Thomas The Tank Engine & Friends

Season 12 Episode 0

The Great Discovery

2
Aired Weekdays 3:30 PM Unknown on ITV
8.8
out of 10
User Rating
21 votes
4

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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The Great Discovery begins when an old town high in the mountains is discovered. Thomas is placed in charge of the town's restoration for the annual "Sodor Day" celebration. In order to get the important work done on the island, a new tank engine called Stanley is brought to the railway. Thomas is afraid that the new engine will steal his spotlight, so he tries to make Stanley look silly by playing a trick on him. The plan goes wrong, however, and when Thomas goes missing, The Fat Controller launches a search party all over Sodor. Thomas is found by Stanley, and the two become great friends.moreless
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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • when pirce says who told harold who neally flew of to find the fat controller at the first sentince you can hear him chuckle in this movie it was nealy time for the great westerns and the scottish twins and the bluebell engine to come backmoreless

    8.0
    i wonder why did michal angerlas let pirce brosnan narrate michal angerlas want to take a brake? i wonder why did the vocies take a brake and i wonder what do the vocies and narroter sound like when they take a breke and i know they sound the same i like pirrce's narraion but i cant wait till michal narrates the next season i got this on dvd and stock footage from edward and the mail and thomas and the light house and henrys lucky day are used and diesal 10 dennis roise molly terence gerorge the pack return the pack made their last appearnce in season 10 i cant wait till oliver duck toad and murdoch and donald and douglas to return at season 12 and they appear in gordan and the engernerr but duck toad and oliver and murdoch have diffeint vocies but donad and douglas have their same vocie because they are scootish arent they i love this movie cameo by bucth trevor terence bertie henriata but it is a shame byon nelson issabella did not appear in this movie and max and monty are not in their carlniss and it is a mix up movie i will tell you why it is a mix up movie becaues the narrow gauge engines main line engines and the pack too and thomas gets up to some trickey accendints like go on the rolling river bridge and fall of the tracks with his load and made stanley pull thoses trucks up the hill and the great wartertin bridge collapes this is the second time an engine made trucks crash in to towwers the first was season 8's calling all engines and they change the roll and coll and thomas went in to a mind and went down the hill and stanley and thomas are best friends now and thomas gets back to work at great wartertin now he was happy that stanley had come to sodor and this is the best movie i cant wait till stepney and toad to come back i cant wait for murdoch and nevile to come back and have speaking roles nice to see diesal 10 againmoreless
  • A great film featuring Thomas and all the crew for everyone to enjoy, regardless of age.

    10
    *POSSIBLE SPOILERS INCLUDED*

    "The Great Discovery" is Thomas' latest extended adventure, based on the best-selling "Railway Series" library and the hugely-successful television series. Making use of their new HD picture and 5.1 sound technology, HiT Entertainment partnered with Vue Cinemas for screenings of the film in the UK on the big screen. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend one of these screenings.



    Of course, the event was an instant sell out, and every seat was taken. Thousands of families had turned up, bringing their young ones to see Thomas. The lights went dim, and the film started, causing great excitement.



    The film has plenty of new things to introduce - the new location of Great Waterton town, plus a new steam engine friend Stanley, but also the first voiceover work for Irish actor Pierce Brosnan on the Thomas brand, who now has a "licence to chill" and a ticket to ride the rails. Pierce brings true enthusiasm to the famous role of the Storyteller, previously performed in the UK by Ringo Starr and Michael Angelis.



    This feature is simply perfect for Thomas the Tank Engine. Rather than a huge Hollywood-style film, it's more of an extended episode of the TV series. Many clever stunts are performed in the model animation style that the show has been filmed in since starting in 1984, and there is a good use of the hundreds of characters that have been on the show. Kids from behind were trying to spot all the new characters (I recall Rocky and Stanley for certain), plus all the old favourites that have been there from the beginning.

    There's plenty of excitement going on when Thomas plunges into a mine (has he not learnt his lesson by now?), exciting the kids as Thomas goes off on a huge adventure, and laughter from the older ones when Thomas finally emerges out of the mine in style!



    The new songs are also great to listen to, which include words to sing-along to on the bottom of the screen. The music video "Thomas You're The Leader" was the only thing that got the kids out of their seats throughout the whole film, their minds now focused on dancing!



    The story itself was one that is easy to relate to (new guy comes along and steals your spotlight), and can teach young ones about coping with jealousy, plus the end moral - "Stanley saved Thomas, and Thomas saved Stanley" - whilst watching blue trains fly over ravines.



    A great film that offers plenty for young ones, and the not-so-young ones. You'll watch this over and over and over again, so if you haven't got this, get it now.

    With the new CGI elements that have recently been added to the model animation on the new TV series, there's no limit to what the Thomas team can now do for its audience. Go on HiT - give us more!moreless
  • A feature-length special that actually feels special.

