Thunderbirds is set to be given a brand new image with the imminent reboot of the iconic #Children's #Television series, brought up to date in the 21st century as Thunderbirds Are Go. Fans of the original may notice quite a big difference between the new version, with its computer-generated imagery (CGI) that broadcaster ITV plan to show, and the comparatively naïve and jerky puppets that characterised its early beginnings and some would say gave its homely warmth.
The 1960s version was created by Gerry and Sylvia Anderson and was filmed between 1964 and 1966, utilising the technology (as it was) of the day. A revolutionary hybrid filming technique that became termed as "Supermarionation" was born as a combination of marionette puppets with scale-modelspecial effects. Only 32 episodes of what was essentially a science-fiction crime-fighting programme were ever made, which have been repeated countless times since on British television to introduce new generations of children to its charm. More episodes might have been made at the time but for the lack of financial backing, as Lew Grade was unable to sell the programme to an American audience through their television networks.
To recognise that times have moved on dramatically in the fifty years since, the new version of the Tracy brothers' escapades within the auspices of "International Rescue" will be using advanced CGI techniques.
It is expected that the basic concept of the five Tracy brothers' base being located on an island in the South Pacific, owned by their extremely affluent father will remain mainly unchanged. The much-loved characters of "Brains", "Lady Penelope" and her butler and chauffeur "Parker" (with his catchy "Yes, M'Lady" catchphrase) will also be re-presented to a new audience. Indeed, in something of a coup for the new show, David Graham who provided the voice for the original Parker character is expected to reprise his role.
Also to be a fundamental part of the new show will be the ever-popular Thunderbirds' vehicles of choice, known as Thunderbird 1 through to 5: Scott Tracy pilots Thunderbird 1, which is a hypersonic rocket plane; Thunderbird 2, the multi-purpose dropship is flown by brother Virgil ; Alan is in command of Thunderbird 3, which is a rocket ; Gordon steers the aquatic vehicle which is Thunderbird 4; and Thunderbird 5, the orbiting satellite out in space is the domain of John.
An impressive line-up of stars are planned to provide the voices for the characters, as sharp-eared viewers may recognise Best Actress Oscar nominee Rosamund Pike as "Lady Penelope" and Fonejacker's Kayvan Novak as "Brains". Also expected to feature is the Love Actually and Game of Thrones' star Thomas Brodie-Sangster as John Tracy.Time will tell how successful the revamp becomes but the broadcaster is already making plans for a follow up series to be shown across 2016 and 2017.