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The eighth series of Thomas & Friends was the first series produced entirely after HiT Entertainment's acquisition of Gullane Entertainment had completed. It was narrated by Michael Angelis in the UK and Michael Brandon in the US. It first premiered on VHS and DVD in May 2004 before airing on television in August 2004 in the UK. It was also first broadcast in September 2004 in the US as well.

Production

After their purchase of Gullane, HiT Entertainment decided to make a number of major changes to the format of the series. Jan Page was replaced by Paul Larson and Abi Grant (both involved with the franchise since 2001) as story editor, while Sam Barlow was appointed as a script executive, granting him a supervisory position over the show's writing. The primary cast was similarly revamped through the creation of a solidified main cast of eight engines, dubbed the Steam Team. In order to establish its presence, all episodes would feature one or more of these eight characters in leading roles, while other characters were relegated to supporting parts or eliminated altogether, with many not returning to the show as regulars for a decade or more. Intending to relaunch the series on TV in the United States following three years of primarily direct-to-video distribution, HiT extended each episode's runtime from four and a half to seven minutes and created a 30-minute block for the series on PBS containing two new episodes, an episode from the previous series (albeit with rescored background music) and several musical numbers and CGI learning segments. To comply with PBS's programming mandates, the tone of the series became more overtly educational, with noticeably simplified vocabulary and the main cast of engines being written far more analogously to young children (complete with a vastly reduced role for their drivers, who would vanish almost entirely in subsequent model series).

Following a legal dispute, veteran music composers Mike O'Donnell and Junior Campbell were replaced by Robert Hartshorne and songwriter Ed Welch, while David Mitton was superseded as director by longtime Shepperton crew member Stephen Asquith. Sony digital camera equipment similarly replaced the 35mm film camera utilized for the previous seven series.

Series 8 was originally meant to be produced by Gullane Entertainment as far back as 2001, Gullane were going make 78 episodes that would take up 3 seasons. However, the acquisition of Gullane by HiT the following year only enabled them to produce 52 episodes (or two full seasons).[1]

Work on Series 8 began sometime in 2003, shortly after the seventh series and Jack and the Sodor Construction Company had been filmed. A draft of a pitch bible used for this season would be written in March 2003.

