BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 8 – Croquet with the Queen: Now Alice has finally found the beautiful garden she gets to play croquet with the Queen. Is it possible to play croquet with a hedgehog as a ball? And if the Queen wants to chop off everyone’s head, is Alice in danger?
Hello! After all her adventures, Alice has finally found the beautiful garden she’s been looking for all this time. It’s full of beautiful white roses. Alice wandered through the flowers until she saw a gardener. He was doing something very strange…
Why are you painting the roses red?
The Queen – she wants red roses and I put white roses in by mistake. If the Queen finds them, she’ll cut my head off! Oh no! Here comes the Queen!
The gardener threw himself to the ground and lay with his face down. A line of soldiers and courtiers came marching into the rose garden. They didn’t look like people at all. They looked exactly like playing cards: their bodies were square and flat with their heads at the top and their hands and feet in the four corners. First came a group of ten soldiers, who were decorated with black clubs, then came ten of the Queen’s servants, who were covered in red diamonds. Then came all the princes and princesses, wearing red hearts. The Knave of Hearts was carrying a crown on a cushion, and last of all came the King and Queen of Hearts. When they got to Alice, everybody stopped. The Queen looked at Alice.
Who is this?
I’m Alice, Your Majesty.
Can you play croquet?
Come on then! Everyone get to your places!
I’m over here… Are you over there? This is place, no this is your place, are we ready?
Everyone began running in different directions until they got into place and the game began. It was a very curious game: everything seemed to be alive! The balls were hedgehogs and the croquet mallets were flamingos. All the playing-card-soldiers bent over so they looked like arches. The players had to catch the flamingos first, which wasn’t easy because they kept flying away. When the flamingos were caught, each player held their flamingo tightly under one arm, with the long neck and head hanging down to the ground. Then the hedgehogs curled up into spiky balls – and the players used the flamingos’ heads to hit the hedgehogs so that they rolled through the playing-card soldier arches.
Is it my turn? Oh good shot! Have another go… oh do stand still! Very nicely played, it’s your turn again, very good, etc…
What a curious game! I suppose I should play.
It was a very curious game! There didn’t seem to be any rules. Everyone played at the same time and the hedgehogs kept running away. Alice took a flamingo and tried to hit a hedgehog with it. But the flamingo moved its head and she missed. Soon the players began arguing and fighting for the hedgehogs and the Queen went around stamping her feet and shouting at everyone.
Off with your head! Off with her head!
No it isn’t your turn! That’s my ball, give me my hedgehog! It’s my turn, not yours! Is that my flamingo? That’s cheating!
How will I get out of here?
As Alice was looking around for a way to escape, suddenly the Cheshire-Cat appeared in the air. He wasn’t sitting on anything, he was just floating.
Are you enjoying the croquet?
No. I don’t think they play fairly at all. Everyone is arguing and there aren’t any rules.
How do you like the Queen?
Not at all! I suppose I should try to play or she might cut off my head!
Alice went to find her hedgehog. She found it having a fight with another one. While she was trying to pull the two animals apart, her flamingo flew away.
Oh dear! I’m not doing very well at this game. What will the Queen think?
Alice was right to worry. Most of the other players had made the Queen angry for one reason or another and the soldiers took them away one by one. Soon there were only the King, the Queen and Alice left in the game. The Queen turned to Alice.
You! Come here! Who were you talking to?
If you please, your Majesty…
The trial is starting! The trial is starting!
The trial! Oh good! I love trials! Come along!
Alice had no choice but to follow the Queen. We’ll leave her there for now. Next time. I’ll tell you all about the Knave of Hearts, the stolen jam tarts and what happened when Alice met the Hatter and The White Rabbit again. Goodbye.
Knave of Hearts
a playing card with a ‘face’ which has a value higher than 10 and lower than Queen
people who are in the army
people who travel with a King or Queen as their servants
the name you call a King or Queen when you talk to them
hedgehogs (singular: hedgehog)
small animals that are covered in spikes and roll up into a ball if they are in danger
flamingos (singular: flamingo)
a pink bird with a long neck that often stands on one leg when it is in water
arches (singular: arch)
a shape like half a circle or a bridge that starts and ends on the ground
when you are arrested, the police take you to a police station or to prison because they think you have committed a crime
the legal process where people look at evidence to decide if someone is guilty or innocent of a crime
the place where a trial happens
BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 8 – Croquet with the Queen (Transcript Video)
BBC Short Dramas – Alice in Wonderland
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 1
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 2
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 3
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 4
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 5
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 6
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 7
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 8
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 9
- BBC Short Dramas: Alice in Wonderland 10
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