- Not to be confused with The Adventures of SONIC the Hedgehog illustrated stories. For other titles with "Adventures," see Adventures
Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog
Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, often abbreviated as AoStH, is an American animated television series loosely based on the Sonic the Hedgehog series. The show was first broadcasted on 6 September 1993, and aired on syndication until 3 December 1993. It follows the escapades of Sonic the Hedgehog and his comrade Miles "Tails" Prower as they attempt to stop the evil Dr. Ivo Robotnik and his array of vicious robots from taking over the planet Mobius. It marks the first televised cartoon to be based on the Sonic franchise.
Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog was created by DiC Entertainment, which produced a total of sixty-five episodes for its first season, and syndicated by Bohbot Entertainment, now 41 Entertainment. The first episode was "Best Hedgehog" (which was the thirteenth episode in production order) and the last was "Hero of the Year" (which was the sixtieth in production order). DiC ceased production on Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog to spend more time on its darker interpretation, entitled Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM), a series launched on ABC's Saturday morning line-up.
After the original airing, DiC created one more episode in the winter of 1996, "Sonic Christmas Blast," which has features from Sonic the Hedgehog such as Sally in a non-speaking cameo, and has Sonic and Tails visiting Robotropolis, which is different from SatAM because it now has a human population and the name is pronounced differently, being "robot-tropolis" rather than "robo-tropolis."
The letters page of issue #41 of the Sonic the Hedgehog comic book promotes the special as "An X-Tremely Sonic Christmas," suggesting that it was originally intended to promote the, eventually cancelled, Sega Saturn game, Sonic X-treme. Due to this, the special's name was changed to match another game's name, Sonic 3D Blast.
Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog is a fast-paced cartoon with much slapstick humor, including lots of cartoon violence and dizzy stars, akin to such shows as Animaniacs or Tiny Toon Adventures. Director Kent Butterworth recruited many artists that worked for Nickelodeon's The Ren & Stimpy Show, at a time when the show's production was handed to the network's in-house animation studio.
The series features very few recurring characters, usually just Sonic, Tails, Robotnik and his two hench-bots Scratch and Grounder, although a third robot, Coconuts, also appears sometimes. However, there are many occasional minor characters and robots who appear. The plots loosely follow the storyline of the video game series, although the franchise was relatively new during that time, and lacks much plot or character development, which was filled in by the show's writers. The end of each regular episode contains a short PSA segment titled "Sonic Says" or "Sonic Seys."
- For a full list of the characters in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, see here.
Voice cast (English version)
The opening theme of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog is an instrumental piece of music written by Clark Gassman. The tune borrows from the main theme of the original Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog 2, composed by Masato Nakamura. Some refrains are based on certain pieces of classical music, including "Flight of the Bumblebee" by Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, and "In the Hall of the Mountain King" by Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg. The background music of the series was composed by Reed Robbins and Mark Simon.
A different version of the show's theme song appeared in the Italian and French versions. It was sung by Cristina D'Avena in Italian and Alexis Tomassian in French. Also, the Persian dub has a song based on the instrumental of "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" by Katy Perry, albeit with original lyrics. The Arabic version has a revamped version of Catty's Sonic Song.
Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog was most recently shown weekdays at 8:00 a.m. Central Time on Toon Disney in the United States. Robotnik was also the featured villain occasionally on the "Chillin' with the Villains" marathon block, even being featured in their commercials. In the United Kingdom, AoStH was originally shown on Channel 4 until the show's end; recently it was also shown on the satellite channel POP, until 17 April 2006 when it was replaced with Sonic Underground. It was shown on that channel as part of a "Sonic Week". This TV subsequently aired the first thirteen episodes of the show from 2010 to 2011. As of 2015, Netflix has the first twenty episodes available, with the entire series available on CBS All Access. It also aired on Starz (specifically Starz Kids & Family) along with Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM) and Sonic Underground. The series also aired outside the United States in countries such as Latin America, Spain, Saudi Arabia etc. The cartoon aired in the Republic of Ireland on RTÉ Two from 12 September to December 1994.
There were six VHS tapes released in the US by Buena Vista Home Video with two episodes each per tape. In the UK, there were about ten tapes released; Volumes 1 to 6 (except Volume 5 which is Quest for the Chaos Emeralds, a four part-series edited without the title cards) had three episodes per tape, "High Stakes Sonic"/"Sonic Breakout" and "Momma Robotnik's Birthday" tapes had two episodes each. Also there was a bumper tape released that was roughly three hours long. None of the UK videos had the Sonic Says segments included except the episode "High Stakes Sonic". One of the UK videos had four different versions. All of these four had the episode "Sonic Breakout" in it. However, in one the other episode was "High Stakes Sonic". In another it was "Slowwww Going" and the final version had all three of these episodes. Also there was a tape with just the "Sonic Breakout" episode.
Shout! Factory has released two DVD sets of the series in the US, each with twenty two episodes in chronological order. The remaining episodes, as well as the "Sonic Christmas Blast" special, were released in a third and final volume (also in chronological order) that is only available for purchase on Shout! Factory's website.
In the UK, the show was released in its entirety by Delta Home Video, who also released the Sonic the Hedgehog television series and Sonic Underground in the UK, as one boxset with eight discs on 11 June 2007.
Invisible Pictures, the successor-in-interest to Bohbot Entertainment, released a complete series box set on DVD in 2019.
