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Dirty Work, retitled Diesel's Devious Deed in American releases, is the thirteenth episode of the second season. It aired in the US on the Shining Time Station episodes, Word's Out in 1989 and Oh, What a Tangled Web in 1991.
Poor Devious Diesel, the newest engine on the Island of Sodor, is having a hard time having been made to look silly in front of the trucks, who delight in teasing him. Duck decides that Diesel has gone through enough and stops the trucks from their joking. Diesel is still furious and accuses Duck of making the trucks laugh at him. Gordon, James and Henry are nearby and tell Diesel that Duck would never do that. While engines may have fallen out, they would never tell the trucks about them.
By now, Diesel's dislike of Duck has grown to such a point that he wants him to be sent away and inspired by the engine's words about trucks, makes a plan, for he will tell lies about Duck. Going into the yard the next day, Diesel tells the trucks that he laughed at the jokes about him the day before and tells them some about the bigger engines and claims that he heard them from Duck. Before leaving he tells them not to tell the bigger engines He told them. The trucks find these jokes hilarious and laugh at the bigger engines, and tell them that they came from Duck in order to get revenge on him for forcing them to behave.
Gordon, James and Henry, believing that Duck was the one who told the silly stories about them, hold a meeting and agree that Duck needs to be paid back for teasing them. Later Duck returns to the shed after an extremely hard day's work. However, when he tries to get back inside for a rest, the bigger engines instead wheesh him. They tell him that, after telling tales about them to the trucks, they no longer trust him and want Diesel to replace him. Duck denies this and an argument begins. But it is not long until the Fat Controller arrives to see what the commotion is and is told of the bigger engines' accusation against Duck. The Fat Controller gives Duck a chance to explain himself and Duck tells the Fat Controller that his only wish at this point is that he had thought of those names himself. Diesel comes forward and when the Fat Controller asks him what he knows, Diesel feigns shock at Duck's actions, but claims ignorance otherwise.
The Fat Controller sends Duck to work with Edward at Wellsworth Station while he tries to get to the bottom of the incident. Thinking the Fat Controller has turned against him too, Duck obeys his orders and puffs away crying. Diesel smirks, happy with his victory.
- This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, Duck and the Diesel Engine.
- In the Welsh narration, the trucks singing Pop Goes the Diesel at the beginning of the episode is omitted from the narration.
- In the episode, Diesel is seen squirming while he is eavesdropping on the argument at the shed, but in a few photos from this episode, he is smirking instead.
- This marks the last time an engine cries in tears until the special, Day of the Diesels.
- In the Welsh version, when Duck apologises to Diesel about the trucks being rude to him, the music cue used when the narrator says, "Diesel lurked up" is used.
- The truck Duck bumps is being pulled by fishing wire.
- A pole is lying across the rails in front of Duck and Diesel in a shot.
- When Henry reminds Diesel, his coupling hook chain is upside down.
- The camera wobbles when James says "Disgusting!"
- The lines at the large yard with the trucks all lead to the brick wall in the background, so this means that the trucks are trapped there.
- When Diesel speaks to the trucks, none of them have faces; but when Diesel sniggers away they do.
- The lighting subtly changes between Gordon and Henry passing the trucks.
- When Duck turns on the turntable, the top of his face is falling off.
- When Gordon accuses Duck of calling him a "galloping sausage," he has marks on his right cheek and left side of his chin.
- In the close-ups of Gordon, James and Henry at Tidmouth Sheds, all three are missing their tenders.
- When Henry passes the trucks, he has a different whistle sound.
- Throughout the Brendam Warehouse scene, Diesel is missing his eyebrows.
- When the engines bar Duck from entering the shed, Gordon, Henry and James' eyes are wonky.
- When the narrator says "Duck was horrified," Gordon can be seen to Duck's left. However, in the following shot, Duck is steaming towards where Gordon, James and Henry are.
- In Ringo Starr's US narration, during the shed scenes, an odd hissing and squeaking sound can be heard. This is absent on the Better Late Than Never and Other Stories VHS however.
- When Henry says, "Nonsense! Duck would never do that!" part of his left (viewer's right) eyelid is chipped off.
- When the narrator says "Diesel squirmed and hoped he didn't," Diesel's face is crooked.
- When Gordon, Henry and James pass the trucks, Gordon's and Henry's tenders fade away.
- In the scene after Gordon, Henry and James passing the trucks, the truck next to the two laughing trucks is gone.
- When James says "Keep out!" his face is off-centre from his smoke box.
- Henry's eyes are wonky when he is on the turntable.
- When the trucks laugh and the narrator says "'Ha ha ha ha!' guffawed the trucks!" the van furthest to the right of the screen has a crooked face.
- In the Welsh version, at the shed scene, Ringo Starr's voice can be faintly heard.
- Henry passes the trucks before James does, but when Henry is on the turntable, James has already made it into his shed.
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