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  • Failure Is the Only Option:
    • The Games:
      • Doctor Eggman never succeeds at any of his plans in the long run, either due to Sonic getting in the way, or because whatever force he's using spirals out of his control, and whatever little victories he does earn now and then are short term at best. In Sonic Rivals, Eggman Nega, depicted as his future descendant, reveals that Eggman will never succeed, and his failures completely ruin the Robotnik family name.
      • Terminal Velocity Act 2 from Sonic Colors has Sonic trying to outrun a black hole created by the Final Boss. He does manage to last an impressive 30 seconds, though.
    • Invoked from the villain's side in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog. Mammoth Mogul can't defeat Sonic the Hedgehog? Fine. He'll just quit trying—he's immortal, after all, so he's easily going to outlast that annoying blue blur. And in the meantime he'll amuse himself making life difficult for Sonic in any way available short of outright attack.
    • Sonic Underground revolved around Sonic, Sonia, and Manic attempting to reunite with their mother at the proper time to defeat Robotnik, but the show never had a proper ending so it didn't happen.
  • Family-Friendly Firearms:
    • The Games:
      • The franchise has this - when it feels like it. Games like Sonic Heroes will have enemies fight you with bright orange laser guns, whereas Shadow the Hedgehog has you and many of your enemies using regular old bullet-firing murder-devices.
      • Forgotten character Fang the Sniper/Nack the Weasel was originally meant to have a revolver for a weapon, as seen in early screenshots of Sonic Triple Trouble. For his playable appearance in Sonic the Fighters, he was given a cork-shooting popgun.
      • On the whole, though, many of the games have realistic firearms instead of using lasers, even though it would completely make sense (for example, many of Eggman's robots have been equipped with machineguns).
      • Sonic Forces returns to this trope when the heroic Resistance are mainly armed with laser-shooting Wispon weaponry that just so happens to never hit anything on-screen. Amusingly, not only does the Avatar not actually get to use this weapon and instead have a much more strange arsenal of weapons, but Eggman's robots also fire energy shots that.. make stock bullet ping sounds when they hit objects.
    • While guns weren't all that prominent in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, when they did show up, they would inevitably be lasers—even in episodes involving time travel or references to the wild west. The only realistic firearms in the show appeared in a particular after-show Sonic Says segment, which warns about the dangers of real guns.
    • Several cuts were made in the English dub of Sonic X. For instance, several military troopers holding Sonic and his friends at gunpoint shot real bullets in the Japanese original, but were changed to lasers in the dub, while the weapons themselves still looked explicitly like real firearms. Particularly unfortunate is that some of the scenes which were censored were directly based on the games, such as the policemen shooting Chaos (ineffectively) and Maria being shot by a soldier. And even more unfortunate is that they were inconsistent - Gerald is still executed in the dub, and you still hear the gunshot... but not the command to shoot.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture:
    • The Games:
      • Several games take place in a nation called "United Federation", which is America in all but name, complete with their president living in a White House-like building.
      • Sonic Unleashed doesn't even try to hide it. With the exception of Eggmanland, all of the levels are based off of various real-world locales:
      • Apotos = Mykonos, Greece
      • Mazuri = Mali (in Africa)
      • Spagonia = Western Europe (mainly Italy)
      • Holoska = The Arctic
      • Chun-Nan = China
      • Shamar = The Middle East (mainly the United Arab Emirates)
      • Empire City = New York City (mostly taken from Brooklyn and Manhattan)
      • Adabat = Southeast Asia (mainly Thailand and the Philippines)
      • And even Eggmanland could be considered as the bizarro world version of Disneyland/Disney World.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog's planet Mobius has long had stand-in cultures for Asia and Australia... but this was finally justified by the revelation that Mobius is actually Earth of the far, far future.
  • Fastest Thing Alive:
    • Most instruction booklets and official bios for the games, refer to Sonic as some variantion of "world's fastest hedgehog." Jet also mentions Sonic's reputation for being "the fastest thing alive" in Sonic Riders, and Sonic says so himself in the 3DS version of Sonic Generations. Shadow and Metal Sonic are his only real rivals in terms of speed, both of whom rely on technology rather than natural running speed (hover shoes in the former's case and being entirely mechanical in the latter's) and can only move faster than him in short bursts.
    • The trope name comes from the Bragging Theme Tune for Sonic Sat AM.
    "Soonnnicc! He can really move. Sonnniccc! He's got an attitude. Soonnicc! 'He's the fastest thing alive!"
  • Fear of Thunder:
    • Tails from the games is afraid of lightning. Though the games seem to have removed this character trait, as his element power in Sonic Heroes is Thunder Shoot. It reappears in Sonic Mania Plus when transitioning from Metallic Madness to Titanic Monarch, as the lightning that surrounds the big robot causes Tails to jump if he's present.
    • In Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie, Tails is shown freaking out, clinging to Sonic when lightning strikes nearby.
    • Tails in Sonic Boom displays a comical fear of lightning storms, often jumping into Sonic's arms and shaking when one occurs.
  • Fictional Video Game:
    Sonic: Look what I found at the flea market!
    Knuckles: Dude, is that Tomatopotamus 2?
    Tails: That's the best one in the entire series! Tomatopotamus never worked in 3D.
    Knuckles: Game companies always ruin their beloved franchises.
    Sonic: And they never should have changed the color of Tomatopotamus' legs.
  • Flashy Protagonists, Bland Extras:
    • The games star a bunch of Funny Animals while the random NPC characters are all humans. Humans can be both important and unimportant characters, however if an anthropomorphic animal pops up they're always an important character. It wasn't until Sonic Forces that Funny Animals outside of the main characters (excluding the background echidnas in Sonic Adventure) became a thing.
    • Canon Foreigner characters in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog are usually more humanoid than the Funny Animal SegaSonic characters. Even those that aren't still don't quite look on par with the Sonic Team-designed characters (for example, Furry Female Manes are common with Archie's original but extremely rare in game canon).. this was fixed when the 2013 Continuity Reboot allowed for redesigns of all non-game characters.
    • Sonic the Comic doesn't even try to blend in its cartoony SegaSonic characters with the Canon Foreigner cast. Though the Freedom Fighters such as Tekno and Shortfuse blend in well enough alongside Sonic and Amy, others are much taller and more humanoid than the Sega-created characters.
  • Floating Continent:
    • The games have several such examples of this trope throughout the years:
  • The second half of Windy Hill from Sonic Adventure takes place on bridges and landmasses floating high in the sky.
  • In Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie, seemingly all of society lives on floating islands. Heavy cloud cover makes the otherwise perfectly habitable regular ground more or less abandoned (and earns it the name "The Land of Darkness" to boot). The only ones who dwell there are Robotnik, who implicitly doesn't care that it's so gloomy so long as he has the place to himself, and his robots, who obviously don't care that it's so dark. Also, there's no threat of these continents falling to the ground — instead, the threat is that they'll be flung out into space, as the continents all join at massive glaciers that functionally anchor them to the planet's surface. If it were to be destroyed, the combination of the planet's rotation and their own anti-gravity would cause them to hurtle out of orbit, being torn apart in the process.
  • Foe Romance Subtext:
    • The games have Knuckles and Rouge, particularly in Sonic Adventure 2. The two spend the better part of the game at each other's throats, mainly because they both want to restore the Master Emerald after it as broken earlier, albeit for different reasons, noble and selfish respectively. However, in their final confrontation when Rouge was in trouble, Knuckles saved her and the two gazed in each other's eyes while holding hands for a good few seconds before Rouge pulled away in disgust. Knuckles calls her out on her ungrateful attitude, but then Rouge teases that he just wanted to hold her hand. Rouge decides to just give up her pieces and leaves it at that, Knuckles apologizes if he hurt her in their previous fight and Rouge gives a small smile in his direction before departing.
    • In one episode of Sonic X, during a fighting tournament, Rouge fights Tails and beats him... by kissing him. A few episodes earlier, she essentially flirts with Knuckles. The latter relationship is canon.
  • Forgot About His Powers:
    • The Games:
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • The chronic and widespread amnesia over the Iron Queen's Magitek is one of the main causes of The Iron Dominion Saga; the Freedom Fighters are constantly clueless to the fact that their enemy can control machines with her mind, and wind up being shocked each time one of their cyborg or mechanical allies gets turned against them by her. They also keep forgetting that they have a counteragent to her spell right in their own backyard. And in case you're wondering, there's actually a time in the saga where the Iron Queen herself forgets that she has this power, and has to be reminded that the Freedom Fighters are holed up in a Grey Goo city that she can manipulate... after she successfully infiltrated and messed it up with her powers.
      • Tails had an uncle who was skilled enough in magic to, among other things, teleport and activate his Super Mode. Unless there's an unexplained limitation on that second spell, Dr. Eggman really shouldn't have been a threat for so long.
  • For the Evulz:
  • Four-Fingered Hands:
    • The Games:
      • While most characters in the games have five fingers per hand, the character Fang the Sniper (A.K.A. Nack the Weasel) has only four fingers per hand. Seemingly a reference to the fact that jerboas have four toes, as he's a wolf/jerboa hybrid (despite what his Western name claims).
      • The animal characters in the games have no toes at all. The rare time they're seen without their shoes, they just have oval-ish lumps with no features on them whatsoever. However, if All-Stars Racing Transformed is anything to go by, driving through electricity or being hit with an electric All-Star move shows that the Sonic characters have toe bones.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog series have both the four-fingered and five-fingered hands. The SEGA-based heroes and the normal humans have five fingers while those from the Saturday morning Sonic Sat AM series or Original Generation characters have four fingers. The humans with four fingers were given the name "Overlanders", while five-fingered humans are still referred to as "humans". This was lampshaded in the original miniseries where a fish robot attacks a drawing of Sonic on a rock, then mumbles about how he should have realized it was fake because it had four fingers.
    • In Sonic Underground, Sonic and his siblings are drawn with five fingers, but Robotnik has only four. This is a result of the show using the game design for Sonic (unlike previous cartoons, which used more simplified designs), and basing Manic and Sonia on it. Robotnik, instead, uses his SatAM design, which had four fingers like all characters in that show.
  • Free-Range Children:
    • Most of the game characters are minors (Tails is 8, Amy is 12, Sonic is 15, etc.), and very few of them have legal guardians. Cream (6) lives with her mother Vanilla, Charmy and Espio have Vector, and Blaze is a princess and is stated to have a living family, though they are unseen. In some cases, an explanation is given; Tails is an orphan and was the only inhabitant of a very small island before meeting Sonic, and Knuckles is the last of his species. The rest are unexplained.
    • In Sonic X, Cream the Rabbit is allowed by her mother to accompany her friends on quests to save the universe, despite being only 6. She has Cheese with her, but still... Sonic and the others aren't much better, being all under 17 and Tails being as young as 8, but it's unknown where their parents even are.
  • Freeze Ray:
  • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog episode "Baby-Sitter Jitters" features Robotnik's "Reversible Melt-O/Freeze-O Ray", pairing this trope with its inverse. However, the two modes aren't used in tandem to any significant effect: early on, Robotnik is hit by the "Freeze-O" mode and trapped in a block of ice, while in the climax the "Melt-O" mode makes a hole in a thick metal door that's trapping Sonic and Tails.
  • The Friends Who Never Hang:
    • The Games:
      • Tails and Cream barely ever communicate with each other. It's rather odd considering Sonic and Knuckles interact with their female counterparts quite often.
