- Sonic X
Sonic X ソニックX
Genre Action, Adventure, Mecha, Supernatural, Science fiction, Fantasy, Drama, Comedy TV anime Directed by Hajime Kamegaki Studio TMS Entertainment Licensed by 4Kids Entertainment
FUNimation Entertainment (DVD)
Network TV Tokyo English network FoxBox (2003-2005)
4Kids TV (2005-2008)
The CW4Kids (2009-2010)
Network Ten (2004)
Seven Network (2005–2006)
Original run April 6, 2003 – May 6, 2006 Episodes 78
Sonic X (ソニックX Sonikku Ekkusu ) is an anime series based on the Sonic the Hedgehog video game series. It was produced in Japan by TMS Entertainment with the partnership of Sega and was created by Sonic Team and Sonic Project. In the United States, 4Kids currently owns and manages copyright and branding of the series.
Series 1 (Seasons 1-2)
During the mission to rescue Cream and Cheese from Dr. Eggman's headquarters, Sonic and his friends are caught in an explosion of Chaos Control, a reaction that occurs when the 7 Chaos Emeralds come together, that transports them to another dimension occupied by humans. When Sonic and his friends are transported to Chris' world and they get into trouble with the police they hide in Chris's house, where only Chris, his grandfather, their maid, Ella, and their butler, Tanaka, know of their existence. Eventually, however, they are accepted as heroes and celebrities, with the entire city knowing about them. The second season features plots based on Sonic Adventure, Sonic Adventure 2 and Sonic Battle. In the second season (in Japan, the end of the first series), it is discovered that the Earth and Sonic's world were once a single planet, but a cataclysmic event split it into two and sent them into different dimensions. The flow of time on Sonic's world is considerably slower, with a single month on Sonic's world equaling an entire year on Earth. Because Sonic and his friends were transported to Earth, the two worlds are beginning to merge into one yet again, which will cancel out their respective time lines and freeze time itself; thus, Sonic and co. have no choice but to go back.
Series 2 (Season 3)
The new villain, known as Dark Oak, tries to get the Chaos Emeralds from Sonic, but Sonic scatters them across the galaxy to prevent Dark Oak from using their power. Meanwhile, six years having passed in the human world, Chris uses a portal to travel to Sonic's world, where only six months had passed, but ends up in the form of a twelve year old. During their reunion, Dark Oak and his Metarex army (similar to the Black Arms from the Sonic games) attacks and steal the "Planet Egg" from Sonic's planet. Without the Egg, all the plants on the planet wither. Once again, Sonic and his friends venture into space to retrieve the Chaos Emeralds. Dr. Eggman follows soon afterwords with his ship: The Crimson Egg.
On the course of the Season, Sonic and his friends end up on many different planets, searching for the Chaos Emeralds and restoring life to almost barren planets. During this time, Dr. Eggman joins up with the Metarex and becomes one of the five Metarex kings soon after, along with: Pale Bay Leaf, Black Narcissus, and Yellow Zelkova. It is later revealed that Dr. Eggman was stealing technology, he, along with Decoe, and Bocoe, were later arrested by Pale Bay Leaf, and sent to jail. Sometime later Chris shows up and tries to save him. Only for Dr. Eggman to point out that he never needed any help breaking out, and the crew proceed to escape.
A few episodes later, Cosmo is eventually unveiled as an unwilling spy for the Metarex, who are part of the same race of anthropomorphic plants as Cosmo. When Dark Oak, Pale Bay Leaf, and Black Narcissus enact a plan that could destroy the galaxy, Cosmo sacrifices herself with the help of Super Sonic, Super Shadow, and Tails. Her essence is manifested in the form of a seed, which Tails plants once they return to their own planet. With the Metarex destroyed, Eggman helps Chris return to his home, implying he may never be able to return. Soon thereafter, Dr. Eggman revives his previous rivalry with Sonic, albeit a more light-hearted one.
The series ends with a couple of minor cliffhangers, such as the whereabouts of Shadow (although it is implied that Dr. Eggman knows what happened to Shadow) and what Dr. Eggman plans to do with Chris gone. In the original Japanese version, Shadow the Hedgehog is still alive and he is seen where he put a rose on Molly's grave.
