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I think the main difference between Fleetway and Archie; the former deviated from the games, but still respected them at least. Like, they had things like Vector being the leader of the Chaotix, and Charmy being scatterbrained, long before they showed up in their modern incarnations. And more than anything, it was still about Sonic primarily. He was the main focus at the end of the day. 

Archie/SATAM seemed like it was interested in being anything BUT a Sonic comic, and Penders all but admitted that he was using the series as a launching point for his own ideas than anything relating to Sonic. And the series wasn't even about Sonic more often than not, but about the setting he was in. IT was about the politics and commentary than anything about Sonic. 

 

 

I know it's mostly in hindsight, but it really say something that the Archie really only started to get notability when Ian Flynn came on and actually started bringing the series closer to the video game series. 

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Give some credit to Archie 1-50 in that it was a generally consistent comic in terms of vision even if the tone could vary wildly. Had it ended there I could at least say that it was a good enough place to stop for the story being told. But it kept going, and just like Fleetway it just started to get wilder with no games to use as a guide.

But the big thing as you said is that Fleetway showed some respect to what the games were: action-games with a very straightforward plot of good and evil. Even within the SoA Bible narrative, they just got the spirit of Sonic and kept it focused.

Penders had no respect for the games, and turned the comics into his pseudo Star Trek fantasy. I mean, I can respect the fact that at first he kept the Star Trekky melodrama away from the main narrative when he tried getting that Knuckles series off the ground, but it was inevitable that the game elements were going to crop up back into the story he was FIGHTING to keep away from the games. Probably the worst moment was during that Sonic Adventure story when he ended up co-opting the whole narrative for his own thing.

Had SEGA been there to properly just say a simple, "no". He probably would have left sooner. Hell, it wasn't until SEGA started paying attention that he left and we didn't have infighting between writers anymore.

I bet you a good deal of people at SEGA didn't even remember these comics existed until they made the special features for the Mega Collection. That was probably the first time more than a few of the heads at SEGA even read what was inside those book.

"Oh golly gee, these books sure have been around for a long time. Most license deals just end after a year or two. I wonder what is in these things that keep readers attention?" -SEGA Exec

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On 10/20/2020 at 5:12 PM, Shadow Chaos Control said:

This was an issue I wish I had gotten. 

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I had Mecha Madness which was Sonic being roboticized as well as Knuckles. In Mecha Madness Sally was so cruel towards Sonic, what the issue NO 29 after Mecha Madness or before? If before, you’d think Sally would have understood why Sonic as Mecha Sonic had no control of himself. 

This is generally something that bogs down Sally's likeability throughout the entire comic from start to finish. That she is an ENORMOUS hypocrite and she is never really called out on it even once. Like yeah, it is relatable, sometimes it's harder to practice than to preach, especially when the decision making and sacrifices are on YOUR end instead of someone you care about, but you'd think at least ONE time she'd get her similarities to the person she was constantly chiding thrown back at her.

Even then, yeah, Sonic has a habit of being condemned rather easily by his allies. True a lot of these situations ARE pretty elaborate, but the Freedom Fighters went through some of these themselves. They ALL got framed by evil counterparts or duplicates, they know this world and its villains are THAT elaborate, but yet with Sonic, nope, he's turned evil. At least Knuckles is called out for being a gullible asswipe.

For a comic that thrives of continuity and a band of friends that identify with each other, this really sticks out like a sore thumb. That these guys really just cannot relate A with B when it comes to them and someone else. Generally the only exceptions are ones that became meme-worthy enough that the writers had to acknowledge their contradictions (eg. Rotor concerning fire arms).

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23 hours ago, VisionaryofSUPER said:

I think it isn't really the leniency, as much as it was absent-mindedness. SEGA clearly didn't care because this was just another random license deal that they probably didn't expect would have so much staying power. 

SEGA let this all slide because they were thinking like most game companies during the 90s: this is just another way to get kids to buy the video games, or to see Sonic where they normally wouldn't. The actual content or quality really didn't matter. 

And, in the hands of talented writers and artists (The STC crew) this can work well. But less than that and you can get some stupid stuff that clearly doesn't gel with your franchise.

 

I agree.  Sometimes it's best if executive meddling does occur because you don't want the stories to get too out of hand and when that happens, the readers become frustrated with the story lines or confused at what's going on.  I will admit that while Archie's Sonic had some interesting stories over its run, there were some stories that just didn't make any sense and I think that if they had a better handling over the stories, it wouldn't have gotten so out of control.

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On 11/17/2020 at 4:39 PM, Ryannumber1gamer said:

OH, and while I remember, adding onto the love triangle and school stuff I mentioned, even the attempts to lean the series more towards anime is likely editorial. TKP has a good explanation here:

https://thankskenpenders.tumblr.com/post/185776905759/we-have-reached-one-of-the-most-hated-status-quo

But for the quick version, there's an earlier version of the cover that doesn't have the anime inspiration, and just drew the characters normally: 

latest?cb=20150225175646

So yeah. Bollers added a lot of super weird stuff in his run, but there's a lot to imply that this was all just one big super dumb editorial change in order to make Archie Sonic appeal to the rise of anime and manga around SA2's release (which would've just been around the sweet spot of Toonami and DBZ's rise).

Which is interesting as it’s a sound idea on paper looking back, and probably would’ve worked under better circumstances.

Maybe not all of it tho, but then you can only have so much control before an editor tells you to do something else I suppose. (*Looks at World’s Unite*)

 

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Spoiler
On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

The issue begins with Sonic and Tails barely holding off on a meeting with the fucking president because they’re busy playing a video game, which is amazing.

More of this. More of Sonic spacing on poltics please.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Anyway, Tails spots a waterfall and then goes through it to enter a cave and meet up with Dulcy the Dragon. Oh hooray. Remember her? That character with the magic power to tell if someone’s lying that everyone knew about but didn’t decide to consult her on at all when they suspected Sonic of having killed Sally? That character that, whenever people talk about bringing back the Freedom Fighters, I’ve seen no one ever bring up? Not even once? She’s back!

I have a friend who legitimately forgets she's even in the book until she's brought up.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Dulcy approaches her mate to tell him to stop and gets a face full of domestic abuse via tail thwacking out of the cave…!

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I know I don't have great opinions about what should and shouldn't be in a Sonic comic but I'm sorry domestic abuse should absolutely not be in a Sonic comic. This is a heavy subject and quite frankly one that Sonic The Fucking Hedgehog feels a little ill equipped to handle.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Granted, so far, this isn't the worst way I’ve seen this done. Anyone who watched that awful episode of Family Guy where Quagmire’s sister was getting into domestic abuse trouble can attest to that.Yeah let’s take the character who’s whole gimmick is disrespecting woman and using them as sex objects and have him give his sister a lecture and a speech about how she needs to better respect herself. That’ll go over well.

Oh, yeah no there are way worse examples of how this could be done it's just the over all oddity of doing a story about Dulcy the silly dragon voiced by Cree Summer who crashes into shit and babbles about her mom in her delirium being in an abusive relationship that elevates this into sheer what the fuck territory.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

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Jesus Christ Ken. Write. Like. A. Human!

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Back to that scene of Lara-Su meeting up with Remington she tells him her name is Jani-Ca. Apparently telling them her real name would “sound the alarm” as she puts it but I don’t know why.

"Wait you have Su in your name? Just like Julie-Su. You're her and Knuckles future daughter! It makes perfect sense and is definitely the conclusion anyone would jump to!" I guess it's going for the logic of Marty McFly going by Calvin Klein even though he still called himself Marty.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Dawn Best’s art is the only thing making this bearable so far. I’m happy he’s got a good artist working on his crap at least.

Unrealted to anything but she's a nurse nowadays. I'm friends with her on Facebook.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Ron Lim can only seem to draw well when it comes to Eggman and even then only really when it comes to close ups.

QyAIhLVuh2nYtWo-g-VONmabJZfQnK9vhzectSlaO9Bp9YnJG17V5FFDPc4zzXMGD9VWO3Vc8uwZA9ddygGzUKsw3LslQ_TQKUX1ZUwdBAACDndhphspbt-MfIJCFjxXGTH_zHoK

That's not Ron Lim. That's Axer. I belive most if not all the frontpieces are Axer's work.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

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Not to sound crass or anything but Ron did you just not look at SatAM Robotnik at all because why else would you draw him with a ballsack for a chin? I don't even like SatAM Robotnik's design but good lord how do you screw up this bad?

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

They pointlessly get him checked out by Doctor Quack to see if he’s the real original Robotnik and when they confirm that he is, they offer him the shelter that he wanted… not through a prison cell but through shenanigans you’d see in the Sonic Boom cartoon.

JBmMT9Ue4ikSQR78QLQ-oG9H-H_nECYxxodu73Snwu4VrYzkU9Mh4LyGAVZCtoZelTxeXq8BXfTTsZaQeC5cmk8IaLaZggXs24A1Tb8Q5R4N1YrrIVtcHh2TCepd9xeTCgI2ecjo

This literally was the second episode of Sonic Boom. Of course there it was actually funny.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Anyway, Robotnik says he’s homesick and wants to go home

Which makes no Goddamn sense. His ruse is that Eggman chased him out of Robotroplis. Sure maybe he's leading them into a trap but even then this plan is so poorly thought out. Do the Eggmen seriously think they're combined intelligence is enough? They're the same guy. They're going to equally have trouble dealing with Sonic.

 

On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2020 at 12:16 AM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

The idea that Bollers did this alias thing is hilarious but what I’m actually more interested in is the artist for this issue, Jeff Axer. This art is fucking magnificent. 

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I don't want this too come off as me trashing Jeff. The man is a great artist and his renders are phenomenal...that being said he suffers from a similar issues Pat Spaziante has in that I think his panel layouts are often too cramped. The Characters are to big for his panels and as a result it feels like there's barely any space.

I'm Back! I'm sure you missed my shitty attempts at humor and correcting like a shitty little neckbeard. Main reason I was gone is that I recently bought Christopher Eccleston-Matt Smith Doctor Who and was marathoning that most of the day.  

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On 11/19/2020 at 7:15 AM, E-122-Psi said:

This is generally something that bogs down Sally's likeability throughout the entire comic from start to finish. That she is an ENORMOUS hypocrite and she is never really called out on it even once. Like yeah, it is relatable, sometimes it's harder to practice than to preach, especially when the decision making and sacrifices are on YOUR end instead of someone you care about, but you'd think at least ONE time she'd get her similarities to the person she was constantly chiding thrown back at her.

Even then, yeah, Sonic has a habit of being condemned rather easily by his allies. True a lot of these situations ARE pretty elaborate, but the Freedom Fighters went through some of these themselves. They ALL got framed by evil counterparts or duplicates, they know this world and its villains are THAT elaborate, but yet with Sonic, nope, he's turned evil. At least Knuckles is called out for being a gullible asswipe.

For a comic that thrives of continuity and a band of friends that identify with each other, this really sticks out like a sore thumb. That these guys really just cannot relate A with B when it comes to them and someone else. Generally the only exceptions are ones that became meme-worthy enough that the writers had to acknowledge their contradictions (eg. Rotor concerning fire arms).

I agree wholeheartedly with your assessment. Sally has no emoathy for Sonic and his roboticization. Sonic is deemed evil, when as you said Sally and other have been in samw position as Sonic. This always irked me about Sally, how harsh she is with Sonic, but understanding with everyone else. Honestly, Sonic should have turned his affections to Amy over Sally the ahem there is a word I will not use. 

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1 hour ago, Shadow Chaos Control said:

I agree wholeheartedly with your assessment. Sally has no emoathy for Sonic and his roboticization. Sonic is deemed evil, when as you said Sally and other have been in samw position as Sonic. This always irked me about Sally, how harsh she is with Sonic, but understanding with everyone else. Honestly, Sonic should have turned his affections to Amy over Sally the ahem there is a word I will not use. 

This was kinda the point in both the show and comics where the dynamic was 'Sonic and Sally bicker, Antoine bungles, and everyone else....exists'. As such it often felt like a designated dynamic where Sonic was that one 'naughty kid' in a group of 'good kids', with Sally the authority figure, with Sally's own petty 'not so different' side whitewashed over by this point (which was a problem because it was still ingrained to her character at times). Sally did have moments of being full of it around other characters though.

I feel like Mecha Madness maybe was supposed to play on this a little, with Sonic vindicating himself when everyone assumed he'd played up again (Sally at least apologised in the end of this one) but then it happened again, and again, AND AGAIN. Except Tails. Sweet loyal Tails nearly always believes Sonic.

From the first issue they made a point that Sally was an equally stubborn little shit in her worse moments, and yet they never really called her out on it or made her take a look in the damn mirror, which should have been REALLY vital to developing the two's chemistry.

I admit to taking interest in Sonic and Bunnie being terse with each other in the trial story, with Bunnie even weaponising herself. Maybe it's because temper was a foible they implied several times with Bunnie but we seldom saw it put into focus in a plot. The fact she kinda disappears halfway in and its not really resolved doesn't really play into her coming off as sympathetic though, like a lot of Sally's temper moments really. But Sally and Bunnie are 'good kids'. Only 'naughty kids' like Sonic and Knuckles get told off and made to realise when they're playing up. :P

Like early Antoine's pomposity and reboot Rotor's pragmatic arguments were the closest to them TRYING to play on some sort of fundamental contrasts between them and not just Sonic or outside characters (which they were usually made to be in the right about anyway).

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47 minutes ago, E-122-Psi said:

This was kinda the point in both the show and comics where the dynamic was 'Sonic and Sally bicker, Antoine bungles, and everyone else....exists'. As such it often felt like a designated dynamic where Sonic was that one 'naughty kid' in a group of 'good kids', with Sally the authority figure, with Sally's own petty 'not so different' side whitewashed over by this point (which was a problem because it was still ingrained to her character at times). Sally did have moments of being full of it around other characters though.

I feel like Mecha Madness maybe was supposed to play on this a little, with Sonic vindicating himself when everyone assumed he'd played up again (Sally at least apologised in the end of this one) but then it happened again, and again, AND AGAIN. Except Tails. Sweet loyal Tails nearly always believes Sonic.

From the first issue they made a point that Sally was an equally stubborn little shit in her worse moments, and yet they never really called her out on it or made her take a look in the damn mirror, which should have been REALLY vital to developing the two's chemistry.

I admit to taking interest in Sonic and Bunnie being terse with each other in the trial story, with Bunnie even weaponising herself. Maybe it's because temper was a foible they implied several times with Bunnie but we seldom saw it put into focus in a plot. The fact she kinda disappears halfway in and its not really resolved doesn't really play into her coming off as sympathetic though, like a lot of Sally's temper moments really. But Sally and Bunnie are 'good kids'. Only 'naughty kids' like Sonic and Knuckles get told off and made to realise when they're playing up. :P

Like early Antoine's pomposity and reboot Rotor's pragmatic arguments were the closest to them TRYING to play on some sort of fundamental contrasts between them and not just Sonic or outside characters (which they were usually made to be in the right about anyway).

Tails always believes, that is what I admire aboit him. I much preferred Sonic post-Adventure when he no longer was scapegoated by Sally and had aged enough to not be labeled “bad boy.” 

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5 minutes ago, Shadow Chaos Control said:

Tails always believes, that is what I admire aboit him. I much preferred Sonic post-Adventure when he no longer was scapegoated by Sally and had aged enough to not be labeled “bad boy.” 

Even then though they kept up that hypocritical side to Sally, that she could be reckless and yet still chide Sonic constantly and never once would they say 'Er aren't you doing the exact same thing as him?'. Hypocrites tend to only be sufferable if they get called out on it, and Sally NEVER was.

Even Ian within all his attempts to show Sally could acknowledge making mistakes, kept overlooking this trait of her's.

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Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #109: I Herd It Through the Pipeline

63ZUlvmuTrtjn5lsCogTtqESHrMnuM7gf-0YjaNtKnW7R6nOu2bkOwJutgbO39bj8BNUqQBO7dGCKG99jK-H1cbfBH8jygjnVB3WzGJQ8R3USQQWrV07l6SarRX4He2uP0ZmONGm

I like this cover. It’s very amusing and it uses big empty space efficiently. That’s the way to do it. “Ice-solation” is also a pun that works rather well. I’ve no clue what this is going to be about but I can only guess it may have something to do with that everlasting, never-ending plot line concerning Rotor’s fucking family.

Spoiler

 

It’s Karl Bollers disguised as Benny Lee on writing duty. Meanwhile we’re still being graced with Ron Lim’s art. I’m so not about it anymore.

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Oh no. Here it is. They’re doing that contrived bullshit where you, for some reason, assume that the person reading the comic book doesn’t know Sonic’s name and have to have him say his full name with a logo. I hate this so much. The only time I liked it was when the Sonic Boom comics made fun of this practice but even then I remember them running the joke into the ground after a while. 

Anyway, Rotor is sad about his family and… apparently, after all this time, Sonic somehow doesn’t KNOW about the situation with Rotor’s family??? How the fuck does he not know this? This plot has been going on for SO LONG. It has to have been years at this point right? How does Sonic not know? 

Well, Rotor sure is lucky that Sonic happened to find him moping about his family because when he hears this story for APPARENTLY THE FIRST TIME he’s just like “Oh… well, we can just use the Sword of Acorns to fix your family’s shitty hypnosis plot-line.”

So they go do that. End of part 1.

What the hell?

At the beginning of part two, they do the stupid logo thing again.

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Because of their desire to commit to this it means the beginning sentences of these parts will always sound awkward and strange. I can’t imagine anyone saying this dialogue, especially not someone who’s already familiar with Sonic and has been friends with him since he was a child. Why the hell is Rotor referring to him by his full name like this at this particular point? Is he his dad? Is he scolding him?

Honestly, even if he had said “Thanks to you, Sonic--” and continued on it still would have sounded off. Just say “Thank you Sonic.” and leave it at that. 

Anyway, Eggman is watching them use this submarine and in a humorous scene where he asks Snively why Sonic won’t leave him alone and before getting a full answer he just tosses something at his own monitor and breaks it for no reason, he commands Snively to send a robot snake after them.

So then a robot snake wraps itself around the submarine and starts to electrocute them. So then Rotor puts them in these weird escape pods that look like bubbles (or Egg Grapes) and launches them out into the sea.

End of part 2. 

Man. What a story, Mark.

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Again, the way this is set up doesn’t work. The two speech bubbles at the bottom need to be reversed in order for this to have any hope of flowing well. “Looks like a job for so and so--!” is usually said after whatever the problem so and so needs to be solved is spoken about. It’s weird when you do it the other way. Honestly, you shouldn’t do it at all because it’s hooky and dumb.

Or maybe that second speech bubble is supposed to be said first in this instance because it’s elevated slightly higher than the first one. That’s usually normal for a comic but placement still matters and the wrong placement can easily lead to confusion.

Also, I’m not sure why he’s having Rotor’s family do this when it’d probably be faster and more efficient to just use those Shadow Bots he has there. I know he wants to be cruel but there’s other ways to do that without having it be a boon on the plan you’re working on.

What is the plan? He’s mining for oil in the arctic. Oh no. 

Sonic and Bunnie make speeches as they beat up the Shadow Bots while Eggman whines at them through the TV until a snowball is thrown at it. Then when Sally is busy using the sword to unhypnotize Rotor’s family, Rotor uses some device of his to blow up the Oil rig.

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Are you satisfied? I bet you didn’t know that the ongoing Rotor plotline was leading to such a magnanimous conclusion where a completely new and different conflict concerning an oil rig we just heard about happens and is taken care of in a couple of pages. 

Search high and low for the point behind extending this plot line for as long as humanly possible and you won’t find it. They really wrote themselves into a corner here. They also didn’t do themselves any favors by taking the hypnosis away and then bringing the hypnosis back for no reason way back during the Adventure arc. Hell, this story only got extended because someone wrote a story about Rotor’s family being stuck on a floating ice block and said in a caption that the readers had to write in to see if they wanted it resolved.

I guess they expected the kids to care and were blindsided when they didn’t.

The story ends with someone making a “Chilly Dogs” joke because it’s cold and the busted screen with Eggman’s face on it shouting that he hates that hedgehog… even though Rotor’s the one who blew up the oil rig. I guess that’s just how Eggman rolls. If Sonic’s around, no matter what the others do, it’s only ever his fault.

Now, in between stories, Penders provided us with a family tree for Knuckles… and it’s amazing how it smacks you in the face with how embarrassing and overdone it is. It is so strange that Knuckles’ family has THIS intense a focus and THIS many people we need to know the names of compared to literally any other character in the series. Even the Acorn Family, who are allegedly supposed to be given more focus than Knuckles, aren’t given anything that looks like this--!

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This is ridiculous. I don’t even need to know this many connections to people in my own family. I think the thing that sells just how goofy this feels is the Julie-Su head saying that there are blank spaces for the people they haven’t introduced yet. 

These aren’t even all the echidnas too. That’s the truly pathetic part. My God.

I do also love how Lara-Su being Julie-Su and Knuckles’ daughter is being treated as a casual fact now. 

What’s next?

 

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #109: …The Crush!

Karl Bollers teams up with Jeff Axer again. YES! More good art please. 

Oh but I don’t like that title though.

Story begins with Mina spotting Sonic and trying to race after him but is grabbed by Sally when she’s about to fall flat on her face.

The two then actually get to talking. Finally.

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Yup. It still looks really good. Please do whatever you can to keep Jeff around. He’s my salvation!

So yeah, Mina is all bummed out because Sonic doesn’t seem to be into her. She even tells Sally that she kissed him and that he seemed more surprised than pleased by it. 

zp8aiKbE3MeYXDaQSzEjdqnR3d754PUkmmmm94dhko6oWrJXzKM_qGIfVQHjoSG-eyRIHUBcqthGYYKoiGzaIjfvSWCV7yYrv-IRgPL4zbuUuRmgpj5L87SgxOW_KFlif5Nx9KDB

Oh geez. She just learned a really obvious thing that she would have known long ago had she just asked either of them about it before this point. How embarrassing.

I don’t get romance, sure, but this just feels really dumb regardless. Like, I don’t think Sally is supposed to be so insufferably mean, moody, hypocritical, and emotionally unstable right? Or is she supposed to be this way and I just got the character wrong? I dunno. Maybe I should get around to watching SatAM to compare because she’s really not a good character in this comic in my opinion. 

This sounds harsh but I can’t help but feel this way after seeing how she’s been handled in this book. If all the stuff with King Max wasn’t enough, you got this stupid plot line where they whip out the old “I saw the guy I like kissing someone else but OOPS IT WAS A MISUNDERSTANDING ALL ALONG! Oh, if only I stuck around to catch the part where he pushed her away or, after leaving immediately, if only I had asked a question instead of marinating in an assumption I made based off a scene that I had one-second of context for. I’m done.”

You know what it reminds me of? All those types of female protagonists in anime that I hate. Like Kagome from Inuyasha or Sakura from Naruto. Just angry bitches who make assumptions and are huffy all the time and make me wonder why anyone would want to fall in love with them. Why can’t more of them just be fun? Or serious in a manner that doesn’t come with buckets of anger over the dumbest shit?

Julie-Su is the worst when it comes to that actually. She’s far worse than Sally in this love nonsense. Never forget that moment where Knuckles ran off to go see his dad and she reacted by screaming alone in her room and firing laser blasts into a picture of Knuckles on the wall. What a healthy and mentally stable thing to do. I want them to be together so much now. 

Well anyway, he’s an adorable scene of Sonic reading a story book to Tails.

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Awww~!

Of course it’s a fucking Knuckles comic though. Jesus Christ.

Anyway, Mina is told by Sally that Sonic’s a really cool, neat guy. To Sally’s credit, when she realizes she was wrong her reaction isn’t MORE anger. She relays to Mina (and to herself) what kind of person Sonic actually is and comes to the conclusion that she still hasn’t figured him out, despite that. This upsets Mina a bit but she tries to thank Sally for her help anyway, in yet another adorable scene.

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Mina’s a very endearing character. I wish they didn’t have to sully her with that earlier contrivance involving the kiss. It’s not a good thing to surprise people with kisses on the mouth. That’s a very bad thing to do, kids. If Archie isn’t gonna tell you then I will, goddammit.

Mina leaves and the issue ends with Sally smiling off into the distance.

So yeah. I can at least give credit to Bollers here for attempting to keep Sally as an individual who can see the error of her ways and move on. It’s tough because different writers coupled with editorial mandates and meddling tend to muddy the waters of quality control. She’s had her moments but at this point in the book’s life, Sally has not been handled well at all. Stuff like this only really shows flashes of her potential but sadly it only ever seems to stop at that. 

I’m really tired of only giving her focus when it’s time to talk about love or when it's time for her family drama to kick in. I don’t care about romance and I don’t care about the Acorn Kingdom so these two things being the only things she currently has going for her is a bit of an issue for me.

 

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #109: Reunification - The Conclusion

Gotta love it whenever a Ken Penders story has the word “conclusion” in the title. The only problem being that usually its an ending that leaves you with more questions than answers and often is never really worth it.

This story begins with Green Apple Knuckles getting shot with a gun and then falling down. Lara-Su rams into Remington, mistakenly believing he’s the one who was trying to shoot Knuckles. In actuality, Remington was trying to stop the guy who was actually trying to shoot Knuckles and Lara-Su just stopped that so… oops.

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Wow. It would seem as though Dimitri is actually attempting to… come to some sort of agreement? Odd. Perhaps having the Enerjak removed from him suppressed the craziness just a tad.

I feel even more comfortable in considering this when it's revealed that Lien-Da actually hired that crazy gunner to shoot at Dimitri just then and immediately high tails it out of there when it turns out her plan failed. I guess this is the start of the plotline of her wanting to be Grand Master.

Lara-Su contemplates how much it sucks that she got the details wrong because her mom told her that Remington shot Knuckles even though he didn’t… yet. 

Just saying, just because he didn’t do it now doesn’t mean he doesn’t do it later. Perhaps you just came to the wrong point in time Lara. Ever think about that?

Anyway, she spots Lien-Da talking to a sniper on the roof and knocks the sniper out before he can kill Julie-Su and some other target that isn’t named. She clearly has no qualms with messing with time still. Even after what just happened she just goes for it. 

Apparently the time stream has had enough of her meddling and takes her back to the future. Oh well.

Then Knuckles just gets up. 

Apparently, he was pretending to be dead so that he’d see how Dimitri would react and he was still willing to deal so… yeah. I guess Dimitri is just weirdly interested in actually integrating with society again. 

... It’s weird saying this but if this is true then that’s ACTUALLY kind of interesting to me.

Knuckles also says there’s a traitor in the Dark Legion but doesn’t say who because he apparently doesn’t know who yet. Somehow.

Back in the future, Lara-Su meets up with her mom and is given a proper explanation about what went down in her timeline. Apparently, Lara-Su experienced an alternate timeline, which if true, kind of goes against what I was led to believe was a stepping stone for stories concerning what Penders wanted to be the actual future of the book. But maybe THIS Lara-Su is an alternate timeline one and we focus on a different one in later stories? Ugh. You know, what, fuck it. I don’t even want to think about that.

We do get an explanation for why Knuckles didn’t get shot by Remington though.

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So the Evil Knuckles plotline actually existed within the book before that one Sonic Universe arc with Silver eh? I didn’t know that. I have a feeling that my understanding of that arc is going to be heavily altered the more I go into this book and finally have a clear understanding of where Ian was trying to go with it. I may end up liking it more that way.

Still, I have to say, this explanation is wrought with weirdness still.

For one, why the fuck would Julie-Su tell Lara-Su that Remington was the one who killed Knuckles? Even if it was a lie, why on Earth would your lie rely on an ally having killed him and not someone you hated like your evil sister or Eggman? Why would you choose Remington? What if your daughter decided to travel back in time and kill the man before he allegedly did the thing that he would never do?

Even more funny is how, if this Knuckles plot line is true for this timeline, it means Locke’s preemptive desire to stop the world from suffering a huge cataclysm failed so hard that it created one instead. Because he microwaved his baby to stop the world from going to shit, he treated his son like shit and then made his body go haywire to the point where the power overtook his brain and he turned evil, thus causing the thing he was trying to prevent because he had a bad dream that one time.

Locke’s the absolute worst and it’s astonishing that Penders loves him so much.

 

This is all very bland and stupid. The first story really feels like it only happened because someone at Archie was like “Yeah, I guess we should wrap that Rotor story up” and then just did it in the most half-assed way possible. It happened in a story so short that it was compiled in an issue that had two other stories in it instead of just one. What a fantastical waste of everyone’s time. 