      • Ever since Sonic Heroes, more or less every character has been filed into a niche "team" that rarely interacts with the rest of the cast outside of their teams aside from Sonic himself, bordering on being an entire roster of SatelliteCharacters. Typically they're divided into "Team Sonic",note  "Team Dark",note  "Team Rose",note  "Team Chaotix", note  and the duo of Blaze the Cat and Silver, with Cream occasionally grouped with them due to her close relationship with Blaze. Particularly egregious with Team Chaotix, since they barely even interacted with the rest of the cast before suddenly being close enough to be invited to Sonic's Birthday party, only to spend the entire party standing by themselves.

        In fact, even within the teams themselves this happens. Knuckles and Tails rarely interact nowadays unless it's plot mandated they do, Cream has more or less never spoken a word to Silver despite how close she is to Blaze, All of Team Rose rarely has anything to do with Big unless they need a third wheel, etc. Really, they're all basically just there to talk to Sonic and no one else.
    • Sonic Sat AM has a case affecting the Spotlight-Stealing Squad in that Sonic rarely interacted with Bunnie, while Sally replaced Rotor as his confidant and foil, making them more this. As such the two ended up Demoted to Extra in Season Two.
  • The Full Name Adventures:
  • Funny Animal Anatomy:
    • The games have some very prominent examples. While characters like Tails and Rouge the Bat can at least be identified as to which species they are, most other characters look nothing like their species. You probably wouldn't guess Sonic was a hedgehog unless you'd been told so.
    • The Mobian aquatic creatures, particularly the fish, in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog have legs and humanoid bodies, to make them more anthropomorphic.
  • Furry Female Mane:
    • The Games:
      • Most of the females avert this. For example, Amy (a hedgehog) styles her quills into a bob while Rouge (a bat) doesn't even have fluff on her head.
      • Blaze the Cat has purple hair in a ponytail.
      • Cream's mother Vanilla is distinguished from her by having a bit of hair.
      • Honey the Cat of Sonic the Fighters is just Honey from Fighting Vipers but as a Funny Animal cat. She stands out against the canon Sonic characters by having yellow fur against a black mop of hair.
    • Played straight and averted in Sonic Sat AM, Sally and Lupe have a mane of hair, while Bunnie only has a tuft of fur on her forehead. Most male characters have just fur, though Antoine has a blond cut and some elderly characters such as Uncle Chuck and King Acorn have mustaches.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog plays this straight with many of its Canon Foreigner female characters (and often males too). In comparison, SegaSonic canon characters tend to avert this. Bunnie is one example where she originally averted this trope and had a Tuft of Head Fur but was later given long hair.
    • Sonic the Comic averts this with much of the cast, but it also plays this trope straight:
      • Morain is a fox kit like Tails but has longer bangs and a ponytail.
      • Tekno combines this with Non-Mammalian Hair. She is a canary with short hair.
  • Furry Reminder:
    • The Games:
      • Sonic can only walk across the bottom of any body of water in most of the games because hedgehogs are supposedly not good swimmers. (Though in reality, they don't seem to be worse off than most other land mammals.) Also, Sonic, along with some of his friends, curls up into a ball, which is what hedgehogs do in real life for defense (although they do not roll in balls or jump onto their enemies while curled up).
      • Knuckles the Echidna can dig, which is what echidnas can do. However, the hedgehogs, foxes, and rabbits, which are also burrowing animals, cannot dig.
      • The first time Rouge the Bat meets Shadow and Eggman in Sonic Adventure 2, she is seen hanging upside down from the ceiling, not unlike an actual bat.
      • The characters sometimes move their ears like actual animals. For example, at the start of Adventure 2 (but not the Gamecube port) Sonic's ear twitches when he hears Shadow.
      • In Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games, while most of the Sonic the Hedgehog characters have human-like swimming styles (even Tails' doggy paddle is a Continuity Nod to the Genesis games), Vector the Crocodile has a unique swimming style, which is functionally identical to the way real crocodiles swim.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • Big the Cat chased a ball of yarn.
      • It's been shown that echidnas hatch from eggs.
    • In one episode of Sonic X, it is mentioned that bats like Rouge have sonar that can sense things in the dark.
    • When Rouge video-chats in Team Sonic Racing Overdrive, her bat fangs are prominent. They're gone in the next shot. Rouge has bat fangs in the games as well, but they've been toned down since Sonic Adventure 2.
    • Sticks offends a walrus in Sonic Boom by telling her she has enough blubber for the winter.
  • Fusion Dance:
    • This is how each of the power-ups work in Sonic Colors — Sonic merges with the Wisp to gain its powers. They reappeared in Sonic Lost World, filling the same purpose as they did in Colors. However, in Sonic Forces, they are instead being fused with a gadget called a Wispon.
    • In Sonic Universe's "30 Years Later" storyline, we find that Tikal and Chaos have fused into one Composite, Tikhaos. It seems to have some semblance of Tikal's personality, but Chaos' hunger for chaos energy.
  • Gadgeteer Genius:
  • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog has Sir Charles Hedgehog, better known as Sonic's Uncle Chuck. He was the mechanical genius who invented the Roboticizer as a medical device. Too bad a certain rotund Overlander decided to sabotage it to Take Over the World...
  • Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke:
    • Shadow the Hedgehog from the games, the Ultimate Life Form. Envisioned as a great defender of the world, and this is indeed what he ultimately becomes in spite of a setback after his creator went mad with grief over Maria's death, then amnesia, and then discovering that one of the genetic templates for his creation was an Eldritch Abomination. Shadow has gone on to destroy or take part in destroying a number of Eldritch Abominations and armies of Mecha-Mooks.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • Knuckles the Echidna's origin has a combination of this and I Love Nuclear Power; his father, Locke, performed "biological enhancements" on himself, noting that Knuckles' was made up of more than just the genetic material of his parents. Then Locke irradiated his son's egg with Chaos Energy from the Master Emerald.
      • It ends up the entire planet of Funny Animals is the result of the alien species called the Xorda dropping a "gene bomb" on the planet, mutating it severely. Yes, the origin story for the heroes homeworld is that Earth was bombarded by genetic engineering weapons that caused fault lines to shift, seas to drain, and left the planet uninhabitable in many places for many years. Which is what you'd expect to happen if a planet got hit by several thousand multi-megaton nuclear weapons.
  • Genius Bruiser:
    • The Games:
      • Vector the Crocodile is classified as a power character, and is shown to be a brilliant detective. He unfortunately sometimes doubles as a total idiot - but then most of Team Chaotix does that. Nowhere is this shown better than at the end of Sonic Heroes where he lays out to Eggman that he knew EXACTLY who he was all along, and was playing along with his game because he knew that whomever locked Eggman up would be the worse of two evils after effortlessly tearing a thick metal door off the wall with his bare fists.
      • Dr. Eggman, though he rarely ever uses his raw strength. He is orders of magnitude above everyone else in knowledge of robotics and machinery, but when push comes to shove, he can not only run as quickly as Sonic can (albeit for short periods of time), but the Sonic Riders games show he can punch aside metal doors, cars, stone statues, and other large heavy objects like they're nothing and with no assistance. He just prefers to let his machines do the destruction.
      • When he's not being written as rock stupid Knuckles has, at various points, demonstrated a philosophical streak, a fair bit of historical knowledge, an ability to read ancient runes, and some tactical ability. All in addition to his prodigious strength.
  • Vector who is balanced in both brawn and brains, His physical strength is significant and he tends to fight using his tail and teeth. He also possesses keen computation and detective skills.
  • Gentle Giant:
    • The Games:
      • Bark the Polar Bear is the largest character in Sonic the Fighters, and one of the strongest. His official bio describes him as "blunt and quiet, but gentle, shy and with a kind heart".
      • Big the Cat is one of the biggest and strongest characters in the Sonic franchise, and yet he is one of the most easy-going, preferring to spend most of his time fishing with Froggy, his pet frog. He is also good friends with Amy and Cream in Sonic Heroes, serving as the Power member of Team Rose.
  • Knuckles in Sonic Boom. He's big, tall, and muscular, possesses incredible strength, loves punching things...but is also probably one of the friendliest characters on the show. Despite his tough appearance, he has a soft spot for nature, and is incredibly loyal to his friends.
  • Gilligan Cut:
    • Sonic Sat AM has this (part of a plan to steal Robotnik's materials):
      Sonic: A hedgehog never gives up.
      (cuts to middle of Robotropolis)
      Sonic: I give up!
    • Sonic Boom:
      • In episode 4:
        Amy: You should get a pet. It would help you learn to love animals. Don't you think, Sonic?
        Sonic: Yes, absolutely.
        Amy: Then you can take Sticks pet-shopping right now.
        Sonic: No, absolutely not.
        (cut to Sonic taking Sticks pet-shopping)
  • In Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, Tails' belief that girls have cooties is very pronounced.
  • Sonic X is notable for zig-zagging this trope. Tails gets defeated in a match when Rouge kisses him on the cheek, grossing him out and playing this trope straight. This is subverted when he gets a love interest in a plant girl named Cosmo in the third season.
  • Girls with Moustaches:
    • In Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, Dr. Robotnik's mother has a moustache similar to Robotnik's own.
    • In the Sonic Boom episode, "Eggheads", when Sonic's friends eat the personality-changing cookies with Dr. Eggman's DNA, they all gain Eggman's trademark mustache. This includes the female characters, Amy and Sticks.
  • Girly Bruiser:
    • Amy Rose from the games is an adorable pink hedgehog in a cute red dress who carries a hammer that makes cute little tapping noises when it hits, creating bubbles of heart-shaped magic in some incarnations. Said hammer, when wielded by Amy, has also reduced gigantic, deadly battle robots to scrap metal.
  • The Glomp:
    • In the games, Sonic gets glomped by Amy. Or at least he would be if Amy wasn't color blind. She can't seem to tell the difference between blue Sonic, black-and-red Shadow, and white-colored Silver. She successfully glomps him in Sonic Unleashed... while he's in Werehog form. The one time she actually gets him, she thinks she has the wrong guy almost immediately afterward.
    • In Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie, Tails' default reaction to lightning involves glomping onto Sonic in his panic.
  • Go-Karting with Bowser:
    • The Games:
      • You can go karting with Eggman in Sonic Drift, and karting (more so airboarding) with Shadow in Sonic Riders
      • In Sonic Drift 2, you can not only kart with Eggman, but you can also choose Knuckles, Metal Sonic, and even Fang/Nack!
      • And in Sonic R it's not just Robotnik but four of his creations: Metal Sonic, Metal Knuckles, Tails Doll, and Egg Robo. The manual makes an attempt to say its a secret plot to destroy Sonic, but ingame all play fairly, and you can't destroy other racers.
      • This has happened with Shadow in the games a few times too - though Shadow is more of The Rival than a villain, he and Sonic tend to be enemies most of the time (or at least, he really doesn't like Sonic). However, he teams up with Sonic or Tails in various levels in Shadow the Hedgehog, races with the others in the various spin-off racing games, and appears at Sonic's birthday party in the ending to Sonic Generations. He also shows up before the Final Boss to give both Sonics some words of motivation, and gives them advice during the actual battle along with the other characters.
      • In the two-player mode of Sonic Adventure 2, Sonic can have a friendly race with Shadow and Metal Sonic. He can also actually go go-karting with Shadow (but not with Metal Sonic, since he's not selectable in that mode). Even more, Amy can also race against Metal Sonic, despite the fact she should have every reason to hate him given that he's the one who kidnapped her back in Sonic the Hedgehog CD.
      • In Sonic & Sega All Stars Racing, of course, Sonic is seeing karting with Eggman and Shadow. Shadow's profile actually reminds you of his Character Development from revenge-driven maniac to The Lancer.
      • Sega themselves lampshaded this during the second annual Sonic Twitter takeover (itself an example of this trope, with Sonic and Eggman answering fan-tweeted questions together). Sega asked them "Do you guys hang out a lot or are you actually frenemies?" Eggman's response is to loudly and emphatically declare "We're ''enemies''! MORTAL enemies!", then offer to get Sonic a leftover chili dog from the fridge.
      • The third Sonic Twitter had Shadow answering questions along with Sonic and Eggman.
    • In an early issue of Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, Snively and some Swatbots interrupt a hockey game the Mobians are playing simply because they wanted to play themselves. Robotnik finds out and ups the stakes on the game, but Snively really wanted to play for fun.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie: Sonic's girlfriend Sara plays video games with Dr. Eggman, her kidnapper.
    • Sonic X:
      • Doctor Eggman actually gives Sonic shelter after finding him knocked out from a recent battle (while he was jogging down the beach no less) He does, however, use the opportunity to plant a listening device on Sonic.
      • In one episode there's a scene where Sonic finds Eggman sitting on a cliff overlooking Station Square, and the two have a remarkably civil conversation before going their separate ways.
    • In the Sonic Boom episode "Fuzzy Puppy Buddies", Amy and Eggman discover a shared love of a cutesy board game called Fuzzy Puppies, and secretly meet up to play the game when Sonic and his friends aren't thwarting Eggman's evil schemes.
  • Golden Super Mode:
  • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog features a four-episode story arc concerning the quest for the Chaos Emeralds. In each episode, Dr. Robotnik uses his new time machine to travel back in history in order to acquire one of the four emeralds, invariably pursued by Sonic and Tails.
  • Green Aesop:
    • The Games:
      • This is what the series used to revolve around, with Sonic functioning as a nomadic Nature Hero of sorts. The basic plot of the original games involves Sonic rescuing other animals from Robotnik's machines, levels such as Chemical Plant Zone, Scrap Brain Zone, and Oil Ocean Zone are over-industrialized hellholes. Unlike most examples of the latter trope, he is quick to utilize technology to fulfil any tasks he needs to do, but he still seems to carry disdain for Eggman's wanton environmental destruction.
      • This is taken to its apex in Sonic CD, where Sonic has the ability to prevent Robotnik from turning the future into a post-apocalyptic, mechanized hell by defeating certain robots in the past.

        It also showed that, utilized properly, technology could benefit the environment via the Good Futures, which showed that as technology became more advanced, rather than compete with nature, the two forces combined in order to make life on Earth more peaceful. Since there's no pollution (visible pollution at least), it's safe to say that the combination of technology and nature has worked to fix any destruction done to Earth's ecosystems in the past by pollution, and is now working to prevent that damage from ever happening again.
  • The general aesthetics of the games, especially the earliest ones (and levels of later games that draw inspiration from them) plays with this trope, as the "nature" Sonic is protecting appears to already be pretty artificial already (such as being made up of geometric shapes or the ground having that checkerboard pattern on them).
  • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog had a few of these in its "Sonic Sez" segments. The one in "Momma Robotnik's Birthday" involves Sonic explain why trees are good for the environment and advise the viewers to plant some if they live in the city. The ones in "Sonic Gets Thrashed" and "Honey, I Shrunk the Hedgehog" involve Sonic explain to the viewers how trash can add up based on their actions, and encourage them to recycle.
  • Sonic Sat AM pointed out that Robotnik was evil because he misused technology (some of which he stole and perverted — the Roboticizer was originally designed to allow elderly and terminally ill people to live longer) — not because technology is inherently bad.
  • Evolved over the course of Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog. Early on, most characters wore partial clothing ranging from nearly fully dressed (Antoine only lacks pants) to nothing but shoes (Sonic, of course). Over time, more characters were added and often featured with more complete outfits. Following the 2013 continuity reboot, many characters are starting to shift towards the current Sega look with females donning full sets of clothing and males with gloves and shoes with a few extra pieces to set them apart.
  • In Sonic Unleashed, Exposition Fairy Chip is able to produce endless amounts of chocolate, each bar bigger than he is, out of thin air. Furthermore, he offers one to everyone he meets.
  • Lampshaded in Sonic Generations when Classic Tails asks where Classic Sonic puts all the rings, to which Modern Tails cannot answer, having not asked himself.
  • Which is odd, since Tails is a huge user of this trope himself, even more than Sonic. At times, he'll pull a toolbox from nowhere (large enough for him to use as a chair), a remote-controlled robot the size of his head, and, most frequently, a never-ending supply of bombs (whether cartoony or shaped like rings).
  • Amy Rose in Sonic X has hammerspace for her Pico Pico hammer. She procures it visibly after Sonic fails to return to their world with her. After launching a Hammer into the side of Eggman's airship's hull (he woke her up with a loudspeaker), he points out that she is unarmed. Close-up shot to the hand beside her thigh, and another Hammer appears in a puff of smoke. This happens six or seven more times, as each Hammer is launched into the airship's hull.
  • In Sonic Boom, Amy is able to pull out her trademark hammer whenever she wants, despite the fact that it's almost as big as she is.
  • #HashtagForLaughs: Since 2015 and under the influence of a new PR team, the social accounts started posting more silly and self-aware posts, as well as being more involved with their fans. On their Tumblr account, the posts are usually followed by funny tags telling how their office life is, asking the followers to send drawings of their coworker "Angry Sandra", or teasing the development of Big's Big Fishing Adventure 3.
  • Helping Granny Cross the Street:
    • Played with in the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog episode, "Pseudo Sonic". The titular robot helps an Old Lady cross the street deliberately at the wrong time so that she will get run over by a bus. This later comes to bite the real Sonic on the butt as the Old Lady thinks he had her run over and tries to alert the Police to arrest him.
    • In the Sonic Boom episode, "Chain Letter", an attempt to get the Old Monkey to be his third friend on FriendSpace, Eggman helps him cross the street. When Eggman asks the Old Monkey to send him a friend request on FriendSpace, the Old Monkey gets confused and Eggman leaves him in the middle of the road, where he gets run over by Dave's car.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity:
  • In Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, following her brainwashing by the Iron Queen, NICOLE becomes a subject of fear to much of New Mobotropolis, particularly Idol Singer Mina Mongoose, who begins a series of musical protests against her. And things are made even worse when Ixis Naugus starts using Mina's music as a conduit for his magic, amplifying the public's distrust of NICOLE into paranoia and hate, in a bid to make himself a Villain with Good Publicity by promising to dispose of NICOLE for them. And it works, leading to a Heroic BSoD on NICOLE's part and a My God, What Have I Done? on Mina's part.
  • In Sonic X, shortly after arriving on Earth, Sonic and his friends get in trouble with local police and spend the early part of Season 1 hiding out at Chris' house when not foiling Eggman's latest Evil Plan. A few heroic exploits soon turn things around, and they become very popular.
  • Hollywood Personality Disorders:
    • Histrionic Personality Disorder: Sonic the Hedgehog from the games. It has been debated as to whether he fights evil for the rush, or for the attention. While this doesn't mean he wouldn't fight it anyway, he has been shown to bask in the attention and recognition he gets from being the hero.
    • Narcissistic Personality Disorder: Scourge the Hedgehog from Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog does not merely have Sonic's raging ego and self-confidence, but cranks it Up to Eleven with his love of power and respect (or fear; either are fine), and a solid belief that the world owes him a favour just for gracing it with his existence. Also unlike Sonic, who often thinks of himself as superior to others but will always put them first, Scourge will always put himself first, with almost zero consideration for the feelings or safety of other people.
  • Honorary True Companion:
  • While his exact location and involvement with the larger conflict has varied throughout the series' run, this was how Knuckles the Echidna started out in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog. While helping them out when they were in his area, joining up with them when they really needed him and even going on an extended quest to find a legendary sword connected to the royal family, Knuckles could never permanently join the Freedom Fighters because he had to take care of the Floating Island.
  • Horrible Judge of Character:
    • Knuckles the Echidna from the games is so gullible that it's become a joke in the series itself. He's such a bad judge of character that, even though he's been fully aware for years that Dr. Eggman doesn't say anything that won't get him closer to the Chaos Emeralds and world domination, he still takes everything the corpulent madman says at face value, and follows up on things Eggman says better than things that people he trusts with his own life tell him. The other characters have been riding him about it for years; if he does something even subjectively stupid, the knee-jerk assumption is that he's been talking to Eggman again. Sonic The Hedgehog 3 was the only time Knuckles completely believed him since it was their first meeting. In Sonic Adventure Eggman only makes Knuckles confused and suspicious about Sonic's actions (and considering the Master Emerald was destroyed, Knuckles probably wasn't in the best frame of mind at the time). In Sonic Advance 2, Knuckles ends up being tricked somehow by Eggman into fighting Sonic with the Egg Saucer, which, after Sonic destroys it, Knuckles chased him covered in soot. The cutscene afterwards reveals that he was tricked by Eggman once again, with Knuckles being upset at this revelation, and Sonic deciding to leave him to sulk until Knuckles decides to get his act together.
    • This is pretty much King Max's defining trait in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog. He trusted the original Dr. Robotnik to the end and never suspected his true colors until it was too late. Issue 233 reveals him to have a history of this; Harvey Who explicitly warned him not to trust Warlord Kodos, not to let Ixis Naugus remain in the kingdom, not to exile Nate Morgan, and finally not to take the original Robotnik in, but Max ignored him every single time. There's a reason he's been given the title of Maximilian the Cursed.
    • In Sonic X, despite being sworn enemies with Eggman, Knuckles is always fully prepared to believe his latest lie about wanting to change his ways and help him out, and no matter how many times he realizes that Eggman lied to him, he'll always fall for it again. It's even lampshaded in the Season 2 episode "An Enemy in Need," where the others flat-out call him out on falling for Eggman's latest claim that he'll reform if they give him the Chaos Emerald; even then, Knuckles adamantly refuses to even consider the possibility that Eggman is lying until Decoe and Bocoe show up and Eggman himself lets it slip that Knuckles fell for it.
  • Hostile Show Takeover:
    • Meta example: Dr. Eggman once took over the Sonic the Hedgehog Twitter account. He then proceeded to jab at Kel Mitchell and Archie Comics. Tails eventually got the account back by hacking into Eggman's system, and the account is now back to normal. Well, as normal as it usually is.

      He tried it again during the franchise' 25th anniversary, only for Sonic himself to burst in and join him, turning it into a Q&A session.

      This has apparently become a yearly tradition, as they do it again in 2017 to promote the release of Sonic Forces, this time with Shadow joining them.

      They skipped out on doing it in 2018, but returned in 2019 to promote Team Sonic Racing, this time throwing Tails into the mix.
    • In a horrible case of Mood Whiplash in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, Antoine D'Coolette planned to take over as the main hero while Sonic was jailed. Why was he jailed? The events of "Mecha Madness", where he was turned into Mecha Sonic and unleashed on Knothole, everyone believing he actually went against Sally's edict that he wasn't supposed to do that.
    • In Sonic X, Eggman repeatedly expresses his desire to become the protagonist of the show throughout the first two seasons. In fact, due to story events and the ending theme changing, it looked like he almost succeeded at one point.
  • Hellish Pupils:
  • Super Sonic, the resident Omnicidal Maniac in Sonic the Comic had red spirals instead of pupils. In some stories they seemed to reflect his demeanour; when he was at the peak of his evil powers the spirals were large enough to fill his eyes, but when he was good they shrank noticably.
  • Human Cannon Ball:
    • The Games:
      • In Sonic the Hedgehog 2, one of the more fun ways of getting around Oil Ocean Zone is to shoot yourself out of the various cannons dotted throughout the level.
      • In the Carnival Night Zone in Sonic 3, circus cannons appear throughout both acts, and allow the player to launch themselves into the air, and one is used to enter the next zone after the boss battle.
      • Sonic Heroes:
        • The game features cannons where how it fires will depend on who the team leader is when you enter it.
