Sonic the Hedgehog – Corporate Pandering at its Finest

By now you’ve probably seen the downright frightening trailer for the upcoming CGI-fest Sonic the Hedgehog. Sonic created an insane amount of online backlash. Paramount Studios recently revealed the titular character’s design in the recent full length trailer and… nobody liked it. NOBODY.

I take that back. In the entirety of the internet, I’m sure there’s at least one person who fell in love with the abomination that is CGI Sonic 2019 and discovered a brand new Uncanny Valley fetish. The thing is, people saw this coming a mile away when the studio released or “leaked” a promotional silhouette of Sonic the Hedgehog a couple months ago:

Sonic the Hedgehog

If you’ve ever seen Sonic or played any of the games, it’s clear as day that even in this stylized, shadowed version of Sonic the Hedgehog is hardly like his source material.

The internet reacted in kind, with memes and jokes and “hot takes” that snowballed. Fowler came out and said they will redesign Sonic to the more familiar appearance. The film has a potential release date of November 8, 2019. That gives the animators just six months to completely overhaul the character design and plug it into the finished film.

To me, it seems like a band-aid on a compound fracture that’s broken the skin; there’s a lot more wrong with the Sonic trailer than just the visual design of Sonic.

Just… Why? And other Questions:

  • I find it hard to believe that the animators or designers never objected to the Sonic design from the outset. Odds are that the studio was well aware of how “off-brand” this Sonic was, but most likely pushed their bizarre hyper-realism until being told, en masse, that nobody wants that shit.
  • Why does it seem like Jim Carrey is just playing… Jim Carrey? It feels like Ace Ventura in the role of Robotnik. That being said, Jim Carrey looks like the best part of the film.
  • Why doesn’t Jim just legally change his name to Jim Carried instead?
  • I’d like to pour one out for all those poor animators tasked with working overtime for the next 6 months in order to “fix” this thing.
  • Why is this movie coming out now? It seems nobody even wants this film. Fans absolutely want a Sonic the Hedgehog movie, just not this one.
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  • Fans are so up in arms that many took the time and effort to re-work stills from the trailer to more accurately represent the source material.
  • Why, why, WHY use a slow-down creepy version of Coolio’s 1995 hit Gangsta’s Paradise?
  • Word on the street is this is more of a “Dr. Robotnik” origin story, so it stands to reason that the only clip we saw in the trailer with Carrey looking like Robotnik we all know and love… does not appear until the end of the film.
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  • So from this we can deduce that the image of Carrey looking like Eggman is in the film to sell the sequel, but in the trailer here in order to sell this film. Bizarre. Surely it won’t backfire.
  • Not a single joke that was shown in the trailer is actually funny.
  • What’s the point of a hyper-realistic Sonic if he exists in a world where he can throw an imaginary ring out and teleport? How do you even begin to take an idea as simple as “Blue thing runs fast and collects rings” into a full-fledged film with character beats and heart?
  • Why not keep the original designs and do a fully animated film? Or something more like Into the Spider-Verse? What’s the need to have any “real” and human characters at all?

Sure the internet is known for overreacting to everything, but this trailer got literally everything wrong. Some people online have speculated that this was an elaborate PR stunt in order to drum up interest and talk.

As they say, there’s no such thing as bad publicity. Paramount has millions of eyes watching Sonic now. They’re eager and curious about what is for sure to be a mediocre film at best.

Watch the trailer for Sonic the Hedgehog (2019)
See Also
The 2019 Oscar Nominations: Analysis, Part One