Dark Enerjak, or just Enerjak, is a character that appears in the Sonic the Hedgehog comic book series and its spin-offs. He was the alternate version of Enerjak from Dark Mobius. In this zone, the evil spirit of Enerjak laid waste to the world by corrupting the Guardian, Knuckles the Echidna while he controlled vast quantities of Chaos energy as Chaos Knuckles, eventually possessing him. Later, after Knuckles was defeated by his daughter Jani-Ca, she became an incarnation of Dark Enerjak, albeit a benevolent one.
The Knuckles Enerjak of Dark Mobius retains the same basic design elements (golden armour with a faceplate), but unlike the other two, his design features lots of black in addition to the red and gold, rather than the bright blue of the previous incarnations. He sports gold and black bands on his dreadlocks and massive gold claws on the backs of his hands; he also wears a large cape (black with red interior). Additionally, this design features robotic elements: there are cables running to his arms and within his dreadlocks, and his right eye appears to be mechanical, surrounded by an Eye of Horus-like design in red.
Jani-Jak had a much softer design, retaining some gold but mainly consisting of white and lavender colors. The headgear had an Egyptian-like headdress with a pointed top, from which the faceplate could be removed. She wore a white skirt and wrapped sandals. Another interesting feature is that she no longer seems to need her glasses, as they appeared to simply vanish when she transformed. Her dreadlocks have gold bands near the end, and each is adorned with a dangling bead.
The history of Enerjak’s previous incarnations was most likely largely the same as that of his Mobius Prime counterpart. The point at which things differed was in the modern age during Chaos Knuckles’ attempt to reunify the Dark Legion with the citizens of Echidnaopolis. In this reality, there was no Lara-Su from an alternate future to try to save Knuckles. Regardless, Knuckles jumped in front of an attack on Dimitri and survived because of his powers, similar to his Prime counterpart. However, this version of Knuckles thought differently about these events and began to walk a dark path.
Possession of Knuckles the Echidna
The reunification meeting between Dimtri, the High Council of Echidnaopolis, and the Mitre went well, but in the aftermath of the assassination attempt, Knuckles felt using his "death" as a point of debate indicated the wrong people were in charge, and that he was better suited to making necessary changes. Knuckles eventually took over the Dark Legion and absolved the High Council to forcefully unify everyone, even adopting cybernetics to show his sincerity of closing the gap. However Knuckles found his allies increasingly at odds with these decisions, thinking they were just jealous instead of realizing they feared Knuckles’ power was affecting his judgement. As he found his own friends and family opposing him even after he killed Dr. Eggman and began leading the Dark Legion to “set things right across Mobius”, Knuckles resolved to treat them as obstacles if they still would not relent.
In time, even Julie-Su left Knuckles, as she had become pregnant, and did so to protect their unborn child from his growing madness. Despite all his power, Knuckles was unaware she had been with child, making him deeply hurt & confused over her departure. With facing a heightened resistance though, Knuckles decided he would search for Julie-Su after the situation was controlled.
As his efforts to bring order to Mobius took its toll over the years, Knuckles would rest to strengthen his second-sight. Remington tried using this to kill Knuckles with a bomb in his chambers, however, the explosion did nothing but make Knuckles realize he was on his own. His family deserted him, his friends had become his enemies, and even his followers’ loyalty was in question, as he mostly fought entire armies single-handedly. By now, he believed he needed a better title than "Guardian" in order to reflect his kind of power and vision as he tried to “fix” the world. This was the final blow, as Knuckles gave into the corrupting influence of the spirit of Enerjak and embraced the title, his ego deluding him to believe that he would make it into a hero for Mobius.
