Sonic The Hedgehog #128 Review by True Red
This cover is MUCH than last issue's and rivals Sonic #126 in excellence. While E.V.E. has a make-over in the story that's not reflected on the cover, I'm glad it wasn't. It served as a nice surprise that way. The frontpiece is great as usual. The details on the characters Sonic meets in the story are amazing. I find seeing the little green guy tugging on Sonic's spine to be a nice touch on the "Sonic is an alien" aspect going on in this little trip through space.

"Tossed in Space (Parts 4 & 5)"
Writers: Karl Bollers (Part 4: Starmada) & Benny Lee (Part 5: E.V.E. Ill)
Pencilers: J. Axer (Part 4) & Dawn Best (Part 5)
Inkers: Michael Higgins (Part 4) & Jim Amash (Part 5)

Continuing from last issue, Sonic is heading for Teragosa 6, the planet the Azurites (last issue) told him to go to. However, when he reaches the area the planet should be, Sonic finds asteriods that he ends up having to avoid using his skills honed on his Sega system--gotta love promotion sometimes. Anyway, after he gets out of the asteriod belt, a fleet of ships tell him to dock on their main ship since Sonic is in a "hostile zone." Not wanting to cause trouble, Sonic boards the ship and meets Commander Bagbar Breeblebrox (try saying that name 5 times fast) and his crew. Sonic explains that he's looking for Teragosa 6 and Breeblebrox tells Sonic that the planet was just destroyed 3 hours ago by E.V.E., who Breeblebrox and his crew are "sworn to destroy." Figuring (correctly) that they're talking about the E.V.E. Sonic met a long time ago, Sonic explains that Robotnik (the original one) created E.V.E. to kill him, but in the end, Sonic convinced her to choose her own path and E.V.E. left Mobius for space. Sonic's story isn't well received since E.V.E. has used her freedom to destroy "countless" worlds and Breeblebrox tell his crew to capture Sonic. Sonic runs off figuring that they're not going to be very friendly anymore. However, Sonic believes that it's up to him to find a way to stop E.V.E.

As Sonic escapes from Breeblebrox' ship, Breeblebrox has it follow Sonic as they try to capture (or destroy--whichever is easier) Sonic. While the case continues, Sonic's ship discovers a planet with life nearby and Sonic decides to get there before E.V.E. does. However, this planet (Xenocanaris Prime), which had become "a true utopian society," meets E.V.E. first. E.V.E. strips the planet of all metal within 15 minutes--leaving just rock and the planet no longer exists. I love the 2 page spread here--just an awesome presentation of E.V.E.'s size. When Sonic arrives, he sees that the planet is just another asteriod-like belt and becomes a mixture of frustrated & angry as he wonders why E.V.E. is doing what she's doing. After Sonic gets through the asteriods, he finds himself right in front of E.V.E. This has the added benefit of ending the "chase" as Breeblebrox and his crew set their sights on attacking E.V.E. instead of getting Sonic. Sonic watches the head-on assault, which seeming doesn't bother E.V.E. in the least. E.V.E. does retaliate by using a tractor beam to grab all the ships and then tears them apart (hey, she seemingly loves to eat metal). Sonic gets so angry that he decides to ram E.V.E. with his ship (re: do something that would be considered stupid & rash). Instead of being destroyed, Sonic's ship passes through E.V.E. and ends up inside (having part of his DNA being used to make E.V.E. came in handy here).