Episodes

Screenshot Title Written By Episode number #
ThomasandtheFireworkDisplay82 Thomas and the Firework Display Abi Grant
Paul Larson
#01
Thomas is upset that James gets the task of delivering fireworks instead of him but gets his chance when the splendid red engine breaks down.
Percy'sNewWhistle34 Percy's New Whistle James Mason #02
Percy keeps blasts his whistle, not realising he is causing trouble for his friends.
Fish(Season8)40 Fish Paul Larson #03
Thomas is sent to help Arthur on the coastal branch and is told to take only five trucks at a time. But because Thomas does not like the smell of fish, he wants to get the job done and over with.
Emily'sAdventure56 Emily's Adventure Paul Larson #04
Emily learns to ask nicely whilst collecting timber to repair Farmer McColl's barn roof after a big storm damages it.
ThomasSavesTheDay82 Thomas Saves the Day James Mason #05
Thomas tries to tackle a dangerous bend without Annie and Clarabel's assistance.
SqueakRattleAndRoll28 Squeak, Rattle and Roll Marc Seal #06
Gordon tries to hide his squeaking, rattling and knocking after Diesel tells him he is going to be scrapped soon.
Thomas,EmilyandtheSnowplough55 Thomas, Emily and the Snowplough Abi Grant #07
Thomas ignores Emily's advice to put on his snowplough and as a result, ends up getting into trouble in the snow.
EdwardtheGreat24 Edward the Great Abi Grant #08
Edward has a race with Spencer to the Duke and Duchess of Boxford's summer house.
SpicAndSpan79 Spic and Span Marc Seal #09
Thomas and Percy try to beat Gordon, Emily and James in a cleanliness competition when the railway inspector comes for a visit.
JamesGoesTooFar55 James Goes Too Far James Mason #10
James refuses to help his friends when given an important job but he learns his lesson after running out of water.
ThomasGetsItRight65 Thomas Gets it Right Robin Rigby #11
Thomas wants to make multiple journeys but he is disappointed when he has to deliver eggs slowly for Farmer McColl.
YouCanDoItToby62 You Can Do it, Toby! Paul Larson #12
Toby has to look after Wellsworth yard while Edward is at Brendam but is worried about pushing Gordon and the express up his hill.
PercyandtheMagicCarpet35 Percy and the Magic Carpet Abi Grant #13
Percy is disappointed about delivering a carpet until Salty tells him that it could be magic.
ThomasAndTheCircus96 Thomas and the Circus Abi Grant #14
Thomas is told to take the circus train and to share the load with Percy and James due to its weight. Thomas wants all the glory, so he tries to pull the circus train all by himself.
Percy'sBigMistake76 Percy's Big Mistake Abi Grant #15
Percy is frightened he will be sent to the scrapyards after being late too often.
Don'tTellThomas83 Don't Tell Thomas Paul Larson #16
Thomas feels upset about being left out of a Christmas surprise that is being arranged. But when Harold tells him that he hasn't, he finds out the surprise is for the number one engine himself.
Emily'sNewRoute74 Emily's New Route James Mason #17
Emily is scared of a monster in Black Loch but finds out that the monster turns out to be a family of seals.
ChickensToSchool68 Chickens to School Paul Larson #18
A lack of sleep gets the better of Thomas as he muddles up his jobs, so he needs help from Edward and Percy.
GordonTakesCharge30 Gordon Takes Charge Paul Larson #19
Percy has not taken passengers in a very long time, so during the Christmas season, Gordon teaches the small green engine how to treat coaches but ends up showing off.
ThomasandtheTuba14 Thomas and the Tuba Dave Ingham #20
Thomas is so excited to collect the brass band and take them to a park for Lady Hatt's birthday, that he leaves the tuba player behind.
HenryAndTheWishingTree20 Henry and the Wishing Tree Abi Grant
Paul Larson
#21
Henry wishes that he could pull the express at a wishing tree in the forest but soon learns to be careful about what he wishes for.
TooHotForThomas55 Too Hot for Thomas Paul Larson #22
Thomas is dismayed when he has to get cream, strawberries and chocolate to make ice cream instead of taking children on a hot day at the seaside.
JamesGetsANewCoat8 James Gets a New Coat Abi Grant #23
After James gets repainted, he is too busy showing off to do his job. He soon gets covered in coal on his way to Brendam Docks, with his hopes of being seen.
ThomasToTheRescue64 Thomas to the Rescue Abi Grant
Paul Larson
#24
Diesel gives Thomas a hard time at the quarry but regrets what he said after taking on a batch of bad fuel.
AsGoodasGordon29 As Good as Gordon Abi Grant #25
Emily gets a chance to pull the express and tries to do as good of a job as Gordon.
Halloween58 Halloween Dave Ingham #26
Emily accidentally scares herself as well as Thomas, 'Arry and Bert at the smelter's yard on Halloween night.

