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- “Sharing your work makes things much easier, but sharing the fun is the best fun of all!”
- ―Thomas after sharing his load
Thomas and the Circus is the sixteenth episode of the eighth series.
The circus is coming to the Island of Sodor and all the engines are excited and want to take the circus train. Sir Topham Hatt gives Thomas the job to take the circus train and tells him to share the load with another engine if the train gets too heavy. When Thomas leaves, James and Percy are hoping to pull the circus with Thomas soon.
When Thomas arrives at the docks, he is amazed by all the circus trucks he can see. When Thomas backs up to Annie and Clarabel, Salty rolls up and asks Thomas if he wants him to help. Even though Thomas knows the train is heavy and what Sir Topham Hatt said, he wants to pull the train by himself and keep the glory to himself. Thomas puffs along the countryside and is having so much fun as the people at the station cheer for him. Thomas stops by a bridge where Percy is waiting and some children wave to Thomas. Percy asks Thomas if he needs help, but Thomas says no as he wants to have the fun to himself and puffs on leaving a disappointed Percy.
But Thomas starts to get tired as he notices how heavy the train is. Thomas then sees James, who offers to help, but Thomas still wants to pull it on his own. Soon Thomas isn't having fun anymore pulling the train by himself and it gets worse when Thomas' side rods break from the strain of pulling the heavy train and forcing him to stop.
While the driver calls for help, the performers try to cheer Thomas up by practicing, but he doesn't cheer up a bit. Percy and James arrive with hay for the horses and Thomas' new side rods. Thomas says to them that he wished he asked them to share the train with them. Percy and James agree to help Thomas so that they can have fun together and they both watch the performers while Thomas is is fitted with his new siderods. Percy and James are coupled up and they help Thomas with the train. While they watch the circus tent being put up, Thomas thanks his friends and admits that sharing the fun is the best fun of all.
- Sir Topham Hatt
- Annie and Clarabel (do not speak)
- Cranky (does not speak)
- Kuffy the Clown (not named; does not speak)
- Edward (cameo)
- Henry (cameo)
- Gordon (cameo)
- Emily (cameo)
- Caroline (cameo)
- Big Mickey (cameo)
- Stephen Hatt (cameo)
- Bridget Hatt (cameo)
- Refreshment Lady (cameo)
- Sodor Brass Band (cameo)
- Toad (faceless; cameo)
- Tidmouth Sheds
- Brendam Docks
- Sodor Shipping Company
- Kirk Ronan Junction
- Gordon's Hill
- The Windmill
- The School
- Elsbridge (cut)
- Stock footage from Percy's Big Mistake is used.
- Going by production order, this is the fourteenth episode of the eighth series.
- This episode marks Caroline's first appearance since the fifth series episode, Toby's Discovery.
- A faceless Toad model is the brake van for Thomas' train.
- A wire is visible underneath Thomas when he is repaired and puffs away.
- The sound of Thomas' traction rods breaking happens long before they do on screen.
- When James is pushing the brake van, he is pushing it slightly up off the rails.
- Bridget and Stephen Hatt are seen as two of the children on the bridge waving to Thomas, but they were just seen at Maron station in the previous scene.
- In the overhead shot of Thomas passing through Maron, the line ahead is leading to bushes.
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