Category Archives: Books

Wizards and Warriors: The Turmoil of Geoffrey St. John

SO, anyone out there excited about the upcoming release of Lost Hedgehog Tales? Who am I kidding, of course you are! This blog turns up in LHT search results at least once or twice a week, and I doubt it’s due to Ken Penders gnashing his teeth. At this point, I think we’re all in a tizzy over the unofficial sort-of-a-book due to another teaser tweet last month, courtesy of Archie’s lead Sonic the Hedgehog writer, Ian Flynn

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Well, my friends, August is drawing to a close, which means we could see a release any day now! In light of the impending euphoria, I’ve decided to share some thoughts I’ve waxed upon with regard to a particular character. This isn’t the same as my comic page investigation; it’s merely the personal hunch I always had while reading the pre-reboot (preboot?) Sonic comics.

One character that has never failed to hold my attention under Flynn’s pen is Geoffrey St. John. After having abandoned the comics over a decade before, I got back into them purely because I was fascinated by the sudden developments surrounding this skunk and wanted to know more about where he was going. Once a particularly bland and frequently unlikable character, Geoffrey managed to gain a significant foothold in the preboot story with his unexpected alliance swap. Despite having spent the history of the comics as one of the kingdom’s highest-ranking soldiers, Geoffrey shocked everyone with the revelation that he had been training in wizardry all along — under none other than Ixis Naugus, one of the most powerful villains of the entire series.

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Had Geoffrey really abandoned his former allies in their darkest hour? Was he ever really an ally to begin with? For someone that had always been mercilessly anal retentive about procedure, justice, and fulfilling his duties, how could he pull the rug out from under so many people like this? Didn’t it go against everything he’d ever stood for?

Actually, none of those are the real question. Those queries can be answered by figuring out an even bigger mystery: What really happened to Hershey St. John?

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Lost Hedgehog Tales: Leedzie’s Sneak Peek

Never one to quit while he’s ahead, Ken Penders clashed with Sonic’s comic book fans yet again last weekend. After singularly taking credit for the success of the Sonic the Hedgehog comic book series (going so far as to call himself its “savior“), he then went on to downplay the roles of his fellow writers, invoking the fiery inferno of many Archie fans’ collective rage.

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Coincidentally, Ian Flynn had also tweeted just a couple hours earlier that night — and in such a way that indirectly referenced Penders’ unrelenting ego.

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The screenshot shows Flynn’s current progress on his Lost Hedgehog Tales project, a behind-the-scenes look at the storylines forcibly abandoned in the Sonic the Hedgehog comics due to Penders’ copyright battle. The document’s release is highly anticipated by Archie Sonic fans, both for curiosity and for closure, as several plot points received hurried and unsatisfying resolutions. Others never saw a resolution at all.

As one of the folks eagerly awaiting Lost Hedgehog Tales‘ release, I’ve decided to give you all a preview. No, I don’t have any direct contact with Ian Flynn, but I do have clues as to what was intended to happen in one specific arc of the story. All it took was some attention to detail and a little investigation.

Well, and $45.

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Archie Sonic Comics Writer to Explain Scrapped Plotlines Summer 2014

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Ian Flynn, current writing lead of Archie’s Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic Universe comic franchises, announced on his forum yesterday that he intends to fill in the gaps left behind by the September 2013 reboot of the comic storylines. Lost Hedgehog Tales, a compendium of all of Flynn’s notes, proposals, and ideas that never made it to print, will be produced by Flynn himself in his spare time and is expected to be ready for distribution by next summer.

It’s not clear yet if it’s going to be a digital or hard copy distribution — or even what Archie may think of the project. When asked what his employers feel about the idea, Flynn noted that he had no idea because he had not yet asked them.

“Since this material isn’t being used by them, and a fair bit of it was never shown to them, they’re not really involved. This is just me doing something for the fans. An informal, unlicensed, non-profit, unofficial thing for fun.”

He also noted that the first page of this piece will include a lengthy disclaimer so as to dissuade certain individuals from getting their copyrighted knickers in a twist.

