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This article is about 'the second season episode'. You may be looking for 'the thirteenth season episode, the VHS, the DVD, the Buzz Book, the annual story, the 1988 magazine story, the magazine story, or the 2012 magazine story'.
"Oh, I don't know. I like my brown paint."
"I've always been green. I wouldn't want to be any other colour either."
"Well.. well anyway... blue is the only colour for a really useful engine! Everyone knows that!
— Toby, Percy, and Thomas arguing

Thomas, Percy and the Coal , retitled Double Trouble in American releases, is the first episode of the second season. It aired in the US on the Shining Time Station episodes, Finders Keepers in 1989, reaired in Win, Lose or Draw in 1991 and the Mr. Conductor's Tales  episode, For the Birds in 1996.


Thomas claims to have the best paintwork on Sodor and brags to Percy and Toby about it. When they tell him they like their paint, Thomas insults them by saying blue is the only proper colour for a really useful engine.

Later that day, Thomas is resting by the coal hopper when Percy arrives to fill up some trucks. Thomas decides to be cheeky, warning Percy of the trucks' antics and some unsafe buffers behind him. The trucks then push Percy into the buffers and the last truck passes the coal chute causing a pile of coal to bury Thomas and ruin his paintwork; Percy thinks this is very funny, much to Thomas's fury. It takes so long to clean Thomas that Toby has to take Annie and Clarabel instead and pull his next train.

That night at the sheds, Thomas is angry with Percy; he thought Percy caused his accident on purpose. Percy then becomes mad at Thomas for thinking so, whilst Toby thought it was a great joke. The two tank engines spend the rest of the night arguing.

The next day, Thomas is feeling more cheerful as Percy brings in a train of trucks from the junction. The trucks are heavy and Percy wanted a drink, so he goes into the siding where the water tower is. As Percy heads to the siding, he finds he can't stop. He crashes through the buffers and lands in a pile of coal. Thomas had seen everything and leaves when his signal turns green.

That night, Percy and Thomas forgive each other and both vow to be more careful with coal.




  • This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, More About Thomas the Tank Engine.
  • This episode marks the first for a few things:
  • This episode replaced The Missing Coach after it was cancelled due to Britt Allcroft deciding the storyline of that episode would be too difficult for young viewers to understand.
  • In the UK narration, when the coal pours down on Thomas, he shouts "Help, I'm choking!" In both US narrations, however, he instead shouts "Help, Help!" This was likely changed because of the concept of choking possibly frightening younger audiences.
    • Despite this, both US narrations have the line "'I'm not disgraceful!' choked Thomas" said afterwards.
  • This episode was the first episode of Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends that Sam Wilkinson saw.[1]
  • When the narrator says, "It took so long to clean Thomas, that he wasn't in time for his next train," a first season-styled truck is seen.
  • In later versions of this episode, Christopher Awdry isn't listed in the credits.
  • The start of the Latin Spanish version features a brief clip of Thomas passing the Watermill from Percy's Promise.


  • Underneath the bridge Thomas crosses at the beginning, there is some black plastic.
  • When the narrator says that Thomas is resting in a siding, Thomas' eyes are wonky.
  • In Ringo's US version on the Thomas Breaks the Rules VHS, the A Cow on the Line Audio tape, and also in the Japanese version, the coal chute sound effects are absent.
  • In the panning shot of Thomas being cleaned, a shadow can be seen moving at the back of the shed behind Thomas, possibly that of a crew member. Thomas' eyes are also looking in different directions and his face is tilted.
  • When Toby backs up to Annie and Clarabel, his face is slightly loose and blu-tak is sticking out from the side of his face.
  • In the restored version, studio equipment is visible in the top corner when Toby pulls Annie and Clarabel.
  • In a deleted scene, a black plastic bag, which is used to simulate water, can be seen at the bottom while Thomas, Annie, and Clarabel pass the watermill.
  • Percy's eyes are wonky when he says that he has always been green.
  • When Toby takes Annie and Clarabel away, Clarabel's roof is not attached properly.
  • When Thomas and Percy are resting in the shed at the end, their eyes are wonky.
  • When Thomas is being covered in coal, the side shots show him clean but the close ups on his face show him very dirty.
  • When Percy arrives with his trucks at Tidmouth, a red express coach is amongst the trucks to the left of the screen, but after that there are only trucks on that siding.
  • In a close up of Thomas covered in coal at the coal hopper the hopper shakes.
  • In the restored version, studio equipment is visible at the top of the screen during a close up of the buffers and the water tower.


In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
German Chaos in Kohlenstaub Chaos in Coal Dust
Spanish Thomas, Percy y el Carbón / Doble Problema Thomas, Percy and the Coal / Double Trouble
Italian Nera come il carbone Black as Coal
Japanese トーマスとパーシーとせきたん Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Brazilian Portuguese Confusão em Dose Dupla Confusion in Double Dose
Norwegian Thomas, Percy og kullet Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Welsh Tomos, Pyrsi a'r Glo Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Hungarian Thomas, Percy és a Szén Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Slovenian Tomaž, Poldi in Premog Thomas, Percy and the Coal
French Thomas, Pierre et le charbon Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Dutch Thomas, Percy en de kolen Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Chinese 托马斯 培西和煤 Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Korean 석탄 속의 빠잔 토마스와 퍼시 Thomas and Percy Fell in the Coal
Russian Черный, как вороново крыло Black Raven
Ukrainian Томас, Персі та вугілля Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Polish Tomek, Piotrek i Węgiel Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Finnish Tuomas-Veturi, Pekka ja Hiilet Thomas the Tank Engine, Percy and the Coal
Romanian Thomas, Percy și Cărbunele Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Czech Tomáš, Percy a uhlí Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Slovak Thomas, Percy a uhlie Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Swedish Thomas, Percy och kollen Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Danish Thomas, Percy og kullene Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Serbian Tomas, Persi i ugalj Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Croatian Tomica, Pero i ugljen Thomas, Percy and the Coal
Thai โธมัสก็มอมแมม Thomas Was Ragged

Home Media Releases


DVD Boxsets




  • Thomas, Percy and the Coal and Other Stories
  • Truck Loads of Fun
  • The Complete Second Series

DVD Boxsets





Latin America

DVD Boxsets







DVD Packs