Wednesday, 7 September 2016

S20 Ep.3: Henry Gets The Express


Written by
Helen Farrall 

Directed by
Dianna Basso

Produced by
Ian McCue (HIT)
Robert Anderson (Arc)

Air Date:

When Gordon is late, the Fat Controller asks Henry to pull the Express. Despite his misgivings, he is a huge success. Meanwhile, Gordon is not happy that he has to take over Henry's work, which he thinks is beneath him, and decides to go on strike.

- Henry's characterisation
- A nice throwback to 'Edward and Gordon'
- John Hasler's Rheneas
Moral: You must do as you're told

- A missed opportunity for Bill and Ben interacting with Gordon
- Why not make Henry's express duties alongside Gordon permanent?
- Maybe the episode could've been another two parter.

Even though I've enjoyed 'Henry Spots Trouble' because of its relatable storyline to the target audience, preschoolers, about chicken pox despite him being a worrier and 'The Beast of Sodor' while the same as the former it did have a great moment of Henry standing up against the abominable snowman which turns out to be the Fat Controller. This episode in my opinion is, so far, probably one of the best episodes we had this season. Helen Farrall was absolutely spot on with Henry's original persona, while although I said his vanity and pompous attitude is the same as James and Gordon, I think him being the friendly giant is one of the best traits they gave him in the TV series despite they gave that to Hiro and Murdoch. 

The dynamic between Henry and Gordon is amazing and it has the classic series or Railway Series vibe since the two big engines work so well together. I also like that Henry manipulates Gordon about the Flying Kipper, just a funny moment and it did provide a good moral about that you must do as you are told when it comes to say like a parent or guardian. 

I will say though that I think it was a missed opportunity for Bill and Ben to interact with Gordon and tease him about pulling trucks it would've had that 'Wrong Road' feeling towards it despite how small it would've been. But I'm not that worried or peeved off about it. In the end, this was a great episode.

I will also say why not have the Fat Controller rearrange the timetable to let Henry work alongside Gordon to pull the express, be a good thing to see throughout the series. A bit like the Fat Controller saying in 'Thomas Gets Bumped' that he'll rearrange the timetable so that he and Bertie can work together more.

I think maybe this episode could've worked maybe as another two parter, like 'Diesel's Ghostly Christmas'. Have this episode focus on Henry and the express and the next one focusing on Gordon and trucks and his strike. Gordon's strike was more of a fit he was pulling like a bratty child but maybe the blame would have to be the episode description from Channel 5.

Also this is John Hasler's first episode as the new voice of Rheneas since Ben Small left the show. I think his new voice is great and while it is different it does manage to be a bit like Hasler's counterpart. I love it!  

Episode Ratings:
Sidney Sings - 8/10
Toby's New Friend - 7/10
Henry Gets the Express - 10/10

Overall Rating: