|This character exists primarily or exclusively within the Sonic X continuity.|
Information in this article may not be canonical to the storyline of the games or any other Sonic continuity.
Shadow the Hedgehog (シャドウ・ザ・ヘッジホッグ Shadō za Hejjihoggu?) is a recurring character that appears in the anime series Sonic X and its comic series published by Archie Comics. He is a dark doppelgänger and the arch-rival of Sonic the Hedgehog.
He appeared in the Sonic Adventure 2 adaptation through episodes 33 to 38, although there were a few differences, such as in episode 38, Shadow teleported Christopher Thorndyke and Rouge the Bat to Space Colony Ark (instead of just Rouge). Christopher Thorndyke reminded Shadow of his true promise to Maria, instead of Amy Rose. The epiphany in episode 38 led him to join with Sonic to defeat the Final Lizard. He then helped Sonic prevent the ARK from crashing into Earth by taking off (and losing) his Limiters for a massive Chaos Control. From then on, he makes short appearances in flashbacks.
In Season 3, he had no clear memory of his mysterious past. The loss of his Rings meant that he used up all of his energy quickly until Chris returned the one that was lost at the ARK (and a copy, since only one was recovered) in Episode 63. When he transformed into Super Shadow, he released all his energy and was knocked out. In episode 68, he seems to have an image of Maria in his mind. In that same episode, Doctor Eggman visits the people of a planet the Metarex are warring with, including one orange-haired female teenager by the name of Molly. Shadow and Rouge meet her, and at the end of the French/Japanese version of the episode, Molly was killed by the Metarex. Shadow erects a makeshift grave for her, and Rouge notes that she was similar to Maria. In the English dub, Molly is seen flying off into the sky and instead of making her a grave, Shadow says that he will miss her and he is worried about her being all alone out in space.
In the last episode of Sonic X, it is unclear what happened to Shadow after managing to stop time for the heroes. However, he is seen putting a flower on Molly's grave, which confirms that he's still alive (Japanese version only). Also, Rouge suspects that Eggman knows what actually happened to Shadow.
Shadow is extremely arrogant, aggressive, brooding and very loyal to whomever he is serving and determined to whatever cause he is fighting for. He is anti-social and does not speak or smile much. He will smirk when Sonic or someone messes up something. But deep down, he does have a heart. He cares for those who cared for him such as Maria, Molly and Chris Thorndyke and often follows their goals in his own fashion no matter what the cost is. He can be caring to Sonic by showing up and saving Sonic when he needs it the most. Because of his past though, Shadow does not trust anyone besides himself.
Shadow is easily the most self-sufficient of all the characters. However, his lonesome and arrogant attitude also puts him apart from the other characters. Nevertheless, Shadow can at times be uncaring. For example, when he learned of Cosmo's true mission, he set off to kill her. Shadow, however, did this to try to protect the universe, implying that while he has a good motive, the means used to achieve it are only acceptable to him.
Shadow firmly believes that he is the "Ultimate Life Form" and almost all other life forms are lesser beings and thinks that no one can stand a chance against him.
Shadow only talks when it is absolutely necessary and dislikes being in groups, preferring solitude. Shadow often thinks teamwork is unnecessary because he can handle everything on his own.
Shadow is often depressed about the loss of Maria which is why he keeps to himself, but his relationship with Maria is obvious as he goes to great lengths to protect the planet and keep her dream of peace and prosperity alive. He has also been seen protecting other characters, for example Chris, Molly, and Rouge, proving that while his attitude makes him seem like a careless person, he does have some compassion.
Powers and abilities
Shadow is easily one of the most powerful characters in the series. In terms of speed, Shadow is extremely fast, capable of matching Sonic's and move at such velocity that he releases yellow energy discharges in his wake that he can use against enemies. As examples of his speed, Shadow could move both Molly and Rouge away from a large explosion in less than a second and can even dodge laser barrages. He is also very agile and has incredible jumping skills that allows him to jump hundred of meters into the air.
