Posted 09 March 2009 - 10:33 PM
Sonic the Hedgehog is an ongoing series of American comic books published by Archie Comics, featuring Sega's mascot video game character of the same name. The comic book series debuted in the United States at the beginning of 1993, two years after the release of the first video game in 1991 for the Sega Genesis. Spin-off publications from the comic include a Knuckles the Echidna series starring the titular character, which ran for 32 issues; 15 48-page "Super Specials"; 8 single 48-page special issues; and 4 short three-issue miniseries, each starring a character from the series. On September 21, 2005, Archie Comics started a new series based on the TV show Sonic X. In February 2009, the Sonic X series will be replaced by Sonic Universe, a direct spin-off of the parent comic, Sonic The Hedgehog.
Aside from the Sonic X series, all of Archie Comics' Sonic-related series take place in the same fictional universe. This universe features a mixture of characters, settings and storylines from the Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon, the Sonic video games by Sega, and various other incarnations of Sonic. It also includes many elements unique to the comic universe. While the ongoing game canon has influenced the comic canon, both exist as entirely different universes. Sonic the Hedgehog is not to be confused with Sonic the Comic, which ran in the UK and published more issues despite running for a shorter time (due to UK comics being published on more frequent schedule than in the US). As of February 2009, there have been 197 issues of the original Sonic the Hedgehog series. Also, the series was recognized by Guinness World Records as the longest running comic series based on a video game.
The main focus of the comic storyline is the title character, world-famous hero Sonic the Hedgehog. Sonic is endowed with super speed and a love of freedom, which puts him at odds with the nefarious Dr. Robotnik. Sonic is in many ways different from his game counterpart - in the comics, he is depicted as having important ties with his family and friends, a characteristic absent from other incarnations. He is also portrayed as having a deep sense of duty - in the games Sonic treats his ongoing conflict with Eggman as just an opportunity to have a fun time, whereas in the comic he holds a personal grudge against the Doctor and understands his ability to protect the world from this menace. Sometimes he does seem to have a fun time fighting Robotnik, but ultimately he seems to treat the ordeal seriously.
Although Sonic normally goes adventuring by himself in the video games (with the occasional company of other player characters), in the comic he is affiliated with the Freedom Fighters, a ragtag rebellion that was formed to counter the tyranny of Dr. Ivo Robotnik (currently known as "Eggman") and his legion of unquestioning, warlike robots. The basis of the original issues were designed to closely mirror the animated television series, as well as the names and likenesses of Sonic's allies in the Freedom Fighters. Since then, the series has integrated many elements from the video games, which has led to ongoing story arcs involving Shadow the Hedgehog and others.
At the beginning of the series the year was 3235, though by now it is approximately 3237. Sonic currently lives on Planet Mobius in New Mobotropolis. It was eventually revealed that Mobius is actually a future Earth (in an alternate reality), the year being 14,016 A.D. by the real-life calendar.
Originally, the date the Xorda attacked Earth was the year 0 by the Mobian calendar (sometime during the 21st century by our calendar), and that was known in Echidna theology as the first "Day of Fury". However, the date of the Xorda attack was retconned to have occurred roughly twelve thousand years ago from the current Mobian year.
The year 3237 was shown on Eggman's computer screen in issue #157.
At the onset of the series, Sonic's original home was Knothole Village, a secret woodland base hidden within the Great Forest. Other main areas of setting include Angel Island, Station Square, Downunda and New Megaopolis.
The original issues of the series and those soon to follow consisted mostly of isolated stories. That is, there was rarely any continuity between issues. However, there were the additions of new characters (such as Bunny Rabbot, Knuckles, and Super Sonic) that would become familiar and lasting faces as the series continued. The early issues featured much of Sonic versus Robotnik, in which Sonic would constantly foil Robotnik’s plans whether it be to tear down a forest or find the hidden location of Knothole Village. Eventually though, the issues started to gain a sense of an ongoing story, most notably with the addition of the Mecha Sonic storyline in issue #39, in which Sonic is transformed into a robotic form and does as Robotnik commands. This would later be concluded in a Sonic Special issue where Knuckles gives himself up to be transformed into a robot in order to defeat Mecha Sonic. From here, the storyline would be further developed into what is now a fully continuous one. Following the defeat of Mecha Sonic, the Freedom Fighters come together in issue #46 to discuss ways to attack and defeat Robotnik once and for all. The loyalty of many of the Freedom Fighters comes into question, particularly notable in a feud between Sonic and Geoffrey St. John, member of the Acorn Secret Service. This continues into the renowned EndGame saga which takes place over a four issue span, #47 through #50.
