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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Sonic: The Hero Who Never Stops Running

"But the one thing they love more than a hero is to see a hero fail, fall, die trying." - The Green Goblin, Spider-Man 2002

If you've never seen it, there's a scene in the first live action Spider-Man movie where the Green Goblin gives Spidey a little speech on his own views about just what trouble being a hero will bring him. The above quote is but a sliver of his words and while they may come from a villain, that doesn't mean that they don't hold some truth. For whatever reason, people do indeed love to see heroes fall. Be it comic books, real life, or in this case, video game characters, heroes fall and one of the biggest punching bags when it comes to the topic of failures over the years is SEGA's own mascot, Sonic the Hedgehog.

I haven't talked about it multiple times on this blog, but I've made it no secret that I do not like Teen Titans GO! Big shock, there are plenty of people that despise the show. It has taken up so much air time on Cartoon Network that I've found little reason to tune into the channel anymore if that's all I'm going to see. As much as I can't stand Teen Titans GO!, I find the overabundance of videos on YouTube saying that the show sucks/needs to bee cancelled and what not, to be almost if not just is irksome as the show itself. I get it, Teen Titans GO! is a blight upon TV, but talking about how horrible it is ad infinitum has gotten old fast. So what does this have to do with our speedy blue friend? Plenty.

Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy is a game I don't think I'd ever subject myself to for obvious reasons but I do love all the quotes that narrator Mr. Foddy chucked out to players after experiencing major setbacks. My favorite among the many quotes comes from Mary Pickford. "This thing that we call 'failure' is not the falling down, but the staying down."

Sonic has lost his footing and fallen down numerous times. Staying down after a fall is super easy to do. It takes zero effort to sit on your can when you fall and sometimes after you've been knocked down, it feels good to just stay there. However, getting back up, pressing on even when so many are calling you a failure, that takes effort. I think what might be the best thing about Sonic is that no matter how many times he's been handed defeat, he gets back up, wags that index finger with a smile and goes off to do what he does best, run. Even during the classic era when SEGA was experimenting  with Sonic and trying different things, he stumbled, although some fans and critics tend to suffer from a horrible case of selective memory, painting the classic Sonic era as if everything was perfect but that's an editorial for another day.

In a medium were so many video game characters are discarded and forgotten, Sonic has managed to stay relevant  for over two decades. There are those who think Sonic should hang up his shoes and retire, his glory days long behind him, believing that his games can only be good in 2D, playing like the titles from 1990s. Seeing as how Sonic is SEGA's mascot, there's no way they are going to stop making games. Yes, there are problems within Sonic Team that is hindering their games, such as an over-reliance on nostalgia. Despite that, Sonic refuses to stay down. Like a shonen anime character, he's got that never give up mentality. Fall seven times, rise eight. Keep on running Sonic, it may not seem like it at times, but you've got people out there rooting for ya.

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