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Western Animation: Speed Racer: The Next Generation

A young man, somewhere in a desert, anxiously awaits his first day at the Racing Academy to become a great car racer. He immediately becomes the new guy- he's always picked on, makes only two friends, and arrives with no racing car of his own...then he discovers the remains of the one and only Mach 5 in a near-by junkyard. With his rebuilt Mach 6, unusual racing talent, and mysterious lineage, the man realizes for the first time in his life that he is Speed Racer's second-born long-lost son!

Speed Racer: The Next Generation is the third consecutive television adaptation as a Sequel Reset taking place 40 years from the original storyline to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the entire franchise, making it also a Revival. Nicktoons Network aired the entire 26-episode season from 2008 to 2009. If the stiff, Flash-animated characters look familiar, it's because Animation Collective, probably best known for animating the first original Nicktoon Kappa Mikey, produced and premiered this series in conjunction to the wide release of the live-action feature film. It is quite possibly the most successful of the adaptations, considering the first two never even made it past being canceled during their run. 95% of the characters are brand new anyway, which makes for a more original story, yet when it does get nostalgic, the tributes are amazingly accurate. The late Peter Fernandez, the producer of the dub of the original show, as well as the lyricist for the English theme song and the voice of Speed, was brought in to voice an adult Spritle.

A second season premiered on March 24th, 2011, with Toonz Entertainment in India taking over the outsourced animation this time, since Animation Collective had financial problems. Speed Sr. reveals more about his motives for going into hiding in this season, and we get more information about the Committee. After his death, the voices of Peter Fernandez's roles were replaced with another voice actor.

This show provides examples of:

