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  • Thomas the tank engine is a real classic series. The series is about a group of trains on an island. The railroads, the trains and the scenery are all very well-made, and it is worth seeing some episodes just for that. I remember watching the series when I was a kid, and I still still like to watch an episode now and then.
  • Even though Thomas the Tank Engine is aimed at children, adults can enjoy it just as much as kids. That is because unlike many children's shows today, Thomas the Tank Engine does not dumb the show down to ridiculously low levels. Children of all ages, even infants, can learn lots of things by watching this show...possibly even more so than the dumbed-down kids shows they have now. All the characters are fantastic, and the setting looks so realistic and well designed. Although the show's golden years are probably over, its new episodes are still relatively decent. May Thomas the Tank Engine live on for generations and generations!
  • I speak not only as a thomas the tank engine fan, but as a rail enthusiast and volunteer on a preserved railway, that thomas the tank engine is the best children's stories based on railways of all time. as i am myself a railway worker, i have been introduced to tasks and jobs that have been accurately included and described in thomas the tank engine, although the later stories are a bit of a disappointment to me as they seem to lack the element of the original railway knowledge and enthusiasm. but they are still very good stories and i will certain to say that i will indeed introduce thomas the tank engine to my children, and then the real thing of course as i have been. it did surprise me how real the stories really are, as many incidents and situations included in the stories are based on real locomotives and situations in the railway world, most children's stories are completely fiction and totally deny the gratitude and the commendation that they deserve for creating the 21st century possible. thank you reverand awdry for making my railway life a reality.
  • Thomas the tank engine is one of my favorite shows as kid and still is its number 3 of my favorite shows after doctor who and the simpsons I just a really big fan of Thomas as kid used to get the toys and the hornby models used to make up my own storys about them I do a series about them know and got three bachmann Thomas models which are Thomas James and Edward and I am planing to do my own layout with my train models I used to have the dvds of this series I had classic storys of Thomas of season 1 2 3 4 and 5 I also had season 6 and the movie okay the show is about Thomas a talking train who works very hard and finds out about things my favorite characters are Herny Edward Terrence Duck Percy Duke and almost all of the characters this is a great show for kids see you don't have to grow up soon you can be a boy and a girl you can never be old for this show okay some teenagers like ones who think they are really cool are going to be bored with it but if you have been a fan of this series even as a kid you will love it this show is just great and is very well done I give this show a 10 out of 10 very good.
  • Wow! This is a really cute, fun, and entertaining show. I said that because I watch this on Nickelodeon and the Noggin network with my 2½-year-old nephew from time to time. It's hard to say which show on Nickelodeon and the Noggin network is the best. If I had to pick, this would definitely be one of the cutest. Still it's really cute, fun, entertaining, and educational. Also, it's hard to say which episode is my favorite. Before I wrap this up, I'd like to say that the people at Nickelodeon and the Noggin network really know how to reach a toddler's developing mind. Now, in conclusion, if you have children, nieces, or nephews, I strongly recommend this really cute, fun, and entertaining. I guarantee you that they will enjoy it.
  • mikedealy17 February 2010
    I'm currently 14 years old, and I still love this show, and I don't care what anyone else thinks. I've been a fan of "Thomas the Tank Engine" ever since I was born. In fact, I grew up with this show. It's about a blue tank engine named Thomas who lives on the Island of Sodor with all of his friends. He goes out on adventures whether pulling passengers or shunting freight cars in the quarry. I own a lot of videos and DVDs of this show, but the first Thomas tape I've ever watched in my life could be possibly "Thomas Gets Tricked".

    My favorite character from this show would be Percy the small green engine. Some evidence from that is green is my favorite color and I like the number 6. My other favorite characters include James, Edward, Toby, and Thomas himself. Overall, "Thomas the Tank Engine" is a timeless classic that can be enjoyed by any person of any age. This is the best show ever.

