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This article is about the 1992 manga series. For other Sonic manga, see manga.
Sonic-the-Hedgehog-manga-logo

The logo of serialized manga strips.

Sonic the Hedgehog (ソニック・ザ・ヘッジホッグ Sonikku za Hejjihoggu?) is a manga series that was serialized in Shogakukan's Study Magazines (小学館の学習雑誌) for primary school children and Bessatsu CoroCoro Comic Special (別冊コロコロコミックSpecial). It was published in Japan between 1992 and 1994. It is loosely based upon the video game series, with an original story concept developed by Kenji Terada.[1]

Sega of Japan's marketing department devised the strategy get Sonic manga published by Shogakukan, in order to appeal to primary school children. The Sega of Japan design team was involved in the creation of the characters.[2]

The first comic story was published in the April 1992 issue of Shogaku Ninensei (小学二年生).[1]

Overview

Big dreams make Sonic propel Forward!!

A opening two-page spread for the serial story Big Dreams Make Sonic Propel Forward!!. Drawn by Kōichi Tanaka. (Fan translated.)

The serialized manga takes place in Hedgehog Town, where a hedgehog boy named Nicky lives. Nicky has the ability to turn into Sonic the Hedgehog, as this incarnation of the main character is Nicky's alternate persona.in this town, Sonic, along with Miles "Tails" Prower and Charmy Bee, arises to challenge Dr. Eggman. The serialized manga features Nicky with several friends in the Hedgehog Town, including his girlfriend Amy and his best friend Little John. Nicky also encounters a lizard bully named Anton Veruca and his brother Mad. Nicky's family at home includes his mother, Brenda, his father, Paulie, and his little sister, Anita. Except for Tails, nobody knows that Nicky is actually Sonic the Hedgehog, not even Nicky himself.

Each manga strip is quite simple and with a recurrent plot: Nicky is a peaceful boy that likes to spend time with his beloved girlfriend Amy, his sister Anita and his friend Little Jon; but his peace is usually spoiled by one of Dr. Eggman's plans or by the troublemaker Anton Veruca. In any case, Amy will encourage Nicky to stand up to the bad guy, but Nicky, being shy and a bit of a coward, will always fail, and most of the times Amy will end up as a captive. However, Nicky's desire to save Amy and be able to win will eventually transform him into the supersonic hero Sonic who will save the day in no time.

Few misunderstandings are made regarding the figure of the heroic Sonic who succeeds where Nicky fails. This has make Amy long for Sonic more than for Nicky on more than one occasion, making Nicky jealous of himself; eventually, Dr. Eggman and Anton Veruca start suspecting that Nicky has something to do with Sonic, but Nicky will simply reply that he does not even know this blue hedgehog everybody's been talking about.

Characters

Main characters

Sonic Manga cast

The cast of the Sonic the Hedgehog manga. Image taken from Sonic the Hedgehog Book.

  • Nicky: A sweet and even-tempered hedgehog. His biggest dream is to defeat the forces of evil and be considered a hero; unfortunately he is weak and a bit of a coward. Even if the people near him believe in him, he doesn't have the nerve to take action, which is why he is often bullied by Anton or Eggman. Romantic and reflexive, Nicky loves to spend time with his girlfriend and his friends. Even though Nicky doesn't have the strength to save the day, when his help is really required, he will eventually transform into his alter-ego Sonic.
    • Sonic the Hedgehog: Cocky and overconfident, Sonic seems to be the exact opposite of Nicky. Sonic arrives always just in the nick of time to save the day and he always knows what must be done. Sarcastic and heroic he appears to be perfect. The peculiar thing is he has a conscience and a memory of his own that seems to have nothing to do with Nicky's (explaining Nicky's obliviousness to Sonic's existence).
  • Doctor Eggman: Sonic's long time egg-shaped archnemesis, who creates for time after time many zany schemes to capture Sonic and make his lackey as part of taking over the world. Eggman is also known to be master of disguises and has alternate persona called Dogman, policeman of the Hedgehog Town. He uses his alternate persona as part of his plans to capture or defeat Sonic. One of the running gags of the CoroCoro Special comic strips is to make Sonic part of the spice to Eggman's newest cooking recipe featured in his "Cooking Hell".
  • Miles "Tails" Prower: Two-tailed fox, who knows Sonic and tries to pursue him everywhere as possible, even calling him his big brother. In his introduction of the CoroCoro comics, he is shown to have bit of attitude as wearing sunglasses and owning a sports car. Since then he becomes either good partner for Nicky or sidekick for Sonic, helping him from many situations. Often he also gets captured or getting into trouble along with the rest of the group.
  • Amy: She is known to be the girlfriend of Nicky and is one of the most recurrent characters to be seen in the stories. Sweet and innocent, Amy often seems to be the "damsel in distress" and the "femme fatale" that makes not only Nicky but also Sonic and Anton Veruca (who is always trying to force himself on her at times even making her his captive) fall in love with her. She is shown to be very much in love with her boyfriend and is the one who believes most in him, anyhow it's not rare to see her falling for the brave Sonic, the one that actually saves her every now and then she is in danger. Nicky, on his side, would do everything to make Amy happy and proud of him; most of the times the transformation into Sonic is forced by the will of saving her.
  • Anton Veruca: He claims himself to be the number one hooligan of the city. Spiteful and arrogant, he enjoys most of all to create trouble. His favorite target is poor little Nicky who is unable to protect himself and his friends from him. Without a doubt he is Nicky's first opponent: fiercely teases and embarrass the hedgehog whenever he tries to react. However he does seem to enjoy creating trouble to all the people dear to Nicky such as Little Jon and, most of all, Amy for which he shows to be attracted. His worst enemy is Sonic that is the only one that can defeat him without breaking a sweat. Often he swears revenge at the end of the story without being able to do anything against the supersonic hero. Nicky fears him and wishes often to be strong and old enough to beat him, he doesn't even dare to defy him, because he's too afraid, and when he tries to, he gets quickly knocked unconscious.
  • Charmy Bee: Small honey bee, who is shown to be one of prominent characters. He is first found out sleeping inside the Time Box, that Nicky and his father Paulie have during their airmail flight. After getting caught by Eggman, Charmy wakes up and gets out of Time Box and frees him from the water prison by rewinding time to the moment before Sonic gets captured.

Recurring characters

  • Anita: A young little hedgehog with a tomboy attitude. She is usually seen along her brother, Nicky, and his friends. She is a good friend of Amy and at times acts like she's a little sister for her. Likes to make fun of people in an innocent way. Contrary of her brother, she seems to have more nerve. When in an episode she was captured by Eggman, not only she was not afraid but actually amused on how she could push around the villain's robots to do whatever she wanted. Anita is featured more in Bessatsu CoroCoro Special comic strips.
  • Little John: Nicky's best friend and is a fat and gluttonous hedgehog, he spends most of his time eating.
  • Brenda: Nicky's mother, who is rarely shown during the comic's run.
  • Paulie: Nicky's father. Nicky has a great consideration for him and wishes to grow up strong and courageous just as him. Plus, in one story, Paulie tells his son about an event that happened 20 years before: he had lost control of his plane, and when he lost all hope, Sonic came to the rescue, not only saving his life, but also making it so that Paulie would meet his future wife, Brenda. For him, Sonic is a divine protector, the greatest hero that ever lived and, also, his cupid. This implies that Sonic the Hedgehog had something to do with Nicky's family even before he became Nicky's alter ego.
  • Mad: One of Anton Veruca's younger brothers, who is seen hanging around with Anton and his gang.
  • Migu: Anton Veruca's younger sister.
  • Hogi: Anton Veruca's father.
  • Vera: Anton Veruca's mother, the scariest of the Veruca family.
  • Metal Sonic: A robotic version of Sonic created by Dr. Eggman.

