Ideas Showcase - Thunderbirds Are Go

Posted by ,
View image at flickr

As a child, I grew up watching many of the hugely popular Supermarionation puppet shows produced by Gerry and Sylvia Anderson, particularly Stingray, Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons, and Joe 90.

My favourite show, by far, was Thunderbirds. I used to watch the Tracy brothers of International Rescue go and save the world, usually after successfully getting out of self-created difficulties.

Andrew Clark's Thunderbirds Are Go Ideas project is nearing the end of its available time. I have featured this project in a previous Ideas Showcase article and I would really like to see this project reach 10,000 Supporters.

Read on as I describe a recent update that Andrew has made to this project. You will also get a chance to vote on whether you prefer the new project update.

Thunderbird 2

The Thunderbirds Are Go Ideas Project is based on the recent animated TV series.

Thunderbird 2 is the large, green VTOL aircraft that is used in most of International Rescue's earth-based rescue missions.

Thunderbird 2 is one of the best known Thunderbird vehicles, and it is capable of transporting pods.

View image at flickr

The pods are capable of carrying a selection of support craft used for different rescue missions, most notably:

  • Thunderbird 4, a small, yellow utility submersible for underwater rescue.

View image at flickr

  • The Mole, a high-speed, manned 30-ton tunnelling machine.

View image at flickr

  • Elevator Cars that are used at airports to enable stricken aircraft to land safely.

View image at flickr

The pods add more scope for play features.

Andrew Clark comments, "When I started designing the model I had seen several episodes of Thunderbirds Are Go, and additionally, I gathered reference material."

"This project did teach me a lesson: never make assumptions. I added the Master Elevator Car assuming that it would be in the new series. I later learned it does not seem to show in the new series. So a life lesson learned, don't assume the new series has it."

View image at flickr

In this version of Thunderbird 2, the four legs swing down raising the aircraft. This is so that the pods can open up revealing the support craft carried inside.

View image at flickr

View image at flickr

The pods add more scope for play features.

View image at flickr

Andrew Clark comments, "When I started designing the model I had seen several episodes of Thunderbirds Are Go, and additionally, I gathered reference material."

"This project did teach me a lesson: never make assumptions. I added the Master Elevator Car assuming that it would be in the new series. I later learned it does not seem to show in the new series. So a life lesson learned, don't assume the new series has it."

In this version of Thunderbird 2, the four legs swing down raising the aircraft. This is so that the pods can open up revealing the support craft carried inside.

View image at flickr


Minifigures

The project has five printed Mini Figure Trophies (or Nanofigs) as the five Tracy brothers.

The five Tracy brothers were named after astronauts from the NASA Mercury programme:

Minifigures

The project has five printed Mini Figure Trophies (or Nanofigs) as the five Tracy brothers.

The five Tracy brothers were named after astronauts from the NASA Mercury programme:

The first Mercury flight, Freedom 7, occurred 58 years ago on May 5, 1961.

View image at flickr

The Mini Figure Trophies are small enough to fit into the cockpit of Thunderbird 2.

View image at flickr

Andrew has responded to the feedback on the project's Comments Tab, "Many people felt the project was missing a detailed minifigure of a least one of the members of International Rescue."

"I recently updated the project to include a Minifigure, as while the micro figures give a good sense of scale, their size and lack of being poseable can be a deal breaker for fans, so now the main pilot of Thunderbird 2, Virgil, has been added as an update," he said.

View image at flickr


Thunderbirds Are Go

Thunderbirds Are Go is a TV series produced by ITV Studios and Pukeko Pictures that first aired in 2015.

The series was produced using scale models, miniature effects and CGI.

Thunderbird 2 has a very angular look, particularly the square looking Super Charge Intake System and Primary Thruster Engines down each side of the fuselage.

Andrew Clark has re-created this modern looking Thunderbird 2 extremely well.

View image at flickr


The original series of Thunderbirds

The original Thunderbirds was produced between 1964 and 1966 using a form of electronic marionette puppetry and was first seen in the United Kingdom on the ITV network in 1965.

Gerry Anderson and his model making team extensively used LEGO bricks in the models back in the 1960s. Take a look at these images and see whether you can find the LEGO bricks.

Andrew comments, "The original series Thunderbird 2 was more organic, and I was not sure, back then, if I could pull it off. So I decided to base this project on the new series where Thunderbird 2 is more angular in the central body section."

In a recent Update, Andrew has managed to effectively re-create the curved, organic look of the original Thunderbird design.

View image at flickr

View image at flickr

The updated design does have a few drawbacks: the legs clip-on rather than swing up and down. Andrew would have preferred to have telescopic legs but he could not find a good way to achieve that.

The pods lift up instead of slide down.

View image at flickr


Poll: Which Thunderbird version do you prefer?

The modern version based on Thunderbirds Are Go from 2015

View image at flickr

View image at flickr

The updated version based on the original Thunderbirds of the 1960s

View image at flickr

View image at flickr

Which version do you prefer?

