don't click here

I actually like the IDW Comics more than Archie

Discussion in 'General Sonic Discussion' started by PowerHoodz, Jul 14, 2022.

  1. Don't get me wrong, the Archie comics have been really good, but the reason I prefer IDW is that it's an alternate timeline of the main game canon and I feel helps build within the characters in the game canon. I also really enjoyed the story with Tangle and Whisper as well as the story with Surge and Kit. I feel this felt like the games, but brought back elements I felt like the games forgot about such as Knuckles protecting Angel Island, Cream's involvement with the team and making her likable, and Tails' courage and intellect (since Sonic Forces messed that up). I also love the newer characters such as Belle and how she was created and the tragic nature of it.

    This may come from me being more interested in the game canon despite mess ups from some of the bad games, but it's nice to see something following them written well.

    So what do the rest of you think? Do you prefer the IDW comics, the Fleetway comics, or the Archie comics? Feel free to express yourselves on this topic and why.
     
  2. I've warmed up to Archie over time; it had a lot of craziness but it really came into its own for better or worse later on.

    But I do kind of prefer IDW for that sense of familiarity.
     
  3. Lambda

    Lambda

    Member
    IDW, overall, is definitely the more well-written comic book.

    That being said, I grew up with Archie, and definitely have a soft spot for the Pre-Reboot Ian Flynn's era. He took all the various leftover plot threads and weird silver-age-comic-book weirdness and weaved them together into some cool stories that felt like they matched modern Sonic's tone. It was kinda neat to see really weird characters Monkey Khan, the Iron Queen, Zonic, and Enerjak actually get turned into cool and interesting characters with fun stories.

    The fact that the Archie comics were also essentially the ultimate Sonic crossover was cool too. Don't forget that Ray the Flying Squirrel was only ever in SegaSonic Arcade until Mania, and Fang only ever appeared in 8-bit games and Sonic the Fighters; yet there they were in the Archie comic alongside characters from a long-cancelled early 90's cartoon (the Freedom Fighters), and 2000's characters like Silver, Shadow, and Rouge.

    I never read post-reboot, but it apparently took this concept even further.


    So, yes, IDW is the better book and I'm realllllly enjoying it... but the fact that Archie got so wild is definitely part of it's charm.
     
    • Agree Agree x 4
    • Like Like x 3
    • List
  4. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

    The Voice Maestro Member
    439
    366
    63
    Cyber City
    Mega Man Zero: The Definitive Dub
    Yeah, part of the appeal of Archie preboot was seeing how far Ian was willing to push the Sonic IP and its characters while still keeping it interesting and unique compared to SegaSonic. The thrill of that was lost when the reboot happened, and it's lost even further with IDW.

    IDW is certainly better in an objective sense, but preboot Archie was more "interesting".
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
    • List
  5. xbloodywhalex

    xbloodywhalex

    team dark enthusaist Member
    57
    38
    18
    antarctica
    re-reading one piece, probably
    I think they both have their merits, and I can absolutely get preferring IDW, but I'm more of an Archie enthusiast myself - giant, sweeping worlds with huge casts, extensive worldbuilding on top of a lot of interwoven plot threads with a bunch of really weird (but fun) things on the side seems to be a constant amongst my favorite series, but I understand why other people might not find them as palatable.
     
  6. Starduster

    Starduster

    Sonic Retro's resident IDW slut Member
    1,378
    887
    93
    Britain
    Art...always art...
    I appreciate the Archie run for being able to reach into more of the extended Sonic and SEGA materials, bringing together several disparate branches of the IP into a single canon. However, I think IDW's take is ultimately far truer to the game universe, which I prefer. I want to be able to read these comics as a real extension of the games, even if the official word is that it's an alternate universe. Of particular note is that Sonic himself is truer to his game character here since he's not tied to the original setup of SatAM which served as the foundation for the Archie book. I think what the IDW book needs is time to grow out its universe, which it is of course making strides to do, and I think the new consolidations and retcons to the lore of the franchise will certainly help that by putting more concepts back on the table, which is ultimately why I argue against the hard division of the classic and modern identities of the franchise.
     
  7. Honestly, the biggest turnoff about Archie for me was just how different it was from the games. I understood why that was logically but it didn't really feel right, but it made it fascinating to me too.