Screenshot Title Written by Original UK release date Episode number #
ThomasandtheTuba14 Thomas and the Tuba Dave Ingham 1 August 2004 #01
Thomas is so excited to collect the brass band and take them to a park for Lady Hatt's birthday, that he leaves the tuba player behind.
Percy'sNewWhistle34 Percy's New Whistle James Mason 1 August 2004 #02
Percy keeps blasts his whistle, not realising he is causing trouble for his friends.
ThomasToTheRescue64 Thomas to the Rescue Abi Grant
Paul Larson
8 August 2004 #03
Diesel gives Thomas a hard time at the quarry but regrets what he said after taking on a batch of bad fuel.
HenryAndTheWishingTree20 Henry and the Wishing Tree Abi Grant
Paul Larson
8 August 2004 #04
Henry wishes that he could pull the express at a wishing tree in the forest but soon learns to be careful about what he wishes for.
JamesGetsANewCoat8 James Gets a New Coat Abi Grant 15 August 2004 #05
After James gets repainted, he is too busy showing off to do his job. He soon gets covered in coal on his way to Brendam Docks, with his hopes of being seen.
ThomasSavesTheDay82 Thomas Saves the Day James Mason 15 August 2004 #06
Thomas tries to tackle a dangerous bend without Annie and Clarabel's assistance.
Percy'sBigMistake76 Percy's Big Mistake Abi Grant 22 August 2004 #07
Percy is frightened he will be sent to the scrapyards after being late too often.
Thomas,EmilyandtheSnowplough55 Thomas, Emily and the Snowplough Abi Grant 22 August 2004 #08
Thomas ignores Emily's advice to put on his snowplough and as a result, ends up getting into trouble in the snow.
Don'tTellThomas83 Don't Tell Thomas Paul Larson 29 August 2004 #09
Thomas feels upset about being left out of a Christmas surprise that is being arranged. But when Harold tells him that he hasn't, he finds out the surprise is for the number one engine himself.
Emily'sNewRoute74 Emily's New Route James Mason 29 August 2004 #10
Emily is scared of a monster in Black Loch but finds out that the monster turns out to be a family of seals.
ThomasandtheFireworkDisplay82 Thomas and the Firework Display Abi Grant
Paul Larson
5 September 2004 #11
Thomas is upset that James gets the task of delivering fireworks instead of him but gets his chance when the splendid red engine breaks down.
GordonTakesCharge30 Gordon Takes Charge Paul Larson 5 September 2004 #12
Percy has not taken passengers in a very long time, so during the Christmas season, Gordon teaches the small green engine how to treat coaches but ends up showing off.
SpicAndSpan79 Spic and Span Marc Seal 12 September 2004 #13
Thomas and Percy try to beat Gordon, Emily and James in a cleanliness competition when the railway inspector comes for a visit.
EdwardtheGreat24 Edward the Great Abi Grant 12 September 2004 #14
Edward has a race with Spencer to the Duke and Duchess of Boxford's summer house.
SqueakRattleAndRoll28 Squeak, Rattle and Roll Marc Seal 19 September 2004 #15
Gordon tries to hide his squeaking, rattling and knocking after Diesel tells him he is going to be scrapped soon.
ThomasAndTheCircus96 Thomas and the Circus Abi Grant 19 September 2004 #16
Thomas is told to take the circus train and to share the load with Percy and James due to its weight. Thomas wants all the glory, so he tries to pull the circus train all by himself.
ThomasGetsItRight65 Thomas Gets it Right Robin Rigby 26 September 2004 #17
Thomas wants to make multiple journeys but he is disappointed when he has to deliver eggs slowly for Farmer McColl.
AsGoodasGordon29 As Good as Gordon Abi Grant 26 September 2004 #18
Emily gets a chance to pull the express and tries to do as good of a job as Gordon.
Fish(Season8)40 Fish Paul Larson 3 October 2004 #19
Thomas is sent to help Arthur on the coastal branch and is told to take only five trucks at a time. But because Thomas does not like the smell of fish, he wants to get the job done and over with.
Emily'sAdventure56 Emily's Adventure Paul Larson 3 October 2004 #20
Emily learns to ask nicely whilst collecting timber to repair Farmer McColl's barn roof after a big storm damages it.
Halloween58 Halloween Dave Ingham 10 October 2004 #21
Emily accidentally scares herself as well as Thomas, 'Arry and Bert at the smelter's yard on Halloween night.
YouCanDoItToby62 You Can Do it, Toby! Paul Larson 10 October 2004 #22
Toby has to look after Wellsworth yard while Edward is at Brendam but is worried about pushing Gordon and the express up his hill.
JamesGoesTooFar55 James Goes Too Far James Mason 17 October 2004 #23
James refuses to help his friends when given an important job but he learns his lesson after running out of water.
ChickensToSchool68 Chickens to School Paul Larson 17 October 2004 #24
A lack of sleep gets the better of Thomas as he muddles up his jobs, so he needs help from Edward and Percy.
TooHotForThomas55 Too Hot for Thomas Paul Larson 24 October 2004 #25
Thomas is dismayed when he has to get cream, strawberries and chocolate to make ice cream instead of taking children on a hot day at the seaside.
PercyandtheMagicCarpet35 Percy and the Magic Carpet Abi Grant 24 October 2004 #26
Percy is disappointed about delivering a carpet until Salty tells him that it could be magic.

