Look Sonic, There’s a Big Black Cloud Over Hilltop Village

So we’ve primarily concerned ourselves with the games (Sonic, Tails, Badniks, rings, zones) and SatAM (the Freedom Fighters, Swatbots, Uncle Chuck, Robotnik’s appearance). But what about that other show, the goofy one that aired on weekdays and was basically like sniffing glue while horseback riding?

Yes, folks. It’s time for an Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog “adaptation.”

At last, the secret ingredient to Uncle Chuck's chili dogs is revealed.

Triple Trouble!
Writer: Michael Gallagher
Penciler: Dave Manak
Inker: Jon D’Agostino
Letterer: Dan Nakrosis
Colorist: Daryl America

Robotnik’s not desecrating a Sonic pinata this time; he’s just throwing darts at a Sonic dartboard. Crabmeat wants to help, but Robotnik says the Badnik has failed him continuously, which is weird since Crabmeat hasn’t really done much of anything. A bunch of Crabmeats even stalled Sonic long enough to help Robotnik knock him off a cliff, which seems pretty useful! But Robotnik’s always looking for the next big thing, and so we have the introduction of Coconuts, a robotic monkey who throws exploding… coconuts. We also get our obligatory awkward and over-the-heads-of-young-readers pun: when Coconuts blows up Crabmeat, the lackey moans that he’s been given a “blown to bit part.” AUGH

Sonic and Tails are out running or training or just pallin’ around when COCONUTS THE ROBOTIC MONKEY WHO THROWS EXPLODING COCONUTS shows up. All things considered, I was actually expecting more monkey puns from this issue – I mean, there’s still a lot, but I anticipated more. Way to not go ape over the puns, Mike.

This is a really cool coloring and perspective effect here. Nothing snarky to say for once!

Tails gasps and Sonic growls, but then Tails is the one who wants to charge at Coconuts, which is a little weird. Sonic has a different idea: they’re gonna play “monkey in the middle” (DOHOHOHO) with the exploding coconut, and they bounce it back and forth before it lands on Coconuts. They very conveniently mail his remains back to Robotropolis. Now that’s service!

Incidentally, this is the first issue Tails has actually done something substantial other than run around, get hooked on a fishing line, or paint a picture underwater: he uses his tails to help toss the coconut around. It’s a start!

Robotnik is none too pleased with the failure of Coconuts the robotic coconut-throwing monkey who happens to throw coconuts that happen to explode, so he opens up a Sonic action figure just so he can smash it. This is getting a little creepy – Robotnik’s owned a Sonic pinata, a Sonic dartboard, and a Sonic action figure. I wonder how much other Sonic merchandise Robotnik owns. He probably bought Sonic 3 the day it came out! (PLOT TWIST: Robotnik is actually the secret president of the Sonic Fan Club.)

Anyway, we have two new Badniks to get the job done (raise your hands if you didn’t see this one coming): Scratch and Grounder! The giant chicken with the shrill voice and the stout… thing with a goofy baritone. Robotnik calls them “non-identical twins,” dubs them members of the Super Special Sonic Search and Smash Squad (actually he calls Scratch the leader, which might explain a few things), and bids them on their way.

Scratch and Grounder are none too bright. This is one of their two defining character traits, and it’s emphasized when Grounder’s chestplate phone rings.

"Is your robo-machine running? WELL THEN YOU'D BETTER CATCH IT DOHOHOHO"

The non-identical twins use their copy of “How to Track a Hedgehog” (?!?) to help locate Sonic. Grounder takes the opportunity to clumsily explain what his powers are: his weird drill hands can turn into “any kind of machine.” Scratch doesn’t really seem to have any powers beyond excessive nagging. I think Robotnik just made him the leader because, being a chicken, he kinda fits the ‘egg’ theme Ivo loves so much.

Sonic and Tails are hiding – apparently Sonic left a false trail because he knew they’d have bought the “How to Track a Hedgehog” book (?!?!?!?). I hope Amy Rose doesn’t have a copy of this book! Sonic gives Tails a multiple-choice answer for why the fox has to exit this story; I like “Because I said so” because it makes their relationship that much funnier.