Publishing history

There are multiple Sonic-related manga releases in the Shogakukan magazines between 1992 and 1994. Kenji Terada is credited for creating the concept of the manga series.[1] The first serial story strip titled simply Sonic the Hedgehog was written and illustrated by Sango Morimoto. It was first released on April issue of Shogaku Ninensei in 1992.[3] In Shogakukan's Shogakukan no Gakushuuzasshi (a series of study books aimed at children of several school grades),[1] there are six editions aimed at primary school children: Shogaku Ichinensei (1st Grade), Shogaku Ninensei (2nd Grade), Shogaku Sannensei (3rd Grade), Shogaku Yonensei (4th grade), Shogaku Gonensei (5th Grade) and Shogaku Rokunensei (6th Grade). Each edition is targeting its specific elementary school grade, from grade 1 to 6. Sonic has made an appearance in all of these at some point between 1992 and 1993. The styles are of all kinds: some drawings are in black and white, some other are colored by computer and some present a water-color style.

However, rather than comics, the 4th grade Shogaku Yonensei features illustrated prose stories titled The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog (ソニックの大冒険 Sonic no Daibouken?).[1] They are written by Kenji Terada and illustrated by Norihiro Matsubara and later Yoshihiko Ochi.

The Sonic manga series also ran in Bessatsu CoroCoro Comic Special and its holiday extra issues, which are also published by Shogakukan. Like Shogakukan's previous Sonic-related stories, CoroCoro manga strips are based on the story concept of Kenji Terada. These stories are written and illustrated by Kōichi Tanaka and ran from 1992 to 1994.[1]

List of serial stories

To this day, the serialized manga remains obscure to many people outside the Japan and original copies of comic strips are extremely rare. Unlike the later Dash & Spin Super Fast Sonic, none of serialized stories have been released as tankōbon (volumes). The following list is an incomplete set of translated, documented or discovered stories.

Shogaku Ichinensei

A learning magazine aimed at first grade elementary school children (age 6-7). Sonic the Hedgehog ran from the May 1992 issue to the August 1993 issue. The stories were written and drawn by Mitsuo Kimura up to the January 1993 issue and by Sango Morimoto from the February 1992 issue onward. Full color.

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
May 1992 127-?
June 1992 111
July 1992 121
August 1992 30
Mitsuo Kimura September 1992 96-?
Mitsuo Kimura, Takase Hiroshi October 1992 42-?
Mitsuo Kimura November 1992 66-?
Mitsuo Kimura, Takase Hiroshi December 1992 26-?
Mitsuo Kimura, Takase Hiroshi January 1993 60-?
Sango Morimoto February 1993 37-?
Sango Morimoto March 1993 60-?
Sango Morimoto April 1993 82-84
Sango Morimoto May 1993 1 April 1993 137-?
Sango Morimoto June 1993 92-94
Sango Morimoto July 1993 1 June 1993 91-93
Sango Morimoto August 1993 1 July 1993 118-119

Shogaku Ninensei

A learning magazine aimed at second grade elementary school children (age 7-8). Sonic the Hedgehog ran from the April 1992 issue to the August 1993 issue. All of the stories were written and drawn by Sango Morimoto. Full color.

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
Chapter 1 Sango Morimoto April 1992 93-97
Chapter 2 Sango Morimoto May 1992 3 April 1992 15-?
Chapter 3 Sango Morimoto June 1992 147-?
Chapter 4 Sango Morimoto July 1992 24-30
Chapter 5 Sango Morimoto August 1992 3 July 1992 14-20
Chapter 6 Sango Morimoto September 1992 3 August 1992 145-149
Chapter 7 Sango Morimoto October 1992 3 September 1992 30-?
Chapter 8 Sango Morimoto November 1992 40-?
Chapter 9 Sango Morimoto December 1992 34-?
Chapter 10 Sango Morimoto January 1993 72-?
Chapter 11 Sango Morimoto February 1993 86-?
Chapter 12 Sango Morimoto March 1993 68-?
Chapter 13 Sango Morimoto April 1993 93-?
Chapter 14 Sango Morimoto May 1993 84-?
Chapter 15 Sango Morimoto June 1993 107-?
Chapter 16 Sango Morimoto July 1993 98-?
Chapter 17 Sango Morimoto August 1993 205-?

