While the Sonic the Hedgehog
franchise has grown up
, it doesn't always show
when it comes to the writing.
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The 8-bit/16-bit games
- Sonic the Hedgehog CD features the Metallic Madness Bad Future theme in the Japanese version. The robotic voice of Dr. Eggman taunting you would be a tad more menacing, but then he throws in the line "Get some help!" It sounds like he's encouraging the player to to seek out a therapist, or to go look up GameFAQs to figure out how to get the Good Future instead.
- Let's start with this line from the opening scene:
- What really pushes this into Narm territory is the fact that, upon receiving this order, the kneeling police officers calmly get to their feet and proceed to moonwalk away from Chaos.
- "Watch out, you're gonna crash! AAH!" Made more ridiculous by the way his tongue sticks out at the end of that line. Doubly so since he does that expression a few times. Stick out spines and poke tongue out. It's almost adorable.
- Sonic half-yelling "Eeeeeeeeegmaaaaaaan" with all the passion and rage of a waitress reciting the beer menu. (To be fair, he had just gotten a face-full of sleeping gas and was about to lose consciousness. But then you'd expect him to be slurring his words, not trailing off.) Tails' version of it is even funnier. He sounds like a zombie.
- Once Chaos gets the first Emerald, Sonic tells Tails "We can't let that monster get any bigger. It could get ugly!" It sounds more like he's worried about how hideous Chaos will look, rather than the danger he poses.
- "All's well that ends well, right?" Made even funnier if you've seen the Hellfire Commentaries play-through of it:
- Let's not forget the infamous Tails line, "That's Eggman! I wonder what happened to Sonic?" The casual delivery of the line — coupled with an accent that sounds more Indian than anything else — makes Tails sound less concerned about his friend potentially being in danger, and more like like he was expecting Sonic to show up at a party.
- There is a cutscene where Knuckles spots Dr. Eggman in the hotel lobby holding what suspiciously looks like a Master Emerald piece, for some reason moving at a slower pace than he walks. Cue Knuckles frantically shouting "Hold on! Come back here!" at the doctor as the latter leisurely slides towards the door at a snail's pace, and yet still failing to catch up.
- Afterwards, once Chaos 2 is defeated, Eggman reveals to Knuckles that Sonic is (allegedly) also hunting down the pieces of the Master Emeralds, followed by Knuckles slowly, dejectedly walking towards Eggman for some odd reason, head facing down towards the ground. It doesn't help that his walking animation continues to run even after he's stopped to think about it.
- After completing the Sky Deck and leaving the pool in Knuckles' storyline, there is a cutscene in which Knuckles witnesses Chaos' transformation into Chaos 6 some distance away. It would be an okay scene, but for some reason the game plays his "drowning" death vocal; making it seem like he drowned in the air at the sight. It really doesn't help that said voice clip sounds like he's been possessed by Goofy.
Sonic Adventure 2
- Even though Sonic Adventure 2 was made in America, the script apparently got translated to Japanese and then back into English, rendering lines that were only sometimes comprehensible, rarely synced to the mouth movements, and even overlapped each other. "He must be using the Chaos Emerald to wa...[rp]" "[My]...name is Shadow.". Let's not forget how some of the lines were left completely untranslated.
- This exchange:
Shadow: Faker? I think YOU'RE the fake hedgehog around here! You're comparing yourself to me?! HA! You're not even good enough to be [my fake]!
Sonic: [I'll make] you eat those words!
- Worse, sometimes the overlapping was between lines spoken by the same character. "Hey. It's not his spee[d]. [H]e must be using the Chaos Emerald to war[p]."
- Then there's an instance where Eggman is supposed to cut off another character, but because of Japanese and English's different sentence structures, he reacts about a second too early.
Reporter: Mysteriously, the only thing that was stolen was th—
Eggman: The Chaos Emerald?!
Reporter: —aos Emerald.
- Sonic's finishing blow to the Egg Golem in the Dark story:
- Tails' reaction to Sonic's (apparent) death was something of a Dull Surprise.
Tails: What have you done, to Sonic? I'll never forgive you for this.
