Being a dad with small kids one of the things I have found difficult is spending some quality time after work before bed when my son watches his daily 30 minutes of kids tv. I found it so difficult I started looking for things from my childhood that I thought I could get him on DVD so at least I could relate to what we watched together. I mean 'the Tweenies' are a tough watch. So I started with a classic British 70's puppet show called
'The Clangers'

Well at 3 years old and after 25 minutes of considered viewing he turned to me and said,
" Dad! What is happening?"

I had to admit I had 'no idea' either! So back to the drawing board.

I looked up The Thunderbirds on Amazon, 125 for the whole set, What!!!! Even now they are like 75 so off I went to Ebay and promptly bought everything for about 25 from some guys in Jersey, very good service I can recommend them. Ebay handle - gowingstore( 157830

So I put my boy down in front of the set and guess what? He not only loves it but has become a Thunderbirds officianardo, not for him the 21st Century Hollywood remake, oh no! 60's puppetry all of the way.

So problem solved I sit down with him to enjoy some 'quality time' only after a while I realise that these things are 40 minutes long and a'kid's programme' so basically I am back in the same boat until I spot something in the 2nd episode. grabbing the remote out of his poor little hand I stop the movie, spin it back and step through frame by frame.

Jeff Tracie - yes! ok!

Jeff Tracie - checks his watch! ok.

Typical of animators I thought, they even created their own scale watches, this one reminds me of a Universal bumper auto.

Cut to Space Station

Astronaut fixing something, yes! Yes! ok!

Where is this frame and is it what I thought it was... Oh! He is looking at his watch!

Yes ok they have mocked up a Speedmaster!

Oh looks like a good plastic model!!

Oh! My god they actually used a 'real' Omega Speedmaster 105.003 from 1964/65 on its 1039 bracelet. They used a real wrist because the puppet wrist would be too small just so they could be authentic. I read somewhere that Anderson had 60,000 an episode although probably more like a series from Lou Grade the controller of ATV in the 60's.

Oh well then!, problem solved, I can happily sit there with Jack and as long he doesn't mind the odd break in service while I rewind a sequence we can happily enjoy each others' company.
Him enjoying the daring do of the Thunderbirds and me looking for watches.

Oh! happy days.



PS. Since this was written I have owned two of those Speedmasters...