Tangle and Whisper have been popular additions to the IDW’s Sonic the Hedgehog comic series. Here, they start their spin-off adventure. Can they stand on their own two feet without the need for the Blue Blur to run the story? Let’s find out!
- Tangle and Whisper issue 1
- IDW Publishing
- Story: Ian Flynn
- Art: Evan Stanley
- Colours: Matt Herms
This month, I got Cover A, which features is one of three done by issue artist Evan Stanley. Though it lacks the cool lighting effects of her Convention and Retailer Exclusive covers, it’s a really nice piece. In terms of the interior, Evan has always been consistent when it comes to Sonic, and this is no exception. The body shapes are dynamic, giving the actions scenes some extra oomph. Our two protagonists get a lot of focus in terms of expressions too. What I loved about that was she managed to capture the mood for both despite the vast difference in how they emote, with Tangle being over the top and Whisper being far more subdued.
Matt Herms continues his run of excellent work with the colours too here. In particular, I liked the way he used bolder tones for the characters compared to the lighter backgrounds, but without the difference getting so great that it felt disjointed as an overall piece. Great work. Also worthy of note is the edgy way the panels sit o the page, with slightly jagged edges giving it an almost printed-on feel. It’s an interesting style choice, but it works well.
As far as the story goes, we saw the first few pages in the free preview. The basic idea is that Whisper is chasing someone who looks like Sonic. Only it’s not Sonic, but a shapeshifting mercenary called Mimic. Tangle gets involved and by the end of the issue, the pair are getting ready for a showdown with the villain. It’s a simple set up, but it’s the little details that are making it for me.
For one, Mimic’s shapeshifting ability isn’t fully explained. What I did notice though is that the only two people he shifted into were Sonic and a girl he met while in town. We know he worked for Eggman, so at a guess, he would have come into contact with Sonic at some point. My guess is he can only shift into people he’s touched. That would mean that Tangle is a definite possible victim of the ability moving forward.
More interesting though is his link to Whisper. She’s been chasing him down for a while, and clearly not just because he’s running amok in the guise of Sonic. You see, we get to see a scene that was recorded by her mask. There, Mimic mentioned that Eggman found out one of the Diamond Cutters was still alive, and wouldn’t let him leave a job unfinished, after which he attacked Whisper with an army knife. Whisper also says that Mimic was a mercenary that betrayed his team and helped Eggman wipe them out.
Looking at what we know about Whisper already, it seems likely that she and Mimic were on the same team, and she’s the last surviving member other than himself. That would explain why she’s after him, how her mask is able to see through his disguises, and why she has a tough time trusting people these days. Her worry about letting Tangle get involved, despite them having worked together before, would also play into this. She knows how dangerous he is, and if she was a mercenary, perhaps she’s done things she’s not proud of too and doesn’t want Tangle to find out. It would also answer the question that Sonic posed during her debut: what did Eggman do to her?
Overall, this was a great start to the spin-off series. I love how much this has built Whisper already, Tangle continues to be a delight, and Mimic should be a good first foe for them. This is easily a 5 out of 5 release for me.