This DVD has the first three episodes of the 2008 television cartoon series, created expressly to promote the movie. The movie however is based on the original cartoon, the only link to this series being that the car is now a Mach 6.
The next generation is exactly that. The only character from the original series is Spritle, who is now middle aged, and Headmaster of a racing academy founded by the Racer family. The new racing champ is X Racer, the oldest son of Speed Racer, the latter having apparently disappeared, but X's thunder is about to be stolen by a new kid on the block, a young man named Speed, who grew up in an orphanage.
Speed shows up at the Academy without a race car, but with an impressive collection of fancy moves on the track, reminiscent of the famous racer with the same name. Speed's friends are Conor, a fellow student and gifted mechanic, and Lucy, another student who is very intelligent and more than a little assertive. Conor's robotic monkey, named Chim Chim after the monkey in the original series, completes the group of friends.
With lots of racing, bad guys, gadgets and fancy cars, this one seeks to continue in the tire tracks of the original series. I'm guessing that the animation is intentionally old fashioned, because it looks a bit cheesy for a modern day cartoon, but I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt, mainly because my son likes it. There have been two more episodes since this was released, so maybe there will be more DVDs to follow. Considering that I've just had to buy all five DVDs from the original series, my wallet is not amused.