The long wait for the new Sonic mini-series is over. Sonic is on a roll when it comes to content lately, and I would consider the release of the first Scrapnik Island issue a big player. Let’s dive into the impression:
Story impressions & characters
Scrapnik Island does very well with the spooky tone it intends to give off. To my recollection, Sonic has not touched upon horror, creepy, or scary elements very much, at least as of late. Especially with the direction, the main series issues are going, this is a breath of fresh air.
As seen in the previews for the issue, Sonic & Tails crash into a mysterious place and Sonic wakes up with a foot brace, rendering him a little more vulnerable and unable to combat like usual. Paying attention to the backgrounds and taking your eyes away from Sonic, nothing about the area is normal. What is around Sonic are broken and scrapped badniks, some of them even show time has gotten to them. Rust, oil, cracks, missing parts. This is to be expected with old robots, but the way they are shown looks disturbing. This story already lets you know it is not holding back what it wants to do within the first half of the issue.
It was pretty brushed past upon but Sonic stumbles upon a sunflower in a floating capsule while searching for Tails. Wonder what’s going on with that? It has not been shown what purpose it may serve to be there.
Sonic encounters active badniks that loom over him, just watching or trying to get near him. No one can blame Sonic for having a fight-or-flight response. Ignoring the fact badniks are usually out for him, these ones don’t have the friendliest of appearances due to the Frankenstein mismatching and ruggedness. A Toy Story connection that can be recognized here, intentional or not. That act of the movie where Buzz and Woody meet Sid’s experiments, anyone?
That is where Mecha Sonic makes his first appearance in the story. Greeting Sonic with a stare. Sonic immediately breaks for it but Mecha Sonic is on his trail, which does not help the first impressions at all. Love the panel of Mecha Sonic popping open the animal capsule Sonic was hiding in. Serves to be neat opposite role action. Soon after, Sonic finally meets Tails who explains that the badniks are good and are called Scrapniks. E-117 SIGMA also introduces himself and guides the lost heroes outside to see Scrapnik Island.
Here would be a good start to talk about the characterizations, and they are on point with how I would imagine they would react to these events. Sonic stays true to his core elements while also keeping his reactions believable. We don’t get to see Tails again till the second half of the issue and we don’t get to hear too much from him. But his geek-out reaction to seeing Scrapnik Island is very charming,
Mecha Sonic is a major highlight in this issue for the fact he is even there at all. He has such a cool design and seeing him get utilized again makes me very happy. Sonic is not very fond of him though, understandably so, but have you considered he has a cool cloak?
The artwork looks edible – It looks beautiful
The entire issue was a pleasure to read, not only for the story and characters but also for the art. Jack Lawrence is back again with his interior artwork, with Nathalie Fourdraine doing the colors. I’ve warmed up to Lawrence’s art style over time, so seeing his work again is a treat. Fourdraine typically does cover artwork for the series but has done colors for the 2021 FCBD special. Reading that issue last year was eye candy. Seeing those colors was something I did not know I needed. Similar reactions are had with this issue. Fourdraine did a great job with the storm pages and going through the Death Egg. The use of greens in the beginning pages helped convey the chaos that is happening, and the varying greys/light blues really helped with showing how dull but dreary the Death Egg is now.
Fourdraine has also helped with some of the character designs for the Scrapniks!
Sonic The Hedgehog: Scrapnik Island, Issue 1 is a good start to a potentially fan favorite mini-series. It does not require any prior context to the comics and keeps the characters at their core. The artwork is insanely good. Just looking at the preview pages alone, you should know you’re in for a treat to the eyes. This is a good break from what is going on in the main series. It is recommended that you give the book a shot, even if you have not caught up with the series, or don’t usually read the comics.