A great many toys
created from Gerry Anderson's Supermarionation shows, among them
Supercar and Fireball XL5. But most have been inspired by his most
popular and enduring series, Thunderbirds. Carlton, Bandai, Konami, and
are a few companies that have created Thunderbirds toys, collectibles
and action figures.
Many of these
sets are for sale
on the web and through e-Bay. The Carlton/Vivid set shown here is in
the large plastic playset category, which is pretty much what people
like about it. Complaints included that the stickers fall off, which is
a standard gripe about this sort of set. The stickers on mine are
staying on, but it's also not getting rough treatment. This is not a
roughneck sort of set, but viewed as a collectible, it's pretty good.
You can usually find Tracy Island for around $150 US, although most
sets were sold in Britain, and SoundTech vehicles carded for about $10
each. Matchbox also made a Tracy Island playset.
Left: Thunderbirds Tracy Island
playset by Carlton. This set is designed as an accessory for Carlton's
SoundTech vehicles, and doesn't come with any of the vehicles shown.
This is a large, plastic playset measuring 20 inches in length and 8
hanger door shut and palm trees lining
launch ramp. Push a button on the floor of the hanger and the door
slowly opens. The swimming pool slides away to reveal the TB1 launch
round house tops the silo for TB3.
light up along with twelve SoundTech
phrases when you push the control buttons.
vehicles added. Move a
lever and palm trees fall away and TB2 launch ramp elevates. TB1 in
silo with swimming pool slid away. TB3 in round house. Both craft are
standing on film cans to make them higher for this picture. Fab1 in
TB3, and Fab1 each feature three
phrases. TB2 makes electronic sounds. Push a button and TB2 rises on
spring-loaded legs, and can carry either the tiny TB4 or TB5 included
with TB2. This picture also shows small keychains of TB1 and TB3, to
the left and right of the
four carded vehicles.
| Above: A
TB1 from Bandai. TB1 can be set on the plastic launchpad, or set
horizontally on the gantry for the "in flight" mode. Push a button on
TB1 and the wings pop out. TB1 is 4.5 inches high and sets in a foam
cutout in the box, which is about 8 X 5 inches and features graphics on
all sides. Bandai wins for attractive presentation with this unusual
set, which originally cost under $40 at Kimono My House (see Robot