|This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the magazine story.|
- “Aye, Percy, and who knows, but he might come back to Sodor one day!"
"I hope so, Salty. I really do.”
- ―Salty and Percy referring to Gator
Missing Gator is the thirteenth episode of the eighteenth season.
Percy is usually cheerful and loves working with his friends, but lately he has been missing his new friend Gator. When Gator first arrived on the island, Percy thought he was a monster. However, he soon realised that Gator was an engine and the two became close friends. After a short while, Gator had to go away and Percy has missed him badly ever since. Salty tells Percy that Gator would not like to think of Percy sitting around moping all day and Cranky tells Percy to not think about him as he should make his work and the other engines his main priority. Percy decides that Cranky might be right and vows to stop thinking about Gator.
When Percy reaches Gordon's Hill, he cannot help but remember how Gator had made it seem so easy to pull heavy trucks to the summit. When Percy arrives back at Brendam Docks, Percy remembers Gator waiting there for his ship to come in. Percy remembers Gator's advice about being brave, but he is soon awoken from his daydream by Salty. Percy is puzzled as to how Salty knew he was thinking about Gator, then Cranky says that Percy has been sitting there for half-an-hour, still coupled to his trucks. Cranky tells Percy to keep busy, and to take his mind off Gator and Salty agrees that it is probably the best thing to do.
So, that is what Percy does. He works very hard indeed, but because he is trying so hard to concentrate on his work, he bumps into Stafford and ignores Thomas at Knapford. Percy explains to Thomas that he is trying not to think about Gator which obviously makes him think about his absent friend again.
A little while later, Percy is sent up to Ulfstead Castle to collect some troublesome trucks full of precious sculptures and paintings for a special exhibition. Percy buffers up to the trucks and rushes away. Millie thinks Percy should couple up to the trucks, but Percy says he is trying not to think about anything. Percy wishes he had listened to Millie when he reaches the slope leading down from the castle grounds. The trucks race ahead of Percy. All their giggling causes the points to switch and the trucks are led down towards Stephen's Mine. The entrance has only recently been reboarded up again, but the trucks soon break through into the mine.
Percy enters the mine and he does not like the look of it at all. Percy races back out again and begins to think for a moment. He thinks about Gator and his advice of how to be brave. Percy decides that he can go inside and get the trucks, after all. Percy travels deeper and deeper into the dark mine. As he rounds a corner, Percy spots some shadowy figures. It's the trucks who are very scared of being all alone in the dark. Percy is soon coupled up and pulls the trucks back out into daylight again. As he puffs away, Percy knows that he should have waited for the trucks to be coupled up and thinking about Gator had given him the courage to save the trucks.
Back at the docks, Salty spots Percy looking out to sea again. Salty tells Percy to stop thinking about Gator if it makes him sad. Percy explains that thinking of Gator makes him happy, too. Salty is pleased and says that Gator may come back to Sodor one day. Percy really hopes Salty is right.
- Henry (cameo)
- Emily (cameo)
- Stanley (cameo)
- Charlie (cameo)
- Porter (cameo)
- Annie and Clarabel (cameo)
- Big Mickey (cameo)
- The Bird Watcher (cameo)
- One of Dowager Hatt's Friends (cameo)
- A Schoolboy (cameo)
- Gordon (mentioned)
- Sir Robert Norramby (mentioned)
A woman's voice is heard over a station speaker. She is voiced by Miranda Raison in both narrations.
- Brendam Docks
- Sodor Shipping Company
- Gordon's Hill
- Knapford Yards
- Ulfstead Castle
- Ulfstead Mine
- Sodor China Clay Company (mentioned)
- Ben Small as Thomas and the Troublesome Trucks
- Keith Wickham as Percy, Salty and Stafford
- Clive Mantle as Gator
- Miranda Raison as Millie and The Knapford station speaker
- Matt Wilkinson as Cranky
- Martin Sherman as Thomas and Percy
- Clive Mantle as Gator
- Keith Wickham as Salty and Stafford
- Miranda Raison as Millie and the Knapford Station Speaker
- Glenn Wrage as Cranky
- Ben Small as the Troublesome Trucks
- Stock footage of Tale of the Brave is used in a flashback, as well as animation from King of the Railway.
- References to King of the Railway and Tale of the Brave are made in this episode, and it also foreshadows Long Lost Friend.
- Going by production order, this is the sixteenth episode of the eighteenth season.
- Clive Mantle joins the voice cast.
- This is the last episode to feature Ben Small as the Troublesome Trucks. Christopher Ragland later took over this role starting with The Adventure Begins. Kerry Shale, Rob Rackstraw, Lucy Montgomery and William Hope also took over the role starting with Journey Beyond Sodor.
- The episode's story seems to be loosely based on the game Thomas Saves the Day. As in the game's third episode, Percy looses some trucks in a mine.
- Due to reused animation from King of the Railway, the boarding blocking the mine entrance breaks before the trucks hit it.
- When the trucks run away down the hill, Percy's buffers are extended further forward than usual.
- When Percy arrives back at the docks, he is pulling a narrow gauge brake van.
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