The second story was good only really because of the art and how it worked towards getting Sally back on a more likeable track. She shouldn’t have been on the track she was in the first place but at least the ignorance of that dumb plot point is over now. Hopefully. 

The final story was more Penders garbage. Thank goodness the time travel wasn’t as confusing as it could have been and at least Dimitri is sufficiently interesting to me with his actions here. So there’s that.

 

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #110: Station Square Attacks!

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I certainly hope this isn’t another instance of a group of people who were previously established as being good turning to a bunch of assholes to fabricate conflict. The cover is fine. It’s often hard to make the covers where you show a bunch of characters on screens look dynamically pleasing to the eye for me. Yes, this type of cover happens more often than you’d think.

Spoiler

 

Our boy Bollers, credited as Benny Lee again, is once again teamed up with Ron Lim to deliver this three part story that takes over the majority of the issue. As mean as this sounds, I really wish these stories could switch artists.

It’s almost like the comic is taunting you. The credits page has a picture of Sonic and Tails that looks great and was obviously drawn by Axer.

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Then, the first page of the actual comic shows Sonic and Tails as how they’ll look throughout the majority of the issue.

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His arm looks like an actual stick. It’s kind of creepy.

Anyway, this scene happened because Uncle Chuck woke them up and told them that they’ve been summoned to Castle Acorn, 5 hours before breakfast, which would upset me to no end.

Thankfully, the news they get managed to chill my nerves on the intentions of Station Square here. Nicole has a transmission from the President who warns them that when they put the information on Eggman that they got from the Freedom Fighters into their Hal 9000 machine, it switched from defense to offense and decided, “This bitch be crazy! Time to send out the NUKES!” immediately.

So yeah, their city’s security system, O.T.I.S (Outer Threat Immobilization System)  just decided for them that Eggman’s got to go and has sent out a nuclear strike directly to Robotropolis.

Uh-oh.

Well, there goes the hope of ever reclaiming that city again. 

Sonic and Tails’ reaction?

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I’d like a Mondo Burger with a side of Mondo Ouch.

Anyway, Sonic immediately says after this that Robotropolis being destroyed is one thing but the environment is going to be poisoned when it hits. Poison isn’t fun.

The nukes have been launched and they’ve got twenty minutes before, as Ken Penders would say, “before it’s the big goodbye”.

Sally says it’s over… but of course, Sonic doesn’t agree and says “C’MON TAILS! LET’S GO STOP THE NEXT WORLD WAR!”

We cut to Robotropolis where after a brief scene of Eggman bossing a Shadow Bot around and in a rare bit of awesomeness, one of them talks back to Eggman with “You don’t have to tell us twice, Doctor Robotnik”. Eggman shouts, “I shouldn’t have to tell you ONCE you tin-plated--!” but then he’s interrupted by Snively who spots a scene that no doubt would capture both their attention and be burned within their renas for all eternity.

Sonic and Tails waving the white flag at their doorstep.

Of course, it’s not a flag of surrender but of a truce. Eggman says to buzz them in.

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God. It’s so jarring how good the Shadow Bots look juxtaposed with how bad Sonic and Tails look. Why is Tails taller than Sonic in that second panel? Come on.

I do tend to enjoy situations like this. It’s always lovely seeing the villain calm the fuck down and just talk with the hero every once in a while. I really enjoyed seeing that happen so often in Sonic X too. Of course, this is mostly for the sake of self-preservation on both their parts though when Eggman finds out what’s happening, he doesn’t take long to switch back into unrelenting asshole mode thanks to a plan Snively whispers into his ear.

He says that all he has to do is turn on his force field. 

I mean… yeah. 

Why should he have to stop the missiles for them when he can just protect his city and let Knothole be poisoned? Plus, both he and Snively are entirely metal so they don’t give a shit. 

Sonic and Tails plow through Shadow Bots to go try and stop the force field from being put up so that Eggman will have no choice but to shoot them down himself. Honestly, this is a pretty risky and dangerous plan. By the time he’d be forced to do that, they’d be too close anyway. If he shot them down, the explosion would have the same result, albeit, probably less destructive for Robotropolis. 

Still, after a brief scuffle in the control room, Sonic and Tails race out of there after having done nothing to the controls due to interference. It’s only then when Eggman is free of them that he manages to have time to turn the force field on and what happens is honestly a fairly clever solution.

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Eggman turns the force field on right as the nukes get within the perimeter of it, meaning that the missiles are trapped inside the impenetrable shield along with Robotropolis!

So basically, Sonic and Tails made it so that only Robotropolis suffers the fate of these nukes rather than have it be an equal annihilation. Hmph. Well, I say. How rude.

-Kb73BEleaZ2deGv9s-krvSTiI5WGSIuTRt-Bg5o7urxBfLdyrhm4lqLftqfd5sS5fPr-9SIZfy5TUDjgWaT0UTI8x6XsT3puzGVmrgBAo1W3s7rWYKtD9hn4qtBiNjfrPMIH1wD

Sonic goes on to say that when Eggman reminded him of the force field the plan switched to making sure the force field went up when the missiles got trapped inside. I guess the shield stays up even if the controls for it’s activation blow up too… or something.

It’s a very strange conclusion because there’s no contemplation from the characters about what just transpired aside from Tails realizing they can now, officially, never live in Robotropolis again. 

I would be more concerned about whether that was enough to kill Eggman and Snively.

Or perhaps, I’d ask about all the Robotized Overlanders that just got nuked to kingdom come in there. Sonic was so concerned with saving them before but I guess that plot line being done means it left his mind, as did Nate Morgan. 

Yeah, I guess Nate Morgan just blew up.

Huh.


Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #110: One For All

No Ken Penders this issue, thank God. It’s Bollers again with my new favorite artist, Jeff Axer. What a prize. 

I still haven’t seen a full story drawn by this guy where he gets to solely focus on Sonic and Tails yet. Sadly, it’s because he’s been relegated to the side stories which aren’t likely to have those two around much. We get more Sally for those who want it though.

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“There’s a disturbance in the source!”, she says.

So like… the source from the DC comics or are we talking a reworded Star Wars quote here? How many layers does this line work on?

Anyway, the sword, as you’ll no doubt remember, can talk. It starts to blab about how indeed, Robotropolis was destroyed. There’s no ambiguity there. It’s been nuked to atoms. 

Fucking hell.

What a thing to just randomly have happen when you buy the next issue of the book eh? I swear, stuff is just happening now.

Anyway, the sword explains all because it’s magic and all powerful and something.

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It’s got the universe inside of it. Honestly, that’s a fairly cool image in and of itself, even if what’s happening here is the kind of stuff I’m not too keen on.

Sally rejected the Source of All but the Source of All said “Nope. I’m bonding with you whether you like it or not” which is basically how Sally’s life just works now I guess.

Thankfully, the Pool of Tang was destroyed in the blast which is why I scarcely ever see Tang sold in stores anymore around here probably.

The Sword and the Crown are all that remain of it. 

You know… it IS kind of hilarious that this mystical, magical Source of All could be destroyed by nukes. I dunno, there’s just something about this that tickles me a bit. 

You can see past, present, and future but apparently you didn’t see your ass getting blown the fuck up now did ya?

The Sword… kind of starts to feel a bit villainous in these continuing pages a bit.

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Then again, it could be Penders from behind the scenes telling Bollers to inject more destiny bullshit into Sally’s future.

When Sally literally says “I don’t want to know the future” and the Sword’s response is “You have no choice” it paints a picture of even more agency being stolen from her.

Oh, I’m sorry. “Destiny.”

This book loves that fucking word doesn’t it? Well, no. I’m calling it what it is. 

Sally went into the Pool of Tang and decided she didn’t want anything to do with it. Now that decision is being reversed because the Pool of Tang said “Fuck your thoughts. I’m God and bitch, you’re not”. 

So now she’s being forced to deal with this against her will because that’s how she lives in this book. That’s how Knuckles lives in this book too and why it makes so much sense that they became friends and found so much in common with one another. 

There’s gotta be something they can do with Sally that’s both her own decision and something that doesn’t have to do with romance. I don’t care about her kingdom but it’s a large part of her character so I’d understand if that were the focus they’d want to stick to but can you at least do it in a way that gives her a say in the matter? Fuck destiny.

 

I’m not entirely sure what to make of this issue. This was an incredibly monumental sequence of events but the way it happens makes it feel like just another issue I read and it shouldn’t. The destruction of Robotropolis should feel like a much bigger deal than this. It should have more build up than this. No, instead it just happens through the actions of a third party. It almost feels like a waste of time caring about it up until this point.

Then the fucking sword takes this opportunity to tell Sally that she’s got no control over her life or her decisions going forward but this time it isn’t because of her dad, it’s because of the remaining magical bullshit that resides within it. This is just what her character needed more of right? For God’s sake.

 

Sonic X - Issue #16: Valentine’s Fray

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*Heavy sigh*

Yup… THIS fucking issue. My God. The last one was full of traced and copied art, sure, but THIS one I remember being far more blatant and obvious about it during the first half of the book when I read it. Why? Well, because this issue features the Chaotix so you’d best believe I had seen the images copied from Sonic X multiple times before I ever got around to reading this for the first time. Oh, I’m about to have myself a lovely time comparing and contrasting these images for you guys. It’ll take forever but it’s gonna be worth it just to get this silent rage off my chest.

Spoiler

 

What’s truly sad about this is that this is an issue written by our boy Ian Flynn and he actually managed to come up with a very adorable story to go along with it… but the art does everything in its power to ruin it by being a disgusting copy and paste extravaganza.

It begins with Amy fist pumping at the screen in celebration because Sonic agreed to take her out on a date. Chris checks to see if Sonic’s got a fever but he says that he doesn’t. It’s Valentine's Day so he figured he’d do something nice for her.

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Look at Sonic’s arms in that picture. They’re really gross and unsettling in how they’re drawn to look crossed right? Well, that’s because the original image didn’t have Sonic with his arms crossed here.

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So he had to wing it and he… managed to get them to cross…at least.

Then there’s the Tails image which is made to look like he’s upset at Sonic here thanks to the anime anger vein on his head but in actuality, he was waking up from being knocked unconscious in the show.

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It’s a very cute image and one I can see being used for reference but not in the manner it’s used here where all he did was flip the image horizontally and try to make it look like Tails was annoyed rather than confused and disoriented.

Lastly, there’s Chris who is looking down at Sonic eating some real food after his failed attempt to serve him cat food in the show.

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This game of “Spot the Copied Image” is very fun indeed. Again, it won’t be possible for me to find them all even if they’re super easy to spot due to pretty much every image being obviously lifted from the show though. Let us continue.

… No, wait,  I’m not done bitching about the art. One sec. Look at this next panel.

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Now, I remember vividly those images from the show despite not recalling which episode specifically they’re from but the truly odd thing about this image is Chris right behind Amy. Why is he making that face with his mouth open as though he’s scolding Sonic but there’s no dialogue coming out of his mouth? It’s incredibly distracting because you know that image was just put into the comic because he needed a picture of a slightly annoyed Chris but didn’t think through the body language of the image he has here so it just looks like he’s a mime.

So, anyway, Tails calls out Sonic on not knowing what to do for their date and then gets an idea.

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Some of the images in the bottom panel may have been properly drawn as they’re not all immediately recognizable to me but I still doubt it because of the horrible scaling. Look at how tiny Cream is on that couch. She’s not that far from Tails and Chris so she shouldn’t be THAT freakishly small. Also, Tails looks like a tiny little gremlin compared to Amy. I know Tails is shorter than Amy but not by that much.

*SIIIIIIIIIIGH*

Okay, so… here’s the part where when I read this comic for the first time years ago, I said “Fuck this comic” immediately. Like, I was stunned when I was looking through the pages and literally just saw art of the Chaotix just lifted wholesale from the show.

For, you see, the easiest episode to pin the Chaotix down on would be the one where they first appeared. Since it’s a lone episode in Season 2 it’s a pretty easy episode to find and lift images from. So that’s exactly what happened. 

Sonic decides that since he didn’t have a clue, he needed people who specialized in getting a clue so he goes to the Chaotix for advice on dating which is a monumental mistake from the get go. Vector is a near hopeless romantic in Sonic X and the other two members are Espio and Charmy so clearly this was a mistake.

The scene that follows would have been funny had it not made me so mad because of the art.

R4IbNrHoPs7ufL5zLAdE7vEh-_Nkdgf66jxZbv4kkEwsbGHyLL6Zv18hIeHzzwAk3tnlThIpi7wA13dwPJY3u4-SFb34L8spmQ5VWuj2tkFQubbnENiMbcOGeZEST7p9eRnZAJtZCeENhJuXyhlJlnGl1bUYL9W0QBacD44DKfwusb2PbAhf_FqA1Za6rEbsWUrpCP7cUaNIvDDG_qSiSfMR6uNZF0NadbGMW0j2lh5OZnvXJRk5FGHK4amzvlGaZn9k-ff0AL8ribl5

Even the papers on the desk and on the back board were copied down to where they’re positioned. For some reason, he removed the lamp though.

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Todd took a picture of Espio posing against a Japanese style backdrop that 4kids shockingly didn’t take out for looking foreign and was made to look as though he was lazily slumping over the desk instead.

j87JD028yldu7uhl3z_fs2EHZD-NlqaWC6sJjtM9Z0li0szLGlOLiZtD0NwygdcOvN2AmcJmBFi5uxhyyPChQ5UWrjtxadsM5epc2V4WArFcSsZ6RpnzTSIxpWcZ41y4RsHzllDjxTiVyfqzi0HsowCxe1A6ySIEVG8jm2j-RFosU7N1oxQ_3AGghW59UWFVnKc-oQrAScNEADdFbnQrb2FyK98n80T8SXEVy4XknO-RXXgjbxm8W6dig3aM7ZtFri-jq3Z0Xn8nzNFi

Aside from having his finger raised, Charmy’s coloring is all wrong here and I’m having trouble fathoming why. His eye lids are flesh colored. His weird shoulder bobbles are orange instead of black. His collar is the same color as his zipper instead of being white. The muffs of his helmet are orange on the sides instead of silver. Everything about this image unsettled me. It truly felt like I was reading some sort of bootleg comic.

In this image, Charmy is pointing out that Vector agreeing to help Sonic is going to be problematic because none of them have ever been on a date.

