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The Catch-22 of Sonic as a Theatrical Hero

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Well being a good movie and being a profitable movie are two different things in the end.

This.

 

There's tons of great movies that flopped at the box office, and heck there's tons of atrocious movies that do great, such as the Twilight movies. How good a movie is is not related to how much money it ends up making.

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Scott Pilgrim was a great movie yet bombed at the box office. 

 

Like I said, the quality is subjective. The point I was making is that what works for a video game won't necessarily work for the big screen.

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Anyway, I don't think a Sonic movie cannot work; I just think some things would have to inevitably be changed in the midst of adaptation so they're actually better suited for film, namely giving Sonic more leeway to actually grow as a character throughout if he's gonna be the main protagonist. As I said before, hurting him can suffice as a low point, and it was used to some degree in the OVA, but honestly Sonic's never learned anything from getting his ass kicked, so it's not the best avenue of exploration to me.

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Anyway, I don't think a Sonic movie cannot work; I just think some things would have to inevitably be changed in the midst of adaptation so they're actually better suited for film, namely giving Sonic more leeway to actually grow as a character throughout if he's gonna be the main protagonist. As I said before, hurting him can suffice as a low point, and it was used to some degree in the OVA, but honestly Sonic's never learned anything from getting his ass kicked, so it's not the best avenue of exploration to me.

 

 

Well what do you think is an appropriate character arc for him without it going into Out of Character territory?

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Well, that's the issue innit? Sonic has no character issues or potential flaws that would facilitate classic film development. He never gives up no matter the circumstances, he works well enough with others often enough to justify calling him great at cooperation, and his personal ethics are hard to argue against without coming across an asshole. He has personal quirks that annoy others or make him a little goofy, but that's it, and all of this is due to the fact that he is, first and foremost, a game character which in some ways necessitates his personality.

 

My only stated solution was to turn his persistence into a veritable flaw in the context of a conflict against Eggman, in that his need to continue with his usual tactics- which have always worked beforehand a la every game ever- manifests themselves into consistent series of grave mistakes that jeopardize the mission (also due in part to the fact that Eggman finally wisens up and starts engineering competent guards against the gang), ending in close calls for his friends, which- along with his impatience- further justifies his need to continue trying to fight Eggman on their usual terms. Basically, the conflict for Sonic is that he would effectively need to face up to the possibility and deep-rooted fear that he could actually fail and lose everything important to him, which is something that has probably never crossed his mind in the games' universe because, well, why would it? After all, he always wins. It's out of character without being fully out of character, if that makes sense.

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Well, that's the issue innit? Sonic has no character issues or potential flaws that would facilitate classic film development. He never gives up no matter the circumstances, he works well enough with others often enough to justify calling him great at cooperation, and his personal ethics are hard to argue against without coming across an asshole. He has personal quirks that annoy others or make him a little goofy, but that's it, and all of this is due to the fact that he is, first and foremost, a game character which in some ways necessitates his personality.

 

My only stated solution was to turn his persistence into a veritable flaw in the context of a conflict against Eggman, in that his need to continue with his usual tactics- which have always worked beforehand a la every game ever- manifests themselves into consistent series of grave mistakes that jeopardize the mission (also due in part to the fact that Eggman finally wisens up and starts engineering competent guards against the gang), ending in close calls for his friends, which- along with his impatience- further justifies his need to continue trying to fight Eggman on their usual terms. Basically, the conflict for Sonic is that he would effectively need to face up to the possibility that he could actually fail and lose everything important to him, which is something that has probably never crossed his mind in the games' universe because, well, why would it? After all, he always wins. It's out of character without being fully out of character, if that makes sense.

 

So one of his greatest weaknesses is that he is predictable and tends to never vary his methods of dealing with his problems, thus leading to situations where it's actually inappropriate and backfires in his face?

 

EDIT: Or One size fits all mentality as I like to call it?

Edited by 743-E.D. Missile

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So one of his greatest weaknesses is that he is predictable and tends to never vary his methods of dealing with his problems, thus leading to situations where it's actually inappropriate and backfires in his face?

 

Pretty much. I mean, I figure the moment Eggman stops indicating glowing weak spots on his mechs is the moment where I'd start feasibly believing that Sonic could be toast in a one-on-one battle with him.

