Snarks were discovered. Only a deadly false Snark, the dreaded Boojum, was discovered.

In The New Traveller’s Almanac, Alan Moore records that all members of the expedition went insane upon their return to their own universe. This is untrue: as seen in “The Greek Interpreter” and in a close reading of Carroll’s text the Boots, the Billiard-Maker, the Bucher, and the Beaver all went on to live long and fulfilling lives. The only physical causalities of the Snark Expedition were the Baker (who was grabbed by a Boojum) and the Banker (who suffered a lingering death not unlike that of “Miss A. L.”); the only mental causality was the Bellman, who died many decades later in an insane asylum, always sketching out new maps just like the one which originally led him to Snark Island.

Note: the short fit “The Clue: A Sequel” by J. A. Lindon occurs between Carroll’s “Fit the Seventh: The Banker’s Fate” and “Fit the Eighth: The Vanishing.” This poem was reprinted in John Gardner’s The Annotated Hunting of the Snark


1876—“Down the Rabbit Hole Again”; “The Cook, the Pig, the Cat & His Duchess”; “The Tea Party Resumes”; “Dee & Dum”; “The Walrus and the Carpenter Head Back”; “The Battle”; “In the Garden of Hearts”; “The Trial Begins”; “The Hatter’s Defence [sic]”; “The Hare’s Rebuttal & the Hatter’s Rebuke”; “The Knave of Hearts Repents”: “The Queen’s Sentence”; “The Royal Flush”; and “Waking”: poems all by J. T. Holden from the collection Alice in Verse: The Lost Rhymes of Wonderland
Alice Liddell travels once more to Wonderland by way of rabbit hole, wherein she has many adventures with her old friends. The Knave of Hearts is no longer the one that stole the tarts during Alice’s first journey to Wonderland: perhaps the original has retired, and placed his son in his old role. This Knave would later prove himself to be a traitor (see the entry for Alice in Wonderland (2010 film)). Incidentally, the new Knave did not steal the tarts, rather the Mad Hatter, The March Hair, and the Dormouse are the criminals. The Knave’s unjust persecution may be what would later lead him to play the part of Benedict Arnold in the Second Wonderlandian Civil War.

Some of the poems in this collection have been placed later in the timeline, as the Caterpillar has turned into a butterfly. This happened in Alice in Wonderland (2010 film).

1877—A seven year old Alice Kingsleigh steps into wonderland, and has some minor adventures with the citizens (flashbacks in Alice in Wonderland (2010 film)).

Summer 1881—After a journey in this year, Alice Liddell does not visit Wonderland again for a period of six years. The reason for this hiatus are unknown.

1883—The beginning of the second Wonderland Civil War.

1886—Alice in Wonderland (2010 film)
The few remaining free Wonderlandians struggle to find Alice Liddell to help them in the losing war against the new Red Queen. While searching England, the White Rabbit finds Alice Kingsleigh and mistakes her for Liddell; despite being entirely unprepared (mentally and physically) for what the Wonderlandians need, she manages to gain victory. The Jabberwock is slain once more. Kingsleigh never returned to Wonderland.

1887—“The Caterpillar’s Lesson on Rhetoric and Rhyme”; “The Mariner’s Tale”; “The Subjective Review”: poems all by J.T. Holden from the collection Alice in Verse: The Lost Rhymes of Wonderland
The Caterpillar makes Alice Liddell endure a poetry recital. As the Caterpillar has sprouted wings by the time these tales occur, so they must nessically take place after the events of Alice in Wonderland (2010 film).

1888—“The Greek Interpreter”; Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
In The Annotated Hunting of the Snark, Martin Gardner argues that two surviving members of the Snark expedition are spotted walking about London by Sherlock Holmes, his brother Mycroft, and Dr. Watson.

“I like to think that the crew’s [of the Snark Expedition’s] Billiard-maker is none other than the billiard-maker whom Sherlock Holmes and his brother Mycroft observed, many years later, strolling down Pall Mall with his friend the Boots. After leaving the Bell’s crew, the Boots had enlisted in the Royal Artillery. He was discharged after honourable service in India, but was so fond of his boots that he continued to wear them (as Mycroft noticed) after his retirement from service.” (The Annotated Hunting of the Snark)

I find Gardner’s bit of creative mythography to not only be excellent, but logically sound—thus the theory’s inclusion on this timeline.

1889—When the deadite infected Sentry escaped the Marvel Zombies universe, he split into a string of possibilities where versions of him ended up in many different universes. One of these deadite Sentrys ended up in Wonderland. At this moment two futures existed, one in which the infection took hold over the whole of wonderland, and one in which the infection was quickly stopped. During this moment of wavering reality, Ashley Williams briefly engaged in battle against the zombie future, before moving on. The clean universal future, however, won out and the Sentry was destroyed moments after entering Wonderland by the roaming Jabberwock.

