Back once again with another issue of IDW’s Sonic The Hedgehog: Imposter Syndrome, written by Ian Flynn and drawn by Thomas Rothlisberger. I’ve been waiting patiently and excitedly for this one, so let’s take a look at what we got here.
To start us out, the story is simple, but effective. We continue on from last time, with Dr. Starline testing his newest creations, Surge the Tenrec and Kitsunami on a mission to take over another one of Eggman’s bases. More accurately I suppose, he’s really testing them under the guise of furthering his plan to rule the world and topple Dr. Eggman himself. A lot of it is just a vehicle for action and character moments, and it’s not super interested in getting anywhere faster than it needs to be. Leaving me wanting for more is a good thing here, since it means everything is being paced out just right, if I know Flynn’s work as well as I think I do. It’s a simple issue that moves things along steadily, something Flynn is well known for.
The real good stuff here, however, is the character work. As usual, Flynn is a master of fleshing out characters, especially when he’s given free rein with his own creations like this. Surge and Kit are supremely fun characters — they act as great mirrors to Sonic and Tails themselves without feeling like carbon copies of the originals (or even carbon copies of past Sonic doppelgangers). It’s a hard balance to hit to be sure, but Flynn does a great job showing their personalities off, as well as showing they’re not nearly as foolish or one-note as their creator thinks them to be. Honestly, they’re just a blast to read, and I can’t wait for them to interact with the wider cast as a whole.
The IDW comics have definitely been lacking in the wide array of villains that the former Archie canon had, and a dark, troublemaking doppelganger is something that you can get a lot of stories out of. With these two likely to break away from Starline at some point, it’s good to know they already have this much on-page charisma with each other before they’ve even had a first meeting with anybody else. That’s a good sign that these two will go on to be a part of some pretty good stories in the franchise’s future. With how they’re now searching for deeper answers to their existence, I have high hopes for the two’s development over time, and I honestly think they’re going to go down as fan favorites for years to come should they last.
The artwork in this issue is fantastic. Rothlisberger does a great job of making the characters’ personalities and subtleties shine through his expressive movement and facial features. You can always tell what a character is thinking just by looking at them, a vital aspect of Sonic character design and storytelling. Watching the characters move is just as fun as hearing them talk, and further highlights just how strongly characterized everybody is here.
Overall, I really dug this one, just like I did the first. The characters are fun to read and are still just as likeable as before, perhaps even more so. The plot is nothing too special quite yet, but the teaser for next time seems to be ready to kick things up a notch, and the artwork is a thoroughly expressive and fun experience. I get the feeling that there’s going to be plenty of twists and turns before this mini-series is over, and I can’t wait for it.
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