Time for another review of IDW’s Sonic the Hedgehog ongoing comic series! Same as last time, this one is brought to us by writer Ian Flynn, and with art by Adam Bryce Thomas and Mauro Fonseca. This one picks up from the excellent milestone blowout issue #50, showing us the continued confrontation between Sonic (and friends) and Eggman after their previous battles moments before. So grab yourself a chili dog as we check out how this issue fared.
The plot of this issue is pretty standard Sonic stuff – now that the mutual enemies have been defeated, the supersonic hedgehog is trying to get out of Eggman’s massive metal city to fight another day. Unfortunately, Eggman is doing his best to take advantage of the situation, making it hard for the heroes to make their escape. It’s fun, run-of-the-mill Sonic stuff. Feels almost like the final stretch of an endgame level in one of the games, making the escape after taking out a major boss. In that aspect, I’d say the issue really shines and succeeds in bringing the excitement.
The issue does end on another cliffhanger, meaning this arc will be running a bit longer than one might initially think (at the very least one more issue). I have some mixed feelings on this. With the Imposter Syndrome mini-series essentially being required reading to even understand what’s going on here, I worry that any more issues in this saga might make it feel like it’s starting to drag on a bit longer than necessary. There have been some pacing issues in this comic before, with stories feeling like they’re taking a bit too much time to tell, but the end result almost always tends to be enjoyable regardless, so hopefully the same is true here.
On a more positive note, characterization is still excellent as one would expect, with Flynn bringing his usual A-Game with character writing being front and centre. No new ground is really tread here, just the characters we know being their best selves, and that’s not a complaint in the slightest. Flynn’s Sonic cast always feels spot on and downright fun to read, and I’m running out of new ways to say that by now.
The art is arguably just as good as #50, with Adam Bryce Thomas handling a chunk of it and bringing his great sense of scene framing and panel layouts. Thomas has a great handle on making the characters look and feel expressive, always keeping them in interesting poses or angles. Mauro Fonseca’s art stands shoulder to shoulder here too, with a really great sense of fluidity to the motion of the characters, which I really enjoy. Its very manga-like in how it tries to lead your eye across the page, and I really appreciate that degree of technique in sequential artwork. It’s a vital skill, especially in action sequences for books like this.
Sonic the Hedgehog #51 is another good read in the series. While I do have some misgivings about potential pacing issues, I think it’ll ultimately not be a problem. This is a team that I trust to deliver a quality product, and they have rarely let me down in that regard. It’s always fun to watch Flynn just do his thing – his grasp on these characters always leave a high standard of quality to live up to. With some really great artwork to keep your eyes invested, this is another good one to pick up, but if you’re an ongoing reader already, well… you already know you want it.
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