JNC THEATER: A drama about a nameless racer, a car designer, and the “Nagoya” 2000GT

Promotion has begun for a new TV drama in Japan that crosses Speed Racer and a A Night at the Museum. Called Midnight Supercar, the star car is a 2000GT and the museum is the Toyota Automobile Museum itself. 

Despite the manga cover illustration in the lead image, Midnight Supercar is a live-action production starring Mizuki Yamamoto, who plays a young car designer named Yuki Shiro at the “the largest automaker in the world.” That company, conveniently located in Aichi Prefecture, is called Nagoya Motors, and Yuki dreams of creating a car as legendary as the Nagoya 2000GT.

Obviously that’s a thinly disguised stand-in for Toyota, and the next part is even more pointed. According to the official summary (via Google Translate), “the trend of the times is a functionally packed and safety-first family car that is user friendly.” However, Yuki believes that driving is the real joy to be found in cars and soon comes in conflict with her boss.

She is demoted and transferred to a different department responsible for the thing she hates most — autonomous cars. Depressed about creating cars devoid of driving enjoyment, Yuki thinks of quitting her dream job and visits the Nagoya Automobile Museum for solace.

So far, it’s a fairly realistic scenario (perhaps striking even too close to home) and would make an excellent drama as is. The museum scenes were even filmed in the actual Toyota Automobile Museum in Aichi, where the promotional photo above was taken. The next part, though, is where it gets totally bonkers.

The synopsis continues. The museum’s old security guard seems to know more than he’s letting on about the Nagoya 2000GT displayed in the halls that he patrols. He warns Yuki that things get strange at the museum at night, so of course while admiring the 2000GT she loses track of time and stays past closing.

At the same time, a thief breaks into the facility with plans to steal the 2000GT that night. But when the clock strikes midnight, the museum shifts into an otherworldly dimension and mysterious characters come to life. One of them, a man in a red-on-white racing suit, turns up to defend the 2000GT, and that’s where the synopsis ends.

What remains are suspense-building questions. Will Yuki be able to return to the real world safely? What secrets are hidden in the birth of the legendary Nagoya 2000GT? Tune in and find out! Sadly, there are no plans currently for a DVD release or English subtitled version. Midnight Supercar premieres on March 28 on NHK.

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6 Responses to JNC THEATER: A drama about a nameless racer, a car designer, and the “Nagoya” 2000GT

  1. Nigel said:

    Sounds quite cool to me. (Could there be a battle on old Fuji speedway ) ??

  2. Ant said:

    Interesting to know whether the show has been part-funded or commissioned by Toyota. Strikes me that Yuki’s attitude probably isn’t dissimilar from that of driving-mad Akio Toyoda. I’m sure that and the use of the 2000GT as the star car are just coincidental, but you never know.

  3. Tom Westmacott said:

    Wow, I really want to see this now! All my favourite things combined. I hope it gets a fansub.

    I wonder how many real-life car designers there are who have been feeling fed up since MPVs and SUVs overtook the market for performance cars in the 90s?

  4. Iwakuni91 said:

    Question: does anybody know the name of those brown racing shoes he’s wearing next to the 2000GT?

  5. Greyfox said:

    Shows like these don’t get made unless they have cross promotion support from interested ‘3rd parties’, more then likely in this case, Toyota… Correct me if I am wrong, but doesn’t Japan have a problem with the new generation less willing to learn to drive? Isn’t it a bit coincidental that the new generation not wanting to learn to drive (not just in Japan), coincides with cars becoming incredibly boring safety appliances with touchscreens?

    Here is talent agency profile of Mizuki Yamamoto (山本 美月 ): http://www.incent.jp/incent/talent/yamamoto/index.html

    And here is the NHK site for the movie/drama: http://www.nhk.or.jp/nagoya/supercar/

  6. ken said:

    I have an original Toyota brochure for this car and it is very good condition, with the correct outer folder. I nearly bought a 2000 GT from a local auction many years ago but even $60,000 dollars was to much for me back then and the paint work needed attention.
    Regards Ken.

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