Thunderbirds Box Set (9 discs) [DVD] [1965]: Peter Dyneley, Shane Rimmer, David Graham, Ray Barrett, Christine Finn, Matt Zimmerman, David Holliday, Sylvia Anderson, John Tate, Jeremy Wilkin, Charles 'Bud' Tingwell, John Read, Gerry Anderson: Film & TV

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Thunderbirds Box Set (9 discs) [DVD] [1965]

Peter Dyneley , Shane Rimmer    Universal, suitable for all   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (169 customer reviews)
Price: £39.99 & this item Delivered FREE in the UK with Super Saver Delivery. See details and conditions
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Thunderbirds Box Set (9 discs) [DVD] [1965] + Captain Scarlet - Complete Series Box Set [DVD] [1967]
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Product details

  • Actors: Peter Dyneley, Shane Rimmer, David Graham, Ray Barrett, Christine Finn
  • Writers: Sylvia Anderson, Gerry Anderson
  • Format: Box set, Full Screen, Limited Edition, PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 9
  • Classification: U
  • Studio: Carlton Visual Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 13 Nov 2000
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (169 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004YAAY
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 28,432 in Film & TV (See Top 100 in Film & TV)



"Filmed in VIDECOLOR [explosions, drum roll, music builds to a climax] and SUPERMARIONATION"! The opening sequence of Thunderbirds is itself a masterclass in Gerry Anderson's marionette hyperbole: who else would dare to make a virtue out of the fact that (a) the show is in colour and (b) it's got puppets in it? But everything about this series really is epic: Thunderbirds is action on the grandest scale, pre-dating such high-concept Hollywood vehicles as Armaggedon by 30 years and more (the acting is better, too), and fetishising gadgets in a way that even the most excessive Bond movies could never hope to rival. Unsurprisingly, it transpires that the visual effects are by Derek Meddings, whose later contributions to Bond movies like The Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker echo his pioneering model work here.

As to the characters, the clean-cut Tracey boys take second place in the audiences' affections to their cool machines--the real stars of the show--while comic relief is to be found in the charming company of Lady Penelope and her pink Rolls (number plate FAB1), driven by lugubrious chauffeur Parker, whose "Yes, milady" catch phrase resonated around school playgrounds for decades. (Spare a thought for poor old John Tracey, stuck up in space on Thunderbird 5 with only the radio for company.) The puppet stunt-work is breathtakingly audacious, and every week's death-defying escapade is nail-bitingly choreographed in the very best tradition of disaster movies. First shown in 1964 and now digitally remastered, Thunderbirds is children's TV that still looks and sounds like big-budget Hollywood.

In this box set: All 32 episodes on eight discs, plus a bonus DVD featuring "The Thunderbirds Companion", an exclusive documentary with interviews and behind-the-scenes footage. --Mark Walker