Screenshot Title Written by Original US release date Episode number #
ThomasandtheTuba14 Thomas and the Tuba Dave Ingham 5 September 2004 #01
Thomas is so excited to collect the brass band and take them to a park for Lady Hatt's birthday, that he leaves the tuba player behind.
Percy'sNewWhistle34 Percy's New Whistle James Mason 5 September 2004 #02
Percy keeps blasts his whistle, not realising he is causing trouble for his friends.
ThomasToTheRescue64 Thomas to the Rescue Abi Grant
Paul Larson
September 12, 2004 #03
Diesel gives Thomas a hard time at the quarry but regrets what he said after taking on a batch of bad fuel.
HenryAndTheWishingTree20 Henry and the Wishing Tree Abi Grant
Paul Larson
12 September 2004 #04
Henry wishes that he could pull the express at a wishing tree in the forest but soon learns to be careful about what he wishes for.
JamesGetsANewCoat8 James Gets a New Coat Abi Grant 19 September 2004 #05
After James gets repainted, he is too busy showing off to do his job. He soon gets covered in coal on his way to Brendam Docks, with his hopes of being seen.
ThomasSavesTheDay82 Thomas Saves the Day James Mason 19 September 2004 #06
Thomas tries to tackle a dangerous bend without Annie and Clarabel's assistance.
Percy'sBigMistake76 Percy's Big Mistake Abi Grant 26 September 2004 #07
Percy is frightened he will be sent to the scrapyards after being late too often.
Thomas,EmilyandtheSnowplough55 Thomas, Emily and the Snowplough Abi Grant 26 September 2004 #08
Thomas ignores Emily's advice to put on his snowplow and as a result, ends up getting into trouble in the snow.
Don'tTellThomas83 Don't Tell Thomas Paul Larson 3 October 2004 #09
Thomas feels upset about being left out of a Christmas surprise that is being arranged. But when Harold tells him that he hasn't, he finds out the surprise is for the number one engine himself.
Emily'sNewRoute74 Emily's New Route James Mason 3 October 2004 #10
Emily is scared of a monster in Black Loch but finds out that the monster turns out to be a family of seals.
ThomasandtheFireworkDisplay82 Thomas and the Firework Display Abi Grant
Paul Larson
10 October 2004 #11
Thomas is upset that James gets the task of delivering fireworks instead of him but gets his chance when the splendid red engine breaks down.
GordonTakesCharge30 Gordon Takes Charge Paul Larson 10 October 2004 #12
Percy has not taken passengers in a very long time, so during the Christmas season, Gordon teaches the small green engine how to treat coaches but ends up showing off.
SpicAndSpan79 Spic and Span Marc Seal 17 October 2004 #13
Thomas and Percy try to beat Gordon, Emily and James in a cleanliness competition when the railway inspector comes for a visit.
EdwardtheGreat24 Edward the Great Abi Grant 17 October 2004 #14
Edward has a race with Spencer to the Duke and Duchess of Boxford's summer house.
SqueakRattleAndRoll28 Squeak, Rattle and Roll Marc Seal 24 October 2004 #15
Gordon tries to hide his squeaking, rattling and knocking after Diesel tells him he is going to be scrapped soon.
ThomasAndTheCircus96 Thomas and the Circus Abi Grant 24 October 2004 #16
Thomas is told to take the circus train and to share the load with Percy and James due to its weight. Thomas wants all the glory, so he tries to pull the circus train all by himself.
ThomasGetsItRight65 Thomas Gets it Right Robin Rigby 31 October 2004 #17
Thomas wants to make multiple journeys but he is disappointed when he has to deliver eggs slowly for Farmer McColl.
AsGoodasGordon29 As Good as Gordon Abi Grant 31 October 2004 #18
Emily gets a chance to pull the express and tries to do as good of a job as Gordon.
Fish(Season8)40 Fish Paul Larson 7 November 2004 #19
Thomas is sent to help Arthur on the coastal branch and is told to take only five freight cars at a time. But because Thomas does not like the smell of fish, he wants to get the job done and over with.
Emily'sAdventure56 Emily's Adventure Paul Larson 7 November 2004 #20
Emily learns to ask nicely whilst collecting timber to repair Farmer McColl's barn roof after a big storm damages it.
Halloween58 Halloween Dave Ingham 14 November 2004 #21
Emily accidentally scares herself as well as Thomas, 'Arry and Bert at the smelter's yard on Halloween night.
YouCanDoItToby62 You Can Do it, Toby! Paul Larson 14 November 2004 #22
Toby has to look after Wellsworth yard while Edward is at Brendam but is worried about pushing Gordon and the express up his hill.
JamesGoesTooFar55 James Goes Too Far James Mason 21 November 2004 #23
James refuses to help his friends when given an important job but he learns his lesson after running out of water.
ChickensToSchool68 Chickens to School Paul Larson 21 November 2004 #24
A lack of sleep gets the better of Thomas as he muddles up his jobs, so he needs help from Edward and Percy.
TooHotForThomas55 Too Hot for Thomas Paul Larson 28 November 2004 #25
Thomas is dismayed when he has to get cream, strawberries and chocolate to make ice cream instead of taking children on a hot day at the seaside.
PercyandtheMagicCarpet35 Percy and the Magic Carpet Abi Grant 28 November 2004 #26
Percy is disappointed about delivering a carpet until Salty tells him that it could be magic.

