Cover art by Dave Manak and Jon D'Agostino

My partner Mike Kanterovich and I had just been given the go-ahead to develop a story introducing the new character featured on the SONIC 3 game cartridge, KNUCKLES THE ECHIDNA. Naturally, our first decision, regarding how we were going to write the new character, was a no-brainer. KNUCKLES may have been indigenous to the Australian wildback, and he may have the dreadlocks to do any Rastafarian proud, but he was most definitely a "dese"-"dem"-&-"dose" Brooklyn kind of guy. Which is exactly how we wrote him in our original script.

This decision was made all the more poignant when, while starting to construct the actual script, we learned of the passing of Jack Kirby, who was not only one of the greatest comic book creators ever, but also one of the seminal influences upon both Mike and myself. Without hesitation, we both agreed to dedicate this particular story in memory of Jack.

The main reason this particular story came into existence is that Sega wanted to promote its latest Sonic game cartridge, SONIC 3. That meant Mike and I had to incorporate elements from the game into the story, most of which are featured in Part One. (Part Two was devoted to tying up all the loose ends and resolving the story on a somewhat upbeat note.)

One interesting side note: As this issue was going to press, Sega decided they wanted the Knuckles story replaced with something else, as they hadn't decided what they were going to do with the echidna in the long-term. Fortunately, editor Scott Fulop put the situation in the correct perspective: if Sega wanted so drastic a change made at the witching hour, they would to bear the responsibility for the costs. Shortly afterwards, Mike and I offered up a sequel, as we were itching to do more with Knuckles, which was originally scheduled for SONIC #20. Unfortunately, Sega nixed any sequels for a few more months until they finally relented, giving us the go-ahead for the SONIC & KNUCKLES SPECIAL.

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For those of you wishing to purchase SONIC #13 if you're unable to find a copy at your favorite store, go to ORIGINAL ART & MORE for further information.

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