Alice Margatroid in Scarlet Weather Rhapsody
More Character Titles
Magic, operating puppets
|"Oh well, it doesn't matter if you really are youkai or not. I have the grimoire you're looking for. I am the magician you're looking for. Whether you are youkai or not. YOU ARE MY ENEMIES!" "Hyaaa!" — Alice Margatroid and the Three Fairies of Light (Strange and Bright Nature Deity Chapter 6)
Alice Margatroid (アリス・マーガトロイド Arisu Māgatoroido) is a doll-controlling magician who lives in her home in the Forest of Magic near the home of Marisa Kirisame. According to ZUN, Alice is kind of a special character in the series.
Alice made her first ever appearance of the fifth PC-98 Touhou Project game Mystic Square as the third stage boss and the Extra stage boss. Afterwards, with her canon completely remodelled, she appeared again as the third stage boss and midboss in the seventh work Perfect Cherry Blossom and as a playable character in Imperishable Night, along with being a playable partner in Subterranean Animism. She was a playable character in Immaterial and Missing Power and Scarlet Weather Rhapsody and was the Final boss of Cirno's scenario in Touhou Hisoutensoku. Additionally, she was a target on Stage 3 of Shoot the Bullet and has made a background appearance in Hopeless Masquerade.
She is a pure all-purpose-type magician youkai who lives in a western-style house in the Forest of Magic without strengths and weaknesses in attributes, but she fundamentally fights in style of manipulating her self-made dolls. With a personality that is indifferent to other people, she is attached to magic, and is usually confident but is also timid in one aspect.
In the games on the PC-98, she lived in Makai calling herself "The Magician of Makai" and had a black book that's called the "Grimoire of Alice". Makai was created by Shinki, along with its residents. She was also a magician that can control dolls. She also created her own "Wonderland" in Makai. In Perfect Cherry Blossom, she said, "at last, former friend, we meet again. Have you only brought me your life as a gift?" which can be considered to be something carried over from the PC-98 games, and ZUN himself said that it was the third time that they have fought.
According to Perfect Memento in Strict Sense, maybe since she was originally a human, even as a youkai, she has high understanding and friendship level to humans and presents a low danger level, and if someone gets lost in the Forest of Magic, she also gladly gives shelter upon arriving at her house. However, Alice's house is covered all over with dolls, and since she is not very eager for conversation, it seems like visitors immediately flee when there is something eerie. When she showed her hospitality was in Immaterial and Missing Power, when she led Sakuya Izayoi out of the forest, who had become lost. 
In chapters 5-6 of Strange and Bright Nature Deity, the Three Fairies of Light accidentally arrived at her house and Alice was hospitable to them, providing tea and cake. She seemed caring with the fairies.
She's attached to magic, but she is indifferent to other people. She doesn't perform the usual act of attacking humans like most youkai, but she unexpectedly likes fights and upon being challenged to battle, she gladly accepts. As she manipulates a great number of combat dolls, the fight is compelled to be highly outnumbered, making a difficult battle inevitable, but since she has her hands full with manipulating the dolls, that is her weakness.
She's an indoors type who was often alone, but in Perfect Memento in Strict Sense, the range of her place of activities is "any kind of place" in Gensokyo, she performs her share of intermingling with the village, appearing in front of people in times of festivals to exhibit her skills with dolls. In each ending of Imperishable Night and Immaterial and Missing Power, she participated in banquets at the Hakurei Shrine. In addition to things like "the frog dolls being popular," there have also been expressions that indicate that her dolls are well-received in the village. She also said things that hinted that she sometimes visits the library of the Scarlet Devil Mansion. She has an obsession with collecting things, especially magic items.
Unlike Marisa, Alice does not find it enjoyable to win battles with overwhelming power and is more interested in strategy, so she usually fights with power that is a little above that of the opponent and always holds back even if it means losing. It is because if she were defeated using her true strength, then there would be nothing left afterwards, which resembles Reimu Hakurei. It is unknown if this is fundamental to her personality, or if this is simply something she judged as an efficient strategy that her secret skills should not be shown.
