Traumafessions :: Reader Jason T. on Speed Racer Ep. “The Most Dangerous Race”

This f’d me up as a kid in the 70’s. Racer x was my hero until I saw this episode. Your site is awesome.

Jason T.

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11 years ago

Ha ha! American kids weren’t ready for Japan and US distributors knew it.

There was a Speed Racer episode in which an inventor turns into a violent car-hating madman after a scary scene in which his wife and son die in a hit-and-run, and another in which Speed tries to save an escaped convict whose blind little sister gets his eyes after the con succumbs to injuries in the Mach 5’s passenger seat.

They tried to write dialog “around” these events, but without editing the video, so young viewers could still “get” that things weren’t as pat as everyone was saying. The older brother didn’t have to “go away for a while;” he was DEAD DEAD DEAD AND HIS EYES ARE IN YOUR HEAD, LITTLE GIRRRRL

I may be showing my age here, but my very first memories are of “8-Man” (whose ridiculous US opener can be found on YouTube). The creepy android hero would switch from his “civilian” identity to 8-Man one side at a time: that is, his right side would change to 8-Man like changing a channel, then the left side.

Creepy enough. But in one episode, he did this while deep in thought, and managed to blow his secret identity in front of his flesh-and-blood girlfriend. The next thing I remember (and have never forgotten) was the shot of her laid out on a table while Our Hero and His Elderly Scientist Friend stand nearby, hands folded, eyes down. The narrator was blathering about a memory-cleaning ray keeping 8-Man’s secret safe, but deep down inside this little boy knew: YOUR SECRET’S SAFE BECAUSE SHE’S DEAAAAAAAAAAD AND YOU PROBABLY DID IT EIGHT MAAAAAAAAAAAN