        • During the Bullet Station Zone the player team will occasionally use a really big cannon, which is the size of an entire building.
    • In the opening credits of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, Coconuts attempts to shoot Grounder out of a cannon at Sonic. He tugs so hard on the detonator, that it thrusts Grounder into the direction of him and Scratch and explodes.
    • Sonic Boom:
  • In the episode, "Unlucky Knuckles" from the same series, in an attempt to shift the luck balance of the universe (the idea given to him by Sticks), Knuckles fires himself out of a cannon at the bottom of a deep pit.
  • In "Role Models", Knuckles launches Tails out of a cannon and Tails lands in a trash can. Before Knuckles can do the same with Amy, he is stopped by D.B. Platypus. When Sonic protests against D.B. calling him and his friends bad role models, he hits the cannon, launching Amy into a tree.
  • Humanity Ensues:
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • After the original Dr. Robotnik was Killed Off for Real in the 50th issue, the 75th issue reintroduced his Alternate Self from issue 22, a Robotnik from an Alternate Timeline who roboticisied himself to defeat Sonic. He transfers to a new body resembling Doctor Eggman from the main post-Aventures Sonic games, but it wasn't until issue 118 that his humanity was completely restored, bringing him 100% in-line with his video game depiction.
      • A variant happens, when Princess Sally's AI sidekick constructs herself a holographic mobian body after experiencing it first hand during a "Freaky Friday" Flip.
    • An issue of Sonic the Comic has an issue where Sonic is a human. As the issue goes, Sonic wakes up one day in a strange bedroom as a human. As he wanders around the house he meets a woman who says she's his mother and makes him believe that Mobius and Sonic the Hedgehog were All Just a Dream. As it turns out, though, it's just a trap by Robotnik. The comic also features Tails as a human.
  • Humanlike Animal Aging:
    • Sonic and his friends. Most of them, including Sonic himself, are stated to be teenagers between 14-16, while the younger ones such as Tails are between 6-8. Amy Rose is in the middle at 12. Their ages are a case of All There in the Manual, but they typically do behave the same as humans that age.
    • Sonic's origin as given in the American Sonic the Hedgehog Bible averts this. Sonic doesn't age like an actual hedgehog, but he doesn't age like a human either. It took only a year for him to turn into the equivalent of a teenager.
  • Humongous Mecha:
  • Hurricane of Puns:
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • In one comic (emphasis in original):
      Sonic: I don't want to go out on a limb, but I wood like to get to the root of Sally's problem! I'd be a sap if I wanted to leaf! As forest that's concerned, I'll try to cedar through this thing fir sure! If knot, I'll be pine-ing and weeping! I'd much rather take a bough! Oak-k?
      • Sonic is actually playing with this trope: sensing that the story was going to turn into a Hurricane of Tree Puns anyway, Sonic decided to stop the comic for a couple of panels just to get them all out of the way, so the reader wouldn't have to sit through any more of them.
  • Hyperspace Mallet:
    • In the games, Amy Rose's signature weapon is the Piko Piko Hammer, a mallet that shows up out of nowhere. There's not a single video game (besides Sonic CD) she shows up in either in which she doesn't have the hammer at all (since Sonic Adventure) or in which she keeps the hammer in a logical place.
    • Amy Rose in Sonic X has the ability to pull her Piko Piko Hammer out of nowhere. She has this ability in most depictions; however, this is the depiction which most frequently shows her using her hammer for comedic purposes instead of just using it in fights against her actual enemies. She can even use multiple hammers if one gets destroyed, and use them while in her spaceship in the third season. You can even watch the hammers materialize out of thin air on some occasions. It gets lampshaded.
    [Amy throws hammer at Eggman's airship]
    Eggman: We got your hammer up here, so you can't touch us!
    [Amy pulls out another hammer out of nowhere]
    Decoe/Bocoe: Ah!! Another one!
    Bokun: She's got more hammers than a hardware store!
  • I Am Not Weasel:
    • In Sonic and the Secret Rings, the Djinn Erazor repeatedly calls Sonic a "blue rat", even when he was sucked back inside of his lamp for the rest of eternity. And each time he did, Sonic repeatedly reminded him that he was a hedgehog, and not a rat. Sonic got the last word in that argument.
    • Dr. Qwark, of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, is constantly being mistaken for a duck, despite being human. "I'm not a duck!"
    • In Sonic the Hedgehog in the Fourth Dimension, an imaginary creature (long story) refers to Sonic and Tails to Sonic as "you and your ilk". Tails replies indignantly, "I'm a fox, not an ilk." The fault is Tails', though, as "ilk" is an infrequently used term used similar to "kind" used to describe similar cohorts. The creature was merely referring to Sonic and Tails as both being real animals.
    • Mechanical example at the beginning of the Sonic Boom episode, "Circus of Plunders". When Sonic and his friends battle Dr. Eggman's Octopus Bot, they constantly confuse it for different eight-legged creatures, much to his annoyance. It even gets to the point where he starts doing it!
      Eggman: "Next time, study your cephalopods before we do battle!"
  • Iconic Outfit:
    • The Games:
      • Sonic's sneakers and gloves.
      • Amy's post-Sonic Adventure red dress, headband and boots is her most iconic outfit.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • Antoine's blue soldier uniform with gold trim, red cuffs and two buttons paired with red boots. The only arc he doesn't wear it is on his honeymoon. The reboot ditches the uniform so he fits in better with the SEGA cast, but it's so well known that most fan artists continue to draw it.
      • Knuckle’s hat from the OVA was carried over to the Alternate Timeline story Mobius: 25 Years Later, where it's finally complemented with a form-fitting gray sleeveless jumpsuit (with his trademark white chest swoosh on the front), Crocodile Dundee-esque leather vest, cowboy belt, and brown leather boots. It's become an Iconic Outfit of its own. It appeared briefly in the regular timeline too, as a piece of clothing once worn by an ancestor of his. According to one letters page, the reason he never wears it is so it won't get damaged.
    • Amy in Sonic the Comic has an Unlimited Wardrobe however fanart most commonly has her wearing a sweatshirt with a heart on it and a green skirt. Amy actually owns many sweatshirts with different designs on them in canon.
    • Knuckles' wonderful, wonderful hat from Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie.
  • Identical Grandson:
    • Dr. Eggman from the games looks almost exactly like his grandfather, Gerald Robotnik. Eggman Nega, who claims to be Eggman's descendant from the future in Sonic Rivals also looks exactly like Eggman, except his mustache is gray and he wears newer clothes.
    • In an early, pre Cerebus Syndrome issue of Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic is sent back in time to prehistoric Mobius, where he meets prehistoric versions of himself and the Freedom Fighters.
    • In Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic and Robotnik's ancestors look and act very similar to their modern day counterparts.
    • In Sonic Underground, the hedgehogs find the tomb of an Ancient Egyptian ancestor of theirs who looks (and acts) just like Sonic.
  • Idiosyncratic Cover Art:
    • The Japanese Mega Drive versions of the the games all feature mostly white backgrounds with artwork of the main character(s), surrounded by various geometric shapes of basic colors (white, black, red, green, blue, and yellow). They also sometimes have English text (usually an inspirational quote and/or "The Most Famous Hedgehog In The World"). The JP boxarts for Mega CD's Sonic CD (as well as its PC release) and Sega Saturn's Compilation Re-release game Sonic Jam, as well as a few of the Sega Game Gear Sonic games, also use boxarts of this design nature. Somewhat subverted however with Sonic and Knuckles as that game's boxart goes for a more basic approach—it only features the "Sonic and Knuckles" insignia rather than character artwork, and makes use of only two colors (white and blue).
    • Some older Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog comics featured 3-part mini-arc comics fairly often; each mini-arc's cover could be placed side-by-side, forming a large piece of artwork relevant to the story within. This also applied to every single issue of its Knuckles The Echidna spin-off.
  • Ignorant Minion:
  • Da Bears from Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog were this in their first appearance when Scratch and Grounder tricked them into thinking that they were Sonic and Tails and that Sonic and Tails were Scratch and Grounder.
  • I'll Never Tell You What I'm Telling You!:
    • The Games:
      • Happens in Sonic Adventure 2 when Eggman finally has Sonic and Tails where he wants them, and just needs the real Chaos Emerald to complete his scheme. Sonic sees through it. Tails... not so much.
      Eggman: Did you really think you could trick me with that fake Emerald?
      Tails: So... how did you know it wasn't the real one?
      Sonic: Tails!
      Eggman: Because You Just Told Me, Fox Boy!
      • Deliberately invoked in Sonic Battle, where Eggman states, very loudly, "They'll never find me in Gimme Shelter!" However, Eggman was actually trying to trick Knuckles and Emerl to "follow" him to Gimme Shelter.
  • In Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, Robotnik captured Tails and used him as a bargaining chip to convince Sonic to deliberately lose a race, which will have every member of a sheep race put into slavery. It works until Sonic demands Grounder (his opponent) to reveal where Tails is. Grounder responds, "You'll never find him under the arena."
  • I Have Many Names:
    • The main antagonist of the games is either "Dr. Eggman" or "Dr. Robotnik". Outside of Japan, it's both as of Sonic Adventure games. Said game established that Ivo Robotnik is his true name, while Eggman is an alias. Sonic Adventure 2 also hinted (but didn't outright confirm) that this is true in Japan as well, by giving his grandfather the name Gerald Robotnik.
    • In Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, Robotnik is known as nearly every name he's been known by in all other media except for "Ovi"; There's Warlord Julian Kintobor of the House of Ivo, Dr. Ivo Robotnik, plus his replacement being known as Robot-Robotnik, Robotnik Mach Two and Dr. Eggman... lampshaded in several post-200 issues (after his Villainous Breakdown) when he introduces himself as "Warlord-Doctor Julian Ivo Eggman-Robo-Kintobor Mach Two" and later muses on how he gained each of his names, which causes him to "remember" who he is and regain his memory.
    • Sonic X: In the Japanese dub, Chris’s Uncle Sam Speed had a different name every time he appeared.
  • Improbable Age:
    • Barring Robotnik, an old man, and Shadow, who was in stasis for a few decades, the characters in the games are almost all in their mid-to-late teens, and a few are even younger. In fact, assume they're around 15 if you don't see them here: Charmy and Cream (6), Marine (7), Tails (8), Amy (12), Sonic (15), Knuckles (16), Rouge and Big (18), Vector (20), and Vanilla (unknown, mother of Cream). And almost every last one of these guys has contributed to saving the world at least twice, with the exception of Marine, who only showed up in Sonic Rush Adventure, and Vanilla, who doesn't really do much. Especially Tails, who has been absent from a grand total of two games since his first appearance.
    • It's something of a stretch for the audience to believe that the now eighteen years old Christopher Thorndyke in Sonic X constructed a fully functioning portal that allowed him to transfer between worlds, gained his pilot's licence and became a black belt in Karate in six years between the end of one series and the beginning of the next. They're all possible, but accomplishing all of them in the same time span (when he was previously little more than an annoying twelve year old) is somewhat more incredible.
  • In Medias Res:
  • Unlike most previous games with a story, Sonic Colors doesn't have a proper opening cutscene; the game throws you into the first two acts of the game, and a cutscene afterwards tells you how Sonic and Tails got to Eggman's amusement park. Heck, this even extends to the gameplay as well, since you don't get to give your file a name and profile until after you complete the first two levels.
  • Sonic Boom Rise of Lyric starts off with Sonic being encircled by Lyric's robots and seemingly dying as they open fire - before cutting to yesterday. It then does this a second time by immediately throwing Sonic and friends into a chase for Eggman as the first gameplay segment. Notably, when the scene from the opening occurs proper, Sonic's perfectly fine afterwards and thus renders the drama from the start of the game as a pointless attention bait.
