This is a sneak peek review of the children’s DVD “Thomas & Friends: Trouble on the Tracks,” the latest video release starring the characters on the Island of Sodor. I was provided a review copy in advance of the release date (April 8, 2014) by Lionsgate and HiT Entertainment though they didn’t have any influence on my observations.
The Island of Sodor sees more antics and mayhem
First, in “Thomas the Quarry Engine,” the tank engine has to help out in the quarry where he encounters some bratty railroad quarry cars (“trucks”) that won’t cooperate, while the regular quarry engine Mavis is preoccupied elsewhere. In “Not So Slow Coaches,” the passenger cars Annie and Clarabel gripe to Thomas about being transported too fast or too slow, so he teases them and allows them to be transported by other engines who don’t please the two cars either. In “Flatbeds of Fear,” After Salty conveys a story about some flatbed cars who lose their engine and then go around like ghosts looking for other engines to hook up with, the engines do their jobs in fear of every strange sound they hear.
The fourth episode in “Thomas & Friends: Trouble on the Tracks” is called “Disappearing Diesels,” which sees Diesel and his other fellow diesels pull a mean practical joke on the gullible, but friendly Paxton, but the antics only end up causing confusion and mayhem. Finally, in “Toad’s Adventure,” the small brake van Toad is tired of hearing about his mate Oliver bragging about his daring escapades, so he goes about looking for some glory of his own, and gets more than he bargained for.
The bonus features in this DVD include “The Earl’s Quiz,” where the Earl of Sodor plays a memory game with viewers. Some “Guess Who?” puzzles are included, too. In continuous play mode, Sir Topham Hatt discusses various engines and Engine Driver Perkins answers fan mail and reads a story between episodes.
Fans of “Thomas & Friends” won’t be disappointed with this latest release as the storylines continue to be made with the usual quality that viewers have come to expect with the top-rate graphics and action-packed plots. Over the course of about an hour, children will learn how practical jokes can hurt people, to not be a complainer, and to not let wild tales get the best of them.
“Thomas & Friends: Trouble on the Tracks” can be heard in English, French, and Spanish and has a Suggested Retail Price of $14.98. It has a running time of about 57 minutes. For more information on this series, go to the website here