This is based on information presented in Army of Darkness vs. The Re-Animator.
1893—“The Case of the Detective’s Smile”; Mark Bourne, from the collection Sherlock Holmes in Orbit
Sherlock Holmes visits Wonderland during the Great Hiatus. While there he solves the theft of the Queen’s tarts, and inspires the White Rabbit to briefly pursue a career as a consulting detective.

Holmes likely learned of Wonderland, and how to enter the universe, from Lewis Carroll.

1894—The British Government discovers a portal to Wonderland, and dispatches a small military expedition to that world to collect samples. They killed and retrieved several card soldiers, the body of a dressed white rabbit, and a used smile of the Cheshire Cat, all of which were stored in the Hidden Annex of the Royal Museum after much study. This information is based on the cover for the second issue of the second volume of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.

1898—“The Case of the Detective’s Smile”; Mark Bourne, from the collection Sherlock Holmes in Orbit.
Sherlock Holmes and Alice Liddell discuss their relative adventures in Wonderland. Alice gifts Holmes with one of the Cheshire Cat’s spare smiles, which acts as a positive replacement for Holmes cocaine.

“The Case of the Detective’s Smile” can be read free online here:  http://www.markbourne.com/Holmes.htm

1901— The New Traveller’s Almanac; Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neil, printed as a backup feature to The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Volume Two.
Wilhelmina Murray visits the insane Bellman, captain of the Snark Expediton, on behalf of the English Crown. No useful information was uncovered from this visit, though Murray did receive a blank “map” that would, theoretically, allow her to locate the island of the Snark. Wilhelmina holds a unnatural dread of the seemingly blank “map.”

1901—The Westminster Alice; Saki
Alice Liddell goes to Wonderland and learns about the workings of wartime politics.

Despite the subject matter, this is one of the more delightful Alice pastiches.

1915—New Adventures of Alice; John Rae
Betsy Maynard stumbles into a universe that may have been Wonderland, there finding herself in an archive of “books that were never written.” She finds another adventure of Alice Liddell in this archive, and contents herself reading this lost adventure until she finally is pulled back into her own world. Unfortunately, much of Lewis Carroll’s style was lost in transmission from the adventure Carroll never truly wrote to Betsy, then to John Rae, then to the final printed edition.

There is some question as to where exactly Betsy ended up. If she arrived in a Wonderlandian archive, she has the unique distinction of being the only child to arrive there not named Alice (or some variant thereof). However, it is difficult to square Betsy’s tale of how the archive looked like a dusty attic with the idea of a Wonderlandian archive. There is a more logical explanation to where she ended up, however.

The Doctor Who episodes “Silence in the Library” and “Forest of the Dead” feature an alternate universal (at least to the TVCU) planet library that holds in stock every book ever written. This planet is termed, simply, The Library. It is possible that eventually the library began to import and stock books not from The Library’s home universe, and a portion of this is the archive Betsy stumbled into. If so, this holds gloomy portents for the future of The Library. Jorge Luis Borges examines in his classic short story “The Library of Babel” the idea of a dystopian library that contains every possible variant text for every book ever conceived. Nearly all of these books are useless gibberish. Perhaps The Library the Doctor encountered in his adventures is the same as Borges’ library, only several centuries before the collection overextended itself past the thick line to madness. Betsy’s sojourn there takes place between these two events, but much closer to the Doctor’s visit.

1921 (date of publication)—Alice L: Witch Goddess of the Realms; unknown author
This mystic-feminist pamphlet hardly deserves discussion here, except to note that none of the events related by the “unknown author” actually occurred. By and large the pamphlet relates a garbled version of the events of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, though significant passages are added and the text is written in the style of a popular history rather than a novel. Witch Goddess begins with Alice (surprisingly with the last name “Liddle”) preforming magic rites with her school friends Ada, Mabel, and Libba. Ada and Mabel were Alice Liddell’s school friends mentioned in Wonderland; Libba is a literary invention of this pamphlet’s author.

The four, who term themselves The Order, successfully summon up a portal by calling upon “Those who slumber eternally” (4). Upon passing through the portal “which has the mien of a looking glass” (5), they arrived in the Realms, which is apparently the physical source of all true magic. After some heavy-handed hints of lesbian activity Alice wonders off from her friends and follows the White Rabbit. The Witch Goddess text then conforms to the events found in the Carroll novel until the trial: at which point the King of Hearts arrests Alice for stealing his own tarts and attempts to behead Alice, this time for real. She is rescued from this fate by her three friends, who have taken on the universal aspect of “three great heroes” (12), A duck-woman wizard, a dog-woman knight errant, and a “locksmith of great inventiveness who had no need of locks, but of only her pickish key” (12). They provide solid evidence that Alice did not steal the sexist King’s tarts, but that the Soulless, or Rakshana, thefted the baked goods.