    And now that we have IDW, I've honestly gotten much more appreciation for Archie. IDW is definitely more in line with the games, but I kind of feel like that's to its detriment at times. Because the writers cannot fundamentally change anything about the world or characters without consulting Sega, which is severely limiting on what kind of stories you can tell. It keeps things familiar but at the cost of creativity IMO. Its not a coincidence the comic exclusive characters tend to be the most developed.

    Archie could get away with a lot more and while some of it was stupid, it also made it much more entertaining.
     
  8. pkderbar

    pkderbar

    Member
    193
    69
    28
    Archie was cool and all but it always felt like fanfiction, ever reading it as a kid. I still remember buying Super Sonic vs Hyper Knuckles and it arriving in the mail. It's 25+ years old and in terrible condition but I still have it. But, as cool as that story is, all the little details that don't match the game always took me out of it. (Definitely wasn't feeling the love triangle between Sonic/Knuckles/Sally)
     
  9. Seriously, it wasn't just one love triangle and a lot of the reader base didn't care for most of it. I thought it being like a soap opera was one of the largest detractions of the earlier series. Almost felt that Archie Comics sorta ran off love triangles as a whole because of Archie but was so glad when it was put on the backburner.
     
  10. BlackHole

    BlackHole

    You're going to need MORE than help. Member
    4,850
    436
    63
    England
    Complaining
    Sonic the Comic, because nostalgia and I genuinely enjoy their take on the series.
     
  11. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

    The Voice Maestro Member
    439
    366
    63
    Cyber City
    Mega Man Zero: The Definitive Dub
    Au contraire. A ton of readers DID care about it, which is why they kept coming up. You may not have cared for it or thought they didn't belong in a Sonic series, but believe it or not, the love triangle thing was a key factor in what kept sales strong for so long. Archie Comics's entire lineup was built on love triangles and they were a huge part of what attracted female fans to the Sonic book. I can remember forums dedicated to shipping wars, and I mean literal wars, ongoing roleplays with fan allegiances to who Sally should marry.
     
  12. Josh

    Josh

    Oldbie
    2,123
    1,086
    93
    USA
    I only read Archie up to the Sonic Adventure arc, and obviously, IDW is a billion times better than anything Ken Penders were ever involved with. I binged the complete Metal Virus arc in one night a while back, I just sat there and kept buying issues, and it was a BLAST. I knew Ian was good, but like, damn, he earned that reputation, huh?

    I haven't read most of Ian's run on Archie, but I imagine I'd enjoy it at least just as much. I think I have more affection for the SatAM crew than anyone the games introduced after Adventure, haha. But I'm not generally all that invested in Sonic as a story either way, which I s'pose is why I never got back into it.

    Still need to give Sonic the Comic a shot sometime, though! I've heard nothing but good things!
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
    • List
  13. DefinitiveDubs

    DefinitiveDubs

    The Voice Maestro Member
    439
    366
    63
    Cyber City
    Mega Man Zero: The Definitive Dub
    Sonic the Comic is good if you prefer Sonic to be an asshole who emotionally abuses everyone around him, and are also violently British.
     
  14. Shaddy the guy

    Shaddy the guy

    Professional Internet asshole Member
    1,215
    576
    93
    OR
    Archie is a gigantic ball of madness, full of different artists and writers all trying to pull it every which way according to their vision, and it was mostly just a giant mess for hundreds of Sonic, Knuckles, and special issues (and one Sabrina the teenage witch issue), in no small part because Justin Gabrie and Scott Fulop just really didn't understand the property or care about keeping a lot of its loose threads under control. It was completely salvaged by the modern comic team, not because Ian Flynn is the most amazing writer to ever live or anything, but because he, Yardley, Stanley etc. deeply care about Sonic as a property and as a universe, and the post-Penders comics manage to achieve this beautiful harmony of SEGASonic, SatAM, and the reinvention of older, weirder comic concepts to fit those molds. It's a big, strange, mysterious and diverse world for Sonic to explore, and has an atmosphere no other Sonic comic quite manages to compare to, simply because its first fifteen years of nonsense managed to have all their potential squeezed out into the main story.

