Sonic The Hedgehog Merch to Smash the Sound Barrier
We’re apparently doing this? We’re getting a Sonic The Hedgehog movie on February 14th of 2020, because nothing says “date movie with your sweetie” like Sonic. This is finally happening after the movie has been stuck in development limbo for some three-odd decades. After this much time, it can’t possibly turn out as bad as the Super Mario Brothers (1993) movie, right? We thought this would never happen, so now with such a low bar to clear we’ll keep our fingers crossed.
The Platform Games of the Console Wars
It’s hard for modern gamers to appreciate just how cutthroat the game console market got in the 1990s. Nintendo simply ruled the whole world, full stop. Every other platform could throw better graphics, better gameplay, better features, cheaper prices into the market… nothing worked. Finally, every game company that was not Nintendo figured out that they needed a platform game franchise too, or Mario would tromp them forever into the dust.
Sega’s answer to Mario was of course Sonic. But before we move on to that, let’s revisit this bit of wackiness:
“Heeeey, plumber boy, mustache man, your worst nightmare has arrived!” That was Crash Bandicoot, PlayStation’s bid to unseat Mario, coming five years after Sonic, who had already moved into the neighborhood. Sonic didn’t unseat Mario, of course, but he did fence off some of Mario’s territory. Crash, coming years later, was just sad. Crash was a transparent Sonic clone on top of trying to gang up on Nintendo from a distant third place. The commercial was the most memorable part of the franchise.
Anyway, here’s some of the mud Sega was slinging at Nintendo:
Ah, Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker! That’s a barrel of methed-up squirrels for another day, we have to stick to Sonic here. Even when Sega launched Sonic, their very first commercial had to name-drop Mario:
Console wars are just a thing that goes along with gaming consoles. Everyone has always accepted it. Never mind the fact that the same executives who rip each other in half on these commercials are typically taking a round of golf together that afternoon, that’s just Mama Capitalism for you.
Huh, wait, what’s this…
How did that get in our meme folder? Well, anyway, here’s some Sonic gear to snatch up before the price spikes when the movie comes out…
Sonic the Hedgehog Edition Monopoly Gamer Game
This is everywhere, and we have no idea what’s going on but apparently it’s very popular. It’s far from your typical Monopoly experience. Instead you’re buying properties named after Sonic levels, collecting and dropping rings instead of money, and trading in Chaos Emeralds and the like. This is quite a clever implementation and all, but probably up here for the novelty value more than anything else.
See, now we’re talking utility! Not only is this a handsome throw pillow in toned-down colors to better compliment your existing décor, but they have Sonic in his Shadow incarnation, looking very much like an anime / manga character. Speaking of, by the way, a Sonic manga exists. This will fit in just fine in your playroom or anyplace else you lounge around the house. You can always use another throw pillow anyway, right?
Classic ’90s Sonic in all his sassy, finger-waving glory. Now that you have it in 3D, you can verify for the record that Sonic is not flipping the birdy, to Nintendo or anyone else. See, that is very clearly an index finger there. When you see Sonic this way, he looks like he could live next door to the Cuphead universe. We do have to pay attention to design here because you will all remember the massive backlash against the first movie version months ago. Are you all happy now?
Typically when a big game franchise gets its screen adaptation, the big meaty casting goes to the villain. In Super Mario Brothers that was Dennis “Easy Rider” Hopper, probably the most shocking name anybody could have expected in that role at that time. So for Sonic’s arch-nemesis, who else are we going with but Jim “Cable Guy” Carrey? We could have sworn Carrey was out to pasture, his acting career finished, reduced to painting mangoes. For that matter, we thought the guy might be taking it easy to battle some personal demons, on a well-deserved rest. But no, he’s Dr. Robotnik now. Deal with it.
Oh yeah, did somebody bring up Mario vs Sonic rivalry back there? Well, look who published a game for the Nintendo Switch! Almost like they weren’t rivals at all, but having golf together. This is like that part of Who Framed Roger Rabbit? where Bugs Bunny and Mickey Mouse were in the same scene. Anyway, in case you’ve got a Nintendo Switch or two kicking around, this is a new game just in time for the movie and yet also fashionable for this year’s Olympics.
Finally, for those of you with a refurbished Sega Genesis still sitting around (like maybe you stream vintage games on Twitch or something), this is the original bona-fide cartridge! The classic game that started it all in all its 16-bit glory. Perhaps even if you have an emulator and want to justify a ROM dump by purchasing the actual cartridge, so you can retain your spotless record for clean living. Hey, we’re here to support you no matter your alignment.