Sonic is an undeniable creature of the video game world, long considered the cross-company rival to Mario. But he’s had almost as long a history in cartoons and comics as has in games: to date, there have been no less than five Sonic animated TV shows, plus the live-action movie. In 2022, the sixth one will come to Netflix.
That announcement came from Netflix this week, in a tweet that has (oddly) been deleted since. The outline of the iconic speedster indicates a design in line with the recent 3D video games, which is more or less unchanged since Sonic Adventure on the Dreamcast.
Sonic’s had an interesting history on television: first cam an American cartoon series, very much a Loony Tunes-style comedy, from DiC in 1993. Shortly thereafter was an Italian-American series, which was much more serial and “serious,” influencing a line of Sonic comic books that continues to this day. DiC returned to the franchise with Sonic Underground in 1999, doubling down on science fiction and storytelling. Strangely, Sonic’s first and only Japan-produced anime series was the well-received Sonic X, 2003-2006.
Sonic Boom, his first fully computer-animated series, came back to America on Cartoon Network in 2014. It was beloved by fans, who appreciated its goofy dialog and self-referential humor, and it was easily the longest-running Sonic series at over 100 episodes. It’s remembered much better than its tie-in games of the same name, which were universally reviled by critics.
All of the Sonic cartoon series exist in their own continuities, referencing each other and the games and sometimes borrowing elements and characters from each, but never officially crossing over. Netflix’s series will probably work the same way. It’s being produced by some respected names in the cartoon industry: WildBrain (owner of a staggering amount of kids’ TV show rights) and Man of Action, producers of Ben 10, Generator Rex, and Zak Storm. The second live-action movie is scheduled to hit theaters in 2022 as well.
Source: The Verge