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Sonic the Hedgehog: Annual 2020 is IDW Publishing's second Sonic the Hedgehog Annual.

Official solicitation

"Untold Tales of the Metal Virus!" As the Metal Virus plague-Dr. Eggman's latest plan that turns all organic life into zombified robots-spreads across Sonic's world, none can escape its path!

Join Sonic and some of his greatest friends and worst foes in six incredible, previously untold stories about how the world reacts to this latest threat![1]

Featured stories

Big's Big Adventure

Synopsis

In the Mystic Ruins, Big relaxes at his house and watches the sunset with Froggy. He states that no matter how many times they have seen it, it was still pretty and asks if Froggy agreed; the frog simply responds with a ribbit, to which Big agrees with. The cat then mentions that he has not seen it in a while as Froggy had led him on a long adventure. First, Froggy led Big all the way to Vista View, where he fished in the sewage system. There, Big met Sonic who was running through and they greeted each other. The hedgehog left as quickly as he came, leaving Big to continue fishing.

Shortly after this, Big followed Froggy to Riverside, where he fished some more. He was soon led to Barricade Town and Spiral Hill Village as well, looking for his pal. He officially lost track of him outside of Windmill Village. Big began to search for Froggy in areas such as one of the Egg Fleet's battleships and one of Dr. Eggman's pyramid bases. He later boarded a Resistance battleship as he thought he saw Froggy on there but it was apparently just a Wisp. He stayed on the ship as a stowaway and napped until they got to Angel Island. He soon fell off of the island when it began to fall due to Neo Metal Sonic taking the Master Emerald to become Master Overlord. Luckily, Big was able to stay afloat in the ocean with a life preserver.

According to Big, he decided to retrace his steps, recounting how he kept coming across a mysterious "magician" and two scary looking guys. He first saw the "magician" much earlier breaking out the two scary looking guys with a "trick". Days later, in Frozen Peak, he saw the same "magician" performing the same trick for Sonic and Silver, which he thought was boring. A little earlier, he actually saw the scary looking guys fight Sonic in Windmill Village, believing their names to be "Rash" and "Truffles". A while later, when Big looked for Froggy in Echo Mine, he thought he had heard their voices but did not see anybody and felt that his loneliness was playing a trick on him. Unbeknownst to Big, Rough and Tumble were stuck in a refuse pit as Zombots. Big stated that he began to get worried as he could not find Froggy anywhere and the world was becoming spooky, with cities being empty. The cat checked Cream's house to see if Froggy went to play there but still did not find him. Big tried looking for their other friends to help but did not find anyone. Hearing that Amy was inviting everyone for a "sleepover" at Restoration HQ, Big went there to check it out but was initially prevented by a "mean robot" from immediately entering in without getting scanned. Even after that, due to the HQ being overcrowded, Big was unable to search for Froggy properly and left early. Unknown to him, a Zombot outbreak had occurred soon after he left.

Big mentions to Froggy that he was very lonely and a little afraid, but knew that he had to have been lonely and afraid as well as he was on his own; this prompted Big to continue his search. Going to the last spot to double-check, which was an area a little outside of Spiral Hill Village, Big fished for his friend. Sure enough, Froggy caught onto the line, which overjoyed the cat. Big walked away from the scene with his pal, unaware of people running away from Zombots some distance behind him. Big thought that their troubles were over but he was wrong; on the way home, Big and Froggy came across "strange monsters" on the road who were prepared to attack them. Refusing to let them get to Froggy, Big stood his ground and fought the Zombots with his Fishing Rod. During the battle, Froggy leaped on the head of one the Zombots, which Big beamed at and thought was brave. The cat soon tied up the Zombots and fled home with his best budddy. Now caught up and as the moon rose, Big tells Froggy that he knew the rest as his tale had finished and they were home safe and sound. Noting that Froggy had been quiet ever since they got back, Big claims that since they were such good friends, he already knew what he was thinking; he tells his pal he was happy to be home with him as well.

Unbeknownst to Big, as Froggy had come in contact with the Metal Virus earlier, he slowly becomes a Zombot and begins infecting Big. The virus gradually spreads to the flora of the Mystic Ruins as well.

Appearances

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Continuity

  • Big is shown to be present at the scene of several previous Sonic the Hedgehog]] issues, namely Sonic the Hedgehog #1-#4, #6-#9, #11-#19 and #22.
    • On page seven, in the second panel, Big says "Froggy?! Where are you?!" This was a line first stated in Sonic the Hedgehog #22, "The Last Minute, Part 2" but only Big's voice could be heard.
    • Big was also revealed to be present at the scene of the story, "The Catalyst", which is also a story featured in this annual.

