Sonic X #3 Review by Dirk Amoeba
Probably the best cover yet, becuase of its exciting design. I love the shadowy, red-eyed Eggman in the Background. Sonic looks determined, Rouge looks smug, and Cream has a look of surprised astonishment that she only appears in one panel this issue.
"Field Trip of Doom!"
Writer: Joe Edkin
Penciler: Tim Smith III
Inkers: Jim Amash, Bob Smith 1, and Aimee Ray
Colors: Ben Hunzeker and Josh Ray
Letters: Tom Orzechowski
Editor: Mike Pellerito
Managing Editor: Victor Gorelick
Editor-In-Chief: Richard Goldwater
Sega Reps: Robert Leffler and Dyna Lopez.
Sonic, running from a couple of killer whales, tells us that he hates the beach, despite the smile on his face. Apparently, he's on some kind of mission to rescue Cream's pet Chao, Cheese, who has been kidnapped by Eggman. Along the way, he trashes badniks, even commenting that the whole thing is reminiscent of the "Green Hill days." The entire scene is alos reminiscent of the first level of Sonic Adventure, but as Eggman tells Decoe and Bocoe in private, it's a mere distraction from his real plan.
At that moment, in Sam Speed's garage, he recieves a parcel from Eggman's messenger, Bokkun. Obviously, he does not know who Bokkun is, so he accepts it. It's a new fuel injector to speed up his car and help him beat Sonic. Bokkun delivers more such gifts: a new chair for the president, a new computer for Topaz, and a humongous fruit basket for Mr. Stewart, whose name is mispelled as "Stuart." Oh well.
As Sonic rescues Cheese, Eggman's text boxes reveal to the reader that his newest robots will be powered not by Komodo Dragons, like the bots of the previous issue, but by human beings--Sonic's own friends. Humans are more vicious in battle than any other animal, Eggman insists. And all the pieces of his plan are ready: the gifts, some new robots, and a certian field trip, details on that in a moment.
When Chris arrives home from school, Sonic is pondering that his rescue of Cheese was far too easy. However, Chris interrupts with news: his class is going on a field trip to the Space Museum on Monday. Tails wants to go, despite the fact that he's not in Chris's class (or any kind of schooling for that matter), but that isn't going to stop him from happening to bump into the class there.
Monday arrives and it's time for the field trip. Stewart grabs his lunch, a fruit from the basket he received. While he contemplates the identity of the man who invited them to the field trip, a "Dr. Oeuf-Homme," we zoom in on the fruit bowl and see ie bears a familiar Eggman logo. By the way, "Oeuf-Homme" is French, and it means "Egg-Man." Isn't the Internet great?
In any case, Sonic, Tails and Amy are waiting on the steps of the Space Museum waiting for Chris, while Amy thinks to herself about her unrequited love for Sonic (this will be dealt with below). Chris's class arrives and everyone heads inside. It's a pity nobody looked over their shoulder to see that Eggman was right behind them.
While Stewart gapes at the out-of-control elementary schoolers, Eggman begins his "Machiavellian Machinations." With a crash, three mean-looking, blandly-colored robots break through a wall. The heroes spring into action: Amy with her Piko-Piko hammer, Tails with a cordless drill, and Sonic with a Star-Trek reference (it seems Edkin's taking a leaf out of Ken Penders's book). Amy smashes the robot with a hammer and Tails goes to work on another one with his drill, two acts that are imitatible acts for any kid whose dad has a tool set, but nontheless quite ineffective. Unsurprisingly, Sonic's punch to the third robot's metal casing is similarly useless.
Just to take a brief break form the summary, I'm going to relate something my sister once told me. She claimed that any trio of friends on a children's program will almost always include a main character, a best friend who is the same gender but a different race, and another firend who is the opposite gender but the same race. This is true of Danny Phantom, Lizzie McGuire, Kim Possible, Doug, Hey Arnold (kind of), and even Pokémon (although Brock's ethnicity is debatable). Well, the same is true of Sonic, Tails and Amy.
What's the point of this little discourse, you ask? How is it relevant? Actually it's really not, except to provide a segway, because Sam Speed and his cronies, Dawn and Paul fit the same formula. I know, kind of pointless, but it's what popped into my mind, and if I want to interrupt the summary with it, then I shall. In any case, Sam receives news of the situation at the museum. Against Dawn and Paul's urging, Sam rushes away in his car, equipped with the new and untested fuel injector. After all, his nephew's life is at stake.