  • Alpha Bitch - Annalise.
  • Back for the Dead: The Mach Five is revived, only to end up truly totaled.
  • Badass Driver
  • Big Man on Campus - X, so much... after he stops being a jerk to Speed.
  • Break the Haughty - Annalise gets dumped by X, and the main characters give her what-for several times.
  • Brain in a Jar: This happened to Stan in a alternative Timeline.
  • Captain Smooth and Sergeant Rough - Headmaster Spritle and Zile Zazic, respectively. In scenes they share together, you can just feel the tension.
    • Same goes for Professors Winn and Aniskov, respectively.
  • Chekhov's Gun - Speed's red bandanna, the only item from his parents that he kept his whole life. Becomes very important during the final arc of Season One.
  • Changeling Fantasy - The show appeared to be going this way by the last episode.
  • Chick Magnet - First X, then Speed and X. And they're reunited brothers. Quite the Mr. Fanservice!
  • Cool Car
  • Cool Loser - Speed... in the social food chain, that is. On the track, he usually wins.
  • Daddy's Girl - Annalise's father is head of Zazic Industries, which designed the school track, and the wealthiest person on the campus.
  • Dented Iron - Stan, quite possibly. He was part of the Car Acrobatics team, and as such had to have been an ace driver.
  • Do-Anything Robot
  • Do Not Touch the Funnel Cloud - Used in the episode "The Dance", may be justified in the fact that it's virtual.
  • Everything Sounds Sexier in French: Ronald Moulton insisted on having his name pronounced with a (fake) French accent.
  • Extreme Graphical Representation
  • Face-Heel Turn - X Racer in "Racing With the Enemy"
  • Fanboy - Conor
  • Hard Light - In the third part of The Fast Track, various elements from the Virtual Track cross into the real world to wreck havoc, including Conor's gigantic caveman version of himself that he initially programmed for fun!
  • Heel-Face Turn - X Racer.
    • And Annalise Zazic.
  • Generation Xerox - Speed, Conor, Lucy and Chim-Chim = Speed, Sparky, Trixie and... well, Chim-Chim. With X standing in for Racer X In more ways that one.
    • Especially since in "The Beginning" during the qualifying race, when the racing announcer mistakenly calls X by the name of Racer X.
  • High School Dance
  • Holodeck Malfunction - The source of all the problems in the 3-parter, The Fast Track. It includes the return of The Mammoth Car and the Melange.
  • Holographic Terminal - The start and finish points to the Academy's virtual track.
  • Hostage for MacGuffin - Zile intends to steal the Mach 6, but gets Conor instead, and sees the opportunity to lure his friends to him so he can get the car.
  • I Knew It: See Missing Mom
  • Jerk Jock - X Racer starts out as this.
  • Laser Blade: The Mach 6's saws.
  • Lazy Artist - The Flash characters are stiff, with outlines that have no life to them, interacting with Conspicuous CG environments and race cars (the Maya models aren't even rendered with a finished look). In the pilot movie, two shots have badly-mixed shading over the characters, prompting the studio never to use shading on them again except for extreme cases.
    • That is, until the second season, when the shading returns only it looks slightly better due to actually having an animation budget.
  • Long Lost Sibling
  • Luke, I Am Your Father - Obviously, Even though Speed never actually meets his father until the last episode. With Spritle, it's more of a Luke I Am Your Uncle!
  • MacGuffin - The canister that holds the final ingredient to making the Mach 6 run at the speed of sound.
    • And the hourglass shaped part that lets the Mach 6 time travel
  • Made-for-TV Movie - Several episodes can be grouped into 5 three-episode-long movies. The first 3 of these movies were released on DVD.
  • Missing Mom - Speed's mother is never mentioned. It's a good chance that Trixie is his mother.
    • Turns out everyone was right about it!
  • Mythology Gag - Speed's new high-tech racing suit has "Go" and "Daisuke" written on it. Daisuke was Pops Racer's given name in Japan, and Go was Speed Sr's.
  • Non-Human Sidekick - This time, the monkey's A ROBOT!
  • Not Me This Time - When Ranford was trying to sabotage Speed, Speed and his friends thought at first that Zile was behind this.
  • Older and Wiser: Spritle.
  • Only One Name - Though Spritle and X both have last names (presumably Racer for both of them), no one ever uses it.
  • Previously On
  • Proud to Be a Geek - Conor's self-esteem is unwavering.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure - Spritle
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning - Used in "The Hunt for Truth" Part 3, when everyone is hypnotized by Baron Von Monocle.
  • Shout-Out - Countless, all to the original show.
    • The ones that aren't to the original show do have relevance to the plot twist in season 2 (the time travel) (with the exception of the Star Wars ref in season 1). Back to the Future and Jurrasic Park are two great examples.
    • Conor makes a reference to the I Am Your Father moment from Star Wars when hypothesizing that the original Speed may be Speed's father. He turns out to be right.
    • An entire episode includes a car with speech capabilities in a shout-out to Knight Rider.
    • In response to various viewers pointing out the show's similarities to Harry Potter, Ron, Harry, and Hermoine can be seen in a second-long shot during an assembly meeting about disobeying strict new school rules.
  • Status Quo Is God - Particularly jarring in a show like this, where continuity seems to be present underneath individual arcs but cannot surface.
    • Speed's goal in the third three-part movie is to win a major corporate car company (whose founder and main owner bet it on the race) that will give him enough money to finally leave the Academy, and develop the gasless engine. Of course, they win. Then in the last two minutes of the third episode, reporters rush in telling him that because Ranford was a fraud, the shares were all dumped, so the company went belly up and their prize is now useless!
  • Steven Ulysses Perhero - Really, why did he not see his fate coming?
  • Tagalong Kid - Conor follows Speed wherever he goes.
  • The Reveal - A flashback in Episode 16 shows that Captain Terror and Zile Zazic have... similar head forms... to say the least. In Season Two, it's silently confirmed since they wear these outfits.
    • Dr. Andre Chezcko reveals himself to be an older Sparky!
  • The Rival - Conor has one by the name of Ronald Multon from his middle school days.
  • The Von Trope Family - Baron Von Monocle.
  • Those Two Guys - Two girls who fawn over X, then Speed.
  • Time Travel: The main arc for the second season.
  • Two-Teacher School
  • Tyrant Takes the Helm - While Spritle is discharged from his post as headmaster, Zile pulls strings to hire a new puppet, who Speed and his friends hate.
  • The Unfought: Season One ended before anyone even got to find out the identities of "The Committee".
  • Viewer-Friendly Interface
  • Villain Decay - Zile and Stan spend most of Season Two under arrest, while the main characters deal with new threats. Additionally, Zile's status as a mogul has left his hands tied in ways they weren't when he was Captain Terror, leader of the Car Acrobatics Team. And the Tough Ranger SUV has poor mileage and can't maneuver nearly as well as his old racing car.
    • After Speed and the gang changed the timeline to prevent the Shadow Committee, Zile was arrested, got divorced by his wife and have Annalise being taken. This eventully caused him turning into a Villainous Breakdown.
  • Visible Invisibility - Speed and Chim-Chim become invisible when accidentally getting caught in Conor's invention for the Mach 6. To help the viewers, their silhouettes are embossed on whatever they're moving over, with a wave distortion inside them. Of course, the other characters cannot see them AT ALL.
  • We All Live in America - In line with the Speed Racer live action movie it was released in conjunction with, the lead characters and setting isn't in Japan like the original show. In this show, Speed, Spritle and X are American. It takes place in a desert akin to Arizona, with truckers and country hicks!
  • Weaponized Car's Child - the Mach 6
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: It's unknown what happened to The Iron Terror/Zile Zazic and Stan after time traveling with his prototype of the Mach Six.
  • Who Names Their Kid "Dude"? - His name is Speed? His name is X?
    • Apparently it's better than Preston dePedal, an alias X has to use to gain access to Alpha Academy.
  • Logical Fallacies - Various scientific explanations could never possibly occur. How would you make "inertial dampeners" in racing suits?
  • Your Mind Makes It Real - Crashes in the Virtual Track are not fatal, as any racer who does crash immediately gets dispensed back into the real world unharmed. However, the faculty can program any obstacle to injure a student, which is rarely done. Also occurs when Conor's giant doppleganger runs loose.

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alternative title(s): Speed Racer The Next Generation
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