Sonic Sat AM

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
In case you didn't get the memo, he's the fastest thing alive.

Blue streak, speeds by; Sonic the Hedgehog
Too fast for the naked eye, Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic - He can really move!
Sonic - He's got an attitude!
Sonic - He's the fastest thing alive!
He's the fastest thing alive!

He's the fastest thing alive!

Sonic The Hedgehog is the more serious Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon adaptation made in the 90s, which inspired the Archie Comics series that went on till 2017 (though the comic book came to the consumers first). It is very a sharp contrast to its contemporary and much more comedic weekday counterpart where Sonic was a drifter traveling the planet with Tails. Also known as SatAM (as in Saturday Morning, when it aired on the American ABC network), to distinguish it from AoSTH (which was in syndication on weekdays) and the games alike.

The series featured Sonic as a resistance commando, fighting against Dr. Julian Ivo Robotnik, a dictator who has already enslaved most of the planet Mobius and turned it into a cold, urban, metal nightmare. Unlike other versions of the character, Robotnik's armies are comprised of factory-assembled robot shock troops rather than from animals trapped in robot shells; said trapped animals underwent Unwilling Roboticisation and served as forced laborers instead. Also, Sonic is not the actual leader of the resistance group, but serves as their most reliable soldier. The leader, Sally Acorn, lost her father, while Sonic lost his uncle as one of the mindless robots. The show dealt with much more mature subject matters than other parts of the Sonic franchise, (as well as most mainstream Western Cartoons in general) such as coping with loss and the trials of war.

Despite being an In Name Only adaptation, the series is still highly regarded by its fans and is critically acclaimed, though to a degree that in recent years has caused a great deal of friction within the notoriously broken wider Sonic fanbase over how much of its style (if any) should be adopted by modern Sonic works.[2] Ironically enough, the one time Sega tried to make this series into a SpinOff game, it was canceled.

In addition to the aforementioned Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, this show also should not be confused with the other western animated series Sonic Underground, the Anime Sonic X, or the OVA Sonic the Hedgehog The Movie.

Tropes used in Sonic Sat AM include:
  • Action Girl: Bunnie, Sally, and Dulcy.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Dr Robotnik was already a villain in the games, but even in installments at the time was portrayed as somewhat clownish and whimsical (despite the West's best attempts to harden him up). In the show however, he is a sadistic overlord of Mobius and, for the most part, taken dead seriously. He leans slightly closer to his original counterpart in later episodes, but is still a much more repulsive character.
  • Armies Are Evil: General (Dr.) Robotnik and his initially "defensive" army of SWATbots.
  • Affably Evil: Ixis Naugus.
  • Aliens Speaking English: Along with some instances of Antoine speaking French.
  • And I Must Scream: Roboticized victims remain fully aware of everything they do while under Robotnik's control. As Uncle Chuck states when restored: "we just can't do anything about it."
  • Anti-Hero: Type III, Sonic is.
  • Apocalypse How: Type 2, steadily progressing to type 4, with Mobians replacing humans.
  • Arc Words: At the end of "The Void", King Max tells Sonic "Take care of her" when he refers to Sally. In "Spyhog" Uncle Chuck tells Sally "Take care of him" when he refers to Sonic.
  • Art Shift: Many character designs were changed for the second season, if even just slightly (like giving Bunnie pupils) or drastically (looking at Rotor, you wouldn't recognize him from season one to season two).
    • Also, while during season 1 the animators seemed much more concerned with their artwork keeping with the show's "realistic" physics. In season 2, although the characters seem more artistically complete, the focus on smaller details falters. Not quite Off-Model, more like Off-Scenery. Shading, actual muscle movements, and realistic ("gritty") fragmentation effects on the backgrounds as lasers hit walls are all examples.
  • Ascended Extra: Three of the original Freedom Fighters are based upon the small animals released in Sonic 1: Sally Acorn is a squirrel and Rotor is a walrus, both found in Marble Zone, while Bunnie Rabbot is a rabbit (found in Green Hill Zone), though both Bunnie and Rotor had different names and one of them a different gender from the original cast Sally was in.
  • Ascended Fridge Horror: Done with the concept of roboticization.
  • Badass: Most of the Freedom Fighters.
  • Badass Adorable: Bunnie and at the end of the second season, Tails.
  • Badass Mustache: Dr. Robotnik.
  • Bad Boss: Robotnik.
  • Badbutt: Sonic and Bunnie, completely with some "fake cursing".
  • Battle Couple: Sonic and Sally.
  • Big Brother Mentor: Sonic, for Tails.
  • Big Eater: Sonic.
  • Big No: Sally getting roboticized (in Sonic's bad dream) in "Sonic's Nightmare". Robotnik also gives these out a couple odd times he is foiled.
  • Blue Eyes: Sally, Antoine, and Snively all had these.
  • Bond One-Liner: Sonic, occasionally.
  • Boobs of Steel: Bunnie.
  • Bragging Theme Tune: The opening theme song.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: The end of the season 2 premiere episode ends by Sonic grabbing the iris-out.
  • Breather Episode: "Fed Up With Antoine"/"Ghost Busted" and "The Odd Couple/Robo-Becca".
  • Brother Chuck: Cluck and Muttski
  • Brought Down to Normal: "Super Sonic".
  • Bullet Seed: Roboticized Muttsky.
  • Butt Monkey: Antoine and Snively.
  • Can't Catch Up: Antoine to Sonic, both literally and figuratively. He was nowhere near as fast or competent as Sonic, and despite his efforts, he couldn't make Sally admire him as much as she does Sonic.
  • Captain Crash: Dulcy.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: While not as frequently so as the AoStH Robotnik, he is inclined to boast about his evilness as if it's something to be proud of, especially in the company of those he believes are evil.

