*Dramatic 90’s movie trailer voice* In the distant future, one man will face incredible odds, and actually write something. That man is me. The thing I will write is a blog pitting two of the most popular book series ever created against each other in a head-to-head battle. You can stop doing the dramatic 90’s voice now.
Hi everyone, I’m back with another head-to-head battle for you today, this time I’m tasked with pitting Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland against the IP juggernaut that is the Harry Potter series. I will be comparing the impact of the books, their influences on the world around us, and box office results from the movies these books inspired. All right let’s get into it.
In today’s world, everybody is a critic, I mean with Yelp and Rotten Tomatoes it’s never been easier for an unqualified person to share their opinions. With that being said, I’m going to be comparing real critics for this comparison of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll and the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: Lewis Carroll’s surreal and satirical masterpiece has earned immense critical acclaim. Literary critics and scholars have celebrated it as a timeless work of imaginative storytelling and a profound exploration of Victorian society. It is widely recognized as a classic of children’s literature and has left an enduring mark on the literary world.
Harry Potter Series: J.K. Rowling’s series has received substantial critical acclaim for its cultural impact and storytelling prowess. While it has garnered praise for its engaging narrative and character development, some critics have also offered nuanced analyses and occasional criticisms.
Winner: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – While Harry Potter was such a massive success that J.K. Rowling became richer than the late Queen of England, in the realm of critical acclaim within the literary world, money isn’t everything. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland emerges as the winner. Lewis Carroll’s work is celebrated as a literary classic with its enduring influence and profound themes.
Now, let’s delve into the linguistic impact of these fantastical worlds, including phrases and expressions they’ve introduced.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: Lewis Carroll’s work introduced phrases like “down the rabbit hole” and “mad as a hatter” into common usage, adding whimsy and eccentricity to everyday language.
Harry Potter Series: J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world contributed terms like “Muggle” and “Quidditch” to everyday language as well as a creative use of Latin for the names of spells. Winner: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Impact on language is an interesting one to compare here but when looked at seriously, and removing all rose-colored fan glasses, it’s clear that Lewis Carroll is the real winner here. While Rowling created more words, they are meaningless in our world. That’s not to say they won’t become part of our everyday language in the future, we will know that time has come when a politician uses the word “Muggle.”
Next, let’s examine the number of books published for each franchise.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: Lewis Carroll’s literary masterpiece has sold over 100 million copies worldwide, has been translated into more than 100 languages, and is available in over 300 editions.
Harry Potter Series: The Harry Potter series has sold over 500 million copies worldwide, becoming one of the best-selling book series in history. It has been translated into numerous languages, captivating readers of all ages.
Winner: Harry Potter – While this may seem unfair since I’m comparing two books to seven. Rowling’s first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher/Sorcerer’s Stone has sold over 120 million copies alone, beating out Alices Adventures in Wonderland by around 20 million. The immense popularity of the Harry Potter books, with over half a billion copies sold, secures its victory in this category. Perhaps if Lewis Carroll had been around during the internet era, these numbers would be different, but alas.
In this round, we compare the box office success of the Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Harry Potter adaptations.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: The film versions of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, specifically Disney’s 1951 adaptation and Tim Burton’s reimaginings, have seen considerable success at the box office. Burton’s 2010 and 2016 blockbusters grossed $1.3 billion combined.
Harry Potter Series: The Harry Potter film series raked in over $7.7 billion at the global box office, making it one of the highest-grossing film franchises in history.
Winner: Harry Potter – In terms of box office success, Harry Potter reigns supreme, its significant earnings landing it on the list of most successful film franchises of all time. Even if I were to add the top three grossing Alice in Wonderland film adaptations, it’s nowhere near $7.7 billion.
Let’s explore the theme park experiences inspired by each franchise.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: Various Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland-inspired theme park rides exist. Disney’s adaptations allow visitors to journey through the whimsical world of Wonderland, encountering characters and scenes from the book and animated film.
Harry Potter: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter has its own land at the Universal theme parks. Along with the immersive theming, there are cutting-edge rides, including, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, set within the Hogwarts Castle.
Winner: Harry Potter – In the realm of immersive theme park experiences, Harry Potter is the winner here, I’ve been on all the Alice in Wonderland rides at Disneyland as well as Hogsmeade at Universal Studios Hollywood. It’s no contest, the Harry Potter rides are leagues better than the ancient rides at Disneyland.
In this section, we’ll delve into the passionate and dedicated fan communities of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Harry Potter.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: The world of Wonderland has a devoted following of fans who admire its whimsical and nonsensical nature. Wonderland enthusiasts often participate in events like “un-birthday” parties, where they celebrate eccentricity and the absurdity of Wonderland comes to life. Because Alice in Wonderland is in the public domain, fans can create thousands of pop-up experiences around the globe.
Harry Potter: The Harry Potter series has one of the most dedicated and expansive fan communities in the world. Potterheads, as they’re affectionately known, gather at fan conventions, celebrate their Hogwarts houses, and even participate in real-life Quidditch tournaments. The series has inspired fan fiction, fan art, and an array of fan-generated content that keeps the magic alive long after the books and initial film series concluded.
Winner: Harry Potter – I’m about to make a blanket statement for the sake of satire (this is a warning that what I’m saying while carrying a smidgeon of truth, is a joke). I find that the best way to compare fanbases is to look at them from an outside perspective and whichever one seems dorkier to you is the bigger fanbase.
While Alice in Wonderland fans are a proud and tight-knit community, Potterheads, the dorks in this situation, are a much more fanatical group. Any group that has their own name is already… A lot. Where Alice fans will have tea parties, Potterheads, and this includes grown-ups, will run around chasing a “snitch” with a broomstick hiked up against their crotch. The amount of times someone has asked me, “What’s your Hogwarts house?” rivals that of me being asked about my astrology sign. How seriously I answer the question, just like with astrology, depends on how attractive I find you. Weirdly, I think the Alice fans should be okay with losing this one.
Amount of Insensitive Tweets by Author:
Lewis Carroll: Dead before the invention of the internet.
J.K. Rowling: A fair few…
Winner: Alice in Wonderland
Amount of Internet Quiz results that upset me:
Alice in Wonderland: 0
Harry Potter: 1. I’m a Hufflepuff!? Really?
Winner: Alice in Wonderland
Amount of times I’ve Been Paid to Write about the books:
Harry Potter: Including this article, one time
Alice in Wonderland: Including this article, more than one time.
Winner: Alice in Wonderland
Loser: Me (I’m kidding Frank please don’t fire me)
Tallying up all the points here we see that Harry Potter has four points to Alice in Wonderland’s five, making Alice in Wonderland the winner. What a close match! Now, I have a feeling that some Potterheads may be upset by the results. Perhaps you’re upset with the fact that the lightning round was a bit subjective.
Before you guys wave a stick in my face and say some Latin, allow me to smooth things over and explain my thought process a little bit. First off, they’re funny. Second, it’s not like my blog will tarnish J.K. Rowling’s reputation any more than she is doing herself. Third, I’m paid to write comedic blogs about Alice in Wonderland on a website about Alice in Wonderland, what did you think the result would be?
At the end of the day, I’m actually a fan of both IPs and because of that, I thought we could end this blog with a couple of mashups that both fans would love to see.
I hope you all enjoyed this blog! Are there any other IP match-ups you would like to see?
Jared Hoffman graduated from the American Film Institute with a degree in screenwriting. A Los Angeles native, his brand of comedy is satire stemming from the many different personalities and egos he has encountered throughout his life. As a lover of all things comedy, Jared is always working out new material and trying to make those around him laugh. His therapist claims this is a coping mechanism, but what does she know?