The crushing weight of Sonic The Hedgehog’s unbelievable box office success may have attempted to smite the existence of Ugly Sonic out of history, but the Internet’s memory is long. We can never forget the uproar over Sonic’s hyperrealistic teeth, and now, thanks to Chip ’N Dale: Rescue Rangers, that discarded version has been immortalized.
Ugly Sonic–that’s what he calls himself, à la Fat Amy from Pitch Perfect–has a memorable cameo in Disney+’s Who Framed Roger Rabbit-esque animated comedy. The character is voiced, most appropriately, by Tim Robinson (I Think You Should Leave). Ugly Sonic is not only aware of how people feel about his “human teeth,” he’s willing to capitalize on the public’s scorn: “Oh, they’re laughing at me. I know that. You can’t hurt my feelings if I’m in on the joke!”
Speaking with Polygon, director Akiva Schaffer said that Ugly Sonic is one of his “favorite” cameos: “It’s one of my favorite things in the movie. And I’m very excited for people to see it … I don’t know what I should, what I’m allowed to say [about it]. I think I will actually plead the fifth.”
One might be surprised to see a Paramount/Sega property pop up in the House of Mouse, but Schaffer told the outlet: “It was super-important to me to get a bunch of third-party cartoons, because if this is going to be some sort of a celebration of animation, it can’t just be a celebration of Disney animation,” Risking the Disney gulag, he added: “You don’t want it to feel like an ad for Disney+.”
The Lonely Island member admitted licensing Ugly Sonic and the rest of Chip ’N Dale’s multiverse of cartoons “was a process.” He said, “You don’t usually come out of a movie and want to thank the lawyers, but we genuinely owe the Disney lawyers for being team players. [They] super stayed optimistic about it, and really saw the value of the third-party stuff, and they had to really work hard.” If all that work led to Tim Robinson as Ugly Sonic, then it was definitely worth it.