The second to final page is an ad homin attack against the character of Lewis Carroll (for altering records of the Order, both in changing the events of Wonderland and making up the events of Through the Looking Glass); the final page is a praise to the character of Alice “Liddle” the Witch Goddess, and a hinting of a sequel pamphlet that sounds much like a confused version of the events related in the 2010 film Alice in Wonderland.

Debunking this text is an exercise in wasting time, as the text itself barely holds to coherence. The theories presented herein are easy to refute: it is impossible for all but the insane to imagine a seven year old Victorian girl taking part in both a violent cult and, even more farfetched, this girl actively involving herself in lesbian sexual activity. At best this pamphlet can be considered an inside look into the mind of the insane fringe of the early suffragette movement. I only note this on the timeline so that future investigators do not become tricked into thinking the pamphlet of any research value. Thus the socialist novel Alice and the Stork: A Fairy Tale for Workingmen’s Children would fall under the same category as Witch Goddess: though that novel is far from bizarre enough to deserve commentary.

1923—“Alice at R’lyeh”; Murray Ewing
Alice finds herself transported onto the island R’lyeh as Cthulhu wakes; she is joined by the astral form of H. P. Lovecraft, who is utterly hopeless in the face of the existential terror. Alice is curious and logical, as always. As the Great Old One wakes, the Cheshire Cat arrives and harangues him back to his tomb. Lovecraft’s astral form drifts home while Alice and the Cat continue on to Wonderland.

During her investigation of R’lyeh Alice discovers an etching that looks much like the Jabberwock. This information squares nicely with Sawn Taylor’s “The Fairest of Them All.” Lovecraft’s allegation the Cheshire Cat is the avatar of Azathoth, however, cannot be taken seriously by any historian of Wonderland.

Normally I exclude all internet based fan fiction, but this poem proved so excellent (and in such a masterful copy of Lewis Carroll’s poetic style) that I find it may have occurred within the bounds of the TVCU. For readers who object to the use of any fan fiction, you are free to disregard this entry entirely.

“Alice at R’lyeh” may be found online at:  http://www.murrayewing.co.uk/alice/alice.php

November 16, 1934—Alice Liddell Hargreaves dies at the age of 82. She is still remembered by the citizens of Wonderland as their greatest friend.

1942—“Mimsy Were the Borogoves”; Lewis Padgett (Henry Kuttner and C. L. Moore)
Scott and Emma Paradine discover another box of educational toys much like the ones Alice Liddell discovered in 1859. Unlike with Alice however, the toys were not taken from the Paradines and they soon built a portal with their toys—and mathematical constants imbedded in the text of the poem “Jabberwocky”—and left for the far future point that the toys originated from.

I have no evidence for this theory, but I believe the toys are the early childhood training devices utilized by the Ethicals to produce the “correct” mindsets in their young. The Ethicals are from Philip José Farmer’s Riverworld series (see the entry at “unknown future date” for more information).
 
1947—“The Last Days of Alice”; Allen Tate, reprinted in Aspects of Alice
This poem describes a “mammoth but not fat” Alice who “quivers forever with abstract rage…in the deep suspension of the looking-glass.” The very forces of the universe have driven her insane.
This Alice is obviously Alyss the Chaos Queen: and she seems to have finally gone insane sometime around this year.

1961—The Illuminati comes into possession of Alyss’ Looking Glass. Some evidence suggests that the mirror was occasionally used in MU Ultra’s Project Monarch training; the poor little girls used in the experiments would be shown the mirror, and the screaming Alyss within. They would then be told by their handlers that this was Alice Liddell, and that there was no such thing as a happy ending.

Information of dubious quality about Monarch Programming can be found here:

http://secretarcana.com/hiddenknowledge/monarch-programming-mind-control/

1985—The Oz-Wonderland War; comic miniseries by E. Nelson Bridwell, Joey Cavalieri, and Carol Lay.
The Cheshire Cat travels to the Looniverse and recruits Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew to assist in the Oz/Wonderland War. The name of the war is a misnomer: the Wonderlandians are assisting the Ozian underground movement in their war against the Nome King who has conquered Oz. Eventually the assembled heroes of three worlds defeat the Nome king, and return to their home universes. The Oz seen in this story is Oz-prime.

