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This article is about the episode. You may be looking for the magazine story.

“An honest steamie can beat a pouty puffer ANY day!”

Edward the Great is the fourteenth episode of the eighth series.


Edward enjoys being useful and helpful, but he feels left out when he is not as strong as the other engines. The Duke and Duchess of Boxford are visiting along with their engine, Spencer to see their new summerhouse. When Spencer arrives at Knapford, his driver tells him that he beat Gordon's record. Spencer boasts that he is faster and finer than all the engines on Sodor put together which makes Sir Topham Hatt's engines very cross. Sir Topham Hatt arrives and tells them that whilst Spencer is taking the Duke and Duchess to their new summerhouse, another engine will take their furniture. Thomas, Percy, James and Gordon want the chance to pull it to show Spencer that they are faster than him, but Sir Topham Hatt lets Edward take the furniture as the others have other work to do. James and Gordon believe that Edward will lose the race, but Thomas and Percy stand up for Edward and that he can beat Spencer. Edward takes off, but Spencer speeds past Edward until he is out of sight.

Edward struggles up Gordon's hill with the heavy furniture, but makes it to the top and races down the hill to catch up to Spencer. Later Spencer stops at Wellsworth for the Duke and Duchess to have tea and cakes. Edward catches up and is very tired and wishing for a rest, but continues on when the stationmaster and the porters cheer for him when they hear about the race. The Duke and Duchess finish their tea and cakes and Spencer goes off in a flash speeding past Edward once again leaving him to struggle with the heavy furniture.

Later, Spencer stops once again for the Duke and Duchess to take some photographs of the countryside and Spencer goes to sleep to pass the time, not worrying that he will lose. When Gordon is puffing by and sees Spencer, he believes Edward is losing the race and says that Edward is a waste of steam. But when he sees Edward trying so hard to catch up, he feels bad about what he said and congratulates Edward and that he is a credit to the railway. Edward is so happy that he picks up speed and finds puff he never knew he had.

When the Duke and Duchess finish taking the photographs and get back on board, Spencer's driver rings the bell for him to go, but Spencer does not hear the bell as he is still asleep dreaming of victory. He also does not hear that Edward puffed past him. When Spencer's driver rings the bell again, Spencer wakes up shocked to see that Edward is heading towards the summerhouse and tries to catch up with him, but his driver tells him to slow down because of the old tracks. Spencer slows down and knows he is going to lose the race. Edward makes it to the summerhouse and is happy that he had won the race against Spencer and he feels like the pride of the Sodor Railway.




  • Going by production order, this is the eighth episode of the eighth series.
  • The title of the episode is a reference to a Achaemenid-Persian military king from Iran, Cyrus the Great.
  • Donald and Douglas were going to appear in the episode, but they were cut for unknown reasons. This would have been their only full appearance in the eighth series, as they are otherwise only mentioned in You Can Do it, Toby! Donald and Douglas' deleted scene appeared in the My Thomas Story Library book of Spencer with the twins cheering Edward on and telling him he is a first rate engine and the shot where they appeared in would be featured in the music video for A World Around You.
  • This is the first episode to feature Edward's unused fourth series unamused face.
  • Stock footage from the seventh series episode Gordon and Spencer is used.
  • This episode marks the last of a few things:
    • The last episode where Spencer is seen in his blue grey livery as starting from his next appearance onwards, his paint changes to metallic silver. This could be the reason why he did not appear in the ninth series.
    • The last appearance of The Flour Mill to date.
  • While the Duke and Duchess have refreshments, posters advertising the White Star Line and the London, Midland and Scottish Railway are visible in the top left corner. A picture of City of Truro can also be seen inside Spencer's coach. 
  • The concept of Spencer falling asleep and unintentionally allowing Edward to overtake him by having him win the race is extremely similar to Aesop's fable, The Tortoise and the Hare. The story and title are used for another episode.
  • A poster at Knapford reads "Allicia Botti Flower Show Grand Opening!" in the close-up of Spencer's driver.
  • From this episode throughout the rest of the series, Salty's horn sound is Derek's in two half steps higher in pitch.
  • In The Complete Series 8 DVD and other television broadcasts, the last bit of music was omitted at the end.
  • This episode was shown on CiTV on 29th June 2005 for the last strand of the thirteen episodes.


  • Edward's whistle is bent in the opening shot.
  • When Edward stops to rest on a siding, Henry has Gordon's whistle sound.
  • Due to the use of stock footage, Spencer has bronze buffers, and the bores of Henry's Tunnel have one track each.
  • Spencer has the sound of an aeroplane jet engine, but Spencer is a steam engine.
  • A camera shadow can be seen on Edward when he leaves Knapford station.
  • In the first overhead shot of Edward and Spencer racing, Spencer's steam platform is visible.
  • When Edward is climbing Gordon's Hill, it has one more track than it normally does.
  • A rare deleted scene still shows one of the furniture truck's wheels derailed.
  • When Spencer stops, the Duke and Duchess are already out of the coach taking pictures. Also, Spencer's puffing is out of sync with his speed.
  • When Edward sneak's pass Spencer sleeping, his eyes are wonky.


In Other Languages

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Language Title
Chinese 伟大的爱德华
Croatian Edo veliki
Czech Edvard veliký
Danish Edward den store
Dutch Edward de Grote
Finnish Edvard Suuri
French Edouard est un Champion!
German Edward, der Große
Hungarian A Verseny
Italian Edward il grande
Japanese いだいなエドワード
Korean 에드워드의 승리
Norwegian Edward den store
Polish Edek Wielki
Portuguese Edward, o Grande
Romanian Edward cel Mare
Russian Эдвард великий
Slovak Veľký Eduard
Spanish El Gran Edward (LA)
Edward el Grande (SPN)
Swedish Edvard den store
Thai เอ็ดเวิร์ดผู้ยิ่งใหญ่

Home Media Releases


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DVD Boxsets


  • The Complete Series 8

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DVD Boxsets





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