Specialized marionettes combined with terrific special effects and great voice acting equal a fantastic series such as this. Everything which puts CGI to shame.
For many years now, man has worked to perfect the material things in this world, and he's done pretty well for himself. If a building falls down, he can soon build it up again. With life, it's different. (Jeff Tracy, voice of Peter Dyneley; 01x22 Danger at Ocean Deep) This is the object of International Rescue, a secret organization run by retired billionaire Jeff Tracy, and his five brave sons; Scott, John, Virgil, Gordon and Alan, all of whom pilot the Thunderbird craft. We follow the various daring rescues made by the organization.
I will not lie, the works of Gerry Anderson were unknown to me for a long time. I only discovered his works in puppetry and beyond a year ago. As a kid however, I have vague memories of my dad having an episode ("Day of Disaster") on before I went to bed. I walked in on the disaster scene when the Martian Space Probe falls off the Allington Bridge. Being a fragile little twit, I was terrified by the puppets. I also think I have vauge memories of seeing some of the stupid FOX Kids redubs from the 90's.
Compared to today's effortless and redundant craze with CGI, "Thunderbirds" and by extent all other Supermarionation series are a rarity. What sets "Thunderbirds" apart from the others is the heartwarming plotline, the innovative special effects which would be used commonly in the future and all the iconic characters of the series. Those are certainly reasons I love the series.
The series has held up greatly for a series made in the 1960's and is still enjoyable to this day. While the series didn't have the unpredictable and particularly dark outcome that its successor series did, the fun was watching how International rescue pulled off their impossible rescues; no matter how much you knew they'd overcome in the end with heart warming results.