Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is now out in Irish cinemas and it is a sweet and enjoyable film. Check out my review at Scannain for a deeper dive. However, at GamEir, I will be talking about the surprisingly sweet and powerful theme of the Sonic the Hedgehog films. One that comes to the forefront in the second film.
The theme of Found Family in Sonic The Hedgehog 2. It’s a surprisingly sweet message in the film that unites our furry heroes in a way that in my opinion hasn’t been explored in the mythos before.
Exploring the family element
In the first outing for Sonic, we meet the young hedgehog alone and desperately searching for a home. He lives vicariously through the citizens of Green Hills. He watches the Wachowskis as they have their movie nights, he helps all the animals, in particular a turtle, and he struck up a love/hate relationship with Carl the local kook.
When he is found by Tom and they strike up a friendship he is inspired and saves the day from Robotnik. His “reward” at the end of the film? His own place in the Wachowski household as a kind of adopted child.
Fast forward to the next adventure
In Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Sonic is then met with two more anthropomorphic characters. He meets kid genius Tails and teen terror Knuckles.
The trio of Sonic, Knuckles and Tails have been many things in the past. One time rivals, friends and then a team but in the Sonic the Hedgehog 2 film they become a family. They bond over their mutual trauma and become better people because of coming to a genuine understanding of each other and their similar beliefs as well as their differences.
With Knuckles and Sonic in particular they share a trauma that has defined their whole lives. Having the Echidna and Owl tribes war for the Master Emerald and both Sonic and Knuckles suffer for it gave them a strange yet touching connection.
With Tails, he is similar to Sonic in the fact that he is looking for a place to be welcomed and treated with respect for his clear skills. He doesn’t want to be shamed for what some consider a deformity (two tails, really?). And with Sonic having learned life lessons from Tom and Maddie he can become that family for Tails.
This is helped by the human element which is usually what brings down a video game adaptation. Tom and Maddie want this family, no matter how strange they may seem to be. These are children, they need a home and all three of them are good kids.
They fight, they belittle each other at times but by the end of the film, they become an unconventional but touching family. They find a new home together within the household of Tom and Maddie.
It’s a sweet message to teach children as well as grow the franchise into something greater than it once was.