Jack is racing Ryu on a few practise laps to help him get acquainted with
his machine, with Jody and Clash offering advice over the communicator, but
the newcomer's having a hard time deciding when to overtake. He finally
speeds up and gets the lead, but failed to notice the corner up ahead.
He tries to make a sharp turn, but hits the barrier at full speed and
crashes... though Jack remarks this isn't the first time that's happened.
The Galaxy Mobile Platoon race to the track and get him out of his vehicle
to safety; Jody isn't concerned that he crashed, she's desperate to know how
the lost to Jack!
Clash fixes the Dragon Bird back in the hangar, while Jack gripes about all
the attention Ryu's getting. He's not even that good! Clash suggests he's
envious of the attention Jody's giving him. Jack disagrees.
Director Tanaka summons Jody to his office, and expresses concern over Ryu's
performance - he's only been in the Platoon for a month and he's bungled
darn-near everything, but Jody is adamant that he'll improve if given time.
If not, they can take it out on her.
Ryu is summoned to the main room and given a bit of a catch-up: five years
ago, a cold sleep facility for dangerous criminals on planet Alcatrand was broken into by
Shadow. His robot troops wiped out the guards and got a hold of the pods,
and used the break-in to reawaken Zoda. Their ultimate goal? Conquering the universe.
Zoda is now using the prize money from F-Zero races to fund his criminal
operations, and that's why it's vitally important the Platoon beat them to
the finish line. Jody hopes Zoda is enough to make Ryu rise to the occasion;
EAD has faith in him, but Jack doubts this human relic has any skill
left in him.
Ryu leaves and returns to the test track, but visions of Zoda cloud his
Ryu practises 'til morning, running the corners again and again, using his
tried-and-true method to handling them, but has little luck. He visits his
favourite café, Falcon House, and asks the owner Burt for a black
coffee. Ryu overhears a group of girls gossiping about Jack Levin who are
going to see his next race; Ryu pretends he doesn't know him, or even has
interest in F-Zero racing...
... until Burt mentions he'll be going too; F-Zero appeals to all age
groups, it's the ultimate game of skill! (please buy our
games) He was once an F-Zero pilot, but an accident during a hair-pin
turn ended his career: he cornered too much going into the turn. The
machines of today are littered in safety features, so one doesn't need to
counter-steer as harshly... something Ryu realises he's been falling victim
The girls are impressed by Burt's racing knowledge, and he continues by
commenting on how there's a lot of bad eggs in the business; one girl
comments the universe is full of bad eggs, and wishes there were more good
folk to stand up to them.
Back at the base, Jody is briefing the Platoon on their next race on
planet Nintese, only for Ryu to barge in; nobody told him about this meeting!
Everyone's quick to tell him he's a crappy pilot who'd crash at the first
opportunity (EAD is there to lend sympathy, though), and Jody tells him he's
on standby until he's ready to join their operations. And that's an order.
Ryu adjourns to the lakeside park to watch the ships go by. He thinks back
to the time he and Haruka fed seagulls on the bow of a cruise ship, and how
much fun they had. But that's all gone now.
While driving back, he sees a bus carrying the girls he met earlier go the
other way, and a crowd of noisy hooligans following after.
The bus is on its way to the race: taking a road leading up to the sky and
towards the stars, it leads them across a space bridge, before entering the
warp gate, taking them to their destination. One of the girls gushes over
how exciting the event is going to be, all the thrills and spills, the
whizzes and hums of a passion-filled race...
... though things aren't so chipper on the other side: those punks are
attacking the bus! This is reported over the police radio, and Jack is eager
to rush out and stop them, though the Galaxy Mobile Platoon declare it none
of their business. They're there to win the race, and that's more important.
Unfortunately, those thugs are packing heat, putting the pursuing police
cars out of commission...
