Sonic the Hedgehog's first live-action trailer just dropped, and fans are—honestly, a little frightened. The opening for the trailer looked promising enough. A jaded cop (James Marsden, X-Men) is surprised when his police radar reads 760 miles per hour. Upon investigating, he finds but one shining blue hair. And then right away we’re hit with the nostalgia: the golden rings circling the Paramount opening sequence, the familiar Sega logo, and its accompanying ringing sound, and the iconic spinning blue furball. They even threw in a shot of an old boombox with Coolio’s 1995 hit Gangster’s Paradise to really set the scene. And then you see it—Sonic’s live-action CGI appearance looks ideal at first glance, but someone on the team decided that Sonic needed a pair of…well, human teeth. The result is an utterly abysmal take on one of the 90s most beloved gaming characters. And right on cue, fans took to Twitter to voice their hilarious reactions.
While many Sonic fans are bummed about the reimagination of such an iconic character, there are those who choose to look on the bright side. Gavia-Baker-Whitelaw on Twitter reminds us that it’s not Paramount’s CGI department that’s at fault for Sonic’s creepy look. In fact, Sonic’s teeth have always been scary. The first Sonic game was produced by Sega in 1991. Considering the nearly thirty years since its birth, however, you would think that animators would have been able to showcase some technological improvement. While we can appreciate the sentiment of bringing back more than just Sonic from our early gaming days, it would have been nice to explore some other possibilities of what a live-action Sonic would look like.
This shouldn’t be better than the Sonic trailer but it is pic.twitter.com/E2gkyQjZn4— Paul O'Sullivan (@paulgreywind) April 30, 2019
Another golden tweet by this amused spectator features a debatably better version of a live-action Sonic the Hedgehog. In lieu of the work done by professional animators, this guy thinks that a real hedgehog might just be a better option than what has been given to us. The original poster of this video claims that this video is more on par with the Sonic we wanted. This isn't the first time that a live-action Sonic has been pitched. Back in 1994, Sega of America signed a deal with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Trilogy Entertainment to put together a Sonic live-action film. Screenwriter Richard Jeffries pitched a plot about Sonic teaming up with a boy in the real world to stop Robotnik. The film was eventually canceled and rejected when it was subsequently pitched to Dreamworks.
Sonic the Hedgehog the Movie: What if we were back in the 90s but also, simultaneously, in hell— pixelatedboat aka “mr tweets” (@pixelatedboat) April 30, 2019
The new trailer really rides on the wave of nostalgia that would hit home for most viewers who (were) excited for the new Sonic the Hedgehog film. The 90s were glorious times, and the trailer does a great job at targeting the age bracket of those who are most likely to see this film. This Twitter user hit the nail on the head when he suggested the film featuring the high-speed blue hedgehog is like a trip back to the 90s. But not in a good way. This reaction says a lot about what the general Twitter-verse has to say about the unconventional trailer.
I woke up because of anxiety but now I know that deep in my bones I felt that sonic trailer drop and part of me died— breebunn (@breebunn) April 30, 2019
The Sonic the Hedgehog live-action film is set to hit theaters November 2019. Apparently, this is the year of bringing animated game-based characters into the real world. And with the successful reaction to Detective Pikachu, it seemed that the trailer for just as lovable of a character like Sonic would be welcomed with the same ardor and appreciation. Of course, after the trailer dropped today, the reactions were less than spectacular. Feelings ranged from anger, depression, hysterics, and anxiety. Take, for example, this Twitter user who felt that a part of her died after seeing the trailer.
It’s hard not to compare one of the most infamous 90s characters to other notorious films of the same era. Kyle Olson quickly observed a resemblance to a character from the 1995 film Jumanji and the new live-action Sonic. Only a quick photoshop did the trick, again proving that even twenty years ago, the CGI experts did a better job than the monstrosity that is the new live-action Sonic. In juxtaposition with the other odd choices that were incorporated into the new Sonic trailer, many fans have been quick to ask, "What year is it?"
