Sonic the Hedgehog (the comic book series) and all the images you see in this recap are owned by IDW and SEGA of America
It’s been no secret that I have been nonplussed by this arc in the Sonic Comic because of just how much it drones on and on with zombie trope after zombie trope as if they weren’t already beaten to death in the wake of Shaun of the Dead. The last few issues in particular have been particularly stagnant as we can’t even move forward temporally with each issue following a different character on the same day so we know where everything ends up even before starting the next tedious zombie ridden chapter! We’ve already covered Tails, Amy, and now it’s Sonic’s turn to tell us how his miserable day went miserably just like every other day since the apocalypse began, but will they find a way to at least make HIS side of it any more interesting? Let’s find out!!
The issue begins with Sonic continuing to run his butt off so that the super Fit Bit Tails had given him can collect data that may be able to produce a cure for Eggman’s Zom-bot virus that has swept the globe and made everything so dreadfully repetitive around here. Luckily for him though, he JUST SO HAPPENS to pass by one of the many deserted villages and sees Eggman in his little hover thingy along with Dr. Starline who are trying some new techniques to regain control of the Zombot army. The two are bickering incessantly which is more than enough of a distraction for Sonic to get in nice and close!
If nothing else, at least we’re putting the ACTUAL conflict front and center for once as Starline and Eggman have barely even been in the last couple of issues, and when they have they barely did anything. At least here we get to hear Eggman monologue about just how evil he is and we get to hear Starline’s dwindling opinion of the bad doctor, though while I’m glad we DO get a bit more from him it’s all very on the nose and longwinded.
Sonic and Eggman fight for a bit and eventually Starline uses his Warp Topez to get him and Eggman out of there leaving Sonic to the teaming masses swarming upon him. Despite how tired he is and how emotionally drained at the fact that he basically caused all this by letting Eggman go he almost gives up hope, BUT being the marketable mascot of a multi-million dollar company infuses him with Main Character Powers and so he digs a bit deeper and finds the strength to continue. The downside however is that the super Fit Bit was destroyed in the fight which means that all of the collected data is gone, and if you recall from issue 21, Tails lost the data he had collected as well so I’m assuming this means that all hope is lost and that the series will end in the next issue or so when everyone has become a Zom-bot. No of course that’s not what they’re going to do, and fine I’m a grown adult reading a book intended for children, but you’d think that something aimed at that particular audience wouldn’t get constantly mired in setbacks, sadness, tragedy, and dwindling hope. Say what you will about the early Archie Sonic comics which were nothing but a series of gags, they at least kept things light and were ultimately building towards an interesting and expansive universe with its own history, mysteries, and cast of unique characters! That’s why Tangle & Whisper is working so well by the way. As dour as some of the scenes are in that, there is always hope, joy, and growth as we learn more about those characters and where they came from. So anything else worth mentioning here?
Well remember that subplot introduced in issue 21 where Starline started communicating with the bad guys from Sonic Lost Worlds? Well with Eggman continued failures to get the Zom-bots under control or even pretend to care about doing that, Starline has no choice but to put his plan with the Zeti’s from Lost World (doesn’t seem so lost to me if Starline is able to find it) and lets them know that they’ll be needed soon. The head Zeti named Zavok promises him their undying loyalty while laughing heartily behind Starline’s back, but as it turns out Starline isn’t the great fool that Zavok perceives him to be as he has his own plans in store for the Zeti which we’ll hopefully see put into action in the next issue!
I’m gonna say something I haven’t said in a while which is that I think this issue of Sonic the Hedgehog was actually pretty good! No, it doesn’t have A LOT of content which is why I just kind of blazed by it like I did the other more recent issues, but the zom-bots were properly framed as an extension of Dr. Eggman’s maniacal will which is the TRUE menace rather than just as the menace on its own. I don’t need to see these characters fighting the equivalent of nameless henchmen for issue upon issue when we could be dealing with the ACTUAL bad guys, and we finally got back to that here. I’m curious to see where Dr. Starline ends up fitting into all this as he seems to have enough wits about himself to not be immediately murdered or otherwise indisposed from the series once this arc is over, and frankly we could use a few more villains that ACTUALLY pose a threat other than Eggman and Metal Sonic. What, are we REALLY expecting the Lost Worlds baddies to do more than get their butt kicked now that Starline has the mind control conch of ultimate power? Are they going to bring back that Doctor Claw sounding dude from Shadow the Hedgehog? Nah, we need some home grown talent and Starline, despite the limitations of the arc he finds himself in, is certainly fitting the BILL! You know… like a duck bill? Hey, at least my jokes are better than the ten BILLIONTH zombie story you’ve seen in your life!