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Meet the Characters!, also known as Meet Thomas' Friends, are a series of promotional videos that tie into Big World! Big Adventures! and the twenty-second series. The videos are narrated by John Hasler and Joseph May as Thomas in their respective dubs and focus on a specific character, their personality, and country of origin, with some specific scenes using specially-shot footage if there is no such footage in the archives. They are available as DVD extras and uploaded to the official Thomas and Friends YouTube channels for both the UK and US. The characters being focused on are either new characters from Big World! Big Adventures! and the twenty-second series or returnees from The Great Race. The first video was released on 24th August 2018.

In 2019, the second set of these videos were produced for further new characters and returning characters from The Great Race in the twenty-third series. The roster includes new and returning characters from Italy and Brazil, as well as the Sodor Construction Company members currently in CGI.

The third set of these videos was released in 2020, featuring new character Duchess from Thomas and the Royal Engine, plus others from Marvelous Machinery and the twenty-fourth series. The Marvelous Machinery videos now mainly focus on what makes the featured characters technologically advanced and drop descriptions of their personalities. Dominique Moore also co-hosts the Marvelous Machinery videos as Ruth.

Contents

Trivia

  • In 2020, the UK versions of the videos were shown in between programmes on Milkshake!

2018

Meet Ace of Australia!

Description

Meet Ace, a super cool super fast racing car from Australia! The video was released on 24th August 2018 in the UK and 13th September 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • The events of Big World! Big Adventures! are mentioned in this video.

Video

Meet Nia of Kenya!

Description

Meet Nia, a steam engine Thomas met on his big world adventure! The video was released on 31st August 2018 in the UK and 8th September 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • The events of Big World! Big Adventures! are mentioned in this video.
  • The sequence of Nia arranging the trucks at Brendam Docks was reused in the twenty-second series episode, Counting on Nia.

Goofs

  • In the "scrapbook" scenes, the flag of South Africa is used instead of the flag of Kenya.

Video

Meet Beau of America!

Description

Meet Beau, a really cool mining engine that works in the wild west! The video was released on 7th September 2018 in the UK and on 4th October 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Goofs

  • When Beau rotates around, his leading pony truck does not move and faces the same direction throughout as Beau spins.

Video

Meet Hong-Mei of China!

Description

Meet Hong Mei, a blue tank engine just like Thomas! The video was released on 14th September 2018 in the UK and on 27th September 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet Yong-Bao of China!

Description

Meet the beautiful and majestic Yong Bao from China! The video was released on 20th September 2018 in the US and 2nd November 2018 in the UK.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • The events of The Great Race are mentioned in this video.

Video

Meet Noor Jehan of India!

Description

Noor Jehan is so elegant and glamourous. The video was released on 21st September 2018 in the UK and 29th November 2018 in the US.

Characters

Episodes

Locations

Trivia

  • This is the first video in which the main subject of the video does not speak.

Video

Meet Rajiv of India!

Description

Meet Rajiv - the most glamorous steam engine on the railway! The video was released on 28th September 2018 in the UK and 22nd November 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

Video

Meet Shane of Australia!

Description

Shane is a large and powerful steam engine. The video was released on 5th October 2018 in the UK and on 25th October 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

Video

Meet Rebecca of England!

Description

Meet Rebecca, a steam engine who has recently come to work on the Island of Sodor! The video was released on 12th October 2018 in the UK and 18th October 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet Shankar of India!

Description

Meet Shankar, a hardworking diesel engine from the Indian railway! The video was released on 19th October 2018 in the UK and 6th December 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • The events of Tiger Trouble are mentioned in this video.

Goofs

  • In the UK narration, the music at the start of the video is distorted.

Video

Meet Tamika of Australia!

Description

Meet Tamika, a historic steam engine from Australia! The video was released on 26th October 2018 in the UK and 13th December 2018 in the US.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet Isla of Australia!

Description

Isla is from Australia, just like Shane. She is brave and flies. The video was released 1st November 2018 in the US and 9th November 2018 in the UK.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet Ashima of India!

Description

Meet Ashima, a friend of Thomas from India. The video was released in the US on 25th June 2019.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

2019

Meet Lorenzo and Beppe of Italy!

Description

Lorenzo is a vintage locomotive. He was once a fast and impulsive engine, but in a bid for notoriety and desperate to find treasure, he would rush into archaeological digs without taking the time to understand his surroundings - which led to him being trapped in a disused dig... until Thomas rescues him!

He loves the sound of his own voice and being the center of attention, especially while singing operatic ditties with his small coach, Beppe. Whilst his speaking voice may be deep, Lorenzo has a classical tenor singing voice.

Beppe is Lorenzo's small coach - he loves to sensationalise situations and idolises Lorenzo. Beppe and Lorenzo are like an operatic double act and often break out into song. Beppe sings the bass notes to Lorenzo's tenor voice. The video was released in the UK on 23rd July 2019.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • This is the first short to introduce two characters at the same time (Lorenzo and Beppe).
  • As of this short:

Video

Meet Gina of Italy!

Description

Gina is an enthusiastic and passionate engine who loves her homeland of Italy. She's a loyal friend to Thomas but can get a little disgruntled with him when he makes silly remarks about her beloved country's history. The video was released in the UK on 12th July 2019.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet Stefano of Italy!

Description

Stefano is a huge amphibious vehicle who can transport engines and other vehicles around the world. He is a bit of a showboat and loves to wow people with his amphibious ability, and revels in their surprise. He is a confident performer and raconteur who likes to tell stories and sees himself as a boat of the world. Stefano can be quite charming and gentle and is not really as full of himself as his pompous manner might suggest. There is a genuine warmth to his larger-than-life, friendly personality, and he truly cares about others. The video was released in the UK on 28th July 2019.

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet the Sodor Construction Company!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • This is the first Meet the Characters video to be based on Sodor (not counting Rebecca's).
  • This is the only Digs and Discoveries themed video not to have a snippet of The Journey Never Ends possibly due to taking place on Sodor.

Goofs

  • In the turntable view of Max and Monty, Monty has the number 15.

Video

Meet Raul of Brazil!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet Gabriela and Cassia of Brazil!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

Video

Meet Ester of Italy!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Video

Meet Gustavo of Brazil!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

Goofs

  • In some shots, Gustavo's name and number are displayed backwards due to the clip being mirrored.

Video

2020

Meet Duchess of England!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • The drawing of Duchess seen at the beginning and end of the short is drawn in the style of the Rev W. Awdry's early Railway Series drawings.
  • The UK DVD release displays The Royal Engine DVD logo in the first and second shots. In the US release, The Royal Engine logo is displayed when Thomas says the name in the fifth shot.
  • Various pieces of edited stock footage are used:

Video

Meet Ruth of America!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Episodes

Trivia

  • This is the first Meet the Characters! video to focus on a human character.
  • Orthographics of Metal Man, the Blastbooster-7 and the windmill at Ruth's Workshop appear in the background.
  • Unlike the shorts before it, this video is styled as a brief interview.

Video

Meet Kenji of Japan!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Trivia

  • This is the first Meet the Characters! video not to use any stock footage.
  • A modified version of the Cherry Blossom Runby in China, with added catenary, is used to represent Japan.

Video

Meet Sonny of England!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Trivia

  • A side orthographic of Sonny appears in the background.

Video

Meet Marcio and Marcia of Brazil!

Description

TBA

Characters

Locations

Trivia

  • Despite not appearing in A New Arrival or World of Tomorrow, the video treats Marcia and Marcio as Marvelous Machinery characters, therefore having Ruth describe how they make steam rather than having Thomas describe their personalities.
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