The result of him being too honest, like a kid would, is this.

t7VS7JRXykguneJlmd9qmtse0olG12Ex531StIY0GbcoJwaH6_Ue9yohq0QUFyUKg7QP7VQpiH3IkFzxDs7FKN3fiHYWSrUj8idKfOd8K36jxfSIfdvBMuigUhOd5j0TPLlzdYRn

Whoo boy. Look at that. The scaling has been off before but my God. Both Espio and Vector are holding onto Charmy at what looks to be a similar angle and yet, somehow, Vector is way behind the desk while Espio is monstrously huge. I guess that’s what happens when you awkwardly splice two disconnected images together like this.

Pts9AQS9zgoRJba1LhhiF8jZfQcYwOWGjROGDdXuX-TGCrHV5LQpNfLU2lG1_P0OGkvm5KJcXjBYAishwz52Q0FRlmVnaO3nvNbgylsO3d2KCHBlK-KwBKiyG2SA6V4maZur3teR1-ezbm9gJgWq0t32G3GYdPaB22ABwUs_4GJcQxXdRcORn_LLgn-43BEG5M6Px7TcUrr-QVoAvuWALeNrlrkLDOvoEQ3yRKQgsLlEbfr7XYn1thYvbkIQVsF8A7BV3L1qblzsu8Jg

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By the way, this image of Vector and Charmy is one of my favorite images in the entire show so seeing it reversed and edited to look like Vector’s hand was on Charmy’s head here set me off in a way that can only really be imagined.

Then the Chaotix huddle to try and work out how Sonic can better make his date a success.

Ugf1MkzRwEzFkM1zEonoIVewa22OIeoHUHG-jnUJQd4vFk1MUZRKUnXlhRgNY8Fvqz4nOt9HIYgXY_zDvntgVNXRma1nhv0-5ldpnMUkiYFZ0zG3GJ-6rXbYARsVo2zi3vufLzzc

HLbtThFpn7scNqtMoBxJb9Puc3h5COZx75aCh1yyzNoRc_9LU3YHzC-TX8YuZL3NnvisSzezLu5P4vHHGgfTqXyuJGboAbvMfQb7Sn65-pG6QMLQLHKzoWWrOaiBwkAKG6JeQEId

This image is a very weird one to copy. In the show, Vector was slamming his hands on the desk in anger at Charmy’s inability to ascertain their whereabouts. As such, this still image was taken in mid-movement. It’s a very weird choice to go, “Hey, this is just a pose Vector would naturally take when shouting at them to huddle.”

QpSTz8A4UlStwkqFACQHHPpHIEyk9wzloFbRKR5YGFj0u6C_Mi7vNTGBRLNfjY4-sz4jH1qAkshem_el4Zolvi05mLT67YkSBTOC7mDjttr2sXbWlVifPHP-lacajFY6SC00dJLO

The Espio pic, meanwhile, is taken from a screenshot that 4kids removed for having blood in it, which is why, in the English version, Vector has two snapshots of him posing while Espio weirdly only has one. Charmy has none but the joke was that he gets interrupted when it’s time for him to introduce himself so it's fine.

huKbulRqQOwmv9DRKftsKRt99HpQspMqOGNEDtCSQU1Pck0dauY-bwQIpwBlz-F8HMRuiIzVJPZ46j86E3JoTkd0CPNaF6O_DTcFU9C75Lc8zA9gUu_cthFXPDP4fqnVDASyEAN-

V9eFw_ZVhqEeH_8dm1QfmkxsOzV5deXoeSczWGTSrygUC5-_Xw-27VeLq34mNxjP8evfRxZlNU7th4MUaDB3PmrVLQZqSb-jArec0iinNrC4JdlnIE6k2UFu3ca0f6ZN-wz9oIuT8BN_vLJZZL6WOy8OdcV42cTGNFMxThK2TsBY82JwLQ4FbbN4hCNN5EHIe6-f2VGkyOcVOnZPQI3Qv-NV8sVfyvvGQI-NU2YS8NZIXlrv-ujU4hpLw_LJXurI9WbUAZXk3thsFLjl

This episode was definitely a Chaotix goldmine. Because they’re such eccentric characters, they naturally have a ton of dynamic poses and faces to crib from. It’s almost too easy to find.

u7jwkUIj7SCELO8aZsaqmhtxK4x6sPoBNW-GcEArTluCXPq0XcgTcCC33kbticmF1LgBHtQ8-60Z-rxf94PfjQRcQAnPgLJk1s_IpUYSxc7jkSFnX5jyecuaMRs9rPGYvUTNn3Vy

1-ezbm9gJgWq0t32G3GYdPaB22ABwUs_4GJcQxXdRcORn_LLgn-43BEG5M6Px7TcUrr-QVoAvuWALeNrlrkLDOvoEQ3yRKQgsLlEbfr7XYn1thYvbkIQVsF8A7BV3L1qblzsu8Jg75ffE0t9GOWL6n8gzzNNKSJTsVR5IPkID7FF1Vh_JRO--e6nOjil6WiqiUmWMMy7-uFBIuT-4MiOwzg1k27VHAaLnCA4tMYt7AXeozYEsRDMChP7jSabg0gqHsWi-2Ejn-7ill9k

That said, it still didn’t keep him from reusing a screenshot he literally already used before within the same issue. Meanwhile, that face Vector is making is from when he’s dressed up as Kogoro Mouri from Detective Conan.

He also cosplays as Conan himself when he puts on his trademark glasses, has his eyes, and has that little snippet of hair coming from his head.

vbYIelim51c0gyquyxq-YWbo2YT_ibjXbzDhqkJdDohRWa8MxLU6dCkxuc0pz0_MSZ1MmdJJYjb0RAuZH5QKW9jt99yX-XVV-9Jf4CKP6iCHuUJ8VSt7uSbSzpbnIlJDncj5Vtx_NGiXW2xXY1ZcQOHuE5KnDlqUHTVNhTVBNRWN0MEft6gMay9nuP2p7AEPN0kngk0ELxtykxrJZHbRycatVkBsBIcVP_IteZDCax1QKzgcjIWFC4rbB_GTMcPqRHEM5kVBekzhHc98

It’s an anime reference and a very easy one to miss which explains why 4kids didn’t remove it from their airing of the show. No one over there has ever heard of Detective Conan/Case Closed so of course it got by. What a weird situation to be in where you’re an anime dubbing company that hates anime and doesn’t want kids to know about things from Japan.

“There’s no such thing as a Japan.”
“Really?”
“Yes! Now eat your jelly donuts and shut up!”

lIS6tEP8A5qCcHkyAfFQy6L9tHcfy1LxD9ioC_PiC1bkl6N1g1K-l7eM0tBpDa0qt4OQdJcqsxU_EFgo6VH0LLjsKIu2epbj9KLKfLrDZBDCqnR4Qwh8u17D0z7HBVKpUWAdm6N3

Setting aside that Amy would totally love to go to Twinkle Park, this image of Charmy is haunting. The image was copied verbatim except, FOR SOME FUCKING REASON, his arms. 

Instead, the side of his body slumps off into an armless mass.

prAvsWM60AsHxFFrZRGM-c_FYo71vDInOnvNC2dnJ2gOzHcThC2lQJHSMwHv1fEk6ogd3jBl8GlcLX3LoBMBW2d9z60MvT_LtuHRTHa9Gzv3j8V0m4JkjWNi7n1MgGAW3YK-3fjG

In the original image here, Charmy was waving his arms about because he was excited to go fight. If anything, removing his arms was the worst thing you could do to this image. 

… That’s why this looks like a creepy, shitty bootleg comic! 

RE4ZC-ZyxKl02cv56a9MeVaumLWKAIcsSyeXRtLynrh9L-0SGd-JRoWiePtCg2GfYfZtqmK7-6UWZZdL2C-OWuQUIt-PI4kJ2u_cPR-YTHK2kL0i_NnnyilWdvCdwf7CsBS0ZoaN_LBGxY8ZT7NWmPjWFyTyDEdC7n1gqGucs5xmPzqlAOgPxki_lda3wtm3ZK2gG2zoLD0g1Ie87JdgD6Plb5nLhRwA_wP8t4qDpQSa0fdYqsfN7hARiSf84b5-eNV-Bw7ElXvfxzE2

This image of Charmy, with a bored expression on his face, getting held down in a fight cloud by Vector is actually an image of Vector holding down Tails inside a fight cloud instead. 

YoqTekA_xMkj92AzKbQ2EhZDEWhv1B1i6dZDHeHWVb_4sheWbGjJ2zofHKHD8ekrDdHztNyflunty9MmEhtc-it3gEDCAdsKcrV7-FOnNCwRUgPWrmr9tNf5cE8gzqMODR8x4t4nCdWZA5Ol7Mch4S6Qi4IoXMCyEXEdZ20_c2qrZ7657D-ws0Oz8LOhZOo_SqPzBIP-MTQdqeHSUOIJzrJrqRwgXXTj-xHYbvoVo5SxgCQYNUmWFUyEOMpUUjYaW72lP8dQLpCTp7lS

It’s amazing how obvious it is that these images just DO NOT go together. My word. The scaling is just all over the goddamn place.

Anyway, Bokkun was just outside their office (for some reason) and overhears what they’re talking about so he flies off to tell Eggman that Sonic took a list that the Chaotix made for him to go on a date with Amy. Eggman is delighted to hear they got together…

gDuhkxK9s0o572bRMCS_oHaQGfT1UdfOVCVU5r6R6COe1np-zlaxWNljwPWo49fPurM5z5EuxLOAQz8lJ9H9JWyV75Ap7XUv3289CcTwSgdMzOIct1uFX9VYo_qukRTRv1dkHPZ0Tim47HIEDTc2hEYxAP3prwxzqaHYqTgiz1hhf2VJKaUoOEetSwUcv8UP5wSJD_T12NNr1TYABi64rdcRZy2YEtf9Z2xhH00HyWBiksXxPJlpCySW8voeCkajSpk3BC9qJpipcsJs

If only the doctor had a life. Oh well.

He also reuses an image he stole from the LAST issue after this one above. It’s the scene where Eggman threatens the Teacher robot, Intelligente with remodeling if he doesn’t take the children at Chris’ school hostage. I posted that one last time so I didn’t feel the need to search for the original one yet again. It’s already out there.

What happens next is a comedy of errors where Eggman sets out to make their date a disaster but because of incompetence they make it way better on accident. Sonic recalls Vector’s advice of sweeping Amy off her feet so he does literally that and takes her to the roof where a bunch of explosives have gone off because Eggman and Bokkun don’t wanna share in their desire to blow shit up.

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Of course, it’s all mostly copied art too.

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That image from the third episode was instantly recognizable if only because it’s got one of the coolest Knuckles moments in existence where he lets go of the ladder and flies off because he doesn’t want to be a part of the main group living at the mansion. “That’s Knuckles, he does things HIS way!” Sonic says as he drifts off. It’s so badass and so not like the Knuckles of today.

Next is Bocoe and Decoe, who’s plan for when Sonic and Amy get to the Hibachi restaurant, as requested by Espio, is to flash fry them in oil. It doesn’t go so well during the practice run when they spill it on the grill.

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After the restaurant business ends, Amy still isn’t satisfied and wants to be dazzled. Sonic takes Charmy’s advice here and suggests Twinkle Park. Since Ian is writing this, he no doubt took the opportunity to throw in the line from Sonic Adventure here too.

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“Amy! W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-W-WAIT!”

This next page is admittedly, very adorable and very sweet.

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It certainly helps that only one or two of these images I can identify from the episodes proper. The rest of them look like they could have been drawn naturally. They probably weren’t but I’ll take what I can get.

Sonic and Amy go into a haunted house and Eggman and the others try to scare them but Amy thwacks them and sets off an explosion in Bokkun’s bag which causes them to go boom. When she leaves, she thinks they were Eggman holograms which is hilarious to think of Twinkle Park installing that for their haunted house.

The last bit is of them on the roller coaster where Eggman and his goons sneak on. Eggman gets stuck because he’s so friggin fat and Bokkun loads the back of it with a ton of explosives. However, the ride comes to a stop and Sonic and Amy get off before the bombs go off. Meanwhile, Eggman is stuck on the coaster because of his fat rolls and ends up getting blown sky high.

Their date finishes with Sonic admitting he had fun. Amy asks, “Enough for a second date?” and Sonic replies with, “Maybe.”

Hey, it isn’t a ‘No’ so that’s an improvement.

We end on Mr. Tanaka arriving to pick them up. Sonic says to keep the engine running because he has one quick thing to do before leaving in the limo.

He rushes off to where Eggman crashed and thanks him for being around to make the date more interesting.

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What a delightful ending. What a heartwarming story. It’s just a shame about the art that had to surround it.

 

I think by the second half of the book, the copied and traced art either slows to a crawl or stops almost entirely. Todd most likely started to do the thing he should actually do and use the images he had as a reference to draw up his own images properly (or found a different source to steal from) but by then it was too little, too late. 

This guy was not put on any more issues of Sonic X after it was discovered what he had done for the last two issues and thank God because it’s quite the insulting thing having to witness other people’s art just being shoveled lazily into an officially licensed book like this. The really cute story of Sonic and Amy going on a date was ruined by such a huge, insidious distraction. How shameful. 

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@Dr. Detective Mike - to answer your question - no - Sally isn't supposed to be portrayed that way. She wasn't like that in SatAM. Before Ian came on board, writers infamously constantly misused her. Gallagher used her as a constant nag and damsel for Sonic to save, Penders up to Issue 50 made her a bland, emotionless piece of nothing that he intended to kill come Issue 50, because in his words - "She cramped Sonic's style".

In SatAM, Sally was a strong leader with a sharp wit, and sometimes playful personality that could keep up with Sonic's speed, attitude, and personality, which made the two work so well together there, and no writer up until Flynn ever got this right about Sally.

Following Issue 50, and SEGA mandating her survival, she became even more worthless, essentially, due to both Penders, and the editor at the time. As you've probably seen at this point, Penders has a habit of taking awful fathers, and trying to justify their terrible decisions. It happened with Knuckles and Locke, and you can bet it happened with Sally and King Acorn.

Under Penders' pen, Sally became the moody nagging teenager that existed to be nothing but a over emotional girl, even though every time this scenario happened, she was 100% right. The point it reaches it's absolute fucking worst is when King Acorn decides that he wants to commit literal genocide on the Robians, and Sally protests it (as she rightfully should).