Shogaku Sannensei

A learning magazine aimed at third grade elementary school children (age 8-9). Sonic the Hedgehog ran from the April 1992 issue to the August 1993 issue. All of the stories were written and drawn by Hirokazu Hikawa. Black and white.

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
Chapter 1 Hirokazu Hikawa April 1992 140-?
Chapter 2 Hirokazu Hikawa May 1992 136-?
Chapter 3 Hirokazu Hikawa June 1992 236-?
Chapter 4 Hirokazu Hikawa July 1992 215-?
Chapter 5 Hirokazu Hikawa August 1992 193-?
Chapter 6 Hirokazu Hikawa September 1992 153-?
Chapter 7 Hirokazu Hikawa October 1992 221-223
Chapter 8 Hirokazu Hikawa November 1992 3 October 1992 204-206
Chapter 9 Hirokazu Hikawa December 1992 2 November 1992 71-?
Chapter 10 Hirokazu Hikawa January 1993 153-?
Chapter 11 Hirokazu Hikawa February 1993 239-?
Chapter 12 Hirokazu Hikawa March 1993 221-?
Chapter 13 Hirokazu Hikawa April 1993 206-?
Chapter 14 Hirokazu Hikawa May 1993 192-?
Chapter 15 Hirokazu Hikawa June 1993 140-?
Chapter 16 Hirokazu Hikawa July 1993 144-?
Chapter 17 Hirokazu Hikawa August 1993 124-?

Shogaku Yonensei

A learning magazine aimed at fourth grade elementary school children (age 9-10). Instead of manga, this magazine featured an illustrated prose serial called Sonic no Daibouken (ソニックの大冒険?), stylized in English as The Adventures of SONIC the Hedgehog, which ran from the April 1992 issue to the August 1993 issue. All of the stories were written by Kenji Terada. They were illustrated by Norihiro Matsubara up to the March 1993 issue and by Yoshihiko Ochi from the April 1993 issue onward. Black and white.[1]

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
Chapter 1 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) April 1992 96-?
Chapter 2 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) May 1992 95-101
Chapter 3 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) June 1992 2 May 1992 51-?
Chapter 4 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) July 1992 69-75
Chapter 5 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) August 1992 3 July 1992 61-67
Chapter 6 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) September 1992 3 August 1992 127-133
Chapter 7 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) October 1992 3 September 1992 149-?
Chapter 8 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) November 1992 167-?
Chapter 9 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) December 1992 23-25, 161-167
Chapter 10 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) January 1993 1 December 1992 195-?
Chapter 11 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) February 1993 181-?
Chapter 12 Kenji Terada (w), Norihiro Matsubara (a) March 1993 191-?
Chapter 13 Kenji Terada (w), Yoshihiko Ochi (a) April 1993 261-?
Chapter 14 Kenji Terada (w), Yoshihiko Ochi (a) May 1993 265-?
Chapter 15 Kenji Terada (w), Yoshihiko Ochi (a) June 1993 245-?
Chapter 16 Kenji Terada (w), Yoshihiko Ochi (a) July 1993 223-?
Chapter 17 Kenji Terada (w), Yoshihiko Ochi (a) August 1993 241-?

Shogaku Gonensei

A learning magazine aimed at fifth grade elementary school children (age 10-11). Sonic the Hedgehog ran from the April 1992 issue to the August 1993 issue. All of the stories were written and drawn by Hirokazu Hikawa. Black and white.

