Ever wondered what would have happened if the Super Genesis Wave hadn’t happened? This behind the scenes look will shed some light!
There is now a dedicated webspace for Lost Hedgehog Tales, and the first chapter has been uploaded. For those who are unaware, the Archie Sonic comic faced a rollercoaster of events around the #225-250 both within the comic pages and in real life. The result of these changes ranged from slight delays to reformatting to the most famous result of initiating the Super Genesis Wave that essentially reset the multiverse. Lost Hedgehog Tales is an unofficial document, being written by official head writer Ian Flynn, about the original plans for that period, and for the road all the way down to #300, as well as some specific points that need a bit more detail to cover.
The first chapter is a sort of prologue to ease us into the general changes made between #225 and #247 (and before the future issue plans became completely shelved). To summarise the points briefly;
- Foreshadowing to the Death Egg came as early as #183; the Bunker Eggman retreated to after Enerjak destroyed New Megaopolis was the site of its ongoing construction.
- He wanted the #225-275 period be about breaking up the team and watching them pull themselves back together slowly, as the heroes hadn’t been too set back before that point.
- Sally was originally to be roboticised by the end of #225, but SEGA wanted an arc for the 20th anniversary, and “Genesis” was put between #225-229 instead. There were talks of that being used as a point to reboot the comic, but that obviously didn’t happen.
- Antoine could have been outright killed off in #234 instead of badly injured for his sacrifice to be a rallying point for the team, but the fan reaction to Mecha Sally and his injuries was bigger than expected, so it was agreed that he was best left alive.
- Team Fighters were originally going to meet Hershey St. John in #237-238 to gear up for “Secret Freedom” in Sonic Universe; she would have faked her death, infiltrated Razorklaw’s Dark Egg Legion chapter, but not been able to report the fact she was alive to Geoffrey. She would have learned of Geoffrey’s alliance with Naugus from the Fighters and headed home.
- “Heroes” was originally going to be between #239-241, because the editor wanted a bigger push for the three teams (Fighters, Freedom and Secret) and to have Patrick Spaziente do a triptych cover. Parts 1 and 2 would have been about the missions of Fighters and Freedom going exceptionally well with events mysteriously happening in their favour, while part 3 would have shown how the Secret Freedom Fighters were behind said good events in those missions. Then the Olympics loomed and Archie, SEGA and McDonald’s needed a tie-in for their promotion, so this got condensed to two issue with the Secret stuff being mixed in with the Fighters and Freedom mission stories.
- #241 ended up being a mix (all in one story, “Unraveling”). Part of it was a story that was planned to be a series of 5-page back-up showing the scenes Naugus went through as he tried desperately to hold onto power. Originally, Naugus would have simply tricked Geoffrey by playing on his sympathies in his dire situation, but the editor felt that too be too weak a resolution and had him possess Geoffrey instead.
- Ian originally wanted the #242 Olympic promotion to feature a main comic tie-in story, for a small obstacle for Team Fighters to fight before getting to the “Endangered Species” arc. The Krudzu Hybrid Hydra was selected to tangle with them (having last appeared in the Free Comic Book Day 2010 issue). This didn’t pan out as the Olympic story ended up taking all the pages, so the story was transplanted into #241 to provide the other part.
- “At All Costs” was originally going to be a consecutive 2-issue story marked the beginning of the upswing to the Freedom Fighters’ plight. But then the legal settlement meant critical characters and plot points were inaccesible which nulled much of the build-up, and Archie were asked by Capcom and SEGA to do a crossover (At All Costs ended up being 2 issues either side of said crossover, and there was no upswing as the second part showed Sonic first getting to grips with the new reality).
- Ian had 4-5 months to both plan out the crossover and plot out the new universe by this point. Meshing these, and the differences between Sonic’s convuluted lore and Mega Man’s under-developed lore, was the big challenge until he recalled the Genesis Wave he’d introduced way back in “Genesis”.
But this is hardly the end of the line. With so much planned before all the shenanigans in real life happened, this is only the tip of the iceberg. I implore you to read the document fully for yourself for some insights not covered by this summary, and be on the lookout for more juicy updates as Ian hopes he can update Lost Hedgehog Tales on a fairly steady basis. Certainly something to look forward to!