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(Slate)   Thomas the Imperialist Tank Engine   (slate.com) divider line 139
    More: Obvious, Thomas the Tank Engine, Animal Farm, Bob the Builder, political ideology, tank engines, Sir Topham Hatt  
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10918 clicks; posted to Main » on 26 Jul 2011 at 5:08 PM (4 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



139 Comments   (+0 »)
   

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2011-07-26 05:02:03 PM  
i6.photobucket.com

/from an old FARK PS thread.
 
2011-07-26 05:09:48 PM  
I've never understood the appeal. WTF is the big deal about trains?
 
2011-07-26 05:11:31 PM  
Oh no! Our kids are being introduced to the idea that they ought to work hard!
 
2011-07-26 05:13:06 PM  
When I read the headline I thought it was going to be an article about Thomas Friedman.
 
2011-07-26 05:14:00 PM  
Well, there are 5 minutes I'll never get back...
 
2011-07-26 05:14:11 PM  
Oh Hai guyz! What's going on in this thread?

img.thesun.co.uk
 
2011-07-26 05:14:15 PM  
Working is now a negative attribute.

I think we're almost there, folks.
 
2011-07-26 05:14:23 PM  

bighasbeen: I've never understood the appeal. WTF is the big deal about trains?


Ringo Star
 
2011-07-26 05:14:25 PM  

bighasbeen: I've never understood the appeal. WTF is the big deal about trains?


I'm 3 years old and they are AWESOME. I don't get the big deal with boobs.
 
2011-07-26 05:14:47 PM  
I though Thomas was communist, due to his constant concern for being useful to the greater collective?
 
2011-07-26 05:15:03 PM  
Jessica Roake must be smoking some top-shelf herb.
 
2011-07-26 05:15:04 PM  
Soooo.... It's bad to teach your kids not to be lazy and actually do sine work for a change??? LOL!!
 
2011-07-26 05:15:42 PM  
FTA: "I'm overeducated and understimulated, with shelves full of long-ignored critical-theory books, trained in the reading of "texts" through Marxist, feminist, and postmodern perspectives."

The author has an extremely generous interpretation of what "overeducated" means, apparently.
 
2011-07-26 05:15:42 PM  
This is one of the dumbest things I have ever read.

My 3-year old LOVES Thomas. And Percy and James and Gordon and Bertie the Bus and Skarloey . . . We have several Thomas DVDs, and some of them are narrated by either George Carlin or Alec Baldwin. I've noticed that James can be a douche at times, but that's about as offensive as it ever gets.
 
2011-07-26 05:15:50 PM  

bighasbeen: I've never understood the appeal. WTF is the big deal about trains?


Good point. I don't know what it is, but I think they're sweet too. But there is no actual reason for it. But then why do I watch those Mega-Building documentaries? Only ceiling cat knows.
 
2011-07-26 05:17:11 PM  
I don't get it either. Everyone's kids (that I know) are farking obsessed with Thomas. One kid has his whole room decked out in it and he has all the toys and merch and wears a Thomas shirt almost every day.

What kind of mind ray is that show putting out?
 
2011-07-26 05:17:23 PM  
Sodor is a giant cult, and Sir Topham Hatt is their Jim Jones. He keeps pounding it into their heads to "be a really useful engine", to the point where they repeat it amongst themselves.

I'm surprised that he's not broke, though. Every engine of his has screwed up royally (most of them several times), causing thousands of dollars in damages. Even though he runs his railway by fear, he still lets them back on the rails to screw up again.
 
2011-07-26 05:18:35 PM  

nopokerface: Working is now a negative attribute.

I think we're almost there, folks.


When businesses think people should settle for less when business asks for more, people are not going to want to work.
 
2011-07-26 05:19:34 PM  

sethstorm: When businesses think people should settle for less when business asks for more, people are not going to want to work.


Ok.
 
2011-07-26 05:20:44 PM  

CheetahOlivetti: I've noticed that James can be a douche at times, but that's about as offensive as it ever gets.


There's a darker side. Did you notice that the other engines basically turned Diesel into an asshole by giving him bad info and hassling him when he first arrived?

JesseL: I though Thomas was communist, due to his constant concern for being useful to the greater collective?


It's a dictatorship. Sir Topham Hatt rules by fear!
 
2011-07-26 05:20:45 PM  

CheetahOlivetti: This is one of the dumbest things I have ever read.