    Final Score: 100/100 (Awesome)
  • Pika K25 January 2002
    Thomas the Tank Engine has been around on the television since 1984, and its clear to see why. Everything is made to a great standard of quality, and it offers a sense of originality.

    Who would of thought that The Reverend Wilbert Awdry had originally only written these stories as bed time stories for Christopher Awdry, when he was ill. These stories were first written during the 1920's, and when they eventually got published into books, known as The Railway Series, and then onto television.

    Although not all the stories are based on The Railway Series lately, they still have the same impact.

    I think its safe to say that Thomas and his friends will be around for a very long time to come.
  • I never watched Thomas as a kid. I didn't know about Thomas the Tank Engine until several years ago. My son got into Thomas when he was about a year old. One of his playmates had a lot of Thomas trains and he played with them a lot whenever they saw each other. I thought that since my son liked playing with the trains, he might like watching the series. I bought him The Best of James on DVD and he loved it! He is now 18 months old, and he dances to the music in between each story. I like the series because it teaches kids about working together as a team, and lending a helping had when someone really needs it (like the time James' brakes were jammed and Percy had to come and rescue him, or when James realized he was going too fast because he had no driver and Edward had to come and rescue him)and the value of friendship and being honest.
  • I admit it, while I am 17 now, I am still quite found of Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends. And I loved it as a kid, in fact my whole family did, so much so my brother was literally obsessed with it, having his own Thomas train set and everything. This series is simply put a classic, with outstanding story ideas, and stay true to the brilliant stories by Reverend Wilbert Awdry. The setting for especially the Island of Sodor itself is fantastically done, almost exactly as I would visualise it. And the characters are engaging, from the main character down to the secondary ones. The Fat Controller/Sir Topham Hatt has a certain firmness but genuinely cares for the trains, who without a doubt steal the show. As much as I like James, Gordon and Percy, Thomas will always be my favourite. The music is memorable and easy for young toddlers to hum along too and the narration was perfect. If I did have a complaint, and a minor one, I do agree that the newer episodes are inferior in quality to the older ones, but they are still watchable. All in all, a must watch while you are growing up. 10/10 Bethany Cox
  • I loved this series when I was a kid and just had to write about it! It's so cute with the characters and the magical music theme and RINGO! If you watch repeats of this classic series you'll find that it hasn't lost it's magic and is perfect for children of all ages to learn about.
  • Thomas and Friends, has been around for years now, first on television and later on video and DVD. Many parents may now be discovering it for the first time on DVD and wonder "Is it a good show for young viewers?"

    In my opinion, this is an excellent program for young children, especially toddlers (age 2 and up). This program uses stop motion model trains as its central characters and each episode teaches a practical life lesson about getting along with others, sharing and in general respect for others. This is done in way that is both fun and exciting for little kids. These videos/DVDs used in conjunction with reading some of the Thomas books and playing with the toy trains can be used as teaching tools for parents. Young children can learn things like colors, numbers and increase their vocabulary. Many of the newer DVDs contain interactive features such as memory games. I've been amazed as my 2 and 3 year old gets the answers right.

    In conclusion, the older Thomas shows are well written, mostly based on the original children books by W.Awdry and narrated by the likes of Ringo Star and Alec Baldwin. They hold up very well now and will be quickly adored by the average 2 and 3 year old.

    The newer incarnation of Thomas and Friends available on DVD features improved animation techniques and more interactive/teaching features. Visually more appealing, the newer stories are written more for younger viewers in mind (and not just following the books).

    In a world where many shows and movies supposedly for young children are full of violence and fighting, the Thomas and Friends DVD collection is a safe, gentle place for parents and their young children.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    When I was a little girl, around 5 or so, my favorite toys were the metal and wooden trains baring the likenesses of Thomas the Tank Engine and his friends. I had tons of books and videos on locomotives, including the entire collection of all the original printed Thomas stories and just about every Thomas video under the sun. I was hooked on trains, and I was hooked on Thomas. The little blue tank engine and his array of amusing companions was the highlight of my childhood.

    To this day, even at 21 years old, I still love trains and Thomas and his friends. But, before I give my review, I will give my honest say on what I think of the series now that it seems to have gotten a major overhaul in animation, narration and script. I only watch the seasons narrated by Ringo Starr and George Carlin, which include all the original stories written by the Rev. W. Awdry. In my opinion, no other narrators after them have lived up to the Thomas name, nor did any of the material written after Awdry's stories (and his son's) were filmed even touch the brilliance of the original volumes. I'm no fan of Angelis, Brandon or Baldwin. There are way too many new characters to count; my favorites will always be those that emanated from Awdry's mind (save for Salty; I do like him). I can see why they would introduce more 'female' characters to the series, but enough is enough honestly. (Of the original two female engines Daisy and Mavis, Mavis was my favorite.) As soon as Baldwin took over as narrator and Awdry's stories gave way to the show writers and the classic, beautiful live-action filming became blotched and bloated with CGI, I stopped watching. The feature film 'Thomas and the Magic Railroad', as cute as it is, does no justice to the original series and the charms of the 'Shining Time Station' show. How I yearn for the Golden Years of my beloved children's show.

    When I first saw Thomas and his friends, I fell in love. I loved everything about it. The characters, the stories, the settings, the music, the animation, the narration. Thomas is the main character of the series, but my favorite is and will always be James the Red Engine. Thomas is described as 'a cheeky little engine' who generally has a sunny and easy-going attitude about railway life. He runs a branchline with his two coaches Annie and Clarabelle. He sometimes gets himself into trouble, partakes in some rather clever and sometimes hilarious banter with Gordon (the big, proud and blue mainline engine), and serves as the other half of a sweet friendship he has with Percy (the little round green engine). Some of the other main characters include Gordon, Percy, Henry (the big green and often sickly engine), Edward (the older, wise blue tender engine), my favorite firecracker James, and of course, the famous Fat Controller, a.k.a. Sir Topham Hatt. My favorite characters besides James are Edward, Duck (the Great Western Engine), Donald the Scottish engine, and Bill the yellow tank engine. Of the Narrow Gauge Engines, my favorites are Peter Sam (Stuart), Duncan and Skarloey.

    The narration, by Starr and Carlin, is absolutely superb. Starr, although he lends the same voice tone to almost all of the characters, still exudes a lively overture to our metal pals and captures the essence of each character perfectly as the series' first narrator. His powerful turn in the 'Trouble In The Shed' episode still gives me chills, and no one, not even Carlin, can tell the story of 'The Flying Kipper' as grippingly as Starr. When Carlin started narrating, I was treated to an even more splendid and often hilarious telling of the Reverend's stories, and unlike Starr, Carlin gives almost every engine their very own voice. His best vocals include the authentic accent for the sleek and sly Scottish Twins Donald and Douglas, the deep and aging timbre of proud Gordon and the mischievous squeaking of the quarry twins Bill and Ben. He adds that classic arrogant pipe to my boy James perfectly, and his slick and oily resonance for the show's main villain, Diesel, is velvety-smooth and refined like the lies Diesel tells.

    The stories and writing were all very good until they ran out of ideas from Awdry's and Christopher Awdry's stories and started writing their own, which began right around Carlin's departure from the series. Each story had its own moral and emphasized the values of hard work, determination, and the power of friendship. The first few seasons narrated by Baldwin were about on par, if a little mediocre at best, but nowhere as good as the original literature. The father and son stories will always be my favorites. Among those are 'James in a Mess'; 'Donald and Douglas'; 'James Learns a Lesson'; 'Old Iron' and 'Pop Goes the Diesel'.

    Each engine gets his/her own theme music, and this I absolutely love. Every once in a while, I catch myself humming James's proudly upbeat jive or the Scottish Twins' finger-tapping drum set. Some of the music, such as the sadly sweet harmonies elicited in 'Henry's Forest' and in just about any scene where someone is feeling the downs, may even draw a few tears. The live-action sets and model trains used for the series are wonderfully articulated and placed, making for such a realistic backdrop that you forget it's just a model train set-up.

    When it comes down to brass tacks, nothing compares to the Starr and Carlin years of this still beloved children's series. The animation, stories and narration may not be as well as it was 20 years ago, but Thomas, in any way, will always be top train around these parts. (Or in my case, James is.) So all aboard the nostalgia express! My Grade: Starr/Carlin – A+; Baldwin to present – C-
  • I've been a fan of Thomas all my life and i have to say that the older series is a lot better than the new one. i don't really like how hit entertainment change to cgi but after viewing it the animation was good. most of the episodes aren't that good anymore though. they use a lot of recycled plots and introduce characters we only see once. and hit didn't use characters that they had from previous seasons. i like to view before I give my opinions so ya if Your going to show your kid Thomas show the old episodes first. ill love Thomas for the rest of my life but i just hope hit does better writing in the future and they have with misty island rescue. i give the show an 8 out of 10
  • This is a great movie collection for children of all ages. I think that they were better with Ringo & George. These stories are wholesome and teach values to kids using stories about trains. I believe that the older videos (1984 to about 1997) are better than the newer ones because of the narrators, and they made everything PC. Before, Sir Topham Hatt was 'The Fat Controller', and they used funny phrases like 'impunent scalawags'. The newer videos & DVDs come with a toy version of one of the characters. Also, they are better quality, so they will last a lot longer than the original ones. If you can, purchase some of the older tapes.
  • I have been watching the DVD's (usually the best of, or one that highlights a character) with both of my boys, and I LOVE this series, I haven't seen any yet with Ringo Starr as the narrator, but I am sure those will be just as enjoyable when I do get the first season. Does any one know what size they are modeling the series at? As a Train enthusiast, they look 'O' gage to me, but not sure if they have a different system over there to determine train size. I would love to see them at some point run a contest to create a new character ya know a color, face, name type thing.

    And for those of you that got the season 1 DVD, How many episodes and what kind of bonus features came with it? I know I would like to see the sets they work with in terms of size alone because they must be HUGE!
  • I used to be a fan of this show growing up. It has since gotten ridiculous ever since Series 7 started. The episodes before it were good and and worth watching. But we should be glad that the original writer of the books never lived to see how horrible the series became. There were a lot of good episodes near the beginning, even some after they stopped using the books as a source. But I can't watch the series anymore without wondering why the writers behind it still have a job in the television industry. There was a least some since of realism to the show before it became CGI. Unfortunately, they have since ruined the show and my childhood would be dumb if I were raised on the series as it is made today. It still gets half my vote as a good TV show, but the other half has been ruined by what the show has become.
  • I can explain why Ringo Starr was the first narrator of this show:

    Back in the 1960s, The Beatles recorded the song called "Thomas the Tank Engine". The first opening theme tune of this show is based on this song. Therefore, producers of this show decided that Ringo Starr should be its narrator. And they made the opening theme tune of the show based on The Beatles' lost song. Unfortunately, The Beatles' version of "Thomas the Tank Engine" is nowhere to found. It was supposed to be released, but it was lost before its planned release. It was discovered in 1984 by producers of this show and they used this for the opening theme tune. However, it's unlikely that The Beatles' version of "Thomas the Tank Engine" will be ever released.

    And that's the reason why Ringo Starr was the first narrator of this show.
  • piggypro-7809012 August 2018
    I loved this show as a kid, and was one of my child hood favorites, and still is. however, after the 7th season ended in 2002, the franchise was bought out by a company named hit entertain ment, and the show took a serious nosedive in quality, the story's weren't as fun and memorable, and the show started looking emencly cheap. Eventually leading to the series being rebooted from using model trains that spew steam, to having the show be totally computer animated, it eventually turned into more slapstick and silly in 2018, and the show, yet again took a nosedive. With them cutting out two of the series veterans, the green #3 Henry, and the blue #2 Edward. But the first 6 to 7 seasons were filled with great story's, great and memorable characters, and amazing life lessons. I'd suggest, watching the first five seasons, and if you or your kid enjoys them, give them the 6th and 7th seasons.
  • The classic episodes of this incredibly popular and widely loved TV show will no doubt be remembered for always and always and always.

    They were full of life, loveliness, character... Beauty. Some of the shots were truly outstanding, and the models, the sets, the score- everything about the show was perfect. Then came HiT. I don't know what it is with them, they always seem to muck up perfectly good children's shows.

    Everything was great until the series became... Not animated, but the visual effects were semi-CGI looking, not easy to describe. Anyway, *hrumph*, when looking back, the show was great until they changed things. Made it more kid-appealing. My, my, some of the earlier episodes were scary, and thinking back, the Ringo Starr episodes were only rated U- but later ones received a Uc rating, aimed specifically for children. This is when it went downhill. They started using new intros, partial CGI, and worst of all, a new intro song with children who are unbearably bad at singing. After lowering it lower than ever, they essentially spat on the Rev. W. Awdry's grave by adding an awful, truly AWFUL rap-but- not-quite-a-rap that goes on for far too long. Really, I watched it, thinking, "Flippin' heck, ANOTHER verse?" Truly awful.

    Poor Michael Angelis, who, while narrating some of my favourite episodes, was dragged into this abysmally poor, modern, soulless production.

    So, as I said in my summary, it's a 9/10 from me. But only, I repeat with utter sincerity, ONLY for series 1-7. Maximum. Anything past that is utter rubbish. 6/10 for the rest, up until The Great Discovery, which, from then on, will receive a 2/10, and that's only for poor Angelis' sake. No heart, no beauty, no models. In a nutshell, HiT took the series, demolished the steel foundations, which were strong and sturdy, and replaced them with their own inflatable ones, and had the gut, the indecency to call it a show.

    And don't get me started on all the new, unimportant, crappy, worthless, useless, waste of space time, energy and breath that are the constantly-added new characters. Tell me, why do all of them sound mentally incapacitated? Even Gordon sounds like a retarded snob.
  • ONCE IN A WHILE a great, truly original bit of cinematic magic comes along. We can only imagine what life was like before the likes of Disney, the BATMAN TV Series(1966), JAWS, STAR WARS, Universal Horror Movies, Stan Laurel & Oliver Hardy, etc. Catching this lightning in a bottle certainly isn't an easy feat; nor is their any formula for success in this area. It's a matter of Hard Work and Dumb Luck!*

    WELL WE CERTAINLY move to have THOMAS AND HIS FRIENDS so disposed and nominate him for membership in this exclusive club of which we speak. All in Favour, say Aye; Opposed Nay! The Ayes have it! So be it directed and acclaimed throughout Cyberspace!

    AS YOU CAN plainly see, we have a soft spot for the import from the United Kingdom. This magical series, based on The Railway Stories by Reverend W. Awdry (1911-97), an Anglican Priest and devout Railroad buff. That all of the elements were present for an outstanding kid's series was apparent to writer/producer, Miss Britt Allcroft (1943-); who adapted the stories to computer animation TV.

    SHE MUST HAVE known her craft; for the series continues today after 30 years.

    IT IS ONLY recently that Thomas, Gordon, Emily and the other anthropomorphic characters really came to our notice. Along with Sir Topham Hat and others, they were very much below our radar, mainly because our own kids were just a little too old to have been into THOMAS; so he remained a pleasant looking fellow on video boxes in retail outlets and video rental emporiums, that is until......

    THAT IS UNTIL about the last year or we so; when our Grandsons, Jack and Patrick began devout following of the series on PBS and Cable Channel SPROUT. Well, we also became enamored with the show and continue to relish the opportunities to "have to view" it as an obligation; while doing baby sitting-duties. Just call it a perk of being a Grandparent!

    TWO WEEKS AGO, we had the "duty" of escorting the elder boy, Jack, to the Illinois Railway Museum in Union, Illinois. The occasion was a special event called A DAY OUT WITH THOMAS. Much like an outing to Disneyland, this day proved to be as much for the "Old Kids" as for the Youngsters.

    AND SPEAKING OF Mr. Disney, we're sure that if he could have, he would have done a THOMAS film. The series has all of the hallmarks of what would be a great Disney movie. It is innocent, non-pretentious, very gentle and action-filled. There are stories here that present us and the kids with perplexing problems and mysterious happenings; all of which require a concerted effort of the characters to both solve and resolve. In the process, a moral is imparted and a lesson learned. It's "educational" without being heavy handed or obvious.

    NOW TO US, that is truly "Disneyesque!" Don't you agree, Schultz?

    NOTE: * Some great man defines "Luck" as being where preparation meets opportunity, or something like that. It sure applies here!
  • I remember this as a little kid watching it for many years and adoring the great steam-engines and all of their pals. It's been so many years since I remember the time as child enjoying this t.v. series along with Shining Time Station. I would also play with many of the toys I've collected with my railroad tracks made of wood. In many ways, there are things we cherish as memories and thoughts to look back at our childhoods and always relive those moments in our heads as we relive our times of loving and caring for ourselves. I hope one day, my children will love him and cherish him to remember for many years. This series shall likely be beloved for generations and generations. Even if we've entered a new era of technology, sometimes old stuff is magical and amazing. I don't feel so critical towards timeless classics that we grew up with and I'm tolerant to those who just love whatever they connected with during their childhood. There are also good lessons to learn on this series from many engines including Thomas, Percy, James, Toby, and many more. This is a timeless classic for generations to enjoy.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends was a very good programme to watch when I was a kid. There was always a new adventure with the Number 1 blue tank engine train. I also loved the opening titles with that great music. Thomas with Annie and Clarabelle was a hard working engine who always did travel and work jobs for the Fat Controller. He also had some friends that he worked with and knew throughout the show. These characters had their own adventures as well. They include: Gordon, James, Percy, Harold the Helicopter and many others. Most episodes had one of the engines having an accident on the railway and another engine rescued them. I liked it so much when we went to a life railway in Alresford, with Thomas as a rail train. It was number 26 on The 100 Greatest Kids' TV Shows. Very good!
  • screenman21 November 2011
    Warning: Spoilers
    When I was a tot way back in the 1950's my mum used to get one or two of the 'Thomas The Tank Engine' books from the library each week. I was an ardent fan, even though I couldn't read.

    I recently watched an episode of 'Thomas The Tank Engine & Friends' on TV and was amazed at the quality of CGI presentation. Things really did look just as I remembered them in the books all those years ago.

    The narrator sounded like Ringo Starr, of all people, but he's not referenced here.

    But here's the rub. Thomas was involved in some kind of seasonal adventure regarding the delivery of a Christmas tree. And at the end we saw it decked with baubles and flashing fairy-lights, as the children stood about cheering. But the uber-politically-correct voice-over simply referred to a 'winter-holiday party'. What...???

    That'll be the BBC, steadfastly hell-bent on erasing any reference to Britain's Christian heritage. Thomas doesn't have Christmas any more. It's kind of ironic that they're happy to peddle these obsolescent stories about steam engines - something modern kids have probably never seen and can have no idea of the romance they once evoked - but an obsolescent religion? We can't have that!!

    The BBC make me sick. 'Winter-holiday party' - why do you suppose we have a winter-holiday party, you loonytunes? It's Christmas!

    And here's the irony: The story and characters were created by one Reverend Wilbert Awdry. No Christian connections there, then!
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