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Duck in the Water

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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the DVD or the magazine story.
"Honestly! I thought ducks liked being in the water!"
— James

Duck in the Water is the seventh episode of the eighteenth season.

Plot

One wet winter's day, Duck is at Knapford station with a goods train when James pulls in. James is pulling a passenger train and teases Duck for having to pull trucks. Duck knows that James sometimes has to pull trucks, too, but James says he should not have to; the passengers prefer to have a bright red engine such as himself pulling them.

As James is taking his passenger train along the line, thunder and lightning starts rumbling in the skies above and rain starts to pour down. James is not happy; how can people admire his splendid paintwork in this horrendous weather? The torrential downpour continues for quite some time.

Later, Harold is hovering above Duck's branch line when he suddenly spots a flooded piece of track. Harold hurries away to inform the Fat Controller, but it is too late. Duck puffs straight into the flood waters and is stuck.

At Knapford, James is having a rest before pulling another passenger train when the Fat Controller approaches him. The Fat Controller can see that James does not have a job so gives him the duty of fetching Rocky to lift Duck out of the flood. James is not very happy with his task, but the Fat Controller tells him that the sooner he does it, the sooner he can get back to pulling passengers. James races off, still not happy with his unsuitable job, but sometimes even splendid engines have to do a job they do not like.

Rocky has just finished lifting a brake van back onto the rails when James buffers up to him. James explains that they need to rescue Duck. Rocky is happy to help, but tells James to wait while his crane arm is secured. James does not listen to Rocky and races away. As they clatter along the rails, Rocky swings back and forth unable to control his unsecured crane arm. On the way, Rocky's hook hits several things including a scarecrow and a water-tower, but still James does not stop.

Meanwhile, Duck is sitting in the water, extremely bored and watches a family of ducks swim in front of his bufferbeam.

As James and Rocky near the flooded section of track, Rocky's flailing crane arm knocks over a signal which is set to caution. Rocky does not know what he has hit, but James is sure it cannot be very important. Duck is not happy in the cold water and his fire has gone out by the time James and Rocky arrive. Soon, Rocky is attached to Duck and is about to pull him out. James remarks that he thought "ducks liked being in the water" and laughs, but Duck ignores him and jokes to himself that Duck is not even his real name.

Meanwhile, Oliver is pulling a goods train along Duck's branch line, too. With the signal knocked over, Oliver is oblivious to the danger ahead. As Oliver rounds the bend, he has to brake hard but cannot avoid hitting James who knocks into Rocky. This causes Duck to be dropped back into the water. James is very cross and tells Oliver that he should have noticed the danger signal. Oliver is sure he did not see a signal and he starts to reverse so that his driver can put out some flags to warn other engines. Suddenly, Percy comes steaming round the bend and knocks into the engines. Duck finds himself, once again, back in the water. Harold has been watching the events and flies off to fetch the Fat Controller.

Eventually, Duck is placed back on dry rails. The Fat Controller arrives in Harold and he is not at all happy. Rocky says the whole situation must be his fault as his crane arm had not been secured and he must have knocked over the signal. James interrupts and tells the Fat Controller that it had all been an accident. He explains that he had collected Rocky and was in such a rush that he had not waited for Rocky's crane arm to be secured. As he is explaining, James realises that everything had been his fault. The Fat Controller is still not happy about all the chaos James has caused, but he is proud of James for admitting his guilt. The Fat Controller tells James to deliver Duck's goods train while Duck's firebox dries out. James is happy to do it.

As he sets off with the goods train, James realises that it does not matter what job he is doing. As long as the sun is shining, James is always a splendid-looking bright red engine.

Characters

Locations

Trivia

  • James' incident with the signal is similar to the one he had in the Railway Series story, Crossed Lines, from James and the Diesel Engines.
  • Duck's predicament is similar to the Railway Series story, Down the Drain, from Thomas and the Twins, in which Ben was stuck in a flood with his fire extinguished by the water and needed to be towed out.

Goofs

  • In the first shot of James arriving at Knapford, he goes past the platform, but in the next shot, he has moved backwards.
  • During the scene of James and Duck at Knapford station, Duck's footplate is clipping through the platform.
  • A young girl in a pink dress and a balding elderly man can be seen on platform one of Knapford station as James pulls off, but in the next scene, they are both in his train.
  • In the first shot of Knapford station, there are red coaches next to Duck as James arrives. However in the next shot, they are absent.
  • While exiting the tunnel, Rocky's crane arm passes through the wall for a moment when swinging.
  • Oliver's crew is not rendered properly when Oliver passes the broken signal, as they appear to be in his coal bunker, with one crew member's hand protruding through it.
  • When James arrives at the accident site, Duck has moved forward.
  • In one shot, Percy has moved positions.
  • Before the shot of Harold after the second crash, a man in front of Duck restarts his animation as the scene zooms out.
  • James' footplate is pink multiple times throughout the episode.
  • When Duck says "Hurry up! It's cold and wet in here," his brake van changes colour from grey to white.
  • In the first close-up of James, Duck's fourth truck and brake van are not rendered properly.

Merchandise

In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
Japanese みずにつかったダック Duck Soaks in the Water
Spanish Duck en el Agua Duck in the Water
Polish Kaczor w Wodzie Duck in the Water
Dutch Duck in het Water Duck in the Water
Hungarian Duck a vízben Duck's Water
Portuguese Duck dentro dágua Duck Into the Water
Romanian Rățioul Esta în Apă Duck in the Water
Russian Дак в воде Duck in the Water
French Duck dans le L'eau Duck in the Water
Czech Duck ve vodě Duck in the Water
Thai ดั๊กจมน้ำ Duck Drowning
Norwegian Anda ender i vannet Duck Ends in the Water
Danish Ducks dukkert Duck's Dip

Home Media Releases

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DVD Packs

AUS

  • The Christmas Engines

US

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China

Gallery

Episode

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