Related to this, in Scarlet Weather Rhapsody, among the 15 characters, she did not have a cost 5 spell card, which might be an example of not showing her true strength. However, in Touhou Hisoutensoku, a cost 5 spell card was added. In the first place, since in Imperishable Night, she had a Last Word just like other characters, which were supposed to exemplify each of the characters' full strength, it does not mean that she never displays her full strength (with an appropriate spell card) no matter what the situation. On the other hand, it could also be that her last word spell card The Phantom of the Grand Guignol was actually still going easy.
In Immaterial and Missing Power, she kept avoiding the really strong characters, not fighting those like Remilia Scarlet and Yuyuko Saigyouji, spending her efforts to get to Suika Ibuki. It is unclear what state of mind she had at that time to do such a thing. Incidentally, it was the same in Scarlet Weather Rhapsody. Concerning this, she succeeded in her goal when she met Sakuya Izayoi, Patchouli Knowledge, and Youmu Konpaku, as she judged that it would a waste of effort to meet Remilia and Yuyuko, but she did engage in a battle with the powerful Yukari Yakumo. Additionally, she felt comfortable testing her Goliath Doll on Cirno in Touhou Hisoutensoku.
- Handling dolls
As her specialty is making dolls, she is also able to manipulate a great amount of dolls at the same time. This skill is among the finest in Gensokyo. She is able to make her dolls move pretty much any way humans can, and other than that she can make multiple dolls perform different actions, sometimes making them cooperate and sometimes making them move completely asynchronously, such that to onlookers around her, it might not seem like she is manipulating them. Due to this, Marisa Kirisame commented that "she said that she controls all the dolls herself, but that sounds like a whopper". The dolls can themselves manipulate and maybe even create other dolls, but it seems that Alice insists on creating new dolls herself. In chapter 5 of Strange and Bright Nature Deity, she gave a command to a doll orally, but at that time she was indoors while at the same time there were at least 12 dolls above the roof removing snow, and there were also some dolls inside the room cooking. At that time, the dolls have been portrayed as having emotion, in a cute way.
Although in common perception, it would seem obvious for the dolls to be able to talk, but there has been no mention of conversational ability. In some official material however, like Imperishable Night's Prologue and Strange and Bright Nature Deity chapter 5, Alice's dolls appear to be able to act and talk independently – someone adds in words in hiragana to Alice's words. In Marisa's B Ending in Subterranean Animism, it has been confirmed that the dolls do talk in katakana. Whether the dolls are talking due to manipulation by Alice or if half-automatic dolls are talking by themselves is a big mystery. However, according to her Perfect Memento in Strict Sense article, she hasn't yet succeeded in creating an independent doll, and a conversation between Marisa Kirisame and Rinnosuke Morichika in Curiosities of Lotus Asia chapter 16 suggests that Alice just controls the dolls and pretends they are alive for her own amusement and for showing off, but these talks were before the latter said game.
According to Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red, her objective is to make a completely autonomous doll that have their own thoughts and move by their own volition. Currently, when Alice gives a command to her dolls, they move as if they were autonomous, but she has to periodically give commands to them, and moreover it seems like she has not have had enough training in order to achieve it. In Touhou Hisoutensoku, she unleashes a move called "Semi-automaton". Because of that, it can be seen that the degree to which the ordinary Alice manipulates the dolls is clearly not all by herself. In order to perfect a completely autonomous doll, Alice does experiments, and the link to that with the "soul" is detailed.
However, according to her conversation with Youmu Konpaku, it was said that "the strings that attach the body and soul are the same as the ones that control dolls". If this is originally considered, then it could be asked, "isn't that which was put into the dolls Alice's own spirit?". It is not explained, for the dolls that she is experimenting with, if she needs to periodically give them magic power or if they are just fine without, and if they will move even if she does not give them any commands at all. However, in Touhou Hisoutensoku, Alice did say "it seems that it's more convenient to control the dolls myself than have dolls that think on their own".
