|“||Saving the world? You? Don't make me laugh. You're weak. And you know what makes you weak? Your loyalty to your pathetic friends. You're not going through that portal...I'm gonna show you just how weak you are!||„|
|~ Shadow before his fight in Rise of Lyric.|
|“||Your shoddy craftsmanship brings shame on all hedgehogkind. And for that, you shall perish.||„|
|~ Shadow arrogantly claims that Sonic's existence is an insult to their species.|
Shadow the Hedgehog is a major antagonist in the Sonic Boom spin-off franchise, serving as a supporting antagonist in Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric, an anti-hero in Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal and a recurring antagonist in the television series. He is the rival of Sonic the Hedgehog, who seeks to prove his superiority over him in every way. He is also notably darker and more evil than his mainstream counterpart.
He is voiced by Kirk Thornton in English and by Kōji Yusa in Japanese.
In the Games
Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric
Shadow is first seen silently watching Dr. Eggman and Metal Sonic from a distance at Lyric's tomb, which Team Sonic had been trapped inside, before leaving. Much later into the game, Shadow confronts Sonic and Tails at the Abandoned Research Facility, refusing to let them use a portal to travel to the past so they could save the world from Lyric, engaging them in combat.
In the first phase of his battle, Shadow attacks by charging at Sonic and Tails while glowing with energy, and then firing numerous energy blasts, which leave him open for attack. After this, Sonic pushes Shadow through the portal, which, due to not being calibrated, takes their battle to the Ice Age. For the second phase of the fight, Shadow repeats his attack pattern, yet adds the attack of tossing his Chaos Spears across the battle field. Once low on health, Shadow kicks Tails through the portal, taking them to Prehistoric times. This time, Shadow adds his teleportation and Chaos Blast to his attacks, and his Chaos Spears now explode.
Shadow is then defeated by Sonic, who kicks him through the portal to the "near future", which is later revealed to be after Team Sonic defeats Lyric. Shadow, although prepared to fight again, gives Team Sonic his approval upon seeing the defeated Lyric, and walks away, chuckling.
Sonic Boom: Shattered Crystal
Prior to the game, Shadow caught Lyric while he was evacuating an area. While not objecting to Lyric's dark sense of justice when he brought up seizing the Lost Crystal of Power, Shadow openly refused to work for Lyric, resulting in the snake taking control of him with a mind control device.
When Team Sonic arrives in Shadow Canyons, they spot Shadow, who runs off. Team Sonic goes after Shadow, who then confronts them in a race. Sonic knocks Shadow unconscious, and when he wakes up, he is freed from Lyric's mind control device. As Tails analyzes the Mind Control device, a hologram of Lyric appears and warns Team Sonic not to cross him, and Shadow threatens Lyric to come face him. Lyric refuses, and Shadow leaves to chase after Lyric on his own.
Towards the end of the game, Shadow finds Lyric as he is about to destroy Team Sonic with his cannon, and disables his weapon. Shadow then kicks Lyric out of a trapdoor that Sonic opened, sending him to his death. While Team Sonic agrees that their teamwork made a difference, Shadow laughs and calls them pathetic before leaving, noting that he is Sonic's superior.
In the TV Series
In "It Takes A Village To Defeat A Hedgehog", Shadow is invited to join Team Eggman, and does so out of the desire to destroy Sonic. When he arrives, Eggman immediately begins sucking up to Shadow, holding him in very high regards and remarking that he's "the second most popular character in the entire canon". However, once Eggman forces the villains to perform team building exercises, Shadow refuses to participate and teleports away, annoyed, stating that the only ability any of the villains have is wasting time.
Later, when Sonic begins to fight off Eggman, Shadow knocks him to the ground and calls out Eggman for being incapable of beating Sonic, even with lots of help. While Shadow and Sonic duel, Eggman becomes excited at the idea of Shadow actually joining his team, and follows their battle. Shadow unintentionally destroys the cabinet that Team Sonic had been working on all day, and states that Sonic's shoddy craftsmanship brings shame to all hedgehogs, and that he will perish for it. True to his words, Shadow knocks Sonic into the air and smashes him back into the ground. However, Eggman idiotically blinds Shadow using his camera's flash, allowing Sonic to recover and knock Shadow down. Enraged, Shadow berates Eggman for his incompetence and tells Sonic that they will fight again, but on his terms, before teleporting away.