Robotnik: I want the location of Lazar's lair. Name your prize.
Lazar's guardian: You intend harm to my master.
Robotnik: Oh, you wound me dear guardian! I merely want to wake the grand wizard and honor his evilness! We have much in common.
Lazar's guardian: ... yes. I can see that.

  • Cassandra Truth: Tails in "Sonic and Sally".
    • Sally after she travels back in time and tries to convince her father than Julian is evil.
    • A less serious example in "Spyhog". Antoine genuinely did rescue Sally during a mission, but he plays up the story so much as he's retelling it that it's no wonder Sonic didn't believe him.
  • Catch Phrase:
  • Chaste Toons: Robotnik, with his nephew Snively, qualifies for this.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Most Stealth Orbs (floating security cameras) in Season 1.
  • Cheese Eating Surrender Monkey: Post-Retcon Antoine.
  • Child Soldier: The Freedom Fighters.
  • Cliff Hanger
  • Cool Big Sis: Sally and Bunnie to Tails.
  • Cool Old Guy: Uncle Chuck.
  • Covers Always Lie: The art promo of the series on Netflix. It's the dvd boxart of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog volume 1, which also has that show's version of Robotnik, Scratch and Grounder on it. The only thing there from this show is the logo and Lazaar's guardian in the background.
  • Criminal Amnesiac: Sonic is this in "No Brainer."
  • Cursed with Awesome: Bunnie Rabbot, who lost half of her body and gained super strength in the process.
  • Cute Bruiser: Bunnie.
  • Cut Short: The series ended on a cliffhanger in which Dr. Robotnik appeared to have died but his increasingly dissatisfied henchman Snively has plans to usurped his place as the series' primary antagonist, revealing a threatening new foe, shown out of the darkness with menacing red eyes. Whoever this new character was, viewers never found out, as the series was abruptly cancelled. Writer Ben Hurst revealed his plans for a third season where the mysterious red eyes belonged to Naugus, a minor villain featured earlier in the series and a former partner of Dr. Robotnik. The intended story was adapted by the Archie comics, but because the comic strove to merge the other (often conflicting) versions of the franchise, it fell short of serving as a pseudo-conclusion for Sonic SatAM.
    • Another thing that Hurst revealed is that Knuckles was supposed to appear at the end of that never to be made third season and was going to be more of a main character for an also never made fourth season.
  • Cyber Cyclops: The SWATbots.
  • Cyberpunk: The world has become a industrial nightmare, and cybernetics has transformed society. Young streetwise punks flaunt the law, conducting guerrilla raids to overthrow a corrupt government. Coming off the heels of the 1980's, it's no surprise that this show would feature these themes.
    • Post Cyber Punk: Despite how bad things have become, the heroes are trying to save the world. About as far as the anti-heroes of cyberpunk can be.
  • Darker and Edgier: There were only two games, four counting the Game Gear ones, so there wasn't much to adapt. The writers took certain ideas from the games and ran with them.
    • Watching the pilot episode makes the series itself seem like this. Much of the animation in the pilot (particularly Sally and Bunnie) had a much brighter, softer look than the actual show.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Most characters have their moments of this, but Sonic, Sally, and Snively were the most prominent examples.
