Speed Racer (ReSaurus)

Speed Racer

I've never really been a fan of Speed Racer and personally found the show to be a little boring. However, I did take the time to watch to 2008 film on Netflix (which the below toy line has nothing at all to do with). Visually it was both fascinating and a little sickening at the same time with all its bright colors and ever shifting camera angles (especially during races). It wasn't by any means bad, but it also wasn't anything that was going to be winning any Academy Awards for best actor, director, etc. It was a popcorn flick and sadly I had no popcorn.

Speed, like so many iconic characters before him, got his start in the 1960's under the guise of Mach GoGoGo (in Japan). The character was created by Tatsu Yoshida and in his early years spent most of his time on printed paper. However, most will remember him from the forthcoming USA syndication of his 1967 to 1968 animated series which ran for fifty-two episodes.

Since his inception, Speed Racer has seen many types of mass market products. However, the first "major" toy line for the characters is noted as the 1992 line by Pangea Corporation for Ace Novelty Toy Company (which we won't be looking at today). These products focused not only on the original animated series of Speed Racer, but the highly popular New Adventures of Speed Racer - An animated series developed strictly for US (and English speaking) audiences.

The continued success and ever increasing popularity around the glove eventually lead to ReSaurus obtaining the rights for the characters and producing a series of action figures as well as the Mach 5. The series included two waves of five inch figures  which totaled eight figures - Nine if you include the exclusive Lee's Action Figure News Toy Review Racer X.

Wave One
Speed Racer*Pops Racer

Wave One
Trixie*Captain Terror

Each figure featured a tone of racing related accessories from flags, to air pumps, tools, trophies and more. The only thing the line seemed to be missing was a massive playset and a few more cars to actually play out a race.

Wave Two
Grand Prix Speed Racer*Racer X

Wave Two
Inspector Detector*The Assassin

Lee's Action Figure News Toy Review Exclusive
Racer X (Metallic)

Though the Mach 5 was the only vehicle to end up getting released, ReSaurus planned a third wave for the series which would have Racer X's car, the Shooting Star. The third wave would have also included a twelve inch Speed and Trixie. However, no new five inch figures were confirmed prior to the line being cancelled. Images can be found online of the box for the Shooting Star as well as prototypes for the twelve inch dolls.

Mach 5 with Spridle and Chim-Chim

Some consider the ReSaurus line of Speed Racer figures to be the best of any action figures created for the characters. However, it certainly wasn't the last.

Speed Racer

The 2005 Toynami Mach 5 gets an honorable mention today because the mold used for the vehicle is actually the same which was developed for the car in the above noted ReSaurus line. While the molds for ReSaurus's Spridle and Chim-Chim were also used for this particular "set", Toynami produced its own Speed figure.

There is some irony to be found with this line. If you look on secondary markets, the Toynami version of the car can sell for upwards of a hundred dollars in the box. Meanwhile the ReSaurus version sells for around thirty-five. The Toynami version doesn't seem to be any harder to find than the original ReSaurus version, so at this point I can only speculate people are paying for the brand name and perhaps don't know they're getting the exact same molded car.

As for the figures, they're readily available and a dime a dozen. Most sellers price them around $30.00 each and most buyers spend between $7.00 and $10.00 for them - Mint on card. Don't rush into this line throwing money around left and right. Wait for the right seller to come alone. Otherwise you're going to overpay.

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