Screenshot Title Written by Original JPN release date Episode number #
YouCanDoItToby62 トビー、きみならできるよ (Toby, You Can Do It) Paul Larson 2 April 2006 #01
Toby has to look after Wellsworth yard while Edward is at Brendam but is worried about pushing Gordon and the express up his hill.
Fish(Season8)40 さかな (Fish) Paul Larson 7 April 2006 #02
Thomas is sent to help Arthur on the coastal branch and is told to take only five trucks at a time. But because Thomas does not like the smell of fish, he wants to get the job done and over with.
Emily'sAdventure56 エミリーのぼうけん (Emily's Adventure) Paul Larson 14 April 2006 #03
Emily learns to ask nicely whilst collecting timber to repair Farmer McColl's barn roof after a big storm damages it.
EdwardtheGreat24 いだいなエドワード (Nice Edward) Abi Grant 21 April 2006 #04
Edward has a race with Spencer to the Duke and Duchess of Boxford's summer house.
Percy'sBigMistake76 パーシーのだいしっぱい (Percy) Abi Grant 5 May 2006 #05
Percy is frightened he will be sent to the scrapyards after being late too often.
JamesGetsANewCoat8 ジェームスのあたらしいとそう (James' New and GO) Abi Grant 19 May 2006 #06
After James gets repainted, he is too busy showing off to do his job. He soon gets covered in coal on his way to Brendam Docks, with his hopes of being seen.
SpicAndSpan79 きちんときれい (Neat and Clean) Marc Seal 2 June 2006 #07
Thomas and Percy try to beat Gordon, Emily and James in a cleanliness competition when the railway inspector comes for a visit.
HenryAndTheWishingTree20 ヘンリーとねがいのかなうき (Henry and Wish Kanouki) Abi Grant
Paul Larson
16 June 2006 #08
Henry wishes that he could pull the express at a wishing tree in the forest but soon learns to be careful about what he wishes for.
ThomasToTheRescue64 トーマス、だいかつやく (Thomas, Quick) Abi Grant
Paul Larson
30 June 2006 #09
Diesel gives Thomas a hard time at the quarry but regrets what he said after taking on a batch of bad fuel.
ThomasandtheTuba14 トーマスとチューバ (Thomas and Tuba) Dave Ingham 14 July 2006 #10
Thomas is so excited to collect the brass band and take them to a park for Lady Hatt's birthday, that he leaves the tuba player behind.
SqueakRattleAndRoll28 キーキー、ガタガタ、コンコン (Squeak, Rattle, Con-Con) Marc Seal 28 July 2006 #11
Gordon tries to hide his squeaking, rattling and knocking after Diesel tells him he is going to be scrapped soon.
Emily'sNewRoute74 エミリーのあたらしいろせん (Emily's New Rosen) James Mason 11 August 2006 #12
Emily is scared of a monster in Black Loch but finds out that the monster turns out to be a family of seals.
ThomasGetsItRight65 トーマス、ただしくやる (Thomas, Do it Right) Robin Rigby 1 September 2006 #13
Thomas wants to make multiple journeys but he is disappointed when he has to deliver eggs slowly for Farmer McColl.
TooHotForThomas55 トーマスにはあつすぎる (Too Hot for Thomas) Paul Larson 15 September 2006 #14
Thomas is dismayed when he has to get cream, strawberries and chocolate to make ice cream instead of taking children on a hot day at the seaside.
ThomasSavesTheDay82 トーマス、きゅうばをすくう (Thomas Scoops Kyuba) James Mason 29 September 2006 #15
Thomas tries to tackle a dangerous bend without Annie and Clarabel's assistance.
Halloween58 ハロウィン (Halloween) Dave Ingham 13 October 2006 #16
Emily accidentally scares herself as well as Thomas, 'Arry and Bert at the smelter's yard on Halloween night.
ThomasandtheFireworkDisplay82 トーマスとはなびたいかい (Do You Want to Fly with Thomas) Abi Grant
Paul Larson
27 October 2006 #17
Thomas is upset that James gets the task of delivering fireworks instead of him but gets his chance when the splendid red engine breaks down.
ChickensToSchool68 にわとりがっこうへいく (Go to Chicken School) Paul Larson 17 November 2006 #18
A lack of sleep gets the better of Thomas as he muddles up his jobs, so he needs help from Edward and Percy.
PercyandtheMagicCarpet35 パーシーとまほうのじゅうたん (Percy and the Magic Carpet) Abi Grant 1 December 2006 #19
Percy is disappointed about delivering a carpet until Salty tells him that it could be magic.
ThomasAndTheCircus96 トーマスとサーカス (Thomas and the Circus) Abi Grant 16 December 2006 #20
Thomas is told to take the circus train and to share the load with Percy and James due to its weight. Thomas wants all the glory, so he tries to pull the circus train all by himself.
AsGoodasGordon29 ゴードンとおなじ (Gordon) Abi Grant 19 January 2007 #21
Emily gets a chance to pull the express and tries to do as good of a job as Gordon.
Don'tTellThomas83 トーマスにはないしょ (Not in Thomas) Paul Larson 2 February 2007 #09
Thomas feels upset about being left out of a Christmas surprise that is being arranged. But when Harold tells him that he hasn't, he finds out the surprise is for the number one engine himself.
Thomas,EmilyandtheSnowplough55 トーマスとエミリーとゆきかき (Thomas and Emily and Yukikaki) Abi Grant 16 February 2007 #23
Thomas ignores Emily's advice to put on his snowplow and as a result, ends up getting into trouble in the snow.
JamesGoesTooFar55 いきすぎだよ、ジェームス (You're Going Too Far, James) James Mason 2 March 2007 #24
James refuses to help his friends when given an important job but he learns his lesson after running out of water.
Percy'sNewWhistle34 パーシーときてき (Percy) James Mason 9 March 2007 #25
Percy keeps blasts his whistle, not realising he is causing trouble for his friends.
GordonTakesCharge30 ゴードン、せんせいになる (Gordon Becomes a Teacher) Paul Larson 16 March 2007 #26
Percy has not taken passengers in a very long time, so during the Christmas season, Gordon teaches the small green engine how to treat coaches but ends up showing off.

