Western Animation / The Care Bears: Adventure in Wonderland


The Care Bears: Adventure in Wonderland (1987) is the third and final theatrical film in the Care Bears franchise.

The Care Bears are given a mission by The White Rabbit of Wonderland, who is Swift Heart's uncle. The Princess of Heart has gone missing, and the Succession Crisis will give an evil wizard the crown. The Care Bears go searching for her, but instead find a girl named Alice, who is a dead ringer for the Princess. She is convinced to impersonate the princess to stall for time while the Care Bears go searching for the real one.

Unfortunately, the wizard is on to this scheme, and hopes to expose Alice for what she is. It's up to Alice to prove her worth, and the Care Bears to find the real princess in time.

The plot basically has more in common with The Prisoner of Zenda than Alice in Wonderland.

The box office for this film was the lowest of the three, causing a fourth film, Care Bears Nutcracker Suite, to be a TV movie. There would be no further movies until Direct-to-Video films in the Turn of the Millennium. Incidentially, despite being the lowest grossing theatrical Care Bears film, it was distributed by the film distribution subsidiary of a Canadian movie theatre company, Cineplex Odeon (now known as Cineplex Entertainment).

The Care Bears: Adventure in Wonderland provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Adaptational Heroism: The Queen of Hearts, of all people, gets this.
  • Animated Musical
  • Bag of Kidnapping: Dim and Dum try to kidnap Alice this way; it looks like they succeed, but they get a pillow instead.
  • Canon Foreigner: There was no Wizard of Wonderland in the original story.
  • Captain Ersatz: Dim and Dum are blatant copies of Beastly. Dim even has the same voice.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Dim and Dum's fear of spiders is what enables the Cheshire Cat to provide a distraction long enough for Alice and the princess to switch places.
  • Damsel in Distress: Turns out that the Wonderland princess is being held captive by the Jabberwocky.
  • Deranged Animation: One frame during the wizard's song shows his face deformed to freaky proportions.
  • Digging to China: No one digs a hole, but a brief scene shows that Australia is upside-down.
  • Emergency Impersonation: After trying to find the princess, but finding a girl who looks just like her, they have Alice pretend to be the princess while the search continues.
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: Wonderland didn't have a princess in the books. It does here.
  • Everything's Better with Sparkles: When the princess revives dying plants, it's done with a shower of sparkles.
  • Evil Chancellor: The royal wizard, our Big Bad, abuses his authority in his quest to become king.
  • Garden Hose Squirt Surprise: Subverted in the credits. Bright Heart Raccoon is watering the flowers when the water stops. It turned out that Lotsa Heart Elephant had her foot on the hose which made the water stop, then she lifts her foot up again, causing the water to flow again. Bright Heart briefly looks in the hose before looking over to see Lotsa Heart walking away casually, just as the water squirts out of the hose while Bright Heart was holding it away from himself.
  • Great Big Book of Everything: The Book of Wonder. It holds the rules that govern Wonderland. The physical book is so large that two minions, Dim and Dum, struggle to carry it.
  • Green Thumb: A princess's touch has the power to revive dying plants.
  • Hair Decorations: The princess wears a red ribbon in her hair.
  • Hannibal Lecture: The wizard gives this to Alice, convinced she can't impersonate the Princess properly.
  • The Hat Makes the Man: The Mad Hatter's hats cause personality changes to the wearers.
  • Hypocrite: During his Villain Song, the Wizard goes on and on about how the insanity of Wonderland is not right and that it needs rules and order brought to it. He does this all while participating in the craziness, if not occasionally causing it.
  • Identical Stranger: Alice to the princess, leading to Body Double.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: The main characteristic of Alice.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father/Nephewism: Apparently the White Rabbit of Wonderland is Swift Heart Rabbit's uncle.
  • Nightmare Face: The wizard sports one for a brief second during his Villain Song.
  • No Name Given: Neither the Queen nor the Princess of Wonderland are known by anything other than their royal titles.
  • The Omniscient: The White Rabbit states that the Cheshire Cat knows everything that goes on in Wonderland.
  • Pimped-Out Dress: The Princess of Wonderland has quite a few of course, so does the queen.
  • Princess Classic: In Wonderland, a princess is so pure, there's a test for being a "true princess"... which a normal girl can apparently pass, provided she fails by doing the right thing.
  • Princesses Prefer Pink: The Wonderland princess has a pink dress (with purple trim) and royal cape, which rounds out her princess tropes.
  • Rampage from a Nail: The Jabberwocky, who's in a state of crankiness due to a thorn stuck in his paw. With the combined effort of everyone, the thorn is removed, inciting the Jabberwocky's Heel–Face Turn.
  • Reality Warper: The Cheshire Cat. It's actually quite impressive.
  • Samus Is a Girl: A minor example. Swift Heart Rabbit is apparently female, since the White Rabbit outright calls her his niece.
  • Save the Princess: The Care Bears set out to find the real Princess of Wonderland, while Alice undergoes training to impersonate her.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: When the wizard starts going into his Villainous Breakdown, Dim and Dum can be seen tiptoeing away with armloads of suitcases and a teddy bear.
  • Succession Crisis: Invoked by the wizard kidnapping the princess before her coronation.
  • Symbol Motif Clothing: Heart symbols decorate the regalia worn by the queen and princess of Wonderland. Even the Queen's cape has hearts on the white ermine trim. The princess's ermine cape has a heart-shaped clasp.
  • The Theme Park Version: Does this for Wonderland.
  • True Blue Femininity: One of the Princess's fancy dresses is bright blue.
  • Unicorn: Alice encounters an injured unicorn foal in the mountains while on her way back from retrieving the spring water she needs for her princess test. She gives the water to the unicorn instead... which, it turns out, was exactly the sort of thing she needed to do to pass.
  • Villain Song: "When I'm the King of Wonderland"
  • Voluntary Shapeshifter: The Cheshire Cat.