A special note must be made of the art. Carol Lay manages to create perfect sustained reproductions of the art styles of W. W. Denslow, Sir John Tenniel, and John R. Neill. It’s a pleasure to see all of these diverse art styles interacting over the course of the story.

1988—“Mirrors” and “Wonderland”; songs and music videos by Natalia Kills
This video loosely records the Illuminati’s attempted sale of Alyss’ Looking Glass to The Red Queen cult, a cult based around Carroll’s writings about Wonderland. During the trade, one of the groups turned on the other and a gun battle ensued; the Illuminati agents were victorious, and retrieved the survivors of the Wonderland group and subjected them to Monarch Programming, converting them Into mind slaves.

Some of the rites of the Red Queen Cult are seen in Natalia Kills’ music video “Wonderland.”

The mirror was damaged during the gun battle, and was not picked up by the Illuminati agents. An antique shop owner found it in the gutter the next morning, and dragged it back to his shop, where he paid to have the minor damage repaired. Some months later it would be purchased by the next Alice’s family. 

“Mirrors” can be found here:

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g4By_cfI_1g

“Wonderland” can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYujmqUK-_8&feature=relmfu

1989-1992—Adventures in Wonderland (1991-1995 television series)
Another young Alice comes into possession of a magic mirror that allows her to travel back and forth from Wonderland at will. During a several year period of her life she travels to Wonderland nearly every day, learning valuable life lessons from the citizens (apparently more than one hundred years of encountering little girls has softened the outlook of the Wonderlandian citizens). Curiously, this Alice also owns a cat named Dinah, much like Alice Liddell.
Considering the reality altering properties of this Alice’s mirror, the mirror seen in here is most likely Alyss’ Looking Glass.

1994—“Something to Grin About”; Lawrence Watt-Evens, from the collection Fantastic Alice
The Cheshire Cat takes up a residence in this reality with Melody Duke, a distant descendant of Huckleberry Finn and Alice Lee. The Cat humorously removes Melody’s abusive boyfriend before settling into his new vacation home.

1994—“And With Finesse”; Janet Pack, from the collection Fantastic Alice
Renaissance Faire duelist Nick Thornfield is ripped from his home universe by the Cheshire Cat to slay the Jabberwock with the legendary Vorpal Blade. He does so, and returns home with a gemstone gifted to him by the King of Hearts.

1994—Alice in Quantumland; Robert Gilmore
Alice, from the television series Adventures in Wonderland, accidently steps into another universe called Quantumland.

1997—Alice (from Adventures in Wonderland) meets her college roommate Alice Liddle (popularly called Chibi, and of no relation to Alice Liddell). Despite the fact that Chibi was a had more than a touch of the Gothic about her, they become close friends.

1999—“In The Dark”; song and music video by The Birthday Massacre
Over spring break, Chibi stays with Alice. Somehow Chibi activates the mirror, but instead of wondering into Wonderland she frees Alyss from her extra-dimensional prison. Alyss trades bodies with Chibi and keeps the charade up for several days, until Agents of the international Warehouse system are alerted to the spiking highs of supernatural activity; eventually the agents work out the cause of events, reverse the body swap, and claim Alyss’ Looking Glass for Warehouse 13.

Before this, Alice has a brief tearful farewell to her childhood friends, all of whom assure her there are other paths to Wonderland.

Though I glossed over many of the events found in the “In the Dark” music video, which is primarily concerned with Chibi’s possession by Alyss, the video and song can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tLOfluH8mgQ

(CAUTION: it is common for hearers and viewers of Birthday Massacre to feel extreme discomfort and existential dread. I am not saying this to sound cool, this is true. If you have had reoccurring thoughts of suicide I strongly recommend avoiding this video. This however, is one of their more moderate songs.)

1999—Resident Evil: CODE: Veronica; novel by S.D. Perry, video game by Capcom.
Claire Redfield infiltrates the Russian branch of Umbrella Corporation in an effort to destroy their biological weapons. While there she encounters the Jabberwock S3, a Bio-Organic Weapon that bears a suspicious resemblance to Sir John Tenniel’s illustration of the feared beast.

It’s well known that Umbrella Corporation has an affection for esoteric weapons. With their connections, crossing the dimensional void and collection the offspring of the jabberwock to genetically toy with would be a simple matter. Umbrella also has a Bio-Organic Weapon named the “bandersnatch” but it has no similarities to the Wonderlandian creature.   

2003—Hex and the City; Simon R. Green
John Taylor, preeminent private investigator of the Nightside, stops at Rick’s which is a restaurant dedicated to serving up extinct animals and creatures not normally found in the Television Crossover Universe proper. Taylor advises his secretary not to sample the Jabberwocky giblets as the side dish of borogroves are usually quite mimsy.

