Race Against Danger
|The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest|
|"Race Against Danger"|
|Airdate||December 16, 1996|
|Chief locations||South Sea Island - 164.83E, 12.37S (7,590 miles)|
|Guest roles|| Rob Paulsen (Hill)|
Frank Welker (Dr. Zin / Computer Voice)
Greg Burson (Corbin / Sanderson)
Nick Chinlund (Temple)
David Fennoy (Clark / Guard)
Julian Sands (Kreed)
|Episode sequence||Bloodlines <--> The Dark Mountain|
Race Bannon and the team visit Intelligence One training grounds to survey new cloaking mask technology. But when an old enemy shows up, Jonny and Race must run the obstacle course to fight for their lives.
Two Intelligence One agents emerge from the sea to race through an obstacle course in hopes of beating Race Bannon's record time. Trees and roots begin firing lasers and snagging them, much to their surprise and peril. One agent falls into a pit beneath the false cover of grass, while the other is killed by four roots. The operator of the testing grounds regrets that they did not make it very far, but hopes to see better from Race. The obstacle course is then revealed to be a futuristic mesh of mechanical parts and weapons. Some time later, the Quest team without Jessie travels to the course, shown to be set on a small island in the ocean near Australia. Agent Phil Corbin demonstrates to the team the island's holographic capabilities, performed through a "cloaking mask" which can change the landscape's appearance. Dr. Quest is amazed, though Race is worried about the technology's ability to hide entire armies. Corbin soon states that the effect is possible thanks to Dr. Quest's quantum optical research, which allowed "your" American scientists to develop it. The team catch the strange wording, and are soon gassed by Corbin, who exposes the observing generals and his own appearance as a hologram. Standing in his place is Lucius Kreed, an old enemy of Race.
Jonny and Race wake up tied together by metallic wristbands. Race explains that he first encountered Kreed on his first field mission twelve years ago in Greenland. Race and his mentor, Greg Temple, were assigned to take the villain down, as he dealt in arms, stolen technology, and other vice—earning Race's designation, "the Renaissance man of scum." Just as Kreed seals a deal with Dr. Zin, Race and Greg blow open the door to his chamber and begin a firefight. Stray bullets cause a fire to quickly spread, and also pierce the gas canisters. Kreed breathes in nerve gas while Greg is blocked from exiting by falling pieces of the roof; he tells Race to escape as Kreed makes one final physical assault. Back on the beach, Kreed appears in the form of a hologram and relates that he personally commandeered the island and aims to sell the technology. Declaring that a good demonstration video is needed, he shows footage of agents Clark and Hill from the previous night to Race's disgust. Race correctly guesses that they must complete the course or else Dr. Quest and Hadji will be harmed. Kreed then removes their restraints; they quickly enter the training grounds.
Jonny soon falls into the pit, but Race catches him. Noticing what appear to be bamboo spikes, Jonny unscrews two with his feet to find metal spikes which they later carry. Their trek takes them into the same vines that killed Hill; remembering the metal noises from Kreed's footage, Jonny pierces the tree of their origin with his spike. This destroys the vines' control mechanism. Before they can rest, flamethrowers force them to run at breakneck pace to escape. Race hurls his spike like a javelin into the base of the flame tree, damaging the entire area's cloak circuitry in the process. They continue through a machine gun booby-trapped tunnel while Dr. Quest and Hadji struggle to find a way out of their prison. Hadji locates a vent which is just large enough for Bandit to pass through. Meanwhile, Race and Jonny enter a rocky, desert landscape, housing the original climbing tower. As they near the top, the cloaking technology deactivates, and a piece of the metallic island below opens to reveal spikes. Lasers begin shooting out of all the footholds in the tower; Jonny and Race frantically struggle to reach the top as the lasers crumble part of the outcropping. They find a rope connected to a snowy region far below; Jonny suggests they shimmy down. Race is aware of the danger posed to them as slow moving targets, and uses their wristband to quickly slide down the rope.
A laser cannon breaks the rope, leading to a rough landing. As Kreed curses Jonny for actually proving useful to Race, Hadji informs the prison guard that Bandit is loose. As he gets up to catch the dog, Hadji declares that Benton is now gone as well. The goon enters the room with his gun drawn, and is quickly knocked out by double-fisted blows from both Hadji and Dr. Quest (who curse his thick skull afterwards). Dr. Quest enters the computer mainframe, discovering that the island is powered by a fusion reactor. Though he can't shut the illusion down from that area, he has an idea. Race and Jonny are also struck by inspiration, and break the wristband by allowing an image of Kreed to fire upon it. Down the ice cavern they find what appears to be Corbin beneath a spiked ceiling of ice. Race nearly tries to rescue him, but Jonny throws debris at the agent, which results in a metallic clank. Kreed laughs as tentacles erupt from the illusion's body. At the other end, Jonny and Race find Benton and Hadji, who note they've escaped but that Bandit didn't make it. Leg shackles erupt from the floor as Dr. Quest and Hadji's faces open to reveal machine guns.