  • In-Series Nickname:
  • Inconsistent Dub:
    • The Games:
      • Fang the Sniper was called Nack the Weasel in English manual of Sonic Triple Trouble, but is referred to by his Japanese name in all other games.
      • Doctor Eggman/Robotnik's name switched between his Japanese and English names in Sonic Adventure. The translators tried to Hand Wave it as Eggman being his nickname and Robotnik his real name. Later games refer to him as Eggman almost exclusively.
      • Mecha Sonic from Sonic 3 & Knuckles was given many different and inconsistent dub names: Robotic Sonic, Evil Sonic, Q Zone, and even Metal Sonic (the name of a completely different robot Sonic who first appeared in Sonic CD). Finally, when he was featured as part of DLC in LEGO Dimensions, it was reverted to his Japanese name.
    • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • The Arabic dub originally mistook Tails for a squirrel and gave him a squirrel Dub Name Change. This was fixed later on.
      • In the Italian dub, Tails's real name Miles was translated as "Trottolino" in the flashback of his first meeting with Sonic in "Tails' New Home", but when it's mentioned again in "The Little Hedgehog" the original name is left.
  • Indy Escape:
    • The Games:
      • In the original game's Marble Zone, the player had to outrun some lava. In later games Rise to the Challenge was more common.
      • The original Sonic Adventure has not one, not two, but three of these; first in Sonic's version of Emerald Coast, where you have to run from an Orca smashing through the water bridge you're on; second is in Ice Cap, where Sonic and Tails have to stay ahead of an avalanche; finally, in Sonic's version of Lost World, you get a Sonic remake of the infamous boulder run.
      • The introduction level to Sonic Adventure 2 featured a sequence where Sonic had to flee from a crazed Big Rig in this manner. It's later revisited in one of the last levels, where Sonic has to Outrun the Fireball of the Eclipse Cannon's explosion.
      • Sonic Heroes:
        • The game has one too in Ocean Palace, with first one, then two, and then finally three rolling demonic-looking boulders of doom that chase you at the same time. You can just run towards the camera in Speed formation as fast as you can for several seconds and outrun it, though. But if you're not in Speed formation when you hit the spring that takes you there, and you don't hit the switch formation button before you even land...
        • Lost Jungle has a giant alligator that chases you to the end (you have to jump from swinging vines instead of run). And right before that, there's some of the black frogs that summon rain that kills plants. Said rain is killing the lily pads you're on. Thankfully, if you choose to play as Team Rose the level ends long before this.
      • Sonic and the Secret Rings has a variant involving escaping from a rampaging Triceratops herd.
      • Sonic Rush has some levels (specifically Leaf Storm and Night Carnival) where you run down a steep slope while a big rolling ball with Eggman's insignia on it chases you down those steep slopes.
      • Yet another one is done in Sonic Colors DS this time with a ferris wheel chasing you at the very start of Tropical Resort Act 2, though it only last a few seconds and theres a floor you can use your pounding move on to skip it if you're fast enough to break the floor and the ferris wheel will pass over you.
      • Sonic Generations has a few in both Classic and Modern Sonic's stages. One standout example is City Escape featuring said truck from Sonic Adventure 2 only this time it has SAWBLADES, and can drive through buildings like they were made of foam. But don't worry, as long as you're wall running you should be sa- HOLY CRAP IT'S DRIVING UP THE SIDE OF THE BUILDING!!
  • Informed Flaw:
    • The Games:
      • Various sources state that Sonic can be a jerk at times. This contrasts with his actual in-game portrayal. He is always portrayed as a caring, friendly, if somewhat snarky guy.
      • While more a case of Characterization Marches On, bios sometimes refer to Tails being childlike and hyperactive, despite his personality being even more mature and rational than Sonic's for the large part.
      • Eggman is no doubt fat, but it's often said to be from overeating, and we have only seen him actually eat once. Then again, he took down a twelve inch sandwich in two bites during that one instance, so this has some merit. He probably eats offscreen.
    • In Sonic X, Chris Thorndyke often complains about being rich meaning he doesn't have any real friends, and his parents never being home. While at first this seems almost true, over time, he is shown to have more human friends, more guardians, and his parents repeatedly manage to physically show up for special occasions. Being obscenely wealthy is certainly never played as a disadvantage.
  • Inspector Javert:
  • Silver from Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog has tendencies of this, being a time traveller. While trying to Set Right What Once Went Wrong by finding and stopping a traitor in the Freedom Fighters, he accuses and tries to attack Sonic, Rotor, and Antoine in that order, every time with very little to go on. He actually began to accuse Bunnie Rabbot of being the traitor based on the knowledge that she left without telling anyone, but Sonic, who was already on the verge of strangling him for accusing Antoine, snapped and effectively dissuaded him from that one, telling him to pack up and go home, because he's really not helping.
  • In "Blast to the Past", when Robotnik was referred to as Julian:
    Sir Charles: You are pure scum, Julian.
    Julian: Why, thank you.
  • Sonic Boom had a subversion where an insult backfire was quickly followed by an insult that hit the mark.
    Shadow: You have all the reflexes of a panther.
    Sonic: Is that in insult? I thought panthers were fast.
    Shadow: Maybe compared to you!
  • Intergenerational Friendship:
    • The Games:
      • Downplayed with Amy and Cream, as they are both children, but still present as Amy is twice Cream's age (Amy is twelve, and Cream is only six).
      • Sonic and Knuckles are also this for Tails. Him being 8 and Sonic and Knuckles being 15 and 16 respectively.
      • In Sonic Rush, the 14-year-old Blaze eventually befriends Cream as well. The sequel also introduces Marine, who's seven.
      • Team Chaotix consists of the 20-year-old Vector the Crocodile, the 16-year-old Espio the Chameleon, and the 6-year-old Charmy Bee.
    • In Sonic Sat AM it's most of the Freedom Fighters and Sir Charles "Uncle Chuck" Hedgehog. Of course, it's most because his nephew is the show's star. The same could also be said with Tails and the rest of the Freedom Fighters.
  • Interspecies Friendship:
    • The Games:
      • Pretty much all of Sonic's friendships fall into this. For example, there's his long-timed friendship between him, a blue hedgehog that can run at mach speeds, and Miles "Tails" Prower, a twin tailed fox... who can fly.
      • Amy's closest friend seems to be Cream. They're a hedgehog and a rabbit respectively.
      • Shadow the hedgehog was created on ARK to help a sick human girl named Maria Robotnik. The two became friends and Maria's death plays a huge role in Shadow's character.
    • A major theme in Sonic X is the human kid Chris' relationship with the Funny Animal hedgehog Sonic.
  • Iron Butt Monkey:
    • Tails in the 2D games. When you play the Sonic/Tails co-op, whether AI controlled or by a 2nd player, Tails is completely immortal and cannot die (well he can die, he just comes back right away). This of course leads to a huge potential for abuse...
    • Exploited in Sonic the Comic. The Sky pirates black cat Simpson is an iron buttmonkey, so when they need to get past some booby trapped stairs, Captain Plunder just kicks Simpson straight down the stairs to set them all off.
    • Sonic Boom subjects the entire cast to some form of physical abuse (yes, even the girls), but the most frequent victims are Eggman and Knuckles. To be fair, though, both of them tend to invite suffering upon themselves, such as when Knuckles went through a minefield of exploding baby ducks and picked up almost every single one...
  • I Surrender, Suckers:
    • The Games:
      • Eggman does this quite a few times, pleading that he'll reform provided Sonic doesn't beat him to a bloody pulp, just before activating a new machine.

        Most notable is that in Sonic Unleashed he does this at the end of the Cold Opening, right at the beginning of the game. Sonic doesn't really buy it but he's willing to stand around joking about it because he's currently high on God Mode as Super Sonic and theoretically nothing can hurt him. Sadly, that was an important requirement of the trap.
      • Sonic, himself, tries to pull this in Sonic Adventure 2, when Eggman takes Amy hostage and demands Sonic relinquishes his Chaos Emerald. Since Sonic had a fake Emerald created to sabotage the Eclipse Cannon, he acquiesces to Eggman's demands. Unfortunately, this turns out to be a trap: Eggman knew beforehand that the Emerald was a phony.
    • In one episode of Sonic Sat AM, Sonic pretends to give up so he'll be taken to Robotnik and the roboticizer. When Robotnik demands to know why he's there, Sonic hams it up, saying he can't take the stress anymore and his nerves are shot. Robotnik is unconvinced, and after a little banter, orders the SWATBots that brought Sonic in to put him in the roboticizer anyway. They grab Sonic, but he quickly trashes them and takes Robotnik for a spin in his own command chair as a diversion before getting to the true purpose of his mission: stealing parts from the roboticizer to fix the deroboticizer the Freedom Fighters have been working on.
  • It's Probably Nothing:
  • Played with in Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie. Sonic is relaxing on the beach and Tails goes out to the ocean to try his new machine, it goes out of control and he begins screaming for Sonic to help him. Sonic, who just wants to relax, dismisses it as "probably nothing". Tails continues screaming for Sonic, and he finally yells at him to shut up.
  • Jerk Ass To One:
  • Joker Immunity:
    • Doctor Robotnik/Eggman from the games hasn't even been in prison for his crimes (except for the one time he broke in deliberately), so he's always back to fight the heroes in the next instalment.

      Most games have him surviving otherwise inescapable explosions with little more than Amusing Injuries. Most egregiously, his Death Egg burst into flames and crash-landed on Angel island in the climax of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, but Sonic 3 reveals that he started work on his next scheme almost immediately after that.

      Shadow the Hedgehog seemingly subverts his immunity; in three possible endings, it's implied that Shadow broke his neck after defeating him. A Double Subversion when these endings were subject to Cutting Off the Branches.
    • Played with slightly in the Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog. In the "Endgame" arc, Julian Robotnik is indeed killed by his vengeful minion and nephew Snively; twenty or so issues played with the concept of other villains and problems following his defeat, only for a second Robotnik from an alternate timeline to enter and take over from his position. This Robotnik would later take the modern "Eggman" form seen in later games and continues being the Big Bad until the comics were cancelled in 2017.
  • The Kiddie Ride:
    • The Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car and Sonic Cosmo Fighter are two early kiddie rides made by Sega themselves back in the classic Sonic days. These rides also featured built-in monitors that played out a basic "game" while the ride is in use, blurring the line a bit between them and arcade games. (The Segasonic Popcorn Shop from the same era worked similarly, though it was a vending machine rather than a ride.). As per usual with many Japanese licensed rides, these rides were not officially exported, although grey-market imports can be found in several parts of the world. Ironically tho, some have reported that they've seen English versions of the ride being placed at high-tourist traffic locations in Japan, suggesting that Sega may have considered exporting them at one point.
    • There's also a modern Sonic ride based on Sonic's car in Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, again built by Sega themselves. Unlike the other Sonic attempts, this one is a straight up kiddie ride. And unlike the classic Sonic rides, this model is being exported worldwide. This ride features a pushbutton with lots of classic sounds.
  • Killed Off for Real:
    • E-102 Gamma in Sonic Adventure. After the battle with E-101 Beta, he self-terminates himself to free the last trapped bird.
    • In Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog the Doctor Robotnik of Sonic's universe was killed off in the 50th issue, and eventually replaced with one from a parallel world.
    • Sonic X:
      • The character Cosmo is killed in the last episode. By a shot fired by Tails, using a cannon for which Sonic and Shadow were the ammo, no less.
      • Emerl is also killed by Cream after she fails to bring him back to normal at the end of the "Sonic Battle" arc, since Gemerl doesn't exist in Sonic X he ends up as this.