Product Description

All thirty-two episodes of Gerry Anderson's cult Supermarionation series in one box set. In 'Trapped in the Sky', evil villain the Hood hatches a plot to photograph the Thunderbirds vehicles in action. 'Pit of Peril' sees International Rescue called in when the test drive of a new army vehicle goes awry. In 'The Perils of Penelope', Lady Penelope and prominent scientist Professor Borendor are kidnapped in a fiendish attempt to extort a secret fuel formula from the latter. 'Terror in New York City' sees Gordon Tracy racing to the rescue in Thunderbird 4 when a television reporter and his cameraman become trapped in a collapsing Empire State Building. In 'Edge of Impact', a Red Arrow aircraft crashes after being sabotaged by the Hood, and Thunderbird 2 speeds to the rescue. 'Day of Disaster' sees Gordon attempting to save two engineers trapped in a probe rocket which is set to self-destruct. In '30 Minutes After Noon', Scott, Virgil and Adam attempt to prevent the biggest nuclear bomb blast the world has ever seen. 'Desperate Intruder' sees the Hood attempting to beat Brains and Tin-Tin to a cache of treasure buried at the bottom of Lake Anasta. In 'End of the Road', the Tracy boys have to rescue a family friend stranded on a cliff edge without revealing their true identity. 'The Uninvited' sees Scott and a team of archaeologists captured in the desert by a pyramid-dwelling tribe. In 'Sun Probe', Thunderbird 3 speeds into space to prevent a spaceship from colliding with the sun. 'Operation Crash-Dive' sees International Rescue attempting to discover the reason for the recent Fireflash airliner crashes. In 'Vault of Death', a bank worker becomes trapped in a time-locked safe, with oxygen rapidly running out. 'The Might Atom' sees the Hood stealing a robotic rodent which he plans to use to spy on International Rescue. In 'City of Fire', a fire in a shopping mall requires the use of Brain's untested new cutting gas - but will it be safe? 'The Imposters' sees a bogus group impersonating the International Rescue team in an attempt to discredit them. In 'The Man from MI5', Lady Penelope finds herself in deadly danger when she follows the trail of a missing British spy. 'Cry Wolf' sees Thunderbird 1 drawn to a false alarm when two Australian boys play at International Rescue. In 'Danger at Ocean Deep', the Thunderbirds investigate the disappearance of a missing tanker and its potentially explosive cargo. 'Move and You're Dead' finds Alan and Grandma trapped on a bridge girder with a bomb following the former's triumph in the Parola Sands motor race. In 'The Duchess Assignment', Lady Penelope's Duchess friend is kidnapped and held to ransom en route to selling a valuable painting. 'Brink of Disaster' sees Jeff, Tin-Tin and Brains trapped on a deadly monorail when they investigate a crooked tycoon. In 'Attack of the Alligators!', four men are trapped by giant alligators after accidentally spilling a growth formula into the nearby swamp. 'Martian Invasion' sees the International Rescue team filmed by the Hood after rescuing two actors trapped in a cave. In 'The Cham Cham', Lady Penelope and Tin-Tin go undercover in the music business when a series of American rocket crashes coincide with performances by pop group the Cass Carnaby Five. 'Security Hazard' sees Jeff become apopleptic when a young boy stows away aboard Thunderbird 2 and observes International Rescue in action. In 'Atlantic Inferno', Scott is left in charge when Jeff goes on holiday, and has to decide what to do when a nearby oil rig catches fire. 'Path of Destruction' sees the team racing to halt the carnage being created by an out-of-control, atomic-powered tree-logger. In 'Alias Mr Hackenbacker', Lady Penelope contacts Thunderbirds when the plane she is travelling on is hijacked by criminals. 'Lord Parker's 'Oliday' sees Parker helping to avert chaos when the solar-powered Mediterranean resort of Monte Bianco loses its reflector in a storm. In 'Ricochet', Tin-Tin discovers that an orbiting TV station has been damaged by a rogue space rocket, and will explode upon re-entering Earth's atmosphere. 'Give or Take a Million' sees a pair of crooks' planned robbery going awry when they become trapped in a children's hospital.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
101 of 103 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Very Best Memories ... 6 Sep 2009
Format:DVD|Amazon Verified Purchase
Thunderbirds was always something I had fond memories of watching as a child and when I saw that had dropped the price of the complete series DVD box set I hesitated buying it because I was wrestling with the notion that as an adult things often do not seem as good as they were as a child.

After going through the "Should I, shouldn't I" phase, I finally relented and purchased it. Upon receiving the box set I promptly began watching ....

Wow! amazing! all my concerns about whether this would be watchable again as an adult melted away. From the classic "5 ... 4 ... 3 ... 2 ....1!" opening sequence which gives the viewer an instant teaser trailer of what the episode will feature accompanied by the thrilling, fast paced theme tune, I was hooked! Gerry Anderson uses the preview teasers during the opening sequences of several of his TV series to great effect and Thunderbirds is one of the best at doing this.

Toward the end of the first episode while the Fire Flash airliner was attempting it's emergency landing with he fantastic camera shots of the aircraft from above trying to line up for a landing on the elevator cars I actually began to perspire with the adrenaline. Anderson knows exactly how to portray the excitement and danger of a rescue situation not only visually, but with excellent high-octane music perfectly composed and used to underscore the scene. The effects are wonderful with large objects actually behaving like they're heavy and have real mass, often belie their 40+ year old age.