    The thing is though, you are always going to have to question in the back of your mind whether that was worth all the crap leading up to 160. Flynn didn't even soft-reboot the comics when he showed up, he explicitly was told to (and probably wanted to) conclude the plotlines that had been going in the comic up to that point. Enerjak Returns is an incredible arc to experience after 32 Knuckles issues and something like sixty more Knuckles solo stories in Sonic issues that were just Knuckles getting dicked around by his shitty dad and grampas, but do you actually want to read those? I have nothing but admiration for the team sticking to their guns and not throwing anything in the garbage, but I can't tell you how many times I've talked about the series to someone and heard about confusion from starting at 160, or not bothering because they wanted to avoid that confusion.

    It's amazing that they managed to pull it together at all, but honestly? I think it makes sense that the reboot happened, with or without Kenny Pendies' lawsuits. I used to be really angry at all that, but Penders's own awful behavior has softened me up to the idea of never having to credit him with anything ever again.

    Post-Reboot Archie should have been the best Sonic comic ever. It finally modernized a lot of stuff from Archie without really losing its sense of identity, and the thing is, I really understand where they were coming from, beginning right after Mecha-Sally, but I think this also crippled it as a potential story. Obviously I can't predict whether the cancellation would still have occurred, but I think the baggage of technically still being a followup to the previous 20 years of comics hurt the 2013 version as a standalone. I wish they'd been allowed to just start from Issue #1 and tell the story of Sonic and the Freedom Fighters and the games therein leading up to the Shattered World arc. Maybe that sounds tiring to some, but Sonic as a property doesn't have a perfect way of experiencing its story from beginning to present in any medium -- even if you play the games you still have to deal with Shadow and 06's continuity fuckups, and Post-SGW Archie still has some big changes (Colors happens before Unleashed!). But it got canned right after its first major saga, and right in the middle of Sonic's 25th anniversary, and that sucks.

    IDW...is good. Really good, in fact. It effortlessly takes all of the lessons we've learned from the games' stories and manages to make them work even under SEGA's weird corporate standards, and even those look like they're on their way to a better place (to some extent). It looks great, flows and reads great, and really doesn't weigh Sonic down with any kind of bullshit. There is no real way I can call it a qualitatively-worse book than...any other Sonic series, really (I admit that I haven't read Sonic the Comic yet and I don't plan to until we're done the Adventure Era of Deep Dive Zone, but I'm confident this will probably remain correct), but it does lack that holistic impression of a wide, multicultural world for Sonic and friends to explore where anything can happen. I think a common experience for new Archie fans is reading through Flynn's run and seeing all these characters and references to things they've never even imagined were a part of the series, and thinking how cool it must've been only to get turned off by the art or dialogue in the pre-160 stories. But that sense of wonder also kept a lot of people going in the first place, and while IDW doesn't struggle to conclude fifteen year-old character arcs about fucking nothing, it does feel a little shallow in terms of worldbuilding. Every town they visit is pretty much the same, filled with Forces NPCs (this is a bit unfair, they have better designs than that) and only as many new faces as SEGA thinks will be popular, rather than would flesh-out a consistent environment for the characters to exist in.

    Part of this is, uh, Archie had a decade and a half of stories to build all that up and IDW has been going for less than five years, but there was a charm in unhinged inconsistent weirdness that polished and sensible stories don't always match. With Flynn now in a position to affect the story of a major AAA Sonic title, I hope this will lead to SEGA allowing him to take more risks. But as I said, IDW is great, and I don't think it's going to become less-great anytime soon.
     
  15. DefinitiveDubs, the shipping Wars did have proponents. I mean, it's been a big part of the actual Archie line. But it was also a perpetual hate cycle against various characters because it clashed with people's ships in a lot of cases too. I think it became the relationship version of event fatigue because they always fell back on it, or created new characters to just throw into the mix (pretty sure that's how mina happened, editor wanted a new romantic rival). I think I was soured on it because of just how creepily it was done by Penders. Between St John and the evil Sonic stuff, that was a lot of weirdness even to kid me.

    Also agree with Shaddy the guy that it was the dedication and passion of the later Archie crew that kept everyone invested. I mean, I share Ian's love of Tail's adventure.

