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IGPX: Immortal Grand Prix (IGPX インモータル・グランプリAi Jī Pī Ekkusu Inmōtaru Guranpuri?) refers to two anime series co-produced simultaneously by Cartoon Network and Production I.G. The first is a "microseries" consisting of five 5-minute episodes, and the second is a 26-episode animated series loosely related to the first.

Koichi Mashimo co-wrote and directed the microseries, while Bee Train Animation and Production I.G animated it, and Bandai Entertainment acted as the North American distributor. The full-length anime series was handled by director and writer Mitsuru Hongo and was animated by Production I.G, with Bee Train returning for in-between animation. Production I.G president Mitsuhisa Ishikawa joined on as producer for the series. It was the first time he had worked on a joint U.S. Japanese production. [1]

The series' production was managed by Williams Street in Atlanta, Georgia. Bang Zoom! Entertainment in Burbank, California produced the English dub for the series, as well as adapted the scripts alongside Williams Street.

An IGPX video game was released on September 12, 2006, for the PlayStation 2.

IGPX microseries

The Immortal Grand Prix is a tournament between teams of gun-wielding mechs. As Team Velshtein is injured, the random drawing chooses Team Suzaku as the one to face Team Sledge Mamma, a trio of cybernetically-enhanced cyborgs. The lead pilot of Team Suzaku would be Takeshi Noa (Joshua Seth). At first, Team Suzaku do not have weapons because their mechanic U-Matsu (Kirk Thornton) forgot them. Amy (Sandy Fox) delivers weapons from Velshtein, but Team Suzaku has a hard time controlling them. Amy's cat co-pilot Luca (Kari Wahlgren) takes control and knocks Timmer (Steve Kramer) out of his mech. Liz (Kari Wahlgren), out of ammo, uses her capoeira image training. She is eventually at the mercy of an opposing pilot and surrenders. The Sledge Mamma mechs shoot at Takeshi, but Amy jumps in to save him and is out of the game. After being kicked around by the Sledge Mamma mechs, Takeshi reveals his plan. Using his ninjatō and shuriken, he knocks Dimmer (Michael McConnohie) and Yammer (Beau Billingslea) out of their mechs and wins.

IGPX TV series

The IGPX TV series made its hour-long premiere on November 5, 2005, at 10:00 pm. The series is set in 2049 and revolves around the Immortal Grand Prix, or IGPX, which is a mecha racing/battle circuit. The sport is so popular that an entire city has been built for the racing industry, where competitions take place on a huge Script error track. In the IGPX, two teams of three mechs, high-tech fighting machines driven by humans, race at speeds greater than Script error. The IGPX also contains fighting elements; attacking the opposing team to disable their mechs (thus preventing them from winning the race) is not only legal, but also expected. Team Satomi, a crew of amateur pilots, has just won a minor-league championship, the IG-2, vaulting them into the sport’s highest level, the IG-1. Now, the untested rookies of Team Satomi must overcome impossible odds and beat the world’s most skilled and ruthless pilots. The series was Toonami's first and only original series.

Rules of the IGPX

An IGPX race consists of two teams of three pilots: a forward (usually places first or second), a midfielder (usually places third or fourth), and a defender (usually places fifth or sixth). They compete on a Script error track, going at speeds upwards of Script error. The overall objective is to make it to the finish line and accumulate more points then the opponent. 1st place receives 15 points; 2nd receives 7 points; 3rd gets 5 points; 4th gets 3 points; 5th gets 2 points and 6th gets 1 point. No points are awarded to pilots who are unable to finish the race.

Lap one is basically a "setup" lap. Teams set up their positions on the track and troubleshoot any problems that the mechs may be having. In the second lap, also known as the "battle round", the teams now fight their way to the finish line. The pit machines, also known as the "running skeletons", are only employed during this lap. Each skeleton is designed to hold two people, one being the mechanic that fixes the mech, and has an open center that allows the mech to be held between the two cockpits while the parts for each mech are stored along the sides for quick replacement. However, the running skeleton can only be called on once for each team throughout the race. In the third lap, pilots are allowed to set their mechs into speed mode. Speed mode allows the mech to achieve maximum speed, and make a quick sprint to the finish line.

Characters

The pilots making up Team Satomi are forward Takeshi Jin, defender Liz Ricarro, and midfielder Amy Stapleton. The other members of Team Satomi include team owner Michiru Satomi and coach Andrei Rublev. The other teams in the IGPX are Black Egg, Edgeraid, Skylark, Sledge Mamma, Velshtein, and White Snow. Benjamin Bright is the announcer for the IGPX races.

Episodes

Episode # Season 1 Season 2
1
Time To Shine A New Challenge
<center>2 Win or Lose Feeling Lost
<center>3 Black Egg Vulnerable Mind
<center>4 The Ghost White Snow
<center>5 Come Together Puzzled
<center>6 Cat vs. Dog Moving On
<center>7 Spring has Come Comeback
<center>8 I Like You, I Like You, I Love You Decision
<center>9 Holiday Function, Not Fashion
<center>10 Showdown Fate
<center>11 And Then... Winner's Circle
<center>12 The Final Battle Hostile Contradiction
<center>13 Into Tomorrow The End and the Beginning

Team Satomi race record

Season 1 (2049)
Race Winner
Satomi v. Sledge Mamma Tie
Satomi v. Black Egg Satomi
Satomi v. Velshtein Velshtein
Satomi v. Edgeraid Satomi
Satomi v. Skylark Satomi
Satomi v. Sledge Mamma Satomi
Satomi v. Velshtein Satomi
Season 2 (2050)
Race Winner
Satomi v. Edgeraid Satomi
Satomi v. White Snow White Snow
Satomi v. Velshtein Tie
Satomi v. Skylark Satomi
Satomi v. Sledge Mamma Satomi
Satomi v. Velshtein Satomi
Satomi v. White Snow Satomi


Music

Opening theme
  • "Go For It!" by GRAN RODEO
Ending theme
  • "Believe yourself" by exige

IGPX promotions

  • A promotional DVD featuring Episode 1 ("Time to Shine"), the IGPX trailer, music, and a screensaver was distributed with Anime Insider v. 26 (November 2005).
  • The same was released with Nintendo Power v. 198 which was the December 2005 issue.
  • Special editions of the U.S. DVD volume 1 release came with a puff pack artbox, a Team Satomi T-shirt, the first episode from the microseries and team stickers, one for each of the teams from season one.

Allusions

  • Fantine Valjean's name is an allusion to the characters Fantine and Jean Valjean in the book Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. Likewise, Team Skylark member Elisa has the same name as the main character of Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw and as the leading lady in My Fair Lady.
  • Andrei Rublev bears the name of the Russian iconographer Andrei Rublev.
  • In the episode "Cat vs. Dog", there is a man who looks exactly like Gendo Ikari from Neon Genesis Evangelion. The man also sits with his hands crossed over his face, which was first done by Gendo and has been done in many other anime series. This character insertion was probably due to Production I.G working on both IGPX and the Evangelion movies.
  • The leader of Team Velshtein, Sir Hamgra, is an exact lookalike of Patrick Zala from Mobile Suit Gundam SEED.
  • In "Cat vs. Dog", the mecha of Team Edge Raid have GITS painted on their arms. This is a reference to Ghost in the Shell, a franchise animated by Production I.G, who also animated IGPX. Team Satomi's mechs have the word Absolute painted on their arms.
  • In the final episode of IGPX, Team Black Egg's symbol is shown on the TV located on one of the triple towers that surround the track, which only shows team emblems for IG-1. This suggests that Black Egg has regained their spot in IG-1, replacing Team Skylark after they are demoted to IG-2.
  • In the eighth episode of Reideen, a banner titled "Satomi" hangs in the city that Saiga Junki (the main protagonist) lives in. Production I.G's studio created both the IGPX and Reideen anime series.

References

  1. "Mitsuhisa Ishikawa (石川光久) President, Production I.G.". U.S.-Japan Innovators Network. Retrieved 2009-07-27. 

External links

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