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- “Well done Thomas. You have saved the day. You are a Really Useful Engine and a credit to the railway.”
- ―Sir Topham Hatt
Thomas to the Rescue is the third episode of the eighth series.
The Fat Controller sends Thomas to work with Mavis at the quarry, which has an important order to fill. When Thomas arrives at the quarry, he is shocked to discover that Diesel is working there as well. Diesel is not pleased to see Thomas, who tells Diesel that he has come to help Mavis. Diesel tells Thomas that steam engines cannot help as much as diesel engines. Thomas scoffs at Diesel's insult and sets to work at once. However, Diesel is up to causing mischief and he pushes Thomas underneath the hopper, covering him in gravel. Diesel teases Thomas and even claims that the Fat Controller is planning to scrap steam engines. Thomas refuses to believe Diesel, but he cannot help worrying about what he said in the shed that night.
The next morning, Salty delivers fresh diesel fuel from the Mainland. Diesel and Mavis are quickly filled up and Diesel boasts that the fresh diesel fuel makes his axles tingle. Then, just as Diesel rolls away to work, his engine coughs, splutters and stops amid clouds of smoke billowing from his exhaust. Diesel feels sick, as does Mavis, who is coughing out smoke from her exhaust. The Quarry Manager realises that the new diesel fuel has been contaminated with water. It is not long before 'Arry, Bert and Salty break down too.
Having heard the news, the Fat Controller orders the Quarry Manager to send Thomas to collect some clean diesel fuel. Thomas sets off for the fuel depot and the workmen fill up two flatbeds with diesel fuel drums. Despite the heavy load, Thomas sets off and delivers the clean fuel to Salty, 'Arry and Bert and then he makes his final delivery at the quarry where all work has just stopped. The contaminated fuel is drained out of Diesel and Mavis' tanks and they are refilled with the clean fuel. Mavis thanks Thomas and after the important order has been filled, the Fat Controller arrives aboard Percy to congratulate Thomas for being Really Useful and a credit to the railway; even Diesel has to agree with that.
- Sir Topham Hatt
- Anopha Quarry Manager
- Percy (does not speak)
- 'Arry and Bert (do not speak)
- Gordon (cameo)
- James (cameo)
- Cranky (cameo)
- Big Mickey (faceless, cameo)
- Bill and Ben (deleted scene)
- Brendam Docks
- Tidmouth Sheds
- Mavis' Shed
- Centre Island Quarry
- Henry's Tunnel
- The Scrapyards
- Sir Topham Hatt's Office
- The Fuel Depot
- Shunting Yards
- Going by production order, this is the twenty-fourth episode of the eighth series.
- In the original storyboards, Bill and Ben were meant to have a major role in this episode. In the Steamie Stumpers Quiz on Steamies vs. Diesels and Other Thomas Adventures, it is revealed that Bill and Ben were to go in because they need repairs, and that was why Sir Topham Hatt sent Thomas to the quarry. A deleted scene featuring Bill and Ben was shown in Calling All Engines!
- In a deleted scene, 'Arry and Bert are smiling when Thomas delivers the clean diesel fuel.
- This episode may have been rewritten from the cancelled Jack and the Sodor Construction Company episode, Pop Goes the Diesel.
- Gordon has Duck's whistle sound which he uses between the fourth-fifth series.
- This episode is the first of several things:
- The first episode to have Paul Larson co-write with another writer.
- The very first time that steam engines are addressed as "steamies," which would become used more often in following seasons.
- The first time that the Diesels were being put out of action, the second being Steam Team to the Rescue.
- The first episode where Diesel is shown sad.
- When Thomas imagines if Sir Topham Hatt scraps all the steam engines, the scrapped engines appear to be the models of City of Truro, Donald and Douglas.
- In the opening shot, Percy's steam platform is visible.
- Salty is missing his rear lamp in the first shot at the docks and a hole is visible where it should be.
- Right before the quarry manager talks to Thomas, his whistle is severely tilted.
- Mavis has a male voice in the Finnish dub.
Thomas: (stating his opinion) "Coal doesn't make my axles tangle. I wish I could have fresh fuel."
- Take Along (discontinued)
- Books - Thomas Rescues the Diesels
- Magazine Stories - Pop Goes the Diesel, Engine Trouble and Thomas Saves the Day
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