Shadow has a significant degree of superhuman strength as he could push back against one of Final Mova's heads single handed. His body is also able to resist incredible punishment, such as being slammed into solid surfaces and even survive from being struck by powerful laser cannons.
Shadow is naturally able to tap into the arcane powers of any nearby Chaos Emerald (fake or not) and utilize their chaos energy to empower himself and use a wide variety of Chaos Powers. With just one Chaos Emerald, he can induce Chaos Control to stop time, warp himself through space. He can also create multiple Chaos Spears or merging them to create one slide of chaos energy to increase its attack power. In "Shadow Knows", he is seen unleashing a blast of energy to destroy some security robots. By removing his Limiters from his wrists, Shadow can use the full limits of his Chaos Powers which enhances his overall power to the point where he can single-handedly destroy an entire Metarex fleet. However, using his full power for too long drains his stamina and will weaken him to the point where he will fall unconscious. He is also able to use Spin Attack to attack enemies, but does not use it to the same extent as Sonic.
Shadow has displayed fearsome combat skills, as seen in his first encounter with Sonic and during his raid on the Blue Typhoon when he was able to fight his way through a weaken Sonic, Knuckles (though Shadow is shown to struggle when he fought against Knuckles), and Tails (destroyed the X-Cyclone and escaped traps with Chaos Control). He was also shown fighting his way through a large fleet of Metarex soldiers, destroying them all. In addition, Shadow shows over-average intelligence, such as when fighting Scarship he realized a head-on attack wouldn't work. He then switched for some advanced tactics and instead decided to shake the ship apart from the inside by striking its body at incredible speed.
Shadow is able to use the seven Chaos Emeralds' power to transform into his super form, Super Shadow. In his super form, Shadow possesses theoretically infinite speed and strength, along with flight and virtual invulnerability. All of his abilities are also increased to an incalculable level; he once uses Chaos Control to contain and stop the Planet Egg's explosion, which according to Eggman, would have destroyed the entire universe.
Rouge first established the business transactions for helping Eggman and Shadow find the Chaos Emeralds. The two do not have the same teamwork relationship like they do in the video game series, whereas Shadow is even more distant from the other characters. Shadow doesn't seem to trust Rouge such as when they teamed up with Chris in order to search for the Chaos Emeralds, Rouge wanted to take the Chaos Emeralds all to herself by saying, "Hey guys! Why don't we split up to find the control room?", Shadow, as he was not trusting her, responded, "No, the Doctor wants us to stay together!", Rouge realized that Shadow couldn't trust her and ran off, Shadow noticed her running and found out that she was going to be hurt, Shadow went and saved her and told her not to do that again. In one episode, in the Japanese version, he gratefully thanks Rouge for helping him.
Shadow also seems to be easily annoyed by Rouge such as when Shadow was in Space Colony ARK, Rouge remarked, "Hi, miss me?". Shadow was annoyed and left the room with anger without saying a word followed by Rouge remarking, "I love it when you give me the silent treatment!". He's also annoyed by her fascination to the Chaos Emeralds, as she views them as just pretty gems.
Sonic is Shadow's arch rival. When they first met, Shadow showed interest in meeting Sonic, noting their similarities and mocked him as a weak opponent as he was able to defeat Sonic in combat. However, he later changed this view about Sonic after seeing Sonic using a Chaos Control. After remembering Maria's true wish, Shadow helped Sonic and his friends and fought with Super Sonic to stop the Space Colony Ark from destroying the earth.
