So, can we talk about this growing, angry, very LOUD portion of the fandom that's been making more and more noise lately? This thread is the most extreme case I've seen, advocating for LITERAL GATEKEEPING: https://twitter.com/RGamer19/status/1213574779900506119 And while this video is a lot more nuanced than that, it seems to have been the catalyst that ignited the most recent wave of this sentiment: To sum it up, y'know how Aquova once quipped, "Finally, Sonic is edgy again!" That is now unironically what a vocal part of the fandom seems to want. It's to the point now that when I post on Twitter, _liking Sonic Colors_ is seen as a controversial take. Of course, there's nothing wrong with liking the series for different reasons. I mean, before it was even five years old, Sonic had already taken on a tremendous variety of tones, styles, and characterizations. Fleeetway, SatAM, AoStH, SegaSonic... all of these were the introduction to the series for different fans. Even Oshima's original design was filtered through Sega of America. Contrary to what Metal said, there was NEVER only one Sonic. So to proclaim, basically, "I think it's time for us to start trying to bully other Sonic fans out of the fandom if they don't appreciate the series in the CORRECT WAY, and we can ascertain that because Yuji Naka tweeted a thing," strikes me as... well, depressingly kinda familiar. All this consternation about how lame Sonic is now and how he's being marketed to KIDS at the expense of the REAL FANS is, I'm sure a lot of people here remember, the exact same shit some fans OUR age were saying 15-plus years ago. It's just back then, we were saying it about Heroes, or Shadow, or SONIC & THE BLACK KNIGHT (which is now apparently the last good Sonic game, just like Sonic 3 used to be.) The point is, when we were younger, some of us were crying, "Those aren't the REAL Sonic!" about the VERY TITLES that are now being held up by the younger crowd as "the real Sonic." "What is Sonic supposed to be?" is an incredibly subjective question, and for most people, it's going to come down to what they grew up with. Arguments like, "This is what Naka intended!" strike me as inherently fallacious not only because Sonic was designed by committee and intended to have alternate regional continuities from the beginning, but also because, to draw a comparison, I'm quite sure that Into the Spider-verse is not precisely what Stan Lee had in mind when conceptualizing Spider-man. And actually, Spider-man's a great example of another character that persists across a wide variety of tonally-clashing continuities. Long-running media franchises are not exclusively auteur pieces. Look at Doctor Who for another example. It's been sci-fi, sci-fantasy, an adventure show, more military, more action-heavy, all depending on who the Doctor is and more importantly, who the showrunner is. Sonic is perhaps the best example in the gaming industry of a character whose appeal has carried through a wide variety of styles, canons, and universes. The breadth of Sonic as a franchise is one of my favorite things ABOUT it, and I wish fans were more apt to celebrate that, or at least RESPECT that other fans enjoy different things about it.