Among Alice's famous skills, if the explanations of "Edo High-Explosive Pawn" and "Lemmings' Parade" are looked at, she also prepares her dolls for explosives. In Subterranean Animism, it seems that the dolls that she lent to Marisa Kirisame have been prepared with gunpowder, and due to this she objected to Marisa since they wouldn't survive in the Hell of Blazing Fires. Certainly in the game, the dolls didn't randomly explode. Also, in Magic Sign "Artful Sacrifice" as well as the skills "Volatile Doll", "Doll Cremation" and so on, she is able to put in magic power into the dolls to make them explode. It's unclear what the relation or difference is between the dolls that use gunpowder and the dolls with magic power put into them. One Lemmings' Parade consumes an enormous number of dolls, and since all the dolls are hand-made by Alice, to ordinary people, it would seem that without reason she returns her hard work to waste in an instant. However, it could be questioned as to whether Alice really adopted such a bad technique for such efficiency, and there is also the consideration that the dolls could merely be creating a blast from their explosion without scattering and dispersing, so that they are able to be collected again.
Shanghai and Hourai are the two most well-known dolls (or types of doll, rather) used by Alice. The Goliath Doll is another doll created by Alice, which appears to still be in the testing stages and is thought to be her strongest doll.
In Mystic Square Extra Stage, Alice appears with a black book with "Grimoire of Alice" written on it, from she recites spells. In Imperishable Night she appears with a black book with a writing that possibly spells out "Grimoire". This is some evidence that the book is possibly the same Grimoire which Alice used in the Extra Stage. However, in latter games and in Immaterial and Missing Power she appears with a book with a black cover without nothing written. It's not sure if it's a different book or not, but it's known she stills has it thanks to works as Strange and Bright Nature Deity, where she accuses the Three Fairies of Light of being the ones who are trying to steal it.
In her Imperishable Night profile, she is said to be a magician as a species, in contrast to Marisa, who is a human that practices magic. In Perfect Memento in Strict Sense, she is described as a magician youkai that used to be human and became a magician by using "abandon food" magic. It is unknown if she has also studied "abandon worms" magic to become a complete magician; without this magic, she would still possess a lifespan similar to humans. It is also said that she has only recently become a magician, and because of this, she apparently still continues human habits like eating and sleeping, despite them not being necessary.
ZUN states that he originally based her off Alice from Megami Tensei and Alice from Asura Blade. Of course, a major inspiration is also the titular protagonist of Lewis Carroll's famous novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland - the majority of enemies in Mystic Square's Extra Stage are card soldiers of the same type as those in the Walt Disney animated movie version of the novel. The title of the theme used in that stage also directly translates to "Alice in Wonderland".
Her full name is Alice Margatroid (アリス・マーガトロイド). She had no surname in Mystic Square. Her surname, Margatroid, is derived from a real surname, Murgatroyd. The inspiration is most likely Miss Murgatroyd from Agatha Christie's book A Murder is Announced. The Japanese transliteration of Murgatroyd is identical to Alice's surname, Maagatoroido (マーガトロイド), so it's possible the change in spelling is an error rather than deliberate. Murgatroyd is also a nickname for the vampire in Kim Newman's Anno Dracula. On a more interesting note, in the BBC Radio 4 adaptation of the previously mentioned Agatha Christie book, Alice Arnold was responsible for the role of Miss Murgatroyd.
Alice was first seen in Mystic Square wearing a pink/white dress with a blue apron, a matching headband with a ribbon on the side, as well as white socks. She has blonde hair and gold eyes like in all of her later appearances (except Perfect Cherry Blossom). Since the Extra Stage, she carries her signature grimoire.
In Perfect Cherry Blossom, she has blue eyes and has a red band in her hair. She wears a light blue dress with long white sleeves and two pink ribbons, one going round her neck and another one around her waist.
In Immaterial and Missing Power, Alice's sprites show her to have blue eyes, but they're gold in her portraits. Her book is wrapped up in a red ribbon, and she has strings on her fingers to control her dolls. She is also seen wearing black boots. Her sprites in Scarlet Weather Rhapsody and Touhou Hisoutensoku were unchanged.
- Mystic Square
Alice first appeared in Mystic Square. She showed up in the third stage as a young-looking magician with the title "Girl of Death". She confronted the heroine invading Makai (in fact, she was the first boss the heroine met after entering Makai), but was defeated.