When he appeared in the Metarex Saga, Shadow did not know Sonic and his friends because of his amnesia. Because of this, he fought against Sonic and his friends with Eggman. After Molly's death, Shadow realized that Sonic were right about Eggman's evil plans and therefore left Eggman to defeat the Metarex himself. After knowing about Cosmo's secret about being a spy for the Metarex, Shadow did not care to Sonic and he defeated him only to to kill Cosmo to prevent her from sending information to the Metarex. In the battle with Final Mova, Shadow showed some respect to Sonic and they worked together to defeat Final Mova and He charged himself with Sonic in Sonic Power Cannon despite the damage that the power could do to him only to help Sonic to defeat the Metarex once and for all. He also knocked Sonic to prevent him from doing a Chaos Control that could risk Sonic's life. Overall, there is always tension between Shadow and Sonic, but they have as well some respect for each other and Shadow will puts his differences with Sonic aside to help Sonic against any powerful enemy that come in their way.
When Eggman released Shadow from his capsule, Shadow respectfully bowed to Eggman and thanked him, and also told him that he will do whatever he will tell him to. Eggman orders Shadow to help him get all of the Chaos Emeralds. Shadow further helps Eggman in Season 3 against the Metarex or Sonic, However he left him after Molly's death and decided to fight the Metarex alone.
She is shown to be like Shadow's big sister. They were both born and raised on Space Colony ARK, and shared the dream of going to visit the planet Earth, shown best in a flashback Shadow has where he's talking to Maria. He states "What's it like to see the sky above your head? I want...to find out." However, when Project Shadow was shut down, Maria decided that she had to set Shadow free, and released him to Earth. Apparently, the last thing Shadow saw in that space station was Maria being shot and killed by a soldier. Shadow then spent his time after being awakened planning to avenge her by destroying the humans, which is why he showed Eggman the Eclipse Cannon. He often has hallucinations of Maria, such as seeing her reflection standing next to his on any glass surface, or hearing her plead to him when Chris was asking for help. Chris reminds Shadow of Maria with his kindhearted ways.
Chris seems to remind Shadow of his late friend, Maria. He saved Chris, along with Rouge, just before Prison Island explodes. After he takes them to the ARK, Shadow keeps a close eye on Chris. When Chris begged Shadow to help Sonic save the world, Shadow beats Chris back until Chris is finally able to remind Shadow of what Maria truly wanted, for him to protect the people of Earth and always watch over them. Shadow later saved Chris, along with Cosmo, in season 3 as repayment for Chris returning Shadow's limiters to him (Japanese version only).
- Shadow is usually seen to have a missing quill in his "hairstyle" as compared to the games.
- Shadow uses the third least amount of "Engrish" in the Japanese version. Right behind Vector, who uses the second least amount of Engrish, and Charmy, who only used it once.
- At the end of Season 3 in the English dub, it leaves a cliffhanger of Shadow's whereabouts but it is implied that Eggman is aware of what happened to him.
- At the end of Season 3 in the Japanese dub, Shadow's shadow can be seen placing a rose on Molly's grave. This tells the viewers that Shadow is in fact alive.
- Although Shadow's blood is red in episode 73, it is hinted in the game Shadow the Hedgehog that his blood is actually green due to all members of the Black Arms having green blood. It should be noted, however, that the Black Arms had red blood in the Japanese version of the game.
- When Shadow is first shown running, he runs like Sonic rather than himself. This was probably to confuse the audience into thinking it was Sonic instead of Shadow because, at the time, he wasn't officially introduced.
- Even though he clearly is darker in nature than Sonic, Shadow was seen tearing up before Sonic was ever seen crying. Shadow shed a tear when he realized Maria's true wish (episode 38) and Sonic cried before he had to part ways with Chris at the end of season 2. Chris was present in each scene and triggered the reason for both hedgehogs to cry.
- The jets of Shadow's Hover Shoes were not present in his shoes in the pilot of Sonic X. But later in the series Shadow have jets in his Hover Shoes.
- Shadow appears to be able to sense chaos energy: in "Trick Sand", an image of the purple Chaos Emerald appears in Shadow's mind after he awoke from his capsule, and he teleported himself to the location where Sonic and his friends were fighting a Metarex over it.