Flynn currently has an open call for any and all questions pertaining to the former comic continuity, noting that not everything he’d planned is written down and his own memory may fail him if he’s not specifically directed to certain details. To submit questions, join the BumbleKing Forums and leave a message in this thread.

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Sonic the Hedgehog and all related characters, locations, and whatever else are © Sega no matter what Ken Penders says. Lost Hedgehog Tales is © nobody because Ian Flynn explicitly stated that it’s just him shooting the shit and that’s an exercise of his first amendment rights.

Countdown to the 12th Doctor

The moment of truth is nearly here: After months of waiting, Doctor Who‘s 50th Anniversary Special is finally airing simultaneously around the world. Those of you that read my season 7 finale theories can imagine my anxiousness to find out the truth, and as Whovians worldwide gear up for the big reveal, we also can’t help but revel in our fandom. BBC America, for example, has been airing nothing but Doctor Who episodes, movies, and TV specials nearly non-stop all week, and the internet has exploded with anticipation over the soon-to-arrive 12th Doctor. This blog is no exception, but I’m not talking about Peter Capaldi; I have my sights set on a different shapeshifting doctor.

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Those that read this blog regularly may recall that there’s likely to be a 12th Doctor Eggman on the horizon for the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise as well. According to the preview image released for the upcoming animated series Sonic Boom, the characters are getting redesigned — some more drastically than others. As of this writing, we still have no preview of Eggman, which leaves a lot of speculation in the air. Will he be close to his current design? Will he harken back to a more classic style? Or will they invent a new look entirely to go with the new story?

As we anticipate the appearance of Doctor Who’s new face, I thought it might be fun to look back at the many faces of another oft-changing doctor while we wait for his new look as well.

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Countdown to the 12th Doctor: #1

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Along with the sketches of Mr. Needlemouse, the original set of Eggman drawings are one of the most important documents in Sega’s history. After all, a hero is only as good as its villain, and the proto-version of Eggman wasn’t even originally conceived as an antagonist. Without those initial drawings, I wouldn’t be writing this article at all. I feel obligated to devote the first segment of this series to this version of the character if just out of respect.

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Countdown to the 12th Doctor: #2

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And right out of the gate, Eggman is already hard at work showing us just how many faces he can have. Even at this early stage, several continuities have already begun to arise, each with their own stylings and personality traits. This taught us from the beginning that no two Eggmen are ever exactly alike.

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Countdown to the 12th Doctor: #3

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The name “Kintobor” is exactly what it looks and sounds like: It’s a backwards version of Robotnik. These versions of the doctor are those that have not crossed the threshold into evil (although that does await a couple of them in the future). They have no interest in fighting short of self-defense, and they work to better the world through their skills and technologies. This group’s look is one of the most unique, as not only is Kintobor’s appearance typically removed from Eggman/Robotnik’s, but furthermore the four of them don’t really resemble one another, either.

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Countdown to the 12th Doctor: #4

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For the bulk of the fandom, this is the least liked version of Robotnik — which is why it’s so surprising that it’s the most prolific. In addition to starring in the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon, this design went on to appear in over 25 children’s books, his own video game, and numerous toys — regardless of what story canon was in use. He even went on to become one of the main characters of the famed Sega World amusement park in Sydney, Australia.

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Countdown to the 12th Doctor: #5

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I honestly didn’t mean to name this section after SatAM Robotnik, but honestly, that’s what this design is the most known for. The look was imported into Sonic Underground and the Archie comic books, but even in those cases, the design is often referred to as the “SatAM style.” (They were both technically loose continuations of the SatAM canon anyway, so I suppose it’s fair.) I can’t think of a better description than the one that’s already in use.

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Countdown to the 12th Doctor: #6

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It may seem odd to list Robotnik’s youth as its own section, but it’s never been a secret that Time Lords vary what age they resemble each time they regenerate. It’s not unreasonable to think that a child-like regeneration could occur, and these designs DID turn up well into Dr. Robotnik’s tenure. I think it’s only fair that they be acknowledged along with everyone else, no matter how horrifying this first one is.

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