Once Knuckles accepted the name of Enerjak, he spread his conquest to the rest of the world with the Dark Legion and their renamed capitol city of Nekronopolis under his command. He became so powerful that his forces’ aggressive moves were likely to threaten the sovereignty of the United Federation’s city-states within the next two years, prompting G.U.N. to launch a pre-emptive strike. While Enerjak was based in Soumerca, Operation: Night Fire began with the entirety of G.U.N.’s Navy and Air Force making an all-out assault on Angel Island. Half an hour after the operation started, Enerjak returned and though outnumbered by hundreds of warships, singlehandedly sent their fleets to the bottom of the sea in just minutes. Enerjak then headed to the Hidden Palace Zone, where he engaged Team Dark for control of the Master Emerald and easily defeated them as well. In the aftermath of Night Fire’s failure, a third of G.U.N.'s military was lost and the United Federation publicly branded the attack as unsanctioned, painting Commander Tower as a rogue agent so he would be a scapegoat and bear the brunt of the retaliation that was expected to increase. This tactic did not spare Station Square from Enerjak's retribution though, as he decimated the city for the attack.
At some point during these events, Enerjak experimented with his powers and found he could extract the very life force out of living beings as a concentrated form called a Core. With further effort he created synthetic warriors from them called Prelates, whose robotic nature and complete obedience to Enerjak made them more ideal soldiers to the point that he performed the process on everyone he could, whether they were an ally or enemy. The remains of his victims were lifeless empty husks, perfectly preserved by the magic, which he then mounted like trophies on the inner walls of his Citadel in a grotesque menagerie. This even included Dr. Eggman’s body, which Knuckles reconstructed after much trial and error.
As all of this went on, the resistance developed their own plans. While Sally Acorn looked for the Sword of Acorns and made alliances, Sonic intended to gather the Chaos Emeralds so he could go Dark Mobius and stop Knuckles head-on. Though Sonic succeeded in doing this with help from Amy Rose, Tails, and Mammoth Mogul, Enerjak proved too powerful in the battle and stole the Chaos Emeralds so his power would remain unrivaled. Knuckles soundly crushed his opponents, including Super Sonic, and made him another victim by extracting his Core.
With this turn of events, very little resistance remained besides the Dark Freedom Fighters lead by Julie-Su and Lara-Su. Eventually, Enerjak removed even Julie-Su’s Core once she was captured during a raid, and Lara-Su began her search for the Sword of Acorns. This caused Enerjak to sink Downunda after his Prelates failed to stop Nack the Weasel from retrieving it, either because he knew the Sword was on the continent, or the Freedom Fighters' plan to drain his powers with the blade.
The Silver Saga
Having conquered the world, Enerjak resorted to his Prelates combating the Freedom Fighters for amusement, but as time passed he desired new challenges to keep his interest, and sent Prelates into other realities to scout and locate ones that would prove entertaining for conquest. When Prelate-V returned from 3437 P.X.E., it was followed back by Silver the Hedgehog who got Enerjak’s immediate attention, as he observed Silver fighting for his life and was intrigued by the hedgehog's psychokinetic abilities while he extracted Remington’s Core. Once the hedgehog met up with the remaining resistance members, he became even more enthralled in Silver's unique abilities and his story of coming from the future, spurring Enerjak to finally rid himself of the Freedom Fighters for good.
Going to what he knew was the location of the Freedom Fighters hideout, he used his Chaos powers to destroy the building and held them in an energy field once they emerged. Silver freed them after overcoming the field, and Enerjak decided to humor his opponents' bravado by summoning the Chaotix Prelates and give the rebels a "fair fight." Since it was a "special occasion," he also summoned Prelate-JS with the core of Jani-Ca's mother, inciting his daughter’s fury. During the battle, a large piece of rubble was tossed at Enerjak, which he easily broke apart just to discover it was a distraction by Silver, who trapped Enerjak in his own psychokinetic hold. Enerjak instead dispelled the aura around him and knocked Silver to the ground with ease, telling the time traveler his arrival meant Enerjak’s final victory over the Freedom Fighters.
Enerjak continued to toy with Silver, wondering if his world had more "fun" beings like him, which enraged the young hedgehog who ripped up the top of the tower he stood upon. Enerjak recovered and then casually watched as the Freedom Fighters systematically destroyed the Prelates with Silver grabbing the released Cores, wondering why Jani-Ca still resisted him. He eventually applauded the rebels for their violent and dramatic entertainment, and then charged straight through the team, taking back Cores while adding the Freedom Fighters' to his collection one-by-one after Enerjak embedded Silver into the pavement. With only Lara-Su left, he taunted her strength and how she had attempted to go back in time to save him once, during which Silver broke loose and attempted to strike the demi-god while his attention was diverted. Delighted at the prospect of a terrific battle, Enerjak flew through the attack and charged at Silver so they could give Mobius the “flashy ending” it deserved.
