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Series 22 of Thomas & Friends began airing on 17 September 2018 in the US.


Series 22 marked the first major reboot of the franchise since the show switched to full CGI in the thirteenth series. The episodes retained their eleven minute-long runtime, but were now broken into seven minute-long stories, with an additional four minutes reserved for a variety of segments like sing-along karaoke songs, music videos, or segments of Thomas talking directly with the audience about lessons learned during a particular episode. Among many other changes, Edward and Henry were removed from the Steam Team to make room for Nia and Rebecca. Toby was also quietly dropped, and the narrator was replaced with Thomas in a first person perspective. Despite this, Mark Moraghan has said that he will still work on the series. In School of Duck, he voiced an old coach named Dexter who was converted into a school classroom. Despite being removed from the main cast, the dropped Steam Team members will still appear and speak in future series and specials.

Series 22 is set after Big World! Big Adventures! The series is split into two halves: one half with Thomas travelling around the world, visiting China, India and Australia, and one half taking place on the Island of Sodor.




Characters Introduced




  • This series marks the first of several things:
    • The first series in which the United Nations and Mattel collaborate to introduce the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to preschool audiences throughout the show.[1]
    • The first series to use the new intro, credits and Set Friendship in Motion as an intro song.
    • The first series to feature the newly updated Engine Roll Call.
    • The first series to feature Thomas as the narrator. Because of this:
      • This is the first series since the sixteenth to have a different narrator in the US dubs, as well as the first since said series to not feature Mark Moraghan as the narrator.
      • This is the first production since Thomas and the Magic Railroad to have a first-person narrative.
    • The first series to feature the new Steam Team - Thomas, Gordon, James, Percy, Emily, Nia and Rebecca.
    • The first series not to have Edward, Henry and Toby as part of the main cast. However despite this, Edward speaks in every episode he appears in this series (not counting a stock footage cameo in Kangaroo Christmas) and Toby was also part of the Steam Team in the newly updated Engine Roll Call.
    • The first series since the eleventh to have Rosie speak in more than one episode.
    • The first series in which Dart appears, but without Den.
    • The first series in which Rasmus Hardiker and Matt Wilkinson voice Bill and Ben respectively, since Jonathan Broadbent's departure from the series.
    • The first series since the twelfth to have seven minute long story segments.
    • Flying Scotsman's first appearance in an episode since the third series and his first full appearance and speaking role in an episode.
    • Ashima, Rajiv, Shane, Yong Bao, Merlin, Nia, The Chinese Diesel, Shankar and Charubala's first appearances in an episode.
    • Rajiv, Shane, Shankar and Charubala's first speaking roles in the franchise.
    • Cyril the Fogman's first appearance in full CGI.
    • Vicarstown Sheds' first appearance in full CGI.
    • The first time the Aquarium Trucks appear in the CGI Series, as well as their first appearance in the series overall.
    • The first series to feature Learn with Thomas segments at the end of every episode.
    • The first series to have episodes written by Michael White and Tim Bain. It is also the first series to have episodes written by Becky Overton since the nineteenth series.
    • The first series not to receive any DVD releases in the United States.
    • The first series to use a fantasy sequence in every episode.
    • The first and currently only series in the Television Series to date in which Bertie does not appear (not counting a stock footage cameo in Seeing is Believing).
  • This is the only series for a few things:
  • This is the final series of a couple of things:
    • The last series to feature the remaining original members of the Steam Team, as well as Bulgy and Bertie without added details, which they gain in Series 23.
    • The last series to have Lee Pressman on the writing team.
    • The last series to have Micaela Winter as producer.
    • The last series where Thomas appears physically in all the episodes.
  • Although they did not appear in the main episodes and only appeared in the end segments, Donald, Douglas, Oliver, Connor, Caitlin, Timothy, Ryan, Iron 'Arry, Iron Bert, Den, Hugo, Rheneas, Sir Handel, Millie, Rusty, Bert, Rex, Mike, Toad, Bertie, Harold, Alfie, Oliver the Excavator, Max and Monty all appear in stock footage of several episodes:
    • Hugo makes a stock footage appearance in Forever and Ever.
    • Oliver, Toad, Alfie, Oliver the Excavator and the Ffarquhar Policeman make stock footage appearances in Trusty Trunky.
    • Ryan makes two stock footage cameos in Trusty Trunky and Kangaroo Christmas.
    • Rheneas, Sir Handel and Rusty make stock footage cameos in Tiger Trouble.
    • Bertie makes a stock footage cameo in Seeing is Believing.
    • Millie makes three stock footage appearances in The Water Wheel, Thomas and the Dragon and Rosie is Red.
    • Caitlin makes a stock footage appearance in Cyclone Thomas.
    • Connor, Bert, Rex, Mike and Harold make stock footage appearances in Kangaroo Christmas.
    • Timothy makes a stock footage appearance in The Case of the Puzzling Parts.
    • Iron 'Arry and Iron Bert make stock footage cameos in Banjo and the Bushfire.
    • Donald and Douglas make stock footage cameos in Counting on Nia.
    • Den makes two stock footage cameos in Counting on Nia and Hunt the Truck.
    • Max and Monty make stock footage appearances in Hunt the Truck.
  • Rufus Jones, Tina Desai and Hugh Bonneville return to the voice cast.
  • Nikhil Parmar, Siu-see Hung, Windson Liong, Sheena Bhattessa, Sanjeev Bhaskar, Rose Robinson, Genevieve McCarthy, Tim Bain, Tariro Mavondo, Shane Jacobson, Jass Patel, Jessica Hann, Charlie Barnard, Mia Hope Gaywood, Holly Hazelton, Innis Robertson-Pinnell and Damon Denton-Snape join the voice cast.
  • This series introduced a new sequence used at least once in almost every episode, featuring an engine backing up to the selected rolling stock and a close-up of their couplings being hooked, followed by a close-up of their whistle being blown (horns for diesels and a bell if they have one) before the start of the main plot.
  • Davey Moore wrote the most episodes in the total of nine episodes written, whilst Andrew Brenner and Michael White wrote only two episodes, making both write only two episodes each this series.
  • The mist surrounding the frame in the fantasy sequences is very similar to classic cartoon thought bubbles. Depending on who is having the fantasy, it is white for steam engines (and rolling stock) and black for diesels.
  • Emily is the only current Steam Team member to not get a starring role this series.
  • This is the third series where Henry and Toby only speak in two episodes.
  • Apart from Thomas reading the titles aloud and talking directly to the audience before and after the stories, Forever and Ever, What Rebecca Does and Apology Impossible are the only episodes this series to not feature narration.
  • China is the most featured foreign country this series, appearing in five episodes, while Australia and India were each featured in four episodes.
  • Yong Bao and Rajiv are the only returning characters from The Great Race to appear in every episode of the series set in their respective country. Ashima and Shane were only featured in three out of the four episodes for their respective countries.



External links

  • United Nations, Thomas & Friends Launch SDG Collaboration
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