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- “Bust my Buffers! No wonder they all laughed. I'm just like a Woolly Bear.”
Woolly Bear is the twenty-fifth episode of the second series.
In summer, long hay grows beside the line and gangers cut it and rake it into heaps to dry in the sun. Percy then collects the hay in empty trucks and takes them to the station. There, Toby collects the trucks and takes them into the hills for farmers to feed their animals.
One day, Percy arrives at the station and starts to tease Thomas for thinking he was a ghost. Thomas retorts that Percy is a "green caterpillar with red stripes", which makes Percy angry. Thomas then reminds Percy that he has been late at the station every afternoon that week. Percy tells Thomas that it is the hay that is making him late, but Thomas is not interested in Percy's excuses and leaves.
Percy grumbles to himself all that afternoon that he is only ever late by a few minutes, but nevertheless he and his driver decide to head to the station early and go to the harbour to drop off some trucks. At the harbour however, there is trouble; a loose crate of treacle hanging over Percy drops and splatters all over him. The workmen at the harbour try to clean him up, but Percy has to leave and is still very sticky when he does.
Soon Percy comes to the hill where the hay is laying and by now it is very windy. The hay is blown over the track and Percy. Because Percy's wheels slip on the slippery hay he must wait for the line to be cleared. While he does so, the wind blows some of the hay onto Percy, where it clings to his sticky boiler.
At the station, Thomas waits angrily for a late Percy. Suddenly, all the passengers start laughing when Percy arrives as he is now completely covered with hay, making him quite a sight. Thomas laughs that the "caterpillar has crawled out of the hay". Percy does not know what Thomas is talking about, but Thomas tells him that seeing Percy like this is worth being late.
Percy runs back to the shed where his driver shows him what he looks like in a mirror. Now Percy knows what everyone was laughing at, stating that he looks like a woolly bear and asks to be cleaned before Toby arrives, not knowing that Thomas has already told Toby everything.
In the end, it does not matter as by the time Toby and Thomas arrive, Percy is still a long way from being cleaned causing the two to make jokes about woolly bear caterpillars. Percy does not find these jokes very funny at all.
- Toby (does not speak)
- Annie and Clarabel (cameo)
- Jem Cole (cameo)
- One Little Boy (cameo)
- One Naughty Boy (cameo)
- Sir Topham Hatt (mentioned)
- Knapford Harbour
- Suddery Castle
- Ffarquhar Sheds
- The Ffarquhar Stationmaster's House
- The Hay Fields
- This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, Tramway Engines.
- Going by episode order, this is the last episode to be re-narrated by Ringo Starr for the US release, and the last (known) episode to be narrated by Simcha Barbiro in Israel.
- Ringo Starr's US narration of this episode has been broadcast on Shining Time Station, but was never released on home video, though the audio appears on audio cassettes/CDs included with some releases of the Diesel's Devious Deed and Other Thomas the Tank Engine Stories picture book.
- Toby gains an extra truck and a different brake van while puffing through the valley.
- Percy's brake van disappears as he enters the harbour.
- Look at Percy when the treacle lands on him to see the reflection of the studio.
- The narrator says that "Percy was cross", but he had his sad face mask on.
- In the close-up of Percy's wheels struggling in the hay, a gear is seen behind one of them.
- When Percy looks in the mirror, studio equipment is visible in the top-left corner.
- The narrator said that Thomas was laughing when he saw Percy, but Thomas looks somewhat disgusted.
- In the restored version, when Thomas and Toby back into the shed, Toby stops slightly outside of the shed. But in the next scene, he is further in.
- In a rare still from the episode, Percy's eyes are wonky as he pulls his train.
- Throughout the episode, Percy's left (viewer's right) cylinder is dangling and wobbling.
- Thomas' eyes are wonky when Percy says: "Green caterpillar, indeed!".
- In the re-dubbed Norwegian narration, the first few seconds of the audio of Thomas and the Missing Christmas Tree are played at the beginning. Then the audio cuts off and switches over to the music from Woolly Bear. The same thing happens in the re-dubbed Swedish narration, presumably because the dubbing track is reused.
- At Elsbridge, Thomas' headlamp is missing part of its bottom and is slightly facing a different direction.
- Buzz Books - Woolly Bear
- Magazine stories - Woolly Bear
- Ladybird Books - Daisy & Percy's Predicament & Woolly Bear
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