As they fought, Enerjak disintegrated massive amounts of rubble thrown at him by Silver, and resumed his charge at the hedgehog, only for Silver to throw him through his own statue and off of Angel Island. Enerjak then countered by hitting Silver with the island itself from beneath, and summoned an army of Prelates which nearly overwhelmed the hedgehog if not for Jani-Ca coming to his rescue. While Jani-Ca fought the Prelates, Silver turned his attention back to Enerjak and trapped him in a psychokinetic bubble, by which he was dragged across the entire island before Silver threw him to the ground below. Annoyed, but no more injured, Enerjak reappeared behind him and threw Silver down in retaliation, mocking his lack of power to stand against him as he bombarded the time traveler in Chaos energy.
As Enerjak was about to strike the final blow, Silver changed tactics in a moment of revelation, and instead began using his psychokinesis to send Enerjak's blasts back at him, catching him off-guard with great efficacy. Enraged from the turn in the battle, Enerjak kept attacking Silver with more blasts, only to have them deflected back at him, causing incredible pain. Silver offered Enerjak the chance to still fix much of the damage he caused, however, Enerjak charged at Silver to crush him until he was suddenly stunned by Jani-Ca with the Sword of Acorns. Using the Sword’s magic, Jani-ca then recited a variant of Tikal's Prayer to drain Enerjak’s power, and in a flash of light Enerjak was reduced to a withered, old Knuckles.
Possession of Jani-Ca
The Silver Saga
Due to draining Knuckles of his omnipotent powers into herself, Jani-Ca unexpectedly became the next incarnation of Enerjak known as "Jani-Jak." With a quick test of her new powers she summoned her mother's Core, realizing she could restore everyone and rebuild Mobius. She then destroyed the Sword to prevent her father from regaining his power and offered to help Silver's world in thanks, but he declined as he still did not know how things went wrong. Jani-Ca accepted that, saying she would not be Enerjak for long, and promised as Guardian that she would not miss this opportunity to save her world. She then wished Silver luck in his quest as he departed, remaining hopeful that she could restore her father as well.
Jani-Ca now contemplated how to repair the damage to Mobius, deciding to first restore the cores’ owners, and went to the former Enerjak's Citadel. Not yet willing to forgive Knuckles or regard him as her father again, she brought him along for insight. With Knuckles guidance, she concentrated on wanting to enter, and they arrived at a throne room where she hesitantly followed his instruction to sit. Jani-Ca extended her will again and the ceiling vanished, revealing all of Enerjak’s victims.
Surveying the figures, Jani-Ca was surprised to find Dr. Eggman among them as she thought he had been vaporized, and Knuckles explained his experiments to restore Eggman since the Doctor was the first person he stole a core from. Since Knuckles never tried restoring a core to someone, she found herself unsure where to begin or even how. Seeing this, Knuckles warned she could err without mastering her powers, and suggested coaching her by example if she shared some power with him, but a look from her silenced him. Jani-Ca then heard a dark voice whispering malicious ideas in her mind, but ignored it as those thoughts led to the misery she grew up in and refused to perpetuate it, though she knew she would not be able to resist forever.
As Jani-Ca considered who to try restoring first, Knuckles suggested Julie-Su only to add that Jani-Ca would not start with her because she would not want to risk a mistake and lose her mother forever. Seething, she reluctantly agreed, but resolved not to sacrifice anyone else to his machinations when he proposed using a villain like Eggman who would not be missed. She then came upon Remington, and realized she never really knew or tried to understand him all her life. Now seeing that he had given everything to protect everyone, Jani-Ca believed Remington would have volunteered if there was a chance it could save the world and presented a Core to his body, praying he would wake up.
