Grown-up “Alice” comes to Syfy


While we’re waiting to see what Tim Burton will do with Alice in Wonderland next spring, another Alice will give us a modern take on the adventure. Alice, a two-part miniseries set 150 years after the original trip to Wonderland, will premier Dec. 6 on Syfy — and it looks like a win.

Let’s start with the promotional trailer.

Alice Hamilton, played by Caterina Scorsone, is far from the somewhat quaint little girl of Lewis Carroll’s original tale. This Alice is an independent, assertive twenty-something woman who teaches martial arts.

But, as is the case with all of us, Alice has issues, one of which is in the relationship department. She wants things to work with her boyfriend Jack, but panics when he proposes with an extravagant engagement ring that has been in his family for generations. Alice turns him down, then watches in horror as a well-dressed group of men (“The Suits”) kidnap Jack in hopes of getting the jewel. Alice follows as they take Jack through the looking glass — and finds herself in the parallel universe of Wonderland.

The evil Queen of Hearts, played by Oscar-winner Kathy Bates, rules Wonderland and she is far from hospitable to Wonderland’s visitor, still remembering a previous Alice who “brought down the whole house of cards.”

In this rendering, Wonderland is a totalitarian state where the queen controls the masses through the use of magic teas and potions. To tell you more would spoil the story, but sci-fi fans will enjoy the ways director Nick Willing has twisted the tale.

Other big names include Matt Frewer as The White Knight, Colm Meaney as the King of Hearts, Harry Dean Stanton as Caterpillar and Tim Curry as Dodo.

Alice sounds original enough that perhaps it will escape comparison with Burton’s version and become a hit. I hope so, because maybe then someone will actually produce flying flamingo cycles.

Are you ready to see a stronger, more modern Alice? Will you watch Syfy’s version?