All the way back in 1993, you couldn't find a hotter character than Sonic the Hedgehog. SEGA had created a monster license in just two years, and everyone was scrambling to get a piece of the pie. That includes TV executives who were looking for their next hit.
Those who grew up in the 90s no doubt remember that there was not one, but two Sonic cartoons at the same time. There was the slapstick Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, alongside the darker Sonic the Hedgehog. These two shows started airing juts two weeks apart from one another, and many have wondered how that came to be. Today we finally get our answer.
DIC Executive Vice President of Creative Affairs, Robby London, talked to Polygon to explain how everything went down. DIC originally wanted to to have Sonic the Hedgehog air on a network an in syndication at the same time. ABC was interested in Sonic the Hedgehog, but Mark Pedowitz, former Senior Vice President of Business Affairs and Contracts at ABC, shot down the idea of syndication. He said the show would either air on their network or in syndication, but not both.
London was eager to find a way around this issue, which is what lead to Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. London figured that as long as the two shows were wildly different, no one would confuse them for one another, and the idea for syndication would be more palatable. The idea was taken back to ABC, and the network decided to go along with it.
Unfortunately, neither series garnered much in the way of popularity. Sonic the Hedgehog only ran for 26 episodes, while Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog fared better at 65. As we all know, Sonic would have many, many more cartoon adaptations as the years rolled on, and continues to dabble with animation to this day. While the original Sonic cartoons may not have set the world on fire, they were certainly an important stepping stone to where Sonic is today.