Enerjak shared many traits with Dimitri, though perhaps he is slightly more insane than his predecessor. Enerjak was completely confident in his abilities and domination over his Mobius; the Dark Freedom Fighters were merely playthings to keep him entertained, and he had sent his Prelates out to seek new worlds for him to conquer. Silver's arrival seemed to utterly fascinate him, and he appeared to be positively delighted at the prospect of a true challenge to his godlike power.
The Jani-Ca incarnation of Enerjak or “Jani-Jak”, seemed much more kind and good-hearted, appearing to retain Jani-Ca's personality and desire for peace. She seemed to have no particular desire to retain that form, short of restoring the world as shown when she said "I won't be Enerjak much longer." She didn't wish to rule others, either, as the other three incarnations have, simply to fix the things her father destroyed.
Powers and abilities
The abilities of an Enerjak are highly varied, all derived from the use of the Chaos Force and limited only to the imagination of the avatar. In comparison to most beings, anyone who assumes the mantle of Enerjak is very powerful. Enerjak has been shown to be capable of teleportation, telepathy, mind control, levitation, control over matter and energy at a molecular level, becoming a giant and super strength. Knuckles' version of Enerjak also utilized Chaos energy in a fashion similar to Shadow the Hedgehog's Chaos Spear attack, in a move called Thunder Arrow. Knuckles as Enerjak seemed fond of extracting his victims' Cores, a kind of concentrated life essence, leaving them lifeless husks.
These abilities make Enerjak seem somewhat similar to various super forms attained by other Mobians, though the form itself has more in common with Chaos Knuckles, a similar state of being reached by Knuckles. Like Chaos Knuckles, Enerjak is permanent so long as no extenuating circumstances—such as death or being subjected to a magical artifact or siphon device—result that drain Enerjak's powers and revert him to whomever he was before becoming Enerjak.
- In the Q&A section of Sonic the Hedgehog #211, editor Paul Kaminski revealed that Knuckles' body was inhabited by the "spirit of Enerjak" thanks to Finitevus's help, indicating that becoming Enerjak involves more than the absorption of immense amounts of Chaos energy. Dimitri's centuries long isolation and resulting madness, along with Knuckles' brainwashing and the "dark whisper" in the back of Jani-Ca's mind suggests that the host's personality is suppressed and manipulated by the spirit. This would later be confirmed by the Sonic the Hedgehog: The Complete Sonic Comic Encyclopedia.
- Enerjak is to date, the only major villain never to have been actually defeated by one of the main characters. In each instance it was circumstances and outside forces that brought the threat of Enerjak to a halt.
- Jani-Ca was the first incarnation of Enerjak shown to be female, all previously introduced incarnations being male. The fact that the persona was not limited by gender was hinted at by Dr. Finitevus, who had considered Lien-Da as a possible new Enerjak. However, as of the introduction of the Jani-Ca version, the persona seems confined to members of the echidna race.
- The two Knuckles incarnations of Enerjak (from Mobius Prime and Dark Mobius) are the fourth versions of the entity, assuming that the history of the two zones is virtually identical. The Jani-Ca version is the first known instance of a fifth Enerjak in any reality.
- A set of claws identical to those worn by Dark Enerjak were among the items in the Zone Jail area where items confiscated from various prisoners were stored when the Destructix broke in to recover their belongings in Sonic Universe #32. The claws were placed in a box labeled SU 25-28, a nod to the arc which Enerjak appeared in. As such, it is possible that a version of Enerjak from somewhere across the multiverse was among the many inmates imprisoned.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Sonic the Hedgehog: The Complete Sonic Comic Encyclopedia, "Dark Mobius"
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Sonic Universe #25, "Fractured Mirror Part One: Through the Looking Glass"
- ↑ 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 Dark Mobius - Knuckles' Descent
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Sonic Universe #26, "Fractured Mirror Part Two: Warped Reflections"
- ↑ Sonic Universe #27, "Fractured Mirror Part Three: Shattered"
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 Sonic Universe #28, "Fractured Mirror The Finale: Picking up the Pieces"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog: The Complete Sonic Comic Encyclopedia, "Enerjak"