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Comic Book / Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW)

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In 1993, video game superstar Sonic the Hedgehog scored himself a comic book series by Archie Comics. But after 24 years, a whopping 290 issues, a Soft Reboot, and constant screwings from lawyers, the series officially ended on July 19, 2017 when SEGA formally ended its relationship with Archie Comics. Two days later, however, on July 21, IDW Publishing announced that it was far from being all over, as they had successfully obtained the license to publish a new series of Sonic the Hedgehog comics.

The comic is a clean slate Continuity Reboot, and some Archie Sonic alumni have returned to work on the comic, including writer Ian Flynn, who was with the Archie series from its 160th issue until its cancellation. The storylines are divided into "seasons" roughly a year long.

In a Forces-like continuity separate from the games, a month has passed since Dr. Eggman tried to raze the world with the power of the Phantom Ruby. But after that battle, the doctor just disappeared, leaving his Badnik army to roam the land, being more of a nuisance than anything else. Sonic is still cleaning up the mess his nemesis did to world, but then the 'bots suddenly start to perform coordinated attacks against the populace, with no signs of Eggman's involvement. He will have to team up with both old and new friends to unravel this mystery and put an stop to this threat!


It kicked off on April 4, 2018, with the first 4 issues having weekly installments in April and then monthly updates come May 2018. During Wondercon 2019, the staff revealed the first spin-off mini-series of the series, Tangle and Whisper, due out later in the summer of the same year. This'll be the third time a non-Sega character got their own mini-series within a Sonic comic (Sally had her own mini back in the 90s and Scourge received his own story arc in Sonic Universe).


Tropes include:

  • Adapted Out: All of the characters Ian Flynn created for Archie Sonic will not be returning, due to wanting a clean slate.
    • Zig-Zagged in relation to the events of Forces; despite taking part directly after Forces, only some details of the game seem to have made the jump. For example, Wispons, the general concept of the Avatar, and possibly the Phantom Ruby (through reference to the Phantom Replicas) are mentioned, but Classic Sonic and Infinite are currently not accounted for.
  • Adventure-Friendly World: With locales from the various Sonic games available, it wouldn't be amiss to say that you'd be seeing places such as Green Hill Zone, Station Square, and Soleanna show up.
  • Affirmative Action Girl: Tangle was added in order to have a girl who could easily go on cool adventures.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: The second year of the comic kicks off the Plague arc wherein Dr. Eggman unleashes a metal virus that turns organic creatures into Zombots. After dousing Rough and Tumble, Sonic is infected and tries to run the disease off to mixed results. When the outbreak hits the first named character to succumb is Charmy who tried to help a quarantined woman.
  • Airborne Aircraft Carrier: Eggman's Egg Fleet, the Flying Seafood Special-stylized armada from Heroes makes a come back, again commandeered by Neo Metal Sonic.
  • Alternate Continuity: The series is confirmed to be set in a separate continuity from the previous Sonic comics and other Sonic media, including the games (though game events still could have happened, albeit in a different way).
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: Angel Island gets taken over by the Egg Fleet by the end of Issue #8. The next several issues are dedicated to liberating it.
  • Ambiguous Situation: By the end of Issue #8, it's still unclear whether Eggman is really suffering from amnesia, or faking it. It's finally confirmed to be true in Issue #11, when Tinker is horrified at the prospect of regaining Eggman's memories.
  • Amnesiac Dissonance: Issue #5 reveals that Eggman is suffering from amnesia, having become the kindhearted Mr. Tinker. Then in Issue #11, Dr. Starline abducts him and performs a procedure to restore his memories, which kicks in during the following issue.
  • Appropriated Appellation: Sonic takes to calling people infected with Eggman's robo-virus "zombots" due to being rendered mindless by it. Eggman himself likes the name, and starts using it.
  • Armor-Piercing Response: In Issue #6, Shadow heatedly asks Sonic why he'd be willing to give the seemingly amnesiac Eggman a second chance. Sonic counters by bringing up all the things Shadow did before his own Heel–Face Turn.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Sonic and Tangle at one point during Issue #4.
