Webcomic / Cheshire Crossing
is a Crossover fantasy webcomic
by Andy Weir
in which Alice Liddell
, Wendy Darling
and Dorothy Gale
are brought to an Extranormal Institute
-style Boarding School
run by Ernest Rutherford
, so they can be taught to master their latent superpowers
by Mary Poppins
. Action and adventure ensue.
The comic also features the Wicked Witch of the West
, Peter Pan, Captain Hook and Tinker Bell
, the Knave of Hearts and the Mad Hatter
and Lemuel Gulliver
Four issues were released, forming a pretty self-contained story arc, before the series came to an unannounced halt. The author later said
he didn't intend to continue it, and had given up on drawing comics unless he decides to hire a professional artist.
And, guess what! That very thing happened, years later, as the comic was rebooted in 2017, now with Sarah Andersen as artist. The new comic
is found on Tapastic and seems to be adapting the original plotline rather faithfully. Unfortunately, a portion of the comic is behind a paywall, but at least you no longer need an Android or iOS app to unlock it.
See also Casey and Andy
, Weir's previous, completed webcomic, and The Martian
, Weir's debut novel, published to great success in 2014.
This comic provides examples of:
- Acquired Poison Immunity: Alice isn't knocked out by the Wicked Witch's magical poppy field as she has built up a tolerance to laudanum while sectioned in a series of mental institutions.
- Action Girl: All girls display some tendencies, but Wendy most of all.
- Adaptation Dye-Job: Alice's hair was made black for some reason, while Wendy Darling and Tink switch hair colors so that Wendy's is blonde — presumably to provide some colour-coding to distinguish the main trio.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: The Wicked Witch of the West. Possibly the Queen of Hearts as well.
- An Axe to Grind: Jack's Weapon of Choice.
- Audible Sharpness: The Vorpal Sword. snk
- Barehanded Blade Block: Wendy Darling, of all people. But at least she cuts herself doing it...
- The Baroness: The Wicked Witch of the West, and, from the look of it, the Queen of Hearts.
- Batman Gambit: Captain Hook and The Witch manipulate Dorothy into teleporting them and the whole ship into Oz.
- Beam-O-War: One between Wicked West and Mary Poppins, interrupted by outside intervention.
- Big Bad: Captain Hook and/or The Wicked Witch of the West.
- Blade Below the Shoulder: Hook's namesake. He uses it both for sword fighting and cutting his steak...
- Boyish Short Hair: Wendy, most noticeably in the reboot: It's actually shorter than Dr Rutherford or "Lem"'s.
- Broken Bird: Alice.
- Cheshire Cat Grin: Naturally, any time the Trope Namer shows up.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: The Mad Hatter, appropriately enough.
- Cool Airship/Cool Ship: Hook's levitated pirate ship.
- Crossover Ship: In-Universe:
- Cut-and-Paste Comic: So very, very much.
- Cutting the Knot: Peter knocking out the keeper of the Vorpal Sword instead of answering the riddle.
- Notably, the answer to the riddle was "Punch", so in a way, Peter did answer it.
- Deadpan Snarker:
- The Cheshire Cat: Once, when he appears to give Wendy a hand, Wendy says something along the lines of "Holy crap, a talking cat," at which point the cat makes a sarcastic remark about her priorities. You can see his point.
- Alice has moments of this, though she's more likely to gleefully jump over the line between snarker and Jerkass.
- Defeat Means Friendship: Jack conscripting the Winkies, although it's strongly implied that they weren't especially fond of the Red Queen to start with. Hook's crew are a straighter example, particularly Mister Smee... Sorry, Captain Smee.
- Even Evil Has Standards: "Beating prisoners is 'bad form'..."
- Exactly What I Aimed At:
- Expo Speak Gag: Rutherford's Shout-Out to Mary Poppins:
"I've isolated a catalyst—sucrose! And if my calculations are correct, we'll only need a very small amount of it. Roughly a teaspoon."
- Fairy Companion: Tinker Bell.
- From a Single Cell: Apparently all witches can do this—West and Mary Poppins do so after meeeeltiiiing (and we even see it through a microscope).
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: When Peter Pan discovers puberty.
I've got all these weird feelings! What should I do? Alice:
I'm sure you'll get it all in hand
- Goomba Stomp: here.
- Hands-On Approach: Captain Hook teaching the Witch of The West to steer a ship. Despite, you know, the hook.
- I Believe I Can Fly: Everyone seems to work out some way of managing it — umbrella, ruby slippers, fairy dust or just plain magic.
- Immune to Bullets: "I'm a card. Poking holes in me won't kill me."
- Kick Them While They Are Down: After the Wicked Witch knocks out Wendy, she prepares to punch her again as a painful warning not to cross her.
- Kill It with Water: The Wicked Witch isn't personally vulnerable to water; rather, it has the same effect on any witch who happens to be in Oz — unfortunately no-one warned Mary Poppins.
- This actually helps with a Fridge Logic point from the original Oz: Just why did the Witch have buckets of witch-melting acid around? In case of Glinda!
- Kiss of Life: A mermaid gives Wendy one underwater.
- Knife Nut: Wendy Darling is apparently very attached to her throwing knives, but, while she fences all over the place, she has yet to throw a single knife in combat — the only time she's seen throwing them is while briefly practising in the first issue.