In "Where Have All the Sonics Gone?", Morpho changes into Shadow while displaying his shapeshifting abilities.
In "Eggman the Videogame: Part 1", in order to get good motion capture footage of someone who can fight Team Sonic for his new videogame, Eggman finds Shadow and requests him to team up to fight Sonic. However, Shadow refuses, not wanting to work with Eggman again after last time. Because of this, Eggman approaches Sonic and tries to record him insulting Shadow, although Sonic doesn't say anything bad about him, forcing Eggman to manipulate the footage to convince Shadow that Sonic was trash-talking him. Enraged, Shadow attacks the village and defeats Knuckles, Tails, Amy and Sticks, all while Eggman gleefully records it. Sonic then arrives, and Shadow knocks him through three palm trees and a wall, asking him is he has any last words.
In "Eggman the Videogame: Part 2", Sonic throws Shadow off of his guard by saying the phrase "Volcano Wonder Pants" and continues to fight with him. Soon enough, Eggman becomes content with his footage and heads back to his lair to program his game, leaving Sonic and Shadow to continue fighting. Unbeknownst to Eggman, Sonic made Shadow realize that Eggman had manipulated the footage he recorded, and Shadow heads to his lair to make him pay for manipulating him, not wanting him to make him look like an idiot. Shadow attempts to break into Eggman's lair, although the lair's teleportation guard keep him out. As Shadow begins to break down the door, Eggman retreats, leaving Orbot and Cubot to stall him, although Shadow merely destroys them and chases after Eggman using his rocket-propelled shoes.
In order to get away from Shadow, Eggman, using Morpho's portal gun, transports himself to an alternate dimension, where he tricks Lord Eggman into taking his place. After being tackled by Shadow, Lord Eggman realizes that he had been tricked, and allows Sonic and Shadow to go to his dimension using his portal gun. Back in Lord Eggman's dimension, Eggman unleashes Metal Sonic on Sonic and Shadow, who he had upgraded using the footage he recorded. Sonic and Shadow fight Metal Sonic to a standstill, causing Eggman to fire a rocket at them, which knocks the portal gun out of his Eggmobile and causes it to create a portal that sends them all back to their dimension. Back in their regular dimension, Sonic and Shadow continue fighting with Metal Sonic and Eggman, Metal Sonic eventually gaining the upper hand and blasting Shadow into a rooftop, taking him out of the fight.
Once Metal Sonic is defeated, Shadow tells Team Sonic that he is no longer satisfied with only getting revenge on Eggman, but now wants revenge on the entire universe, revealing that he had kidnapped and placed Lord and Doctor Eggman in a secret location. Tails states that, if the two Eggmans are in the same dimension for long enough, they could cause a catastrophic anomaly that could destroy the universe, and Shadow reveals that that is his intention before teleporting away. However, Team Sonic manages to find the Eggmans in Shadow's cave and send Lord Eggman back to his dimension, saving the universe and foiling Shadow's plan. Shadow teleports to his cave and tells Sonic that, while he isn't impressed with the results, he is impressed with him for saving the universe. Once again, Shadow states that he will return, only on his terms.
Shadow is a very cold outsider. He comes off as arrogant, ruthless and uncaring, believing that he is superior to others, especially Sonic, and will let nothing stand in the way of his goals, whatever they may be. He secretly envies Sonic. Aggressive to the extreme, he is perfectly willing and able to kill or otherwise seriously injure his foes. He also believes that justice (or at least his justice) must be delivered at any cost. Despite how brutal he can be, Shadow still usually holds a calm and collected attitude and sticks firmly to his goals, never resting until they are fulfilled.
Shadow is also fiercely independent. He openly despises working with others, whether they are on his side or not, and does not like collaboration unless it works towards his own goals. This is best seen in "It Takes a Village To Defeat A Hedgehog", where Shadow was willing to work with Team Eggman to fight Sonic, yet abandoned the group when he deemed them weak and incapable (although, ironically, their teamwork and collaboration was relatively efficient when they attacked Team Sonic). As a true testimate to his rogue-attitude, Shadow (or at least in Rise of Lyric) believes that friendship is a weakness that holds others back and makes them weak, and chooses to seclude himself from others to avoid this. As per his reasoning of hating friendship, Shadow is a large Social Darwinist, although he will compliment or at least acknowledge strength when he sees it. He also has no patience for jokes or foolishness and no problem with voicing his distaste of and criticizing others.
