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- “Oh, I don't know. I like my brown paint."
"I've always been green. I wouldn't want to be any other colour either."
"Well.. well anyway... blue is the only colour for a really useful engine. Everyone knows that.”
- ―Toby, Percy, and Thomas arguing
Thomas, Percy and the Coal, retitled Double Trouble in American releases, is the first episode of the second season. It aired in the US on the Shining Time Station episodes, Finders Keepers in 1989, reaired in Win, Lose or Draw in 1991 and reaired in the Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales episode, For the Birds in 1996.
One beautiful morning on Sodor, when his paint sparkles in the sunshine, Thomas puffs happily along his branchline with Annie and Clarabel, feeling very pleased with himself, but arrives at Elsbridge station, and claims to have the best paintwork on Sodor and brags to Percy and Toby about it. When they tell him they like their paint, Thomas disagrees and says that blue is the only colour for a really useful engine before he puffs away.
Later that day, Thomas is resting by the coal hopper when Percy arrives to fill up some trucks. Thomas decides to be cheeky, warning Percy of the trucks' antics and some unsafe buffers behind him. The trucks then push Percy into the buffers and the last truck passes the coal chute causing a pile of coal to bury Thomas and ruin his paintwork when he cries for help and begs to Percy to get him out; Percy thinks this is very funny, much to Thomas' fury. It takes so long to clean Thomas that Toby has to take Annie and Clarabel instead and pull his next train.
That night at the sheds, Thomas is angry with Percy, and accuses him for the cause of this day's incident on purpose. As Toby interprets the argument a great joke, Percy then becomes cross for thinking so, while he and Thomas continue arguing for the rest of the night.
The next day, Thomas is feeling more cheerful as Percy brings in a train of trucks from the junction. The trucks are heavy and Percy is thirsty, so he goes into the siding where the water tower is, but there is a set of faulty buffers. As Percy heads to the siding, he accidentally ploughs through the buffers and lands in a pile of coal. Thomas has seen everything and leaves when his signal turns green.
That night, Percy and Thomas forgive each other and both vow to be more careful with coal.
- Tidmouth Yard
- Ffarquhar Sheds
- The Ffarquhar Stationmaster's House
- The Branch Line Bridge
- The Watermill (deleted scene)
- This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, More About Thomas the Tank Engine.
- This episode marks the first for a few things:
- The first episode not adapted from a story written by Wilbert Awdry. Instead, it's adapted from a story written by Christopher Awdry.
- The first appearance of a truck with a clay face.
- The first episode filmed at Shepperton Studios.
- The first episode to feature the red Express Coaches.
- The first episode where either Annie or Clarabel speaks while the other does not.
- The first appearance of Tidmouth Station in the television series.
- The first episode to have Percy being Angry
- This episode replaced The Missing Coach after it was cancelled due to Britt Allcroft deciding the storyline of that episode would be too difficult for young viewers to understand.
- In the UK narration, when the coal pours down on Thomas, he shouts "Help, I'm choking!" In both US narrations, however, he instead shouts "Help!" twice. This was likely changed because of the concept of Thomas choking possibly frightening younger American kids. Despite this, both US narrations have the line "'I'm not disgraceful,' choked Thomas," said afterwards.
- This episode was the first episode of Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends that Sam Wilkinson saw.
- When the narrator says, "It took so long to clean Thomas, that he wasn't in time for his next train," a first season-styled truck is seen.
- In later versions of this episode, Christopher Awdry is not listed in the credits.
- The start of the Latin Spanish version features a brief clip of Thomas passing the Watermill from Percy's Promise.
- In the Nick Jr. version in the US, The scene of Toby taking Annie & Clarabel is cut out.
- When Shining Time Station aired on PBS, a few scenes from this episode were used to promote the show on PTV Park.
- Underneath the bridge Thomas crosses at the beginning, there is some black plastic.
- When the narrator says that Thomas is resting in a siding, Thomas' eyes are wonky.
- In Ringo's US version on the Thomas Breaks the Rules VHS, the A Cow on the Line audio tape, and also in the Japanese version, the coal chute sound effects are absent.
- Just before Thomas gets covered in coal, Percy is smiling when he is pushed through the buffers by the trucks and the noise of Percy hitting the buffers doesn't play at the exact time Percy hits the buffers.
- In the panning shot of Thomas being cleaned, a shadow can be seen moving at the back of the shed behind Thomas, possibly that of a crew member. Thomas' eyes are also looking in different directions and his face is tilted.
- When Toby backs up to Annie and Clarabel, his face is slightly loose and blu-tak is sticking out from the side of his face
- When Annie says to Clarabel, "Poor Thomas!" Thomas' eyes are wonky. To add to that Clarabel is facing backwards when Toby pulls them away.
- In the restored version, studio equipment is visible in the top corner when Toby pulls Annie and Clarabel.
- In a deleted scene, a black plastic bag, which is used to simulate water, can be seen at the bottom while Thomas, Annie, and Clarabel pass the watermill.
- Percy's eyes are wonky when he says that he has always been green.
- When Toby takes Annie and Clarabel away, Clarabel's roof is not attached properly.
- When Thomas and Percy are resting in the shed at the end, their eyes are wonky and Percy's eyebrow is peeling away.
- When Thomas is being covered in coal, the side shots show him clean but the close ups on his face show him very dirty.
- When Percy arrives with his trucks at Tidmouth, a red express coach is amongst the trucks to the left of the screen, but after that there are only trucks on that siding.
- In a close up of Thomas covered in coal at the coal hopper the hopper shakes.
- In the restored version, studio equipment is visible at the top of the screen during a close up of the buffers and the water tower.
- When Thomas tells Percy to get a drink, his face is darker.
- Studio Equipment can be seen above the water tower.
- In the close-up of Thomas very cross in the beginning, his dome and whistle are crooked.
- When Thomas is at Knapford Station, his face is darker than usual the whole scene he is there.
- Percy: Hello, Thomas. You look splendid.
- Thomas: Yes, indeed. Blue is the only proper color for an engine.
- Toby: Oh, I don't know. I like my brown paint.
- Percy: I've always been green. I wouldn't wanna be any other color, either.
- Thomas: Well, well, anyway, blue is the only color for a.. for a really useful engine. Everyone knows that.
- [he huffs away]
- Narrator: Percy said no more. He just grinned at Toby.
- Thomas: [watches the hopper load coal into Percy's trucks] Careful. Watch out with those silly trucks.
- Trucks: Go on! Go on! Go on!
- Thomas: And by the way, those buffers don't look very safe to me.
- [Percy accidentally hits said buffers; the last load of coal pours down on Thomas]
- Thomas: Help, I'm choking! (US: Help! Help!) Get me out!
- Narrator: Percy was worried, but he couldn't help laughing! Thomas' smart blue paint was covered in coal dust, from smoke-box to bunker!
- Percy: Ha-ha! You don't look really useful now, Thomas. You look really disgraceful.
- Thomas: I'm NOT disgraceful. You did that on purpose! Get me out!
- Ofuro de MiniCar
- Buzz Books - Thomas, Percy and the Coal
- Magazine stories - Thomas, Percy and the Coal
- Ladybird Books - Thomas, Percy and the Coal/Saved from Scrap
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