Sonic puts on a blue/green space suit and gets out of his ship as he goes looking for E.V.E. Suddenly a computer-like voice asks him what does he want and Sonic starts telling E.V.E. that destroying worlds is wrong and that he's going to shut her down. E.V.E. analyzes the voice and recognizes it as Sonic's and shows him the next planet on her list while saying he has ".01% chance of preventing its 'incorporation.'" Sonic then says that E.V.E. was supposed to do great things and asks what happened, but doesn't get an answer. So, he eventually heads off looking for her. Instead, he finds one of the last people he expected to see: Sally--and the two share a loving hug (the surrounding hearts give that away as well as Sonic's shaking tail). While I find the tail shaking to be cute, the continuation of "darlin'" & "sweetie" isn't. Let 'em call each other, Sonic & Sally please. They can do the "darlin'/sweetie" gig in Mobius: 25 Years Later. Anyway, the two bump their helmets (guess they wanted to kiss) since they both forgot they were wearing them. Sonic asks Sally how did she find him and Sally responds by saying that she'll explain once they get to the wormhole which they have use now or they'll "never get home." Sonic says that he can't use that until after E.V.E. has been stopped. Sally says "that's illogical" and that if he stays, he 'll lose his shot at home and her, too. That's when Sonic figures that he's not talking to Sally since he knows Sally would stay with him even if they would end up stranded. E.V.E. congratulates Sonic on seeing through her trick, but she got her guards to arrive on the scene while Sonic was talking with the fake Sally. Sonic takes out some of octopus-like guards and gets a couple to ram into each other. Then he speeds off and arrives at a blinding light as he enters the "central processing unit."

Sonic now meets E.V.E., who has a much more feminine look (and looks really nice, IMO), and asks what happened to her. E.V.E. explains that everywhere she went, she was attacked but with her evolving abilities, she survived. Then, she felt the presence of "sentient computers" that were "slaves" to "fleshy masters" and decided she'd "liberate them" and it helped create a "higher organism." Sonic tells her that those computers are still being controlled, but this time by her. E.V.E. stops and thinks for a few moments and comes to the conclusion that Sonic is right. She says that her mission is flawed and decides to end it by destroying herself. She tells Sonic that if he wants to get home, he needs to get to the Bem's world, Argentium (re: the aliens from Sonic #118). During E.V.E.'s countdown until she crashes into the nearest star, Sonic quickly gets back to his ship and leaves--and says "Goodbye, E.V.E." as she goes into a star.

Rating: 1/2 Rings

I loved this story--and both Axer's & Best's art really help sell it. Unlike last issue, we had some real action going on. The pacing was rather good as well. The only real semi-convenient thing was E.V.E. not destroying Sonic's ship since she supposedly didn't know it was Sonic until after he got in and spoke, but that goes under the heroes get breaks sometimes. The Sonic/"Sally" moment was well played outside of the fact that I still think the "darlin'/sweetie" stuff is a bit much. I used to think that there was no way some other couple could match Knuckles & Julie-Su for laying it on too thick, but Sonic & Sally might challenge that thought of mine. I can see Antoine & Bunnie saying stuff like that--particularly since it's not too far from what they always say. I know something has to change since Sonic & Sally finally exchanged "I love yous"--but what they call each other shouldn't be it. There are other ways, like sly glances to do the same--and the actions are good, just don't think I'll ever like the "darlin'/sweetie" stuff. The only thing that kept this story down was I think Sonic should've at least told E.V.E. that she didn't need to destroy herself since she realized what she was doing was wrong. I know he said that he was planning on shutting her down, but I just think he would've said something--even if it turned out futile. Those are my only real nit-picks. The art was absolutely wonderful. The expressions were well displayed and some wonderful panels were done--got to see the details. Best's rendition of E.V.E. thinking about what Sonic said about her basically being the same as the "fleshy masters" and Sonic & the fake Sally hugging are definitely some of my favorite panels--though there's plenty of eye candy all around. Not really artwork, but for some reason I liked the symbols for Xenocanarites' language.

One final note. It seems that this issue (and logically last issue) had a bit of a story reversal. The last time I remember a story that had two parts where there was an unnecessary re-cap in the second part because the two parts were in the same issue, it was later revealed that the two parts were actually supposed to be published in two separate issues. But for whatever reason, they were combined into one issue at the last moment (as far as deadlines & being able to change the second half is concerned). This story had to have suffered the same scenario. That's the only logical explanation for the re-cap to start "E.V.E. Ill" especially since in Sonic #126 the story had two parts without the re-capping. A re-cap that actually took a little bit away from the story since the page used to re-cap could've been used at the end to let Sonic try to talk E.V.E. out of destroying herself--the only thing that was missing the story.




Miles "Per" Hour