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Creator / Ian Flynn

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Ian Flynn (born May 31, 1982), also known by his Internet pen name Ian Potto, is an American freelance comic book writer. He is mostly known for his work on Archie Comics' version of Sonic the Hedgehog, where he took over as head writer from Issue #160 until the comic's cancellation. His writing on the comics being generally well-liked, he returned to the position for the next incarnation of the comic after it performed a Channel Hop to IDW Publishing. Aside from this, he has also wrote the official tie-in comics for some of the Sonic video games. And, in 2022, was announced to be writing one himself. Besides Sonic comics, he is also known for his work on the comic versions of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Mega Man, as well quite a few of Archie Comics' other series.

A Promoted Fanboy, Flynn's early work was in Fan Fiction, most notably the Sonic Fan Web Comic, Other-M. Being a fan of most of the properties he writes for also means that his works tends to often feature Mythology Gags (at times really obscure ones) and Ascended Memes. Similar to Geoff Johns, Flynn also will drudge up obscure characters (i.e. Nack the Weasel, Bean the Dynamite Duck, Bark the Polar Bear, Honey the Cat, and Breezie the Hedgehog for example) and revamp them for the modern audience, giving them distinct and impactful personality traits to ensure they stick to the readers. His work is big on characterization. He long since has had a desire to work on a Sonic game, having volunteered to write the localization script for Sonic Forces, which instead was written by Ken Pontac and Warren Graff (Happy Tree Friends), as the previous four installments. He got his wish, however, by working on the scripts for Sonic Frontiers and the cutscenes added to Compilation Rerelease Sonic Origins.

His Twitter account can be found here, and his personal webpage can be found here. He also hosts a bi-weekly podcast covering all forms of geekdom called the BumbleKast alongside his friend Kyle Crouse. Episodes of the podcast can be found here.


Tropes featured in his work:

  • Ascended Meme: During Ian Flynn's run on Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics), he decided to take a couple of fan ideas and play with them.
    • In Issue 205, an insane Dr. Eggman catches Snively sneaking around and declares that he is "Snoo-ping as usual!", a call back to the infamous PINGAS meme from Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. The same issue depicts Eggman saying "It's from the show!", a Shout-Out to a YouTube Poop Music video.
    • The Tails Doll, a playable doppelganger of Sonic's best friend Tails was introduced in Sonic R, but other than that he was a rather unremarkable Living Prop. Due to the creepy nature of the design, he became rather popular to imagine as an otherworldly monster in Creepypasta, with the parodic Sonic Shorts taking a hand in popularizing the concept. When Flynn introduced him, he ran with this concept for Tails Doll, who was a demonic looking Mechanical Abomination inside the innocent-looking doll. The IDW 30th anniversary special also includes a nod to Tails Doll's creepiness by having it act as Eggman's surveillance drone, though he also cuddles with it when nobody's looking. Interestingly enough, a Fandom Nod to the Tails Doll already existed in Sonic X issue 21, but it was written by Mike Bullock.
  • Creator's Favorite:
    • According to his website, Flynn's favorite characters from the Sonic games are Knuckles the Echidna, Dr. Eggman, and Bean the Dynamite.
    • The same website lists Relic, Eclipse and Shard the Metal Sonic from Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics). In Segabit's Ask Ian #6 Podcast, he claims Finitevus is one of his favorites to write.
    • The website claims his favorite character to write in the IDW title is Tangle the Lemur.
    • In a live Q&A, he comments that Sonic the Hedgehog/Mega Man: Worlds Collide is one of the biggest highlights of his career.
  • Creator's Pest: From the video games, Ian Flynn has expressed dislike towards Dr. Eggman Nega from Sonic Rush and Sonic Rivals, finding his name and design uninspired. Nega is one of the few characters Sega never allowed him to write, meaning he also has very little experience with him.
  • Creator's Favorite Episode:
    • According to an interview with Sonic Fan Games HQ, one of his favorite interactions with Eggman comes from issue 220 of Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics).
    • Issue 3 of Sonic Universe is shared as one of his favorite experiences with the title. In it, he wrote Gamma's fight with Omega before his eventual sacrifice, and it was also the first story where the wrote E-123 Omega.
  • Fan-Work Ban: Ian doesn't watch fan works based on the comics he works with, but this is self-imposed on his part. Neither Sega nor IDW have prohibited him from viewing the material, that's just something he does to avoid ripping off someone else's content. He's also mentioned doing the same for Megaman out of an abundance of caution.
  • Favorite Trope: Discussed in BumbleKast, where Flynn admits he loves the "eloquent monster" trope, and it's how he writes Zavok in the IDW Sonic series.
  • Irony: Flynn has made it clear multiple times that he hates Sonic Heroes. Despite this, most of his work in Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW) involves using concepts and ideas from Heroes, with Neo Metal Sonic as the first Arc Villain. The irony wasn't lost on him:
    Sonic Heroes is one of my least favorite games. Why the hell am I pulling so much from it?
  • Signature Style: Ian is known to quote song lyrics and use numerous characters in his stories.
  • Teasing Creator: Usually responds to fan theories or questions with #Knowingsmile when he wants to tease fans about things that he can't reveal yet. So much so that merchandise based off of this Catchphrase can be bought in the Bumble Store.
  • What Could Have Been: He once pitched a Super Mario Bros. comic to Nintendo, and while the American division enjoyed the pitch the Japanese rejected it. Flynn later stated that if he made the pitch today, he would have made it Lighter and Softer as while drama worked for the action-based “Sonic” and “Mega Man”, not so much for a whimsical series like Mario.