Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

Go X-Men, Go!

speedracerposterThe 2008 live-action Speed Racer movie is one of my favorite movies of all time. I’ve seen it easily a dozen times, and I still think it should have won every single possible award, including the ones for which it doesn’t technically qualify and a special new award made specifically to recognize Emile Hirsch’s perfect delivery of the perfect line “Inspector Detector suspected foul play.”

God, I love that movie.

ANYWAY, last night, a conversation on Twitter–specifically pursuant to James F. Wright and Josh Eckert’s pretty damn brilliant Children of the Engine concept–reminded me of the fact that it contains what I keep thinking should be pieces of an awesome Speed Racer / X-Men conspiracy theory.

Consider: Comics Cyclops is basically cosplaying Racer X at this point. Scott Porter, who played pre-Racer X Rex Racer in the 2008 film, voiced Cyclops in both the X-Men anime and the Marvel Heroes MMO; and Racer X’s movie costume is pretty much exactly Cyclops’s old X-Factor uniform, down to the color scheme.

I realize that that these things totally fail to resolve into anything resembling a respectable conspiracy theory. But I still feel vaguely that there should be something there, if only because finding a way to neatly streamline my pop-culture obsessions would probably save a lot of time and action-figure shelf space.



  1. Ninja? More like ‘Not-Ja’, am I right?

    I love the ever-loving stuffing out of that dang movie. It was EXACTLY what it wanted to be. It made me sad that it didn’t do better.

  2. After I saw Cloud Atlas (and loved it), I was like, “Wait a second. I love Bound. I love The Matrix. I even loved The Matrix Reloaded, which everyone else hated. Why have I never watched Speed Racer?”

    Unfortunately my first instincts were correct. 🙁

  3. Okay, I’ll bite. The Wachowski siblings live in the Marvel Universe, which is why their movies often seem a little out of touch in our world.

    Scott Summers used to watch Speed Racer on TV at the Sinister Home for Orphans, and he always thought Racer X was the epitome of cool. When Professor X took him in and told him he was designing a visor that would enable him more control of his powers, young Scott timidly said, “Um… could you make it look like Racer X?” Of course, Charles didn’t know what Scott was talking about, but he liked the character’s name, so he did his best from Scott’s description.

    This connection between Cyclops and Racer X (perhaps revealed in a Trish Tilby interview) has long been a piece of trivia common to X-Men buffs and Speed Racer fans. Andy and Lana Wachowski are both. So when they made the movie, they referred their designer Kym Barrett to media photos of Cyclops for ideas about what a live action Racer X should look like.

    Then just recently, after the whole Phoenix Five mess, Scott Summers was in a bad place emotionally (even for him). His powers were on the fritz, most of his friends hated him, his love life was once again in tatters, and he was on the run from the law. So when it was time for a new costume, it made sense to draw strength from his original childhood inspiration, Racer X. Thus bringing things full circle.

    That’s not a conspiracy theory exactly, but at the very least it’s a damned ornate headcanon.

  4. I have said it before and will say it again; Speed Racer (2008) is my favorite goddamn movie in the universe. It is EXACTLY what I wanted and the world was utterly unprepared for it. I am here for Cyclops gradually incorporating Racer X into his everything?? The connection would add nothing relevant to x-men plot except peak comedy which bring me a ridiculous amount of joy!

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