I love Thunderbirds, in fact, I love pretty much everything that Gerry and Sylvia Anderson ever did. But even more than their classic stuff, I’ve liked the updated material, like the 2005 New Captain Scarlet too. Now that Gerry has died and his ex-wife is running his affairs, I was a little hesitant about this newly minted version of the classic Thunderbirds, but I had no need to be worried because this is absolutely fantastic.In the year 2060, the series follows International Rescue, operated by the Tracy family, which can come to your aid no matter where peril finds you. The futuristic rescue vehicles, codenamed Thunderbirds, launch from Tracy Island, where the Tracy Brothers, along with their grandmother, tech head Brains, security agent Kayo and operatives Lady Penelope and Parker, risk their lives to save the lives of others.
The original series, made between 1964-1966, featured Supermarionation, a form of electronic puppetry, and ran for 32 episodes. But today, it’s not puppets on strings, it’s CGI, done by WETA, and it looks absolutely amazing. It still maintains a lot of the puppetry sensibilities and look but it’s a lot more fluid and the effects are phenomenal, especially for a UK kid’s show.
But even though this is a kid’s show, with the requisite lack of violence and bloodshed and other forbidden subjects, it still has plenty to keep adults entertained. The writing is excellent, the voice actors are always believable and there are plenty of references to the original series sprinkled in that long time fans will always have something to enjoy.
And if you want to see a perfect storm, the season finale brings it all together amazingly well. There’s a slight shift in the last couple of episodes from International Rescue being only concerned with people to being concerned with doing the right thing. That’s a trend I hope to see again when the series comes back in late 2016. And for those who have no other way to see it, Amazon Prime has just picked up the series in the U.S. Get thee to your TV and see this show, I guarantee you won’t regret it. I can’t wait until it comes back. Thunderbirds are GO!