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Death-Trap come to town

Death-Trap were a team of mercenaries hired to capture Sonic the Hedgehog in the world of Shanazar, after Sonic had rescued several children from being merged with genies (a ritual that protected the Kingdom of Shanazar). Consisting of Kalus (the leader, made of stone), Prank (able to summon a genie) and Totem Billy (a scout, amazingly keen sense of smell and long-range vision), they first appeared in Issue 157 after Sonic escaped from prison. Hired by Doctor Robotnik to capture Sonic and bring him to Princess Kupacious, the crew made a decent effort of knocking Sonic about, until the hedgehog realised he didn't need to fight this battle, and fled. Totem Billy, however, was able to follow his scent.

Death-Trap eventually returned in Issue 163, back on the trail of Sonic after Totem Billy recovered from a cold. They discover that Sonic is in an isolated city, but are stopped by Medusa, whose glare turns Prank and Totem Billy into stone. Kalus, already made of stone, heads to attack Medusa, but crumbles into sand after a delayed reaction. Later, Sonic notes that the two stony members of Death-Trap won't be hunting him anymore, but comes face to face with a sandy Kalus. Sonic uses this to his advantage, destroying Kalus and using the ensuing sand cloud to defeat Medusa. With that, Death-Trap were effectively no more. They've resurfaced alive as of Issue 263.

Original plans

Nigel Kitching revealed [1] that he originally planned to have Death-Trap appear in more stories, chasing Sonic across Shanazar: this would allow him to have a running story arc that wouldn't impact on Lew Stringer (as Sonic would escape Death-Trap each time).

"[Kalus] imagined him as not really being a villain at all. He simply hunts down criminals for a living. Sonic is considered a criminal here. I don't think he was always made of stone. I think there is some tragedy in his past that has left him this way. He's very deep and private - almost shy... [Prank] would have been the nastiest character I had ever written for Sonic. He actually likes inflicting pain on people and has no mercy at all. He would be capable of terrible things if he wasn't kept in check by the stone guy. Maybe there is some secret between the two that keeps the stone bloke in charge. I also think Robotnik has struck some secret deal with the genie guy... [Totem Billy] is more animal that 'human'. he relates to the world with his sense of smell. He can talk but when he does he makes very little effort to communicate effectively - almost like speech is beneath him. He doesn't think much - that's a language thing. He knows a deeper reality through the power of his nostrils. Bit of a mystic.

So that's the way it would have worked. I had an idea in mind where Sonic badly injures the stone guy. By this point Sonic realises that he is actually a good person and so Sonic goes out of his way to help. I wanted to play with ideas about what makes one person a hero and the other a villain. In this world Sonic has committed a serious crime by rescuing those kids. To society he is the villain - his actions have placed everyone in danger. Deathtrap are just doing their job, bringing in a criminal."

His plans were cut short when he was fired and Lew was eventually trusted with the task of tying up their loose ends.