True Blue, Part Two: Mega Man, Sonic and Life in the Sticks
Welcome to the second installment of True Blue, our weekly recap of Archie Comics‘ crossover event between the Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man series, “Worlds Unite.” Each installment, we’ll recap the notable moments of the latest chapter in “Worlds Unite” with Archie Action Editor Vincent Lovallo, and take a look at what lies ahead for the next chapter of the crossover event.
The two comic franchises had crossed over once before a few years ago in "Worlds Collide," with the after effects of that event reverberating through the Sonic Universe ever since. Mega Man has had his own troubles though, even if his universe hadn't been quite as devastated by the Super Genesis Wave. In fact, most of the characters in Mega Man comics don't even remember anything about "Worlds Collide."
Previously in "Worlds Unite," Mega Man X and his Maverick Hunters tracked down Sigma, their former mentor and leader who'd spurned his heroic nature and turned into a malevolent virus. Before he could be captured, Sigma fled to Lost Hex in the Sonic Universe, where he quickly recruited Eggman to fashion him an army of world-conquering Commanders. Not content to be someone's number two, Eggman tricked Sigma into recruiting Dr. Wily from the Mega Man Universe. The two ne'er-do-wells quickly concocted a plan to remove Sigma, as well as their respective nemeses Mega Man and Sonic, from the equation by enslaving the heroes under Sigma's command.
In Sonic Boom #8, the second chapter of the 12 part crossover, we briefly get to visit the world of, well, Sonic Boom. The Sonic Boom Universe is decidedly different from the standard Sonic Universe, and is based on the television cartoon/video game of the same name. Unlike Mega Man 21XX, which is just a future timeline in the actual Mega Man canon, Sonic Boom only shares characters in common with the more traditional Sonic U, and isn't part of the ongoing saga in that world.
We knew when Archie began promoting "Worlds Unite" that Sonic Boom's Sticks was going to play a role, but we didn't know just how big a hand she'd have in the event until this latest issue arrived. Mega Man X and a small band of Maverick Hunters were able to use Sigma's Genesis Portals to track him down, only they wound up in the wrong universe. It's then the trio meets Sticks, who after a battle with the Sonic Boom Eggman, has been separated from the rest of the heroes of this world. It doesn't take much convincing for Sticks to trust Mega Man X, and soon the new partnership is invading Eggman's lab for tools to better control the next Genesis Portal warp.
Meanwhile, back at Lost Hex in the Sonic U proper, Eggman and Dr. Wily are toiling away on converting Mega Man and Sonic into Sigma's slaves. It's then we learn Dr. Wily doesn't remember anything about the last time he and Eggman teamed up to ruin the lives of both their universes. We're "treated" to a recap of "Worlds Collide" from Eggman's twisted perspective, which makes sure to pit him and Dr. Wily in the best possible light. Wily, while at first unsure, accepts Eggman's version of their last encounter, and does that hand wringing thing all evil masterminds learn at an early age. It's just really easy to convince an egotistical mad scientist they were wronged by fellow peers.
The real crux of the issue lies in the final few pages however, where the vile new versions of Mega Man and Sonic are let loose into the world. Sigma sends M'egga Man to attack the capital of Sonic's planet, Mobotropolis, and Sonic Man to the heart of Mega City to cause some havoc. It's here we get our first clear look at the villainous forms the heroes have been forced into, with M'egga Man sporting some wicked faux sideburns and Sonic Man rocking a bit of the Metal Sonic look, albeit with some of that trademark Wily flair.
We don't get to see much of them in action this issue (stay tuned for "Worlds Unite, Part Three"), but we do know that Sonic can still spin dash and shoots rings out of his arm cannon. M'egga Man's abilities are a bit more mysterious, as the only thing we see him do this issue is leave a pile of unconscious bodies in his wake. As per traditional comic book hero fight rules, we're going to go out on a limb and say the next issue will feature the remaining heroes of both worlds taking on M'egga Man and Sonic Man and failing. We are only going to be 25% done with the story by that point after all. There needs to be some drama and build up.