Anderson's attention to detail (watch the hot steam rise from the hydraulic ram used to raise the massive Thunderbird 2 just prior to its launch or the sweat on the face of Virgil during the elevator car sequences) and the array of clever and incredible machines he created still stands out today. Sure, as a product of the mid 60's you can see the influence of that decade in many of the aspects of the show, but this only adds to the charm of the series in my view.

Picture and sound are very good with vibrant colour and sounds which I think have been digitally enhanced to give explosions and jet thrust blast offs a bigger kick which is a nice touch.

All this action would be fine, but add to that strong and well defined characters meant that I found that I actually liked the Tracey family and cared about what happened to them. My personal favourite is Scott who is cool under pressure and also has the perfect voice that really adds to the "coolness" of the show. Surprising too, was how adult many of the themes seemed to be. Things like politics, ambition, anger and greed play a part in many plot lines which as a child probably went unnoticed, but as an adult viewer you can see how clever and often sophisticated the stories were and how this show was created in a different era where we didn't "dumb-down".

There's also a great positive moral tale here too, that someone would spend the time and huge sums of money to put such an organization together to save human life at the risk of his own son's lives and seek no publicity nor financial reward for doing so. This selfless and noble aspect also adds to the "feel good" factor of a successful rescue against the odds.

After watching all 32 episodes now I can honestly say that I felt a tinge of sadness that it was all over and left me wanting more. The extra disc is very informative and well worth inclusion in this box set.

I could go on more, but I think I've made my views clear in this review. I personally can thoroughly recommend the purchase of this box set and wondered why I waited so long to get hold of it. If, like me, you watch this show and smile again and think "Wow! they just don't make them like that anymore" then you'll know what I mean.
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67 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A FABulous one, M'lady, Habsolutely FABulous! 30 Jun 2010
Thunderbirds quite rightly stands head and shoulders above all other British television programmes, and, apart from the soaps and Only Fools And Horses, is probably the best remembered TV show in the country. As a Sci Fi Show, only Star Trek (vastly inferior in my opinion, the yanks could never match Derek Meddings Special effects so they poached him for Holywood)is better known, and as a childrens T.V. Series only Sesame Street(per-lease!!!)is arguably better known. And when it comes to TV intro's, Peter Dyneley's 5-4-3-2-1 Thunderbirds are go! intro unequivecally the world's most famous TV introduction. Many people have commented on Amazon about the show and this DVD set.

I'll comment about the DVD's themselves a little later, but first I'll give you a little history behind the show. It was produced by Gerry Anderson's APF (Anderson Povis Films Arthur Povis was Gerry's original partner but sold out to Gerry) Television productions which, by 1964 when the cameras first rolled on the series, was wholly owned by Lew Grades ITC. It was the third British series to be filmed in colour. The first was the second half of 1958's the adventures of Lancelot series (another Lew Grade production), filmed at a time when Colour TV was taking off in the states and the BBC was heavilly trialling experimental colour broadcasts). The second was Stingray (in colour for sale to the USA), another landmark Anderson production.

Originally a 30 minute show, Grade saw the pilot episode and declared 'That's not a TV show it's a Feature film' and ordered the whole series be made as an hour long show. The problem was that 9 half hour episodes were already finished, and had to be extended (hence the full launch sequences being repeated in several shows). When the BBC gave the programme it's first network airing in 1990 (each ITV region had scheduled it at different times and dates) it was estimated each episode had a cost of about half a million pounds after allowing for inflation etc at 1990's prices, so we could almost double it by todays prices.

I'd only been born for 18 months when Thunderbirds debuted at 7pm on 30th Sept 1965 in the ATV Midlands region, hardly a children's TV slot.. Lew Grade was dismayed when US stations split each episode into two half hours, a practice that some ITV regions adopted for the later episodes.A comic, TV Century 21 had debuted in January 1965 and had introduced Lady Penelope & Parker 6 months to the first episode being broadcast. On 15th Sept 1969It was the first Children's TV show to be broadcast in colour, and Birds Eye peas became the first colour ad in the UK, when it was broadcast during the show.

As a boy my childhood dream was like many lads of my age to pilot Thunderbird 1. It had been repeated regularly between 1965 & the early 70's, only to vanish from our screens until 1981 when most ITV regions repeated it, along with Joe 90, Stingray, and all the colour ITC series from the 60's with the exception of Department S. It might well remained forgotten had ITC not been sold to Polygram entertainment. Back in 1981 ITC had edited several episodes of Gerry Anderson's series into TV movies, among them were 3 Thunderbirds films. The first of these was entitled `Countdown to disaster' and had two 50 minute episodes (without adverts of course) edited into a 90 minute movie. When Polygram released it on video cassette it wasn't expecting anything special sales wise. It went on to be the best selling children's video of the year. As a result the other two movies were released, followed by the remaining 26 episodes, in production schedule. Carlton TV bought out Polygram Video in the 90's.

In 1990 the BBC repeated the entire series in production order (apart from the Christmas episode shown the Friday before the 25th). Merchandising had never been as big as this since when it was first broadcast, with comics, toys,sweets etc. Thunderbirds was suddenly the most talked about kids show on Tv, almost exactly 25 years to the weekend of it's first broadcast. Thunderbirds was suddenly go all over again. In 1999, the BBC repeated the series yet again, this time with digitally remastered versions. The picture quality however was a bit of a letdown, looking like an NTSC transfer of a 70's TV comedy.


The DVDs are housed in a plastic 'Digipak' case which comes in a laminated cardboard sleeve, just marginally bigger than a VHS video case. This can be awkward to close properly. All 9 DVD's are included, 8 containing all episodes, the 9th being the 'Thunderbirds Companion' Doccumentary from 1999. Each disc contains 4 episodes, plus special features, except the companion. Some are accessible only on a computer. Generally, they are mainly picture/text based, giving insight into the tech specs of the craft or history of the series with cast bios etc. Several discs have sections of the companion doccumentary as well.

The picture remastering has , overall, been well mastered. Fortunately, the mastering hasn't been done on a BRITE machine that Granada own (if you've seen ITV 3/4 re runs of the Proffessionals or Robin of Sherwood that useed BRITE `Britsh Independent Television Enterprises' a company formed to remaster old shows when Granada & LWT merged-you'll know how awful they look), and is sharp and clear. Carlton who used the original inter-positive masters as opposed to broadcast prints which means there's hardly any scratches on the episodes, unlike many younger classic TV shows from the 70's mastered from scratchy and damaged transmission prints. Colour and contrast seems a little dull, the best episode colour wise seems to be `The Duchess Affair.' It's still in the 4:3 ratio, but my TV stretches it to 16:9. It looks great on a large widescreen TV, and the family's Mac Mini is set to HDMI quality, so it looks absolutely fantastic.

Sound is excellent, and the effects are fantastic. It's been transferred to 5:1 surround sound. This means the effects and music are on separate tracks to the dialogue, which can get a little drowned out when the music or effects get too loud when viewed on a normal stereo TV. The music has been re-channelled for stereo sound. I watched an episode on my laptop through headphones, and the stereo effect was noticeable, without sounding too harsh or echoey like some oldies music C.D.'s can appear.

All 32 episodes are present in their entirety, with just over 27 hours of worth of programmes on 8 discs. Despite what one Amazon reviewer states, they appear in the original broadcast order, as both the Polygram video releases and the BBC re-runs used the production order. The reviewer's confusion probably stems from the fact that the Fanderson web site lists them in production order with the original broadcast date underneath the episode review. The original cinematography was breathtaking, (just look at the shots of sidewinder falling into the pit in `Pit of peril' or the stormy rockslide in `End of the road') and the Models (Especially Thunderbirds 1, 3 & 4 don't date at all. The stills of them on the back of the box could be from the 2000's not the 60's. Standout episodes include the series opener `Trapped in the sky', `Pit of peril', `City Of Fire', `Atlantic inferno' `Sun probe' and the eerily dark & Macabre fan favourite (though not mine) `Attack of the aligators'. The series revolves around the daring life saving exploits of International Rescue their incredible Thunderbird machines, in reality millionaire ex astronaut Jeff Tracy the and his family. The recurring Villain of the piece is the Hood a mercenary, villain and master of espionage with mystic powers, who appears in over half a dozen episodes. He longs to steal the secrets of International Rescue.Trivia: Although the official statement from Gerry Anderson is that the Hood's name is never mentioned, at the end of the episode `Edge of impact' it IS heard being spoken through an underwater speaker. Many of the technical gadgets in the show have since become reality, such as supersonic travel, radio microphones, video phones, etc, etc, etc, and if you look at the glasses many of the puppets are wearing..... why they're back in fashion.

There's lots of features spread across the 8DVD's of episodes. Several discs feature segments from the Documentary on disc 9, which is a shame. They're there because the discs were originally sold as 8 single volumes. Also, there's a section on each disc featuring biogs about the characters and machines. These are from the Thunderbirds comics. Several cutaway diagrams and pictures accompany the text, and again these are from the comics. Some of the photo's of the puppets and craft were originally taken for the TV Century 21 comic from the 6o's, whilst the text appeared in the 1991 comics, but may have been reprinted from TV21. Some stills of the original comics are used as well as a quiz, and original TV ads for Lyons Maid & Kelloggs featuring the characters made by Gerry's APF films. A printable DVD Rom section for viewing on a PC rounds off each special features section. It would have been better (as other TV series box sets often do) to put all the special features on the last disc with the companion documentary, as I was expecting, as the packaging gives that impression.

Despite the minor flaws mentioned earlier with the pale colour (turn the colour & contrast up), dialogue and special features being spread across all discs, the set deserves a full five stars for two reasons. Firstly: The price. I paid £15.95 from Amazon (not a marketplace trader) for a brand new copy, equals 48 pence per episode, or just under £1.75 per disc. It's gone up to £20.74 which is still a bargain.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Oh dear! The very best series in the world given a superb HD transfer - but savagely cropped leaving the Hood looking like a boiled egg with the top cut off. Absolutely criminal and stupid! Anyone who says they don't care should be forced back to the early days of VHS when we had to endure pan and scan 4:3 versions of widescreen movies. When our TV's were so small there was very little option. Right now there is no excuse for savage cropping of original aspect ratios - particularly when most people have 40" plasmas or LCD's. Really - right now I'd suggest picking up the DVD set until they get this right. Unless you're happy to have just two thirds of the original image? It's a shame because the quality of that two thirds is superb. Whoever was responsible for this debacle - some kid probably who has no appreciation of the original - should be marched out of the building with his P45.

Crapola. Disgusting. Disrespectful. avoid!!!!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars great
who wouldn`t love these oldies. my grandson got to know all the characters and can name them, he is 4.
Published 21 days ago by Veronica Sudbury
5.0 out of 5 stars Fine work
Beautifully restored and produced. I love HD image and do not miss the original aspect ratio. Everything seems to be in order!
Published 23 days ago by Jukka Keso
5.0 out of 5 stars Nostalgia in a box....
Watched the pilot episode with my 8 year old son and I honestly don't know who was more enthralled. He was seeing it for the first time and I was reliving my childhood (we're... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Brian McCormack
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy the Blu-ray edition
The BD set looked very tempting, but a note of caution entered when I read those reviews that revealed the transfer had cropped the original 4:3 aspect ratio to widescreen (thus... Read more
Published 1 month ago by John Maltby
5.0 out of 5 stars This is FAB
A great set - the quality is excellent and it truly brings back childhood memories. Through more adult eyes you see the quirks of the filming, but it still shows huge foresight... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Paleylfc
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good
I understand everyone saying that cropping it from 4:3 to 16:9 is a crime, but at least the footage has been panned. Read more
Published 2 months ago by chrisbradbury
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
I loved the T.V series and was so happy when this came out on DVD and all in one package.

The extra DVD made me chuckle

no Gerry Anderson can say they are a... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Sarccy
5.0 out of 5 stars thunderbirds are go
bought for my young nephews birthday he loves it can t stop him watching, a bargain expertly and safely deliverde
Published 2 months ago by andy clark
5.0 out of 5 stars T.V Series
I remember this series in the 60's saying puppets
with no strings but now digitally restored you can
see strings, No bad points loved watching it when
I was... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mr Richard Davis
5.0 out of 5 stars Cant beat the classics
Nothing to add really. Well boxed, great memories for husband who is now introducing them to his 5 year old
Published 2 months ago by DI
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