Archie Sonic the Hedgehog Issue 34 was the thirty-fourth issue of the main Sonic the Hedgehog comic series.
- "To 'Bot or Not to 'Bot!" - Part One
In Knothole, Sonic and Rotor attempt to De-Roboticize Uncle Chuck and Muttski. They fail to make any progress and Uncle Chuck says that Robotnik is the only one who can De-Roboticize them. Meanwhile, in Robotropolis, Dr. Robotnik summons Snively to examine his top secret project. Snively is shocked to enter a room filled with a new model of robots: the Combots. Robotnik announces that he wishes to be called General Robotnik from now on, as he plans to march on the Great Forest with his new army, overwhelming the Freedom Fighters with the sheer number of robots at his disposal.
Dulcy overhears their conversation, having been eavesdropping while disguised as a gargoyle. Dulcy frantically heads back to Knothole and tries to tell the Freedom Fighters about Robotnik's plan, getting a few minor details wrong in the process. The Freedom Fighters decide that the best way to fight back is to destroy the Combots all at once. Sonic, Uncle Chuck, and Muttski volunteer to head to Robotropolis on a sabotage mission. As they head out, Chuck warns Sonic that they may be doing exactly what Robotnik wants them too.
- "To 'Bot or Not to 'Bot!" - Part Two
While Chuck is entering the access codes to enter Robotropolis, he realizes that Robotnik hasn't changed the codes since he escaped. The group heads inside and locates the Combots. While Sonic runs ahead to plant the explosives meant to destroy the robots, Robotnik fires a beam at Uncle Chuck and Muttski. When Sonic returns, Uncle Chuck grabs Sonic and refuses to let go. Both Chuck and Muttski have fallen under Robotnik's control once again. Robotnik enters to gloat over his victory, and informs Sonic that he will be leading Robotnik's forces into the Great Forest.
The next day, several of the Freedom Fighters return to Sally with no news of the missing trio. However, they are soon made aware of their friends' whereabouts when Robotnik's Combot army appears in the distance with Sonic strapped to a tank at the front of the procession. They spot Uncle Chuck and Muttski marching with the Combots and realize they must have been brainwashed to follow Robotnik. With no other options, Sally orders the population of Knothole to evacuate to underground shelters nearby, only to find Robotnik waiting at the entrance with Uncle Chuck.
- "To 'Bot or Not to 'Bot!" - Part Three
Sally stands against Robotnik, telling him that he may be able to stop some of them, but he'll never stop all of them. Robotnik disagrees, informing her that the Combots are programmed to hunt down every non-robotic Mobians, no matter the cost. He orders the Combots to carry out their orders, but quickly finds that they've started marching the wrong way. The Combots ignore his orders to stop and walk off a cliff into the ocean below. Refusing to give up, Robotnik orders Snively to roboticize Sonic immediately. Unfortunately, Sonic has miraculously escaped his imprisonment and is about to use the roboticizer on Robotnik.
Muttski attacks Sonic, allowing Uncle Chuck to pick up Robotnik and Snively on a hovercraft. As they escape, Sonic reveals that Uncle Chuck and Muttski were acting the whole time, having been implanted with Neuro-Overriders by Rotor to prevent them from falling under Robotnik's control again. Pretending to be loyal to Robotnik, Uncle Chuck reprogrammed the Combots and weakened Sonic's restraints to allow him to escape. Sally is happy the plan worked, but demands that they don't leave her in the dark again. The mission accomplished, Uncle Chuck decides to use Robotnik's ignorance to spy on him for the Freedom Fighters.
- "A Sense Of History" - Part One
As Knuckles continues his search for the missing Chaotix, his thoughts turn to the lessons his father Locke gave him on the history of their people-specifically, how the Floating Island came to be, and how that tale led to the rise of the ominous Mount Fate. Originally, he recalls, the Floating Island was a part of Mobius' surface-specifically the continent of Downunda-and was the home of a thriving Echidna civilization. However, two of Knuckles' ancestors, Jordann and Kayla-La, discovered a threat to their city in the form of the White Comet, which was set to crash land in the midst of the city.
Determined to prevent this disaster, the two scientists-backed by their people-set out to excavate a number of Chaos Emeralds. After recovering twelve, they relocated them to their city and placed them in caverns beneath it, allowing the Floating Island to come into being. Despite her success, Kayla-La felt as though her people were leaving their home behind, which Knuckles equated with the island's isolation from the surface of Mobius. As he contemplates the rise of his homeland, Knuckles' thoughts inevitably turn to the menace that arose from the very power that the Echidnas used to save themselves.
Ellen Leonforte, a staff artist at Archie, is astounded by the sheer outpouring of fan mail from readers who want to be Scott Fulop's pen pal. Scott replies that if they send him a nice pen he'll be their pal. The Archie Art Department responds to his awful pun by lobbing pies at him. Art by Bill Golliher.
- Sally: "I'm overjoyed that your plan worked, guys, but next time...would you mind telling ME about it?!"
- Combots are introduced for the first time.
- Uncle Chuck and Muttski return to Robotropolis to act as spies.
- The origin of the Floating Island is revealed.
- The events in this issue are similar to the ones in the Sonic the Hedgehog episode "Sonic Conversion" except Uncle Chuck is deroboticized but only temporarily until the effects wear off and he becomes roboticized again. The power of his will is able to overpower the effects of mindcontrol caused by Roboticization without the need for a power ring which happens in the Sonic the Hedgehog episode "Ultra Sonic". In the Archie comics it is because of the side effects of the Void (STH#30). Bunnie Rabbot is also deroboticized temporarily in this episode which was merely suggested in STH#29 that Bunnie could be deroboticized using a deroboticization device but Sally was roboticized instead with the hopes/plan that she could be deroboticized by this device later (similar to the story "A Crowning Achievement" in Sonic Miniseries #2).
Cameos & References
- The cry "--we're movin' on up!" is a common reference to the popular TV series The Jeffersons, whose theme song began "We're movin' on up/to the East Side".
- In the comic, Echidnaopolis is shown to be a massive city that encompass the entirety of the Floating Island. Later material show that the city is much smaller.
This issue has been reprinted in the following places:
- Sonic Archives Vol. 9
- Sonic Legacy Book 2
- "To 'Bot or Not to 'Bot!" was reprinted in Sonic Super Digest #3
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