  • Bad Future: Silver's reasoning for returning in issue #8. He joined the Resistance during Forces because the Eggman Empire took over. However, when he came back, everything was dead.
  • Bash Brothers: Sonic and Tails, as demonstrated right off the bat in the first issue.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Sonic and Amy have a touch of this as Amy, revealed to be one of the higher-ups of The Resistance, tries to get him back in the fold in Issue #2. Sonic even turns it on her, offering to take her on his solo travels, knowing she won’t leave her role no matter how she feels about him.
    Amy: Don’t make me slap you.
  • Big Bad: Dr. Eggman is the primary antagonist of the setting and Sonic's nemesis, as expected. However, he suffers from amnesia after the events of Sonic Forces, leaving Metal Sonic as the Big Bad for the first year of the comic. Come Issue 12, Eggman's regained his memories and mantle as the main villain.
  • Big Damn Heroes: In Issue #4, Blaze shows up just in time to save Sonic and Tangle from being overwhelmed by badniks.
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Rough and Tumble fit this mold, with Rough being shorter and less muscular than his brother, Tumble.
  • Both Sides Have a Point: In the 6th issue, Sonic tries to stop Shadow from killing an amnesiac Eggman reasoning that he's not a threat in his current state and should be left alone until he is. Shadow counters that just because one loses their memory doesn't make them any less dangerous, speaking from his own experiences. The two being who they are, naturally they can't come to a peaceful solution and opt for a violent one.
  • The Bus Came Back: Issue #7 brings back Metal Sonic, back in his "Neo" form from Heroes, as the arc's Big Bad.
    • The Babylon Rogues (Jet the Hawk, Wave the Swallow, and Storm the Albatross) come back after being completely absent in Archie Sonic's Post-Reboot.
  • Call-Back: A new antagonistic force was based on something from one of the older games. It's Metal Sonic, back in his Neo form from Sonic Heroes.
  • Call to Agriculture: The Annual shows that after the Egg Fleet's defeat in the comic's first year, Silver took to gardening as he was interested in how the planet could sustain life in a way his time couldn't. Blaze decides to help as well and though she admits to only knowing some of the basics, she manages to restore the soil and they grow a garden together.
  • Canon Foreigner: Tangle the Lemur, Whisper the Wolf, and new villains Rough and Tumble and Dr. Starline are new characters not from the games introduced in the comic.
  • Casual Danger Dialogue: As per usual, Sonic and co. don't let being in a battle interfere with their banter.
  • Continuity Cavalcade: Issue #5 has Sonic mentioning and recapping past actions of Eggman while mulling over how to deal with his supposedly amnesiac state. This includes Eggman attacking Sonic in the Egg Viper, blowing up parts of the moon as a show of the Ark's power, fighting Sonic with the Time Eater and splitting the planet apart in trying to awaken Dark Gaia.
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Continuity Reboot: This will not follow any storylines established in the Archie series, or any other adaptation. Also, none of Ian Flynn's characters will return, not even being reimagined for the new continuity, in the interest of a new clean slate.
  • Covers Always Lie: Several characters that were featured on Retail Incentive covers hadn't yet debuted in the series. Cream the Rabbit, E-123 Omega, and G-Merl were all on covers for the first year's arc and they wouldn't appear until year two.
  • Crush Blush: Amy briefly swoons at Sonic's loner attitude toward the end of Issue #2, but quickly snaps herself out of it.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Neo Metal Sonic lays one down to Sonic and Knuckles once he's powered up by the Master Emerald. It's only thanks to Shadow's intervention that he doesn't beat them both outright.
  • Day of the Jackboot: After Angel Island is conquered by the Egg Fleet, it's quickly converted into a fortress, with a statue of Eggman being built atop the Master Emerald's chamber.
