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Speed Racer

The Speed Racer media franchise of animated cartoons started as the 1967 Japanese anime Mach Go Go Go. The central character was a young stock car driver named Mifune Go. The M logo on the hood of his race car and the front of his helmet stood for his family name Mifune, and the given name Go also happens to be how the number of the race car, five, is said in Japanese, and this also appears to explain why he has a letter G embroidered on his shirt.

English language rights to Mach Go Go Go were acquired by an Amercan syndicator a few years later where major editing[?] and dubbing were undertaken. When the series emerged before U.S. televison audiences as Speed Racer, fans were quickly drawn to its sophisticated plots involving fiendish conspiracies, violent action, and hard-driving racing.

The Mach Five, the car Speed Racer drove in the series, is a technological marvel containing useful equipment such as (among other things) jacks that can be used to jump over obstacles, buzz saws for negotiating jungles, a canopy that is both watertight and bullet resistant, batteries and oxygen systems that allow the car to be operated underwater, and tire enhancers that allow it to go into four-wheel-drive mode.

The central character, now named Speed Racer, had a younger brother named Spritle who along with his pet chimpanzee Chim-Chim constantly got into mischief. Other regular characters included Sparky, the company mechanic; Speed's father, Pops; and his mother, Mom; and also Speed's girlfriend Trixie.

A frequent recurring character, driving car number nine, is the enigmatic Racer X, a mysterious soldier of fortune[?] whose secret identity is that of Rex Racer, Speed's older brother, who years earlier had a falling out with the family, and left for undisclosed reasons.

There was a brief revival of Speed Racer in 1994 with new episodes set contemporaneously, and also a more recent series, Speed Racer X, bearing a date of 2002. (Source: IMDB)



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