- Sonic The Hedgehog
- Chris Thorndyke
- Miles "Tails" Prower
- Knuckles the Echidna
- Amy Rose
- Cosmo the Seedrian
- Cream the Rabbit
- Cheese the Chao
- Shadow the Hedgehog
- Rouge the Bat
- Dr. Eggman
- Decoe and Bocoe
- Chaotix Detective Agency
- Vector the Crocodile
- Espio the Chameleon
- Charmy Bee
- Vanilla the Rabbit
- Big the Cat
- Tikal the Echidna
- E-102 Gamma
- Maria Robotnik
- Chris Thorndyke: Chris is a boy who becomes Sonic's best friend and good friend of his companions. He is mainly raised by his grandfather, Chuck, and his maid, Ella. He lets Sonic and his companions stay at his mansion, and he helps them find the Chaos Emeralds. After they return back to their dimension, Chris spends six years working on a gate that will allow him to transport himself to Sonic's world. After he arrives, due to one year being one month in Sonic's world, he is only 6 months older (making him look identical). Voiced by: Sanae Kobayashi (child) and Masakazu Morita (adult) (Japanese), Suzanne Goldish (child) and Michael Sinterniklaas (adult) (English)
- Helen: Helen is one of Chris' closest friends, and one of the few who readily accept Sonic and his friends from the start. Helen was born with a condition that restricts her to a wheelchair and has spent much of her life a paraplegic. Despite this, Helen thrives for adventure - she showed very little fear when Sonic pushed her chair faster than anyone else. Six years later, Helen is seen to be in a relationship with Chris. Voiced by: Noriko Hidaka (Japanese), Amy Birnbaum (English)
- Frances: One of Chris' friends at school. She is notable for wearing deep salmon pinkish-red overalls. Voiced by: Yuka Shioyama (Japanese), Kerry Williams (English)
- Danny: One of Chris' friends at school who occasionally helps Sonic. He fights and loses to Chris in the Battle Tournament. Voiced by: Naomi Shindoh (Japanese), Rachael Lillis (child) and Greg Abbey (adult) (English)
- Chuck Thorndyke: Chuck is the paternal grandfather of Chris Thorndyke. He is a scientist and inventor, who bonds with Tails due to their shared interest of inventing. Voiced by: Bin Shimada (Japanese), Jerry Lobozzo (English)
- Lindsey Thorndyke: Born "Lindsey Fair", she is a beautiful famous actress and the mother of Chris. Voiced by: Naomi Shindoh (Japanese), Jennifer Blood (English)
- Nelson Thorndyke: Chris' father who is the wealthy owner of a computer and housing business. His father is Chris' grandfather, Chuck. Voiced by: Ted Lewis
- Ella: Ella is Chris's large, jolly and Hispanic maid. She befriends Amy and Cream after discovering their existence. She enjoys her job and she is very hotheaded. Voiced by: Mike Pollock
- Mr. Tanaka: Mr. Tanaka is Chris's butler, who discovers that Chris is hiding the existence of Sonic and his companions. He is a skilled martial artist and he works with Topaz on occasions. Voiced by: Darren Dunstan
- Decoe and Bocoe: Decoe and Bocoe are Eggman's personal humanoid assistant robots. Decoe is tall, slim and gold-colored, while Bocoe is short, stubby and silver. They are almost constantly seen with Eggman, helping him pilot his machinery among other things. They are somewhat clumsy and stupid (similar to Scratch and Grounder), and they constantly reflect on their failures and insult Dr. Eggman behind his back. In Japanese, the word 'dekoboko' (凸凹) means uneven, bumpy, jugged. The symbols on Decoe and Bocoe's chests represent the two kanji in this word. Their character designs are based on the villains Omega and Epsilon from previous TMS series Kinkyū Hasshin Saver Kids. Voiced by: Ken Yamaguchi (Decoe) and Bin Shimada (Bocoe) (Japanese), Andrew Rannells (Decoe) and Darren Dunstan (Bocoe) (English)