2008—Hack/Slash: Entry Wound; Tim Seeley

In  an empty pocket dimension formed centuries ago by the Thoans, the actualized concept Mary Shelly Lovecraft is battled by heroes of this earth (the TVCU) and other worlds. The only heroes attending the event known to be from the TVCU are the residents of the Boneyard (due to crossovers with The Creature from the Black Lagoon, Frankenstein, and Friday the 13th), and the girl the narration notes only as “the daughter of Alice  Liddel.” Clearly this is not the daughter of Alice Liddell; Alice Liddell had no daughters, and the last name is spelt far too differently.   

It is my belief that this Alice Liddle is Chibi from The Birthday Massacre song “In the Dark.” Somehow she has once more been drawn into cosmic-level battle against evil.

2008—“Resonance”—episode of Warehouse 13
The new Warehouse 13 agents, Pete Lattimer and Myka Bering, unwittingly release Alyss from her mirror, allowing her to take over the body of Myka. Chaos ensues until Alyss is returned to her mirror.

Officially the person sealed within the mirror is Alice Liddell, but this can be explained away easily enough in that this heavily conflicts with the real world Alice Liddell’s biography: she was not magically sealed inside a mirror sometime before her tenth birthday. Despite this, the girl in the mirror matches up with Alyss quite easily.


3622—“The World of the Jabberwock”; comic story from Mystery in Space #104, author and artist unknown
Three scientists travel to the world of Wonderland, and are nearly killed by the Jabberwock, and have near run ins with a jubjub bird and a bandersnatch. They come to the conclusion that the Boojum is a creature of matter in an anti-matter world, but the science behind such an assertion is shaky at best.

Unknown future date—Philip José Farmer’s Riverworld series (To Your Scattered Bodies Go, The Fabulous Riverboat, The Dark Design, The Magic Labyrinth, The Gods of Riverworld
Alice Liddell is resurrected on the Riverworld, and joins Richard Burton in his efforts to discover why everyone who ever lived (up until the mid-1980s) have been brought back to seemingly immortal life. Evidence that this is indeed the Alice Liddell who traveled to Wonderland, is that when she created her “perfect world” in The Gods of Riverworld, it was a small scale reproduction of Wonderland, with protean robots of all her friends.

Interestingly, it was Alice who unknowingly discovered the link between the Ethicals (those who commanded the Riverworld project) and the Eridanians (who commanded a grand conspiracy of immortals that ensnared many Victorian luminaries such as Professor James Moriarty, Phileas Fogg, and others; their efforts recorded in Philip José Farmer’s The Other Log of Phileas Fogg).

In chapter 8 of The Magic Labyrinth, Alice plays Bridge with Aphra Behn, Lazzaro
Spallanzani, and most notable for our purposes, Ladislas Podebrade, agent of
the Ethicals.
"The game was over a few minutes later with Podebrad and Alice winners and
Spallanzani angrily demanding why Podebrad had lead with a diamond instead of a
club. The Czech refused to tell him but said that he should be able to figure it
out for himself...but she [Alice] still didn't know anymore than Spallanzni how
Podebrad had done it."

This leads us to Chapter 3 of The Other Log of Phileas Fogg.
"Stuart was as keen a card sharper as there ever was." Later, after Farmer records that Stuart cheated in order to play the right cards: "And so Stuart laid down as his first card that which he had selected, the jack of diamonds. To all except Stuart and Fogg, it meant that Diamonds would be trumps. To Fogg it was an order to bet, to take a dare, though not with the cards. What bet? What dare? That depended on Stuart's conversation and Fogg's ability to interpret."
We can be assured that Podebrad was attempting to give same orders to Spallanzni. Spallanzni, however, does not make another appearance in the Riverworld series.

Thus we begin to see that Alice plays a vital role in uncovering the truth behind the Television Crossover Universe, even if her sleuthing happened after her official death.

ALTERNATE FUTURES:

In Army of Darkness vs. the Re-Animator, Ash briefly ended up in a deadite infested Wonderland. This event was averted from happening in the primary timeline in 1889, when the Jabberwock destroyed the infection carrier. This alternate future no longer exists, and has been erased from the pluriverse.



2 comments:

  1. Really liked this one, although it did leave out one of my favourites - the appearance of assorted Wonderland characters in Roger Zelazny's "Blood of Amber" and "Sign of Chaos".

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the lead, Doc! I'll look into the two Zelazny novels: and if they fit, I will include them in the next edition of this timeline.

    ReplyDelete