- Before the scene above, there's the scene where Sonic tries to give the fake Chaos Emerald to Eggman. When Eggman traps him, Sonic gives out a "Whoa.", while his mouth is stretched out to comically large proportions. Even worse, the "Whoa" is the same thing he says during playtime when the player has him an inch away from falling off a cliff.
- During both Sonic and Shadow Duel Boss fights, if you're using Sonic and hit Shadow enough times, Shadow will drop these gems:
Shadow (first battle): I'm the coolest!
- Before their first battle in Green Forest on the Hero side, you see Shadow jump down onto the platform Sonic's on. While it looks cool, Shadow's model does not have a mouth and has hilariously drooped down eyebrows, all while he's saying, "There's no time to play games. You won't even get the chance!", as if Shadow is a wet blanket that doesn't want Sonic to have any fun.
- The final fight with the FinalHazard. The Biolizard's merged with the Space Colony ARK to expedite its descent onto Earth, so Super Sonic and Super Shadow head out to stop it. The battle itself is epic, complete with Crush 40's "Live and Learn" blaring out, but the final boss itself becomes a lot more silly, since it looks more like the Biolizard has the ARK's Eclipse Cannon shoved up its arse.
- In the Hero Story, Sonic says this line, "I've got to find Amy and Tails right away!" with his teeth clenched. He actually moves his mouth in the Dark Story, but that doesn't excuse how he can do that in the Hero story.
- In the last story, we have this hilarious moment. The colony starts falling, Sonic and Knuckles feel the sudden vibration and realize something bad is happening. Rouge appears and explains the situation in a completely deadpan voice... and then she opens her mouth and eyes widely, after Gerald's last message suddenly pops up on a screen nearby.
- The last story. Sonic and Shadow are preparing to go into their super forms to fight the Biohazard and save the earth. Knuckles watches them, transfixed in awe... with the most vacant expression ever on his face.
- Before Amy busts Sonic out of his cell, he says the reason he's imprisoned is because of "that fake hedgehog." What makes it funny is that Sonic can't be bothered to interrupt his little exercise session.
- For such a stoic character, Shadow has quite the hammy displays at times, enhanced by his permanent frown and his English VA's delivery:
(talking to no one
) It all starts with this... (brandishes Chaos Emerald over his head
) A jewel containing the uuuuuultimate poooooweeeeeeer! 
(speaking slowly to Eggman
) I've been waiting for you, Doctor. Now, I will show the glooorious achievement of what the world's leading scientist, Professor Gerald, has created. (...) A weapon capable of destroying an entire planet. (points index finger skywards
) Codenamed: The Eclipse Cannon! (clenches hand into a fist, beat, extends arms to the sides
) Once you have that, then you have the ultimate power of destruction to use as you please. And then... (closeup on face
) the wooorld... could be yooours! 
- Is that what...Chaos Control is?! — Said by Shadow, the first person to use Chaos Control in the series.
- Some of Eggman's lines are pretty strangely delivered.
(in the cutscene leading up to Cannon's Core
) Then, let's get to WOOOOORK!
(said when Sonic enters the last room in Crazy Gadget) Well done, Sonic! But you'll never leave this room alive! Ha-HA!
- That last line is delivered so strangely, it doesn't even sound like Eggman.
- At the beginning of Rouge's driving stage:
(spoken normally) I'm picking up a signal from the Emerald. (amazingly high-pitched and whiny) Fox boy, wait for meeee!
- And then there's the immortal line, "We all did it together!" Making this even worse is that it comes right after Eggman makes a surprisingly emotional and genuinely well-acted speech about his grandfather. Nice job ruining the moment, Tails!
Shadow the Hedgehog
- The game has a copious amount of swearing to give the game an E10+ rating, but it also tries to avoid the T rating by never using any serious swears. This leads to the word "damn" being used in ridiculous quantity by several characters (including Sonic himself at one point), which sounds like a twelve-year-old trying to be cool and edgy. And then there's this legendary line:
- On that note, the game's strange tendency to capitalize the number of each Chaos Emerald, which makes it seem like an Edutainment Game trying to teach numbers to children. In the case of the above line, this causes the subtitles to put emphasis on the wrong word ("Where's that damn FOURTH Chaos Emerald?").
