Oh. Okay. Hmm. So this is the end of the “Metal Virus Saga” as the comic calls it. It did feel like it ended a couple of issues ago, but as Eggman attacks a Sonic-less group of friends and they try to work together, Blaze restores Sonic’s memories and sends him back to his dimension to beat Eggman. He then runs off for more adventures.
In the small tantalising hint for the next issue on the last panel, it states that this was the epilogue for the Zombot arc… but if anything the comic has felt like it’s moved on and was moving pieces of its next story. Characters were dealing with Sonic being missing and the start of this issue saw how they were coping against an Eggman attack without him.
Whether there’s a longer term plan for the abrupt decision to have Sonic easily gain his memories back and be sent home so quickly remains to be seen. But here it feels as if the cost to remove the virus was undercut to get things back to the status quo. It feels as if writer Ian Flynn started to write something but then changed his mind immediately. There’s a slight issue with this approach when the reaction at the end of an issue is “what’s the point of that, then?”.
Considering the series knows how to balance the action set-pieces within a grander narrative, the ongoing and flowing nature of Eggman attacking means that the pacing never felt like it was stalling. It kept the feeling that life was carrying on and the characters having to adapt. Here it feels as if that work was for nothing.
But there’s the usual examples of the little-cog-big-machine that the comic does well on display before Sonic’s return. The lack of a clear leader at first means that Vector assumes the role with ease – and it’s a decent showcase for him for a change. But it does get overshadowed by the rush to wrap things up.
It still looks nice, however. Adam Bryce Thomas’ art has probably been the best this series has seen so far: the characters look the best they can, and the representation of the action and its scale never disappoints. That first full panel panel of Eggman and Omega and the good guys standing looking upwards is pretty fantastic.
Perhaps the soft reboot is a blessing as the series gets ready to explore new stories. It’s just a shame that it didn’t decide to do it in a more naturally serialised way.
Sonic the Hedgehog #32 is out now from IDW Publishing.