Thursday, 24 September 2015

S19 Ep.4: Henry Spots Trouble


Written by
Davey Moore

Directed by
Don Spencer

Produced by
Ian McCue (HIT)

Air Date:

Stephen and Bridget, the Fat Controller's grandchildren, were covered in chicken pox! Henry started to worry if engines can get them too!

- Moral: Don't be afraid of the unknown 
- The silent moment with the painter
- The Fat Controller feeling robust
- Henry's worrisome attitude can be relatable, thanks to this episode 

- Why would Stephen and Bridget be outside?

At first I hated this episode when it was on the Wal*Mart exclusive DVD 'Whale of a Tale'. But now looking back at it, it does portray a good moral to the young audience about fearing the unknown. Sure many of the older fans don't like Henry's worrisome behaviour since the Sam Barlow era but the worrisome behaviour works well with an episode like this. Some young children are afraid of chicken pox as they can get them easily, although I don't know why Stephen and Bridget go outside when Chicken pox can be contagious, especially towards older people who hadn't got them when they were young. Back to Henry, the young audience can be relatable to Henry in this episode because it can happen in real life. Sure there's the book 'Henry Goes to The Hospital' and that was written by Christopher Awdry. But the book could be considered as non-canon as it was never referenced in the Railway Series nor the television series. Sure older fans don't like it but while we're in mind of the writers, they have to think of the younger audience as well and besides Henry being arrogant and vain doesn't feel original, yes I said it! And it feels more like Gordon, James, Samson and Cranky morphed together and besides Henry feared of seeing an elephant in a tunnel and the rain, even if the fear wasn't to the max as in this episode it shows he can have fear over certain things. Sure there's the quote, 'Chicken poxs are more scarier then the rain!' at first I thought it ruined continuity of 'The Adventure Begins' but now I see it as Henry comparing his old fear to the fear he had now. Besides would you want Henry to be worried about something that kids can find relatable or over a box of Christmas trees? I think there would've been better character choices such as Percy or Paxton, though the latter would make it 'Disappearing Diesels' again. Henry is not a worrier all the time as well. In episodes such as 'Bill or Ben?' and 'Signals Crossed', he scolds at an engine for missing his signal and he did show some vanity in 'Scruff's Makeover'. 

There are some good moments though in the episode such as the painter and Gordon's silent moment it was a clever addition and I love that the Fat Controller was feeling robust too and also the little addition of Henry's sad theme, recreated by Hartshorne. I do hope we hear some of the revamped classic themes in future but I would like to see more of Hartshorne's original work. In the end, I find it as a good episode now but maybe not the best and Henry being a worrier sometimes can be a good thing as it can be a unique trait. 

Rating: 7/10

Episode Rating:
Henry Spots Trouble - 7/10

Series Rating (So Far):

Well that's all the S19 episodes so far...I will say it's rather poor of Channel 5, the national broadcaster for Thomas & Friends in the UK, just giving us four episodes so far with 14, according to an email sent to SteamTeam3211, with no broadcast date at the moment with no reason why:

I don't know when Australia will air them, but I do hope ABC airs most of them. Well we will have to await for Channel 5 to broadcast more episodes from the recent series. Be sure to check out my review for the 2015 special tomorrow!