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The Kirby Derby - Part I

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The Kirby Derby - Part I
E35 Scene 21.png
The five racing teams line up with their vehicles at the start of the Grand Prix.
First aired Japan June 8, 2002
NA February 8, 2003
Episode # 35
Episode # (US) 32
Copy Ability (Abilities) featured No
Monster(s) featured No
Character(s) featured Kirby, Tokkori, Tiff, Tuff, Hana, Mayor Len Blustergas, Meta Knight, King Dedede, Escargoon
Episode order
A Recipe for Disaster The Kirby Derby - Part II
Episode order (US)
Junk Jam The Kirby Derby - Part II
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The Kirby Derby - Part I is the 35th (32nd in the 4Kids broadcast) episode of the Kirby: Right Back at Ya! series. In this episode, after getting bullied off the road by Tuff in a go-kart, King Dedede orders a new Royal Racecar from Night Mare Enterprises and plans to use it to ruin his rivals in a formal race through Dream Land. After announcing the race, Tuff and Mayor Len Blustergas agree to enter it, but Tiff expressly bars Kirby from being Tuff's co-pilot, fearing for his safety. Despite this, Meta Knight seizes the race as an opportunity to repair Kirby's Starship and train the young Star Warrior to pilot it, superseding Tiff's authority. After all necessary vehicle modifications are complete, the race starts with five teams of racers: Kirby and Tokkori, Tiff and Tuff, Mayor Len and Hana, King Dedede and Escargoon, and Meta Knight alone who enters at the last second in his own vehicle. The episode ends on a cliffhanger during the race, which is followed up on by the next episode: The Kirby Derby - Part II.

This marks the first instance of a storyline being split into two parts in the series running. This episode also marks the first time that Hana has been in a leading role.


The following characters appear in this episode:

Cast of "The Kirby Derby - Part I"  
Character Selected quote
Primary characters
"Listen up! We're a team now, Pinky, and I ain't got time for a snoozer, cause I don't wanna be a loser!"
"Tuff! I almost got run over! You should stick to a tricycle!"
"Wow! Did you see me out there? I really rule the road!"
"I'm your navigator! You know how you always get lost when you drive, and you never ask for directions!"
"Hah! Car racing is the greatest sport there is, and I'm going to prove it to everyone at Cappy Town by entering and winning that race!"
"Let's see if we can breathe some life into this Starship! If we can manage to get the propulsion systems working, then...we may have a chance. Then comes the real test. We must test it thoroughly. That is why Kirby must enter the Grand Prix race!"
"Good! This here car's exactly what I need to put my plan into overdrive!"
"Trouble maker! I don't trust him, Sire. What if he tries to protect Kirby during the race?"
Secondary characters
"Do the race!"
"King Dedede has announced that he will sponsor the greatest sporting event in the history of Dream Land: the first ever Cappy Town Grand Prix Motor Race!"
"Grand Prix box lunches, right here!"
"Guess I won't be giving out any speeding tickets that day."
(Fololo) "Now a speech from our Grand Prix racer and host: King Dedede!"
(Falala) "Hopefully he's making a concession speech!"
"Kirby can't help you. You don't have a navigator, Tuff!"
"Grand Prix...that means big prize!"
"It's got a spaced-out driver, that's for sure!"
"Kirby? He'll sleep at the wheel!"
"Wear a seat belt, and take your time!"
"Good luck, Grandpa!"
"It looks like Kirby is heading for a crushing defeat! Find out his fate in the next exciting episode!"
"Let's just say, when a driver hits the road in this beauty it turns into a mechanical menace!"
"Racing isn't a real sport!"
"Really pull it on the straight-away, son!"
"I heard this car's really a space ship!"
"We finally got Kirby's Starship ready for the race, Meta Knight!"
"You're not gonna enter the Grand Prix with that ting![sic]"
(no dialogue)


Plot synopsis[edit]

King Dedede shows up in town with his Royal Racecar to boast ahead of the race.

The episode begins in Cappy Town, with Tuff and Kirby admiring a go-kart on display inside Gangu's toy store. Gangu decides to let Tuff try the kart out, and he proceeds to speed down the main road of town. Along the way, he passes Tiff, leaving her in a spin, and then chases down King Dedede and Escargoon to antagonize them. While doing this, Tuff hits a rock in the road which causes Kirby to get thrown out of the vehicle, and later lands on King Dedede's head after him and Escargoon jump into a river to get away. King Dedede swears to get revenge on Tuff for this action. Later, at Castle Dedede, the Monster Delivery System whirs into life and produces a new vehicle for King Dedede to use: the Royal Racecar, thus replacing the Armored Vehicle used up to this point. Meanwhile, Tuff is bragging about his vehicular exploits to Tiff when a special Channel DDD news bulletin occurs, where it is announced that King Dedede is hosting a Grand Prix motor race, and that all of Dream Land's citizens are eligible to enter.

As the Cappies hear this broadcast, Mayor Len endeavors to enter the race, and asks Gus to help transform his vehicle into a proper racecar. Tuff also decides to join the race using the go-kart he drove around earlier. As the Cappies gather around these two contestants, King Dedede shows up in his new car. As he attempts to show sportsmanship, Tuff decides to mess around on his car. At that moment, however, Tiff interjects and insists to both Tuff and King Dedede that Kirby will not be participating in the event, as she fears for his safety, but King Dedede schemes to make it otherwise. That night, at the castle, Tiff tries to convince Kirby to stay out of the race, but he is lured by a trail of plates of pancakes into the castle depths while Tiff is not looking. Tiff and Tokkori go off looking and soon find the trail of empty plates. They catch up with Kirby and attempt to get him out of a suspected trap when they discover a room containing Kirby's Starship, which Tiff had assumed was lost after the events of Kirby Comes to Cappy Town. At that moment, Meta Knight shows up and explains his intentions.

Meta Knight and his soldiers work to repair Kirby's Starship for the race.

Meta Knight reveals that he intends to repair Kirby's Starship and then test it by having Kirby participate in King Dedede's race. Tiff is still upset at the notion of Kirby entering the race, but with Meta Knight's insistence, she relents begrudgingly and allows Kirby to join it, as King Dedede and Escargoon look on in secret. The next day, as Mayor Len gets his car ready, Hana becomes furious at him for entering the race; particularly because the day of the race falls on the couple's anniversary and he seems to have forgotten about it. Meanwhile, Gangu finishes his adjustments on the go-kart to make it race-worthy, but points out to Tuff that he still has no navigator since Kirby cannot join him. At the same time, Meta Knight and his apprentices get to work repairing the Starship. Meta Knight then shows Kirby to a special "test model" of the Starship that he built for Kirby to practice racing with, complete with a virtual race track. After explaining the controls, Meta Knight prompts Kirby and Tokkori to get in and try it out. After a haphazard practice run, the test model gets thrown off the track and is wrecked, but Kirby regardless enjoyed the experience. That night, the various entrants to the race sleep in and around the cars, and Meta Knight receives word from his apprentices that the Starship is ready.

King Dedede launches a missile from his racecar at a nearby cliff to make rocks fall on Kirby and Tokkori.

The next day, the people of Cappy Town gather for the race to commence. As Mayor Len steps into his car, Hana makes a surprise appearance outfitted in a racer's jumpsuit, having had a change of heart and wishing to be with her husband on their anniversary day. Kirby is joined by Tokkori in order to keep him on track and stop him from napping in the driver's seat. Lastly, Tiff gets over her obstinance and joins Tuff as his navigator in order to keep an eye on Kirby, much to Tuff's bemusement. Fololo & Falala take the announcer's podium to commentate over the race as it is about to start. King Dedede attempts to make a speech prior to the race, but the Cappies boo him off stage. After listing off the racers, Fololo & Falala are informed that Meta Knight will be joining the race at the last minute in his own vehicle, the Meta-Mobile. Tiff asks Meta Knight why he is joining the race, and he answers that he wishes to test his own racing skills. After Tokkori wakes Kirby up again, Captain Waddle Doo waves the checkered flag and the racers set off, but Kirby and Tokkori forget how to start their car. After fiddling around with the controls, Kirby's Starship sets off at high speed and quickly catches up with the rest of the racers. After a brief detour, Kirby and Tokkori end up right behind King Dedede, who sets off his first trap by shooting at the cliffisde to make rocks fall on them. The episode ends on a cliffhanger as the rocks fall.

Differences between versions[edit]

Japanese-exclusive scene where Gangu sells miniature versions of the racers' vehicles.
  • In the Japanese version, the calendar showing Mayor Len and Hana's anniversary date says "JUNE" on it. This is removed in the international versions, where no month is displayed.
  • In the Japanese version, there is a short scene at the start of the race where Gangu is selling miniature versions of the racers' vehicles. This scene includes models of Meta Knight's vehicle, which may explain why it was cut in the international versions, as Meta Knight had not officially entered the race yet at that time.
    • Another minor scene is cut shortly after which features the garages of the various racers.
  • In the Japanese version, Fololo & Falala explain the course in a little more detail with a few extra shots.
  • In the international versions, a short scene is cut from the start of the race where Chef Kawasaki complains about the publicity Gangu is getting over his vehicle.
  • In the Japanese version, an arrangement of "Revenge of Meta Knight (Map)" plays just as the race starts.

Dialogue differences[edit]

  • In the Japanese version, when Mayor Len and Hana are initially arguing, they cannot be heard over the sound of the engine being tested by Gus.
  • In the Japanese version, Kirby repeats the word "lever" when Meta Knight points it out to him. He also shouts "Race! Race!" when starting the test vehicle. In the international versions, he just says "poyo" again in both instances.
  • In the Japanese version, King Dedede's short speech prior to the race cannot be heard at all over the roar of the crowd of Cappies.
  • In the international versions, a narrator chimes in at the end of the episode, whereas no narration occurs in the Japanese version.


  • This is the first episode in the series to make use of an external narrator who is not present in-universe.
  • When Kirby is discovering the trail of pancakes Meta Knight left for him, he can be seen and heard sniffing them out, which seems to imply that he has nostrils, even if they cannot be seen on his face.


Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese 栄光のプププグランプリ 前編
Eikō no Pupupu Guran Puri Zenpen
The Glorious Pupupu Grand Prix Part 1
German Das Kirby-Derby, Teil 1 The Kirby-Derby, Part 1