The Sonic Sunday Strips Have Been Found!

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Back in the early 90’s, there was a newspaper in the UK which went by ‘The News of the World’ on a Sunday like many papers at this time they had a special supplement, this was often filled with crossword puzzles, random stories from it’s readers, a TV guide and usually, comic book shorts.

Well… Sonic had a comic series in this supplement. This comic series ran as best as we can from October 1993 – April 1995, over 70 comic strips were produced. This comic series was first brought to my attention 7 years ago, in that time many fans have found the odd one or two issues and uploaded them online. However with the magazine being a throw away thing which very few people kept, it’s become near impossible and expensive to find a complete collection.

To further complicate matters, there are absolutely no credits at all in the comic, making it very hard to pinpoint who actually worked on it. Well… through some detective work, myself and Lucky both agreed that the work was of former Sonic the Comic artist Richard Elson, with at least one other artist also being involved.

After a few emails and Facebook messages with Richard Elson, he confirmed that he was the person involved with the comic and that they were his work. He also provided some additional details such as Barrie Tomlinson wrote the scripts & Sandy James took over from when Richard left, John Burns was also the colourist for some of the strips.

Eventually we finally meet up at Sonic the Comic Con and showed him some of the issues in person. He recognised them and said that he had a large number of strips, he knew it was incomplete, but he also said that he had a large number of them.

So we managed to come to a small deal. He would loan us the comic strips, provided we scanned and uploaded them for all to see.

A few months later we met again and took ownership of the pages.

However, when we arranged them in order, as Richard had said, the series was incomplete.

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Since then, we have gone through our own issues of the series to fill in these gaps. We have also found a number of scans of the missing issues and contacted other fans who had a few of the missing pages.

We have now found all but two of these missing pages.

In the space of around a year, we have gone from a handful of scans to an almost complete and comprehensive collection of the entire comic series. With the exception of 2 pages, this comic series has now been scanned and is now available to view online.

Reading through the pages, there are a number of very interesting observations for fans of Sonic the Comic. First of all, whilst this comic was not made under the control of either Richard Burton or Deborah Tate, certain parts of Sonic’s character in STC originate from this issue. For instance, Sonic’s fear of spiders which isn’t ever explained really in STC is explained in this comic series.

Another way in which they tie is Robotniks redesign. Whilst we see the method in which he’s re-designed in STC, in the Sunday Strips the transformation occurs in the same week as the STC and Robotnik even comments on his design change in the strip.

There are however some changes between the two comics, for instance, the Sunday Strips have a greater focus on Sonic getting rings, only issue 1 of STC had such focus. Robotnik uses a lot more egg puns and Sonic sometimes speaks really fast with no spaces between his words (much more in common with the two Sonic Yearbooks).

So now for the big bit of news, the uploading of them. The pages can now be viewed online over at Tumblr, they have been uploaded in the order in which they were released, meaning it’s easy for you to navigate and read them.

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Also, we now technically have a new ‘Sonic’ to add to the list (Sega Sonic, Archie Sonic, Fleetway Sonic etc). Say hello to Sunday Sonic. What is Sunday Sonic like?

Well… Sunday Sonic is the most incompetent Sonic out of all the Sonic’s.

Sunday Sonic suffers from terrible short term memory, each week he says almost the same thing over and over again.

Sunday Sonic takes several weeks to defeat Robotnik per encounter.

In later issues, Sunday Sonic has a problem with the space time continuum, sometimes he appears in one location, then in the next strip he’s in a completely different one yet the story continues as if nothing has happened.

You can read the entire collection of comics over at tumblr. Enjoy,

More details on the comic can be found at this topic on our forums.

Whilst it’s tempting to just finish now and take all the credit for this. Huge thanks goes to SSMB member Lucky for all her hard work in scanning a large number of the issues and uploading them as well as making a lot of the contacts over the last few years. Credit should also go to Tumblr user hypermikey who uploaded a number of the missing strips too.

But huge thanks goes to Richard Elson for agreeing to let myself and Lucky take ownership of his pages and for trusting us to actually get this done, it took a while but we finally got there.

16 Comments

  1. Awesome! If these strips are anything like Sonic the Comic (and completely unlike Archie…), I predict I’m going to love them.

    And best of all, they’re based on the games, rather than the stupid Dic cartoons (even if latter strips use the AOSTH Robotnik design… stupid SoE).

      1. I’ve been wondering about this too. The UK portion of the fandom has a real disdain for Archie STH and I’ve never understood it. Yeah it has its issues but I feel they’ve done a good job overall with what they’ve been given to work with. That being said the artwork actually seems a bit similar to the Archie style and I’m wondering if they had a few artists work lowkey on them.

        1. Because it took over the comic portion of the series and was likely a big reason the UK comics were cancelled since SEGA likely played favorites and leaned more preferably to what Archie was releasing.

          1. The reasons for why the comic ended are wrong.

            The claims for the distain are just baseless based on one or two people not liking it.

        2. Actually I’m from the UK and love the Archie STH comics with my collection starting from issue 137 and onward to present day. I’ve collected a couple of the STC issues out here and there, but I’ve never really cared for them as I found ’em pretty dull and boring.

          1. Well that’s interesting to hear. I’m sure there’s probably quite a few American fans who care more for the STC comics than the Archie ones…I am not one of those fans, but I’m sure it’s a thing that exists.

        3. As someone who I guess is part of the UK Sonic comic community in way I actually can vouch that most of of us either love or are ok with Archie Sonic. Everyone is an individual but most of us STC fans just find it bananas that Archie Sonic managed to survive over 100 issues with shit stories before it started getting good.

          STC was only really bad for about 10 issues with some lulls here and there in the main stories.

  2. On a smaller scale, this reminds me of the effort to recover all those lost Doctor Who episodes. 😛

  3. I’ve personally never cared much for the UK Sonic comics, as I felt that I just didn’t agree with the art style, tone, or even in some cases the attitude of the series. Compared to the more lighthearted and later-on comedically epic adventures of the Archie series, when I tried jumping into the Fleetway comics (the early ones mind you) I felt like they were a little mean-spirited. Like, Sonic was portrayed as this egotistical vain jerk who only helped people when he felt like it and would sometimes go out of his way to get a cheap laugh at other people’s expense. I mean, I get that in the early days Sonic’s personality traits were still moldable for the most part in spin off media, but that just felt like a step too far for me.

    Now granted I never got much farther beyond the first few issues, so I have no idea if the things I disliked got rectified or not, but the fact is that the first few issues really set up how the majority of the series was going to work, and as such I just couldn’t find myself enjoying Sonic being depicted that way. I’m sorry to any fans who really like this series, it just doesn’t fit with my tastes. I’m sure there must be something to it that’s made it so popular among UK fans though, apart from the local accessibility factor (we American fans don’t JUST like Archie’s comics because they’re all we had), I guess I just can’t see it, nor do I have the patience to discover that the long way.

    Regardless of what comic franchise you enjoy however, it’s still nice to see the possibilities that can stem from a series as unique as Sonic be realized in various media outlets. Some forms may be favored more by Sega than others, but fans know what they like and it’s how we express that love that matters most.

  4. Pretty sure I have these stored somewhere along with my sonic annuals and summer specials.
    Preferred the uk fleetway comics over Archie comics, Elson’s and Dobbyn’s art styles were what drew me to the comic and even though they had unique characters like captn plunder and shortfuse the cybernik they never pulled away from the main characters being the central focus. The knuckles stories in the fleetway were/are still one of my favorites as he was portrayed as an intelligent loner and not as the lunkhead he is in other media like boom. The art styles did however kind of went downhill when Elson only started doing just the covers.

    I’ll be honest i probably have about 10 archie sonic comics (3 of which are the knuckles chaotix arc) but have about 4 archive boxes in my loft with all the fleetway comics from start to finish (even the reruns) even have the special wall poster comics which are a bloody pain to read and then fold back up ^_^.

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