Apologies for leaving this late; and according to one youtube viewer; it seems ITV have been paying attention to my spec videos on each Thunderbird in Before the Storm.
While it's pleasing at the notion that ITV Studios may have noticed me; I think it's more of a case of coincidence.
I didn't want to into an ubber long lengthy review, just felt like keeping it as brief, constructive and as honest as possible.
And I think I did that.
Thunderbirds Are Go
It just goes to show that it's not always as easy as it seems to perform a rescue; sometimes there are setbacks.
As is the case here with Scott attempting to pull the Jet out of the dive but ultimately gets Thunderbird 1 pulled down with it.
I think if International Rescue got the job done every single time without any complications, there wouldn't be that sense of tension and danger that is necessary for a suspenseful series.
One aspect that has come into play with this Generation is that like this series incarnation of John Tracy; Thunderbird 1 is playing more of a role in helping a rescue as opposed to just being a recon vehicle and relaying information back to Thunderbird 5 and base and advising his Brothers on what course of action to make. Basically, this Scott does get his fingers dirty more often.
The only thing that the 60's Thunderbird 1 has over this is that that version had more equipment from sonar that could be lowered into the water from the ship, a remote control camera that go into environments of different shape and size that TB1 couldn't and that steel graph poles that were used in the End of the road preventing more rocks from hitting the tractor that Eddie Houseman was in.
This version just seems to use the grappling hook and can be remote piloted by Scott's holo-wrist control.
Now one could argue that I'm reading too deeply into this and that more features and equipment from IR's recon vessel will follow in future episodes.
This Preview really doesn't show much other than Thunderbird 1 and it's rescuee in jeopardy. But all will be revealed on Saturday
I get the impression that the Ned character has a death-wish as this is the second time that International Rescue are coming to get him out of trouble. As if he wasn't annoying enough from slingshot with his whining and condescending tone, it now looks as though that Gordon picked the short straw in rescuing him. I really hope that this is not going to become a "thing" in this series. That'd be on par with the amount of times the show has taken shots at Grandma Tracy's cooking.
What I took away from this preview is that Thunderbird 4 will be getting some much needed screen-time since she has not been used sin the Ring of Fire.
The little to no action that IR's mini-sub has received is almost akin to the relegation of action that John received in the original series. Which is a shame as the 2015 incarnation of Thunderbird 4 showed a lot of potential for the underwater rescues it could perform with the features of rescue pods and grappling arms from it's main body.
I like the Easter Egg nod to the Crab-logger from Path of Destruction. I find it interesting that a toxic-waste transporter would "drive" on the seabed. I don't know the specifics as to how that would be achieved so I'll just leave that be.
In recent episodes the writers have been able to take the suspense factor to a point where the team have to had to use a new approach to successfully complete a rescue that you don't know if each use will work.
Take last week's Skyhook for example where we thought that Thunderbird 2 would be able to complete it but had to withdraw due to the lack of electrical dampers on the weather station, which then followed with Thunderbirds 1 & 3 respectively attempting rescues and ultimately failing due to Langstrom cutting corners that it was left up to Thunderbird 5 to act as a rescue craft, which might I add, had never been done in the original series.
If the show can knock it out of the park again with Under Pressure then it just shows the consistency that has been put into the writing and production of this Generation.
"Well "bully" for you then - Parker. after the Professor got over the closing wall in the Pryamid
Although this episode aired last Sunday May 24, 2015; it's still good to see that it will be re-run this Saturday.
What I found very rewarding is the character-dynamics that were explored and expanded when you have 3 principal characters stuck in a situation where they butt heads when they criticise/almost insult each other.
What I did not mention in my review from last week is that the Archeological Professor was voiced by Matt Zimmerman himself. The original Alan Tracy.
Funny thing that was pointed out by some fans is that the rendering for the professor looked like the original Alan if he had aged to that point.
While the use of the Thunderbirds themselves were a little restricted compared to previous episodes, it was more important that the characters were allowed to grow. The Tracys and their associates make Thunderbirds & International Rescue, not vice versa.
While Parker and Penelope provided some light-hearted humour in the original it was never to the extent where Parker could be this expressive and complain like most people that are scared to go to places they are not familiar with. Also, you have to enjoy his cynical and sarcastic nature as he's just saying what we're all thinking.
That is one of the key aspects that is making this Generation work; humour. Not in the sense that it's just out-right comedy. It's more on the lines of that it's comedy where it's needed just to take some of the tension of the moment.
This series keeps getting better
If my suspicions weren't close enough that this would be a soft-remake of SunProbe then this Preview all but confirms it.
The story of a mining core hurtling toward the sun is pretty copypasta from the original series about a scientific mission for a probe to go through a flare in the sun and collect material from said area to study back on Earth.