  • Kill It with Fire:
    • In the very first level of Sonic 3, Dr. Robotnik tries to dispose of a pesky blue Hedgehog—responsible for thwarting his plans for world domination, twice—by napalming Angel Island and setting the entire jungle on fire. Needless to say, it doesn't work.
    • In the Sonic Boom episode "Two Good to be True", when alternate dimension Knuckles arrives in the normal dimension, Sticks gets startled and we get this:
      Sticks: Yaah! Kill it with fire!
      Tails: Calm down, it's just Knuckles!
      Sticks: Oh... kill Knuckles with fire!
  • Kill the Cutie:
  • Kudzu Plot:
    • The Games:
      • Shadow has picked up a ton of unresolved subplots over the games in which he's appeared. He got his own game, Shadow the Hedgehog, to try and resolve them, but it did so by just setting the proverbial machete to the kudzu.
      • Similarly, Sonic Lost World attempted to turn away from the Lighter and Softer bent of previous games, but also ran into this problem because it tried to introduce too many plot threads. Conflicts within the story (such as Tails being upset that Sonic trusts Eggman more than him) are never resolved and the game almost completely forgets to give some screen time to the new antagonists.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog had a ton of dangling plot threads that wouldn't be resolved for the longest time. Writer Ken Penders is often blamed for all this, but part of the blame also goes to Karl Bollers, who replaced Penders as head writer briefly and started a ton of story arcs that he would never get around to finishing. After Penders and Bollers left Archie Comics, new writer Ian Flynn spent almost a year just writing comics that tied up all the loose ends.
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    • The Games:
      • Omega in Shadow the Hedgehog once commented on the size of Eggman's ridiculously huge bases with:
        "ERROR! Unable to determine how a base this size has gone undetected. ERROR!"
      • Sonic Generations:
        • In the ending, Classic Tails asks Modern Tails where Sonic puts all of his Rings. Modern Tails says he always forgets asking.
        • Classic Tails shouts "Dr. Robotnik!" when Classic Eggman shows up. His response? "Nobody calls me that anymore!" note 
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • In the early limited-edition mini-series (that has been collected in Sonic Beginnings), Princess Sally has blonde hair in the first issue, and in the next, she's a brunette. When she says she has something to tell him, Sonic asks, "You mean why you changed from a blonde to a brunette?" This is also referenced in a later story where Sally goes on an angry rant and someone will be punished... because someone published a story that she dyed her hair from blonde to black.
      • A previously unpublished story had an ending where the Monster of the Week was shrunk down to a microscopic size, which Sonic finds he can't joke about. NICOLE then notes that, by her analysis, "Planet Mobius is about to get very complicated. New faces, complex relationships, entire worlds opening up!" This was referencing the Cerebus Syndrome the comic was undergoing at the time. Sonic, however, insists that Status Quo Is God. The story was finally published in Sonic Archives: Volume 5
      • When the comic began drifting away from being farcical to mirroring SatAM, it still had The Artifact of Boomer's name, who in the show was named Rotor. The editors pointed this out in the letters column in one issue and stated they would be changing it to match the show. The next several issues have various visual lampshades hung on this, such as the character wearing a "Hello, my name is Rotor" pin, and nailing a crude plank of wood with "Rotor" written on it over the "Boomer" part of his "Boomer's Shop" sign.
      • During the "Endangered Species" arc, the end of one part has Sonic fighting Lien-Da and the Dark Egg Legion in Albion. The beginning of the next has Sonic coming to from being knocked out, realizes no one is there outside of him, Tails and Amy and comments that an entire population can't disappear like that. note 
  • Last of His Kind:
    • The Games:
      • Knuckles is the last echidna, the species previously having powerful tribes long ago.
      • E-123 Omega is the last of Dr. Eggman's E-Series robots (which included Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta and Zeta from Sonic Adventure). He doesn't really care about that so much as the fact that Eggman apparently thought he was only good as a deactivated husk.
    • Thrash the Devil in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog is the last of the Mobian-type Tasmanian Devils as all others had been genetically modified into Mobini (more animal-like)-type Devil Dogs. Because this was done by echidnas centuries ago, he decides to return the favor by banishing every last echidna into another Zone save for one: Knuckles.
  • Lava Pit:
    • In the games, Marble, Hill Top, Lava Reef, and the Underground Zone all feature lots of lava (or magma) pits. Eggman is very creative about incorporating them into his gauntlets of traps.
  • Let's You and Him Fight:
    • The the games are a big fan of this trope:
      • In Knuckles' very first appearance, in Sonic the Hedgehog 3, he fights Sonic because he thought that Sonic meant to steal the Master Emerald. Then after he has been established as a character, Robotnik tricks him into fighting Sonic again in Sonic Adventure and again in Sonic Advance 2.
      • Sonic Heroes has tons of fights between the 4 teams (Team Sonic, Team Dark, Team Rose, and Team Chaotix). Despite being on the same side, they constantly fight each other for petty reasons and misunderstandings throughout the game. Noticeably, it is Team Dark who kept attacking people because their opponents might have saved the day before they could for their own reasons.
      • Sonic Rush subverted this a bit; Sonic and Blaze fight each other over who would fight Eggman (or Nega), even though they both know near the end that both are good guys (in fact, Blaze knows that Sonic is a good guy from the near start, but she felt that it was her responsibility to stop the Eggmans and refused to let anyone else intervene).
      • Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) has Silver, who arrived from the future and is told by Mephiles that Sonic is the Iblis Trigger (basically the cause of Silver's Bad Future). Mephiles is manipulating Silver to destroy Sonic - in order to make Elise cry, and ergo release Iblis and cause the bad future that Mephiles wants. Silver only wisens up when Shadow shows him the past, after spending most of the game pursuing Sonic.
      • The Sonic Rivals series is full of this. In the first game, 4 of the main characters - Sonic, Knuckles, Shadow, and Silver - fight each other because they want to be the first to confront Eggman who turns out to be Eggman Nega later on. In the second game, the same 4 characters fight each other again, this time with a companion on their side (Tails, Rouge, Metal Sonic, and Espio respectively). Even Team Dark teammates Shadow and Rouge fought each other.
      • At a meta level, this is the modus operandi of Sonic the Fighters and Sonic Battle. The former has a nonsensical plot that doesn't remotely make sense, the latter has the characters grab the Idiot Ball and fight each other to train up a MacGuffin robot.
      • Subverted in Sonic Colors. Eggman attempts to start a fight between Sonic and a brainwashed Tails, but his mind-control beam runs out of power before Tails could attack.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • One issue of the comic, "Rogue Rouge", dedicates itself to setting up a surprisingly brutal fight between Bunnie Rabbot and Rouge the Bat. It is a Cat Fight with a generous amount of Fanservice and lampshaded at the end with a page of sheepish "boy, that was silly" dialogue.
      • Super Sonic Special: Battle Royal was all about this trope. Basically, Mammoth Mogul attempted to turn the Freedom Fighters and the Chaotix against each other by using his powers to disguise his private enforcers, the Fearsome Four, into the other members of the two teams. Unfortunately for him, both sides are able to spot key flaws in the ruse, secretly compare notes, and fake a mutual destruction in order to draw Mogul out.
      • In Sonic the Hedgehog/Mega Man: Worlds Collide, the first act of the crossover is dedicated to setting up an epic brawl between Sonic and Mega Man. It gets lampshaded in Mega Man #24's "Short Circuits" segment, where both title characters are eager to work together before being informed by Orbot that they have to follow the "crossover by-laws" and fight each other first.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW):
    • Issue #6 sees a fight between Sonic and Shadow break out due to their disagreement over how to handle the amnesiac Eggman. It turns out that Rouge engineered the events leading to this fight, figuring a brawl with Sonic would clear Shadow's head enough that he wouldn't outright murder the Doc.
    • In Issue #18, Gemerl is defending Cream and Vanilla's hometown from the Zombots, and in the process identifies Sonic as a threat due to him being infected by the Metal Virus, attacking him and forcing him to leave. Cream calls out Gemerl for this, convincing him to let Sonic help and even making him apologize.
  • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • The comic became this when Ian Flynn took over on issue 160. Though there were still some darker arcs, the tone was generally lighter and more comical than the last 100 or so issues, which were mostly dark melodrama filled with tragic moments and little to no comic relief.
  • Limited Wardrobe:
  • Little Miss Badass:
  • Loads and Loads of Characters:
    • Good Lord, have the games evolved into this trope. A series that started with two characters has since grown to having around two dozen main characters (and that's not even counting the one-game wonders). This isn't including two distinct versions of Sonic, Tails, and Eggman. There became so many characters by around the time of Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) that future games in the series attempted to cut down on the number of characters, so that when Sonic Colors came around, the recurring cast was trimmed back to just Sonic, Tails, and Eggman (although there's a character unique to Colors called Yacker, and many other characters, including Big, Silver, Espio, and Blaze, make cameo appearances in side missions in the DS version). It's amazing when you consider that this game was released in 2010; this feat of a three-character Sonic game hadn't been achieved since Sonic the Hedgehog 2, which was released in 1992.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog's character roster, taking from both the games, the TV series and original characters, number in the triple digits. However, thanks to a heaping dose of Screwed by the Lawyers, most of the original characters have been jettisoned from the comic, bringing down the number significantly.

      It seems that the number is climbing back up in the wake of reboot. While all the characters from the games and most from the TV series stayed on, new original characters are being introduced consistently, leading to several new groups of freedom fighters and factions working under Eggman, and that's not even counting the sudden introduction of even more obscure game characters such as Honey the Cat and Wendy and the Witchcarters.
  • Locked into Strangeness:
    • Sega of America's origin for Sonic the Hedgehog involved this. It was adapted into Sonic the Hedgehog Promo Comic. Sonic was a prickly brown hedgehog who befriended Dr. Kintobor. An accident turned Sonic blue and turned the friendly doctor into Dr. Robotnik. This origin story is non-canon to the games as of Sonic Adventure.
    • Sonic the Comic:
      • Sonic's fur was brown and spiked differently until an accident turned him blue. This accident gave him super-speed.
      • According to one story, Amy was originally brown furred but an incident caused her fur to turn pink.
  • Loony Fan:
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) brings us SONICMAN! He's so convinced he's the real Sonic, he challenges the real Sonic to a foot race!
  • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog has Sonette, who, along with changing her name, has snuck into Sonic's room while he was sleeping and stolen merchandise from him. She also is frequently seen with a piece of Sonic's chewed gum in her mouth. note 
  • Sonic Boom: Mark from "The Biggest Fan" is more than a little obsessed with Sonic and friends, to the point he writes "spicy" SonAmy fan fiction and tries to hold an injured Sonic captive a la Misery.
  • Sonic Sat Am had the Great Forest, wherein in Knothole itself was located. Though not magical, the foliage was so thick Robotnik could not move his machines through it to find the Freedom Fighters. The show's somewhat green message meant that the plot of a few episodes had him trying to remove this prole through various nasty methods.
  • Lull Destruction:
    • The Games:
      Sonic: I was on a snooze cruise, I guess!
      • Sonic Heroes is a very talkative game. Not only does just about every single action have an accompanying voice clip, characters also babble to each other incessantly during gameplay, making Captain Obvious statements about the stage, bluntly stating which character should be used for the next section, and so on.
      • Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) is well-known for its constant barrage of Captain Obvious comments the characters spout (to no one in particular) in each level. This trope has to be the reason.
      • Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric has the same problem, as every single action has a line used for it (usually stating the blatantly obvious, at that). Any attempts at humor, meanwhile, tend to fall flat.
      • Sonic Forces isn't much better, with characters often talking about how they're gonna take it to Eggman and how nothing can stop them with the power of friendship and teamwork. Special shout-out to various post-mission sequences where characters talk over the radio but have lines suited for cutscenes where they're in front of each other.