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While I think R&C doing well could very well stimulate a golden age of video game adaptions, I do understand that it needs to be done cautiously. While Iizuka expressed some openness to the idea of a Sonic movie in his interview with Rich Moore, I don't blame SEGA as a whole for being fairly conservative with regards to the issue.

 

SEGA will in particular have to allow for levels of character growth analogous to Sonic the Comic. As it stands Sonic doesn't lose, he never has had emotion cloud his values, he's very stale in terms of ability to grow. If they made a movie, it is a must they loosen the leash a bit and let the writers actually give him some flaws that can be improved. It makes for a more interesting story overall.

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Well, that's the issue innit? Sonic has no character issues or potential flaws that would facilitate classic film development. He never gives up no matter the circumstances, he works well enough with others often enough to justify calling him great at cooperation, and his personal ethics are hard to argue against without coming across an asshole. He has personal quirks that annoy others or make him a little goofy, but that's it, and all of this is due to the fact that he is, first and foremost, a game character which in some ways necessitates his personality.

 

My only stated solution was to turn his persistence into a veritable flaw in the context of a conflict against Eggman, in that his need to continue with his usual tactics- which have always worked beforehand a la every game ever- manifests themselves into consistent series of grave mistakes that jeopardize the mission (also due in part to the fact that Eggman finally wisens up and starts engineering competent guards against the gang), ending in close calls for his friends, which- along with his impatience- further justifies his need to continue trying to fight Eggman on their usual terms. Basically, the conflict for Sonic is that he would effectively need to face up to the possibility and deep-rooted fear that he could actually fail and lose everything important to him, which is something that has probably never crossed his mind in the games' universe because, well, why would it? After all, he always wins. It's out of character without being fully out of character, if that makes sense.

 

A Deconstruction of the cliches in the games essentially? That could work, its not really out of character in so much taking everything about the games and turning it on its head to facilitate character growth. Sega may have a tight leash around Sonic, but they've shown they're willing to give certain liberties such as Sonic losing, yes I know its not really utilized well in the plot, but that's pretty big for them to have their top mascot losing like that.

 

Personally I'd like to see this type of plot in the games as I feel it would get more attention there, but yea.

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Here are the Modern Sonic losses off the top of my head from the main titles:

 

Sonic Adventure - None really, he just portrays himself as a mature 15-year old in some scenes, but nothing drastic other than the city getting destroyed.

 

Sonic Adventure 2 - Shadow's "death" was his personal loss.

 

Sonic Heroes - No losses here (and it was the most boring of the 3 so far, at least when it comes to his own stories)

 

Sonic '06 - His virginity Obviously, his own life, even though it was a cheap plot move.

 

Sonic Unleashed - His defeat AS SUPER SONIC right at the beginning, and the loss of Chip as a constant companion at the end.

 

Sonic Colors - Didn't really lose per se, but having Tails mind-controlled AGAINST HIM did put a chip on his shoulder, no pun intended. It's clear if Eggman had enough juice, Tails would've turned into roadkill.

 

Sonic Generations - Early on, he gets owned, on his own birthday. You could say, for a second there, he lost his birthday, but time travels fix everything.

 

Sonic definitely has had its moments as of late. Sonic needs to be saved at least once; that would be the next logical step.

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Here are the Modern Sonic losses off the top of my head from the main titles:

 

Sonic Adventure - None really, he just portrays himself as a mature 15-year old in some scenes, but nothing drastic other than the city getting destroyed.

 

Sonic Adventure 2 - Shadow's "death" was his personal loss.

 

Sonic Heroes - No losses here (and it was the most boring of the 3 so far, at least when it comes to his own stories)

 

Sonic '06 - His virginity Obviously, his own life, even though it was a cheap plot move.

 

Sonic Unleashed - His defeat AS SUPER SONIC right at the beginning, and the loss of Chip as a constant companion at the end.

 

Sonic Colors - Didn't really lose per se, but having Tails mind-controlled AGAINST HIM did put a chip on his shoulder, no pun intended. It's clear if Eggman had enough juice, Tails would've turned into roadkill.

 

Sonic Generations - Early on, he gets owned, on his own birthday. You could say, for a second there, he lost his birthday, but time travels fix everything.

 

Sonic definitely has had its moments as of late. Sonic needs to be saved at least once; that would be the next logical step.