The modern version based on Thunderbirds Are Go from 2015
The updated version based on the original Thunderbirds of the 1960s


Andrew Clark

Andrew is the designer of two, very popular, LEGO Ideas sets that have gone into production:

Doctor Who and Companions that came out as 21304 Doctor Who in 2015, and

The Flintstones that is currently in stores as 21316 The Flintstones.

In this three-minute video, Andrew describes his Thunderbirds LEGO Ideas Set Proposal.


Let's get this project to 10K

This project has just over 7,500 Supporters with only three months to go until it expires.

Let's see if we can get this project all the way to 10K.

That's easily achievable with only 30 new Supporters per day.

You have been Fully Advised and Briefed, F-A-B.

View image at flickr

View image at flickr

40 comments on this article

Gravatar
By in Australia,

Well, at least Thunderbirds are more recent than the Flintstones and there is a relatively current version on TV...

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

I'm not entirely sure I agree with the same people getting their designs made over and over, but I desperately want this to become a set. I hadn't seen the new original Thunderbird 2 model, it's fantastic.

Gravatar
By in United States,

I don't know, feels too niche to me. But I'm probably out of touch with what kids are into today...

Gravatar
By in United States,

@MisterBrickster I think it's heavily dependent on why those people's designs keep getting chosen. There are several MOC builders that consistently submit very good builds that don't even slightly conflict with the Ideas rules (licensing rules, specifically), and I feel like the fact they keep getting to the 10,000 vote mark is a sign of that quality. However, if people are just voting because they like someone, regardless of the build itself, I totally agree. But it's hard to deny that people like JK Brickworks, Andrew Clark, and robenanne regularly submit builds that are not just good ideas, but close to complete and needing few tweaks to actually move to production, which has to be a major plus when they are judging these sets.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

That update to the 60s version looks epic. I'd buy that, day one. We just need two more Elevator Cars!

Gravatar
By in Belgium,

This looks really nice

Gravatar
By in Netherlands,

The 1960's version will always have my preference, not just because of how the aircraft looks, but the characters/nanofigs as well, not to mention the added 'pod vehicles' such as the Elevator Car.
If the design sticks to that, it will definitely have my vote, otherwise: fantastic build and effort, but no thanks, personally. Good luck to Andrew Clark!

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

I dimly recall seeing this before and being slightly disappointed that it was based upon the modern version of the show, instead of the original that I watched (on repeat) in the early 90s.

I’m therefore delighted to see the updated 1960s styles, which I think can genuinely be considered design classics. Unfortunate that this version doesn’t have the same impressive functionality of the first model (difficult given all the compound slopes and curves I’d imagine), but if it were possible to add them in some future iteration (or maybe just fill the gap at the front of the pod), then this would win hands down.

Thank you for a great article. I totally hadn’t gotten the Mercury programme connection, despite recently watching The Right Stuff!

Gravatar
By in Germany,

Already supported quite a while ago. This would be a day one purchase for me.
Finally an IP that seems to be a match made in heaven for LEGO, after all the obscure stuff of late - other than the Flintstones of course :-)

Gravatar
By in France,

Supported this one ages ago. I have my wires a bit crossed because I love the 2015 Lego model but prefer the original 1960s series. The original series designs are still sleek, iconic, futuristic, and totally believable, while the modern series designs always struck me as chunky and a bit toy-like.

The boxy shape of the 2015 TB2 really lends itself to a build out of Lego, and the original submission is a stunning rendition. The 1960s update just doesn't look quite right to me, it's got all the sleek curves but the ship has been bulked up in the wrong places.

Gravatar
By in Australia,

I would buy this set.the 1960's show was my favored show as a child.

Gravatar
By in Australia,

This may be my favourite Ideas set ever if it gets produced. That classic 60’s TB2 is amazing. Lego could even hold a contest to design pod vehicles.

Gravatar
By in Belgium,

I always found the Starwars 7124 and 75091 Naboo Flash Speeders had a kind of Thunderbirds vibe... must be the color

Gravatar
By in Netherlands,

I really would like to have this one. But it is another licensed product, so pricing will be a problem.
Lego could add 1 pod with the set and sell loose pods with other support vehicles.
And of course the other machines Like TB1, TB3 and 5 should be sets as well.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Yay... I actually wrote to lego years ago at the Leicester HQ asking if they'd ever consider producing Thunderbirds, captain scarlet, stingray or even fireball XL5 Sets they did, nt give me a definitive answer but sent me a minifig keyring thanking me for my interest,
So i hope they make this, and maybe Fab 1..

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

It's almost as if they re-designed it for the 2015 show so that it was easier to build in LEGO!

Gravatar
By in Australia,

Definitely want the 60s version of TB 2 but could we please have Minifig versions of Scott Virgil Gordon and Brains as well as the nanofigs? That would definitely up the desirability of this set.
I could then build Mocs of Fireflash, Sunprobe or Sidewinder as “rescue missions” :-)

Gravatar
By in United States,

meh...

Gravatar
By in Canada,

I like the set, but I've no interest in the IP. Unfortunately the Ideas platform is much like the modern day movie industry heavily reliant on IP, franchises, remakes with very little original content.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Hope they do 60s versions of the figures alongside the ship. The new design has far too much going on, can't beat the classics. I feel like this would have been a good full Lego theme for the 90s or early 2000s, albeit at the cost of some curved detail.