Which by the synopsis for this episode is just a modernised version.
This will also place a lot of pressure on International Rescue's youngest member. While is an exceedingly gifted pilot, the viewer has to remember that he is 16 years young.
But this is nothing new for Alan Tracy. Even in the original series he had to face situations before where we had to think and act maturely in order to complete a mission or to keep a cool in head dire situations. One Move and you're dead is such an example where his endurance was tested for a whole episode where he had to limit his physical movements so that the ultra-sonic generator would not cause the bomb to go off early on the bridge in San Miguel.
Also this will be the second episode this Season thus far that will primarily focus on him and Thunderbird 3 as Space Race entailed Alan having to keep a dormant space mine occupied whilst a kill-code was sought after from stopping it explode near civilian space-craft and a space station.
Those that remember the original episode will recall that this was the one of the few episodes that gave Tin-Tin the platform to show what she was capable of doing and that she could do the job as well as the Brothers.
Fast-Forward some 50 years and Kayo is in the same position heading into Space to aid in the rescue of the mining core from crashing into the Sun.
And this is what I like about Kayo; she is doing more of what Tin-Tin could have done. In theory it is the same character, but a name change for obvious copyright reasons; which to this day I'm a little surprised that the estate that owns the rights to Herge's Adventures of Tin-Tin have an issue with this Generation's in Thunderbirds and not the incarnation from the previous.
I'm sure this episode will be a 'hot-topic' this Saturday.
It looks like another homage to an episode from the original series will be the episode for next Saturday.
Sunprobe was a hair-raising experience in the previous Generation and there was so much tension it was almost uncomfortable.
With Probe heading straight for the sun due to a failure with the ship's close distance to the sun it required International Rescue with a two-pronged Rescue attempt with Tin-Tin (now Kayo), Scott & Alan racing through space in Thunderbird 3 with Brains & Virgil making an attempt from Earth on Mount Arkan (which I'm guessing was meant to be a mountain taller than Everest) with the Satellite Truck.
This time around sees a mining core on an asteroid whose direction goes deadly off-course requiring Kayo & Alan in Thunderbird 3 to head into deep space to avert a deadly crisis from happening.
It seems promising from the out-set. And it's taking a previous concept but tweaking it enough for the new age.
The AI talks about self-preservation, which is where the Knight Rider reference comes in.
In the original 1982 series (which I refer to as KRG1) KARR, the Knight Automative Roving Robot was Wilton Knight's prototype but there was a major problem with his programming; he was programmed for only self-preservation unlike the original KITT, the Knight Industries Two Thousand which has Isaac Asimov's three laws of robotics programmed in and he was programmed with the preservation of Human Life as his prime directive.
I will find it amusing if EOS utters:
We create our demons - Tony Stark
This Conversation is non-productive - Peter Cullen as KARR. Knight Rider G1 Season 1: Trust Doesn't Rust
What I like that they are setting us for this Saturday is that John is essentially responsible for his own doing/misgivings.
It's like Tony Stark said in Iron Man 3
Now, I am not trying to compare John Tracy with a Genius, Playboy, Billionaire, Philanthropist; but the comparison is fair that he has opened a Pandora's box with EOS who essentially becomes Thunderbird 5 in rendering John helpless as he's cut off from his Brothers whom have no idea that the person that is communicating with them via the Holo-com is not their Brother.
That said; it stands to reason that Artificial Intelligence would have reached a point where it would be to create computer-generated forgery of someone to dispel suspicion along with replicating their voice. Considering the type of tech that the 2060 the characters exist in with everything being as advanced as it is from Brains' robot, Max, to the vehicles and technology that is there for International Rescue and everything from Hospitals and commercial transportation.
It's also another reminder of what happens if Artificial Intelligence is allowed to become too self-aware and intelligent enough to become self-preserving and sees humanity as a threat.
You'd need only look at the recent Avengers: Age of Ultron story where he turns against his creators after spending 30 minutes on the Internet looking up the history of War on Earth or to when Sky-Net became Self-aware in 2003's Terminator: Rise of the Machines.
The idea is nothing new, but it is something that makes people think of what could happen if AI did decide that the best way to deal with the problem humanity has to eliminate it.
I grant, that's a very deep philosophical thought regarding this week's episode on Thunderbirds Are Go, but it's one that won't go away anytime soon.
So we have Thunderbirds meets Space Odyssey 2001 with a little bit of Knight Rider as John is to battle his intellect and wits with EOS; an Artificial Intelligence Program that has evolved from computing code he originally wrote.
Space Odyssey 2001 for the reference to HAL with the light optical interface which the lights turn red at the end of the preview.
Covering the 1st Thunderbird Series in 50 years with the Build up 'Before the Storm' and After the Storm.