  • Demoted to Extra: Since this show has a full cast of characters, soon-to-become iconic sidekick Tails is reduced to minor character status. Also, Bunnie and Rotor get smaller roles in season 2. However, Tails may have become an Ascended Extra in a couple of episodes of the first season and toward the end of the second season.
  • Depending on the Writer: Writing duties for the first season were handed to several people, meaning occasional slight inconsistancies in character portrayals and what not (particularly Sonic himself). For the second season, most episodes were written by Ben Hurst, meaning a more consistent depiction (if still one occasionally rather different to previous writers).
  • Despotism Justifies the Means: Robotnik has turned most of Mobius into an industrial waste and a huge amount of it's population into unsentient drones so as to maintain his power over the planet.
  • Determinator: Antoine, Sonic, Sally, and Robotnik have traces of this.
  • Disappeared Dad: Sally's father King Max, who is trapped in the void.
  • Damsel in Distress: Though a competent Freedom Fighter, Sally falls under this role a few odd occasions (she is a princess after all). Antoine also plays a comical male variant on occasion.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Occasionally, Tails seems to be rather easily diverted. See link at 8:34...
  • Dodge the Bullet: Sonic throughout Season 1.
  • Doomed Hometown: Mobotropolis.
  • The Ditz: Dulcy. Bunnie to a lesser extent on occasion as well.
  • Downer Ending: "Ultra Sonic", "Warp Sonic", and "The Void".
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Sally, Bunnie and Antoine do this in one episode in Season 1, to less-than-desirable results. They do it again in season 2 with better results.
  • Dumb Muscle: Dulcy.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: The pilot episode, "Heads or Tails", has several noteworthy differences from the series proper:
    • Robotnik has a pet robot chicken named Cluck. Cluck also appears in the show's opening sequence, but after that he's never seen again.
    • Sally has pink fur and black hair, rather than the brown fur and hair she has in the rest of the show.
    • NICOLE is a computer monitor on a wheeled stand, rather than a handheld computer.
    • Buzzbombers appear in this episode, attacking Knothole, making them the only actual enemies from the games to appear in this series. They are never seen again.
    • The overall coloring and animation is brighter and lighter.
    • The episode's title doesn't have the word "Sonic" in it (though that naming scheme was dropped in the second season anyway).
    • Rotor is purple rather than blue. Archie Comics would keep Rotor purple for their adaptation.
  • Egopolis: Robotropolis, formerly Mobotropolis.
  • Epic Fail: Antoine's martial arts training.
  • Episode Title Card
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: Sally.
  • Everything Sounds Sexier in French: This is the reason Ro-becca is so obsessed with Antoine.
  • Evil Counterpart: Naugus to Lazar.
  • Evil Laugh: Snively gave an crazy one when he believed that Robotnik died with the Doomsday Project, and the being with the red eyes in the end also gave a creepy chuckle too.
  • Evil Overlord: Robotnik.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: Robotnik.
  • Expository Theme Tune: Quoted above.
  • Fake Frenchman: Antoine, as voiced by Rob Paulsen.
  • Fan of the Underdog: Tails is the only one who can bear Antoine's self aggrandizing stories. Sally also seems to defend Ant at times, if more out of pity.

Sally: Come on Sonic, Antoine has his good points.
Sonic: You mean besides his head?
Sally: *thinks desperately* Errrr...he has a nice haircut.

