Thomas The Tank Engine This...

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by MCL_RDG, Jun 16, 2007.

  1. MCL_RDG

    MCL_RDG Member

    :eek:..and Thomas The Tank Engine THAT!!!

    It all started with 'Shining Time Station". I preffered that to the what I see today. I miss the characters- Hey if I'm waking up Sunday morning after a hard week at work- I don't need no fellow trying to get me to guess which carbarn Elsie's in. I need some train action- not the "let's pretend we're teaching little children" schtick.

    By the way, I thought Ringo Starr made a very good magical Station Agent. Alas, I show my age, I watched Shining Time from the start. (I think I musta been 42.)

    It's toot (get it:p) bad that they feel they have to "make" it "EDUCATIONAL". What's wrong with good, clean fun as entertainment as it started out- and still had a "values" point?

    How to kill a concept and make millions, all in the name of education.:confused:

    announce1That's my rant and I'm sticking to it. I don't wanna hear about, "How much it's contributing" to the hobby either. It's profits, not contributions. We'll see if those TTTE weebles continue with "their" hobby as they grow into tomorrows leaders. C-mon, Sir Topem Hat will be long gone by then.

    Look at what happenned to Bugs Bunny, Felix The Cat, The Monkees, not to mention The Little Rascals!:cry:


    Okay- let the controversy begin. If no one replies, that's okay, I'll just count you in with those who know what I'm talking about.:eek:

    BTW: There's 7110 listed members right now who know what I'm talking about.
  2. CRed

    CRed Member

    I enjoyed "Shining Time Station" and I thought George Carlin did a pretty good job as the conductor on the show also.

    Did you ever notice that the two best conductors were also "potheads"?sign1

  3. MCL_RDG

    MCL_RDG Member

    You're right...

    ..I could see his face but I couldn't think of the name. (*)


  4. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    Try :) :)

    I've been getting my "fix " there :) :) Tons of stuff.. i actually watched an entire episode of WKRP in Cincinatti :D :D

    A few Great Road-runner and Bugs cartoons too :)
  5. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    What were the seven words George Carlin couldn't say at Shining Time Station? :) I preferred Ringo myself!

    I didn't watch the show enough to pick up on any changes from entertainment to education but I always did admire the fine job they did on the scenary on the layout!

  6. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    I don't care who ya' are, that's funny right there.
  7. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    I remember them!!! :D :D :D But since our filter is the same as TV's filter it would look something like this:

    ****, ****, ****, ****, **********, ************, and ****
    and **** doesn't even belong on the list!! It sounds like a snack!!!
  8. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    When I first heard George Carlin was going to be on Thomas as Mr. Conductor I laughed just because my only association with him was his adult comedy. I had a hard time imagining the casting working out but I have to admit he did do a nice job and seemed to enjoy it. I'm sure there is a generation of kids who will look back on him as fondly as I do Captain Kangaroo...but the difference is I'll never come across video clips of The good captain doing a blue languaged comedy routine about dope! :)

    Oh, and for those who remember, Captain Kangaroo had a great train themed commercial for Kelloggs with a cereal bowl on a flat car stoping by a water tower to get milk!

  9. CRed

    CRed Member

    Captain that brings back memories!Gotta love those pre-cable days when you got up and watched the Captain,Sesame Street and the Electric Co. then spent the rest of the day actually playing outside instead of sitting on the couch and watching cartoons and playing on consoles all summer.I think Carlin was great on the show even though it would seem to be a bit of a misnomer having someone associated with lewd comedy and drugs on a childrens show.Of course Ringo wasn't exactly as pure as the white driven snow either.

  10. jambo101

    jambo101 Member

    I always enjoyed the theme song from Shining time Station,and i also liked Didi Conn.
  11. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    In defence of Thomas.

    OK, I've commented on this before here. The good things about Thomas is that the stories were written by an avid railway enthusiast (his son and grandson are also railway enthusiasts and have written other, "grown-up" books on heritage railways, steam trains, etc.).

    Rev. Awdry, the writer, would write stories based on real-life railway operations and events. Most of the stories in the TTTE books show the engines doing what trains do in real life. For example, you see them delivering mail, working in quarries, banking, waiting for signals, shunting, fixing derailments. You can -- as I've done -- actually learn a lot about how railways operate in real life from the Thomas stories! They're not just silly books about cartoon engines but are quite "prototypical". The personalities and faces were the main cartoon-like additions!

