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- Is he really nothing more than just a cold hearted killing machine incapable of feeling emotions or is he just the sad result of being created by Eggman and programed for an evil purpose who is just doing what he was programed to do and doesn't know the difference between right and wrong? Sonic Heroes might have just been Metal finally realising he was just a tool to Eggman and finally breaking free, but due to his 'Kill Sonic' programming still being present in him and possibly because Metal has been around Eggman his whole existence, all Metal knows about is conquering, destroying, and killing Sonic, so he probably didn't know what else to do now that Eggman wasn't pulling the strings. Not to mention Metal was possibly having an identity crisis in Heroes. Shadow, who was created by Eggman's's grandfather Gerald, is a good point of comparison. Shadow was partly created for a good reason (mainly in finding a cure for Maria's illness), and Maria was also a large impact in Shadow's life, as she was there and able to teach him about some parts of what's right and wrong. Metal Sonic, on the other hand, was solely created for an evil reason and has had no positive role model.
- Sega's own employees are not exempt from this, some say that Sonic's a nature-loving hero with great appreciation for beauty and relaxation, and some say that he's so hyperactive he can never sit still, let alone sit and look at the scenery, some also say he's a loner and likes his peace, while others say he's gregarious and likes a lively atmosphere.
- In Sonic Adventure, pay attention to Sonic's theme, particularly the line, "It doesn't matter who is wrong or who is right." Another one: selfless hero courageously risking his life to protect people, or thrill-seeking action junkie who gets involved with the events of a given story simply because he enjoys the chase?
- Sonic's apparent complete indifference to girls despite being 15 years old has sparked many speculations among people:
- Maybe he's gay, maybe he's unwilling to utilize his Popularity Power to get into bed with someone because he sees it as shallow, or maybe he's asexual. Love seems to confuse him. Maybe it's because of how young everyone is, or perhaps he really does love Amy, but isn't ready to settle down yet and/or doesn't want Robotnik to pick up on said affections and kidnap (and possibly hurt, or even kill) Amy just to get to him. + , Sonic, however, has already shown some signs of interest in some female characters, examples would include some heavy subtext with Blaze the Cat and some playful flirting with Rouge the Bat. Sonic does flirt with Rouge in Sonic Battle for the GBA, and then you could say Rouge flirts with everyone and means nothing by it, he was just giving her a taste of her own medicine.
- Sonic's relationship with Amy could also be considered abusive, with him brushing her off at every turn and not even making the effort to reciprocate. If he's largely established as not being interested, why should he reciprocate in the least?
- In the Sonic X continuity, however, Sonic/Amy seem to be heavily implied in some scenes, especially in the ending of Ep. 42, in contrast to his game interpretation, some like to use that interpretation of the character for their portrait of Sonic's relationship with Amy in the game continuity.
- Some non-canon supplementary written material gives their own interpretation on Sonic's relationship with Amy. He does like her back, but is too shy to be open about it.
- Sonic frequently brushes Amy off and actively runs away from her. To some fans, this shows that he's afraid of her or that she annoys him. Others have pointed out that, according to the Sonic the Hedgehog 2 manual, Sonic used to brush off Tails as an annoyance until he eventually gained respect for Tails. As a result, there's an interpretation that Sonic doesn't dislike Amy he just reacts dismissively to everyone by default and it takes persistence to get on his good side (with some fans even claiming it's a species trait of hedgehogs, as real hedgehogs are not the most social and affectionate animals).
- When teaching Shadow how to use weapons in Shadow the Hedgehog, he notes that he wouldn't be caught dead using them, yet he picks up a sword in Sonic and the Black Knight without a word of complaint. Is his aversion to guns specifically, or is he swallowing his personal distaste to do as the Romans do?
- Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik invokes a lot of this. One interpretation, though, is that the character isn't even a villain. He wants to make the world a better place, and has the intelligence to create the inventions that can help the world, and make it a truly utopian society. It's just that before he can get his plans into action, Sonic always interferes. Since Sonic's too impatient to let Robotnik explain, Sonic always assumes Robotnik's short-term villainy is the main goal, and stops Robotnik before the good in his plans can be completed. Sure, Robotnik's attempts to take control of the world aren't exactly the normal way to bring about positive changes, but he understands PR, and that his continual early defeats against Sonic means that if he wants to better the world, then he has to do it by force, and that includes techniques such as holding it hostage. Robotnik might then be a villain for how he will take over the world, but once he gets in power, he's got his master plan to sort everything out. He's just too much of an egotist to merely explain his proposals to current world leaders, and wants all the glory for himself.
- Or maybe he fears that they would disregard his ideas, and thinks he has to force his ideas upon the world in order to get people to accept them.
- It seems that Eggman's main goal is to create his "Eggman Land," an over-the-top Egopolis amusement park that he has actually succeeded in building in a few games. This suggests that all he really wants is a land of his own to command; it doesn't have to be the whole world. Even though all he's commanding is a legion of obedient robots. However, he knows that to successfully pull this off, he needs the Chaos Emeralds, which he can only get by force.
- Consider Eggman's many mechas. They're bright and carnival-based. Eggman may, deep down, be a little child. Taking over the world is like playing with his toys. And Sonic? He may be the closest thing Eggman has to a genuine friend.