  • Debut Queue: The first four issues feature Sonic teaming with Tails, Amy, Knuckles and Blaze respectively. The third issue also features the debut of the Canon Foreigner villains Rough and Tumble, with Tangle the Ring-tailed Lemur following in Issue #4, the Chaotix in Issue #5, and Shadow and Rouge in Issue #6. Issue #7 features the return of Neo Metal Sonic, and the 8th issue has both the return of Silver and the debut of another new character, Whisper the Wolf.
  • Decapitated Army: Eggman's disappearance after the events of Sonic Forces left his Badnik army aimless and attacking locals randomly. However, by the time events of issue 1, they've had become much more organized. This leads Tails and Sonic to determine that something is controlling the army. Later issues confirm it's not bad ol' Doc (who probably suffers from amnesia) that's back, but Neo Metal Sonic, who commands Eggman's forces until his creator returns.
  • Disability Immunity: Because he was already infected by the Metal Virus, with his speed keeping it in check, Sonic is the only one who can fight zombots directly without spreading the contagion. Contact with them causes his own infection to jumpstart, though, so he can't fight for long periods of time.
  • Discard and Draw: The Metal Virus does this to Rough and Tumble. In addition to losing their free will, they lose their speed, spin attack, and durability. However they gain a Healing Factor to compensate for their fragile forms and they become virus carriers.
  • The Dog Bites Back: A village ended up being taken over by Rough and Tumble, stealing away their Wisps and Wispons. Sonic reminds the Wisps of the good they've done helping him, in turn getting them to turn against the bullies.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: In the Annual, the Babylon Rogues rob a museum full of Gems, and Storm accidentally grabs the curator, mistaking her shiny shell armor for a diamond. Upon finding her, Wave demands they return her as they're thieves, not kidnappers. Storm tosses her out of their ship and accidently damages her wing, sending her falling, which makes Jet and Wave angrier because they didn't want her getting hurt.
  • Evil Overlooker: The cover for Issue #10 features Neo Metal Sonic looking down at Sonic and friends.
  • Fastball Special:
    • At one point in Issue #2, Sonic had Amy hit him with her hammer, firing him off like a croquet ball.
    • During the climax of the fight in Issue 4, Tangle uses her tail as a slingshot to launch Sonic and Blaze into the carrier dropping Badniks onto Tangle's hometown.
    • Sonic with Sliver does an highly effective crowd-control version of this.
  • The Fellowship Has Ended: After putting down Neo Metal Sonic, Knuckles decides to disband the Resistance so he can get back to guarding the Master Emerald. Amy doesn't take that lightly.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Issue #8 has Silver get away with saying "crap." Not super-strong language or anything, but still surprising to see in an all-ages book.
  • Godzilla Threshold: Blaze notes that using all the Sol Emeralds to enter her Super Mode is extremely risky, but decides that liberating Angel Island is worth that risk.
  • Gondor Calls for Aid: Issue #9 opens with the Resistance gathering every heroic character introduced over the previous eight issues in order to liberate Angel Island.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: In Issue #7, after Sonic is put on the ropes, he notes that it's time to bail now that "señor Starfish-Head (AKA Neo Metal Sonic)'' entered the picture.
  • Hero-Worshipper:
    • The villagers Sonic saves in the first issue are thrilled and awestruck to be in his presence, with one saying that the attack is worth it just to be able to say he winked at them.
    • Tangle becomes this for Blaze after first seeing her in action.
      Tangle: You. Are. Awesome!
    • Silver gets excited when it appears that the Resistance’s “Guardian Angel” (Whisper the Wolf) is in the same Eggman base as them.
  • Idiosyncratic Cover Art: The covers of the first four issues form a larger picture.
  • Kick the Dog: Where does Eggman conduct a mass test of the Metal Virus? The same village that took him in as the amnesiac Mr. Tinker.
  • La Résistance: The Resistance from Sonic Forces is back and still active, since cleaning up after the war is no overnight matter, plus the Badnik army becoming more competent necessities their continuing operation. Amy tries to convince Sonic to join back with them in Issue #7, but he declines on the grounds that belonging to an organization is simply not his thing. That said, he does join back up with the others after learning that Neo Metal Sonic is the one in control of the Badniks.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: Issue #6 is all about a fight between Sonic and Shadow concerning what to do about Mr. Tinker, AKA the amnesiac Robotnik... with was set up by Rouge - she planned that a brawl with the blue blur would clear Shadow's head enough to consider not to outright murder the Doctor.
