Super Comics: Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW) – #42

Sonic the Hedgehog (the comic book series) and all the images you see in this recap are owned by IDW and SEGA of America

So after catching up on an issue that came out last month, I can look downright timely by reviewing an issue that’s just under a week old, right?  Sure, I like to get these things out within DAYS of their release, but with so much going on with the website (not the least of which being my WRESTLING PODCAST WHICH YOU SHOULD LISTEN TO RIGHT AFTER FINISHING THIS!), the latest issue just kinda flew under the radar for me.  I’ll make sure to do better next time (which is the same promise I made for half a dozen other projects I was working on) but for now let’s see where this whole Deadly Six storyline is going!  Do they find an interesting direction to take this storyline after the less than stellar opening chapter, or will this arc be one giant bore from start to finish?  Let’s find out!!

The issue begins with everyone in place for the upcoming Zeti attack as The Chaotix are in Sunset City, Tails is in Central City, and Sonic is in Winterberg; all of which are names you PROBABLY shouldn’t give to a city.  Sunset City sounds like where Michael Bay films his movies, Central City will always be a relative concept, and what the heck do you do with a town called Winterberg in the summer months?  Does it change its name to Heatville!?  Now the last issue was a lot of exposition to simply explain why characters are in certain locations without any really interesting dialogue or clear character motivations.  Right off the bat things are much better here as Tails is working on a plan to stop the Zeti when found and Sonic is in a somewhat dark mood despite doing his best to chillax before whatever big fight is upon them.  It helps with investing us in the struggle itself because of how it affects the characters who are stuck in the middle of it, and since we know things are gonna go wrong as this is all a ruse set up by the Zeti there will no doubt be some high emotional stakes once things hit the fan.

“The one thing I can’t outrun is my own hatred for the Deadly Six. It’s such a silly and awkward name too! DANG IT, they suck!”

Sure enough, The Zeti attack The Restoration directly, and yeah it’s a bit hard to believe that the ENTIRE base doesn’t have enough security and main characters to repel these six punks, but credit where it’s due as they are NOT playing around and literally drive a flaming truck right into their front gate!  From there they proceed to tear apart the mall-looking area we saw in issue 37, and the only two main characters on hand (Tangle & Whisper) are fortifying the command center which leaves nothing but nameless guards to fail miserably at stopping them.  They TRY to explain this with Master Zik telling Zavok how this society values peace which makes them ill-prepared for combat, and I’ll give them credit for at least giving SOME sort of excuse here, but this is also the society that survived countless Eggman attacks, the Zombot virus, and even the Zeti on a previous occasion.  You’d think that SOME of them would have learned to prepare for the worst even if they’re striving for peace!

“I don’t get paid enough for this crap…”

The Zeti aren’t the only ones that The Restoration should be wary of however as Dr. Starline managed to find a secret entrance to the base mere moments before the attack.  You can call it an unbelievable coincidence to make the writer’s life easier if you’d like, but for my money, ANY issue of this series is instantly better with the inclusion of Dr. Starline!  He’s definitely been one of the strongest additions to the franchise since the IDW series started; rivaling even Tangle & Whisper for that honor and possibly even surpassing them as his mini-series was overall more entertaining than the one they got!  So why is he here in the first place?  Well his encounter with Belle back in the Chateau story arc left him curious as to how she was constructed, so he wants to kidnap her to study in detail and gain greater insight into the mind of his hero Dr. Eggman!

“Can’t you tell by his silhouette!?”     “Shame on you, Belle!  You shouldn’t judge a book by its shadow!”

Starline manages to convince Belle to go with him by attacking the gorilla dude, and they manage to sneak away while everyone else is dealing with the Zeti.  Speaking of whom, Sonic, Tails, and The Chaotix, are all made aware of this subterfuge right away, but the only one who can get there with any sort of expediency is the one who is WAY PAST COOL, so while Tails is clambering into his plane with his anti-Zeti weapons and The Chaotix are doing… something, Sonic is already there and ready to throw down!  The Zeti did manage to get as far as the fortified door to the command center, but they aren’t about to get any closer now that Sonic is on the scene and ready to fight!  And so the issue comes to an end with The Zeti super ticked off that their plans are being interrupted and Sonic striking his super cool hero pose to the delight of fans!

“Take a picture!  It will last longer!”     “YOU FOOL!  We will turn it into an NFT and make MILLIONS!”     “Wait, so was that our plan the whole time?”     “We can have more than one plan!”

This was a HUGE step up from the first issue of the arc which just kinda puttered around and rearranged the pieces for a while.  This had some of that as well with finding a way to fit Dr. Starline into it, but it wasn’t overly burdened with dull minutia and instead allowed the characters to be themselves while also setting up the rest of the arc.  This storyline with Belle and Starline will certainly have some interesting twists and turns to it, and if nothing else the Zeti will get their chance to show what they can do in a six on one match against Sonic.  It’s still far from the best that I’ve seen from the comic, but I’m much happier with where we are now than where we were at the end of the last issue!

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