Archie Comics will publish a massive 12-part series on The Blue Bomber and the Blue Blur.
Crossovers are an odd phenomena in geekdom. Born from the desire to briefly merge stories and fictional universes owned by rival companies, a properly handled crossover can produce results that are just as memorable as the original franchises themselves. Aliens Vs Predator and Marvel Vs Capcom became huge hits thanks to this process, and now Archie Comics thinks it can get in on the crossover game. Having already licensed the comic book rights to Sega's Sonic the Hedgehog and Capcom's Mega Man, Archie Comics has gone a step further and brokered a deal for a 12-part storyline that will bring the two gaming legends together for the first time.
The entire event will be penned by Ian Flynn, who already writes the Sonic and Mega Man books for Archie Comics. "I'm already living the dream by writing the Sonic titles," Flynn said. "Then I got to live the other dream of writing for Mega Man. With that many dreams being handed to me, I figured it was only a matter of time."
Flynn is taking the story very seriously, as series editor Paul Kaminski discovered when he brought Flynn onto a project that would make any fanfiction writer salivate. "His response was, 'I have been writing that story since we began the Mega Man title,'" Kaminski said. "Of course, I thought he was joking, but not an hour later my inbox was flooded with Sonic/Mega Man story synopses."
Despite the characters coming from different fictional universes, Flynn believes that he can craft a crossover that is true to the characters and the worlds they inhabit. "They're both fun, adventurous and open to everyone," Flynn explained. "They both have heavy sci-fi themes, mainly robotics, underpinning them that give us something to build from and play off each other. That, and they both have mad-scientist nemeses with fabulous mustaches!"
Ultimately, what's most impressive about the entire project is its scope. The story will encompass 12 chapters in the ongoing Mega Man and Sonic comic books, which not only suggests that the story will be canonical to the comic book universes, but also that the story will be bigger than similar crisis events published by DC and Marvel. "Going in, I want this to be the story fans wanted to read - not just our regular comic fans, but fans of both franchises - so we're holding nothing back," Flynn continued. "Who knows when the stars will align and we'll get another chance to do something like this again, so I'm making sure this is the end-all, be-all crossover."
While the success of the project isn't guarenteed, the last time I read an Archie Comics crossover was the Archie Meets The Punisher one-shot, a silly yet less-risky project in comparison. If Archie Comics is willing to take a gamble on a big project that, at worst, will get the attention to two huge fanbases, who am I to judge? The storyline will begin in 2013, giving Flynn and Archie Comics plenty of time to flesh things out and reveal more details.