  • Lie Back and Think of England: A rare non-sexual example: Dr. Starline tells Mr. Tinker to "lie back, relax, and think of Eggmanland" when about to painfully restore his memories of being Eggman.
  • Motive Rant: Starline gives one upon meeting Sonic and Silver in Issue #14. They're unimpressed, viewing him as creepy and crazy.
  • My Significance Sense Is Tingling: Knuckles senses that something is wrong with the Master Emerald. It’s revealed that Neo Metal Sonic is using it as his throne.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Sonic groans at Rough and Tumble, claiming they make "the Hooligans" look good, an obvious call back to Nack, Bean and Bark, who were known as "Team Hooligan" in the old Archie comics.
    • The first animal friend we see Sonic pal around with in issue 5 is a Ricky. Back in the early western continuity, this particular critter and its counterparts had the name "Sally Acorn"; the most famous of these Sallies was one of Sonic's dearest companions in SatAM and Archie continuity.
    • When Sonic and Espio talk to a village mayor about all the good things Eggman did for the town under amnesia, Sonic quips "This was much easier when it was just 'I hate that hedgehog'", Eggman's catchphrase from the old cartoons.
      • This is echoed with Amy revealing that the password for the Eggman Empire's network is usually some variation of "H4T3TH4TH3DGEH0G."
    • In Issue #7, when Sonic jumps off Tails' plane onto Eggman's airship, he crosses his legs and puts his hands behind his head while in freefall for a bit which he can do in Sonic Lost World and Sonic Forces if you don't press anything in freefalling 3D sections.
    • Likewise in Issue #7, when Neo Metal Sonic is about to drop him to his doom from atop his airship, Sonic says "I never fear the fall". This line is directly taken from "His World", his theme song from Sonic the Hedgehog (2006).
    • Issue #9 has a few allusions to Sonic Heroes, from the Chaotix hanging onto Charmy identically to Flight formation from that game to Neo Metal Sonic quoting lines from "What I'm Made Of", the theme of his boss fight as Metal Overlord, as he uses the Master Emerald to power up into his Super Mode. Said Super Mode is also a reminiscent of what Mecha Sonic did in Sonic 3 & Knuckles.
    • In Issue #10, Mr. Tinker sings a much more friendly version of E.G.G.M.A.N., "his" theme from Sonic Adventure 2. Neo Metal Sonic's One-Winged Angel form of "Master Overlord" is a straight send-up to his Metal Overlord form from Sonic Heroes as well.
    • In issue #12, Shadow's taken off before any chance of a celebration can follow the final battle. Rouge assures us that "he's gone, never to look back again", a paraphrased quote from the True Ending song of his title game. Similarly, Eggman muses to Dr. Starline that despite the potential to restart Neo Metal Sonic's plan with greater success, "it's time for a change of pace", itself a line from Sonic Unleashed.
    • The metal virus is quite similar to how Dr. Eggman was able to roboticize others with a mere touch during a brief period in the Archie comic.
      • Those affected by said metal virus end up becoming chrome-tinted versions of themselves with red/black eyes, which seems to be based on the "metal skin" Easter Egg from Sonic Heroes's two-player mode.
    • In issue #15 Amy finds Eggman's planned means of distributing the virus: a miniaturized version of the Ark from Sonic Adventure 2.
    • In issue 16, Sonic being infected and being a slight liability has him being reminded of turning into the Werehog and being pierced by the flaming arrow.
    • In issue 17, Team Chaotix get a call telling them about the Metal Virus. The room they're in is shot-for-shot their office in Sonic Heroes.