The problem isn't that he suffered a loss or not, but rather that he doesn't really change as a result of said loss, or even develop in any way. He just powers on through, which while admirable, is rather stale and boring when seen from a character point of view.

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Sonic Colors - Didn't really lose per se, but having Tails mind-controlled AGAINST HIM did put a chip on his shoulder, no pun intended. It's clear if Eggman had enough juice, Tails would've turned into roadkill.

I doubt Sonic would have been willing to use excessive force, considering how he was reluctant to even fight Tails in the first place. I think the worst he would have done is knock Tails out before taking him somewhere else to recover.

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I doubt Sonic would have been willing to use excessive force, considering how he was reluctant to even fight Tails in the first place. I think the worst he would have done is knock Tails out before taking him somewhere else to recover.

 

Well that wasn't really the point, but rather Sonic is forced to fight against not only his best friend but his surrogate little brother. And it obviously effected him somewhat considering how reluctant he was. Probably coulda led to something interesting if the entire thing wasn't dropped.

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I don't get the examples in the OP, Sonic's stubborness is indeed one thing that could prove a problem and end up with him needing his ass saved, he is indeed impatient as well which could easily exacerbate the situation as has been explained and end up with something kicking his ass enough for him to be very aware of the possibility of failure, that isn't 'out-of-character.'

 

He also doesn't look back really or think about how things can be done differently, shows he is almost never, if ever, critical about himself.Though indeed many people criticize that he doesn't seem to learn from mistakes,( but I do wonder a little what is expected to happen, habits die hard, I'm not discrediting the critisism as such,it's just some explanation will help.)

 

Edited so my dumb stuff doesn't haunt me throughout the whole topic.

Edited by Amomynous

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As for 'losing' or giving up, in the game context that would likely mean a main character dies, Sonic dies, or everyone's stuck in Robotnik-owned hell for the rest of their lives, this is why Sonic never loses. If you really want it to 'last' so that it's effect on Sonic is permanant, it will permanantly remove big part of the series.

Actually, no it doesn't. Losing isn't strictly defined to such extremities of "Winning hero lives; losing hero dies", and you should know this as much as anyone else.

 

Not every instance of losing has a character dying, with the finest example being the first 5 minutes of Unleashed where Sonic loses to Eggman while in his super state. In other words it's a temporary setback that encourages the hero to be more careful in the event that it happens again.

 

And hell, even if the hero were to die, they can still win via Heroic Sacrifice (which we won't see Sonic do, but it's worth noting that you shouldn't treat these things so black and white).

I guess it's possible reframe what constitutes 'losing' but how exactly?

A temporary setback? Like I just said?

 

Really, it's no more simple than him losing a fight and having the victor walk off in triumph. A hero doesn't need to win every single thing he does.

Edited by ChaosSupremeSonîc

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^Ok, my bad, I was being kind of dumb, not only my point on what constitutes losing, but bringing in something to save Sonic (like Chip) could solve the problem if the loss would otherwise be fatal, even though I mentioned him being saved earlier.

Edited by Amomynous

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The "Save Sonic" concept that I thought of was not a simple "Jump In Front of a Bullet" one.

 

I meant Sonic gets trapped, and someone comes to rescue him. Not a 5-second issue at all.

 

In other words, Sonic is way too invincible and undefeatable. Why does he even need Super Sonic when his default form is Plot Sonic?

 

I would like to see the other characters go "hooooooooooooly shit... Sonic's in prison man! We gotta come up with a rescue plan," and then it turns into a design not unlike Cannon's Core. Edit: Prison Island was a joke of a plot; Sonic could've totally made off, he just wanted to take a break.

 

I think my favorite scene in SA2 is when Eggman comes up with the Cannon's Core plan where everyone has a purpose (minus Shadow) to take care of business. Imagine that for rescuing Sonic, and it's a win-win, because not only it's a golden opportunity to give value to the rest of the cast, but also it still proves that Sonic is still better than them. If he was part of plan to rescue someone, he probably would do most, if not all, of it himself.

Edited by Cinos of Exodar

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I wanna note something about the OP. Being "Out of Character" isn't necessarily a bad thing. Changing the way a character normally acts is a good way to show far things can go to shit. Sonic giving up and showing fear would be one of the shocking things ever, the important thing is the context.

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