  • Fat Bastard: Dr. Robotnik.
  • Faux Affably Evil: The show's rendition of Robotnik is for the large part far more menacing and horrific than his more whimsical games counterpart. He retains a sarcastic wit however and goofy traits do seep through every now and then.
  • Fiery Redhead: Sally has her moments of this.
  • Fighter Launching Sequence: Stealth Bots.
  • Five-Man Band
  • Forbidden Zone: Simply labelled as such, it's a hazardous slum of Robotropolis where the wizard Lazaar rested.
  • Functional Magic: Lazaar and Naugus. Arguably Sonic, through his use of the Deep Power Stones and Power Rings.
  • Furry Fandom: At least partially due to the Parent Service, this is popular among the subculture. Particularly the character Sally Acorn, who is the subject of a lot of fan art.
  • Genius Bruiser: Rotor, who was the smartest and one of the strongest members of the Freedom Fighters.
  • Genre Savvy: Robotnik, especially when compared to his other-continuity counterparts. At one point, Sonic attempts to "surrender"; Robotnik instantly smells a rat, and immediately orders him into the roboticizer.
    • In "Sonic's Nightmare" Robotnik tries to shoot Sonic and the gang with a missile launcher from his cloaked stealthpod after his main ship crashed. If it wasn't so damaged from Sonic weaponizing an oil derrick against the ship, he could've won.
    • In "Spyhog", Robotnik immediately realized that Sonic's presence was just to distract his troops so that the other Freedom Fighters could sabotage the fuel convoy they had been guarding.
  • Gilligan Cut:

Sonic: Well this hedgehog's never giving up!
Sonic: I give up! Suckers!

  • Good Bad Girl: Bunnie is the Y-7 version of this. She's flirty and wears a revealing outfit, but she's as kind-hearted as they come.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: Dulcy and Lupe's names, which mean "sweet" and "wolf" respectively.
  • Green Rocks: The Deep Power Stones and the Power Rings.
  • Gross Up Close-Up: Only one example, but a memorable one, found in "Sonic Conversion".

Robotnik: Snively, what color is my heart?

  • Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow: Snively used to have long wavy hair before a time-traveling Sonic accidentally blew it off.
  • Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Most of the good guys are missing clothing in some way.
  • Hartman Hips: Sally, depending on the artist.
  • Headbutting Heroes: Sonic and Antoine, constantly snarking or arguing with each other or competing for Sally's affections. As Sally once pointed out, should one get captured, the other likely wouldn't even lift a finger if she didn't lecture them enough.
  • Heel Face Turn: Snively was going to become this and join the Freedom Fighters in the lost third season.
  • Heroes Want Redheads: Princess Sally Acorn.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Cat in the first episode, Ari in "Game Guy" and Uncle Chuck in "Blast To The Past Part 2."
  • Heroic Willpower: How Uncle Chuck ultimately breaks free of Robotnik's control.
  • Higher-Tech Species: Humans to Mobians.
  • Hollywood Cyborg: Bunnie was rescued when she was partially converted into a robot; she retained her free will and gained Super Strength in the bargain.
  • Honorary Uncle: Tails calls Sally "Aunt Sally," Bunnie "Aunt Bunnie", and everyone calls Sonic's uncle "Uncle Chuck."
  • Horrible Judge of Character: King Acorn didn't know Julian was evil, and took a lot of convincing before he figured it out (too late).
    • Not really an example, as Julian did put on a convincing act, and being instrumental in winning the Great War for the Mobians probably earned him a few brownie points as well. Until the King left earshot long enough for Julian to talk about his plans, the main reason viewers know that he's evil is that they already know what he eventually becomes.
  • Humanoid Female Animal: All of the females except Dulcy.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: Robotnik is pretty damn evil. Snively isn't any better.
  • An Ice Person: Dulcy, who can shoot ice beams through her nose.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Every episode in Season 1 (except for the pilot, "Heads or Tails") had "Sonic" in the title. Super Sonic, Ultra Sonic, Hooked on Sonics, etc.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Bunnie Rabbot.
  • Implied Death Threat: Sums up Robotnik's relationship with Snively. In one episode, he threatens to turn Snively into a paperweight.
  • In a Single Bound: Sonic, more than once.
  • In Name Only: The only thing this show has in common with the games is Sonic, Tails and Robotnik who, even then, barely resemble the games characters in personality and in Robotnik's case both personality and appearance.
  • Insult Backfire: When Robotnik orders Bunnie shot with a paralyzing ray in "Super Sonic":

Sally: You are a miserable creep, Robotnik.
Robotnik: Why thank you, princess.