In the Knuckles issues directly following it, Penders decided to add the caveat that Sally was just being an over-emotional asshat who wanted to get back at her daddy, so he decided to have her comment on the journey to Knuckles' army that literal genocide on innocents was a "pragmatic solution to a rising problem". Which yes, did happen:

tumblr_pr5yf6bufe1u4is2oo1_1280.png

And here's a link to Thanks Ken Penders calling it out - https://thankskenpenders.tumblr.com/post/184744055037/uuuuggggghhhhhhh-no-sally-stop-it-dont

King Acorn is a downright scumbag to Sally. Constantly gaslighting her, constantly undermining her power, constantly making horrifically bad decision after bad decision, and any time Sally would call him out on it, it was shut down as her simply being a moody teenage girl, and father knows best. It was later added by Penders that King Acorn - total psycho and absolute nutjob - was actually 100% in the right because the Source of All was actually letting him see the future. So in short, for both King Acorn and Locke's being shit fathers, and absolutely awful people in general, Penders basically legitimately believed this was enough to vindicate them:

As for Bollers, Bollers essentially had his hands tied with a lot of what was going on with Sally's character. There's a period of time around the issue 70s where she's more or less allowed to be in character, but it soon got removed due to editorial bullshit.

In the time he did have to use her, Bollers did tend to showcase things about Sally that should've been showcased. Not only did King Acorn get portrayed better under his pen, so Sally's call outs actually had effects, but they made an important plot point that heritage should go bite itself, and that Sally is by far more capable of running the Acorn Kingdom than Elias, because she led a fucking rebellion for years as a child, she knows what she's doing.

However, as I mentioned before - editorial essentially forced Bollers to add the beyond contrived love triangle plot to the storyline in order to appeal to female readers, and this had the unfortunate knock-on effect that Sally had to be written like she is for awhile to give the love triangle drama. Stuff like forcing her to be stuck in the castle to get her away from Sonic (and her friends). the bullshit like Sonic and Mina's kiss, and Sally accidentally stumbling on it, all of that - is essentially a direct consequence of the love triangle nonsense that Bollers had hoisted onto him against his wishes.

And in absolute fairness to Bollers, he was attempting to rectify it in later issues. Not only does Sally get some seriously badass moments during the Heart Held Hostage arc (which coincidentally - is the end of the Love Triangle plotline), but even things like the infamous slap was seemingly supposed to be apart of a wider plan where Bollers was going to tackle all of the emotional baggage that Sally had been bottling up for years due to her father undermining her title, and power, the love triangle nonsense, and so on.

Bollers clearly had a plan that was clearly being set up during the Return to Angel Island arc that the Slap was essentially the admittance that Sally had to stop trying to hoist her needs onto romantic relationships, and work through her issues, and because Bollers got ousted following that arc, and Penders was a petty dickhead, Penders essentially undoes Bollers' plans, and goes right back to the garbage love triangle bullshit (See Issues 154 and 155 where Patch and Sally are married, featuring this infamous cover):

DlH0vfW.jpg

Going back to our old pal Penders, the essential bottom line of his garbage writing for Sally can be seen in Mobius 25 Years Later, where much like Julie-Su, both of them undergo total chickification, losing all aspects of fighting, being a tomboy, or anything they once had. In M25YL, they're literally just housewives who lounge around pools, talk about their husbands all day, and cook dinner. That's it. Even when important royal decisions do come up, Sally - the person who is very much the most capable to make these decisions just decides to let Sonic handle them. Both she and Julie-Su become literal non-characters

After Penders came through and essentially bulldozed the plot that Bollers was setting up for Sally following the Slap, it wouldn't be until Ian comes in that we finally get to see her fixed as a character. Ian reintroduces the aspects that made her so beloved in SatAM right from the start of Birthday Bash, not only making Sonic and Sally be on admirable terms again without being at each other's throats, but Sally and Sonic play off each other as well as they did in SatAM, matching wits, making jokes at each other's expense, and offering a battle style that the other can't do alone. 

Issue 175 (Eggman Empire) is the point Ian truly makes it clear that everything is behind her. It's the point she finally says she's done with the emotional baggage, and decides she's doing whatever she wants, no matter who gets in her way. She also gets her long hair cut back to her signature look to signify that she's back to her good old self.

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I really feel like Penders doesn't know how to write female characters outside love interests and emotional baggage, and tried to hide that with superficial 'girl power', leading to cases like Julie Su who had little agency outside being tied to Knuckles, but hey she's a hot head who stands for no nonsense and she beats up chauvinists like Vector, she's a badass modern girl. 😜

The fact Penders wanted to write off Sally and yet brought in what was basically a male version of her with a more dynamic personality leads me to think he just can't relate to a character that is female. Or dads. :P It feels like he struggles and contrives his hardest to get out of giving them an agency or giving their actions consequences (at least ones THEY suffer and acknowledge).

That said, even then I feel like Ian was the lesser of the evils in this regard. I always figured Sally was SUPPOSED to be a bit arrogant and hot headed originally, but less in terms of soap opera crap and largely as a way to contrast Sonic, different ethics, similar attitude. It continuously perks up, as I've said before, intentionally or not, Sally continuously has moments of self righteousness or just being full of bull shit. Not that it was necessarily bad in itself, characters need their flaws and moments of weakness, but I feel like they never gave Sally proper consequences and agency or developed on these foibles as well (even Gallagher who made her more openly curt and naggy, pretty much just made her a 'Huh, women. Can't do anything about them, right?' type gag). Like I said before, Sally never ONCE acknowledged her hypocrisy towards Sonic in her 20 year tenure, something you'd think would be a key characterisation point for her at SOME point. It was a total elephant in the living room, even compared to Locke's baby microwaving, that was at least called out odd times but dispelled with absolutely ridiculous ease.

Like I said even Ian never targeted these uglier qualities of Sally head on like her hypocrisy or occasional temper or bull headedness, things that still lingered on and felt fundamental in how nearly everyone wrote her, and yet tried to insist they didn't and 'No, no, no, Sally is modest and cool headed and never does stuff like that outside the billionth time I wrote it'. Every time that perked up again he whitewashed it like the other writers did, only really targeting Sally as a flawed character under this kinda bland quota of "See? Not a Mary Sue" bad decisions, or when trying to rectify the especially unpopular mistakes other writers made like making her apologise for the slap. If not for having to address fan complaints, I think Ian would have been fine keeping her in the same comfort zone Ben Hurst did and streamlining her into the usual straight man female that won 99.9% of her arguments, but the writers kept making her do things that pissed fans off.

I think this is something that bugs me about Sally, writers keep making her abrasive but they keep going about her like she wasn't really designed to have flaw development or parables herself. She's either a karma houdini or just too blandly perfect. If they just figured her behavioural patterns and made her face actual consequences for them she'd likely come off as way more likeable (Ian's Sally has tons of remorse scenes, but never for the right incidents). I think this was why cases like with Mina and the slap came off so damn awkward, since the writers really didn't want to acknowledge there being this side of Sally, but it was so damn inherent to how they wrote her.

With how often I drone on about Sally, I feel like I've come to REALLY aggressively hate 'progressive' so-called-feminist writing in the recent years, I could make an essay about how many female characters piss me off because they're too glorified, undercooked or get away with murder because the writers just don't get how to write girls indiscriminately as proper characters with agency. Then again, Penders wasn't exactly great with male characters either so maybe it just comes down to not being able to write characters dynamically and designated them into roles....even when they bad plot twists require they end up looking like complete tools.

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2 hours ago, VisionaryofSUPER said:

Been reading Ian's first arc in the comics. It really is like a soft reboot in its own right in just how it throws out so much from the previous arcs and just completely redefines the comics from that point on.

I mean, hey, the contrast in writing from 160 onward is why I always read those whenever I felt like reading my collection over from the beginning, even though I have issues spanning back to 142. This was before I even knew what a Ken Penders was. There was just an obvious point where the book both looked better and read better.

16 hours ago, Ryannumber1gamer said:

 

Under Penders' pen, Sally became the moody nagging teenager that existed to be nothing but a over emotional girl, even though every time this scenario happened, she was 100% right. The point it reaches it's absolute fucking worst is when King Acorn decides that he wants to commit literal genocide on the Robians, and Sally protests it (as she rightfully should).

In the Knuckles issues directly following it, Penders decided to add the caveat that Sally was just being an over-emotional asshat who wanted to get back at her daddy, so he decided to have her comment on the journey to Knuckles' army that literal genocide on innocents was a "pragmatic solution to a rising problem". Which yes, did happen:

tumblr_pr5yf6bufe1u4is2oo1_1280.png

 

Oh yes, I'm aware. I'm way past that issue. I called it out as well when I read it. I remember having a pretty long rant about it. I never stopped talking about the genocide either because its simply amazing seeing a "heroic" Sonic character trying to justify it.

It'd be like if Sonic stopped to give Eggman's idea to make the Lost Hex implode the benefit of the doubt. Then Tails goes "Yeah. Fuck all the living creatures on these hexagons!"

 

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Often it feels like Penders wasn't good at establishing conflicts that lasted for more than one scene, and if a character was still necessitated to play up to move the plot on, the rest of the cast made maybe a brief resistance but were required to become passive to let it through. They have a token moment of acknowledging Max and Locke's appalling ideas and then 'Okay moving on, moving on'. We're not gonna let a silly thing like characters get in the way of the big plot.

Interactions weren't known for being that great in this era. Exposition kept driving things forward to the point that half the comic was often flashbacks.

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24 minutes ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

I mean, hey, the contrast in writing from 160 onward is why I always read those whenever I felt like reading my collection over from the beginning, even though I have issues spanning back to 142. This was before I even knew what a Ken Penders was. There was just an obvious point where the book both looked better and read better.

 

 

I still argue 1-50 has its merits as its own thing and is worth looking through. It was probably the only time before 160 that the comics knew what was. Not perfect, but it can be enjoyed with a bit more consistency.

The art was also better to an extent. Definitely not... the slhock we've been seeing for the last 20 odd issues.

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On 11/20/2020 at 5:57 PM, E-122-Psi said:

Even then though they kept up that hypocritical side to Sally, that she could be reckless and yet still chide Sonic constantly and never once would they say 'Er aren't you doing the exact same thing as him?'. Hypocrites tend to only be sufferable if they get called out on it, and Sally NEVER was.

Even Ian within all his attempts to show Sally could acknowledge making mistakes, kept overlooking this trait of her's.

I think I’ve talked myself out of Sally fandom. I much prefer Bunny Rabbot, Rogue, and perhaps when I learn more aboit her, Blaze. 

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I find myself liking characters with potential a lot more than most people. I mean my second favorite Sonic character is Julie-Su, who barely got to do anything before Ian, and still didn't get much due to where the story tended to focus. So I'm a Sally fan despite all the dumb plots that Penders put her through because I could see where Karl wanted to go with her and that caught my interest. By that time though Ian was already working us towards Genesis, and Mecha Sally, so I was prepared to not see it, which ended up being the case since Karl was let go.

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Spoiler
On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

B9D3J4FvpxEPvgPr5Xq47N8D-axd1ephpx-esjW2Srh6hkgD4flmKb-gXtMRp1ZvFqKXBRuuKch1XC91TEUYdR53dOdnazqCqNTcqpC_RgwBbUU7DD2Wy0J7dzlJOTVrlmipd9Lo

Oh no. Here it is. They’re doing that contrived bullshit where you, for some reason, assume that the person reading the comic book doesn’t know Sonic’s name and have to have him say his full name with a logo.

In a way I kinda get it. The "Benny Lee" stories were trying to harken back to the goofier gag centric comics of Mike Gallagher and so decided to resurrect characters saying Sonic's name as a logo. I'm not defending I'm just saying I get it.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Then when Sally is busy using the sword to unhypnotize Rotor’s family, Rotor uses some device of his to blow up the Oil rig.

RX9B16-PHhwOpVtq49y2JuaXZRHHJYb0Ud2rKBoZ9HgMix9gmrgewQMhRlHd1r-2z_gB9DggOOjVg1hRqHRMwYe0em8ZdEVQHCysB1Q_wGhp6qp1XqeOdrSiMEbRwhMWQsMO-an3

And they lived happily ever...Oh, who am I kidding Eggman regained control of them like 10 seconds after the Freedom Fighters left.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

TQeZEmpHoSykDoYfG8dYMpU6HzYzUgrlkeOvZQr6FER6utA6nAegoUgxw3Py4ssqYQE2y6f5M7jtVBH93orO6tEMQiULwbf96z68VtW7uD33jR5Zms8ds-Q0ibGs4sBD72-qBOV-

I've never done a Family Tree. Are they usually upside down? Because it feels like they shouldn't be upside down.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

zp8aiKbE3MeYXDaQSzEjdqnR3d754PUkmmmm94dhko6oWrJXzKM_qGIfVQHjoSG-eyRIHUBcqthGYYKoiGzaIjfvSWCV7yYrv-IRgPL4zbuUuRmgpj5L87SgxOW_KFlif5Nx9KDB

Sonic The Hedgehog: Rude Boy.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Back in the future, Lara-Su meets up with her mom and is given a proper explanation about what went down in her timeline. Apparently, Lara-Su experienced an alternate timeline, which if true, kind of goes against what I was led to believe was a stepping stone for stories concerning what Penders wanted to be the actual future of the book. But maybe THIS Lara-Su is an alternate timeline one and we focus on a different one in later stories? Ugh. You know, what, fuck it. I don’t even want to think about that.

I have no idea why A.) Penders introduced Lara-Su just to go "This isn't the real Lara-Su she's from a different Zone" and B.) Seems to have forgotten he did that because I'm pretty sure he said this is the same one in M25YL except it really can't be because that one isn't fighting a crazed tyrant version of her dad. An idea he introduced so I don't want to hear him say Ian misread his work or whatever bullshit.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Even more funny is how, if this Knuckles plot line is true for this timeline, it means Locke’s preemptive desire to stop the world from suffering a huge cataclysm failed so hard that it created one instead. Because he microwaved his baby to stop the world from going to shit, he treated his son like shit and then made his body go haywire to the point where the power overtook his brain and he turned evil, thus causing the thing he was trying to prevent because he had a bad dream that one time.

Locke’s the absolute worst and it’s astonishing that Penders loves him so much.