She later appeared as "Alice of the Magic Land" in the Extra Stage and fought with five colours: red, blue, purple, green and yellow.
- Perfect Cherry Blossom
In Perfect Cherry Blossom, she did not have any special reason to fight the heorine, and it was only because she was there by chance that she became an opponent.
- Imperishable Night
In Imperishable Night, Alice visits Marisa to ask her to be her partner and solve the Moon incident. In their way to Eientei, Alice complained about how unserious Marisa was in all the game. At the end they face Kaguya Houraisan, who they defeat to end the incident.
- Subterranean Animism
- Immaterial and Missing Power
Alice goes investigate the abnormal mist and amount of festival that were taking place that summer. Patchouli Knowledge tells her to have a "nice, straightforward discussion" with the mist, which gives Alice a little hint. After defeating Youmu Konpaku and Yukari Yakumo, she faces the culprit, Suika Ibuki, and defeats her to solve the incident.
- Shoot the Bullet
- Scarlet Weather Rhapsody
Alice sees scarlet clouds and that the weather is very chaotic, and thinks that it's a prelude of an earthquake. However, it's not until she encounters Iku Nagae that she didn't face anyone who could confirm or not her hypothesis. Alice fights her thinking she is the culprit, but after being defeated, Iku argues that she is not the real culprit. It's not until some time later that she finds the real culprit and defeats her to end the incident.
- Touhou Hisoutensoku
In Touhou Hisoutensoku she created a giant doll, called the Goliath Doll. Marisa Kirisame noticed a figure in the Forest of Magic and told Cirno about it. Alice then tested it in a battle against Cirno, who thought the giant doll is Daidarabotchi.
- Hopeless Masquerade
- Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red
Alice was making straw effigies and nailing them to trees behind the Hakurei Shrine, what made Aya Shameimaru think that someone was cursing people. However, after some time, she could interview Alice and she explained that wasn't the case, as she only was doing that as part of her investigation to create a full independent doll.
In the interview, Alice claims that if anybody sees the ritual will be weaker and that if Aya could stay away from those dolls, it will perfect. When asked about why she wants to make an independent doll, she comments that long ago she saw something like that, and after that she started thinking ways to make one.
- Strange and Bright Nature Deity
In Strange and Bright Nature Deity, she provided help as inviting the Three Fairies of Light to her home and providing tea and cake. She told them, "if you got lost, then stay here until the snow goes away," brought some hot red tea, inquired if the room was cold, and also said "well, you should have gotten pretty cold walking outside, so you should just relax and warm up." However, afterwards, when Sunny Milk, in some random saying, said something which suggested of stealing the Grimoire, she became very angry and was ready to attack the fairies when some birds broke into her house and started biting the fairies. After they told her that they were really fairies, she said that it was not use to fight and leave them leave.
Marisa Kirisame is a fellow magician of the Forest of Magic. They were partners in Imperishable Night, and she was supporting Marisa in Subterranean Animism. Within the PC-98 canon, Alice met Marisa and that they fought during the events of Mystic Square, but the dialogues leaves open that they may've known each other earlier than that. They also fought each other in Perfect Cherry Blossom. It isn't official that Marisa has ever stolen anything from Alice.
In Imperishable Night, they've teamed up as a "bad relationship" combination. At that time the reason why Alice called out Marisa with her voice for this reason (incident resolution), is that it's only because they've become used to it. By the time of the events of Subterranean Animism, Alice sent Marisa to the Underworld saying that it was a "onsen-enjoyment game". Compared to the time of Imperishable Night they've had less arguments, which might mean their relationship is better.
She seems to have a rivalry of sorts with Marisa, with the two often insulting and fighting each other, yet teaming up on several occasions. For all the bickering the two go through, they seem to be close friends, as Alice once recommended Marisa's shop to the Three Fairies of Light when they needed some youkai extermination.
Shanghai and Hourai are the two most well-known dolls (or types of doll) used by Alice. The Goliath Doll is another doll created by Alice, which appears to still be in the testing stages and is thought to be her strongest doll.
