We are living in strange times; Sonic the Hedgehog, the butt of every gaming-related joke since 2006, has returned to prominence after Paramount’s infamously-awful movie trailer creeped out the entirety of the internet. A horrible human approximation of a character which was never intended to be taken so seriously in terms of design, Sega fans and detractors have had a field day poking fun at his beady eyes and grossly anthropomorphic teeth. That said, things got even weirder when famous YouTube personality PewDiePie tried to sell his artistic rendering of the mascot on eBay.
Jokingly insinuating that he needed the money, PewDiePie announced on Twitter that he put his nightmarish photoshop recreation of Sonic up for auction on eBay. Now, the internet’s favorite Swede has been around the YouTube community for quite some time at this point, and he should have known that his fanbase would take things just a bit too far.
https://t.co/DlfGPlTOCg— ƿ૯ωძɿ૯ƿɿ૯ (@pewdiepie) May 4, 2019
It pains me to sell this that Ive hold on to for so long, but money is tight
The bidding started on May 4th at a reasonable 3.99 pounds, but things quickly spiraled way out of control as an ensuing bidding war rocketed the price up to ten thousand pounds just ten minutes after the auction began. Within roughly half a day, the asking price for PewDiePie’s low-effort meme art was well north of ten million pounds, reportedly halting somewhere around thirteen million. That’s about seventeen million USD and far and away more than the price of most genuine examples of art.
Fortunately, PewDiePie stepped in and took down the listing before things could further spiral into madness. He likely only listed his drawing on eBay as a joke and didn’t wish to put someone on the hook for thirteen million for something that certainly won’t be getting anywhere close to a modern art museum. It’s unlikely that the YouTuber would have actually seen the money if he allowed the bidding to end, but it’s still strange to think that someone out there would have potentially been willing to put themselves millions of dollars in the hole for the sake of a joke.
PewDiePie originally drew his interpretation of Sega’s famous protagonist as part of a video he put together in which he challenged himself to draw beloved pop culture characters from memory. Those who haven’t seen the video can probably tell based on his version of Sonic that he didn’t do very well. He also attempted iconic designs like Pokémon’s Pikachu, Nintendo’s Mario, and Squidward from Spongebob Squarepants. The others weren’t necessarily that close, but Sonic was by far his worst attempt.
This was, in a way, more fuel for the dumpster fire currently burning down the upcoming sonic movie. PewDiePie himself has dedicated entire videos to the probable box office flop, and many have sarcastically remarked that his version of Sonic is at least on par with the monstrosity revealed in the film’s official trailer. In fact, the internet’s displeasure with Sonic’s design in the new movie was so great that the film’s director recently announced that the character would be receiving a much-needed visual overhaul. With six months before the movie is slated to release, it’s tough to know if this touch-up will be able to beat PewDiePie’s artistic stylings.