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Was the recurrent musical reference to “Entry of the Gladiators” a conscious decision for this series?

Scritch the Cat

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You may not recognize that name, but it’s this song.  It has been appropriated as stereotypical circus music for a long time, and naturally it did show up in that capacity in this series.  What is odd, though, is that isn’t how it entered the Sonic series.  So far as I recall, this is the first song in the series to use that motif:

The other two I recall return it to it’s more familiar circus theme:

So I’m curious, is there anything about this motif that made Sonic composers want to use it a lot?  Was there an internal meme about it?  Also are there any such songs I missed?

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I think it's appearance in Mystic Cave was kind of a coincidence.  Like, everyone knows that song, it's iconic.  It's probably more a case that it wormed it's way into the composer's head and transformed into the catchy, spooky Mystic Cave hook we all know today, since I don't think there was really any reason to evoke a circus on that stage.  The other two are obvious, but the composers are over a decade apart and likely just independently decided to take reference to the famous circus song for the circus level, I don't think there was any intentional pattern.

Not really any different from a number of snow stages in the series evoking christmassy songs such as Jingle Bells.

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Me too, Also Entry of the gladiators is in the Public Domain so Everyone can use it so that is why Sega use the entry of the gladiators as a motif in the Music of Sonic 2, Sonic 3 and Shadow the Hedgehog and that explains why that it is a conscious decision of the Series.

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