One of his most notable traits, Shadow is an incredibly vengeful person. If somebody, like Lyric, Eggman or Sonic, wrongs him, he will relentlessly track them down and seek to get revenge for what ever they did. Shadow will give absolute punishment to anyone over anything, minor or major, and will expand his vengeance to include people who did nothing to him, like Orbot, Cubot and the rest of Team Sonic. The most extreme case of this is shown in the aforementioned "Eggman the Videogame: Part 2", in which he decides to destroy the entire universe after being repeatedly tricked by Eggman. He thinks his universe is pathetic.
Powers and Abilities
- Enhanced Physiology: Shadow has access to a variety of different enhanced abilities.
- Super Speed: Shadow's most prominent ability, he is one of the fastest characters in the Sonic Boom universe. While it is unknown just how fast he can go, he is almost, if not just as fast as Sonic. At the least, he is apparently fast enough to kidnap Doctor and Lord Eggman, tie them up, take them to his cave across the island and return to the village without anyone even noticing that he had left.
- Superhuman Strength: Shadow, while not as strong as someone like Knuckles, is capable of great feats of strength, like punching Sonic numerous feet into the air and then kicking him down with enough force to create a crater, or knocking him through several trees and a stone wall.
- Superhuman Stamina: Shadow rarely ever shows signs of tiring when running or when in combat for an extended period of time.
- Superhuman Endurance: Shadow can endure a lot of punishment, getting right back up after being knocked into a house by Sonic's spindash or falling from high heights unscathed. Possibly his greatest feat of durability was taking a blast from Metal Sonic, which also blasted his through a roof, and presumably getting right back up.
- High Reflexes: Shadow can react to attacks as quick as they come, dodging numerous punches from Knuckles and a swing of Amy's hammer approaching him from the back.
- Chaos Powers: Shadow has a variety of "Chaos" attacks he can use.
- Energy Blasts: Shadow can fire several energy blasts that home in on his opponents.
- Chaos Spear: Shadow scatters numerous spears into the ground, which damage Sonic upon contact. Additionally, the spears can also explode.
- Chaos Blast: Shadow unleashes a massive wave of Chaos energy that surrounds the arena, although doing so notably tires him out.
- Teleportation: A frequently used ability of his, Shadow can teleport great or short distances. He notably uses this ability to enhance his fighting skills and make it harder for someone to fight him in return, evading their attacks and countering or simply confusing and tiring them out. In the TV Series, whenever he teleports, he also leaves behind a small cloud of grey smoke.
- In many ways, Shadow's personality and character can be considered to be a parody of his original counterpart's, particularly in the Sonic Boom TV Series.
- According to Alan Denton, during the writing process of Sonic Boom's first season, it was decided that Shadow would not be included, as he would have to be used in a way that didn't make him look stupid or goofy. After a lot of work, he was included in "It Takes A Village To Defeat A Hedgehog".
- In the Japanese version of Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric, it was revealed that Shadow was being controlled by Lyric through a mind control chip in his head. It is unknown why this was not present in any other version of the game.
- Ironically, many critics and fans alike complained about Shadow's role in the game and lack of motivation for wanting to intercept Sonic, and the idea of him being mind controlled by Lyric would have made both factors apparent.
- Because of his more aggressive personality compared to his original counterpart, Shadow's characterization is often criticized in both the Sonic Boom games and the TV show, due to a lack of an origin story and character development and being an outright villain rather than an anti-hero like in the mainstream series.
- Filmmaker Junko Miyamoto claims Shadow as her favorite character in the show, the only reason she watches it, and "how to do a teenaged villain correctly." She has done a few fanmade Sonic Boom episodes with Team Sonic and Shadow as the sole characters; as well as an unofficial spinoff series of shorts with Shadow as the main character, in which he does several villainous acts. She shows these shorts at film festivals.
- Shadow is the only antagonist in the TV Show to succeed in defeating not only just Sonic, but all of his friends. He has actually beaten Sonic twice, with the only fight Shadow lost to Sonic in the Show being due to outside interference (which neither Sonic nor his friends were part of or responsible for).