- Lady Swears-a-Lot: The Wicked Witch of the West, especially when fighting Mary Poppins, highlighting the contrast between them.
West: A blast of eldritch fire in your $%&@ing face!
Mary Poppins: Impudent girl.
- Limited Wardrobe: Most of the characters are limited to their Memetic Outfit, without which it would be near-impossible to tell them apart.
- Lost in Imitation: The comic's interpretation of Oz is clearly based entirely on the film version, with ruby slippers and a green witch.
- Magic A Is Magic A: Evidently magic works differently depending on where you are — in Oz, Mary Poppins is melted with a splash of water, which is apparently just what happens to witches who get wet in Oz; while in Neverland, splashing the Witch of the West with water has no effect, since it doesn't work that way there.
- Magical Nanny
- Magic Feather: Dorothy's ruby slippers. However, the slippers must possess some intrinsic power, since other characters can use them normally.
- Magic Mirror: Subverted — it turns out Alice has the power to walk through any mirror or reflective surface.
- The Magic Was Inside You All Along: The basis of the comic. All the plane-shifting experienced by the three heroines is down to their own powers, to Dorothy's surprise.
- Mama Bear: Mary Poppins.
- The Mean Brit: Alice.
- Mega Manning: Dorothy's shoes accomplish this whenever somebody else puts them on—they get the ability to use the abilities of who wore them last.
- Nice Hat: Hook's — the Mad Hatter thinks so when he loots it.
- And of course his own is fairly spectacular itself.
- Orphaned Series: According to the website, the comic is still on Series Hiatus... since 2008. The author has stated elsewhere that it's over, as he's given up drawing in favour of writing novels.
- Only Six Faces: Or, you know, only one face. The reboot fixes this problem thoroughly.
- Overnight Age-Up: Peter Pan gets a taste of some Wonderland berries, which cause him to grow bigger...and grow up. He's still got the same personality, mostly, but starts having physical urges he has absolutely no idea how to deal with.
Peter Pan: Say... Your body's got a real nice shape. You know that? And I especially like your chest! Wait a minute! Why is your chest so interesting all of a sudden?
- Parasol of Pain: Mary Poppins' seems to be capable of being a Magic Wand and Deflector Shield in addition to its Parasol Parachute and Snarky Non-Human Sidekick roles carried over from the film. And if all else fails, she can just batter you with it.
- Parasol Parachute
- Portal Picture: This being one of Poppins' abilities, she uses Dorothy's drawing of the Wicked Witch's castle as a portal to Oz.
- Portal Pool: Alice using her ability to cross reflective surfaces with a puddle of water.
- Power Trio
- The Professor: Ernest Rutherford.
- Scary Shiny Glasses: Played fairly straight with the aloof Rutherford, but a bit of a subversion with the affable Cloud Cuckoolander Mad Hatter.
- Sequel Hook: Since the fourth issue ends more or less happily for all parties involved, the planned (and never released) storyline teased in the final page could be considered a sequel to a self-contained story.
- Shipping: In-Universe; In addition to the Crossover Ship mentioned above, Peter Pan gets shrunken down and apparently hooks up with Tinker Bell. Impossible in canon but, given the circumstances here, totally believable.
- Smug Super: Mary Poppins. Take her "practically perfect in every way" attitude and imagine how it would appear to a rival magic user, and you can kinda see why the Witch finds her so frustrating.
- Stealth Pun: The answer to the riddle is given on the same page.
- Sword Fight
- Sky Pirates: Hook and crew branch out into this trope temporarily with the assistance of the Witch of the West.
- Sword of Plot Advancement: Alice and Peter's quest for the Vorpal Sword.
- Symbol Swearing
- Talk Like a Pirate: Hook's crew be doin' this unashamedly, but the good cap'n be a very posh-spoke gennleman indeed, yarr.
- Techno Babble (or is it Magi Babble?): Lemuel Gulliver suggests to Rutherford that they dilute the melted Mary Poppins with distilled water in order to remove impurities and help her regenerate.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: Welcome to Oz, witch!
- Throwing Your Sword Always Works: (Alice).
- Took a Level in Badass: All three of the girls: Wendy has acquired impressive fighting skills and can fly under her own power, Dorothy's been taught lateral thinking and knows how to punch, and Alice has become relentlessly pragmatic and knows exactly how to use Wonderland's items to her advantage.
- Unholy Matrimony: Captain Hook and the Wicked Witch of the West.
- The Unintelligible: Tinker Bell speaks in jingles, of all things. Lampshaded at one point by Wendy saying, "Slow down, I can't understand a word you're saying!"
- Up, Up and Away!: The flying monkeys.
- Visual Pun (also Stealth Pun): The answer to the Red Bishop's riddle is "Punch." Which is precisely what Peter does.
- We Need a Distraction: Alice provides a particularly honest one.
- The Worf Effect: Peter Pan seems to exist to prove how tough the Wicked Witch is.
- Wizard Duel: Mary Poppins versus the Wicked Witch of the West.
- You Fight Like a Cow: Jack and Hook:
. You'd make a good pirate. Jack:
Nice hook. You'd make a bad masseuse
All those pink hearts don't exactly inspire terror. Jack: ...Shut up