    • Several dubs to Sonic X have a very controversial example of voicing over mute scenes. In episode 52, one scene has Amy crying over how she was scared that Sonic wouldn't ever come back and sobbing how she would wait for him forever. Sonic's reply is deliberately mute in the original and even Amy's crying is silent afterwards. The English dub changes it so Sonic says "Don't you worry Amy. I never will [abandon you]" and has Amy's crying as audible. The French dub scene takes this up a level and has Sonic outright saying "Of course I love you Amy—forever".
  • Mad Love:
  • Also Eggman's grandfather, Gerald Robotnik, brilliant scientist who designed a working orbital space colony and dabbled with artificial life forms among other things. He was driven insane after his granddaughter was killed by G.U.N. The depths of his hatred for the world and his desire to destroy it shocked even Eggman himself.
  • Magic Skirt:
    • Zig-zagged with Amy Rose in the the games post-Sonic Adventure. The 3D games surprisingly avert this trope, regularly having the character's panties on display from the constant jumping and fighting she does, with early betas for Adventure even having her skirt lift up when falling. The 2D games play this trope more straight however, with Amy holding down her dress whenever possible while falling or doing activities that would result in an upskirt shot. Note that we said whenever possible: you can't hold down your dress when you're using both hands to, say, hang onto a rocket for dear life during a bonus stage, after all.
  • Sonic X: Cosmo's skirt always covers her nethers no matter what position she happens to be in. Cream and Amy don't get the same treatment. In some episodes, they even don't wear any panties.
  • Magitek:
    • The Chaos Emeralds from the games. You know the drill by now. In Sonic 3 & Knuckles, the Great Eggman Robo uses the Master Emerald for a Wave Motion Gun while Mecha Sonic super charges himself with it to enter a Super Mode. In Sonic Adventure 2, it's shown that it's possible to create a fake Emerald that can actually be used to perform Chaos Control. The same game also revealed that Professor Gerald Robotnik created the Eclipse Cannon, a powerful Kill Sat fueled by the seven Emeralds. Sonic Battle has Eggman shatter a Chaos Emerald and use the shards to power his army of Phi robots. In Sonic Advance 3 Eggman uses the Emeralds to break the world into pieces, something he goes on to do again in Sonic Unleashed.
    • Sonic Sat AM: The plot of "Super Sonic" involves an ancient computerized spellbook that actually traps concentrated evil inside it.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • The Iron Queen, a Technomage who can control the electrical impulses found in all active electronics and send him out at will. As you can imagine, she's quite dangerous to opponents who are partly or completely robotic.
      • Dr. Eggman, as a man of science, complains about Chaos Emeralds being their own explanation, and having no logic to their power. Snively reminds him that he powers his own technology with Chaos Emeralds on a regular basis; Eggman concedes, but points out that he doesn't have to like it.
      • In Sonic the Hedgehog/Mega Man: Worlds Collide, both Dr. Eggman and Dr. Wily come up with the Chaos Devil, stated to be a "fusion of magic and machine" (Chaos being a water god, Yellow Devil being a blob robot).
    • The seven Chaos Emeralds and the Master Emerald were described as magical in Sonic X (and their effect on Sonic and Shadow could be said to be magic), yet were often used to power technology based equipment, such as Eggman’s robots, and the Sonic Driver.
  • Malevolent Architecture:
    • Every game ever made. Let's run through some examples:
      • Every Eggman's base seems to consist of nothing more than endless rooms filled with deathtraps, bottomless pits, robots, and Spikes of Doom, along with a few things that vary depending on the game. Justified in those cases, as Eggman can fly around in his Egg Mobile and he wants to give Sonic a hard time upon entering them.
      • One has to wonder about when Aquatic Ruin Zone from Sonic the Hedgehog 2 was more than just ruins. It's full of arrow-shooting devices, Spikes of Doom and loops, among other things.
      • Speed Highway from Sonic Adventure, and Radical Highway from the sequel. They're both floating highways with 360 degree loops, traps and bottomless pits all over the place.
      • Hang Castle from Sonic Heroes. Turning the castle upside down just to open a door?
      • The majority of Sonic Unleashed is like this, as most of it takes place in urban areas right by where people live. Cobblestone roads in Apotos have flamethrowers and beds of spikes installed in them with hovering moving platforms nearby. The walled city in Mazuri requires its inhabitants to swing from pole to pole as spike balls float around (though this may just be part of the city's defenses, as Sonic is traveling through its citadel). Fountains in Spagonia shoot Sonic to the rooftops. Giant stone walls with narrow gaps on the floor randomly block major roads in Shamar's capital city. Highways in Empire City have ramps, very sharp turns with no guardrails, and explosive roadblocks. The waters near the villages in Adabat have violet vertical jets of water and columns prone to collapsing as you approach them.
      • The front of Spagonia University in Sonic Generations has axes swinging like pendulums all over it. It is otherwise averted for most of that stage, as the danger comes either from Eggman putting enemies and death traps in front of Sonic or Sonic traveling through areas people wouldn't normally go.
  • Knuckles has spikes on his fists.
  • Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik:
  • "Eggman" with his Classic Era Jumpsuit, designed to make him look like a walrus; it doubles as a Shout-Out. (The yellow triangles from his cape represent the teeth, in case you are wondering; the rest is plain obvious).
  • Fang the Sniper has an enormous fang (almost a tusk, even) sticking out of his mouth.
  • Amy Rose. The name Amy also means "beloved" or "love". Her surname, "Rose" is French for "pink", and is also a symbol of love.
  • Big the Cat is both tall and fat,
  • Rouge the Bat often wears makeup.
  • Espio the Chameleon is a ninja chameleon. His name comes from both the Spanish term for to spy and the word "espionage".
  • Charmy Bee is charmingly cute.
  • Shadow’s name refers to his dark past and mysterious ways.
  • Shadow, Cream, and Silver also have names that refer to their fur colors.
  • Blaze the Cat has fire powers.
  • Marine the Raccoon loves ships and the ocean.
  • The Babylon Rogues. Jet the Hawk is a speed maniac hover-boarder and his teammates/siblings names, Wave the Swallow (the calm and relaxed one) and Storm the Albatross (the big and strong one) follow suit.
  • Sonic Adventure:
    • One meaning of the name Tikal is "Place of Voices". Now consider what happens which you bump her orb of light. It also refers to the site of an ancient Mayan civilization, which reflects her culture’s similarities to the Mayans in general. Similarly, her father Pachacamac is named after an ancient Peruvian temple.
  • Erazor Djinn from Sonic and the Secret Rings is a double, as he wields a giant straight razor like a sword and wants to erase the 1001 Arabian Nights.
  • Shade the Echidna from Sonic Chronicles dresses in dark blue/black.
  • Sonic Unleashed:
    • Invoked where Sonic gives Chip a.k.a ( The Light Gaia) a name due to his favorite food: chocolate chip sundae supreme ice cream.
    • Professor Pickle likes cucumber sandwiches.
  • Mecha-Mooks:
    • In the games, outside of the occasional fight with Dr. Eggman and a few other choice characters, robot mooks are pretty much Sonic's only enemies.
  • Medium Awareness:
    • In the games, Sonic is this. In the side-scroller games, he will get very impatient and give the player an annoyed look if the player does nothing. In the 360/PS3 versions of Sonic Unleashed and Sonic Generations, he will watch his score for the stage get tallied up. In the Wii version of Sonic Colors, he will call the Rotatatron the BBBEnote  and will destroy the scores in an attempt to obtain extra lives.
    • Sonic The Hedgehog And The Silicon Warriors:
      • Sonic mentions the reader and the fact he's in the book several times, with the added bonus that he knows he's normally a videogame character too, commenting that the Mystic Cave Zone had great background music.
      • Later when the inhabitants of Green Hill Zone are infected by a virus we get this gem:
      'But aren't we videogame characters anyway?' asked Tails, who had joined them by the ailing rabbit.
      'Well normally, yes' Sonic agreed, 'but at the moment we're characters in a book. Look, this talk is all getting very complicated, and we've got a real problem to deal with here.'
    • Characters in Sonic X frequently make reference to being in an anime (though only in the original Japanese version) - usually Sonic, but Dr. Eggman occasionally does it too. In one memorable episode, Eggman actually took over the show, changing the name of it to "Eggman X" (complete with new title card). Sonic eventually defeated Eggman by sending him down a maze where the right path was marked by the correct answer to a Yes/No question. The last question was "Who's the main character of this show?" with one path marked with a picture of Sonic and the other with a picture of Eggman. Eggman, naturally, went down the "Eggman" path (even though his robots actually admitted the right answer was Sonic), which naturally led to a trap. (The 4Kids Entertainment dub changed the last question to "Who's the coolest guy around?".) In another episode, Team Chaotix learned what had happened while they were away by watching Sonic X on DVD, even arguing about whether to skip the opening song or not.
    • Pretty much all of the main characters in Sonic Boom, but Sonic, Sticks, and Knuckles take the cake.
      • Sonic notes he has lots of fans, but most of them criticize everything he does. This is much more likely referring to his real world fans.
      • Knuckles notes that fans say he's too tall and talks about his character description. Also insults the writers at the end of each cliff hanger.
      • Sticks talks a lot to the viewers. She probably used to think they there just because she's crazy.
  • Meet Your Early Installment Weirdness:
    • The Games:
      • Sonic Generations has the current Sonic, Tails and Eggman bumping into the versions of themselves from the 16-bit era. Classic Tails and Classic Eggman can talk but classic Sonic is The Voiceless (both modern Sonic and Tails are fully voiced).
  • The cover of one collection of the early issues of Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog has the three different versions of Sally Acorn (her regular appearance, her orange furred – blonde haired appearance from the pilot mini-series, and her pink furred – black haired appearance from the early issues) staring at each other in confusion.
  • Mêlée à Trois:
    • The Games:
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • In one issue: Sonic vs. Scourge vs. Shadow vs. Amy vs. Rosy vs. Rob 'O vs. Metal Sonic vs. Silver... with absolutely no real clear way to tell who's fighting who and when. Though it quickly turns into everyone vs. Scourge when he turns Super.
      • At issue 162-164, an all-out battle for the crown of Acorn was fought between The Freedom Fighters, Mammoth Mogul and the Destructix, and Ixis Naugus and the Arachne. Naugus joins with Mogul during the battle when he was told by him that Mogul was the founder of the Order of Ixis, turning the battle into a simple two-sided war. The battle was interrupted by Dr. Eggman, however, and he captures Mogul, Naugus, and their forces back to his capital prisons. The Freedom Fighters won, but at the cost of Sir Connery.
      • And during one of the Sonic Universe arcs, we end up with Team Rose (Amy, Cream and Cheese, and Blaze), Team Dark (Shadow, Rouge, and Omega), Team Hooligan (Nack, Bean, and Bark), and the Babylon Rogues all fighting each other over a Sol Emerald. Teams Rose and Dark briefly team up, but by the end of the story, it quickly devolves into a four-way battle.
      • A later Sonic Universe arc, Pirate Plunder Panic, briefly becomes one of these as Team Rose and the rival pirate crews of Captain Metal and Captain Whisker fight over control of the last Sol Emerald. However, Whisker's crew gets taken out pretty quickly, leaving it a normal two-way fight.
  • Men Don't Cry:
    • Sega enforces this with the titular hero of the games. It's extremely rare for Sonic to be depicted crying in canon. Whether it's due to his gender or due to it being Out of Character for his character is hard to distinguish.
    • The staff of Sonic Sat AM got called out by Sega for depicting Sonic crying (even though he had technically just lost a family member) and were forbidden from doing so in future episodes.
    • Sonic's face was changed in one issue of Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog to tone down his tears due to this trope. However, Tropes Are Not Bad; the altered pencils are generally considered an improvement, as the original really did go overboard with the waterworks considering this is Sonic we're talking about.
