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Archie Sonic the Hedgehog Issue 38

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Sonic the Hedgehog
Publication Details


Date Published 

June 1996

Publishing Company 

Archie Comics

Production Staff
Cover Artist
  • Freddy Mendez-Gabrie
Managing Editor
  • Victor Gorelick
Editor in Chief
  • Richard Goldwater
First Appearances

Archie Sonic the Hedgehog Issue 38 was the thirty-eighth issue of the main Sonic the Hedgehog comic series.


Story One

"The Rise of Robotropolis...The Fall of Sonic!" - Part One

Following a devastating earthquake, a team of Freedom Fighters led by Sonic travels to Robotropolis to investigate the city's condition. Antoine, worried by the raging storm, suggests turning back, which Sonic agrees to since they have all the information they were looking for. Unfortunately, the group is then attacked by a squad of Combots, all of whom were previously thought destroyed. The Freedom Fighters engage their foes in a difficult battle, which is then interrupted as one of the Combots is destroyed by a bolt of lightning, creating an explosion that knocks Sonic unconscious. Antoine remains behind to watch Sonic, sending Tails to get the other Freedom Fighters.

"The Rise of Robotropolis...The Fall of Sonic!" - Part Two

Sally and the others arrive to find Sonic apparently recovered, and they quickly discuss the situation. Sonic attempts to speed off, but stumbles and then finds that he no longer possesses his super speed. Rotor theorizes that the explosion of the Combot must have caused the change, and NICOLE deduces that gathering several Power Rings might restore Sonic to normal. The group departs for Knothole, but are ambushed in the Great Forest by another group of Combots using cloaking devices. While his teammates are quickly subdued, Sonic is able to knock out one Combot with a Power Ring he already had, though the explosion knocks him into the nearby pool. The other Combots depart, convinced that Sonic has been destroyed.

"The Rise of Robotropolis...The Fall of Sonic!" - Part Three

Penelope Platypus saves Sonic from drowning, telling him that she and the rest of Sally's trainees saw the battle on a spy camera, and arrived in time to fish Sonic-and another Power Ring he collected-out of the pool. The pool of water is revealed to be the Lake of Rings and, determined to help his friends despite his still absent speed, Sonic leads his new team into Robotropolis. Meeting up with Fly Fly Freddy and the Robotropolis Spy Network, the group learns of a way to reach the trapped Freedom Fighters. After making their way along a narrow ledge, they make it into the lab where the Freedom Fighters are being held, only to find Robotnik and his Combots waiting for them.

With the Combots easily overwhelming Sally's trainees, Sonic pulls out another Power Ring he had kept in his backpack, but is still unable to regain his speed. He then spots a destroyed Combot torso with the Power Ring he previously discarded embedded in it, and grabs it in order to regain his speed. Thus restored, he defeats the Combots and frees his teammates before challenging Robotnik, only for the tyrant to escape and set off a bomb. The Freedom Fighters make it out without difficulty, determined to finish their struggle another day.

Story Two

"Bedtime Tails"

Tails checks up on Sonic, who has a terrible cold, and decides the best way to help his friend get better is to read him comic books. Tails reads Sonic a comic that he wrote himself, "Freedom Fighters", a parody of "The Fantastic Four" starring himself, Sonic, Rotor, and Sally. The group apparently gained superpowers after being exposed to galactic rays. One day, the Freedom Fighters are menaced by Robotnicus, a parody of Galactus, who wants to eat their planet. Sonic offers him a few boxes of "Twinkles" instead, and Robotnicus accepts. The Twinkles gave Robotnicus a stomach ache, and he retreated. Sonic is so bored by Tails' story that he falls asleep.

The next morning, Sonic has recovered from his cold, but Tails has caught it as well. Sonic decides to create his own comic book, "Bat-Sonic", and reads it to Tails.

Bonus Features

Pinup Pages

"Freedom Fighters Issue 3"

A parody of the cover of Fantastic Four Vol. 1 #3, with Sonic as Mr. Fantastic, Sally as the Invisible Woman, Rotor as The Thing, and Tails as The Human Torch.

"Bat-Sonic No. 164"

A parody Batman cover, with Sonic dressed as Batman and Tails dressed as Robin.

Gag Strips

Sonic-Grams Editorial Comic

The editor stands in front of an audience in a Mecha Sonic costume, ready to talk about Mecha Madness, when he suddenly has a really bad itch. He runs away, trying to pull the costume off and scratch himself. Art by Patrick Spaziante.


  • Sonic: "Fire in the hole!"
  • Antoine: "Where ees thees hole?"
  • Tails: "It's going to be in your head if you don't move!"

Key Events

  • The Freedom Fighters learn that Robotnik has rebuilt the Combot models.
  • Sonic loses his speed when lightning strikes a nearby Combot, but regains it when he obtains three rings.

Background Information

  • Sonic's use of three Power Rings to recover his speed is similar to how he used three rings to overpower Robotnik's Roboticizer in the final episode of the animated series.

Cameos & References

  • Nack makes a brief cameo at the end of the first story, foreshadowing his appearance in the next issue.
  • Sonic briefly sings the Sonic SatAM theme song, wondering where he heard it before.
  • Robotnicus, like Robolactus from the Galaxy dimension, is a parody of Galactus.
  • The "Fantastic Freedom Fighters" comic and its plot in "Bedtime Tails" is a parody of Marvel Comics' Fantastic Four franchise.
  • The "Twinkles" snacks mentioned in the in Tails' comic book are a reference to Twinkies.
  • Unlike the "Freedom Fighters" pinup, "Bat-Sonic" is not a parody of the issue of Batman listed. Instead it is a parody of a famous Batman illustration by Carmine Infantino. The words on the cover, "The Dark Hog Returns", is also a reference to the Batman miniseries, The Dark Knight Returns.


  • Arlo is inconsistently presented in the issue, appearing in some panels and disappearing in others.

Reprint History

This issue has been reprinted in the following places:

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