So Sonic gets the drop on the robots, but then they get the drop on him – more specifically, Grounder shoots a cable out of his arm and ensnares Sonic in it. Now we see Scratch and Grounder’s other identifying character trait – they bicker. Incessantly. Scratch wants to take credit for Grounder’s plan and they end up fighting each other.

Forget Julie-Su and Lien-Da - this is the biggest sibling rivalry in the comics.

Naturally Sonic runs in circles around them, which seems to be his default method of solving problems. This time he creates a trench and they fall into the dirt. I was hoping for an AoStH-inspired sequence in which Sonic puts on an obviously-fake disguise, possibly in drag, and hoodwinks the robots, but hey, what are you gonna do.

Vertigo A Go Go!
Writer: Michael Gallagher
Penciler: Dave Manak
Inker: Jon D’Agostino
Letterer: Dan Nakrosis
Colorist: Daryl America

Sonic is out collecting “magic rings” that will help the Freedom Fighters defeat Robotnik in some unspecified way. Maybe they were bought at the same shop as the Freedom Emeralds, which I imagine is called “Acorn Vagueries: When You Need an Unspecific Plot Device.” The hedgehog sees an unusual cluster of eight rings that distract him from noticing a hidden spring. I’m not sure if these two things are related, but either way he gets shot into some weird hole in the sky and –

AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH

Whew, that was a close call. That fourth wall almost got annihilated!

Turns out this weird hole in the sky is some psychedelic zone thing hosted by Verti Cal (tall, skinny) and Horizont Al (short, stout). Sonic has trouble adjusting to the zone’s physics, which basically amount to ‘inflict the largest amount of pain on him as possible.’ Al and Cal just stand around talking and Sonic literally invites them to join the Freedom Fighters for some reason. Maybe they can make some portal guns.

And that’s pretty much this entire six-page story. It’s reminiscent of that Bugs Bunny cartoon where Bugs, usually cool and unflappable, gets completely devastated by this gremlin thing during the entire cartoon. Sonic is obviously on the butt end of the joke here; it’s too bad the punchline isn’t funny. But hey WRITE IN IF YOU WANT TO SEE MORE AL AND CAL

More filler pages. The only thing of note here is that Sonic outright states there was a Burrobot invasion in Knothole the other day, which… just furthers my notion that the Badniks know where Knothole is, they just don’t want to tell Robotnik. I mean, would you want to willingly help a crazy egomaniac who “promotes” your friends to the spare parts department and builds a casino for them to spend the money they don’t make (but if they do make money they get dismantled)? Doesn’t seem like a positive work environment. And this is the silly version of Robotnik!

There’s a brief two-page thing about Tails at the end, with some fan conjecture (all of which seems pretty fake) about how the fox got his two tails. Ideas suggested here include circus freak, lab experiment, and “stole it from Antoine.” I don’t know which of these is worse. Tails also blatantly begs for a three-issue miniseries. I know I can’t wait to see Tails blunder around and do nothing on a solo adventure! That makes it better than all the times he blunders around and does nothing with other people.

Well, I guess this issue is ove-
“Heyowza, Speed Demons! It’s OFFICIAL! SONIC THE HEDGEHOG – THE CARTOON airs this fall, Saturday mornings on ABC! And if that tain’t enough, SEGA’s premiering the SONIC 3 video game soon! Just the thought sends me into a SONIC HYPERVENTILATING SPIN! Welcome to the next level of SAND-BLASTING SUSPENSE!

Dream on!

-Daryl”

I think I figured out what Daryl’s issue is. Obviously Sega let him in on the secret of BLAST PROCESSING. This is what happens when you meddle with things that are far beyond your control.

Of note: the art quality in this issue really improved. The comic brought on inker Jon D’Agostino and colorist Daryl “Captain” America (I don’t know if that’s his nickname or not, I just think it’s funny) and you can pretty much instantly see a difference: the world looks more vibrant and there’s fewer mistakes (though there’s still some). It’s definitely easier on the eyes than the issues that came before.

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