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Percy Takes the Plunge

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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the Buzz Book, the UK DVD, the US DVD, or the Philippine DVD.
"Well, it wasn't anything, really. Water's nothing to an engine with determination!"
— Percy
PercyTakesthePlunge19
Percy Takes the Plunge
Director(s)

David Mitton

Producer(s)

David Mitton
Robert D. Cardona

Writer(s)

Reverend W. Awdry
(original)
Britt Allcroft
David Mitton
(adapted)

Narrator

Ringo Starr (UK/US)
George Carlin (US)

Air date

November 13th,
1986 (UK)
May 2nd,
1988 (Australia)
May 28th,
1989 (US)
May 4th,
1993 (George
Carlin US
)

Previous episode

The Runaway

Next episode

Pop Goes the Diesel

Percy Takes the Plunge, sometimes known as Percy Takes a Plunge in the US is the eleventh episode of the second season. It aired in the US on the Shining Time Station episodes, Mapping it Out and Schemer Goes Camping.

Plot

One day at the harbour, a tired Henry is looking to rest in the sheds after a hard day's work, but instead of peace he finds Percy telling Bill and Ben about the time he braved bad weather to help Thomas's passengers return home. However, Percy is embellishing the tale, as he speaks about how he braved through flood waters using the phrase "Water's nothing to an engine with determination". Bill and Ben shower Percy with praise and Henry angrily tells them to leave, as the sheds are only for engines belonging to the Fat Controller.

The engines leave and Percy is angry. He had been enjoying himself. However, Henry just tells Percy how silly his line about water and determination is. Percy leaves, but not without quickly reminding Henry of when he refused to leave a tunnel because of rain.

Later, Percy and Thomas come across a board reading "DANGER Engines must not pass this board". Thomas tells Percy that they must not go past it and tells him about the time he passed a board and fell down a mine. Percy cannot see a mine, not realising that the foundations of the rails have sunk and the line now leads into the sea. As a result, Percy, who is now feeling very cocky, decides that the board is stupid and makes a plan to pass it.

As he brings some trucks to the harbour, Percy asks them to bump him when they arrive at the quay. The trucks happily agree, having never been asked to bump an engine before. Percy's plan is to pretend to stop at the quay and then have the trucks bump him past the board after which he can make them stop. However, Percy, in his foolishness, has forgotten that trucks cannot be trusted.

At the quay, the trucks bump Percy hard enough that both his driver and fireman fall off the footplate and push him past the board. Percy quickly realises his mistake and tells the trucks to stop, but there is no chance of that and they happily push Percy into the sea.

Later, as Percy sits in the water, the Fat Controller scolds the tank engine for his naughtiness. Percy begs to get out, but the Fat Controller explains that they must wait until high tide and hopes that this will teach Percy a lesson. By the time the cranes can be brought to rescue Percy, it is night. Working hard, the cranes pull a cold, weak, and filthy Percy from the sea.

The next morning, Percy is taken to the works to be cleaned and mended by Henry, who finds the incident very amusing after Percy's earlier boasts. When Percy states he did not like the water, Henry replies he needs more determination and that perhaps he will like it better next time. Percy, however, hopes there is no "next time".

Characters

Locations

Trivia

  • This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, The Eight Famous Engines.
  • In the restored version, Bill and Ben leave the shed a few seconds earlier.
  • The first season episodes, The Sad Story of Henry and Down the Mine are referenced.
  • The "DANGER" sign is re-used from Down the Mine.
  • A picture from this episode's Buzz Book adaptation shows a deleted scene in which Percy is with Thomas after being rescued from the sea.
  • In the scene with Thomas and Percy at the harbour, a truck with the letter "M" on it can be seen.
  • A barge has "Terrey" written on it; possibly a reference to crew member Terence Permane.
  • Ringo Starr's US narration was not released on home media until 2001 when it was included on Best of Percy.
  • In a rare picture, Percy is shown covered in mud and wearing a sad face while he is at the quay with Thomas.

Goofs

  • Percy's story is about the events of Percy's Promise, which wasn't televised until the third season.
  • The narrator says Percy ran off to the harbour singing, but he was already at the harbour.
  • When the camera is panning down on Thomas, several trucks in the background are derailed.
  • Before Percy takes the plunge, there is a shot of him already on the quayside, but in the next scene, he slides past the board.
  • In the restored version, Bill and Ben's whistles and chuffing sounds are still heard after they leave.
  • Percy is smiling when he slides past the board.
  • When Percy pulls up next to Thomas, two trucks behind them are derailed.
  • Just as Percy plunges into the sea, two of his trucks become derailed.
  • The narrator says that Percy could not see that the track led to the water when it is very clear.
  • Diesel makes a cameo, but he wasn't introduced until the next episode. Bill and Ben also appear, but they aren't introduced until The Diseasel.
  • When Percy is lifted out of the water, a workman has blu-tak on his neck.
  • When Henry enters the shed, his tender bounces.
  • During Percy's trip to the harbour, his brakevan changes.
  • During the episode, Percy's left (viewer's right) cylinder is loose.
  • Ben's nameplate is peeling off when Henry puffs in.

Merchandise

In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
Japanese うみにおちたパーシー Percy Falls into the Sea
Finnish Percy Plops
Danish Percy Falls In
Dutch Percy Plunges In
German Percy nimmt ein Bad Percy Takes a Bath
Norwegian Percy går i vannet Percy Goes into the Water
Italian Il Dip di Percy The Dip of Percy
Croatian Percy Dove

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