Songs

Screenshot Title Composers Original release date
Sounds(song)5 Sounds Ed Welch 18 May 2004 (US/CAN; VHS/DVD)
"All Aboard!" and "Close the doors!"
Whistle blows and the engine roars...
EngineRollcall45 Engine Roll Call Ed Welch 18 May 2004 (US/CAN; VHS/DVD)
They're two, they're four, they're six, they're eight,
Shunting trucks and hauling freight...
Percy'sBigMistake10 A World Around You Ed Welch Summer 2004 (US; VHS)
Have a look about you, take in what you see
There's a world around you wherever you may be...
Emily'sNewCoaches60 Emily Ed Welch 15 August 2004 (UK)
There's no one quite like Emily
Friendly, emerald Emily...
SnowEngine41 Surprises Ed Welch 29 August 2004 (UK)
Surprises, surprises, they come all shapes and sizes
You never know what's round the bend...
YouCanDoItToby62 Determination Ed Welch 12 September 2004 (UK)
Don't give up, show determination.
Don't give up. You'll be a big sensation...
Patience16 Patience Ed Welch 26 September 2004 (UK)
Patience is a virtue, so it never hurts to
Take a little time to see...
SqueakRattleAndRoll1 Ode to Gordon Ed Welch 10 October 2004 (UK)
We'll sing a song for Gordon,
He's big, he's fast, he's proud...

Characters

Characters Introduced

Locations

Half Hour Format

Series 8 was the first series to use a half hour format to air Thomas & Friends, airing in the UK and Ireland on Nick Jr., PBS Kids and PBS Retro in the US and Treehouse TV in Canada. In the airing, two Series 8 episodes, one Series 7 episode, a few Learning Segments and a song were paired. In the Nick Jr. airings in the UK and Ireland, Michael Angelis' narrations of Series 7 episodes are paired with Robert Hartshorne's music replacing Mike O'Donnell and Junior Campbell's music. When aired in Latin America on Discovery Kids, the Series 7 episodes were no longer paired in the airings. The UK airings were also released on DVD in South Africa, with the exception of Patience.

Sounds

South African DVD release: Full Steam Ahead

Differences

South African DVD release: All Aboard with the Steam Team

Personality

South African DVD release: Arise and Shine

Listening

South African DVD release: Whistle Stop

Surprises

South African DVD release: Hide and Peep

Responsibility

South African VHS/DVD Release: Making Tracks with Thomas

Determination

South African DVD release: The World's Strongest Engine

Sharing

South African DVD release: Happy Little Helpers

Patience

Difficulties

South African DVD release: It's Great to be an Engine!