Trivia

  • As stated by Ian Flynn, "Big's Big Adventure" is a reference to Big's cameos in Sonic Adventure 2.
  • On page two, Sonic and Big greet each other with the lines "Hey, big guy!" and "Hey, little guy." respectively. This is derived from the lyrics "Hey big guy; Hey little guy" from the song, "Lazy Days (Livin' in Paradise)", the theme of Big in Sonic Adventure.
  • On page six, in the second panel two street signs in Seaside City are seen with the writing "Elson St" and "Dobbyn Dr", which are named after Sonic the Comic alumni Richard Elson and Nigel Dobbyn respectively.
  • On page six, in the second panel, a street sign can be seen with the writing "No Way" on it, as if someone had writting the word "No" over the original sign. This is in reference to the title screen of Blue Sphere, an Easter egg video game that was built into the Sonic & Knuckles cartridge for the Sega Mega Drive.
  • Minor background characters first seen in other Sonic the Hedgehog issues make cameo appearances in this story:
  • In the final panel of page seven, Froggy can be seen in a star constellation depicted with a tail. Later in the issue, Froggy is depicted without his tail. Froggy first gained a tail in Sonic Adventure but soon lost it later in the game after Chaos took back his essence from him.
  • On page eight, the Sonic Fan Club's banner can be seen torn apart. This banner was first seen in |Sonic the Hedgehog: Annual 2019, "Sonic Fan Club" and was used as the story's official text title.

Darkest Hour

Synopsis

In Sunset City, Nite the Owl begins his radio session for K-TBR 199.2. He begins playing a song for his listeners and states that afterward, he will start taking calls. The custodian, Don the Rooster, is taking out the trash and complains over having to clean up another mess again after another night. Nite replies to him saying that it was not so bad; to him, Don was providing a vital service for the radio station keeping it in tip-top shape. He then asks where Sunset City would be without his "dulcet" tones riding the airwaves, to which Don replies that he thinks that they would be better off. Nite soon receives his first call from a woman named Gala. She exclaims that she needs help as she was being followed by several people who looked sick. As Nite and Don share confusion, Gala continued, saying that their skin looked metal. A worried Nite asked the woman to take a breath and wondered and believed that the matter was better suited for the police, only for Gala to state that she had already called them and there was no answer. Before Gala could continue, the line was cut off abruptly. When Don asks what was going on, Nite tells him that he did not know and shares his headphones with him to listen. Several more panicked calls go through K-TBR 199.2, all detailing attacks from these metallic civilians. Most of of these calls ended abruptly as well

After listening to the calls for hours into the night, Don suggests taking the truck now to get a couple miles away by sunrise. Nite then reminds Don of the danger Sunset City was in and how K-TBR 199.2 was the number-one radio station for news and advice, though the latter did not see his point. When Nite mentions the people, Don snaps, telling Nite to shut up about the people and that he was not waiting around to get killed by monsters because of his great sense of pride. The rooster tells Nite to stay if he wants, saying that he guarantees that the people will not help him. After Don leaves an upset Nite, he gets a new call. The caller claims to be a representative of the Restoration and explains to Nite about the current pandemic of the Metal Virus turning civilians around the world into Zombots. According to the representative, they were setting up a safe house in the city and they needed to get word out to the survivors; as K-TBR 199.2 was the final station in the area still broadcasting, people were listening to him and he was needed to help them. Outside, as Don tries to start his car, he still expresses annoyance over Nite's decision. After turning on the engine, the rooster begins to drive away and listens to Nite's discussion on the radio. The owl asked if him reading the Restoration's emergency instructions would really help to which the representative stated that it was the only chance they had. Understanding the issue, Nite stated that even if one person was spared, it was worth it to him. Don listens to this and looks ahead.

Back at the station, Nite confirms that he got the info that was sent to him but mentions that he is not sure how he would be able to hold up out where he was. From behind, Don tells him not to worry; he had gotten some supplies from back out and tells the owl to concentrate on talking while he made sure nothing got into the station. When the representative asked if Nite was still there, he replies that people had spoken and want him on the air tonight and states that he will get started on the announcement. Nite begins speaking once again to his listeners, telling them that the Restoration was helping to gather people at the Grand Gold Flicky Hotel. If they could not reach there, they should call into the station to let the Restoration know where to find them. Before Nite could say their number, he is interrupted by a loud banging from Don hammering in the boards. Nite asks Don to keep it down as he was trying to save lives, only for the rooster to reply that he was trying to save him and hammers did not come with a mute button. Unbeknownst to them, a Zombot approaches the station.

Appearances

Characters:

Locations:

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Continuity

Trivia

Reflections

Synopsis

Appearances

Characters:

Items:

Vehicles:

Continuity

Eggman's Day Off

Flock Together

The Catalyst

Other features

Quotes

Trivia

  • This issue was initially going to be released on 25 March 2020, but was soon moved to 1 April 2020 instead. It was later moved again to 22 April 2020 and then to 29 April 2020. It was later delayed indefinitely due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but was later rescheduled to 10 June 2020, and then to 8 July 2020.
  • On cover A, Amy is seen to be eating a Sonic-designed cookie that was likely based on the real life Sonic the Hedgehog ice cream popsicle.

Background Information

The stories are set during the Metal Virus Saga. Most notably, it will also explain on what happened to Big the Cat before he became a Zombot.

Gallery

Cover artwork

Early covers

Interior images

References

  1. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Solicit
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