The thirtieth edition of IDW’s Sonic The Hedgehog is another issue where Ian Flynn takes stock of where the characters are and begins to start lining them up for the next storyline. As with previous issues, it’s slightly difficult to comment on this as an isolated story, as it’s transitioning the characters to where they need to be.
Eggman runs off, collecting Orbot and Cubot and plotting to take advantage of a Sonic-less world. Knuckles wants everyone off the floating island, the Deadly Six are split but still roaming large, and Sonic is now in Blaze’s dimension. That is pretty much what happens plot wise, but again the writing allows for a few brief snapshots of little character moments.
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From Knuckles’ constant reiterating that Sonic will be returning, to Amy’s fatigue and grasping for optimism, it’s a reminder that there are plenty of spinning plates to keep track of. Everyone gets their moment to shine.
In terms of set-pieces, there’s a super team-up that sees quite a few characters take down Zavok easily, and the highlight – the failed pursuit of an escaping Eggman. It leads to a pretty impressively drawn fight between Shadow and Metal Sonic that includes the destruction of Gemerl. This being a children’s comic, the death of a main character would be non-existent, so the fact that a robot has been ripped apart means we’ll see them be recreated in a few issues time.
The fight itself is one of the better drawn of the whole series so far. It’s only three pages but you get a good sense of the speed and power being used in the battle as they clash with each other. Metal Sonic has an advantage the whole time and he’s always drawn above Shadow looking down, meaning that it feels fruitless but you get a sense of Shadow’s determination to keep on fighting. It’s very well done and a good use of Shadow.
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But what of the next arc? For one, Google Docs might start panicking that the term “zombot” hasn’t been written but may also be relieved that it’s over and done with. Sonic finding himself in Blaze’s dimension. Considering Blaze’s dimension hasn’t been involved much and the processing of visiting hasn’t exactly been covered – the cliffhanger doesn’t land as well as it might do as it’s difficult to remember how dramatic it’s supposed to be.
But at least what it offers is the ability to not keep the query over Sonic’s “return” a lingering question, and thus removes that from what we can assume is an arc where the rest of the resistance battles Eggman without him.
Sonic the Hedgehog #30 is out now from IDW Publishing.