Confidence

South African DVD release: Bold and Brave

Helping

South African DVD release: Peep! Peep! Hurray! Three Cheers for Thomas

The Weather

South African DVD release: Truck-loads of Fun

Trivia

  • This was the first series of several things:
    • The first series of HiT Entertainment's new format of the series in the UK.
      • But because the seventh series, due to it being paired with this series, was the first series of HiT's new format in the US.
      • This also technically means that this is the second series of HiT Entertainment's new format in the US.
    • The first series to incorporate CGI into live-action; it was mainly used for the overhead map in the opening sequence and for the steam that puffs out of the engines.
    • The first series since the third series where Diesel appears in more than one episode.
    • The first series in which Mavis appears in only one episode.
    • The first series with Paul Larson and Abi Grant as script editors/head writers (not counting Jack and the Sodor Construction Company).
    • Simon Spencer's first series as producer and showrunner.
    • The first series of the main show not to have the classics Britt Allcroft, David Mitton, Robert Gauld-Galliers, Mike O'Donnell, Junior Campbell, Phil Fehrle, Peter Urie, Jan Page, Brian Trueman, George Tarry, Jenny McDade, Polly Churchill, Robin Kingsland, Lee Pressman, Mike Erander, The Maidstone Studios and Gullane Entertainment involved in production after they stopped working on the main series. However, classic stock footage directed by David Mitton and produced by Gullane Entertainment was used through out the series up until Halloween and in the music videos of the series. Also, unlike the previous two series that used stock footage from episodes that were filmed in 4:3 fullscreen, the footage is instead stretched into widescreen instead of matted into widescreen. This also happens in the Jack and the Pack series.
      • Though in the seventh series, being the first series of the HiT era in the US country, had the stock footage used from the series before it classic in that country.
    • The first series in the US where all episode titles are the same as the UK.
    • Sam Barlow's first series as story executive.
    • Marc Seal's first series as a part of the writing team.
    • The first series to have Steve Asquith as a director since the sixth series and the first series of the main show entirely directed by Steve Asquith following David Mitton's retirement and the planned Jack and the Sodor Construction Company spin-off series (released two years later).
    • The first series to have music composed by Robert Hartshorne in the UK, since the seventh series in the US used music by Robert Hartshorne but the UK did not until 2004. This is also the first series that the music videos are scored by the music by Hartshorne.
    • The first series to have songs written by Ed Welch.
    • The first series to use the font, Sodor Bld, for title cards and credits. replacing the Rockwell letter font.
    • The first series in which Duck, Donald, Douglas, Oliver, Bill, Ben, Stepney (if stock footage counts), Fergus, Terence, the Skarloey Railway, the Post Van, Farmer Finney, Jenny Packard and Tom Tipper do not appear since their debuts, although Donald and Douglas were mentioned in one episode and they also appear in a deleted scene from another episode. Bill and Ben also appear in another deleted scene of yet another episode. Duck, Oliver, Rheneas and Rusty also made stock footage cameos in some songs. However, the likes of Duck, Rheneas and Oliver did appear in the various sixth and seventh series episodes aired alongside the new eighth and ninth series episodes on Nick Jr.
    • The first series to use a new opening and closing title, the Island of Sodor introduction sequence and Engine Roll Call as the theme. The original opening, however, is used in the Greek dub.
    • The first series shot using BetaCam videotape, as opposed to 35mm film.
    • The first series that established the Steam Team.
    • The first series to follow a stylised writing format which would remain in place until Series 17.
    • The first series to air on PBS outside of Shining Time Station.
    • The first series to air on American television in a half hour format since the fifth series on Fox Family's Storytime with Thomas.
    • The first series to have the crashes in slow motion.
    • The first series to use the term 'steamie' to describe the steam engine characters.
    • The first series to introduce non-Caucasian humans, as prior humans on the series were of the Caucasian race.
    • The first series to not introduce any non-human characters, excluding the Halloween Engine.
    • The first series dubbed in Croatian since the second series.
    • The first series dubbed in Brazilian Portuguese, German and Greek since the fifth series.
    • The first series dubbed in Norwegian since the sixth series.
    • The first series dubbed in European Spanish, Indonesian and Thai.
    • The first series to have all of its episodes dubbed in Latin American Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese.
    • The first series not dubbed in Welsh until the fifteenth series.
    • The first series aired by EBS English in South Korea.
    • The first series that VHS and DVD released on the same date by C4U Media in South Korea.
    • The first series that not released music video on VHS in South Korea.
    • The first series that not released on DVD in Italy.
    • The first series aired by TV4 since the second series in Sweden.
    • The first series aired by MiniMini in Poland.
    • The first series to feature Thomas' unused anxious face from the third series since the PC game, Trouble on the Tracks.
    • The first series where Murdoch appears, but does not speak.
    • The first series to feature Edward's unused drowsy face made in the third series and his unamused face that was made sometime prior or during the fourth series.
    • The first series to feature Thomas' upset face since the fourth series episode, Paint Pots and Queens.