  • Never Recycle Your Schemes: After catching up on everything that happened while he was amnesiac, Eggman decides against repeating Neo Metal Sonic's recently defeated plan, even when Starline points out it could be tweaked to succeed. Instead, he moves on to something new.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Shadow pulling a Big Damn Heroes to save Sonic and Knuckles from Neo Metal Sonic winds up giving him the biodata required to go One-Winged Angel.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Referred to by name by Eggman when he "rewards" the village that took him in as Mr. Tinker by making them ground zero of the Metal Virus plague.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: If you look close enough at Tumble, you'll see that he has no gloves on. Aside from the animal friends (Flickies and the like), all animal-based characters in the Sonic games are depicted wearing gloves. In the same vein Tangle has finger-less gloves. note 
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • In issue #7, "Eggman" begins raving about his plans... only for Sonic to take the wind out of his sails rather bluntly:
      Sonic: (makes "time out" gesture) Whoa-whoa-whoa! Save the rant, faker.
    • Silver's word-for-word reaction at the end of Issue #8 to learning that Angel Island has been conquered.
    • Rough also says this word-for-word in Issue #15, when the drill tank he and Tumble are driving almost falls down a mine shaft.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: In the first issue, after defeating the Badniks that attack the town, Tails notes that, since the attack was more coordinated, this doesn't reek of Eggman since he always likes to make a showing of his attacks. The lack of fanfare's a bit spooky. It's also a hint that it's not Eggman leading the Empire at the moment, but Neo Metal Sonic.
  • Precision F-Strike: Issue #8 sees Silver drop an "Oh, Crap!" when he and Sonic learn about the situation with Angel Island.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • After Sonic and Tails beat the Egg Hammers in Issue #1, they look back at the town they just saved and see the damage caused, with some of the townsfolk again panicked. In addition, Tails is still worried about possibly losing Sonic again.
    • In Issue #15, Sonic and Amy explore an abandoned base of Eggman's that the Resistance managed to raid and liberate prisoners from during the war. However, Amy glumly mentions they lost people as well, showcasing that the war against Eggman indeed had causalities on their side.
  • Redemption Rejection: After defeating Metal Sonic, Sonic offers him a truce. Metal responds by slapping Sonic's hand away and fleeing.
  • The Reveal:
    • Issue #5 reveals Eggman has amnesia after his latest defeat and has taken up a much kinder identity as "Mr. Tinker".
    • Issue #7 reveals the mysterious figure controlling Eggman's army is Neo Metal Sonic as he attempts to find Eggman while taking over the world in his stead. And at the end of the issue, we find out he's conquered Angel Island.
    • Issue #11 reveals Mr. Tinker really is an amnesiac Dr. Eggman. He is kidnapped by Dr. Starline, a mad scientist that forcefully re-implants his memories.
  • Seldom-Seen Species: Tangle is a ring-tailed lemur.
  • Shoot the Dog: When pushed into a risky Quarantine situation with the Zombots, Team Chaotix end up prioritizing healthy people over the partially infected whom they leave behind hoping that they can come back with a cure later. Charmy takes issue with it and tries to go back, only to become infected as well. In the end, Espio drags Vector onto the escape ship before he can go back and attempt a rescue.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: In Issue #11, Master Overlord is ranting about his superiority to Sonic, only for Whisper to shoot him in the face.
    Sonic: Nice shot, Whisper. Ten points for timing.
  • Status Quo Is God: Admit it, from the moment you saw Mr. Tinker, you knew that he would go back to being Eggman again before the first year wrapped up.
  • Story Arc: The comic's story pans out in multiple smaller arcs that are tied together by an overarching narrative.
    • The first arc, running from Issues #1-#12, features the Sonic characters rebuilding after the events of Forces, dealing with Eggman's army as it comes under the control of Neo Metal Sonic, and trying to figure out the mystery of where Eggman himself disappeared to.
    • The second arc, starting in Issue #13, has Eggman restored to control of his empire and unleashing the Metal Virus on the world.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: Both Sonic and Eggman take to calling those infected by the Metal Virus "zombots".
  • Super Mode: Super Sonic is mentioned several times, but has yet to appear. There's also Burning Blaze, and Super Neo Metal Sonic.