Kreed watches as the two adventurers are apparently gunned down. He turns off the monitor, but as he exits the control station he is punched and knocked back by Race. The entire team follows him in. Dr. Quest boasts that he sent misinformation to the cloaking mask, creating illusions of Jonny and Race while Hadji led the genuine articles away from the obstacle course. Race then declares that only one person called him "Racer", and smashes the control station's keyboard—melting away the hologram of Kreed to show Greg Temple, his old partner. Temple apparently assumed Kreed's identity upon his death and enjoyed the power and wealth afforded by his position. Race speculates that the nerve gas warped his mind, and Temple responds with violence. He activates the island's self-destruct sequence and disappears down an escape hatch; the team flee in the Dragonfly Jet. Temple then deactivates the sequence, but his gloating is cut short by the island's still-active gunfire. He drops the destruct remote as he dies, reactivating the sequence. Race arms the jet's electromagnetic pulse countermeasures and flies away from the nuclear blast.
- Race - "Let me guess. We have to run your little maze of death or you'll hurt Hadji and the Doc. Am I in the ballpark?"
- Kreed - "A home run, mister Bannon."
- Race - "Jonny, you can be my handicap any time."
- Hadji - "I am sorry to disturb you Mr. Goon, but would you please return our dog?"
- Race - "Why did you do it, Greg?"
- Temple - "Why do you think, you overgrown Boy Scout? The excitement; the thrills; all that money!"
- Jonny should at least receive a mild shock from plunging a metal spike into a component of a massive metallic grid (complete with electricity effects).
- Kreed is shown doing business twelve years ago with Dr. Zin, complete with hair and a younger voice. Zin was purchasing experimental nerve gas.
- Race earned his nickname through quick obstacle course runs.
- Despite knowing him for a few years, Jonny never learned Race's real name until this chain of events.
- Hadji gets his jewel back in the turban starting with this episode. Finding a suitable replacement for the last one wasn't tough as Sultan, apparently!
- The first view of the Dragonfly's cockpit resembles the setup of the characters in the classic series's famous opening.
- The Quest Byte depicts the deletion of a "Saturn" file after a winding journey.
Lance Falk Behind-the-Scenes #5
Subj: Behind the Scenes 5
Date: 97-02-23 11:19:58 EST
Hi Questoids, as promised, here's all the news that's fit to print on "Race Against Danger"
Back in 86, H-B started a thirteen episode run of Jonny Quest. I was just an HB stock boy at that time, trying to break in to the toon biz. "Jonny Quest!" I thought. "I have to work on that. It's my all time favorite cartoon!" I tried everything including a few story ideas. None of them sold (very understandable, as I look on them now. Pretty clunky stuff) As it turned out, my drawing skills were further along and Jim Stenstrum gave me my big break as a model artist for the show. (Jim is the Season Two art director too. A great guy).
Flash forward a decade. Now I have a lot more experience and writing ability than the kid in the stockroom had. A few Produced scripts behind me (SWAT Kats mostly) got me the opportunity to write for JQ (finally!) Just for fun, I dusted off my old ideas and a few seemed pretty usable. "Race Against Danger" was the only one that got made but it's remarkably similar to it's humble beginnings. All mis-spelled and awkwardly worded on a single sheet of typing paper. I wish I could go back in time to show that stockboy it finally got made. Two of my other old ideas are workable and I might use them yet if the opportunity arises. What have we learned today?
A. Keep at it.
B. Never throw anything out!
Okay, time for the Questoid Factoids on "Race Against Danger"
1. The original title was "Race Against Death" I liked this title so much, I built a whole story around it. Then someone got skittish about the word "death" and we had to change it. It is still refered to around the office as "Race Against Death" which is an actual phrase AND a play on words. "Race Against Danger" doesn't really mean anything. sigh.......
2. Corbin is a character from the Classic Series. ("Mystery of the Lizard Men" and "Riddle of the Gold") He's used here as he was then: Race's boss. Corbin's original voice was the late, great Daws Butler. Our Corbin is Greg Burson, Daws' protege' (the new Yogi Bear).
3. 'Kreed' is Julian Sands from the Warlock movies. The ladies went a bit nuts, let me tell ya.
4. This show features Race's first field assignment (in flashback), and explains where the "Race' nickname originated.
5. Clark and Hill are named after two good friends who worked with us on SWAT Kats. (Eric Clark and Scott Hill). Scott said to me: "Thanks for tossing me into a spiked tiger pit, pal!"
6. An early idea also had Jessie and Jade cuffed together running the maze with Jonny and Race, but there was no time, so we moved the Jessie/Jade meeting to "Diamonds and Jade"
7.Another scrapped idea was my "Fanboy gallery" rather than multiple Kreed holograms, Jonny and Race were going to be shot at by a Classic JQ rogues gallery (Which would have been known to Temple as a thing to rattle Jonny and Race). A Robot Spy, Baron Von Froelich, Zin's hovercraft goons, etc. Davis was right in changing it. Too "inside".
8. The double twist at the end was made up on the spot and doesn't exist in the outline. (Showing a difference in sophistication between now and my 86 plotting abilities, I guess)
9. We get a glimpse of a young Dr. Zin (with hair yet!) in the flashback sequence. Little does Race realize that he has been thwarting Zin for years. Kreed, then Temple as Kreed has been supplying Zin (and other badguys) with sinister gear for years.
10. The "Racer" thing was just a plot point and will not resurface. We'd have to keep explaining it for those who missed R.A.D. Not worth the trouble. He HAS a nickname anyway, right?
11. The ending can be taken in two ways (up to the viewer to decide)
A. The logical, rational explination: The island's programing malfunctioned in just the right way and time to kill Temple OR...
2. The symbolic answer: Temple was killed by the spirit of Kreed. A man who's life he had stolen.
The show was so "Tech" that I wanted to add a hint of the mystical, I guess. I like a mixture.