    Also, most (or all) of the engines are based on real life locos. I believe Thomas is based on an E2 "Jinty" that ran south of London.

    I'm referring to the original stories, though, as there have been a few more modern TV shows and books that have sadly departed from the original stories.

  12. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    ...A couple more quick comments. So the stories are both fun and educational at the same time (without it being obvious that they're educational about showing actual railway operations).

    I think that Shining Time Station is one of the modern TV versions of the show that departed somewhat from the original stories. I'm open to correction here, but it seems that STS is a more contemporary and American "re-working" of the original stories.

    If you can, try to get some copies or reprints of the original stories written in from the 1940s-1960s -- they're excellent! You can still buy reprints of the originals at book and toy stores.

  13. cwwees

    cwwees New Member

    First, I bought the "complete Thomas stories" book (hardback) with all the original stories and illustrations as written by Rev Awdry. I read them to my son and daughter enough to memorize several of them.

    Second, the HIT videos that were interspersed in Shining Time Station were exact narrations of the Awdry stories, where I've compared them. I only bought a couple for my children as I couldn't find them. HIT then brought out tapes with just the model trains and narration. In audio-only, Carlin narrates much better than Ringo Starr! And yes, those original videos maintain the exact narration of the Awdry story. A later set of books were brought out with the story intact, but the images from the video were used instead of the original illustrations.

    (For those who care, the original illustrations have faces on the engines. The engines always had names, but didn't get numbers until the fourth or fifth book that Awdry published.)

    Third, some amalgamation of PBS and HIT has introduced new stories that are not part of the Awdry series, seriously re-targeted to a younger audience, and have trappings of education draped around the stories. ("Which track will get Thomas to the coal chute?")

    Awdry reused most characters (engines) through lots of stories to develop the personality. Still, he had to keep adding engines (characters) with time. The new series introduces a whole new series of engines - presumably because it gives us more wooden model train engines to buy for our kids.<sigh>

  14. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    Thanks, Charlie -- that's interesting background. Personally, I like Ringo best as a narrator (partly because his English accent, which fits in with the stories) but I realize that things can sound quite different when it's audio only.

    I've also seen a few "serious" steam railway books by his son, Christopher Awdry. At some point, I wouldn't mind picking up 1-2 of these.

    Cheers, Rob
  15. CRed

    CRed Member

    Good post Charles,I agree 100% with you.The new shows are not very good if you ask me and the "educational" aspect of the show could only be considered "educational" to a preschooler.Even the new stories seem dumbed down a bit.

    I really thought George Carlin was a bit better narrator/conductor over Ringo,but either is way better then whomever is doing it now.Even Alec Baldwin was better if you ask me.Whenever I get a rush of nostolga I will watch the movie with my son,it would have been nice if Ringo or George had done it instead of Baldwin,but it's as close to Shining Time Station that I can get so I'll take it.

  16. CNWman

    CNWman CNW Fan

    Actualy, they've removed some engines from the series altogether, most noticeably engines #8-11 (Duck,Donald,Douglas, and Oliver). Plus some of the new engines are also noticeably female due to some complaint that there were to many male engines and that Thomas' coaches (who were female) showed female slaves doing forced labor under their male master (a bunch of baloney honestly).
  17. b28_82

    b28_82 Member

    I remember watching that when i was little and now I'm 25. Good old PBS entertainment. I'll have to go through some of the VHS tapes at my parents next time I'm home. I dont think i saw the last episodes and until someone mentioned George Carlin I didn't even know he was one of the conductors. Makes sense now that I'm older.
  18. ZeldaTheSwordsman

    ZeldaTheSwordsman Thomas Modeler

    They wanted George because he's good at controlling his voice. Oh, and Duck and the Scottish Twins have returned for season 12.
  19. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

    He's always got a place on my layout.:thumb:

  20. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    Man......I thought this was a new thread when I was reading it...Then I noticed the year it was first posted.
    I don't care what you all think of the show. Its popular with the kids, and thats should be the most important thing. When you have two 1:1 scale Thomases touring North America, with sold out seats, that means alot. Maybe its the cute face, or it could be the lessons the kids are learning, but it works. When I have three, sometimes four people at work coming up to me and asking when Thomas is coming..... do the math.

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