- Shadow's Pre-Asskicking One-Liner towards Eggman, "You're going straight to hell!" Which is the only time a swear word that isn't "damn" is used in the entire game.
- The fact that the entire reason the GUN Commander seeks vengeance on Shadow for the death of Maria... is because he witnessed Shadow's creation in the space colony as a kid and was horrified. Let us elaborate: kid GUN Commander — who prior to that point was cheerfully playing around in the same space colony that housed the creation of a giant mutant lizard and the berserk bionic clones of a god that destroyed an ancient civilization just before — was apparently so traumatized by the sight of a fucking cartoon hedgehog that he seeks to avenge Maria's murder at the alleged hands of said hedgehog by joining the very organization that was actually responsible for her death.
- Not helping this scene was the introduction before it, in which the GUN Commander gives a speech about Maria being like his sister over a flashback of the two of them on the ARK. Would have been more dramatic, except the GUN Commander as a kid tauntingly spanks himself as if to say that Maria can't catch him, all while on a big, dramatic space station. And the gesture looks very, very silly.
- In the Last Story, as Black Doom sics his Black Leeches on the paralyzed heroes:
: "Ah, my dear offspring... eat and devour
these savory dishes!!!"
- Upon discovering Eggman's fleet of Shadow Androids, Shadow goes on to utter the following line with downright Shatnerian diction:
Shadow: Shadow.... ANDROID?! Am I... an... android TOO?!
- One level later, Shadow asks Eggman if he is indeed an android. Eggman confirms this, but Shadow's reaction is a very confused "What?", like he didn't actually expect Eggman to say yes.
- This "revelation" is even more hilarious if you complete the Hero mission on Air Fleet or the Dark mission on Space Gadget. Despite never seeing a Shadow Android in those stages (at least, in Iron Jungle's Neutral mission, he does encounter them, so there was some kind of logic behind that), for no logical or discernible reason, he still jumps to the conclusion that he's an Android.
- During the Glyphic Canyon level, when you've got Knuckles with you, there is a segment where you have to walk into a tornado to progress. What does Knuckles have to say while you're doing this? "HELP!!! WE'RE BEING SUCKED IN!!!". This is made much more hilarious for two reasons: the first is that Knuckles is voiced by the glorious Dan Green, and the second is that, if you wait around on the bridge for a bit, Knuckles will tell you to walk into the tornado.
- Apparently, the President has a framed photo of Sonic and Shadow on his desk. Not his wife, his kids, or any other close friend or family member—Sonic and Shadow.
: (cracking up
) The only thing that was missing was him, like, gently running an index finger across Sonic's face!
- After Cosmic Fall, if you go for the Hero ending of the Hero pathway, Shadow will lament that he should never have been created. This Tear Jerker moment is then promptly ruined by Vector blurting out "Hey, don't go there...yet!" in his exceedingly goofy voice.
- The Pure Hero Dark Ending: After defeating Sonic, Shadow goes on to proclaim...
- Shadow taking the Chaos Emerald powering the space colony he's on, causing it to meltdown which prompts him to make this face.◊ The dialogue immediately preceding this shot is incredible too, especially if you're playing on a more heroic route.
" A Chaos Emerald? You've gotta be kidding me, guys. This is like taking candy from a baby. Which is fine by me."
Sonic the Hedgehog (2006)
- Sonic's death scene. The overdramatic slow-mo fall, Princess Elise's Big "NO!", the organ that plays like an old-timey film, the total randomness of the murder, Mephiles laughing like a middle school bully at it afterward, or the simple fact that being impaled by a laser lance of death apparently doesn't leave a single mark on him.
- In Sonic's boss battle with Silver. "It's no use!" While meant to cause fear, surprise, or even wonder, it quickly becomes Narmy, and even more quickly becomes frustrating; especially after the 20th or 30th time.
- Shadow dramatically pointing at Sonic after saying, "Yes, but that alone is insufficient." And the camera zooming in on Sonic immediately after, as if the game suddenly turned into Ace Attorney.
