Bringing us all one horrible step closer to the day we have to write the words “Well, here’s what Big The Cat looks like, grinning his big ol’ pervert grin in Sonic The Hedgehog 6,” we’ve now seen photos from the shooting of the upcoming Sonic 2 that confirm that famed echidna and Sonic frenemy Knuckles is showing up in the follow-up to the 2020 film. Specifically, the photos—originally taken by @pursuit23 on Twitter and published by Just Jared—show what appears to be a stand-in prop for the bright red marsupial, hanging out on the sequel’s set. (Of course, it’s possible that the virtual Knuckles was a bluff, and that that’s actually just Adam Pally in an incredibly elaborate disguise.)
Although the first Sonic film mostly restrained itself (on this score, at least), it did end with a tease for the arrival of the blue hedgehog’s various extremely fan-art-able friends into its cinematic universe with a brief appearance by floating fox Tails. (Real name: Miles Prower. As in, Miles per Hour? That’s the level of humor we’re operating at here.) But while Sonic and Tails are close friends in the games, his relationship with Knuckles is far more fraught, with the two initially facing off as rivals in 1994's Sonic The Hedgehog 3 and Sonic & Knuckles. Also, they’ve definitely gotten each other pregnant like a billion times on DeviantArt, so that’s going to add a certain extra tension to the relationship.
Viewers of the first Sonic will know that things probably aren’t going to be any more smooth in the film franchise; while Knuckles himself didn’t show up in Sonic 1, his fellow echidnas made themselves known in its very weird, all-animated opening minutes, leaping out of the shadows to murder Sonic’s surrogate owl mom. That’s enough to make any baby shower a little bit awkward.
Sonic 2 is currently aimed at an April 2022 release date.