... but it's a good thing Ryu Suzaku is on their trail! A blast from a
rocket launcher damages the bus and forces it to stop, but Ryu gets between
it and the thugs, stepping out and introducing himself: he's from the Galaxy
Mobile Platoon, and these hooligans are under arrest. That doesn't scare
them, and they create a ring around the bus,
taking aim with another
... only for a mysterious blue vehicle to show up.
The punks know a badass when they see one, and scarper quicker than you can
say 'show me your moves.' The girls squeal their love for Falcon, and the
good Captain exits as suddenly as he came, but not without some words to Ryu:
"See you at the race."
The racers have lined up at the starting grid, awaiting the countdown, but
the girls are anxious to see the Dragon Bird take part after its driver
saved them earlier. Ryu joins the grid just seconds before the race
And they're off! Ryu streaks ahead of Clash and EAD, surprising the Platoon;
he demands they gave him a chance on this mission, and Jack is quick to test
him: there's a corner up ahead! Ryu reflects on what Burt told him...
... and sails across the corner with ease, nicking a boost pad to get ahead
of Jack. Ryu takes the lead on the first lap, and the girls are surprised to
discover they had talked to the Dragon Bird's pilot back in the café!
Jack isn't taking this sitting down; Ryu may have gotten lap one, but he'll
be the one taking first place. As if to spite him, a new contender
approaches: Captain Falcon! The Dragon Bird and Blue Falcon hit a boost pad,
sailing ahead of the Astro Robin.
Jack hits his booster to catch up, but the burst of speed sends him flying
when there's a drop in the track, sending his vehicle crashing and burning.
Captain Falcon takes first place, Ryu takes second, but he rushes to Jack's
wreck as soon as he can. Jody reprimands Ryu with a slap; he not only
disobeyed her order, but his actions caused the injury of a fellow pilot.
Jack tells her to lay off; after all, if he hadn't
sabotaged the Dragon
Bird, it might actually have taken first place. Ryu socks him and storms
off. While Jack is taken away in the ambulance, the group grumble about the
ill-will that's been going on between them, though Jody remarks this is just
how Jack works.
She later visits him at the hospital, where the nurses can't get enough of
his boy-idol charms. Jody speaks to him alone, and believes he let Ryu win.
Jack insists he just didn't want Captain Falcon to take home the prize
money, but Jody returns the piece he allegedly took from the Dragon Bird:
it's not even from Ryu's machine, it's from the Astro Robin. Jody thanks him
for giving Ryu confidence, though, and leaves.
Ryu returns to base to find someone waiting for him: Lucy Liberty,
one of the F-Zero fans he saved on the bus. She was impressed by Ryu's
actions both on and off the race track, she's decided to join the Galaxy
It's Captain Falcon!
Burt's F-Zero Classroom: Burt talks briefly about Captain Falcon, the ace
pilot whose identity is a mystery, before urging viewers wishing to know more
about him to Falcon House, where's there's some totally unexplained
him on the walls, and you can buy breakfast for only 480 credits!
4Kids broadcast: This episode is titled The Racer's Edge.
After Rick crashes, the chat between Jack and
Clash segues into the reason Jody recruited Jack into the Platoon - a
subject the anime wouldn't be exploring until episode 37!
EAD speaks with a chirpy modulated voice.
Lucy's friend in the blue top has her cleavage and exposed belly button
The planet is referred to as "Ninte".
Bios of the other Platoon members and their machines are used to prefix the
Jody's slap is cut.
Jack actually explains his sabotage - the device allegedly sapped power
from Rick's machine, and was also responsible for his crash during the
practise run. It turns out to be a headlight fuse from the Astro Robin.
The course on planet Nintese is a copy of Mute City: Figure Eight from
F-Zero X, complete with the loop, the boost on the corner, and the drop that
Jack wipes out on.
For the brief instance you see it, Black Shadow's machine looks pretty off-model, though the close-up of Black Shadow uses the Black Bull's CG model. This is rectified in the 4Kids version, and also any time the scene is revisited in future episodes.