Thunderbird Six

Thunderbird Six

Synopsis of Movie

The International Rescue team returned for a follow-up to the 1966 feature Thunderbirds Are Go with another tale of suspense and intrigue in 1968’s Thunderbird 6. Based on the British import series Thunderbirds, the film showcased Gerry and Sylvia Anderson’s “Supermarionation” puppet characters in an around-the-world voyage fraught with peril.

The background: In the year 2063, Jeff Tracy and his sons serve, protect and defend the planet as the International Rescue team. Piloting the five Thunderbird vehicles (a rocket, transport vehicle, spaceship, submarine and space satellite), International Rescue responds to the call of danger no matter where the source. In this film, International Rescue’s resident scientist, Brains, has developed a new airship, designed as cross between a Zeppelin and an ocean liner. His teammates laugh the idea off until the New World Aircraft company decides to build the creation. Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward, butler Parker, Brains’ lovely assistant Tin Tin and a few of the Tracy brothers join the airship’s maiden voyage, but the inventor himself is stuck back in the lab working on the new Thunderbird 6.

As the airship makes its way from London to New York to the Grand Canyon and on to Africa, the team discovers that the airship’s crew has been replaced with a group of saboteurs. The villains record the heroes’ conversations, editing them into a false cry for help to lure International Rescue into a trap. The shadowy Black Phantom is the evil mastermind behind it all, hoping to steal the Thunderbird vehicles for his own nefarious purposes. Scott and Virgil Tracy fly in to the rescue, but the airship is damaged and crashes into a thousand-foot tower, hanging precariously. The five Thunderbirds vehicles aren’t up to the task of this rescue, but perhaps the ultra-secret Thunderbird 6…

Like the television series on which it was based, Thunderbird 6 had as its biggest draw the innovative puppet work of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson. Using electronic and traditional string controls, model effects, and slot racers, the Andersons took their craft light years beyond simple marionette work. Though neither this film nor its predecessor made much of a splash on this side of the Atlantic, Thunderbirds gained an extremely loyal fan following, which has continued to grow in the ensuing decades.

Movie Release History

1966 - Thunderbirds Are Go
1968 - Thunderbird Six

Movie Sub Categories

live-action
sci-fi/fantasy
action/adventure

Movie Studio

United Artists

Cast

Black Phantom Keith Alexander
John Tracy Keith Alexander
Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward Sylvia Anderson
Foster 2 John Carson
Jeff Tracy Peter Dyneley
Foster Gary Files
Lane Gary Files
Tin-Tin Christine Finn
Brains David Graham
Gordon David Graham
Parker David Graham
Controller Geoffrey Keen
Scott Tracy Shane Rimmer
Virgil Tracy Jeremy Wilkin
Hogarth Jeremy Wilkin
Alan Tracy Matt Zimmerman

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