Knuckles the Echidna (ナックルズ・ザ・エキドゥナ Nakkurusu za Ekiduna?) is the tritagonist in Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie. He is an anthropomorphic echidna and is known as lonely traveler and treasure hunter. He is also a long-time friend of Sonic the Hedgehog and Tails.
The animated movie incarnation of Knuckles the Echidna does have many similar character features for the most part comparing to his game counterpart, including long red quills behind his head, long soft nose and white crescent symbol on his chest. However, colors on his shoes are seem to be altered comparing to his game counterpart, as the red and yellow colors have switched their places on shoes and gray buckles are somewhat smaller.
However, unlike most other incarnations, he is known to wearing a brown cowboy hat most of the time. The hat has blue line around with yellow rounds with red five-pointed stars on them. Knuckles is also seen to carry on light-colored travel bag and keeping blue sun-glasses on mostly for the harder sun lighting.
He is first seen when Sonic and Tails enter the Land of Darkness. When he meets up with Sonic and Tails, they say that it's been a while since they saw him, indicating that they had previously met each other. He helps them escape from Metal Robotnik and they head off to stop the generator.
Knuckles is then seen following Tails back to Land of the Sky where he helps repair the Tornado, something that Knuckles isn't seen doing in a any other cartoons or comics. Later when he and Tails arrive at the North Pole Knuckles saves Sara from a great fall. She then thanks him and kisses him causing Knuckles to be frozen.
A few minutes later after seeing Hyper Metal Sonic defeating Sonic, the three saw the lava approaching the iceberg then Tails tells Knuckles to stop the magma. Knuckles hesitates then Sara says: "Would you try it for me brave man?" and gives him a kiss. Knuckles blushes then drills two holes in the lava causing it to divert. Unfortunately his hat catches on fire.
Afterwards, during the fight between Hyper Metal Sonic, and the real Sonic, he is seen making more holes in the ground, and when he rises he sees the two coming towards him and hyper speed, which causes him to submerge and rise up for a short while which we as the fans see it as a Whack-A-Mole game. At one point during this scene Sonic steps on his head leaving a huge bump, making Knuckles very angry and giving Sonic the thumbs down sign, indicating he will get him back for hurting him.
During the last pinnacle of the fight, Metal Sonic falls into the magma and Sonic jumps in to try and save him, but Knuckles jumps in and grabs Sonic stating to him "No, Don't do it Sonic!, He'll drag you under with him." When Metal allows himself to die, Sonic continues to break out of Knuckles' grip, and the two see the end of Hyper Metal Sonic. Before the credits of the movie, you see Knuckles and Sonic back again with the group with Sonic looking upset that he failed to save Metal. Dr. Robotnik comes up and the group sees him talk about him making a stronger metal, thanks to Sonic's Data on a CD, but he fails due to his clumsiness by dropping it on one of his turtle bombs and exploding in his face, causing the group to laugh at him.
When the president says "Thank Goodness, everything's back to normal", Knuckles states out loud "Almost, Not Quite!" and hits Sonic hard in the head, and he states to Sonic "Now, we're finally even, Sonic!" and he gives him an Akanbe gesture, he begins to run with Sonic chasing after him. Sonic states to Knuckles "Why did you hit me?" and Knuckles replies back saying "I was getting you back for stepping on my head, Sonic!" While the two keep running, the group catches a ride with Eggman to try and catch up with Sonic. Finally before the credits start, we see Sonic, and Knuckles still running after each other with Tails following, then the group all starts shouting and reaching for Sonic, this surprises him and he states "Whoo, I'm getting out of here Knuckles!", and Knuckles, with the last line in the movie he replies "Hey, wait a minute Sonic!".
Knuckles the Echidna has mostly the same personality from his game counterpart. He's ready to help Sonic and Tails, when he feels to being interested. Knuckles seems to be easily angered and gets annoyed fast about things on the background. Headstrong and edgy, Knuckles is a loner by nature, Like the game counterpart, he's shown to being a bit shy for girls, and is a level-headed, calm and collected treasure hunter, who is shown to get along well with Sonic and Tails several times in the show. He is likewise a force to be reckoned with.
Powers and abilities
Like Sonic, Knuckles is able to move fast from place to place, being able to jump high levels and having good fighting skills. He is also known being able to glide in the air, although it is shown to bemore akin to flying for unknown reasons. He's able to climb on walls as well, and being able to digging underground, even in the hottest furnace of the volcano.
During his journeys and treasure adventures, Knuckles has gained much knowledge and is aware of many things of Planet Freedom, including the volcanic actions on the north pole. Unlike other incarnations, he seem to know how to repair machines and planes during the time when he's seen repairing the Tornado.
In other media
This incarnation of Knuckles the Echidna made small appearance in a few panels in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog #101 as an alternated version of Knuckles, created when the timeline was altered when Knuckles tried to change the past. Here, he is seen coming to help Sonic and Tails fighting against Metal Robotnik. He literally dashes through Metal Robotnik, thus completely destroying it. However, after sharing a few words with Sonic and Knuckles, they and Tails are then facing more duplicates of Metal Robotnik. After that, they are never seen in the comics again, as the story moves on to the main prime timeline.
- In the original Japanese version, Knuckles is a mole, not an echidna, and it is also stated that he is an "accomplished flyer".
- Coincidentally, in the movie, Knuckles is seen in a Whack-a-Mole parody and called "Mister Mole" by Sara.
- Knuckles' hat from the movie was added to Archie Comics' incarnation of the same character from alternative Light Mobius stories, where it is stated that he got the hat from his great-grandfather Hawking as a gift.