- The epilogue of Sonic Adventure 2, wherein Eggman expresses his admiration for Gerald Robotnik and states he wanted to become a great scientist because of what his grandfather accomplished, further implies that he turned to villainy at least partially out of a desire to right the injustices that led to Gerald's wrongful death at the hands of the world government, with Motive Decay possibly seeping in over time.
- One Youtuber created an analysis of Tails' character in Sonic Forces and came to the conclusion that he's not suffering from simply bad writing. His odd behavior is mainly due to depression brought on by trauma from the war.
- Some people have suggested that Tails is in love with Sonic, which could explain why he rejects Amy. Perhaps he's just not into girls in general. Though, being a kid's game, they obviously can't say this outright.
- A meta-example could be that Amy could be defined as the "Anti-Peach" like Sonic was the "Anti-Mario."
- Is Amy really in love with Sonic, or is she trying to hook up with him just so she can be famous too? She always acts like an obsessive fangirl when she's around him, and even he finds it annoying. Plus, Sonic being a hero means he's famous or will be famous someday, and maybe Amy wants to be with him just because then she can claim to be "the legendary Sonic the Hedgehog's girlfriend!" Or is it just Hero Worship because he rescued her in Sonic the Hedgehog CD?
- Knuckles is the biggest case of Depending on the Writer in the whole franchise, from The Trickster in his debut to The Stoic during the Adventure era to laid-back strongman for Heroes to Hot-Blooded competitor in spin-off titles. And then there's the matter of his level songs from Adventure 2, which are positively rife with Intercourse with You.
- Shadow the Hedgehog has as many interpretations as he does songs, including not only the various Shadow the Hedgehog theme songs (I Am specifically questions his moral alignment outright), but the various songs from Sonic Adventure 2 (such as the White Jungle theme, Rhythm and Balance). The franchise has long settled on the heroic All Hail Shadow as his anthem, which still shrouds him in ambiguity. Violent ambiguity.
- In Shadow the Hedgehog, Shadow has the line "This is like taking candy from a baby, which is fine by me". Is he fine with how easy the mission is or is he fine with taking candy from babies?
- Metal Sonic didn't defy Eggman in Sonic Heroes, the entire thing was Eggman's plan to allow Metal Sonic to get more data to copy, specifically that of Perfect Chaos, and Shadow, in order to enhance his abilities further. Or Metal Sonic could have concluded that Eggman was too incompetent to get rid of Sonic and friends, and that the best way for him (Metal Sonic) to fulfill Eggman's goals was to do the whole thing himself, getting Eggman safely out of the way by locking him up aboard his flagship.
- Some fan theories state that The Duke of Soleanna is actually evil.
- There are some fan-theories that Maria's martyr sacrifice was closer to Suicide by Cop. Realizing she wouldn't live long even if she was captured or ran away, and that dying by NIDs would be painful, Maria opted to let herself get shot instead of trying to escape with Shadow.
- Not much of Maria's personality and behavior has been shown besides Shadow's (rather idealized, sometimes unreliable) memories. As the only other members in her families are geniuses, it's often suspected she was a Child Prodigy herself. Some fans interpret her as having intentionally portrayed herself as an ever-adorable, optimistic child in order to hide her more intuitive and precocious aspects.
- Maria is usually depicted as calm and gentle, but it's also possible to interpret her as having an edge to her character or even being a Genki Girl. A flashback in Shadow the Hedgehog depicts her running after, and scolding, the G.U.N. Commander as a child, showing she wasn't always mellow. She's also compared to Amy by Shadow (in particular, their caring natures).
- Sonic the Comic:
- Is Sonic really a Celibate Hero who dislikes Amy's flirting or is he being tsundere?
- Is Amy genuinely in love with Sonic or is she just teasing him for fun? This is made more ambiguous by Characterization Marches On, as Amy's flirting disappeared due to her executive-mandated change of character. Then there are those who take the route that not only is Amy only teasing, but she's not into men.
- Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM): In the second season, Robotnik becomes a lot less competent and acting more For the Evulz. This could be the result of gradually losing what little sanity he had in the first season that makes him act irrationally.
- Sonic Underground:
- The Oracle of Delphius could actually be the true Big Bad of the show. He has amazing powers and could have killed Robotnik in his own bedroom as shown in a flashback in the first episode, but he instead gives him the heads up about the prophecy, which gets Robotnik to start looking for the trio. Also in the same episode, if he hadn't directed the trio to meet at a public place then their foster parents would have been safe and not turned into robots; as if the Oracle is going with an, 'I'll finish off whoever is left in the end' approach. Alternatively, the Oracle just likes to mess around with people.
- Queen Aleena is sometimes interpreted as a dead-beat mom trying to stay as far away from her children as possible while preaching about "responsibility" and "not turning away from the past." If she's not out-and-out abandoning her offspring, she cares about Sonia to a greater extent than her sons.
- There's a point where Sleet and Dingo stop being typical Saturday morning cartoon villains and become tired employees threatened into a job they don't want at all, even purposely engaging in counterproductive work behavior to spite their boss.
- Sonic Boom:
- This friendlier incarnation of Amy Rose. Is she innocently unaware of her behavior's effect on the cast, or secretly messing with them for laughs?
- Sonic is actually a depressed manchild, and the entire show is his imagination. This is supported by the memetic scene from "Just a Guy" where Sonic is woken from one too many layers of "happy places" and is shown as a live-action guy (in full cosplay) taking out the trash.