- Bokkun: Bokkun is a robot made by Doctor Eggman to send messages to Sonic that come in a form of a TV that blows up in the recipient's face. Bokkun is constantly mistreated and abused by Eggman, though he still is very loyal to him. He enjoys using bombs to annoy people and he flies using a jetpack. He has a weakness for sweets, as seen in episode 44, the Sewage Search, when he was bribed by Chris' friends to call for Sonic's help in exchange for Ella's apple pie and strawberry shortcake. Bokkun was also forced into helping Rouge the bat when she found out a secret of Bokkun's in episode 56, An Enemy in need, which she used to blackmail him. She found a heart shaped locket with a picture of Bokkun's crush, Cream, which was revealed at the end of the japanese version of the last episode. Voiced by: Yumiko Kobayashi (Japanese), Andrew Rannells (English)
- Cosmo the Seedrian: Cosmo is a young member of a plant-like alien species known as Seedrians, whose homeworld was destroyed by the villainous Metarex. She escapes to Sonic's homeworld after the attack and meets Sonic and his companions. She has the ability to empathize with plants, trees, or the planet and determine their state of life. She also can decipher the Metarex language. Her skirt allows her to jump to high heights, and gently float down to the ground (as an homage to Alice in Wonderland). During Season 3, she falls in love with Tails. Voiced by: Etsuko Kozakura (Japanese), Amy Birnbaum (English)
- Metarex: The Metarex are a group of five robotic cyborgs, Pale Bay Leaf, Black Narcissus, Yellow Zelkova, Red Pine, and their leader, Dark Oak, who use an endless army of robots to rob worlds of their "Planet Eggs," the source of all life, leaving the worlds dying in their wake. They later reveal that they are the masculine members of Cosmo's species, who turned their back on their own kind after using their own planet's planet egg to become extremely powerful, which eventually corrupted them. In his first appearance, Dark Oak easily outmatches Super Sonic (though it should be noted that Sonic was, by his own admission, holding back). Dark Oak is voiced by Jouji Nakata in Japanese and Matt Hoverman in English.
- Mr. Stewart is a government agent posing as a school teacher assigned to watch Sonic and his friends by the President. He is a fan of Chris' mother, Linsey Thorndyke. He always looks out for Chris and the other kids in his class. Voiced by: Andrew Rannells
- Scarlet Garcia is a reporter for SSTV news in Station Square. Voiced by: Megan Hollingshead
- Sam Speed: Sam is Chris's maternal second uncle and the leader of the Speed Team, a special unit of the Station Square police force that uses high-performance Formula racing cars. He forms a rivalry with Sonic. In the Japanese dub, in every appearance he makes, he has a different nickname. Voiced by: Souichirou Tanaka (Japanese), Greg Abbey (English)
- Topaz is a GUN agent and the human partner of Rouge the Bat. She initially disapproves of Rouge, though they later become friends, and their main assignment is to retrieve the Chaos Emeralds from Eggman. Voiced by: Kayzie Rogers
In 2003, 4Kids Entertainment and VIZ Media co-licensed Sonic X for the United States, with the series being distributed by Paramount Pictures, Sonic Team. and Jetix Animation Concepts and licensed on DVD by FUNimation, Alliance Films (Canada) and Paramount Home Entertainment (UK). The episodes were then localized for the intended demographic, including the complete replacement of the score, as well as removing suggestive content and changing the fate of several characters, as well as editing the story to be much lighter and younger in tone for US Release. Other continuity errors include mislabelling "Chaos Control" as Doctor Eggman's base. While both English and Japanese characters were digitally removed or replaced with incoherent symbols (This was done by TMS Entertainment themselves, rather than 4Kids.), Chinese characters were unedited in The Adventures of Knuckles and Hawk, in coherence with the episode's setting.
4Kids did not dub the Sonic games at the time and went with their in-house VAs. Mike Pollock, the current voice actor for Doctor Eggman, stated during an interview that he was provided samples of the game's voice overs as a reference. The original 4Kids cast included Jason Griffith (as Sonic and Shadow), Lisa Ortiz (as Amy), Amy Palant (as Tails), Dan Green (as Knuckles), Rebecca Handler (as Cream), and Mike Pollock (as Dr. Eggman).