- Sonic's "Test of Love." If an oracle using "dramatic" lines to tell you to choose between two girls in a mission that's so random it's basically a Big-Lipped Alligator Moment isn't enough for you, keep in mind that this supposedly dramatic choice used the same upbeat little tune all the other missions use. It also has absolutely no effect on the plot afterwards, making it 100% pointless.
- During the final boss of Sonic's story, Eggman will occasionally yell "Fall!", sounding less like an evil genius trying to kill you and more like a little kid who was one pin away from getting a strike in bowling. And then there is his infamous defeat animation; Eggman ejecting from his hovering vehicle, still attached to his seat, then plummeting from the air before suddenly cartwheeling to the left of the screen, all animated in a very lazy manner befitting a Stylistic Suck animation.
- For some reason, every time a character makes a motion with their hand, there's a sound effect like a glove being shaken. It's kind of funny that the programmers thought that was important to put that effect in there, and funnier still when there's a dramatic/sad/important moment, and it gets botched by the stupid sound effect.
- What about the part where Mephiles twirls? As seen here, he sort of pirouettes off screen. It's supposed to be teleportation, but it looks more like he's auditioning for the role of Rothbart.
- Sonic was apparently tortured for 6 months after being captured, yet is still as cheerful and snarky as ever, with no visible physical or mental repercussions. In fact, this part was only added in the English script, as no such thing is mentioned in the original/Japanese script.
- The six-month time skip really doesn't track with the war the game is depicting. For starters, when Sonic first fought Infinite, Eggman's sentinels have already destroyed the city. Six months later, they are still destroying the same city. The Sonics and the Avatar have made more progress fighting Eggman in a few days than the Resistance has in six months. Conversely, the narration implies that Eggman almost immediately took over the world, yet still hasn't finished off the Resistance (though he was close to doing so with his virtual sun).
- When Eggman expresses disbelief at Sonic managing to escape Null Space, Sonics response is so ridiculously on-the-nose that it sounds like something a certain other anthropomorphic character would say.
Maybe by myself, but I had a little help from my friend. Something you wouldnt understand, since you dont have any friends!
- The Avatar stage that deals with Infinite creating and dropping a sun on the Resistance contains rather literal lyrics singing about how the sun is falling from the sky and that the final battle has begun. There's a reason why people consider situational lyrics to be extremely cheesy, but this is overdoing it even for Sonic standards!
- Silver continues his run at hilarious lines with this gem:
Silver: I'm an optimist, but i'm also a realist.
- After saying this, he presumes that Sonic is dead even though he was taken alive, and Tails has gone insane even though hes clearly fine... like any optimist would.
- Episode Shadow gives us Infinite's entire reason for becoming the villain he is today: Shadow beating him up and calling him weak, sending him into a disproportionate Villanous Breakdown. With that context, along with how Infinite touts himself as the "ultimate mercenary" before getting his ass handed to him, he seems less like the newest, baddest Knight of Cerebus on the block and more like a kid throwing the mother of all tantrums because someone else out-edged him.
- When Sonic gets trapped in Null Space, he talks about heading back in such a casual way that it sounds like he's more confused than alarmed by the situation. And then he and the Avatar escape the dimension immediately afterwards, by basically running really fast, making the whole sequence pretty pointless.
- Knuckles delivers a cheesy War Is Hell line that would be laughed off in a story about The Vietnam War, let alone a Sonic game.
Knuckles: (in response to "Oh man, that's not good.") None of this is good, Vector. That's why it's called "war."
- During a large battle sequence in the war, everyone gets to visibly beat the crap out of opponents, even if it's just a single hit per character. Then Amy comes in with her Piko-Piko Hammer and slams an enemy with it... just off-camera. Apparently, it's fine to punch people in the face or with a stinger, but visibly hitting them with a weapon is a big no-no.
- The same applies to the Red Shirt Resistance members, who never once visibly hit a single thing with their Family-Friendly Firearms, and yet it's perfectly fine for Infinite to kill them with explosions in front of them, Power Rangers-style. Worse yet, Omega appears to pull off a Big Damn Heroes and shoots at Infinite for three seconds. Not only do they basically do nothing on-screen for the rest of the game, not even getting a chance to shoot any other enemies, but Eggman's sun plan happens immediately afterwards, completely making their appearance moot. And yet Rouge still pulls a Lampshade Hanging about it as if it was some big moment in the ending.
