I was honestly surprised as I watched this season. While I could remember almost all of season 1’s events once the episodes were introduced (even being able to tell “Thomas and Gordon” along with Ringo Starr) there were quite a number of episodes here I didn’t remember at all.
This season introduced quite a number of characters I remember being quite fond of such as Trevor, BoCo, Donald, Douglas, and Harold which got me quite excited, plus “Percy Takes a Plunge” and “Thomas Comes to Breakfast” were some of my favourite episodes (again with engines crashing or falling off the tracks in quite a few episodes). I was quite looking forward to it but I came out feeling pretty disappointed.
For one, a number of the new characters felt somewhat useless (even if I know they’re important later). Diesel for example, is somewhat of a major antagonist from what I remember of later episodes but he was just in 3 episodes before the Fat Controller sent him away. He also didn’t seem that evil and just took pranks a little far combined with narcissism. Bill, Ben and BoCo (it pains me) also felt pointless. We just got Donald and Douglass within the season and at this point Bill and Ben are basically Percy #2 and Percy #3. BoCo also really only seems to be here because they needed someone to keep Bill and Ben in check.
Adding on to this complaint up until (and including) Daisy there’s always an in-universe reason for needing a new engine. In this season an apple farmer that likes engines saves Trevor from scrap to work the orchards, Duck because Percy is overworked, Harold was seemingly always there just never showed up in season 1, Diesel again to help with general yard work, Donald and Douglas to replace Diesel (only one was requested though), Daisy to help while Thomas is being fixed. After them Bill and Ben potentially are like Harold but BoCo is seen in the main shed only after his introduction which I would take as that meaning he is new but why was he brought?
This season also has a lot more multi-episode stories. I already mentioned Diesel lasting 3 episodes but there’s also the Donald/Douglas trial period lasting 2, and Thomas Comes to Breakfast kicking off the events for Daisy which then lasts 2 episodes. While I like the one-offs fine I can appreciate taking the time and not rushing through a story.
I might have sounded a little more negative than last season but that’s because I don’t want to just repeat myself and most my positives from season 2 were just carry-overs from season 1. Looking ahead at the Wikia for season 3 it seems less characters are introduced and the ones that are have more time to flesh themselves out so this hopefully won’t be an issue again.