  • Tempting Fate: #17 starts with the Chaotix being informed of the Metal Virus. While they heed the warning, Vector assures Charmy it shouldn't be coming through their door anytime soon. Not a second later, the door is kicked in and Zombots start coming into their office. The trio make their way outside only to see Eggman attacking the city with the virus.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: When Starline attempts to kill Sonic with a bombing, Eggman is furious, both because he views Sonic as his to defeat, and because he sees a mere bomb as a barbaric and unsophisticated means of victory.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Rough and Tumble, a pair of skunk brothers, are two new villains for Sonic to face.
  • Time Skip: As it carries on from Sonic Forces (or at least in a continuity similar to it), it's set one month after the ending of that game. The Resistance, who disbanded after the events of the war against Eggman, have regrouped due to both realizing restoration efforts are going to take much longer than expected and that some of Eggman's Badniks are still running amok and causing chaos.
  • Truer to the Text: Sonic and his friends skew much closer to their video game selves than the previous continuity. The biggest change is Sonic, whose portrayal dumps the 24+ year idea of being the team player and a slight womanizer with the Totally Radical attitude in favor of the gold-hearted loner who cares for his friends but hates the idea of being anchored down in one spot, preferring to run off to his next adventure.
  • Unwitting Pawn: In Issue #15, Eggman sends Rough and Tumble to fight Sonic, counting on them losing and exposing themselves to his robo-virus in the process.
  • Villain Team-Up: Starline recruits Rough and Tumble to help him find Eggman and restore his memories. Afterwards, they enter Eggman's service.
  • The Virus: The second major arc of the comic involves Sonic getting a technological virus that slowly turns him into metal, with the only way to stave it off being running at top speed.
  • Walking the Earth: The first four issues have Sonic traveling to different towns and saving them from Badniks and villains.
  • War Is Hell: Though the main war was concluded in Sonic Forces, the first few arcs deal with wartime fallout. Infrastructure needs to be rebuilt, lives were lost, repeated bombings have made large areas infertile, and an army without its head is still dangerous.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Issue #13, which reveals that Dr. Eggman has developed a virus that turns organics into machines.
    • Issue #15 Rough and Tumble are used as subjects for a field test of the Metal Virus. While Sonic and Amy manage to defeat them, Sonic ends up infected with the virus as a result.
  • Wham Line: In Issue 7, after Sonic reveals to the second Eggman that he's already met the real one.
    "Dr. Eggman": Of course you'd even ruin my feint, my loathsome copy.
    • In Issue #10, Rough and Tumble show up to capture Mr. Tinker, mentioning that "the Doc" told them he'd be a little "off". Neo Metal Sonic was unaware of Tinker's amnesia or his current location, hinting that this isn't the robot's machinations at work. Sure enough, it turns out to be the work of an all-new villain, Dr. Starline.
  • Who's on First?: When Sonic and Silver first meet Whisper the Wolf and names are exchanged.
    Whisper: Whisper.
    Sonic: Cool.
    Silver: (whispering) Okay. But... why?
    Sonic: No, genius. Whisper is her name.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: In issue #14, Eggman explains to Dr. Starline why he never just hunts down Sonic and does this.
    "I could carpet bomb him any day! That's not enough - that's not the point! I have to beat him! I have to prove I'm superior!"
  • Wrong Context Magic: The question arises in issue #8 if the Master Emerald - which can control the Chaos Emeralds - can also control the Sol Emeralds from Blaze's dimension, as Neo Metal Sonic is in possession of it and Blaze using them against him might be unwise. Knuckles believes it can't, based on a hunch and his own connection to the gemstone, but the group decides the situation is too dangerous to risk it.
    • Eggman abstains from exploring the powers of Starline's Warp Topaz for this reason; after his last plan, he's had his fill of "strange new magic stones".
  • Zombie Apocalypse: The second major story arc of the book involves Eggman starting one through a metal virus he created to be spread through the touch of others and become his slaves, with Sonic even calling them "Zombots" (A name which Eggman even approves of). Of course, since he rushed production of said virus, that doesn't bode well for how long he can control it.


Example of: