“The day finds me with
much too much to do, Hiro!”
HIRO & THE FAT CONTROLLER
Hiro Helps Out
era of the models had ended in 2008, and for reasons of economy, Thomas and Friends relaunched in stunning new CGI animation
provided by Nitrogen Studios of Canada in 2009.Nitrogen had previously provided
the CGI elements used in Series 12, and were now tasked with the opportunity to recreate the Island of Sodor in a completely
was the second new beginning that Thomas had undergone while under HIT Entertainment ownership – the previous one had
seen a cast restructure, new theme music, film format and running time.Similarly,
Series 13 brought about a cast restructure again with a limited number of characters and locations being recreated in CGI
for the first new series, and extended the running length from seven minutes to nearer nine.Not only this – but for the first time, voice actors for both the British and United States territories were
brought in to accompany Michael Angelis and Michael Brandon.
series also takes steps toward following continuity again – acknowledging the events of Hero of the Rails throughout
at different instances, and by bringing Hiro back to Sodor again toward the end of the series.
However, while the animation was appealing and true to the model format, the storylines were not
felt to be as strong as they had been previously in Series 12 or before.This
could well be attributed to the number of new writers in Sharon Miller’s writing team and the nature of the changeover.
The series is also notable for being the first not to have specially shot footage for the Music
Videos, this time with new material created by Robert Hartshorne as opposed to Ed Welch. Again, this could be owed to
time constraints placed upon Nitrogen Studios to produce Series 13 in good time whilst also preparing the models and CGI sets.
Charlie the ‘Fun’ Engine
Hiro the ‘Master
of the Railway’
Victor the Steamworks Engine
Kevin the Crane
Thomas You're The Leader (Re-Edit)
Michael Angelis (UK)
Michael Brandon (USA)
CHARACTER VOICES (UK)
CHARACTER VOICES (USA)
JULES DE JONGH
CHARACTER VOICES (UK & USA)
JULES DE JONGH
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS Christopher Skala
MUSICAL COMPOSITIONS & SONGS
2014, we ran a poll on Series 13 to determine what the best episodes
of the Series were as well as what else fans enjoyed about it.Best characters,
episodes, and aspects of
production are included and broken down in our poll results blog!Whilst Hero
of the Rails ushered in the new
era of CGI animation, Series 13 became the first fully animated series of
Thomas & Friends – click the link to see what SiFansite visitors thought of
Teaser clips from: Creaky Cranky, Slippy Sodor, Thomas
& The Pigs, Splish Splash Splosh, Snow Tracks, Double Trouble and Tickled Pink
13.1 - Creaky Cranky
by Sharon Miller
Duke and Duchess of Boxford are holding a special party at the Summer House for the children’s spring holiday.Thomas, James and Henry are making deliveries to the party, and Cranky is loading
the flatbed trucks for them.When Cranky lowers his load, Thomas laughs at him
and calls him ‘Creaky Cranky’ – Cranky isn’t pleased, so retorts to Thomas by calling him ‘Tiny
Thomas’, and suggests that he can’t pull heavy loads.
then challenges Cranky to a contest of strength.So he collects Henry’s
flatbed of straw and James’s flatbed of wood – both of which Cranky lifts with ease.Then, Thomas suggests something a little heavier to lift – himself!Cranky accepts the challenge and lifts Thomas – but doesn’t reckon with Thomas’s weight.Cranky’s cables snap and he’s left looking crooked, with Thomas dangling in mid air!The Fat Controller finds them both in their awkward position and scolds them.
is lowered back to the rails, but he’s now late for the party delivery.Luckily,
Spencer is there, so he takes the load instead, while Thomas goes off to collect parts to mend Cranky.
is impressed with the heavy load that Thomas brings to the Docks, and tells Thomas he’s not ‘Tiny Thomas’
at all... and Thomas agrees that he’s no longer ‘Creaky Cranky’ either!
13.2 - The Lion Of Sodor
by Mark Robertson
Thomas is given the job of delivering a crate containing The Lion Of Sodor to Knapford Station.
is determined to do a good job and look after the lion, but what he doesn’t realise is that the Lion of Sodor is actually
a statue.So when Thomas meets Henry, Edward and Toby – he asks them to
provide some fish, treacle and straw for the Lion to make him feel comfortable.It’s
only when Thomas reveals to them that it’s actually The Lion of Sodor that the three engines realise their mistake and
try to tell Thomas – but before they can, he’s already shot off again.
the time Thomas reaches Knapford, the Lion of Sodor statue is in a dreadful mess, covered in straw, fish and treacle and in
need of a good clean.Henry and the Fat Controller explain the situation to Thomas
– who didn’t realise it wasn’t a real lion inside the crate.Thomas
then takes it upon himself to get the Lion ready again for the Mayor’s arrival at tea-time.After listening to Henry, he takes it for a washdown; after listening to Edward, it’s polished bright
again at the Steamworks – and thanks to Toby, Thomas takes the quickest route back to Knapford to met the Mayor and
the Fat Controller.
13.3 - Tickled Pink
Written by Alan Plenderleith
is sent for a repaint at the Steamworks.However halfway through it, the Fat
Controller needs him to pick up his Granddaughter for her birthday party as all the other engines are busy.This makes James feel uncomfortable as he’s wearing a bright pink undercoat, and he knows that the
other engines will tease him.After he meets Emily at a junction, James tries
to reach Maithwaite without being laughed at again.He tries hiding behind trucks
at the shunting yards to avoid Diesel, and behind long branches to avoid Toby – but it’s not long before he’s
caught out by Gordon, Thomas and Percy when he’s hiding in a tunnel... and running late to pick up the Fat Controller’s
granddaughter.Determined to do a good job, James ventures over to Maithwaite
and prepares to have the children laugh at him too – but he soon finds he’s made the little girls’ day as
James is painted in their favourite colour!And for James – that makes
everything all the more worthwhile...!
13.4 - Double Trouble
by Sharon Miller
is due to take the Fat Controller and Lady Hatt to the Fat Controller’s birthday party – but when he arrives at
Maithwaite station, he’s surprised to find that the Fat Controller has grown a moustache seemingly overnight, and somehow,
developed some new personality traits.Thomas wants to ask what’s going
on, but doesn’t want to look silly, so doesn’t bother.On the way
to the party they stop at the Whispering Woods where Edward is waiting with the children.The Fat Controller climbs down to play with them and is gone for a very long time, making Thomas and Edward concerned
about time-keeping for the party.In spite of their protests, the Fat Controller
is unbothered.When they stop at a junction, the Fat Controller then leaves to
visit the Signal Box, and while up there, messes with the levers to send Gordon down a Branch Line away from the party venue!Thomas then heads back to Maithwaite, where the Station Master informs him that the
Fat Controller and Lady Hatt have had to go to the party in Bertie the Bus.Confused,
he plucks up courage and asks the Fat Controller what is going on – only to discover it’s not the Fat Controller
at all, it’s his brother, Loham Hatt!They soon catch up with the real
Fat Controller and Lady Hatt when they discover Bertie has broken down, and deliver all three of them to the party just in
time.Thomas then sets about fixing all the confusion and delay that Loham Hatt
has caused, and gets Gordon and Edward back on track again and on their way with the children and party guests to the main
13.5 - Slippy Sodor
Written by Mark Robertson
has a cracked funnel – so he has to get a new one from the Steamworks.After
several attempts to find the right one, Victor and Kevin have to settle for a brightly coloured funny funnel, which Thomas
will have to wear until the old one is mended.Thomas is asked to take the special
Bubble Liquid from Brendam Docks to Knapford Station for Mr Bubbles the Clown, who is performing a show there.Thomas is asked to puff slowly and carefully with the load to make sure that none of it spills.However, the other engines laugh at Thomas’s funny funnel, and he’s keen to get away from them
as quickly as he can.Thomas ends up going too quickly and spills the bubble
liquid all over the road – causing the Fat Controller to crash his car and end up in a terrible mess.By the time Thomas reaches Knapford, the bubble liquid is gone and the Fat Controller and Mr Bubbles are
most upset.Thomas promises to make it up to them and goes back to Brendam to
pick up more bubble liquid – but this time, he ignores the other engines when they laugh at his ‘funny funnel’,
and when he sees that the ‘funny funnel’ makes the children laugh and feel happy – it makes Thomas happy
too.As a reward for being really useful, Thomas is invited to stay at Mr Bubbles’
13.6 - Early Bird
Written by David Richard Fox
is ill and Thomas has to deliver the mail for him in the morning.However, Thomas
doesn’t know how Percy does it and doesn’t feel he needs to ask.As
a result on his first morning his whistling wakes up Mavis at the Quarry, Cranky at the Docks and Victor and Kevin at the
Steamworks.By the end of his shift, Thomas notices that Mavis and Cranky have
made silly mistakes – and he soon finds out why when the Fat Controller scolds him for whistling loudly in the early
morning while everyone is still asleep.Thomas then decides to ask Percy what
to do, and the following morning, Thomas does the job perfectly – and at the end of his run, Thomas has fallen fast
asleep at the Steamworks!
13.7 - Playtime
by Sharon Miller
is supposed to take Alicia Botti to a special concert at the Town Hall.On the
way, Percy tells him about Charlie the new engine – who is said to be the most fun engine ever... even more fun than
Thomas.When Thomas meets Charlie, he is determined not to lose face and accompanies
Charlie on his jobs instead of taking Alicia Botti to the concert.Every time
Thomas tries to go, Charlie persuades him to carry on having fun, until Thomas ends up leaving Annie and Clarabel behind when
their couplings break free.It’s a mad dash for Thomas to find them again,
and even though Charlie wants to turn it into a game to decide the most fun engine ever, Thomas isn’t playing.Like a really useful engine, Thomas finds Annie, Clarabel and Alicia Botti, and gets
them to the concert in good time.
13.8 - Thomas and The Pigs
by Allan Plenderleith
loves visiting Farmer Trotter’s pig farm.And when one of Farmer Trotter’s
pigs is due to have piglets, he asks Thomas to collect some soft straw from Farmer McColl for them to lie on.On his way to collect some, Thomas wonders what else the piglets might like – and asks Percy, James
and the children to give him some milk, apples and chestnuts to take to them.But
when he arrives at Farmer McColl’s, Thomas has overloaded the flatbed and there’s no room for the straw!
Farmer McColl nor Farmer Trotter are happy and ask Thomas to unload the flatbed and fetch the straw quickly.Thomas arrives back just in time with the soft straw, and sees what a difference it is making to the newborn
piglets.Farmer Trotter is so pleased that he even names one of the piglets after
13.9 - Time For A Story
Written by Miranda Larson
new library is due to open at the Town Hall, and Thomas is asked to take the new books there for the children.When Thomas arrives at Maithwaite Station, he’s very keen to get to get away with the books for the
storytelling.He leaves without letting the Station Master cover the books up,
and determinedly hurries to the Town Hall.Thomas isn’t keen to stop for
anything – even signals at the junction, so he decides to go down the Branch Line route instead, even though it’s
under repair and very bumpy!
bumps in the track and Thomas’s speed cause the trucks to fly in the air and land in Farmer McColl’s field, scattering
the books everywhere!Thomas feels ashamed – then he sees how nice the
books look in the afternoon sunshine and wishes the children could see them...
gives Thomas a splendid idea and he hurries off to collect them in Annie and Clarabel.Thomas tells the children and their teacher that they’re off for a ‘Special Picnic Storytime’ in
13.10 - Percy's Parcel
by Robyn Chateris
sees how disappointed Percy is when the Fat Controller doesn’t give him a special.She does her best to reassure him, and tells him that when the Fat Controller does give him one, he’s to tell
her all about it.Much to Percy’s surprise, the Fat Controller sends him
to collect a special parcel from the Docks to be taken to Knapford in time for his mother’s Birthday Party.Percy is very excited and keen to show Mavis – so he hurries off straight to the Quarry.But Mavis is busy preparing trucks with Rocky... who drops one of his slate slabs by accident and causes
a big dust-up, which covers the parcel!
decides to go and get himself and the parcel clean at the Washdown.But the soapy
water only causes the parcel to sag!He then takes it to the Steamworks to be
dried, but that does no good either.Percy feels very ashamed – he’s
let the Fat Controller and his mother down.Then he overhears Mavis and Edward
chatting about new crates that Victor has had delivered to the Steamworks, and it gives him an idea.Percy asks Victor if he can have one to carry Dowager Hatt’s present to Knapford in time for the
party.Percy arrives just in time, and the crate is opened to reveal a beautiful
new picture of Dowager Hatt.Percy is pleased, and Mavis is very proud of him
for getting the job done.
13.11 - Toby's New Whistle
Written by Louise Kramskoy
bell isn’t working, and Victor has no spare bells at the Steamworks. Instead,
Toby has to make use of a 3-chime steam whistle. James tells him is very loud
and booming, which Toby is worried about using the whistle, he doesn’t like loud noises.This makes work very difficult when Toby is sent to collect Lady Hatt from Knapford and some stray cows are blocking
the line – Toby can’t shift them.He tries reversing to look for
help, but there’s nothing forthcoming, so he has to go back and shift them himself.
there’s trouble – Thomas is heading down the line unaware of the problems ahead.Toby summons the courage to blast the whistle to warn him in time – and impresses Emily and Percy with the noise
it makes!Thomas is grateful, and once the two engines clear the line, they head
for Knapford together to collect Lady Hatt... only to find the Fat Controller waiting for them and looking very cross because
Toby is late and Gordon has had to take Lady Hatt instead.But when a fallen
tree is blocking Gordon’s path – Toby has to use the steam whistle again to warn him... and saves him and Lady
Hatt from collision.
hearing how brave Toby was, Victor is keen to let him keep the old steam whistle – but Toby insists he’s far happier
with his old bell again!
13.12 - A Blooming Mess
Written by Miranda Larson
station is being decorated, and Emily is thrilled to be bringing flowers from Maithwaite.But on the way there from Tidmouth, she calls to Mavis on the bridge and receives no reply.Emily assumes that Mavis is sad and decides to decorate the Quarry with flowers to make Mavis happy again.
she leaves the trucks of flowers in such awkward places that Edward and Thomas can’t help running into them and causing
a terrible mess. Mavis arrives back to find the flowers, engines and trucks in
disarray and is most annoyed.Emily explains that she was concerned for Mavis,
but Mavis insists that she was just busy thinking about her day’s work.Emily
now realises that she should have asked Mavis – and when she does, she finds that Mavis wants a tidy quarry with useful
sets about putting everything right, and then heads to Knapford to help with the decorating.And when Mavis sees the beautiful flowers where they should be, Emily can
see how happy they’ve made her friend.
13.13 - Thomas & The Runaway Kite
by Louise Kramskoy
Sodor Kite Festival is coming, and Thomas is collecting the winner’s cup to take to Knapford.On the way, he and Charlie see the Fat Controller’s grandchildren playing with their kite on Gordon’s
Hill – but a big gust of wind blows it up and away from them.Thomas promises
to get it back for them and gives chase – but turns down help from Charlie, Edward, Emily and Percy as he tries to get
Thomas burns all of his coal in the attempt and is left stranded until Charlie comes along.This time, Thomas knows he needs help and asks Charlie to look for the kite.After getting some fresh coal from Charlie, Thomas heads on to Knapford with the cup – and on the way meets Emily,
Percy and Edward, who he asks to help too.Together, all five engines soon track
the kite down and get it back to the children in time for the Kite Festival.
13.14 - Steamy Sodor
Written by Sharon Miller
of the narrow gauge engines is ill, so Victor has to go to the Transfer Yards to see him.The Fat Controller leaves Thomas in charge of the Sodor Steamworks in his absence.Victor tells Thomas to listen to the problems of each engine and if he needs help – ask Kevin the Crane.
when the engines arrive at the Steamworks, Thomas gets things in a terrible muddle.Spencer needs new paint – but Thomas insists upon a mechanical check; Henry needs cleaned out – Thomas
suggests special coal and when James’ funnel is stuffed with twigs and straw, Thomas suggests a new one.The situation puts poor Kevin in a spin and he runs aimlessly around the Steamworks spilling coal, hitting
a button to hoist Spencer and bashes into James, who is so cross that he blows the twigs and straw out of his funnel and covers
the Steamworks... and Victor in soot!
Thomas realises he hasn’t listened and decides to put everything right with Victor’s help.Together, they evaluate each problem and get the engines the help they need –
new paint for Spencer, a firebox clean for Henry and a good polish and clean for James.
13.15 - Splish, Splash, Splosh!
Written by Sharon Miller
a wet day on the Island of Sodor, and Thomas and Rosie have done a hard day’s work in the shunting yards. As they are heading back to Tidmouth sheds to rest, they have splendid fun running through muddy puddles
and create a game called ‘Splish, Splash, Splosh!’
they’re playing, the Fat Controller stops them and asks Thomas to collect Alicia Botti from Dryaw Station once he’s
had a washdown.However, on the way to the Washdown, Thomas finds more and more
puddles to play in – and splashes Charlie, James and Emily, thinking they’d like his new game.While Charlie appreciates being part of the fun – James and Emily end up having their special loads
of flour and strawberries ruined on the way to the bakery!
finally comes a cropper when he splashes through a puddle that soaks the Fat Controller and Miss Botti – and ends up
putting his fire out!In the end, Thomas decides to put everything right with
Rosie’s help.He asks her to take the Fat Controller and Miss Botti to
the concert, and takes over James and Emily’s delivery of cakes from the bakery.After the day’s events, Thomas is a little more careful when he’s playing ‘Splish, Splash, Splosh!’
13.16 - The Biggest Present Of All
by Sharon Miller
Master of the Railway, Hiro, has returned for the summer and the Fat Controller is holding a special party to celebrate, and
he asks Thomas to tell all the engines.But Thomas becomes sidetracked and begins
to wonder what he could get Hiro as a special present to welcome him back.He
considers a barn, Sodor slate and a bell from the Steamworks, but none seem right.But
while he’s puffing around the Island telling everyone that Hiro is back, he forgets to tell them about the party!
he sees Hiro at Knapford on his own, Thomas hurries away to put things right and tells Emily, James, Henry, Mavis, Toby, Victor
and Kevin all about the party.
feels sad that he hasn’t found a present for Hiro, but the big engine insists that he has received the greatest present
of all... having his friends with him to welcome him back to Sodor again at such a wonderful party.
13.17 - Snow Tracks
by Alan Hescott
blankets of snow have covered the Island of Sodor – and Gordon is asked to shift trucks of coal to Brendam Docks.The Fat Controller asks Gordon to take the long way around to avoid accidents in the
difficult weather, but Gordon believes he is superior by far and decides not to heed the Fat Controller’s advice.
encountering moments of wheel-slip on steep hills, Gordon ploughs on.Even running
into dirty slate trucks does not put him off – but when his snowplough ends up creating a giant snowball on Gordon’s
Hill, which chases both him and Thomas back down the hill – he realises how silly he’s been.The snowball derails Thomas and Gordon has to fetch Rocky to help free him.To show he’s sorry, Gordon helps Thomas finish delivering his firewood to the stations, and when they return
home that night Gordon tells his friends that “No engine is special, but all
engines are best!”
13.18 - Henry's Good Deeds
Written by Alan Hescott
special bird called the ‘Sodor Warbler’ has returned to the Island, and Henry is charged with the responsibility
of taking a special nesting pole to Bluff’s Cove, in the hope that the bird will nest on the Island again.
of bird-watchers have arrived and Thomas is taking them on a special tour.When
Henry sees Thomas letting Farmer McColl cross with his cows, he’s encouraged to see Farmer McColl complimenting Thomas
for helping him – and calling it a good deed.Henry decides he’d
like to do good deeds too.So when he meets Farmer Trotter’s pigs at a
crossing, he lets them cross over the line and into a muddy pool – which upsets Farmer Trotter who wanted clean pigs
to go to market with.Worse still, when Henry reverses to let the pigs pass,
he frightens them and they upset some apple crates and block the line for Thomas and the bird-watchers.
To save time, Henry offers to take them to find the Sodor Warbler, but when they reach the field where the bird
has been sighted – Henry blasts his whistle and frightens the bird away.Henry
feels bad, he’s late for delivering the nesting pole, and he’s not done any good deeds.But he makes up for it when he gives a small bird a ride to Bluff’s Cove where the bird-watchers
cheer for Henry – he’s brought the Sodor Warbler!And as the bird
settles down to sleep – choosing to make Sodor its home once more, Thomas and Henry welcome their new friend home again.
13.19 - Buzzy Bees
Written by Sharon Miller
Thomas has to take beehives to Farmer Trotter, Hiro advises him that the best route to take would be through the shady forest.Thomas decides to go via a field filled with colourful flowers – which sends
the bees into frenzy.Thomas tries to get them to come back, but it’s no
use.So he tries using some of Farmer McColl’s flowers to lure them back
to the hives – but the bees won’t go back to the hives.Thomas tries
running from the bees, but all they do is chase after him.He leaves the truck
of flowers in a siding and then hurries away.
soon meets with Hiro, who was supposed to collect the missing flowers.Hiro tells
Thomas that Farmer Trotter is worried about his bees being late, and Thomas feels very ashamed.He decides to go and put everything right at once – collecting both flatbeds of flowers and beehives
and going through the forest, which makes the bees cold and keen to return to their hives.
drops the hives at Farmer Trotter’s and then meets with Hiro again at Farmer McColl’s farm.While Thomas is sorry that Hiro will now be late with his delivery of flowers, he assures him that because
of them, Farmer Trotter will now have the best honey on the Island.
13.20 - Hiro Helps Out
by Sharon Miller
notices how much of a frustrated muddle the Fat Controller is in and is keen to help.When Edward isn’t sure where to take his passengers from Brendam Docks, Hiro advises the hills.When Thomas isn’t sure where to take tables and benches, Hiro advises he waits until the Fat Controller
isn’t as busy to ask – and tells Thomas to go to Farmer Trotter’s to unwind.He later meets Percy who is unsure where to take ducks and wants to ask the Fat Controller also – but Hiro suggests
Fat Controller soon finds Hiro and is very annoyed that the engines and their loads aren’t where they should be.Hiro now feels like ‘The Master of the Muddle’, and promises to put everything
right at once.The Fat Controller issues the engines with their right orders
and sends them on their way.
when Hiro asks what he should do, the Fat Controller tells him that he will be
helpful – by helping him!