 
2011-07-26 05:22:15 PM  
Slate has a bunch of talented writers and provocative headlines. But man, every actual article they publish is retarded.
 
2011-07-26 05:23:03 PM  
i176.photobucket.com
"The doddering fat bastard is talking to the trains again. But the last guy to tell him that the guy inside the train controls it got himself shaitcanned, so we'll just play it cool"
 
2011-07-26 05:23:45 PM  
The Smurfs were either Nazis, or Jews, depending on your viewpoint. Fraggles were hippies living in a LSD soaked commune. The Biskitts were a militaristic order enforcing feudalism while under attack from foreigners. Dogtanian and the Muskahounds was a subtle dig at Hollywood, showing them that it was possible to be true to a book. And Rocko's Modern Life was a parody of immigration and, well, modern life.
 
2011-07-26 05:23:51 PM  

Contrabulous Flabtraption: Slate has a bunch of talented writers and provocative headlines. But man, every actual article they publish is retarded.


I wonder how many clicks it's generated so far.
 
2011-07-26 05:23:55 PM  

crab66: CheetahOlivetti: This is one of the dumbest things I have ever read.

 
2011-07-26 05:24:14 PM  

JesseL: I though Thomas was communist, due to his constant concern for being useful to the greater collective?


No, not useful to the collective - useful to the boss. Sir Topham Hat is a real prick, the kind of guy who's all too happy to kick the worker to the curb. I was so glad that my kid's Thomas the Tank Engine phase was very, very short. I always thought it was poisoning his mind.
 
2011-07-26 05:24:49 PM  
The island of Sodor is an example of a libertarian laizzei faire [sic] paradise. There is no rail safety, the infrastructure is crumbling, and all that matters to the main man is productivity. If Amtrack had the safety record of the Island of Sodor, it would have gotten shut down long ago.
 
2011-07-26 05:25:42 PM  

bighasbeen: I've never understood the appeal. WTF is the big deal about trains?


img853.imageshack.us
 
2011-07-26 05:26:22 PM  
My son was obsessed with Thomas when he was 3, so I've seen and heard virtually every Thomas thing up until about 6 years ago.

The article is actually pretty much spot on, if a bit pedantic. The world of Thomas, *especially* the original books, is really pretty freaking harsh. Engines are who they are- you are never allowed to move up or get better. Fail Sir Topham Hatt and you're in serious trouble. Diesels are hated simply because they are diesels.

Not to mention the accident rate on the railway line would make me really hesitant to ever get on a train...
 
2011-07-26 05:27:20 PM  
I think Sodor is reminiscent of the Hitler Youth.
 
2011-07-26 05:28:07 PM  

IXI Jim IXI: ...I'm surprised that he's not broke, though. Every engine of his has screwed up royally (most of them several times), causing thousands of dollars in damages. Even though he runs his railway by fear, he still lets them back on the rails to screw up again.


AIG.
 
2011-07-26 05:28:20 PM  
I kinda see the writer's point, but it just comes across as Bizzaro World Breitbart.

Please imagine Alec Baldwin saying, "You're just a small green engine with ideas above your station!"

As Jack Donaghy it's actually quite easy.
 
2011-07-26 05:28:39 PM  

bighasbeen: I've never understood the appeal. WTF is the big deal about trains?


I watched Shining Time Station as a kid, which included the Thomas stuff, and loved it. But I think I just love miniatures, rather than trains. I think the newer ones may be CG, in which case fark that.

I really want to visit that Miniature Wonderland place in Germany. Looks awesome. The Museum of Science & Industry in Chicago has a really nice model train setup though...

/I even like Colleen Moore's Fairy Castle at MSI...
 
2011-07-26 05:29:32 PM  
i225.photobucket.com
All Aboard for Dachau, Auschwitz, and all camps in Eastern Sodor!
 
2011-07-26 05:31:11 PM  

HitokiriCraig: Soooo.... It's bad to teach your kids not to be lazy and actually do sine work for a change??? LOL!!


Boy, talk about COMPLETELY missing the point of the article.
 
2011-07-26 05:31:45 PM  
There's already a thread about this from last year. WTF.
 
2011-07-26 05:32:16 PM  
Don't forget sizeist - in the original stories, Sir Topham Hatt was known only as The Fat Controller.
 
2011-07-26 05:33:06 PM  

fusillade762: Please imagine Alec Baldwin saying, "You're just a small green engine with ideas above your station!"