At that moment, Chris is cowering under some kind of space pod while Amy confronts a robot who is buzz-sawing the floor. "Bad robot," she says, "I do not yield the floor to you." As far as puns go, that's not bad, but it doens't help much because the cracking floor opens. Amy, Chris, the robot and the space pod fall through to the floor below. Tails, who is losing the fight against one of the robots, tosses a ring to Sonic, who then blows a doughnut hole in the robot that Tails was fighting. That's one down.
While Tails goes down the hole in the floor to assist Chris and Amty, Sonic sees that one of the robots has accosted Danny and Francine. Apparently, this robot can transform, because it becomes a vehicle of some type, with the poorly-drawn children trapped inside. The vechicle leaves the museum, creating another hole in the wall (that's two in the wall and one in the floor, for those keeping count). Sonic rushes after them, but at that moment Sam Speed arrives and also gives chase.
Oh, by the way, Chris's friends Danny and Francis also fit that formula mentioned four paragraphs ago.
Well, the chase apparently goes on until they reach the outskirts of Station Square, where our heroes find themselves in a cliche setting: a curving road on a cliff. Sam's fuel injector does indeed make him slightly faster than Sonic, but it also speeds him up so mcuh that he can't take the curve of the road and he goes off the cliff into the ocean. Luckily, he hads a parachute, so Sonic doens't worry too much about him and goes after the two kids instead.
Then Eggman pushes another button. Sam (who landed safely in the water) is suddenly wrapped in a metallic cable coming form his car (the result of the fuel injector, obviously). The president finds himself in a similar situation, subbing his new chair for the car. Stewart's cables are apparently coming from the fruit he took from the basket (good thing for Eggman he chose that particular fruit out of the dozens in the basket) and Topaz is attacked similarly by her new computer. Lastly, Chris captured by the space pod (remember that thing?) as Amy and Tails battle the robot, oblivious to the problem.
Meanwhile, Sonic uses the ring Tails threw him earlier (which apparently has some "juice" left in it, to use a SatAM-ish term) and he catches up with the car-ish robot, attacking it and dragging the kids to safety.
As Chris is dragged into the space pod, Tails and Amy finish off the final robot. Or so they thought. They turn around, and a very big, well-armed robot is targeting them. Perfect time to cut away to Sonic, outside the museum trying to see if everyone's okay. But Chris and Stewart (spelled right this time) are still inside. As Sonic goes in, Tails and Amy are running out-- away from the big robot. the robot targets Sonic, who gets ready to trash the bot. Little does he know that Chris is inside the "Lunarbot," apaprently powering it. As Eggman says, this plan can't fail. To be continued.
This issue marks the second time in that many months that Joe Edkin has used the adjective "Machiavellian" to describe Eggman. I seriously doubt that most of the kids in the target audience know much about Niccolň Machiavelli. And no, I'm not going to explain either. Who do you think this is, Dan Drazen or something?
The Rose Knows
I think there's a slight error in Amy's characterization with regards to her love for Sonic. In this story, she seems to think that Sonic doesn't share her romantic feelings. Now, whether or not he does is a topic of debate among fans, but I won't get into that. But what's clear in both the Sega games and the Sonic X anime is that Amy honestly believes that Sonic loves her back. She even refers to herself as his official girlfriend.
Those Green Hill Days
Like issue 1, this issue features references to the video games. In fact, it makes an effort to point out that not only did the Sonic Adventure games occur in this continuity, but there's the earlier games that happened too, something that was merely hinted at in the anime. It's good to see that happening, and apparently it's going to pop up more in the future, if Joe's posts at the Mobius Forum are any indication.
Seriously, Where's my Bagel?
On the Cream/Cheese front, we still get very little of the duo in this series. Now, recall that even when this was only to be a four-issue series, Mike indicated that we'd be getitng our Cream fix in Sonic X. But the third issue has come and gone and despite being featured on the cover, Cream is practically non-present in the series. Granted, Cheese did perfom a role in the opening of this story, and the story in issues 5-6 will feature Chao heavily, so we can expect to see Cream there, but you have to wonder why we were promised Cream back when the miniseries was announced even though she really hasn't been featured a lot.
Smith, Smith, Smith
As I said in the last review, Smith has declined significantly. Over a period of three months, his art quality has gone form a tentative thumbs up to a definite thumbs down. Quite simply, a lot of the stuff is lazily drawn. I still think there's talent, but no effort.
All in all, this issue was just a little bit boring. Maybe that's because it's just the setup for a conclusion that will occur next issue, so it deserves a little slack for that reason. It seems like the entire purpose was to set up the pieces to be played with next isue.
Overall Score: 7.5/10
A fairly good first act, but it's getitng to the point where the art quality is crippling my ability to take it seriosuly. Some pretty original concepts are introduced, but it's somewhat reminiscent of "roboticization" form SatAM and Archie-StH.
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