ComicsAlliance: Mega Man X and his entourage accidentally wind up on the wrong planet, and encounter the Sonic Boom Universe's Sticks. She winds up being a pretty big help in getting the Maverick Hunters sorted, and recruits herself onto the team. Sticks and both Mega Man characters have been featured in the promotional materials quite heavily, but we've only really seen one version of Sonic. Will the Sonic Boom Sonic play a larger role, or are two Sonics just too much awesome speed power on the page for the villains to handle?
Vincent Lovallo: Haha, the latter for sure! One Sonic is a force to be reckoned with as it is! The Sonic Boom version of Sonic is featured briefly at the start of the story, but as for any other appearances later on I can’t really say. You’ll have to keep reading to find out!
CA: Let's talk a little bit about the developments between Eggman and Dr. Wily. Wily doesn't seem to remember anything about his previous encounter with Sonic's nemesis. Is this part of effects from his last encounter with Mega Man, or are we seeing signs that this Wily might not be the Wily we remember?
VL: Dr. Wily is in the same boat as Mega Man, both characters do not fully remember the
events of “Worlds Collide.” Rest assured, this has always been the same Wily we’ve
seen since the first issue of Mega Man.
CA: Now about those Unity Engines. We know Sigma plans to use them to make himself even more powerful, while Eggman and Wily want to use them for their own nefarious purposes. Just how powerful are these Unity Engines? Are we talking Chaos Emerald powerful, Genesis Wave powerful, or are they capable of much more than we've seen before in both of these universes?
VL: It’s hard to say, especially without spoiling anything. The doctors created the engines,
and gave them an intended purpose, however, there may be variables that even they
haven’t foreseen! We definitely haven’t seen the full extent of their power yet.
CA: We already know Eggman and Wily are expecting our re-branded heroes to revert to their heroic states, and then challenge Sigma once they realize he's behind the attacks on their worlds. How do you keep the stakes high enough for the protagonists (and readers) when even the villains know Mega Man and Sonic won't be evil for very long?
VL: It’s all about how we get to that point. You’ll see that even though the doctors have an
expected outcome for our heroes, things will not go exactly how they plan. I think fans
will really get a kick out of how it all unfolds; it’s a real treat to see!
CA: Looking ahead, we've already talked about the worlds that will be visited, but I'm curious to know what character you think readers should keep an eye on during this event. Sonic and Mega Man are obviously going to go through some changes, but who on this very deep roster might also have big moments to look forward to?
VL: Boy, it’s hard to narrow it down to a single character. We wanted to make sure that the entire cast is represented fairly, so there are big moments for just about everyone. If I
were to really narrow it down though, I’d say to keep a closer eye on Sticks, X, and the
doctors. There is another, but I think that’s enough for now.
And now, get an advanced look at "Worlds Unite" Part Three with an exclusive preview of Sonic the Hedgehog #273.
SONIC THE HEDGEHOG #273
Script: Ian Flynn
Art: Dan Schoening, Tracy Yardley, Terry Austin, Jack Morelli and Luis Delgado
Cover: Patrick “SPAZ” Spaziante
Villain Variant Cover: T.Rex
Covers Unite Variant (3 of 12): Ben Bates
The ALL-NEW Sonic/Mega Man Crossover sequel explodes onto the shelves with “Worlds Unite” Part Three: It’s a cascade of cross-dimensional chaos! On Sonic’s World, the Freedom Fighters are battling with the terrifying arsenal of M’egga Man! On Mega Man’s World, the Robot Masters can’t keep up with the super speedy Sonic Man! Who can possibly save our heroes? The answer is sure to surprise you! After the history-making “WORLDS COLLIDE” crossover event, Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man unite once more—and this time Sonic Boom and Mega Man X are joining the fray! Featuring cover art from the legendary Patrick “SPAZ” Spaziante, villain variant by T.Rex and part 3 of the epic 12-part connecting variant cover series by artist Ben Bates!
On Sale Date: 6/10 | 32-page, full color comic | $3.99 U.S