In 2021, Discotek Media released an SD Blu-ray set of the complete series with bonus features including episode commentaries, the original pitch pilot, "Sonic Christmas Blast", and the rushes of the first episode.
Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog was met with mixed reviews. Randy Miller III of DVDTalk said, "While it's obvious that The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog won't ever be mentioned in the same sentence with Disney, Pixar or Studio Ghibli (except for this one), there's enough goofy fun here to entertain any resident of the 16-bit gaming era." Michael Rubino of Verdict criticized the show for being dated, contrived, and bloated with chili dog jokes.
Common Sense Media gave the series an overall rating of 3 out of 5 and noted that while the show's pace is "frantic," that the "series emphasizes positive themes for kids about personal safety and interpersonal relationships."
- In this series, there are references to four Sonic games, these being: Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (8-bit) and Sonic the Hedgehog Spinball. These references include the Zones of the games, Badniks, Chaos Emeralds, Rings and the Special Stages. The main characters also appear in Sonic the Hedgehog 2, except for Scratch, who was inspired by a the Clucker Badnik from the game.
- Most of the villains in the first episode of the show later appeared in the game Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine, a reskin of the Sega Mega Drive title Puyo Puyo made by adapting the designs and visual style of the show due to the its popularity at the time.
- This was the only version of the American cartoons where Robotnik was referred to as "Eggman" in an episode, keeping with the egg-themed insults used by both Sonic and Tails. Many of his inventions were egg themed, and eggs are repeatedly mentioned to be his favorite food.
- The episode "Tails' Tale" is the only time where Tails reveals his full name to be "Miles Prower." In "Tails' New Home," however, he does state that his given name is Miles and goes on to say that he dislikes it.
- This was the only animated incarnation until Sonic X to use music from the Sonic video games in any form. The only piece that was constantly reused was the classic title theme from Sonic the Hedgehog.
- In the episode The Magic Hassle, sound effects from the game Super Mario Bros. can be heard as Robotnik uses a computer. The sound effects are heard again in Attack in Pinball Fortress.
- In Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, the tips that Sonic is shown giving during the loading screens are entitled Sonic Says, presumably a call back to the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog.
- Due to poor translation issues, the Hispanic American dub of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog accidentally made Tails into a female character, confusing many children in Latin America. Also, the Latin American translation include character renames: Tails for "Colitas" (Spanish for "Little Tails"), with his full name being "Vivi," and Dr. Robotnik for "Dr. Mostachón" (Spanish for "Dr. Big Moustache"), mistakes carried onto SatAM's dub. None of the these changes are present in the Spanish (Spain) version.
- Sonic had two birthdays in this show, once in "Tails Prevails" and another in "Robotnikland."
- The Sonic Says segments were never shown on original UK airings.
- Grounder and Coconuts were based upon the identically-named enemy Badniks in Sonic the Hedgehog 2, while Scratch was loosely based on the enemy Clucker from the same game.
- One episode was adapted for the Sonic the Hedgehog comic books published by Archie Comics, specifically "Pseudo Sonic" in Sonic the Hedgehog #9.
- A pilot for Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog was made, but never aired on television. Some scenes from the pilot were recut and worked into the actual episodes. The scene of Robotnik attempting to crush Sonic on the highway was used for the ending credits, while several other scenes were used in "Magnificent Sonic".
- According to the preproduction of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog, the former takes place before the latter. In the preproduction pages, Sonic states "Truth is, this whole series takes place before all that. It's just me and Tails wanderin' the country and Robotnik is only on verge of taking Robotropolis." Despite this, the shows are regarded as separate continuities by most sources.
- This was the only Sonic TV show to have a theme song without lyrics until Sonic Boom.
- Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic X are the only Sonic TV shows to recycle themes from the Sonic the Hedgehog video game series. In the former's case, several remixes of the title screen from Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) are used.
- Some of the show's background music would be recycled for another DiC production, "Superhuman Samurai Syber Squad," in 1994.
- SONIC O ΣΚΑΤΖΟΧΟΙΡΟΣ. Smile TV. Archived from the original on 25 October 2013.
- Andalas Televisi (2013). Retrieved on 20 February 2018.
- Lowry, Brian (21 March 1993). ‘Sonic’ is the top hog on DIC toon slate. Variety. Retrieved on 28 January 2021.
- Komoworski, Thad (20 January 2018). "Chapter 6: Don't Whiz on the Hand That Feeds You". Sick Little Monkeys: The Unauthorized Ren & Stimpy Story. BearManor Media. pp. 201. ISBN 978-1-62933-182-9. "Kricfalusi may have had many loyalists; but he had no work for them, and they all soon found themselves back at DIC, working for Kent Butterworth on The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. Said Butterworth: “He called me and I was able to hire some of his artists (who did not follow Bob Camp).”"
- RTÉ Guide, 9–15 September 1994 edition and subsequent dates
- Miller III, Randy (17 July 2007). The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog: Volume 1. DVDtalk. Retrieved on 16 January 2019.
- Rubino, Michael (8 August 2007). The Adventures Of Sonic The Hedgehog. DVD Verdict. Archived from the original on 23 May 2012.
- Ashby, Emily. The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. Common Sense Media. Retrieved on 16 January 2019.
- at 41 Entertainment