    • And again in "Blast To The Past":

Chuck: You're pure scum, Julian.
Robotnik: Why thank you.

Robotnik: Shut up, Snively.

  • Sketchy Successor: Robotnik gets the job of dictator of Mobius by kicking the previous ruler into another dimension. He then proceeds to turn Mobius into a polluted, mechanical wasteland where he alone gets to live in luxury (barring his nephew Snively, who while being regularly put down is at least not actively hunted.)
  • Skunk Stripe: Lupe has one in her hair.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Antoine. Sonic and Robotnik as well, even if they have far more valid reasons for it.
    • Played with at the end of "Drood Henge", when Sonic was playing up how great the Batman Gambit that stopped Robotnik's plan of the episode was. When Sally calls him out on being egotistical, Sonic simply points out that plan wasn't even his, it was thought up by Tails.
  • Smooch of Victory: Sally gives these all the time.
  • Smug Snake: Dr. Robotnik in the second season, as his overconfidence and increasing obsession with Sonic begins to hinder his plots (as well as becoming slightly more comical and bumbling in tone). His nephew, Snively, also counts.
  • Smug Super: Sonic likes to talk about his amazing speed and stealth a lot.
  • Southern Belle: Bunnie.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Variation: In the episode "Game Guy" Ari gets sucked into The Void. A book called Sonic: Friend or Foe was made based on this episode, and in it Ari escapes with Sonic unharmed.
  • Spell Book: Subverted by Lazaar, who used a computer of magic spells, which is functionally identical beyond the user interface.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Sally and Antoine join Sonic in the large majority of missions in the second season.
  • Spot the Imposter: The episode "Sonic and Sally"
  • Stalker with a Crush: Ro-becca.
  • The Starscream: Snively in Season Two. More The Renfield in Season One.
  • Straw Loser: All the Freedom Fighters have noticable flaws, Sonic in particular is incredibly arrogant and prone to endanger the team in his recklessness or lack of tact. Antoine however, is a bastion of negative human qualities and has few redeeming ones to compensate. In general, if one character has a flaw, Antoine has it tens times more.
  • Stupid Evil: Robotnik. While much more Genre Savvy in the first season, later on, his sadistic tendencies seem to get in the way with many of his plans.
  • Suddenly Always Knew That: Bunnie's treatment in "Sonic and Sally", as before this she seemed to not be a fighter.
  • Super Soldier: The SWATbots in season 1.
  • Super Speed: Sonic. Sally in the last episode, as she used the Deep Power Stones along with Sonic.
  • Super Strength: Bunnie.
  • Sure Why Not: The SatAM nickname made it onto the cover of the DVD boxset.
  • Tagalong Kid: Tails to a degree, but not to the extent he was in the games.
    • Begins to be averted in "Drood Henge", in which he revealed that Sally taught him some hacking skills, and he proved himself to be resourceful, clever, and great at coming up with plans.
  • Talented Princess, Regular Guy: Played with. While Sonic's Super Speed make a big difference on his side, he is somewhat average in terms of intellect and talent without his powers to back him up (though he can get down with the electric guitar). Sally on the other hand is a Badass Normal with incredible hacking and computing skills, almost as good a mechanic as Rotor and a trusted tactitian. As a final insult she actually outdoes the "Regular Guy" in snarkiness too.
  • Teen Genius: Sally and Rotor.
  • Teens Are Short: Most of the main teenage group of Freedom Fighters are dwarfed by other older groups. Granted species may apply to this, but even then King Acorn is almost twice as the size of his sixteen year old daughter.
  • Tempting Fate: In Blast To The Past, after Robotnik's successful takeover of Mobotropolis, Snively informs him of present day Sonic's activities. With some careful contemplation, Robotnik dismisses him as a minor inconvenience, believing he's not worth the trouble.
  • That Man Is Dead: From Blast To The Past part 2:

King Acorn: You can't win this, Julian.
Robotnik: The name is no longer Julian; from this day forward, I am Robotnik.

"Get that hedgehog! Get him! GET HIM!"

  1. Which is a Bragging Theme Tune.
  2. SEGA already tried their hand on the Darker and Edgier aspect of the series, but it only made things worse.