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Remember that odd little anime series that aired last January about mahou shoujo bunnygirls fighting to obtain a story about Alice? No? Well, I wouldn’t blame you. It was hardly the most exciting thing airing back then, with both Fate/stay Night and Mai-Otome on. But it seems the series was interesting enough to have the manga it was based on licensed by DrMaster and released in English, and due to it’s completely weird yet oddly gripping story, I decided to pick it up.

Key Princess Story: Eternal Alice Rondo, damn long title, is about Aruto Kirihara, an Alice enthusiast. As the name implies, he loves the Alice in Wonderland stories by Lewis Carrol, except in his world they were written by Alternative L. Takion, who is set up as the series’ antagonist. However, there is a third Alice story no one knows about, and if read can grant the reader’s wish. The only way to read it is to steal the pages of it from other Alice enthusiasts’ hearts. To do this, Alice users transform into bunnygirl themed battle outfits and fight eachother. Aruto meets one of these users, Arisugawa Arisu, who drags him into this world of Alice battles. She’s also the main romantic heroine. There’s also Aruto’s sister Kihara, who is also an Alice user and just wants to get into Aruto’s pants. Seriously, she insists they bath naked together every night, along with other suggestive things sisters shouldn’t do. Then there’s Kirika, Aruto’s buxom sempai and an Alice Researcher. That’s mainly the core cast as of V.1. If you followed the anime, you’ll notice that Kisa and her lesbian ways are absent. Sadly, she only appears in the first chapter.

So, Eternal Alice Rondo hardly has the most believable story ever, but there are a couple things to keep me interested. One, I enjoy the setting, which is a victorian-like european city, even though everyone’s name is Japanese, and I like all the references to the Alice books. It’s the victorian gothic fan in me. Two, watching bunnygirl mahou shoujo’s fighting eachother is always entertaining. The action isn’t all that great, kind of the wham, bam, what just happened; but it’s good enough for me. This series also has plenty of fanservice, some of it of the fetishy variety. The whole Aruto and his sexed up sister story is one of them, but you also see Aruto dress up as a trap, which is disturbingly cute (much like Impz). The series also seems to have a dark side to it I’m intrigued by. Later in the book an Alice user is killed by another by being stabbed in the heart with a letter opener. It’s a gruesome scene that appears out of place for a mostly light-hearted series. I remember reading some things about this series being dark, so I look forward to see what happens.

The artwork is suitable enough, if rather sketchy. It’d be nice if the backgrounds were more detailed. All the girls are moe/hawt in their own ways, and can be easily told apart. Never underestimate how important that is (I’m looking at you Claymore). This is the third DrMaster book I own, and I have to say I quite like them, or at least I like their presentation. The book is nicely bounded and printed with a full-color insert of Arisu. I liked how they kept the full Japanese title and just added the english one on the side. The inside cover also has flaps like a dustcover, but I don’t know why you would need them.

For those craving rich plots and detailed intrigue, you better look elsewhere, because Eternal Alice Rondo will be a mediocre series that fails all those expectations. I reccomend Monster for something deep. If your looking for a fluffy romantic shounen piece, and you don’t mind unrealistic plots, then flip through this next time your in a borders. It’s hardly the worst book you could get, and at the very least you can enjoy seeing trap Aruto. Admit it, you enjoy that stuff.

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I think this can describe the whole series so far.