It's always funny to me how Ken just sorta kinda seems to maybe realize how fucked up most of this is but always pulls away because he did this with Knuckles going mad with his power and in M25YL there's a line about him regaining this power and rewriting reality to his specifications but both times it's walked back from. "Knuckles going crazy with power is a different universe main Knuckles won't go that route" "Sonic shouldn't have stepped in. He cost Knuckles an eye." I don't feel bad abiout the spoiler BTW because it means jack all in the long term. It's literally just said in one issue and never brought up again.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

GCkW12taukj5uFzNW0cFQsG_oJWutdUj3_zxnlRD87zuSobVF1mhS2GC6530sIh9QSgNgVfPAbWALfDj3yXv5gi6qL0gcD8YhfK0hmf_5G7whI5V_CcobULrC5BllNnJ6lxrrjB9

Shit as this art is I do actually like the gag of Sonic and Tails barely being awake as they're running. It's pretty cute.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

So yeah, their city’s security system, O.T.I.S (Outer Threat Immobilization System)

I suspect endless fat jokes like him keeping his lunch in the Money In The Bank briefcase. Oh, Yeah! ...Otis is a WWE wrestler.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

dju1voxUR5lGrXNHQL4tUlBePWFbVWEUgN5BF9wNU_E6GE5qbDRMsaIqvcs42ZvBXjbC1T50Dvi_9Ya9SC6brJdvG5aAUnNIii_ijx2nFbe39jIZRP5r0kw1chf4KaTchVZMiLIp

That's right boys. Mondo ouch.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

 

QThuQSEk0nullY1L5AFRhde1F2YMEa1JTe68aZD6cMom3Qg6e9meeGNCBlGp-pChWHWbXT3TpXiDoTnA-AeeZsmURMclBXxf1vVRGPE5shIIR9DPw1UNGFi2FlR0cfXVK1Sxrxdi

God. It’s so jarring how good the Shadow Bots look juxtaposed with how bad Sonic and Tails look. Why is Tails taller than Sonic in that second panel? Come on.

I also want to draw attention to how fucking pointy Eggman's shoulders are! It looks like Ron drew him with SatAM Robotnik's shoulder pads and realized his mistake too late.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Eggman turns the force field on right as the nukes get within the perimeter of it, meaning that the missiles are trapped inside the impenetrable shield along with Robotropolis!

So basically, Sonic and Tails made it so that only Robotropolis suffers the fate of these nukes rather than have it be an equal annihilation. Hmph. Well, I say. How rude.

-Kb73BEleaZ2deGv9s-krvSTiI5WGSIuTRt-Bg5o7urxBfLdyrhm4lqLftqfd5sS5fPr-9SIZfy5TUDjgWaT0UTI8x6XsT3puzGVmrgBAo1W3s7rWYKtD9hn4qtBiNjfrPMIH1wD

So um...That's the destruction of the original home of the Freedom Fighters then. In a single part one-off Bollers wrote in his lighter softer penname. It just feels...IDK a tad bit Anti-Climatic. This should be a major event this was their home they've been fighting to get back and it's just blown up with little to no fanfare.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

The Sword… kind of starts to feel a bit villainous in these continuing pages a bit.

cTdE7Z0WbfxpZ-4OgtMfCrL2Vjqo86ZTla_Iq6gQOQR_f9SatP9-Al1suneltHA4egaxHUaStfkOrIiLYV2VRKvxUViHbcLIl0Txc_Xks4wUV7qQMiLqyqSyh4jnW7QJNXNb9SZk

Then again, it could be Penders from behind the scenes telling Bollers to inject more destiny bullshit into Sally’s future.

Actually kinda no. Sadly it never got realized because of how protective Penders was but Karl Bollers was intending to reveal the Source of all was not this benevolent deity like the Acorns believed but was a malicious entity that had been trying to control the Acorn family for generations. Again Penders wouldn't have it and the story was dropped. Which seems like more power than one contributing writer to an ongoing licensed comic should have but that's what happens when the editor is your friend and lets you do whatever you fucking want.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

What’s truly sad about this is that this is an issue written by our boy Ian Flynn and he actually managed to come up with a very adorable story to go along with it… but the art does everything in its power to ruin it by being a disgusting copy and paste extravaganza.

That's the big problem here. This story is a ton of fun. It's cute it's wacky it's really funny but the art. Ugh. I hope if on the off chance the Sonic X comics ever get reprinted they just commission someone to redraw these 2 instead of using Wanish's original traced garbage.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Aside from having his finger raised, Charmy’s coloring is all wrong here and I’m having trouble fathoming why. His eye lids are flesh colored. His weird shoulder bobbles are orange instead of black. His collar is the same color as his zipper instead of being white. The muffs of his helmet are orange on the sides instead of silver. Everything about this image unsettled me. It truly felt like I was reading some sort of bootleg comic.

That I blame on Josh Ray. He's always fucked up coloring on this comic.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Meanwhile, that face Vector is making is from when he’s dressed up as Kogoro Mouri from Detective Conan.

He also cosplays as Conan himself when he puts on his trademark glasses, has his eyes, and has that little snippet of hair coming from his head.

vbYIelim51c0gyquyxq-YWbo2YT_ibjXbzDhqkJdDohRWa8MxLU6dCkxuc0pz0_MSZ1MmdJJYjb0RAuZH5QKW9jt99yX-XVV-9Jf4CKP6iCHuUJ8VSt7uSbSzpbnIlJDncj5Vtx_NGiXW2xXY1ZcQOHuE5KnDlqUHTVNhTVBNRWN0MEft6gMay9nuP2p7AEPN0kngk0ELxtykxrJZHbRycatVkBsBIcVP_IteZDCax1QKzgcjIWFC4rbB_GTMcPqRHEM5kVBekzhHc98

It’s an anime reference and a very easy one to miss which explains why 4kids didn’t remove it from their airing of the show. No one over there has ever heard of Detective Conan/Case Closed so of course it got by

Plus it helps they changed one of them to a Columbo reference instead.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Sonic recalls Vector’s advice of sweeping Amy off her feet so he does literally that and takes her to the roof

A good reminder of the difference between Archie Sonic and X Sonic in terms of romance. Archie Sonic would probably get the basic gist of how to romance a lady or at least put on charm so it's less obvious he's talking about how cool he is. X Sonic is basically as unaware of what to do as like Goku would be and it's delightful.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Next is Bocoe and Decoe, who’s plan for when Sonic and Amy get to the Hibachi restaurant, as requested by Espio, is to flash fry them in oil. It doesn’t go so well during the practice run when they spill it on the grill.

dQrUbjR3nR7gq9PeeDfOgn_IbzSG4uX8cNNMsFDN9QZfbpt_W090dvh-y07xLQC1C8OL_8ljAFSXtVYWoHDU1iNbdF4AjYuavdLRozaBu0PRw36yo7m_r28dpkdxQ22UxNxMSlz4

This bit always kills me when I reread these comics. I don't care what anyone says Ian has great comedic timing.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

This next page is admittedly, very adorable and very sweet.

1vaD1YbXmi9K2s--V62tiIUcqcih__r34OZsF7ZCtg7BD-LAz2XSYINYOZhWP51dqw0SLozPWB82A-k11XuTG89qQYDEw14aPbhXSEHpHQlcyKzHVOnKEaccEuWkHH0HZ02V1-7D

Ha! She has the end goal from her Adventure stages. That's cute.

 

On ‎11‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 10:48 PM, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Their date finishes with Sonic admitting he had fun. Amy asks, “Enough for a second date?” and Sonic replies with, “Maybe.”

Hey, it isn’t a ‘No’ so that’s an improvement.

Progress. Just hope that next time he doesn't like go off and become King Arthur or something.

 

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3 hours ago, SBR2 said:

Actually kinda no. Sadly it never got realized because of how protective Penders was but Karl Bollers was intending to reveal the Source of all was not this benevolent deity like the Acorns believed but was a malicious entity that had been trying to control the Acorn family for generations. Again Penders wouldn't have it and the story was dropped. Which seems like more power than one contributing writer to an ongoing licensed comic should have but that's what happens when the editor is your friend and lets you do whatever you fucking want.

Oh my God! That's a fantastic idea that would have put a lot of things into perspective and explained so much. 

No wonder Penders didn't want to do it.

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Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #111: Kids of the Spider-Woman

V_0jDy-8JIhSPX0E4CKtuT9VCQiasz7OVWha8W24gDU33fON62EEDSq2lcHOh35moq-UQBbHbi50ihZL-ovJrRKJBk26QLQ0g7RrXBm3tR1MiEXYhIlMRDoWhlEuYHu58UqyZ7NE

Nice cover. It’s always nice to get a cover that looks nice. I like the little plague at the bottom saying “Plus, these characters” to complete the image. Nothing much else to say really.

Spoiler

NLkynGfvq7YBTis7riSZj70HzynRtCo3qjTaBvSg9TXC-SDPV3PCaCaBQYIieE3rKE6hHjp7-Urwlti2fnYJOABeW_5pf532AHjynNENftDAZ0rQGexxCdky_Kho4BkKRYXi6VG6

I’ve been seeing this kind of image too often in these books lately.

Karl Bollers and Ron Lim are on duty for this story yet again. It begins with Amy and Rob going through the forest, on their way towards home, when Amy starts to talk about how staying with Rob improved her acrobat skills right before immediately falling into a spider-web. Rob breaks her out of it and I guess that’s all the introduction we need to the threat of this issue.

We cut to Castle Acorn where Sally is warning her dad that the kingdom is going to be attacked by Arachnis’ spider children for reasons that haven’t been disclosed yet. Sonic figures it can’t be Eggman because he’s toast. So not only was that scuffle last issue supposed to be the end of Robotropolis but Sonic actually thinks he killed Eggman too? Oh geez. That last issue having no fanfare to it whatsoever makes even less sense now.

There’s this weird scene that happens where Sally reiterates that she doesn’t want to smell what the Sword of Acorns is cooking but then the sword says “Pretty please” and then Sally seemingly, instantly changes her mind.

QD46Td-nT38FgEP-29OSwPSN9T-lGoj4m_QtErJCRA-3Hi-Ewx70jymxdFJUtzyrbbmFxYc9vxuF3-dbNm07KNOIBDnYONT180BRMrTsHKX6n3jhrayAOKHxxPO1aqJzsSEKAfjo

Tell Destiny to sit and spin alright?

Because Max is being written by Bollers, he’s getting to act like a father who cares for his daughter’s wishes and asks the guard to remove the sword the instant Sally says she doesn’t want it. That would have been considered blasphemous under Penders’ pen.

Sonic gives Tails the task of rounding up a back-up team, for a reason he doesn’t explain, but Tails doesn’t question it and goes to do the thing Sonic randomly asked him to do. Apparently it’s all up to him.

Then night falls and the first part of the chapter ends with someone in the guard just going “Boy…”

Then the next part of the story begins with the guard finishing his sentence with, “...sure is quiet.” with a bunch of the Spider-kids hanging overhead.

Then the next few pages are just scenes of the spider-kids breaking into Castle Acorn and that immediately ends chapter two. Oh wow. We’re breezing through this rather fast.

The fight begins and Sonic doesn’t help by mentioning their dead mother in a joking sense.

YjYArP7QUgjyyqivufWJm_6-KwEh6T-EEm_CL0f0Pzp2ImvDHQ9jgkK_EYj39zwZgJhaBY9rrwmZnd9fL3fq_cdhyLflkD_-lhmTulkd-MkkuDhoH9na2BJrcexAAYrxGlgiPIA6

What a gross and inappropriate thing to say. I’m willing to bet that’s gonna stop them from attacking you.

Sally’s mom tells her to come with her and her dad but Sally doesn’t want to leave Sonic… but also thinks in her mind that if she stays she’ll be fulfilling the destiny the sword laid out for her so… I guess that’s a dilemma of equal importance to her.

So they all attack Sonic and Sally decides she’s gonna use the sword, saying that she knows what they want all of a sudden. Then Tails runs in with, not a back-up group, but the usual Freedom Fighters plus Amy and Rob, who are just here now.

So, I guess what Sonic meant earlier was just “Hey, go get the Freedom Fighters Tails” and it somehow took him until the dead of night to do that.

Again, I must also stress that Amy and Rob are here now so… you know. That happened.

But none of that actually matters because Sally has figured out that they want the sword like their mother did because of genetic thought or something… so she just gives it to them, making Tails’ mission entirely pointless and Amy and Rob’s appearances here mean literally nothing.

nBRctIzWn7icNZlNCkx0P0fgKdOqeREYnhGd_Dh8aw5-D_zn5AMVze4tBDTsnqogQ6i1PbL48DE3KoUYeSxAlvNMBhyARe2_yiqVtAMjyPh-ej2sjiRu51uQyNGIFGBsT2Ah-fxA

Sally’s just like, fuck this sword, here you random spider ninjas can have it. It’s better this way, I’ve decided. 

The sword says “pretty please” again but then Sally says “No” and then hugs Sonic and then the story just stops. It doesn’t even end. It just stops.

What the hell was that? I honestly don’t know. It kind of feels like someone had a deadline to meet and just superglued a bunch of things and characters together and called it a day. The entire second part of this story was literally just the spider-ninjas breaking into the castle which feels odd to have focused on so much if the resolution was that they were just going to be handed the thing they were after. Why even bother setting up that scene with Tails if his actions weren’t leading to anything?

I don’t know.

The important thing is that Amy and Rob are here.


Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #111: I’ll Shoot the Sheriff!

Oh my God. That’s quite the title. Who cares though? Jeff Axer is here! He’ll make everything better!

This is the actual story where the focus is on Rob, which is the real reason he’s back. I’m sure less time could have been dedicated to that other pointless story so that this one could show him actually showing up to tighten the narrative a bit but whatever. 

Rob has an arrow pointed at Antoine’s Dad because he’s the High Sheriff and he isn’t aware that his memory is back. Antoine and Bunnie have to explain to Rob that he’s got his memory restored and also has no memory of being Rob’s enemy.

I guess Rob just doesn’t believe it though. 

LHeZ1CdlvVbHJkn288cvTq2IEnTWv6a5ZOhGMwL-ct52hekKf6DjooCj2ciCyhvGXkbr7SVUPkF83WTlhis08PM-vtsM2K0I8YspkolKvga98x4NkppMLwy25cV15q-Eulfldt0o

Yeah, I guess it just soars right over his head.