    I will say something for StC. It's paraphrasing because I can't remember who said it exactly, but it went along the lines of "Archie had much higher highs and lows with the earlier stories, but StC always had the more consistent art and plot." It's still hilarious to me that SatAM's earlier Concept branched into so many variations from so early on. It did the two worlds thing first, and was a fun different take.

    Certainly wished it was able to continue in it's official capacity. A shame that the rights are probably tied up with the writers much the same as the Pender's characters because I wouldn't mind seeing some of them crop up in the wider extended universe works.

    To xbloodywhalex's point about palatability, i do agree everyone has their own specific tastes and tolerances. I'm actually kind of hoping since Hivebrain owns DiC, or the back catalog, that Prime would be a fun way of bringing back some older ideas if only in a limited way. Play around with the multiverse akin to Turtles Forever and being able to pay homage to what came before.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 15, 2022
  16. Adamis

    Adamis

    Gimme waffles! Oldbie
    1,147
    93
    28
    Belgium
    Lammy and "Fafnir"
    Except he doesn't. And he cares about his friends. Don't limit your view on the comic on the out of context panels people usually use to badmouth the series.

    Those who use the panels of Sonic angry at Porker Lewis conveniently ignore these :

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    "He hates Tails" yet he's shattered when Tails dies in an alternate reality.

    [​IMG]

    Or when Super Sonic attacks the fox.

    [​IMG]

    Sonic just has a (weird) sense of humour. But he emotionally abuses nobody.

    [​IMG]

    People often cut the third panel to make Sonic look like he's not helping Charmy. The thing is, nobody likes Charmy in the comic, but Sonic still saves him.

    [​IMG]

    And should we talk about how shocked he was with Johnny's death, and his departure after that because Sonic blamed himself ?

    [​IMG]
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
    • List
  17. Shaddy the guy

    Shaddy the guy

    Professional Internet asshole Member
    1,215
    576
    93
    OR
    Again, I haven't read it (well, I've skimmed a lot of it, but not a close-read with note-taking like I'm currently doing), but I think those pages have just as little context as any other.

    We had a big angry argument about StC Sonic a while back that got split off into its own thread, and while it's obvious he's not like, a sociopath, that doesn't really excuse him. You don't have to be a villain to be mean to others. He mostly reminds me of dudes I knew in high school, but...I don't want Sonic to remind me of that. Sonic's sarcastic, but he tends to only tease people reactively, if at all. He certainly doesn't go after Tails. My experience with StC had him just straight-up insulting others unprompted on pretty frequently. He's more like Sheldon Cooper (yes, I've seen all of The Big Bang Theory, and I have to make that wasted time worth something), where it's clear the writers expect you and the cast to just take it in stride, but in both cases it's just too much too often. Boom Sonic is probably the best compromise, where it's clear he's the hero, but he has this inner cynicism that comes off a little harder at times without being too shitty.
     
  18. Adamis

    Adamis

    Gimme waffles! Oldbie
    1,147
    93
    28
    Belgium
    Lammy and "Fafnir"
    Well, are you able to provide full examples, like I did ?
     
  19. BlackHole

    BlackHole

    You're going to need MORE than help. Member
    4,850
    436
    63
    England
    Complaining
    One must remember, Britain has a very different culture to the USA:



    Skip to 1:48 for the analogy, that the British side of the pond would rather be the butt of the joke versus the USA preferring to be the one being the source. Sonic is a bit of a jerk because we like characters having flaws like that, not being some boring perfect being.
     
  20. Starduster

    Starduster

    Sonic Retro's resident IDW slut Member
    1,378
    887
    93
    Britain
    Art...always art...
    D-do we? I don't want Sonic to be boring and perfect but he never has been. He's always been an impatient little shit who quite often doesn't take things seriously enough. I completely agree that StC Sonic just comes off as a bully a lot of the time and showing baseline decency doesn't excuse that in the slightest. Yeah, he rescued Charmy, but only because his conscience couldn't allow him to abandon him to his fate. His inner monologue still shows that he's still all to ready to punch down at Charmy even when there's nobody around to hear him do it. When the real Sonic agitates someone, it's either because they have it coming to them or unintentionally because he's just too lackadaisical for them to handle and they don't feel like he's taking them seriously (see Surge in IDW #50 or Tails in whatever Archie he and Sonic had that bust-up over Fiona Fox).