At the end of Mystic Square, Mima takes Alice as her maid, releasing her some time later.
- Three Fairies of Light
In Strange and Bright Nature Deity, although they lied to Alice telling her that they weren't fairies who prank humans, at the end she decided that being bit by birds is enough and she let them leave her house without any grudge. Alice created dolls of the three fairies to poke at them during their second visit.
Alice purchases the Butterfly Dream Pill from Eirin.
Alice artwork from Perfect Cherry Blossom
Alice artwork from Immaterial and Missing Power
Alice artwork from Imperishable Night
Illustration of Alice in Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red
Alice from Who's Who of Humans & Youkai - Dusk Edition
Alice's sigil in The Grimoire of Marisa.
- Alice appeared on the cover of Mystic Square with a cat.
- Alice appeared in the Music Room background of Perfect Cherry Blossom.
- Being known as the "Seven-Colored Puppeteer" or "Rainbow Puppeteer", Alice apparently believes in a correlation between color and power. During her dialogue with Reimu Hakurei in Perfect Cherry Blossom, she asserts Reimu's powers are only equal to 28.5714% (or 2/7) of her own powers, due to Reimu's outfit only consisting of two colors. This appears to be a recurring theme in Perfect Cherry Blossom, as Yukari Yakumo, Ran Yakumo and Chen are all named after colors and have relative power equivalent to their colors' place on the visual spectrum. This, however, has not been referenced in recent games.
- Alice's alternate palette from Scarlet Weather Rhapsody resembles Hina-Ichigo, a doll from the manga series Rozen Maiden. In Touhou Hisoutensoku, she has palettes resembling the other Rozen Maiden dolls: Suiseiseki, Souseiseki, Suigintou, Shinku, Kanaria, and Kirakishou. Add the fact that, in Rozen Maiden, the aforementioned dolls are battling for the title of "Alice", the perfect doll.
- Alice is one of the two characters in the whole series who appears 3 times in a single stage: Twice as a midboss and the third as the actual boss of stage 3 in Perfect Cherry Blossom. The other is Seiran in Legacy of Lunatic Kingdom.
- Alice is one of the five characters in the whole series who appears as a boss two times in different stages of the same game: As the third and extra boss in Mystic Square. The others are Rika in Story of Eastern Wonderland, Yuuka Kazami in Lotus Land Story, Junko in Legacy of Lunatic Kingdom and Okina Matara in Hidden Star in Four Seasons.
- Alice seems to have connections with Dolls in Pseudo Paradise. One involves how one of the honest men died from being "nailed to a tree" despite being inside, which relates to Alice's article in Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red about her nailing straw effigies to trees. Others include how the men stumble upon a "Western-style building deep within the forest" and how the culprit was a "beautiful blonde girl".
- Alice has been a recurring customer of Eirin's, coming to see her to buy a medicine she developed called the Butterfly Dream Pill. The medicine guarantees its imbiber to have pleasant dreams once they fall asleep, and was even featured in an article in Aya's newspaper. The reason for purchasing this medicine or even what kinds of dreams Alice is trying to have were never revealed, but instead are left purely to speculation. However, this might be a reference to "Alice in Wonderland", from which the concept of her character is derived.
- In chapters 6 of Strange and Bright Nature Deity, Sunny Milk mentions that she's looking for a magician with a grimoire that "shines wonderfully with all the seven colors of the light". Alice does not deny this to be false. This might be the in-universe explanation for her title, "Seven-Colored Puppeteer".
- Perfect Memento in Strict Sense: Alice Margatroid
- PCB Music#Stage 3 Boss - Alice Margatroid's theme
- Immaterial and Missing Power: character profile
- Immaterial and Missing Power - Sakuya's Scenario
- Imperishable Night: キャラ設定.txt
- Immaterial and Missing Power: Match mode win quote (Alice beats Patchouli)
- Perfect Cherry Blossom - Character Settings.txt
- Immaterial and Missing Power - Alice's Scenario
- Mystic Square omake
- ZUN's E-mails
- Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red: Eirin Yagokoro
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