Speed Racer

Alt title: Mach Go Go Go

TV (52 eps)
1967 - 1968
2.951 out of 5 from 1,985 votes
Rank #6,459

Speed Racer drives the fabulous Mach 5 in race after race, although the prize money isn't his true goal: he seeks to be the best racer in the world, and to defeat the mysterious Racer X (not knowing that Racer X is actually his long lost older brother, Rex Racer)! The races don't take place upon the boring circular tracks that one might expect; instead, they tend to involve the countryside, and rough and dangerous terrain. This is where the Mach 5's special features, such as super traction tires and jumping struts come in very handy. Speed must also deal with villains ranging from unscrupulous racers to thieves and spies, but he has the help of Trixie, his little brother Spridle, and the pet monkey ChimChim along the way.

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Reviews

Inu230
8

“Here comes Speed Racer. He’s a demon on wheels. Hes a demon on wheels and he’s gonna be chasing after someone. He’s gaining on you so you better look alive. He’s busy revving up the powerful Mach 5. And when the odds are against him,  and there’s dangerous work to do,  You bet your life, Speed Racer will see it through. Go, Speed Racer, Go Speed Racer, Go Go Speed Racer, Go! He’s off and flying as he guns the car around the track. He’s jamming down the pedal like he’s never coming back. Adventures waiting just ahead. Go, Speed Race, Go Speed Racer. Go Speed Racer, Go!” -- Story Speed is an 18 year old man still living at home with his father Pops, his mother, unnamed, his younger brother, Spritle, and their animal companion ChimChim. Speed dreams of being a professional racer but Pops is against him despite being an engineer who designed Speed’s car - the Mach 5. So pretty predictably Speed enters a race without his father’s consent. Of course when Pops finds out he blows a gasket and then calms down and the remaining 51 episodes feature Speed competing in race after race with the aid of Trixie, Sparky, Spritle & ChimChim. The series as a whole is entertaining to watch with some character’s here and there who could have been fleshed out more (deserving of more episodes or screen time) while others could have been omitted or altered to make them more convincing or compelling as either villains or new friends for the group. For the most part character’s aren’t reoccurring though there are several Part 1/Part 2 plots that carry over {the longest being the finale}. Exceptions being the main group (Speed’s parents) and a law enforcer who relies heavily on Speed because like a lot (if not all hero stories) typical law enforcement is inadequate in handling crime.  -- CHARACTERS As a main character, Speed is likeable, fairly nice to look at, has a sense of justice that is for the most place in line with my own - though why he has a penchant for watching other women when Trixie is literally right there is over my head, and there are times when his lying is in contrast to what I’d do in the situation even if the justification is to reduce harm to the receiver. And he has a dream that is worth watching 52 episodes to explore. Trixie, as the M.M.C’s girl is not all that likable with her major reactions to Speed’s attention going to other females - if it seriously bothered her she should have looked for a boyfriend elsewhere seriously - and her lack of presence outside the Mach 5’s shotgun. She’s always saying she has to ride next to him because she’s more helpful than Sparky - or Spritle. Her contribution is seriously all about having a female on the show who has more screen time than the M.M.C’s mother. Spritle. This character can be summed up in one word: ANNOYING. Seriously every scene, every word of every line, constant temper tantrums followed by shoving anything and everything into his mouth and back to more whining is all this character really does in 52 episodes. Speed could have had a younger sister and the above issues this reviewer had would be absent. Chim Chim. So this character doesn’t have any overt issues though I am concerned about his companionship with Spritle. Being close to that character and constantly doing things that aid the ANNOYANCE, - saving him from baddies, sharing meals, following his orders - doesn’t suit me. I’d prefer if he was Speed’s animal companion (or once again Speed had a non annoying younger sister). Sparky. This character doesn’t get a whole lot of screen time and there is no character development to go off of. In the first episode I was excited to see more of this character and was really interested in a young mechanic character - especially since he pretty much (possibly only) works on the Mach 5. His backstory would have been worth a couple if not more episodes to me and I think the creators did a disservice to him by having him be in 10 or less episodes. As much as the Mach 5 was driven, got scratched up, was taken by baddies/ held hostage by guys who were button pressing like there was no tomorrow, focusing on the importance of maintenance and repair in a show about a car should have been a concern. Pops: I feel similarly to this character as I do to Sparky in regards to his chosen career. Pop’s engineering design concepts started the show with flare but quickly got lost only to reappear for an episode or two and then fade away again. There were many missed opportunities to showcase the great mind behind the Mach 5 and a bit too much emphasis on the driver. Though the show is called Speed Racer. He couldn’t race if his car wasn’t maintained or created.  Impressive Creativity Mach 5; 7 buttons that each perform a useful function for various situations. Invisible ink: plans for a new vehicle are written in ink the baddies can’t see. License plate swap; There’s a vehicle that can swap it’s plate. Color Changing vehicle: a vehicle goes from white to red to evade tailing. Tracy wears a parachute in a helicopter. Smart girl is ready for the undesirable situation that requires her to bail out. Just because it's his show doesn’t mean Speed wins every race. While he does win a lot more than he doesn’t, he is not 100% the victor. Mach 5 has a music radio and a CB radio. Tunes for driving around town and a communication to his friends/father when in dire circumstances. Importance of downshifting is emphasized; going fast isn’t the only way to win. A home for homeless children; an elderly man has a dream worth supporting. Extendable and retractable pole ladder: easy storage in a trunk or backseat. A car that runs on lightning and stores the electricity. Vehicles driven remotely. -- Not so Great: Questionable Parenting Mother offers child throwing a tantrum a plate of cookies. Father drove off his eldest by telling his son he wasn’t good enough. Youngest kid accepts candy from a stranger and lies to his mother about it. Youngest kid continuously disobeys Man beast his daughter. In the same episode that Pops can rattle off Spritle’s age down to the hour he can’t tell the difference between his son and other child. And neither can the other child’s father. Poor Advice Trixie tells Lily to forget her brother Flash wanted revenge.  As if his behavior could be so easily swept under the run. Trixie gets upset at Speed for refusing to cheat in a race, Speed decides Trixie was right and cheating was the right course.  Cheating is not and was not the right decision to make. Just because his fellow racer had a sob story was not justification for being dishonest. Speed lies to Gizmo about his father to back him up in keeping a horrendous secret which led to Gizmo’s hospitalization. Overall  This anime was worth watching and the opening theme is now more than an earworm. 

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