As 4Kids owns the international distribution rights to Sonic X, the edited version of the show was then provided to most other countries around the world, including most of the countries of Latin America and Europe. The show was dubbed into the corresponding languages for each country, but the footage had the edits already made in the American version, along with the music changes. Furthermore, the scripts for the foreign dubs were based on the revised dub scripts of the American version rather than the original Japanese scripts, most likely as a way of maintaining consistency with the edited footage. The only other countries to receive their footage of Sonic X directly from Japan—without any of the edits made by 4Kids Entertainment--are France, China (including Taiwan and Hong Kong), South Korea, and Thailand.
The cast of the 4Kids production eventually became the official cast for Sega's Sonic games from 2005 to 2010.
When a producer for the series was asked about any prior experience with the Sonic franchise, he replied, "I've never played the game, seen the series or read the comics."
As of 2011, 4Kids Entertainment still owns the North American rights to Sonic X as of this day. The edited dub airs on Toonzai (formerly The CW4Kids) in reruns, and the entire series can be viewed online at 4KidsTV.com, 4Kids' YouTube channel, Hulu, and Toonzaki, although the episodes are only available in the United States.
However, in July 2009, 4Kids uploaded a preview for a subtitled episode of the Japanese version of Sonic X.  Season 1 of the Japanese version with English subtitles were uploaded to Hulu, along with the dubbed version of the complete series.  More recently, the Japanese opening and closings were added to 4Kids' YouTube channel. On June 7, 2010, 4Kids had begun releasing Season 1 in Japanese on their YouTube channel. By June 11, 2010, the dubbed version of the complete series and the First Season in Japanese with English subtitles became available on 4Kids' YouTube channel. As of June 28, 2011, all episodes of the Japanese Sonic X with english subtitles became available to watch. 
Although all the episodes aired in the US, they were not presented full-length compared to the original Japanese version. In the Japanese version, some scenes from some Sonic X episodes contained material such as profanity, violence, blood, and death. As a result, 4Kids Entertainment removed most scenes containing these elements, due to the fact that the American version was rated TV-Y7 FV, although most of the fighting was kept in all the episodes. A glaring example of this is in Episode 3, where police-issue rifles have laser-blaster sound effects in the dub, despite obviously being gunpowder weapons.
For the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, much of Europe, and Brazil, the opening song was performed by a female singer repeating the show's title numerous times, the U.S. ending theme was kept, however, and all of the inserts were edited out of the English version. In addition, the DVD release in Japan often replaces insert songs with either an instrumental version of Hikaru Michi, or the song itself with vocals.
All Sonic X episodes were released in America and Australia. In 2005, four volumes were released in the UK by Warner Home Video, which featured two episodes per disc. In Australia, 17 volumes of the first series were released by MRA Entertainment in 2005-2006, which featured three episodes per disc. In America, after complaints about confusion among which episodes were on which volumes, 4Kids released all three seasons on 13 episode collection box sets by Universal Studios Home Entertainment & Contender Entertainment Group.
In September 2005, Archie Comics, publisher of the North American Sonic the Hedgehog comics started a series based on Sonic X. Issue #40 was its finale, and in March 2009 a new comic book series started entitled, Sonic Universe.
McDonald's released a set of Sonic X disk launchers one with Sonic, one with Tails, one with Knuckles, and one with Shadow on the launchers and the disk themselves. The Leapster, from LeapFrog Enterprises, released a Sonic X-themed math game intended for kindergarten and first grade students. Toy Island also made action figures in 2006 and 2007, some of which were, too, slightly altered re-releases of figures from a Sonic Adventure line and larger molds of part of a series of Gashapon figurines. Jazwares has also made a fairly new version of these figures now available in stores.
A Sonic X Trading Card Game was also created.
- TV Tokyo (2003-2004)
- Jei TV
- Fox Kids (2004-2005)
- Jetix (2005-2008)
- Italia 1
- Rede Globo
- SIC (2005-2006)
- Jetix (2004-2009)
- Yoyo TV
Notes and references
- Sonic X at Sonic Central
- Sonic X at Sonic Team
- Sonic X (anime) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia
- Sonic X (anime) at Absolute Anime
- Sonic X at TV Tokyo (Japanese)
- Sonic X at Wikia
Sonic the Hedgehog features Other TV Comics and Manga
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