The saga begins with a mission by the Freedom Fighters and the Wolf Pack, led by Lupe, to attack Robotnik’s base. Princess Sally reveals thoughts of her father, King Acorn, telling her that it would soon become apparent that Sonic is a traitor. The mission proceeds and Sally is in need of help or she may fall to her death. The Freedom Fighters look on in despair when they think they see Sonic and assume that he will rescue the princess. Much to their surprise, Sonic aids Sally in falling to her death. The mission is called to retreat, and the Freedom Fighters move back to Knothole Village. Meanwhile, Sonic is seen battling Robotnik inside the base (when he apparently left Sally for dead). Robotnik escapes and Sonic leaves the base, wondering where the rest of his companions have gone. Sonic returns to Knothole, only to be arrested and spared the death penalty in light of all his services, so instead he is sentenced to life in prison on the Devil’s Gulag, where other notorious traitors such as Sleuth Doggy Dog (issue #42) will be imprisoned with him. While Sonic is being transported to the Gulag, Swatbots attack the vessel and it crash lands. Sonic remains conscious and takes the opportunity to escape. News bears word and King Acorn demands the recapture of Sonic by St. John. Sonic on the run, takes refuge in a cavern. Meanwhile, Bunny and Antoine discover that Drago (a member of the Wolf Pack) has been working with Robotnik in order to frame Sonic. This is followed by King Acorn issuing Robotnik as his new Warlord. Sonic, in the meantime, continues his run from St. John and the secret service with aid from Dulcy the Dragon. Robotnik reveals his duplicate of the king by making it self destruct and the true plan has become evident to all. All this would lead up to Sonic's return to Knothole in issue #50, where Sonic clears his name heads to a final showdown with Robotnik. As the issue notes, Sonic is uncharacteristically devoid of humor as he approaches Robotnik. In the battle, Robotnik’s Ultimate Annihilator crashes and the room is destined for destruction, but Robotnik and Sonic remain to fight. In the end, Sonic emerges victorious and Robotnik is wiped out. Sonic later revives Sally with a kiss.
Storylines continue to follow after the EndGame saga. Ixis Naugus makes his first appearance in issue #53. Although temporarily defeated, he would later return in issues #64 through #66, along with the appearance of Nate Morgan, former advisor of king Acorn, and Ixis would be defeated this time by Ultra Sonic, one of Sonic's transformations.
Issue #75 reveals that a robotic version of Robotnik has been functioning since after the defeat of the original Robotnik in issue #50. His presence is revealed by flashbacks to certain issues between issues #50 and #75. Sonic and the Freedom Fighters head to space to battle this Robo-Robotnik, and although they defeat him, there are many other Robo-Robotniks standing in line. These Robotniks are what has now become Sonic's familiar enemy, Eggman.
Sonic Adventure is readily adapted into the series with the appearance of Chaos, beginning in issue #79. The saga ends with Sonic successfully defeating Perfect Chaos, the final form of Chaos after absorbing all of the Chaos Emeralds, by transforming into Super Sonic in issue #84. Sonic does not actually destroy Chaos, as Chaos returns to his ancient beginnings to live in peace.
Issues #85 and #86 feature the return of Mecha Sonic (though not Sonic himself this time, but a totally separate machine.)
Sonic Adventure 2 comes into adaptation for one issue featuring Shadow the Hedgehog.
In issue #125, Sonic's latest battle leaves him stranded in space after saving Knothole. On Mobius, he is assumed to be dead. Sonic's journey through space leads up to many interesting story lines, such as the return of Super Sonic in issue #126, and Sonic's discovery that Tails' parents are still alive on a far off planet. Sonic returns in issue #130 where he reveals to everyone that he is indeed alive and well.
Issues #131 through #144 introduce a sub storyline in which the future of Mobius is the plot. In this future, Sonic is king of Knothole and married to Sally. Knuckles has attained the rank of Guardian and is married to Julie Su. However all is not well as the timeline is in danger of collapsing into destruction. Sonic and Knuckles try with the help of Rotor to prevent this catastrophe, but fail and the timeline and storyline come to an end.
