Monday, July 10, 2017

Added Detail - Added Coolness

Main Announcement:
There will be NO SonicGear update for the following week. (It is skipping a week) That would be July 16 the expected date, that it won't appear on. But it is only skipping just that, it'll keep going as more stuff is flowing in.

Added Detail & Item of the Week:
Sonic Cup with Emerald Ice Cubes
This cup is extra fun because it has those re-use ice cubes in it. Items are just SO MUCH better when they go that extra mile and aren't just "Sonic imagery is stamped on some random generic thing". The hat this week is another ok example of this, where it has the patch and then also the logo.

I'm not sure if it's just my unique perspective via merchandise site, or if everyone shares it/adds this much importance to companies really paying attention to design and detail. Of course, seeing the same stock art a zillion times is more tiring than someone who's just out there noticing Sonic whenever. Still, it can hope that everyone appreciates the extra mile.

Spencers is Back
Hot Topic seems to be out of Sonic stuff, but Spencers' (oddly) seems to be ramping up for another season of Sonic merch. Spencers' is a point of some contention because they got really into weed/pot and porn-type stuff which totally doesn't go with Sonic, so everyone felt they were moving away from him...but it seems not when they're breaking out this level of new merch.

Hot Topic?
Yes, it still has SOME Sonic stuff, but nothing exclusive. The Hello Kitty crossover stuff should be either there or online (and its costly) along with Boom Keychains & the GE Cups/Lunch Tin type stuff. Nice to have it kept available, but it's not anything new.

Another Year of Party:
The party supplies for 2017 are also another good sign. They're modern, and they're not Boom. It looks like the Boom Embargo is still in the process of lifting. Their timing is a bit odd though, because usually party supplies "last forever" (ex. many years) on shelves with the same ones being produced without updating. Still, this seems a good thing, they're nicely designed & inexpensive.

What about Archie?
This is the question on a lot of minds (because people are on the Archie email list that sends mail like almost daily--and keeps never mentioning Sonic any more, when it used to always do it) It also is conspicuous now in its absence from...well anything related to comic book stores. Some alternate covers were also marked 'cancelled'. So what's actually going on?

As far as anyone knows:
Archie is trying to "ReFocus on JUST ARCHIE" which, obviously "Sonic" is not a part of.
Archie is fighting with Sega over money to keep going BECAUSE of Archie's spending to fight with Ken Penders Lawsuit.

They can't afford a big spend on 2 fronts.
Archie the brand itself AND all comic books aren't doing as well as they used to. Individual issues are pricey, online stuff is 'more entertaining', and 'not as many people buy/get into comics'...all the usual problems you read about are taking blame. They're fighting it with the Archie Live Action tv show (which seems to do ok?) but you can def. see how they'd want to 'focus in on archie', it makes sense*.

*So why did they ever get Sonic anyway?
I never understood how Archie got a hold of or wanted the Sonic property. They did ok-enough with it, but it just seemed odd they'd choose him. Would another company have handled him better or worse? There's no telling at this point. Why did it last so long/keep going? 2 words: Sonic Fans. If ever there's a diehard loyal fandom, it's Sonic fans. They may complain louder than a 747, but boy do they ever buy stuff in a loyal way to get all of it. It's the ONLY way the book lasted through its confounding/bizarre periods that would have killed other books. It also lasted through all the absolutely horrible art at the start too, simply because of fans. It kept getting AND taking the chances that it needed to improve.

Next *time* (remember, skips a week) update:
More USA stuff, most likely & the good bit is that it's new. Hopefully we also start getting some actual new art and new real designed stuff.