    • The first series where Thomas does not speak in the finale.
    • The first series to feature Emily's unused annoyed face from the seventh series.
    • The first series to feature Spencer's unused laughing and sleeping faces from the seventh series.
    • The first series to feature 'Arry and Bert's unused cross face from the fifth series.
    • The first series since the fifth series where food items are transported in open wagons. According to Sam Barlow, this was done to visually reinforce the contents of rolling stock in order for young children to believe it.
    • The first series narrated by Kim Seung-jun in South Korea.
    • The first series described for visually impaired audiences on PBS.
    • The first series shot in 50fps (converted to 60fps for NTSC regions) or 25fps interlaced.
    • This series and the next series were never aired on television in Finland.
  • This was the last series of several things:
    • Abi Grant's second and last series as script editor.
    • The last series broadcast on CITV in the UK, as the channel would lose the license to Channel 5 in 2006.
    • The last series narrated by Leo Morimoto in Japan, as well as the last series to feature the original Japanese voice cast from Aoni Production. Starting from Calling All Engines!, there Would be a new Japanese voice cast.
    • The last series of the main show to feature stock footage directed by David Mitton before his death in 2008, thus also being the last series of the main show to use footage produced by Gullane Entertainment (as well as when it was originally known as The Britt Allcroft Company), although this later happens in Calling All Engines! and the Jack and the Sodor Construction Company spin-off series.
    • The last series to be completely released on VHS in the US.
    • The last series to see any VHS releases in the UK and Australia, despite incomplete.
    • The last series that released music video on DVD in South Korea.
    • The last series where the title cards are not read aloud by the narrator.
    • The last series to feature Tidmouth Sheds in its original form before its rebuild in Calling All Engines!.
    • The last series where Thomas' driver and fireman have speaking roles until the twenty-fourth series.
  • This was the only series of several things:
    • Paul Larson's only series as script editor.
    • The only series Dave Ingham and Robin Rigby were a part of the writing team (not counting Rigby's cancelled Jack and the Sodor Construction Company episodes).
    • The only series to use an extended version of the theme for the end credits.
    • The only series in the model era to not have any narrow gauge engines since their introductions in the fourth series. They were also absent in the thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth series.
    • The only series where Percy was given a new wincing face.
    • The only series where the Fat Controller appears in every episode except in Don't Tell Thomas.
    • The only series released music video on DVD by Adongmoonhak in South Korea.
    • The only time Harvey's wincing face was used, albeit in a deleted scene.
    • The only series where the episodes' title cards are not read aloud by the narrator in the Finnish Dub.
  • After PBS Kids started adding sponsers after Series 9 first aired, re-airings of Series 8 were edited to make room for them with a few seconds of a scene is cut off whenever the narrator stops for a bit in the Today on the Island of Sodor openings and Learning Segments. The music was also rearranged in the Today on the Island of Sodor opening.
  • The Korean DVDs credit Michael Angelis as the narrator, even though they were re-dubbed in their respective language.
  • In the Vietnamese dub, Michael Angelis' dub can be heard in the background as a dubbing track was not used.
  • In the first MiniMini airing of Squeak, Rattle and Roll, Michael Angelis' dub can be heard in the background as a dubbing track was not used. This was fixed and in later airings and DVD Michael Angelis' dub is not heard.
  • Unlike the UK and international dubs, the Japanese dub of this series has a different closing end sequence as it shows footage of the Welcome to the Island of Sodor introductory sequence at the start before using footage from the Engine Roll Call music video with the Engine Roll Call instrumental playing as the end credits theme.
  • In Finland, this series had been shown before the fifth, sixth and seventh series aired. meaning that the audience may not have known about who were Harvey, Arthur, Spencer, 'Arry, Bert, Salty, Elizabeth, Cranky and Murdoch.
  • This series contained the 200th episode of the television series which was As Good as Gordon.
  • A deleted scene from Squeak, Rattle and Roll suggests that Thomas would have appeared in the episode. Had he actually appeared, this would have been the first series where Thomas appears in every episode instead of the ninth series. Regardless of whether he would have spoken in the episode or not, the thirteenth series would still be the first series where Thomas speaks in every episode.
  • Mike O’Donnell and Junior Campbell had come up with music ideas for this series but HiT did not renew their contracts.
  • The Milkshake! reruns of this series aired from 16 to 28 October 2006.
  • This series and the previous series were shown in a CITV segment It's On at Quarter Past Three. This segment changed from the classic clock to a wooden one during this series. Additionally the first few minutes of CiTV were broken during its run of Edward the Great until the actual airing. The episodes were divided into sections of thirteen episodes per year, the first thirteen in January 2005 and the next thirteen in July 2006 ending the terrestrial broadcast apart from older series airing on the CITV Channel between 2006 and 2007.
  • CGI animation is used to create the scene of the map of the Island of Sodor in the introductory sequence.

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