Our first look at Sonic the Hedgehog's live-action movie has raised some questions (and spawned some nightmarish fan art)

We currently live in a reality where Soulja Boy is selling bootleg consoles and a live-action Sonic the Hedgehog movie is being brought to you by people who worked on The Fast and the Furious franchise and Deadpool. This morning, Paramount Pictures unveiled a glimpse of what Sega's timeless mascot will look like in the upcoming movie - and people are, in a word, unhappy. See Sonic's new look for yourself via this animated poster of his silhouette:

If nothing else, the Blue Blur's still collecting rings, and his three spikes of hair-fur look right - but that's where the stylistic similarities pretty much end. Chief among the unsettling changes is Sonic's muscular body, which looks like an Olympic runner's physique shrunken down to a toddler's proportions. My first reaction was that Sonic's buff redesign must've been based on the 8-year-old bodybuilder Little Hercules

Sonic will also be covered in realistic fur, rather than the smoothed-over blue mane we've grown accustomed to, because the producers thought he'd look naked otherwise. Other details that have everyone crying foul on social media are Sonic's apparent lack of his trademark gloves, and the stubbier, Sketchers-looking sneakers that have replaced his trademark running shoes (and apparently don't require socks). 

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There's another change we can't yet see in this poster, but it sounds like the most horrifying one of all: giving Sonic two separate eyeballs in place of his classic 'two pupils, one giant eye' look. Speaking with IGN, Sonic the Hedgehog's executive producer Tim Miller (who directed Deadpool and the cutscenes in CarnEvil) explained some of the changes. “I don't think Sega was entirely happy with the eye decision, but these sorts of things you go, 'It's going to look weird if we don't do this,'" said Miller. "But everything is a discussion, and that's kind of the goal, which is to only change what's necessary and stay true to the rest of it. [Sonic's] not going to feel like a Pixar character would because I don't think that's the right aesthetic to make it feel like part of our world."

As talented artists are want to do, folks immediately took to Twitter to post their visions of what this misshapen Sonic will look like in his full CG glory. The filmmakers cite the raunchy comedy Ted as an example of the 'CG creature in our reality' aesthetic they were going for, and this Sonic seems to tap into the same weirdness as the upcoming Pokemon Detective Pikachu, only one shade creepier. But if Sonic ends up looking like any of these creations for the entire movie, it'll instantly go from 'Regrettable live-action film akin to 1993's Super Mario Bros.' to 'Regrettable film that I must see for the sheer spectacle of it all.'

Sonic's beefy calves aren't the only thing to mock either - even the logo isn't safe from ridicule, whether it's in English or Japanese: 

On a more positive note, Sonic's new look doesn't have to be abysmal. Artist Dave Rapoza has drawn a Sonic inspired by the poster's design that makes the whole 'separate eyes' thing seem pretty ok: 

So, there you have it - Sonic fans and haters alike are rallying around this poster, united in their mockery of such a bizarre design. As one of the many upcoming video game movies, Sonic the Hedgehog stars Ben Schwartz as Sonic, Jim Carrey as Dr. Robotnik, and James Marsden as Tom Wachowski (who I assume will be the Dave to Sonic's Alvin). 

It'll hit theaters in late 2019; US folks can see it November 8 before it launches on November 28 in Australia, and December 26 in the UK. While you contemplate whether or not this new look will be the best or worst thing to happen in 2019, I'd like to remind you that we already have the perfect live-action Sonic the Hedgehog movie: 

If you're interested in more video games turned live-action movies, you'll be glad to know that the latest Monster Hunter movie photo looks much more authentic. 

Lucas Sullivan

Lucas Sullivan is the former US Managing Editor of GamesRadar+. Lucas spent seven years working for GR, starting as an Associate Editor in 2012 before climbing the ranks. He left us in 2019 to pursue a career path on the other side of the fence, joining 2K Games as a Global Content Manager. Lucas doesn't get to write about games like Borderlands and Mafia anymore, but he does get to help make and market them.