Ahhhgggghhh! My son has that one on CD for the car.

The Baldwin ones and the Carlin ones are really good. The ones where Michael Brandon does all the voices, I could do without. Especially when he does Emily's voice. Frickin creepy...

"If yooouuu weren't such a slow-coach..."
 
2011-07-26 05:33:55 PM  

JNowe: Don't forget sizeist - in the original stories, Sir Topham Hatt was known only as The Fat Controller.


...but then he ate the Thin Controller, and earned a name.

Wow...he's practically a Kzin.
 
2011-07-26 05:37:24 PM  

bighasbeen: I've never understood the appeal. WTF is the big deal about trains?


I don't know, but...

My son got into them at 16 months and it's been all about them ever since. He could, and does on a really hot day like today, spend hours farting with them. He just loves those things and has figured out how to manipulate the tracks and the trains to do circles and figure eights and stuff. Anything that gives the little guy that much enjoyment is totally cool in my book. He even likes train games and videos. It's not all he does, but things that have a system like that is something he really likes.

And as for that article, that woman is a twat. Consider how many possible storylines you can get for children with trains? Not that many and that's why the original author stopped writing the things and sold the concept to a company. I also appreciate that Thomas is kind of a jerk sometimes. It makes it more realistic. This woman clearly has WAY too much time on her hands and needs to make me a sammich.
 
2011-07-26 05:37:36 PM  
People were making fun of this stuff 20 years ago.

Thomas the Tank Engine and the sex discrimination case (new window)
 
2011-07-26 05:37:42 PM  
That island has an abysmal safety record. If I were on Sodor, I wouldn't get on Annie or Clarabell if you paid me. Seems that half the time they end up in the ocean, and the other half derailed in a pile of gravel. And I don't care if Thomas learned his lesson this time or not, by this point, he should have learned it 100 times over. I mean hell, even George Carlin has read him the riot act, and if he won't listen to him, he's going to probably cause me serious injury. And don't even get me started on the shenanigans of the rescue squad, half the time the only helicopter on the island is either screwing around or delivering mail.
 
2011-07-26 05:38:47 PM  
My son, who is now 23, loved the original show back when he was 3 or 4. Back then, Ringo Starr was the narrator. It really held his attention without resorting to cheap, phony "edginess" so prevalent now (and then) in children's programming.

I am highly disturbed to learn that it is now a seizure-inducing CGI monstrosity. I'm sure all of the charm of the original series has been eradicated.
 
2011-07-26 05:40:02 PM  

EatHam: That island has an abysmal safety record. If I were on Sodor, I wouldn't get on Annie or Clarabell if you paid me. Seems that half the time they end up in the ocean, and the other half derailed in a pile of gravel.


And every time, "Luckily, no-one was injured..."

They need to get OSHA and the TSA and friggin' Ralph Nader over there NOW! It's a coverup, I tell ya.
 
2011-07-26 05:40:42 PM  

IXI Jim IXI: I'm surprised that he's not broke, though. Every engine of his has screwed up royally (most of them several times), causing thousands of dollars in damages. Even though he runs his railway by fear, he still lets them back on the rails to screw up again


So its like Amtrak then?
 
2011-07-26 05:41:23 PM  

IXI Jim IXI: EatHam: That island has an abysmal safety record. If I were on Sodor, I wouldn't get on Annie or Clarabell if you paid me. Seems that half the time they end up in the ocean, and the other half derailed in a pile of gravel.

And every time, "Luckily, no-one was injured..."

They need to get OSHA and the TSA and friggin' Ralph Nader over there NOW! It's a coverup, I tell ya.


Does Sir Topham Hatt use illegal aliens for labor?
 
2011-07-26 05:42:15 PM  

LemSkroob: So its like Amtrak then?


Amtrak's has a stellar record compared to the shenanigans over at the Sodor Railway.
 
2011-07-26 05:44:13 PM  

FirstNationalBastard: Does Sir Topham Hatt use illegal aliens for labor?


If he does, he keeps them well hidden. I haven't seen a mexican face on the show, even at Farmer McCole's...or at the Vicar's place. Of course, they're probably scared of that pedophile, Trevor.

"I love children"
 
2011-07-26 05:44:19 PM  
Still waiting for Sir Topham Hatt / Mrs. Kindly fanfic...
 
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