    8.0
    Sodor Day is coming to the Island, and everyone, including the engines, is working hard to hold a big celebration. One day, Thomas and James race to the Wharf as a special job awaits the winner. Thomas ultimately wins the race, and is told by the Thin Controller that the special is to collect lumber and take it back to the Wharf. Thomas is disappointed, especially as he has to work with Duncan, who delights in teasing bigger engines. At the Transfer Yards, Duncan shows Thomas a junction where the track ahead of him goes to the Wharf, which also leads to Rolling River Bridge along the way. Thomas puffs down the route, but when he tries to cross the bridge, it collapses completely, and Thomas backs away just in time. Thomas reverses to the junction, and takes the other track, which Thomas notices that it hadn't been used for a long time. Along the way, Thomas comes across an abandoned town, which makes him excited, and decides that he must tell someone about it. He comes across Madge the Snub-nosed Lorry, and tells her about his discovery, which makes her excited too. Soon, everyone on the Island hears the news about Thomas' discovery, including the Fat Controller. Thomas takes him to see it, and the Fat Controller tells him that it's the long lost town of Great Waterton. He later declares that it shall be restored and everyone must help, including the Sodor Construction Company. Thomas is to lead the operations, so the Fat Controller brings in an engine from the Mainland named Stanley to do Thomas' regular duties. The other engines take a liking towards Stanley, but Thomas get extremely jealous and cross at him for the fear that he will take his spotlight. The next day, Thomas tries to prove himself better than Stanley, but he has an accident, and the Fat Controller decides to put Stanley in Thomas' place as the leader of all restoration operations. This makes Thomas crosser still, so he plays a trick on Stanley. But this backfires, as a newly-built tower in Great Waterton collapses as a result. The Fat Controller tells the engines that this may cause the town of Great Waterton to not be completely restored in time for Sodor Day, which makes the other engines cross at Thomas. That night, Thomas decides to shunt trucks of rubble to prove himself useful again, but he soon gets himself lost in a mine after biffing one truck too hard into it. When the other engines figure out that he's missing, the Fat Controller orders a search party all over Sodor, but it ultimately fails. Stanley decides to search for Thomas himself, and along the way, realizes that Thomas might have ran away because of him. Stanley ultimately finds Thomas along an abandoned branch line after the blue engine crash-landed out of the mine, and the silver engine pulls Thomas back onto the rails, bursting a valve in the process. Thomas pushes him back to Great Waterton after getting steamed up, with the two becoming friends along the way. When some of the engines at the becoming-restored town see Thomas arriving, the news spread quickly all over the Island about Thomas being found. The town of Great Waterton is finally restored at long last, the Sodor Day celebrations go without any incidents, and Thomas and Stanley are glad to be friends.

    (OK, sorry for the very long summary) Well, the highly-anticipated feature-length special is finally here, and I enjoyed it greatly. The most notable aspect about this, to me, is a new narrator in the form of former James Bond actor, Pierce Brosnan. Despite the dialogue that is common of HIT Entertainment's "Thomas" episodes, Pierce puts all that he's got into his role as narrator, and I loved his voice speaking throughout the special. He has hints of Starr with being laid-back and using similar-sounding voices throughout that actually works, as well as Brandon with the amount of enthusiasm he brings out (though it gets a little overenthusiastic at times). Hopefully he will keep this up when he narrates season twelve and onwards.

    Another aspect that stands out is the amount of characters featured throughout the special. Though only a small portion of them speak, HIT managed to use as many characters as they could into a sixty-minute feature, including those who haven't been seen for a long while. This makes for more diversity that has been sorely missed for some time in the recent seasons, and will hopefully lead the way for a bigger use of secondary characters throughout the show's future. And as for Stanley, although I'm against new characters being introduced for reasons of filling a storyline, merchandising rights, or for the pure sake of it, at least there was a reason for him to come to Sodor. I liked how he had a big role in this special, as well as having his personality fleshed out, when he could've easily been overshadowed by the Steam Team.

    Now, onto the story. Well, despite it being common of HIT Entertainment's storylines, it can be forgiven here as this is a feature-length special. The story has more excitement than that of "Calling All Engines!", with a hint of Indiana Jones for good measure, and the lack of interactive interstitals makes the story run smoothly. And the songs, although not better than the classic O' Donnell and Campbell ones, were more catchy and tolerable than previous ones from HIT's era (especially the rap song at the end).

    One aspect that can't be forgiven however are the unrealistic scenarios. Though there was some realism put into the story, such as Thomas needing dry coal for his firebox, scenarios such as Thomas floating and the lack of drivers in major scenes just don't suit me. The dialogue also brings out some low points. I know "Thomas" is no longer suited for older-generation fans, but repeated lines and some rather childish dialogue make it seem (to me at least) that the writer(s) aren't challenging themselves nowadays when it comes to strong scriptwriting. And even though it was nice seeing the amount of characters used throughout, some of them could've had at least a couple lines of dialogue. Ah well, you can't have everything you want.

    All in all, I found the positive points of the special to outweigh the negative ones, and this is a major improvement over "Calling All Engines!". So much so in fact, that I actually threw out the CAE! DVD that I had (it was a waste of time and money anyways).

    One final aspect that I feel should be said is that the model makers really seemed to have fun making "The Great Discovery" from what the product shows. Keeping in mind that it's the last "Thomas" feature to use models completely (CGI faces being used for season twelve), it's no wonder why.



    I give this special an 8/10.moreless
  • Better than calling all engines!

    10
    I thought this movie was really good, the best thing HIT ever made! It begins with Thomas and James racing to the Wharf and Thomas beats James there, and the prize was that he got to pull logs, which he wish he did not get, and James got something to do with barges. And Duncan help leads Thomas into the mountains and shows him the track to bring the logs to the Wharf and Duncan leaves. But the bridge collapses and Thomas goes back onto another track, and discovers the lost town of Great Waterton! So he decides to spread the news and meets Madge while moving and tells her about the town and she helps everybody else spread the news and when Thomas makes his way back, everybody cheers because they are going to fix it in time for Sodor Day! But everything goes wrong when Thomas gets jealous of Stanley doing his jobs for him since he is in charge of restoring the old town.moreless

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