bit of a story behind this one – I wanted to introduce a locomotive based on that from the Campbeltown and Machrihanish
Railway in Argyll – basically one of the few other 2ft 3in gauge lines in the country, which closed in 1935. To honour his Scottish roots, I initially called him Thorfinn, but Loey Machan wanted to change the name
to something more Sudrian. I didn’t agree with many of the choices he put
forward, and exacerbated, he finally asked “Why Thorfinn?” – to which I replied, “So I can have a
title called ‘It’s Thorfinn Time!’”
All the titles in this book are derived from Power Rangers in one way or another in keeping with
that joke, it became a small theme which linked to popular culture, that I think we got away with...
IT’S THORFINN TIME!
A well-known catchphrase from the first five seasons of Power Rangers is adapted for our title...
Mr Hugh proudly announces that the new Mid Sodor Heritage Railway No.4 will be undergoing trials on the Skarloey Railway,
following his completion at the Crovan’s Gate Works. Everyone is quite
taken aback by the sheer size of the engine – whose working name is Thorfinn, after Thorfinn the Mighty, ruler of Scotland,
Sodor and Man for a time many centuries ago. Thorfinn takes pride in the fact
that he is named after ‘the tallest and strongest of men’ – whilst Rheneas informs him that he was also ‘ugly, black-haired, sharp-featured, and big-nosed, and with somewhat scowling
brows. He was a mighty man of strife, and greedy both of money and honour.’ And to make matters worse, on a trial run up the line, he proves to be a very rough
MIGHTY THORFINN, POWERFUL SHAMUS
The character names for this title were ideal, and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity. Mr Hugh decides that Thorfinn’s next trial run should be with another engine
– one who will be strong enough to keep him in check, and won’t spark up a rivalry, like Ivo Hugh might. Shamus Terboc is chosen to go with him, much to Thorfinn’s outrage. He continues to be petulant and demanding throughout the course of the journey up the line, and his complacency
and selfishness nearly causes an accident when a motorist speeds through the level crossing as they’re approaching.
Shamus speaks severely to him, but Thorfinn is completely unrepentant.
DAY OF THE DERAIL
Title drawn from the debut episode of Power Rangers, Day of the Dumpster... a special
photographic event to help raise funds for the Mid Sodor Heritage Railway and officially launch Thorfinn is to take place
on the Skarloey Railway, and the situation goes right to the young engine’s smokebox.
He takes a photographic charter up the line, and revels in the attention. On
the way back to the yard, he deliberately dawdles which forces Mr Hugh to open the regulator and give him more puff, which
enables Thorfinn to make a ‘special entrance’. But the grand entrance
is thwarted when Thorfinn doesn’t go the way he expects to, and ends up derailing in the middle of the yard. And after the Mid Sodor Manager tells him off for being a ‘Turbo Tank Engine’ (another PR reference!),
he begins to feel sorry for the people who came to see him. Mr Hugh has an idea
and organises for a floodlight photography session to make up for it. But as
he leaves that evening, he tells Thorfinn that there’s changes due the next morning!
THORFINN NO MORE
Title taken from the MMPR
Series 2 arc – Green No More, where the Green Ranger lost his powers.
The same thing happens here, Thorfinn loses his name and gains something more fitting and sober. Thorfinn appears from the shed with a new Caledonian blue livery, and promising a new attitude following
his fall from grace. In Duke’s absence, the new engine is given the honour
of hauling the first train into Ulfstead Road, where the Canon Dreswick unveils his new name – Rognvald. The young engine is proud to learn that he now carries the name of a brave warrior who was also kind, thoughtful
and intelligent man, renowned for strength and courage, and loved by those who knew him.
He is proud to now have someone truly great to aspire to...