So I'll give credit where credit's due with the Sonic movie trailer: I like the idea of Robotnik looking more like a "normal" person at the start, deteriorating (for lack of a better term) into the classic Eggman look.— Benjamin Breuer (@BlackMageMavvy) April 30, 2019
Also his Eggman look at the end genuinely looks really good. pic.twitter.com/Lxib0Temgu
Also trending on Twitter is #Eggman and #Jimcarrey in reference to the surprising casting choice of Jim Carrey as the villain in the Sega film. Although, in an unexpected twist, people seem to be delighted by Carrey's interpretation of the evil Dr. Robotnik. This Twitter user even going as far as to say that he's willing to give credit where credit is due. He notes that Carrey's Eggman/Robotnik facade looks like the classic character and it "genuinely looks really good."
Sonic the hedgehog looks promising pic.twitter.com/pkLtGkIqUd— morgan sybert (@yeastybeastyUwU) April 30, 2019
Another character that Sega enthusiasts were excited to see is Sonic’s right-hand friend, Tails. While we didn’t get to see the charming orange fox in the first trailer, Twitter users were quick to speculate what the character will look like based off of what we have seen so far. And it isn’t pretty. While it is still unconfirmed whether we will see Tails or any of Sonic’s other comraderies, we can only hope that he looks better than this 2012 fox meme.
Which Sonic looks better?— Raph (@RaphTx) April 30, 2019
RT for popsicle, Like for Movie. pic.twitter.com/owbGjozbvK
From the jump, people have been criticizing the overall look of Sonic. Initially, there were issues with the color of his fur, his human-like legs, and the huge change at the way his eyes were modified. In the original games and animated series, Sonic’s eyes meshed seamlessly with a white mask. Once we got the first view of the poster’s back in March, people were quick to call attention to Sonic's creepy live-action interpretation. And, with this official first look at the CGI-generated Sonic, one Twitter user made a quick suggestion. An ice cream truck favorite back in the day used to be this delicious Sonic the Hedgehog popsicle, complete with gumball eyes. So far, Popsicle Sonic is winning in favor over the expertly-crafted live-action Sonic.
Calling it now: Detective Pikachu is the new MCU and the Sonic the Hedgehog movie is the new DCU. pic.twitter.com/nCkstaB9aZ— Jason Arriola (@darthmeticulous) April 30, 2019
Another ruthless comparison of Detective Pikachu and Sonic the Hedgehog came from this unapologetic Tweeter. The DCU has been criticized for years for its ill-formed CGI and plot lines in comparison to the Marvel Cinematic Universe's billion-dollar successes. And, based off of the handiwork we have seen from Sonic’s trailer today, it seems plausible that director Jeff Fowler’s version of Sonic is holding up just as well as characters in the DCU. Sonic the Hedgehog is Jeff Fowler's directorial debut, so we can only hope that the reactions by fans are taken into consideration by the new director.
Coolio: "So I wrote Gangsta's Paradise as a commentary on how gang life provides a false safe haven for minorities but also leads them into more misery due to often resulting in more turmoil."— Ehsan @ Texas Showdown (@EhsanDTT) April 30, 2019
Movie producers: "Sonic is going to go really fast to this because he's a gangsta."
The use of Coolio's hip-hop single "Gangster's Paradise" has Twitter users in an uproar. While one half of the Twitterverse is debating over Sonic's hideous human teeth, the other half is scratching their heads as to why this song was chosen to play in the trailer. Sure, the song came out just a few years after the initial release of the Sega's Sonic gaming division, but the premise of the song does not bode well with the story of a supersonic speedy blue hedgehog. Thankfully, fans are choosing to see the humor in all of this. And, while Sonic the Hedgehog will certainly be held under major scrutiny by the time it releases, at least we can say that we were able to get as a kick out of it.