    • Sonic cries when Johnny dies in Sonic the Comic, but all we see are him being teary eyed and the next panel has everyones' back turned.
    • Sonic (amazingly enough) cries at the very end of the second season finale of Sonic X, presumably over the inevitable prospect of leaving Chris. The viewer never sees either his eyes or face directly. The writers don't believe it's in Sonic's personality to cry openly as in general (but particularly in this series), as the character is supposed to be The Stoic. There was actually some flak for this at the end of a later series wherein some fans were disappointed by Sonic's inability to react after they were forced to kill Cosmo, as expressing his emotion at the event and his role in it would have been out of character.
  • "Metaphor" Is My Middle Name:
    • In the Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog's volume 0, Sonic says, "Ha! 'Speed' is my middle name! Actually, it's 'Maurice', but don't tell anyone, OK?", in response to Princess Sally asking him if he could keep up with her.
    • Done in Sonic Boom by the eponymous character.
      Sonic: Capable is my middle name.
      Knuckles: I thought your middle name was The.
  • Milestone Celebration:
    • The games have gone through several, starting in 2001:
      • The tenth anniversary was celebrated with Sonic Adventure 2, which saw the release of a "Birthday Pack", which included the game, a commemorative coin, a soundtrack CD, a booklet on the history of the franchise, and a special binding to hold them together.
      • The fifteenth, in 2006, with Sonic the Hedgehog Genesis and Sonic the Hedgehog (2006).
      • The 20th anniversary game (2011), Sonic Generations, builds off the successes of Sonic Colors and Sonic the Hedgehog 4 one year prior. Its biggest selling point is the return of the classic, black-eyed Sonic, running alongside the modern, green eyed one, each with their respective, seperate gameplay in a time travel plot that revisits areas from the preceding nine main games of the series. The plot is even based on a time-altering villain crashing Sonic's birthday party.

        It's not just the hedgehog celebrating his 20th birthday —- the Vocaloids get in the act in a minor way, as the third title of Sega's Project Diva series of Vocaloid Licensed Games, released just a few days after Generations, includes a Vocaloid cover of "Live & Learn" in the bundled bonus CD and an in-game Sonic costume for Miku because of Generations (in contrast the other Sega-themed costumes in the seriesnote  were included merely for the sake of Shout Outs).
      • Sonic Mania and Sonic Forces were both made for the 25th anniversary. The former is a Retraux 2D platformer headed by several Promoted Fanboys, while the latter brought back Classic Sonic again for a Crisis Crossover. Perhaps thanks to lessons learned after Sonic 2006, both games were released the following year (2016 marks 25 years since the release of Sonic the Hedgehog). Sonic Mania in particular launched with a celebratory limited edition physical release that includes a code to download the game, a statue of Sonic standing on a Genesis that plays the "SEGAAAA" fanfare, and a gold ring inside of a replica Sega Genesis cart.
    • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog:
      • Issue #25: Sonic CD adaptation
      • Issue #50: Conclusion of the "End Game" story arc, where Dr. Robotnik is Killed Off for Real.
      • Issue #75: Following the development from #50, an alternate-universe Robotnik resembling the games' "Eggman" version is instated as the new Big Bad.
      • Issue #100: Freedom Fighter reunion
      • Issue #125: Sonic is apparently killed
      • Issue #150: Evil Sonic mucking things around
      • Issue #175: Eggman destroys Knothole and completely defeats Sonic.
      • Issue #200: Sonic foils another one of Eggman's schemes which causes him to go through a massive Villainous Breakdown that he completely loses what left of his sanity and put out of commission. Leaving the way for Snively to take over and kickstart the Iron Dominion arc.
      • Issue #225: Sally is apparently killed and kicks off the Sonic: Genesis storyline
      • Issue #250: The beginning of the third and final act of the Crisis Crossover Sonic the Hedgehog/Mega Man: Worlds Collide, setting up the massive Cosmic Retcon that would befall the "Prime" Zone after the crossover ended. Ironically, the narrative of the issue as a standalone would be more befitting a Mega Man milestone than a Sonic one, as the bulk of it is a Big Badass Battle Sequence against nearly every Robot Master to have ever existed.. Originally, it was supposed to have been the conclusion of the Mecha Sally storyline.
      • Issue #275 is the second to last issue of the Sonic the Hedgehog/Mega Man: Worlds Unite storyline.
      • Issues #288 - 291: "Genesis of a Hero" retells the events of the Genesis games and Sonic CD to match up with the new canon.
      • Sonic Mega Drive is a one-shot created for the 25th anniversary and tells a storyline that takes place after Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Also despite its nature as a one shot, Word of God confirms that it's canon to the comic's story. Its success led to two sequels called The Next Level and Overdrive.
    • Sonic Universe:
      • It was supposed to celebrate its 50th issue with a tale set outside of the Archie continuity: an epilogue story for Sonic Underground. The story was supposedly supposed to occure later, but has certainly been scrapped since Archie abandoned the license.
      • Sonic Universe #25 kicked off Silver's storyline.
      • #75 is another Metal Sonic-based story.
    • Knuckles The Echidna #25 had Knuckles be fully reunited with his father Locke.
    • Sonic the Comic celebrated its 100th issue (and, by extension, 200th week in existence) by ending the Robotnik Rules arc, which had been going on since issue 9.
  • Minor Living Alone:
    • The Games:
      • According to Sonic Adventure, twelve year old Amy lives alone in an apartment in Station Square. By Sonic Battle Amy's moved to Central City.
      • Tails is eight years old with no family in sight. He apparently lives by himself. Tails Adventure takes place even before he met Sonic but Tails lived alone even then.
    • The Freedom Fighters in Sonic the Comic all seem young however they live alone. Only Tails has a known reason for being alone. His family lives in another Zone.
    • When we see twelve-year old Amy's house in Sonic X there are no signs of any parents. There's even a sign in front of it that says "House Of Amy Rose".
  • Mixed Animal Species Team:
    • The Games:
      • The first team to ever appear in the series is Team Chaotix (consisting of a echidna, a chameleon, a crocodile, a bee, and an armadillo) first appearing in Knuckles Chaotix.
      • Sonic Heroes has four playable teams, each with their own storyline: Team Sonic (hedgehog, fox, and echidna), Team Dark (hedgehog, bat, and a robot), Team Rose (hedgehog, rabbit, and cat), and the return of Team Chaotix (chameleon, crocodile, and bee).
      • Sonic Riders has the same teams as Sonic Heroes (except for Team Chaotix), as well as the Babylon Rogues (consisting of a hawk, a swallow, and an albatross).
      • In Sonic Forces, after Dr. Eggman takes over the entire world and Sonic disappears, his allies form The Resistance to counter it.
      • Sonic Mania Plus' Encore Mode allows you to play as Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, Mighty, and Ray (a hedgehog, fox, echidna, armadillo, and flying squirrel, respectively), and switch between each character when you find special power-ups.
  • In Sonic the Comic, Sonic is the lead member of the Freedom Fighters, which are a group of Funny Animals trying to overthrow the tyrant human Dr, Robotnik. The main cast consists of: Sonic (hedgehog), Tails (fox), Johnny (rabbit), Porker Lewis (pig), Amy (hedgehog), Tekno (canary), and Shorty (squirrel).
  • In Sonic X, the first 26 episodes of the first series had Dr. Eggman's randomly-deployed robots, each one with an E-(insert number here) as their serial number, and the first 11 episodes of the first half of the second series had random Metarex encountered by Sonic and co. along their journey to save the universe from the Metarex.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • Pretty much a staple of the games. Things can go from humorously comedic to dark and apocolyptic in a manner of moments.
      • Sonic Adventure 2 starts out as a very lighthearted, silly and quite random kid's game. There are hints of darkness here and there; Shadow's flashbacks, the references to "terrorists" and "weapons of mass destruction." But lots of kid's stories have a dead sibling and lots of them involve terrorists and WMDs even if they don't usually call them that. The game does a complete 180, however, the second Gerald appears. His last words at his public execution and the things revealed in his diary may well make this one of the darkest games ever to be marketed towards children.
      • An admittedly minor example: the victory jingle from Sonic Chronicles. It's odd to lurch from the game's sinister, driving battle music to... cheering children?
    • Sonic X, the original version, at least, has a fairly emotionally heavy ending to the second season, what with Sonic explaining to Chris why he stayed behind and Chris's reaction. Following into the dub-only season 3, which starts with... a really bad pun.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate:
    • The games have Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik: Evil. Nobody has any idea what Ivo's doctorate is in. Probably engineering, if the robots he designs are any indication.
    • Dr. Eggman from Sonic Boom. Evil, only kinda harmless. The episode "Mister Eggman" reveals he actually didn't get his doctorate in Evil Science, so he went back and got his degree since without, everyone started calling him Mr. Eggman, which was a bit less intimidating.
  • Mr. Vice Guy:
    • The Games:
      • Sonic is very prideful, making him cocky or reckless in the face of danger, but is an easy going All-Loving Hero in every other area.
      • Rouge the Bat is a government spy with a bad habit of being greedy and obsessive with jewels.
      • Despite being helpful to the heroes and being dedicated in guarding the Master Emerald, Knuckles suffers about three vices. One, he's quite prideful about his strength. Two, he's envious of Sonic's freedom and carefree nature. And three, he has a very short temper which can make him difficult for others to get along with him.
      • Tails is very intelligent, but retains a very childish demeanor, making him impudent or over excitable.
      • The Chaotix are basically this personified, a misfit gang of so-called detectives who ultimately have good intentions at heart. Vector is extremely brash and rough around the edges and is horrible with money, but notices things others don't and offers his services free of charge to those that deserve them. Charmy is incredibly hyper-active and childish, yet is only occasionally mischievous. Espio often fails to successfully reign in the excesses of his two partners, but is otherwise extremely competent and dedicated towards whatever mission he's assigned to.
    • Pointed out in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, where Scourge, one of Sonic's many, many antagonists, observes that they share the same arrogance and vanity, though that he lacks what he describes as a "limiting factor" - Sonic's moral compunction.
    • The heroic hedgehog siblings on Sonic Underground each have their own short-comings: Sonic is the bravest of the three, and therefore the most brash. Sonia is whiny and overly-concerned with petty things like dirt and dust, but has a host of technical and social abilities to make up for it. Manic, meanwhile, struggles with the kleptomaniac impulses he learned growing up (he was raised by a thief), but otherwise is the most laid-back and approachable of the bunch.
  • Ms. Fanservice:
    • Rouge the Bat was a bizarre attempt at trying to introduce this kind of character into games otherwise aimed at kids. Besides her exposed cleavage and tight-fitting jumpsuit (which could be replaced with an even more skimpy outfit in the original Dreamcast version of Sonic Adventure 2), she even acts promiscuous and flirty with the other characters.
    • Due to Art Evolution in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog, a significant portion of the comic (Issue 60s-180s) turned the resident heroines Bunnie Rabbot and Sally Acorn much more humanoid. The former wears bunny outfit's top, the latter is next to being literally fur-naked. While it was toned down post-180s, it was pretty much rendered null after the Continuity Reboot.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless:
  • Musical Pastiche:
    • The Games:
      • Sonic the Hedgehog 3 and Sonic & Knuckles had a different music composer than the first two games, hence the absence of the original title theme, but the main boss theme is a pastiche of both the miniboss theme(the second part) and the Sonic 1 boss theme(the first part, somewhat more resembles the Final Boss version).
      • Sonic Adventure 2's various level themes often echo "Live and Learn," the game's theme song.
      • In Sonic Unleashed, the first few seconds of the opening cutscene music sound remarkably like something from Star Wars.

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