Emily Knows Best (Thomas & Friends)
"Emily Knows Best" is the seventeenth episode of the ninth season of Thomas & Friends. It aired in October 28th in the UK, and on October 30th 2005 in the US, two days later.
Emily is taking visitors to the ruined castle, where a queen once lived. Emily wishes to be a queen, since they tell everyone what to do. She decides to visit Toby and Percy in the shunting yard, which is just down the line from the castle whilst waiting for the visitors to explore the castle.
Why It Knows Nothing
- Emily, like she is in Season 8, is unlikable in this episode. Not to mention, she is rather miscast as the main character because Daisy could have been the perfect role, as she believes she knows better than anyone else and orders Percy about.
- Speaking of the obvious, this episode's premise may seem pointless for Emily being the main character of the episode because Emily would at least know by now that work is more important than playing while doing a job she was supposed to stick with. Of course, the show was two seasons after her introductory from Season 7, but that doesn't help the fact this episode doesn't work if you miscast Emily the character that she isn't. Engines like James, Gordon, and Daisy have bossy and fussy characters, so this episode could have just used Daisy instead.
- There are four plot holes to discuss about how problematic this episode is:
- If Percy and Toby were told to shunt trucks at the castle, then why did Toby take some of the trucks as if he was assigned to pull a goods train?
- Why was Mavis pulling stone trucks to the castle anyway?
- If Emily is scolded for causing confusion and delay by the Fat Controller/Sir Topham Hatt, then why didn't the Fat Controller/Sir Topham Hatt scold Emily for leaving her coaches behind at the Ruined Castle? The passengers would get cross with Emily because she was the one who left her passengers and her passenger coaches/cars stranded in the first place.
- If the telephone lines nearby the Ruined Castle were down, then why is it possible for the stationmaster to telephone for help?
- Toby's crash is not even needed for this episode because he is a steam tram with a cowcatcher at both the front and back. Sure, he can run over a telephone pole, but he can't derail if his cowcatcher can push it out of the way unlike how he derailed to a boulder on the quarry track in "Toby Feels Left Out".
- Some clumsy dialogue from the narrator. An example here is that he states that Mavis can't move as she is stuck amongst the trucks even though she's clearly derailed. That even comes off as a writing error.
- Emily may have apologized to Toby and Sir Topham Hatt, but she didn't apologize to Percy and Mavis for her misdemeanor earlier. Although, this is the least of the episode's problems because Emily is grateful that Toby knew what to do and that she set things right for Percy, Toby, and Mavis after all.
- The narrator only said that Toby had been lifted back on the rails, but not Percy and Mavis, which is ironic considering the fact that they were rerailed by the time Emily met up with them again before being reprimanded for her actions.
- Mavis is never seen in this episode again after the crash!
- For the rest of the episode, Emily is just telling Percy what to do and not doing her work until the crash occurs, not to mention not continuing her tourist run is probably 35 minutes late by now. It's no wonder why she was miscast in this episode, and it's also no wonder why she didn't get punished for leaving her coaches behind, as well as her passengers.
- The camera shaking effect is really cool.
- As usual, Percy, Toby, Mavis, and Sir Topham Hatt are likable characters.
- The funny thing is that Toby is in character and acts like his old personality which is ironic considering this episode came after "Toby Feels Left Out".
- The idea of Emily acting like a queen was a neat idea despite Emily being a miscast choice for the idea.
- The ending makes up for the episode's flaws. Emily apologizes to Toby and redeems herself to fix the damage that was done.
- The episode does teach a good moral to kids that "no-one knows everything".
- The setting of the Ruined Castle looks really interesting.
- The crash scenes are nice.
- A deleted scene from "Calling All Engines!" is used.
- In the individual version of the episode, the music at the end is omitted, except for in The Greatest Stories US DVD.
- This is the first time the camera is shaken to simulate an accident scene.
- This is the third episode in the ninth series, after "Rheneas and the Dinosaur" and "The Magic Lamp", where Thomas does not speak.
- When Percy gets the trucks moving, the front truck is wearing Toad's face mask.
"Emily Knows Best" received mixed reviews from fans and critics of Thomas and Friends alike.