Issue #145 features the return of Shadow, who then returns to take part of the storyline, frequently battling Sonic in issues #157 through #161.
Sonic was switched with evil sonic temporarily and got back and evil sonic was ruining his reputation around knothole. Sally was up to marriage for the kingdom and patch finallly put his plan in action. Sally and patch were about to get married until Sonic finnally convinced Prince Elias to come back and be king which he did and sonic defeated patch, figured it out, and got the real antoine back and sent patch back to moebius. Soon after he began dating fiona fox until his birthday when he found out she was cheating on him with his opposite the newly green evil sonic Scourge.
The Sonic the Hedgehog comic typically runs original storylines based around characters from various Sonic media, but it has also made a number of adaptations. For instance, it has adapted a couple episodes of Sonic the Hedgehog, as well as complete or partial adaptations of the following video games:
Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (#2)
Sonic Spinball (#6)
Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (#9) (also combined with Sonic 3 and Sonic & Knuckles for the Sonic-Quest mini-series)
Sonic the Hedgehog 3 (#13) (also combined with Sonic 2 and Sonic & Knuckles for the Sonic-Quest mini-series)
Sonic & Knuckles (Sonic & Knuckles Special) (also combined with Sonic 2 and Sonic 3 for the Sonic-Quest mini-series)
Sonic CD (#25)
SegaSonic the Hedgehog (Knuckles #26-28) (arcade game)
Sonic Triple Trouble (Sonic Triple Trouble Special)
Knuckles' Chaotix (Knuckles' Chaotix Special, and issues 138-141)
Sonic 3D Blast (Sonic Blast Special)
Sonic Adventure (Super Special #13, and issues 79-84, originally planned to be 78-83, and Knuckles issues 33-34 before it was cancelled after issue 32)
Sonic Shuffle (#92)
Sonic Adventure 2 (#98, SU#2 (?))
Sonic Rush (#160 & #161)
Sonic Riders (#163 & #164)
Shadow The Hedgehog (#171) (Shadow's origins)
Sonic Rush Adventure (#180)
Sonic and the Secret Rings (free comic made for the game)
Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood (#191)
Sonic Unleashed (#193)
Sonic and the Black Knight (#197)
Sonic the Hedgehog (TV series) Episodes:
Sonic the Hedgehog (Super Special #8, Episode: "Ghost Busted")
Sonic the Hedgehog (#113, Episode: "Cry of the Wolf")
Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie (#101)
Sonic the Hedgehog was originally published as a four issue mini-series, with the first issue labeled as "issue 0" and the second as "issue 1" (despite the note on issue 1 that it was the "first issue"). At the end of issue 3 (the fourth issue of the series), it was announced that Sonic would return in a regular series, and the next issue was published as "issue 1" of the regular series.
In addition to the main Sonic series, Archie Comics published various special issues. Longer than typical issues of the comic, these specials feature stories involving Sonic and other related characters. Several miniseries have also been published, featuring characters such as Sally, Tails and Knuckles.
Because of the popularity of the specials and Miniseries featuring Knuckles, in 1997 Knuckles the Echidna became an ongoing series. Knuckles's stories featured its own cast of Characters, including the Chaotix and Knuckles's romantic interest, Julie-Su. Like the Sonic comic, Knuckles's comic is filled with background information about Knuckles's family history. Knuckles's family has split into two factions: the Brotherhood of Guardians and the Dark Legion. Knuckles is a member of the former, and Julie-Su used to be a member of the latter. Much of the conflict of the comic surrounds the relations between these two warring factions.
In 1999, the series was cancelled, but the stories were continued in the pages of Sonic the Hedgehog. After Knuckles's cancellation and until issue 125, a typical issue of Sonic included a Sonic story and a Knuckles story, sometimes even including a third story. This led to each story getting considerably less space than it previously had. Recently, Knuckles's appearances have been infrequent but his story continues within Sonic's stories.
The creators also have a comic strip similar to those found in a newspaper at the end of some issues called Off-Panel. Off-Panel was in every issue for a long time and continues infrequently in the comic series. The strips parody the lives of the editor and the writers as they walk around the office and interact with characters from the comic in various ways.