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THE THOMAS TRAIN
The Thomas train

Original title: Thomas and Friends
Characters:
Thomas the Tank Engine, Edward the Blue Engine ,, Henry the Green Engine, Gordon the Big Engine, James the Red Engine, Percy the Small Engine, Toby the Tram Engine, Emily the Excellent
Authors: Britt Allcroft, David Mitton
Production: Gullane Entertainment, HiT Entertainment, Nitrogen Studios, Arc Productions
Directed by: David Mitton, Steve Asquith
Country: UK
Year: September 4 1984
Broadcast in Italy: 2010
Gender: Trains
Episodes: 466
duration: 5 minutes
Recommended age: Children from 0 to 5 years old

Monday to Friday at 6,45 am on Italy 1

The Thomas Train children's cartoons (original title: Thomas and Friends) are taken from the short stories of the Reverend WV Awdry entitled "The Railway Series". The first series broadcast in 1984 was made with the animation technique in stop motion, with models of dynamic electric trains, but it is since 2008 that it is made entirely in CGI computer graphics. by Britt Allcroft, directed by Steve Asquith. The Italian narrator is by Giorgio Locuratolo.

The events take place on the island of Sodor, surrounded by a splendid blue sea, golden sand, windmills and various tourist attractions, all connected by many railway lines where the little train Thomas and his friends work, directed by Sir Topam.

The episode "Edward the Rock" features the old Edward locomotive, which although not the fastest is certainly the most reliable. Sir Topam announces that a brand new water wheel has just arrived on the island, which will have to replace the old mill wheel, which is under the great waterfalls. Then he entrusts the task of transport to the train Edward. He will take the direct express line for the great falls, the one that usually used the Gordon locomotive. Placing the large water wheel on the floor, Edward began his journey, but decided not to take the express route, because he wanted everyone to admire the new water wheel. Passing through the stations, beside the farms, he was able to be greeted and encouraged by all for that important mission. Arriving at an exchange station, he found himself choosing to take the bumpy track that needed repairs, but which led in front of a school, or take the safer track. Edward decided to take the first direction, to show the wheel to the school children. The continuous jolts began to wear down the ropes that tied the big wheel, but Edward did not notice. At school the children cheered and cheered, but they distracted the Edwards train from the red light. He found himself forced to stop abruptly and this movement continued to cut the ropes of the wheel. Realizing the delay, he tried to take the mountainous road, to shorten the journey. The climb proved very tiring, due to the heavy load and the train Edward snorted and panted. Eventually he made it to the top and then quickly down the descent to the great falls. Suddenly the rope snapped and the big waterwheel rolled off the train and went over the wreckage of the Gordon Train, headed for the foundry. To save the wheel, Edward had only to get to the foundry before Gordon, using all the shortcuts he knew. When Gordon arrived at the doors of the foundry, he found Edward waiting for him ready to collect his wheel. The waterwheel was finally delivered and Edward realized that it did not take the approval of passersby to understand that he had accomplished a great feat.

In the episode "Thomas and the Old Slow Carriage", the little train Thomas and his friends trains observe the beautiful spring morning sky. Everyone is happy except the little train James, because as summer approaches, he will have to travel along the coastal stretches instead of the country tracks, which are so dear to him. Thomas the train arrived at a siding, meets an old sad carriage, because it has fallen into disuse, which sooner or later will have to be scrapped. Thomas and his friends promise to lend a hand to the old carriage. Meanwhile, the James train, which was carrying a load of fuel, catches fire. James is desperate and reached a siding, his machinist gives the alarm. The train Thomas and Percy rush to their aid and the driver explains that some sparks coming from the chimney of the James train, had originated the fire powered by fuel. Now the situation was under control. Returning to the station Percy and James saw another fire developing in the workers' shack. Unfortunately, given the scarcity of water, the firefighters are forced to burn the building, but the Thomas train came up with an idea. It was necessary to use water from the tanks of their wagons. So the firefighters wasted no time and put Thomas's proposal into practice, taming the fire, but they couldn't do anything to save the shack where the workers lived, because it was completely destroyed. Now it was necessary to find new housing for the workers. The Percy train suggested using the old slow carriage: it would have been even more comfortable than the old shack. Thus refurbished, the old carriage thanked the train Thomas and Percy, who hooked it up, transported it to its new destination.

In the episode "The Discovery of Toby" the director "Sir Topam" and his grandchildren go to visit the Toby wagon, to take a trip to the sea. Arriving at a small maritime station, the children play happily with the sand and build a beautiful castle. On the island there was really an ancient castle, so on board the Toby train they decided to go and explore it. They soon reached the wildest part of the island and stopping at an isolated toll booth, asked for directions. After the driver had operated the switch, the Toby train drove through a tangled forest of branches and bushes until it reached another branch. The track split in two directions: one led to the castle, the other to the old mines. Sir Topam decided to go to the castle first. Stopping near an old water tank, Toby and his passengers saw the beautiful castle, which dominated from the top of a mountain. Later they went to the old mine, now abandoned, where there were also trains. Sir Topam believes that once refurbished, both the castle and the old mine can become a major tourist attraction. Soon the director's plans were put into action, but the little train Toby remained fearful, because he thought the place was bewitched. The little train Thomas certainly did not encourage him, when he told him the legend of the ghost of the old warrior: every night his soul lights a bonfire and then goes hunting. The train Toby shivered, precisely because that night he had to guard the old mine. As darkness fell and the fog arrived, the landscape became ghostly and suddenly there was a chilling noise. Toby immediately thought of the ghost of the warrior, but the machinist who was with him decided to go and have a look. The noise came from a small locomotive, which everyone calls "the old warrior" because it is always ready for big business. Thus refurbished, the old locomotive and Toby accompanied the visitors to the old castle and the mine for interesting sightseeing trips.

To signal the nice theme, which invites children to sing:

The lights go on and chug chug
but what a happy railway
they are red, green or blue
but what a nice company
who in the station whistles and goes
who the timber will bring
punctual trains that
they run up and down.

Thomas, who makes trouble
James, he never stops
Percy, he has a tender heart
Gordon, roars and grumbles
Emily, she goes along the sea
Henry, smiles, runs and goes
Edward, how it glitters
Toby, whistle and say hi ...

All the names, images and registered trademarks of the Thomas Train are copyright © HIT Entertainment / Apax / WV Awdry and are used here for cognitive and informative purposes.

Other links
Thomas the Train Coloring Pages
Thomas Train Articles
Thomas the Train DVD

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