Gravatar
By in United States,

I've never seen the show (old or new) but as a fan of all things Lego space related I think these are terrific! Love the creativity and look of the designs. Great use of the micro-figures too. I would definitely pick up this set in a heartbeat! Now I'm curious to check out the new show!

Gravatar
By in France,

only one thing to say - F.A.B.

absolutely love this model/set. Voted for it some time back so happy to see it getting another push hopefully to 10,000.

Along with Wall-E this is my favourite Ideas set

Gravatar
By in Germany,

The build seems to be outstanding, but the theme does not interest me the slightest. And that it uses nanofigs makes it a nogo for me.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Thunderbirds was among my favourite television series as a child and I enjoyed playing with the toys during the late 1990s and early 2000s so this project would be fantastic! I think both models look excellent, although I voted for the original craft as I have a stronger connection with that version of Thunderbird 2.

However, I am not sure how prevalent Thunderbirds is outside the UK. It has certainly been shown elsewhere but it is not necessarily comparable to a television series like Doctor Who which is popular around the world.

Best of luck to Andrew!

Gravatar
By in Netherlands,

I've actually never heard of Thunderbirds Are Go. This looks very cool and I would absolutely support this set idea. As I mentioned, I don't get any references about this model or the series, but I would really like own one.

As for the version, I prefer the modern one, as I think the functions on that one are nicer and I'd like the overall look more. But I don't feel like my opinion is of any value here, obviously.

Gravatar
By in Netherlands,

yeee, i was supporter 7780, really hoping this will be a set!

Gravatar
By in United States,

I've heard of it but never watched the show, unfortunately. However, I prefer the version from the modern show because I like how all the legs, pods, ramps, and such work without detaching from the main model. I'd buy the modern version, but I'm not so sure about the updated one.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Absolutely, one hundred percent the original 1965 version.

If you've never seen the original Thunderbirds, go look up a few episodes. Now. 30 Minutes After Noon, Terror in New York City, Path of Destruction, Atlantic Inferno, Sun Probe, Attack of the Alligators, The Duchess Assignment, Ricochet, etc.

Do it, you need to see it.

Gravatar
By in United States,

Never watched it. Never heard of it. But the MOC looks cool. Depending on price I may consider getting it even though I have zero affinity for the source material.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Ode to the Scott Memorial, Edinburgh.

"When all is said and done.
The Scott Memorial looks a lot like Thunderbird Three.
Which is odd because Scott was the pilot
for Thunderbird One."

Gravatar
By in United States,

As a random younger person in this world, looking at this from a normal.. consumer perspective

I have no idea what this is. It's a cool model but I feel if *I* have no idea what Thunderbirds is, that speaks for it's success as a product. I don't think this would make a good LEGO set but as I said, it's really well made.

Gravatar
By in Netherlands,

I don't like nanofigs. Would have been nicer if the Thunderbird 2 was an actual minifig scale playset with some minifigs but then the scale of the small vehicles wouldn't make any sense.
Nah it's a pass for me, thunderbirds aren't relevant to me anymore and also never have been.

Gravatar
By in United States,

Wasn't the Thunderbirds a British program? That probably explains why most of us younger American's are scratching our heads as to what is while the older British and other Europeans here seem to be jumping up and down in glee at the thought. Frankly I don't know much about the show other than a few clips and stills I have seen which made me always think those puppets looked a bit creepy... but that is a sweet looking Lego spaceship so I won't complain if its produced!

Gravatar
By in United States,

My dad and his brother grew up in the 1960s watching Supercar, Fireball XL5, Stingray, Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet, Space 1999, and Joe 90, and as a result I grew up watching Stingray and Thunderbirds on VHS. I always wanted Thunderbirds Legos as a kid, so I supported this project a long time ago. If I could give it an extra vote I would!

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

I guess people who don't know what Thunderbirds is feel the way I did when everyone was losing their minds over Voltron :p

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

If this gets the votes I feel like it’ll actually get approved. Thunderbirds was supposedly in the pipeline for Dimensions before it got cancelled so ITV are obviously interested in working with LEGO.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

"Thunderbirds Are Go".... Or NOT since LEGO seems to shun clever creative designs and settle for dross instead. I very doubt that this superb set will be seen on shelves, LEGO are that stupid!

Gravatar
By in United States,

@TabbyBoy, that's a very ignorant thing to say. There are many reasons ideas we think are very creative aren't made. A lot more than just creativity has to be considered for sets, one of the biggest probably being license agreements. I too think this is a well-made set and very creative, but there are many things that matter. Is there a market for it? Can they secure the rights to make it to begin with? Just because a set gets 10,000 votes doesn't mean it will sell well. Don't insult Lego just because they aren't making a set you want.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

I like it, but I'd prefer something a bit bigger - deformed scale to at least be able to seat one minfigure pilot (although nowhere near full-scale). Though going by the insane prices LEGO is asking for Ideas and other specialist sets (Stranger Things for example) that would likely be a non-starter.

Gravatar
By in Netherlands,

Next up the FAB1 with Lady Penelope and Parker minifigs??

Return to home page »