Thursday, November 5, 2009

Speed Racer (1967)

when I would visit my relatives in WV in the summer (usually) WDCA Channel 20 showed the best kid vid ever.  "Speed Racer" was one of the many great shows they aired in the 70s.  it never aired in the 70s in Longmont, Colorado (or the greater Denver area), so the only place to watch it was back there, as far as I knew.

we also didn't know Japanese shows were a bit different than US cartoons- they almost always had a real ending, whereas most US cartoons, aimed squarely at kids, were neverending (see the cool cartoon "Shazzan" for such an example- Chuck and Nancy never did get home).

it was adapted from the Japanese version "Maha Go Go Go" almost immediately, though they had to edit out some of the violence.  Peter Fernandez did the scripts, as well as providing the voices of many characters, including Speed and the mysterious Racer X (who, unknown to Speed was his older brother Rex, as the narrator always informed us when Racer X would make an appearance). 

here's an example of the violence that remained intact, from the opening sequence- this car (and presumably, the driver) flip off the track.  this is followed by a HUGE explosion, which could only lead one to believe that said poor driver perished in the flames.

in recent years, Speed has held less fascination for me than before, which I think comes from the wealth of information about the show (such as this book) and that many of the episodes were shown on MTV and then available on VHS, while many of the other shows weren't available at all.

still, the Mach 5 is one of the coolest cars ever, and that's no lie.  ranks right up there with the 60s Batmobile.  though, I've always wondered why they never locked that trunk to keep Spridle and Chim Chim out of it.

I'm watching the movie that was made and then flopped.

No comments: