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This article is about the fourth series episode. You may be looking for the eighth series episode.

“Hello, Duck! Going fishing? I'd take care if I were you."
"Well for one thing, if fish get into an engine's boiler, they always cause trouble. And for another, fish can be awfully smelly. And I know what I'm talking about. Good night.”
―Thomas advising Duck

Fish is the twenty-fourth episode of the fourth series. It is based on the story of the same name from the Railway Series book Really Useful Engines.


A special load of fish is ordered, for which extra vans are needed for The Flying Kipper. To Henry's frustration, the only ones available are old and unused. Duck shunts them into position and moments later, Thomas arrives with the post train. He warns Duck to take care, telling him of his own experience with fish. Henry is still complaining about his extra load, but his driver tells him that at least another engine will be helping them up Gordon's Hill.

At Wellsworth, Duck is waiting for Henry while workmen light up his lamp and his water tank is filled. After Henry arrives, Duck moves to the back of the train to help him to the top of Gordon's Hill without being coupled up so Henry can continue on. As the train nears the top of the hill, Henry begins to inadvertently pull away from Duck while the tail lamp on the last van falls off, causing Duck to lose sight of the train as he tries to catch up. He tried to whistle, but Henry doesn't hear him. Worse still, Henry slows down as he feels his train growing heavier. Duck then accidentally crashes into the last van, causing loads of fish to spill out, and derails himself in the process. Henry soon stops as soon as he hears the crash. And the bad smell of fish hung in the air all night long.

The mess is cleaned up later that morning and the fallen tail lamp is found at the bottom of the hill. The Fat Controller tells Duck that the accident was not his fault and that the crew should have fitted the tail lamp on properly, and assures him that he will be in working order again. Duck reflects that Thomas' earlier advice about fish was right, and tells the Fat Controller that they got him in "a right pickle."




  • This episode marked the last of a few things:
  • Edited stock footage from A Bad Day for Sir Handel is used.
    • It is edited because there are stars added to the night sky.
  • On PBS Kids Sprout airings, when Sir Topham Hatt says "We should've checked that this tail lamp was fixed on properly," it does not show a big zoom in on the tail lamp; instead, it shows a wide out zoom (which was seen before Sir Topham's appearance).
  • A Lynton and Barnstaple Railway Van used in this episode is currently owned by Twitter user ThomasTankMerch.
  • Crates labelled "Fulton's" can be seen during the episode. These are used as either a reference to Fulton's Fish Market in New York City or set dressing props from the sister television series TUGS. O.J.'s model, Lakesider III, from said series also appears in the episode.
  • A reference to the first series episode, Thomas Goes Fishing, is made.
  • This is the first episode with two things:
    • The first episode in the series to use deep chuffing sound effects for big engines.
    • The first appearance of Henry's unused surprised face from the second series, although it was in a deleted scene in Edward's Exploit.
  • Michael Angelis' line, "Then there was trouble," was re-used from Steam Roller.


  • Duck's eyes are wonky in some scenes.
  • Throughout the episode, Thomas has Edward's whistle sound.
  • Thomas' eyes are wonky in the first close up shot of him.
  • When the narrator says, "Henry was pulling his train harder than he realized," Henry's eyes are wonky.
  • Henry's lamp is not on his lamp iron.
  • In a close-up shot of Duck, his lamp has no light.
  • In the Finnish dub, Gordon's English name is used by accident.
  • As Duck is shunting the vans, two of them switch places.
  • When they reach Gordon's Hill, the middle two of the old vans switch to the other direction.


Thomas: Hello, Duck. Going fishing? I'd take care if I were you.
Duck: Why?
Thomas: Well, for one thing, if fish get into an engine's boiler, they always cause trouble. And for another, fish can be awfully smelly. And I know what I'm talking about. Good night.

  • [after Duck's unexpected mishap with the train the night before]
  • The Fat Controller: The accident wasn't your fault; we should have checked if this tail lamp was fixed on properly. We'll soon have you in working order again.
  • Duck: Thank you sir, Thomas told me to be careful about fish. They got me in a right pickle, didn't they?

In Other Languages

View content
Language Title
Albanian Peshku
Brazilian Portuguese Peixe
Czech Ryby
Danish Fisk
Dutch Vis
Finnish Kalassa
German Fisch
Greek Το φορτίο με τα ψάρια
Hungarian Vigyázz a Halakkal, Duck!
Italian Che Puzza di Pesce!
Japanese さかなにはきをつけろ
Korean 생선 열차
Latin American Spanish Como Pez en el Agua
Norwegian Fisk
Polish Ryby
Romanian Peşte
Russian Рыба
Slovenian Riba
Swedish Fisk
Ukrainian Риба
Welsh Pysgod

Home Media Releases


DVD Boxsets




  • Thomas and Stepney and other Stories (Direct-to-Home Video)
  • The Complete Series 4

DVD Packs

  • Complete Series 1-10
  • Classic Collection
  • Series Three and Series Four Double Pack


  • Thomas and Stepney and other Stories


  • Thomas and Stepney











DVD Boxsets


  • Thomas and Friends Season 1-4