- The fact that the Egg Pawns don't attack Sonic at all in the first levels. They do in later stages, but they're still pathetically ineffective, and then you remember that Eggman conquered the world with those things as his foot soldiers.
- The very ending of the game has a couple of big moments. Classic Sonic fading away is presented as like he is dying or something, and Tails telling him "You'll always be our shining hope." Sonic gives a little speech about fixing the damage Eggman has done could qualify, but just like in Adventure 2, Tails' response completely ruins the moment, and in this particular case, it is completely out-of-character. His response? Saying "True dat." like he's trying to be some sort of hip street kid or something!
- At the end of Infinite's last boss battle, his defeat just shows him stiffly and anticlimactically falling onto the ground like a dropped ragdoll, or a marionette that's just had its strings cut.
- Despite the game supposedly being Darker and Edgier, involving La Résistance fighting to save a ruined world from an already-victorious Eggman, it got a cross-promotion with Chuck E. Cheese of all places.
- The city that the city stages take place in, and the setting of most of the promotional material, has no actual name. The game just calls it "City", with nothing else before or after. Similarly, the Classic Sonic stages in returning zones have the same name as the zones, so you get "Green Hill: Green Hill." The soundtrack gives those stages official names (Green Hill is Faded Hills, Chemical Plant is Chemical Flow, Death Egg is Death Prison), which makes it even more jarring. Even those names in themselves are very "3edgy5me".
- The sheer ridiculousness of the scene in which Classic Sonic is reintroduced. Tails finds E-123 Omega and is unable to fix him — despite previously being established to be capable of truly insane technological feats, so really, it should be second nature to someone like him by then — and then being attacked by a clone of Chaos Zero. Considering Tails previously fought and beat the much stronger Chaos Four, no sweat for him, right? Wrong. Instead, it leads to probably the most emblematic proof of Tails' Badass Decay, needing Classic Sonic to dramatically save him from a foe he could easily beat alone anywhere else.
Tails: Whoa, Chaos! (cowers on the floor with his head in his hands) SONIC, HELP ME!
- Needless to say, fans of Tails were left rolling their eyes in disgust at both Tails' ineptitude through this scene — and indeed, the whole game — and at the shoddy attempt at creating drama through it. In fact, this bit was infamous to the point where a game mod of Sonic 2 was made that ruthlessly parodied it, which causes Tails to stop and cower in place while yelling a digitised clip of "SONIC, HELP ME!" every time a Badnik appears on-screen, and he only starts moving again when it's destroyed.
- After beating Sonic Boom's first wave of enemies early on, the following cutscene shows Sonic and the gang outnumbered by Metal Sonic and his army of robots, only for the latter group to get hit with a bad case of Bond Villain Stupidity and approach no faster than marching pace, giving the heroes more than enough time to escape into the ancient temple behind them. The real source of Narm, however, is the way Metal goes after Sonic before getting locked out by the temple gate at the last moment; what is clearly meant to be a no-nonsense, "You will not evade me" Ominous Walk ends up looking like an awkwardly frantic powerwalk instead, as if Metal is having a Potty Emergency.
- Pictured above: the breakup scene between Sally and Sonic in issue 134 of the Archie comic. What's supposed to be a serious moment is absolutely ruined by the panels where Sally's mouth is opened so wide that it not only takes up most of her head, but you'd swear she's trying to inhale him like Kirby. The infamous slap panel also suffers from this issue, as well as making Sonic look like he's getting a Dope Slap as opposed to the intended serious kind; complete with him being sent flying backwards several feet with a derpy-eyed expression. Hell, it looks more like a comedic panel than a dramatic one.
- In Sonic Lost World, right after Tails gets knocked into a trap meant for Sonic, the hedgehog exclaims: "Those rotten, sneaky..." It feels less like him being angered by the fact that his best friend is now in the hands of the Deadly Six and more like he just got pickpocketed by kids.