I wonder how much about the Robotization stuff Rob is aware of. If he isn’t aware of it, I wonder why they haven’t explained it to him yet. 

Well, either way, he’s got more tact than Sonic so instead of being a brute he just stalks the guy which is… better. It’s kind of funny how he does it because he keeps appearing out of nowhere with a super serious look on his face. At first he’s merely among the trees, then in the water, but then he appears at the end of a line of soldiers saluting and then outside the window inside what looks like a fake log. 

After General D’Coolette spots him in his mirror he just opens up the window and screams “ENOUGH OF THIS. RATHER THAN SPYING… WHY NOT KEEP ME COMPANY?!”

The literal next shot is them playing card games together and telling campfire stories and doing marksmanship training. It’s just a really, really cute montage.

Ijirem_jj0T1BuICzGNuGqYObB0kQX-DdjkrMYnlpD8pdAC-HGHpN654TMVsY2LcWg-cyxKDF-dq-atqh5GPpDnsyPJYRy274ETnrzMBZYMLagxhPDEJt-NhfVyOsr4c5bjCH3AC

3krUDuFEzSRDIBFhubfFFUofesUzM9gNMbw1N7ZpxrFlyB82M2OPh8cBduO7zkL_4JJC61nYJy71DaSuVLqNvyb-5nyd05UKwzlvLLBeHzx7KOyZUHqmRpbWrzDBLkAF7z5CDNEq

This was adorable. Rob is the best. 

 

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #111: Trouble With Grrrls!

This last story is also a Karl Bollers one. No Ken Penders in any of these stories eh? He’s working with Steven Butler here in this tale about Sonic going on about GIRLS!

Oh nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo~!

Sonic is signing an autograph when all of a sudden a slew of girls just show up and start a mob to chase him down like he’s a rock star or something so he has to run away with Tails.

I66gE-GmXF5hHqASUrLDZ3W15OqdSoEiRIHjzSsPkOgbzGc38tUP3BT5LYnSv84TyQG89e2XBqo52vG1qWyc7F8bp018rp68JN5nLuP6xXNSA2A3ePAFFir0dy8kIj2i9jKwuNIG

It’s very Looney Tunes at the start but eventually, Sonic and Tails reach a lake where they just sit and talk about girls.

Tails asks some very innocent questions about why Sonic would run away from them and if he even likes them. Sonic says he does but he’s got other things to consider and we see reflections of Sally and Mina in the water. 

Tails asks that if he likes a girl then why not just tell them and Sonic, putting on glasses he got from nowhere, asks what would happen to his way past cool image if he did. I dunno. I can’t imagine people would stop swooning over you if you admitted to liking a girl.

When Tails asks Sonic if he wants a girlfriend, Sonic gives very boyish sounding reasons as to why he doesn’t. He says that he wouldn’t be able to run everywhere and instead would always have to hold her hand. Also, they’d have to get first dibs on his chili-dogs.

It ends with Sonic saying that if he had a girlfriend, he wouldn’t be able to hang out with his friends, and gestures to Sally and Mina as they approach. Then the story ends. 

Kind of a weird interlude and a fairly strange note to end on but… alright I guess.

This issue was delightful from the second story onwards. The Rob story was the best drawn and also the cutest thing ever. He’s such a good boy that the naivety of him keeping watch over this guy he was told was now legit is endearing and the fact that all it takes is him being invited to hang out to change his mind is even cuter. The story with Sonic and Tails talking about girls was much less worrisome than I figured it would be, in part, because the final stories are usually reserved for Penders and that wasn’t the case this time. Still, Sonic’s insight into girls and what it means to have a girlfriend is amusing in how underdeveloped his thought process is. 

The first story, however, feels like something that was strung together from fiberglass and duct tape. I have no clue what the point of most of it was except to allegedly try and get rid of the sword in the weirdest and most irresponsible way you could. Like after all the time of trying to recover that thing, it gives Sally powers, and she tosses it to the first collection of people that want it like it's nothing. It’s baffling. I doubt it’s gonna last too.

We’ve hit a point where all the plot lines are just done. The stupid misunderstanding with Sally and Mina is done. The High Sheriff has his memory back. Sally just gave away the plot macguffin bullshit magic sword. Robotropolis has been blown up and apparently, they think Eggman is dead.

What’s gonna happen now aside from all the Knuckles stuff that I don’t care about? I guess I’ll find out.

 

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #112: Mistaken Identity Crisis!

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This is another excellent looking cover. I’ve seen this image of Antoine before so I’m guessing it’s a pretty well liked picture of him. It’s very dynamic. Also, I’m still enjoying the little bobbles at the bottom that say who else is being featured in the book. It’d probably ruin some other covers depending on what their style was but it hasn’t yet.

Spoiler

We begin on the most pathetic death in the world.

A man dying in quick-sand over a stick of fucking Juicy Fruit gum.

S_ExK0QxbFjtMndETJOBRViLTdLYudw0uIBwedxzuQBtiuc74dXl79fPZww1kS2mJJoElBPVn-eQUiiQzbbEFemsD80b-24CEAehwKRndMLkpo761C-PN5zMCZqX_1GXtpQZIeMn

Juicy Fruit. It’s gonna kill ya.

Benny Lee (Karl Bollers pretending to be someone else) is writing and we have the return of Art Mawhinney. Oh, how nice. They’re in charge of both of the stories on this issue so this is going to be an incredibly consistent feeling issue. 

It looks good.

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It’s also a very cute scene of Antoine walking and talking with his Papa about stories of old. It’s just really nice.

However, a sky portal opens up and out falls Zonic the Zone Cop. Sonic just happens to be in the area and spotted the sky opening up so he races over and catches Zonic just as he’s about to fall into the dirt. 

Apparently, someone or something beat the ever loving shit out of him and when Sonic races off, General D’Coolette gives him a compliment that leads to a very unintentionally hilarious Antoine pic.

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Look at that Droopy Dog looking motherfucker. 

Zonic is taken to Dr. Quack and stripped down so that we can see that he looks exactly like Sonic. Sonic explains to the confused doctor that he’s him from a perpendicular zone. He also has one of those gross, cartoonish knots on his head.

iR6Egdxg131TkSR5tINflGgMjte7xuNwLoIJn9l00PXZsReqVV5ZAZn9yld9fkNuA_v_Gqr38JPha3WQEUAUf6L2wsiCcBmkVJUk6ww6wbOd32BZuNSOEnkYHIuWd09wp4NMhdC6

Someone really took a hammer to this guy’s face.

As Sonic leaves the tent to contemplate what could have happened, General D’ Coolette and Antoine show up. The General begins to heap praise onto Sonic and at first Sonic is all about it but then notices how Antoine is being “dissed” so he starts to talk about how much of a hero Antoine is. The two of them go off from the General to have a little talk about a plan to make Antoine’s dad believe he’s a hero because, apparently, the two of them are in agreement that he actually isn’t one which is… debatable.

The two leave with Antoine apparently not knowing what Sonic’s plan is going to be and before anything can happen, Dr. Quack calls Sonic back to the tent to tell him that Zonic is awake. Zonic informs him that one of his worst enemies is loose in this zone. I wasn’t sure who he was talking about but we cut to a scene of Antoine lying to his dad about his exploits when this so-called worst enemy appears and promptly shows us how much of a threat he is by getting a karate chop to the throat by Antoine.

x9XWLJ96Z8GiLhziglZJJdCBHd-k2h6GIaiSfMd63gyQKY0VqyDifc9zKS8s04zSoMpoc9fyI87da_77DDI8W7uvsrxK10qGcomu8b7iety7QrzK5D-U7QVKQwqLrZjvyDyWhDDP

So yeah, Evil Sonic is back. The last we saw of him his group kicked him out for being unmotivated and then he got thrown in jail because he sucked and then fainted when he found out Evil Geoffrey (which is a strangely redundant sounding name) took over his group.

I guess he broke out and is here to get beaten up by Antoine and dragged back to prison after soiling himself or something.

It’s really kind of amazing how much he sucked before he became Scourge.

I didn’t even speak too soon when it came to talking about his defeat here. I just turned the page and yeah, it’s done. One hit from Antoine took him out. 

M61zZPf-PsGlM3RXga3YBNXB1O4c0z5BQkAiHjhOH53FuLXcIOUhZGvcHG30UCDazjyRfQBMRq3q-iWQJl64ppkVNdQLp_g9miPtMcPVkk-RgXx4oCINBhPj8Kn1HJQ6-FQXSvAV

It’s so embarrassing. Jesus.

Zonic shows up and handcuffs him then the real Sonic shakes his hand to congratulate him, which Antoine graciously accepts… until he realizes that he’s the actual Sonic and faints, which ends the story on uproarious laughter.

The next couple of pages are a bunch of character files with some pretty bad character art that was most likely drawn by Penders. Then the next story begins.


Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #112: Forgiven

Uncle Chuck is in his lab when Sonic comes in and asks if he’s going to join Lupe and her family’s going away party. Lupe, whom, the last time we saw her got roboticized in a really dumb way in a very dumb story is now just showing up again without any fanfare. I understand we’re to assume they just got saved with the rest of the Robians but it really speaks to their lack of importance when they weren’t given any kind of focus back then and in the long stretch of time leading up to this moment.

This moment within this story that’s actually about Uncle Chuck and not them.

I’m not complaining all that much of course. I’d rather a story about Uncle Chuck over another pointless Wolf Pack story.

Sonic, realizing that his Uncle is busy, decides to just bring the party to him.

Tmh-kzGSSqLvCm_llEjkDszEdEoZ_JTYyUE5K3_zEnCbjmfrqEnnnRH8etJp4gqDqysJY9noVzwpwZamKknOjMV5aC8RhEKnJhh9zjhSzuhfO0H9XBv247uwhtjNZ4XUuGVdmNmc

It’s a kind gesture but it still kind of defeats the purpose of being busy and needing to focus all the same.

He’s not really all that busy though. It’s obviously just a thing he said so that he can get away from the proceedings. He goes out for some air as soon as the party starts.

Lupe follows after him and points out that he’s been avoiding her and her family the entire time they’ve been there. 

Of course, Uncle Chuck feels like it's his fault they got roboticized, which is understandable despite it not actually being his fault. Being under Robotnik’s control is something he’s not sure will excuse it which is, of course, silly. The party comes outside to make Uncle Chuck feel better and dedicate the party to him in his honor.

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It’s short and sweet.

This was a very short and simple issue. I appreciate it a lot for that. There wasn’t anything super deep about them. These were just cute stories about the days in the lives of these characters with some fun and heartwarming moments. I was right about it feeling consistent thanks to having the same writer and artist throughout all of it. Penders most likely was too focused on the interlude of data files and lore he stapled into the middle of the book but thanks to that the quality of the issue wasn’t dragged down by anything. 

So yes, this was a good one. Stay losing, Evil Sonic. 

 

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #113: From the Freedom Fighter Files: Cry of the Wolf

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Ah hey. I just had to go and open my big mouth about the Wolf Pack eh? If it’s any consolation though, it would seem we’ve only got one consistent story to pay attention to throughout it so this should go by fairly quickly. Can’t say I feel I’ll have too much to say about my feelings regarding the time the Freedom Fighters first met the Wolf Pack. This is a nice enough cover. I really like the sun’s flare in the background. 

Who knows though. Maybe I’ll be taken by surprise by something either shockingly good or something racist again.

Spoiler

What's even weirder about  the fact that this is just one story is also the fact that it’s got a different writer, Jay Oliveras with help from Karl Bollers and Many Hands. I wonder if this’ll succeed at at least making whatever story is told here interesting.

0mq-lfrnAgR31zXWSWUs9s8AhQ3EkkSAhA2L4WrIFl5dRJINGXGV7uPm1dKBEfXjMkkz1ccxiNpsXYx1t_hnkxDrh502fhyKBiKZnaUWYORpnK7Kt_adCF3f5_xUV63GvJWTQXhF

Oh Jesus. Fuck.

Is that some kind of omen?

Well, that certainly surprised me. The rest of that image looks good though. Now it’s time to see what the comic itself will actually look like.

AvQPzHBwgSZ1iGbZbbMyxk_ziRgdvedWJoxhX61WnS4yijysGMH9Jy9uoN9-cLSrJZdHnwBKz1tUGwOtvlMzZJ8SUQWtpB3P_8DGpv6Xks0ybmxvtUZDOOwfb_zeVoxhPU-qqrMA

Oh.

Ohhhhhhh.

Then immediately it all came flooding back to me.

I recognized the name Many Hands but I didn’t recall from when. Now I remember.

That issue. That issue of the Super Specials that I HATE.

Oh so it’s gonna be like that eh? Alright…

Well then, maybe I’ll get by with simply looking at the positives here.

WqCZPOxrZjHa_EjUtc962MDaVBDjkl-Xs8D0hqyzaqnmxatYTQIkqZO3yT2Wo7JVzIYtrrJkOY9HWWgMJs0idIfr3G4QHVuNLO0HNPt4aoOjVIfoXNuRJWLf4-W5KurTky7Iad3A

… Uhm… positives… uh…

… I think this might be our first special guest appearance by Sanic in one of these books. So there’s that.

I know I should probably mention the plot right about now but literally all that’s happened is that Sonic, Sally, and Antoine are in a cave. I’m too busy admiring this preschool crayon drawing shit right now.

mrN1qj2r68SCpi0zC5WKPRz9FK3vMX6n-y9aRh5rI-Mb6zVSyeCDjTmI1-xQeNI9dH40GYbew1FnVf8yYMWwAENErEJ_o4Wv1UbiFswWqSQyUjUK6IGj9CZsSUOT0lBiNMT-Go_2

All those talented artists you see on Twitter and Deviantart can eat their hearts out. This is the professional shit the official Archie comics are looking for.

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Ohhhhhh no. I think my heart exploded.

So anyway, they come across one of the Wolf guys, follow him even though they don’t trust him, and then are led to a place where they see Lupe, presumably getting high off of cannabis or something.

r4jDo3mxILq4xu8ML5zYgQ8wg_K9vXs3LeBYgAAAQTxSgRD3UWDK7JnBIK-HER566Rpw4Ry_MNr95_vButXa17bJhUGrtjD1ahR6IjYmncJk9LRCnEo6IkGndAJw8Yc-EF8L4Ldo

This is some good shit man.

Anyway, they introduce themselves as a group of Freedom Fighters and that surprises the original Freedom Fighters. So they sit down and have a chat and it’s here that we finally learn about the awesome history of the Wolf Pack.

They were a group of wolves that lived together and then their lives got ruined when the Robonik man attacked. 

That’s it.

Oh wow. I’m so glad we know that now.

So how’s the art looking?

rV3y2dUVwqeeCaPDKzAffL5xcxXjp8H2-XrH9-vWHUm1-XzPyjd3fb74Nskn6Hh6T_Eqs2-zIeSEO6Z3n8U-51UDRwK8Dd_5GEAfGbkMauDat9hpi26sOY3iVJFBnUgGbhWRcRrK

Iconic.

That’s how it’s looking.

They figure that there are probably other Freedom Fighter groups out there that aren’t aware of one another, thereby confirming that the existence of a Freedom Fighter network is necessary so they set out to go make one. This also confirms that literally everyone the world over had the same idea to name their group the same thing. What a lucky coincidence that everyone was so starved for ideas that they all came up with the same group name.

Anyway, they hatch a plan to take down a weapon that’s been bothering the Wolf Pack for a while. Turns out it’s just a generic, non-threatening looking alien saucer.

27YhYZ-qTFWcGTdu-wawd3gPZ1QCQpA9FGdtpcOR63VO7iui-njQk7bGBa2AnnNAS7R2tbK3irON_LhoP1Fy832Sku8nJeuqpRTuekJnesRUTV1Pm292PDvdoNH_4Zve1PUDbjml

This is probably really exciting to somebody out there. 

Anyway, a long fight ensues that seemingly ends when Sonic spins into a tornado and lightly taps against it so that it knocks into the ground but then everyone is surprised when it just floats back up. Then Snively spots Sonic and Sally and says they’re under arrest and the next scene is them tied up in Snively’s ship. 

That seemed abrupt and weird but it turns out it didn’t matter because Sonic breaks out immediately and reverses the situation using an unseen method, all while looking like he’s decomposing right before our eyes.

HrB9-LUBkpg_8tjf-QzNG1ILTNhYZN-Q1No7ghNVGusHzgQp5iVCfaTmPjp3K2QbPVWp8tpKZAXEMzxxSVvC2ORfhiu_CPGuXLt8giWDJe6gDPO4asRUWOo3vRCCCH0oVRZqIWp9

After this page we get another page where all of the heroes' problems just immediately solve themselves all at once. It turns out the big weakness of the giant scary ship is that it can’t get hit with electricity. Seems like overcharging any machine with electricity is a weakness most of them would have but alright.

They lead it to a thunderstorm and one bolt strikes it and it blows up and as they’re celebrating they receive word that the other plot point about needing to find more Freedom Fighters has been fixed as well.

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I love how Lupe says this as they’re celebrating that other thing they just did. Everything is just coming up FF today isn’t it?

Then it… ends. Thank God.

So it’s actually kind of a good thing that this issue was as absurdly badly drawn as it was because without it, I feel like this recap would be at best maybe a paragraph or two long. It’s all so incredibly basic and uninteresting. Perhaps this would have worked better as what it was intended to be, a script from the SatAM cartoon show, but it certainly doesn’t work here. Especially when you grab unpaid interns out of the broom closet, hand them some crayons, and say “Hey, you do this now. You’re Many Hands. Get it? Cause you’re more than one person.”

I’m not entirely sure why a filler issue was needed. Perhaps there were a ton of arguments happening at this point about the direction to take the comic now that Robotnik was dead again, Robotropolis was destroyed, The Sword of Acorns was sold on eBay, and the love triangle nonsense has ended.

Oh, I know. We can make them all go to school.

Oh wait a minute, we did that? Well what happened to that plot line? Oh, it just sort of… stopped and didn’t get brought up ever again? Huh. That’s weird. 

I have no clue where the comic is going from this point on and I don’t think the comic does either. 

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Spoiler
13 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

I like the little plague at the bottom saying “Plus, these characters” to complete the image.

IIRC that's going be a thing until like #125. I like it too it's nice to see the backup stories get some love.

 

13 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

NLkynGfvq7YBTis7riSZj70HzynRtCo3qjTaBvSg9TXC-SDPV3PCaCaBQYIieE3rKE6hHjp7-Urwlti2fnYJOABeW_5pf532AHjynNENftDAZ0rQGexxCdky_Kho4BkKRYXi6VG6

Ok who's the joker who put some FurAffinity art in an official comic?

 

13 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

There’s this weird scene that happens where Sally reiterates that she doesn’t want to smell what the Sword of Acorns is cooking but then the sword says “Pretty please” and then Sally seemingly, instantly changes her mind.

QD46Td-nT38FgEP-29OSwPSN9T-lGoj4m_QtErJCRA-3Hi-Ewx70jymxdFJUtzyrbbmFxYc9vxuF3-dbNm07KNOIBDnYONT180BRMrTsHKX6n3jhrayAOKHxxPO1aqJzsSEKAfjo

Tell Destiny to sit and spin alright?

I think the idea is supposed to be that the Sword is literally controlling Sally. She seriously wants nothing to do with this bullshit but the sword is making her.

 

13 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

The fight begins and Sonic doesn’t help by mentioning their dead mother in a joking sense.

YjYArP7QUgjyyqivufWJm_6-KwEh6T-EEm_CL0f0Pzp2ImvDHQ9jgkK_EYj39zwZgJhaBY9rrwmZnd9fL3fq_cdhyLflkD_-lhmTulkd-MkkuDhoH9na2BJrcexAAYrxGlgiPIA6

What a gross and inappropriate thing to say. I’m willing to bet that’s gonna stop them from attacking you.

Ugh. Seriously sometimes Bollers gets the whole "Jerk with a heart of gold" thing but other times he slips completely into Dumbass jerkwad SatAM Sonic.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

The sword says “pretty please” again but then Sally says “No” and then hugs Sonic and then the story just stops. It doesn’t even end. It just stops.

This could have been a stronger ending if it was more clear that Sally was breaking free from the swords control. Anyway this plotline with Arachnis's kids and the Sword of Acorn will go unresolved until #162.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Sonic is signing an autograph when all of a sudden a slew of girls just show up and start a mob to chase him down like he’s a rock star or something so he has to run away with Tails.

I66gE-GmXF5hHqASUrLDZ3W15OqdSoEiRIHjzSsPkOgbzGc38tUP3BT5LYnSv84TyQG89e2XBqo52vG1qWyc7F8bp018rp68JN5nLuP6xXNSA2A3ePAFFir0dy8kIj2i9jKwuNIG

This kinda reminds me of something from one of the Early Sonic bibles that said Sonic considers himself a ladies man but doesn't like to be chased by girls. While the first part is debatable the second half is very obviously true. Right, Amy?

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Tails asks some very innocent questions about why Sonic would run away from them and if he even likes them. Sonic says he does but he’s got other things to consider and we see reflections of Sally and Mina in the water. 

He also sees and image of Elias which is strange and confusing to him. (Note that's a joke but I do headcanon Sonic pansexual and honestly Archie Sonic would be one to think too hard about also liking dudes)

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

It ends with Sonic saying that if he had a girlfriend, he wouldn’t be able to hang out with his friends, and gestures to Sally and Mina as they approach. Then the story ends. 

Sonic just friendzoned his 2 potential love interests. Amazing.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

We’ve hit a point where all the plot lines are just done.

Oh, you don't know  how right you are. From this point on the Sonic stories in this book are all basically one offs with occasional plot progression until about 122.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

We begin on the most pathetic death in the world.

A man dying in quick-sand over a stick of fucking Juicy Fruit gum.

S_ExK0QxbFjtMndETJOBRViLTdLYudw0uIBwedxzuQBtiuc74dXl79fPZww1kS2mJJoElBPVn-eQUiiQzbbEFemsD80b-24CEAehwKRndMLkpo761C-PN5zMCZqX_1GXtpQZIeMn

God bless these dumbass early 2000's ads. You don't get these kind of ads anymore.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

The two leave with Antoine apparently not knowing what Sonic’s plan is going to be and before anything can happen, Dr. Quack calls Sonic back to the tent to tell him that Zonic is awake. Zonic informs him that one of his worst enemies is loose in this zone. I wasn’t sure who he was talking about but we cut to a scene of Antoine lying to his dad about his exploits when this so-called worst enemy appears and promptly shows us how much of a threat he is by getting a karate chop to the throat by Antoine.

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I don't know who this scene reflects poorer on Evil Sonic or Zonic. Antoine thinks this is Sonic in disguise and knocks him the fuck out but Evil Sonic beat Zonic to a pulp. This kinda unintentionally makes them both look like weenies.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Uncle Chuck is in his lab when Sonic comes in and asks if he’s going to join Lupe and her family’s going away party. Lupe, whom, the last time we saw her got roboticized in a really dumb way in a very dumb story is now just showing up again without any fanfare. I understand we’re to assume they just got saved with the rest of the Robians but it really speaks to their lack of importance when they weren’t given any kind of focus back then and in the long stretch of time leading up to this moment.

It kinda bums me out because I really want to like the Wolf Pack but they don't really get to do anything.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog - Issue #113: From the Freedom Fighter Files: Cry of the Wolf

fc9-RGA043VgQ_a6wVyjS0nSAvsOBfE-x4bS0SNDhaslLChWh1lu3kRZoMQZcezA7tO_ideC6eAHSqsuC7q_ESK0QEJWeJgg2kl-qZKdJgdGIbgiJSYyYSILuiO-6xrsLV-WXenZ

Dom Nobel voice: Hello Beautiful Watchers and welcome to Lost in Adaptation the show about comparing films and TV to the works they're based on...or Vice Versa here.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

know I should probably mention the plot right about now but literally all that’s happened is that Sonic, Sally, and Antoine are in a cave. I’m too busy admiring this preschool crayon drawing shit right now.

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In the original episode they were here following King Acorns list of Freedom Fighters (That he...somehow had?)  They were sitting around the campsite and went looking fort the Wolfpack. They found a cave and realized it was the path to them. Dulcy who was with them fucked off because she's claustrophobic.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

So anyway, they come across one of the Wolf guys, follow him even though they don’t trust him, and then are led to a place where they see Lupe, presumably getting high off of cannabis or something.

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This is some good shit man.

I think now is a good time to point out that the Wolf Pack are based on Native Americans. It never really comes up in the comics but they're design aesthetics are taken directly from Native culture. I don't really know what the deal with this pit is.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Anyway, they introduce themselves as a group of Freedom Fighters and that surprises the original Freedom Fighters.

Weirdly it does in the episode too. Even though finding Freedom Fighters is entirely the reason they're here.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

So they sit down and have a chat and it’s here that we finally learn about the awesome history of the Wolf Pack.

They were a group of wolves that lived together and then their lives got ruined when the Robonik man attacked. 

That’s it.

Oh wow. I’m so glad we know that now.

Yeah that's basically it in SatAM too. Though they did change it from Lupe's father getting captured like in the cartoon to her Husband. Probably because there's no way Lupe is a teenager.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

Anyway, they hatch a plan to take down a weapon that’s been bothering the Wolf Pack for a while. Turns out it’s just a generic, non-threatening looking alien saucer.

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This is probably really exciting to somebody out there. 

It looks exactly the same in the cartoon. The difference is there it was connected to Robotnik's final Doomsday project codenamed...The Doomsday Project. You suck SatAM Robotnik.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

That seemed abrupt and weird but it turns out it didn’t matter because Sonic breaks out immediately and reverses the situation using an unseen method, all while looking like he’s decomposing right before our eyes.

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It takes about that same amount of time between capture and escape. Also Sonic's lines about it not being over until the Hedgehog sings and feeling a song coming on are directly form the original episode.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

After this page we get another page where all of the heroes' problems just immediately solve themselves all at once. It turns out the big weakness of the giant scary ship is that it can’t get hit with electricity. Seems like overcharging any machine with electricity is a weakness most of them would have but alright.

I can't stress enough this is also what happens in the episode. So shit art aside it's honestly a pretty accurate Adaptation.

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

They lead it to a thunderstorm and one bolt strikes it and it blows up and as they’re celebrating they receive word that the other plot point about needing to find more Freedom Fighters has been fixed as well.

 

That is also directly from the episode and it's something that really annoyed me. I know they only had 13 episodes but they set up this idea that they're going to visit all five groups and set up a network and Lupe just...sends out a message to inform them all of the plan. It sucks we could have seen how other groups operate but nope.  

 

14 hours ago, Dr. Detective Mike said:

It’s all so incredibly basic and uninteresting.

Yup. That's SatAM. I was trying to not harp on it too much but seriously it's a very standard 90's action cartoon with a licensed character pasted on that everyone declared as dark and edgy because that's how they remember it as children. I saw it first when I was 16 or 17 (around when Shout! Factory released the complete series) and at first I bought the hype. I thought it was amazing but as I watched it more the cracks started to show and I really started to realize you could completely remove all the miniscule Sonic references and nothing would change. I do not like SatAM and it's ironic since I do enjoy the comics and the Freedom Fighters as characters. Weirdly it's the same thing with SA2. It was the game that got me into Sonic and has my favorite character Rouge but I think it's aged pretty poorly and I'm not overly fond of it's tone. Maybe I'm just a Sonic Hipster I don't know.

 

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There is more context to how Sonic and Sally escape in the animated version. Sonic bashes all the SwatBOTS (since cuffing him doesn't really hinder his ability to spin, silly Snively :P) while Sally uses NICOLE's laser function (which I think is only used here) to break both their cuffs) and then she's the one who easily beats and ties up Snively. Not much but this was probably the nearest to Sally having physical involvement in a mission in a show.

I feel like the gilligan cut in the comic version was kind of like skipping the formalities. This is SNIVELY we're talking about.

But yeah aside from a few minor changes (mostly downplaying the comedy moments like with Antoine), this is pretty much the episode adapted. The episode itself wasn't exactly phenomenal, just the better art and actual voice acting made it better than this eye sore. The big reason it stood out in the show was because it was build up to The Doomsday Project and the other Freedom Fighter groups banding together, though even that was kinda undermined since Lupe and all the other Freedom Fighters got jobbed and captured in like ten seconds in, with Sonic and Sally once again doing everything single handed.

Lupe and the Wolf Pack weren't exactly memorable in the show, they had two appearances and very little personality and agency in either. The comics I thought were only relatively better really, they felt like one of the blander Freedom Fighter divisions.

 

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