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
Chapter 1 Hirokazu Hikawa April 1992 126-?
Chapter 2 Hirokazu Hikawa May 1992 237-?
Chapter 3 Hirokazu Hikawa June 1992 253-?
Chapter 4 Hirokazu Hikawa July 1992 221-?
Chapter 5 Hirokazu Hikawa August 1992 259-?
Chapter 6 Hirokazu Hikawa September 1992 231-?
Chapter 7 Hirokazu Hikawa October 1992 111-?
Chapter 8 Hirokazu Hikawa November 1992 142-?
Chapter 9 Hirokazu Hikawa December 1992 138-?
Chapter 10 Hirokazu Hikawa January 1993 116-119
Chapter 11 Hirokazu Hikawa February 1993 29 December 1992 119-122
Chapter 12 Hirokazu Hikawa March 1993 6 February 1993 218-?
Chapter 13 Hirokazu Hikawa April 1993 238-?
Chapter 14 Hirokazu Hikawa May 1993 114-?
Chapter 15 Hirokazu Hikawa June 1993 272-?
Chapter 16 Hirokazu Hikawa July 1993 132-?
Chapter 17 Hirokazu Hikawa August 1993 276-?

Shogaku Rokunensei

A learning magazine aimed at sixth grade elementary school children (age 11-12). Sonic the Hedgehog ran from the April 1992 issue to the August 1993 issue. All of the stories were written and drawn by Sango Morimoto. Black and white.

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
Chapter 1 Sango Morimoto April 1992 108-?
Chapter 2 Sango Morimoto May 1992 236-?
Chapter 3 Sango Morimoto June 1992 236-?
Chapter 4 Sango Morimoto July 1992 106-?
Chapter 5 Sango Morimoto August 1992 106-?
Chapter 6 Sango Morimoto September 1992 110-?
Chapter 7 Sango Morimoto October 1992 202-?
Chapter 8 Sango Morimoto November 1992 140-?
Chapter 9 Sango Morimoto December 1992 148-?
Chapter 10 Sango Morimoto January 1993 84-?
Chapter 11 Sango Morimoto February 1993 108-?
Chapter 12 Sango Morimoto March 1993 148-?
Chapter 13 Sango Morimoto April 1993 204-?
Chapter 14 Sango Morimoto May 1993 130-?
Chapter 15 Sango Morimoto June 1993 146-?
Chapter 16 Sango Morimoto July 1993 124-?
Chapter 17 Sango Morimoto August 1993 136-?

Bessatsu CoroCoro Comic Special

A bimonthly sister publication to Shogakukan's popular Gekkan CoroCoro Comic manga anthology magazine, primarily aimed at elementary school boys. Sonic the Hedgehog ran from the August 1992 issue to the June 1994 issue. All of the stories were written and drawn by Koichi Tanaka. Black and white.

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
Chapter 1 Koichi Tanaka August 1992 30 June 1992 226-245
Chapter 2 Koichi Tanaka October 1992 29 August 1992 373-383
Chapter 3 Koichi Tanaka December 1992 375-388
Chapter 4 Koichi Tanaka February 1993 26 December 1992 377-?
Chapter 5 Koichi Tanaka April 1993 313-325
Chapter 6 Koichi Tanaka June 1993 30 April 1993
Chapter 7 Koichi Tanaka August 1993 118-?
Chapter 8 Koichi Tanaka October 1993
Chapter 9 Koichi Tanaka December 1993
Chapter 10 Koichi Tanaka February 1994
Chapter 11 Koichi Tanaka April 1994 503-516
Chapter 12 Koichi Tanaka June 1994 30 April 1994

Gekkan CoroCoro Comic

Although the Sonic the Hedgehog manga never featured in the regular monthly issues, it was featured in two seasonal specials - the 1992 Summer Vacation Special Issue and the 1993 Spring Vacation Special Issue. Both stories were written and drawn by Koichi Tanaka. Black and white.

Chapter Writer / Artist Cover Date Release Date Page Nos.
Koichi Tanaka Summer 1992 24 August 1992 107-124
Koichi Tanaka Spring 1993 23 April 1993 97-111

Related releases

References to games

Despite the universe of the serialized manga series being heavily separated from games, it has connections and references to games.

References

Sonic the Hedgehog in other media