REVIEW: ‘Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1
Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1 is published by IDW Publishing, written by Ian Flynn, art by Jack Lawrence, colors by Leonardo Ito, and letters by Shawn Lee. Dr. Starline is looking for a way to defeat Sonic so he can push forward his idol, Dr. Eggman’s agenda. But, short on tech, and lacking the physical attributes necessary for a direct confrontation, the bad doctor is left at an impasse. Whatever could aid him in his endeavors? Maybe some not-so-trusted allies.

Sonic the Hedgehog holds a special place in this comic reader’s heart. The blue blur was the first-ever monthly comic I collected. From that innocent beginning, I fell down the rabbit hole that led me to my first comic shop and the discovery of the more mainstream series like X-Men and Batman. And even though it’s clear a lot has changed in the intervening two decades (I’m so old), it’s nice to see the Sonic brand is still associated with bright colored fun reading, even if this story is all about the bad guys.

Having recently fallen-out with his mentor Dr. Eggman, our story opens with our main character trying to procure some equipment from his former mentor. When this fails, he must go back to the drawing board if he wishes to move his agenda forward. He quickly decides that in order to do this he must acquire some allies. But first, he’s going to need to break them out of prison.

Everybody loves it when a team comes together, even if that team is on the wrong side of right. In some ways, it must be a giddy sort of thrill to write characters with the mindsets of Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1‘s core cast. With each exhibiting one of the core Saturday morning styles of villainy, writer Flynn gets to have fun with so many of the classic archetypes. From the mustache-twirling plotter to the big dumb muscle, all the most recognizable villain tropes are here. And what’s more, they’re fun.

Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1 baddies fall into that kid’s style of villain that is often more goofy than threatening. With sleep rays and hypnosis being implemented as often as brute force to overcome their adversaries, it’s like they are bad but they don’t want to be THAT bad.

These sorts of quirky villain centric plots are why many of the most interesting characters from my childhood were villains. They got to be more fun but were always reigned in enough that no one ever really got hurt so you didn’t feel bad cheering for them.

The art of Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1 delivers bright visuals and comical characters perfectly. Between the linework of Lawrence and Ito’s colors, the presentation perfectly captures that Saturday morning vibe the book’s narrative builds.

Finally, we have the lettering. While the job of letterer is to present the story in an easily readable manner, this is doubly important when a title is likely to appeal to a younger audience. Following the dialogue from panel to panel is a trained skill with more complex books. Books like Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1 is where you first learn the basics. Happily, letterer Lee seems to be acutely aware of this fact and has kept the setup of the dialogue bubbles as clear as could be asked for, suitable for a reader of any age or experience level.

When all is said and done, Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1 delivers a strong start for this story and has a fair helping of fun along the way.

Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1 is available on October 7th wherever comics are sold.


Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1
4

TL;DR

When all is said and done, Sonic the Hedgehog: Bad Guys #1 delivers a strong start for this story and has a fair helping of fun along the way.