List of Tugs characters
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Tugs, a British children's television series created by the producers of Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends, Robert D. Cardona and David Mitton, features two groups of anthropomorphized tugboat fleets: the Star Fleet and the Z-Stacks. They compete against each other in the fictional town of Bigg City Port.
In the North American adaptation, Salty's Lighthouse, the stories were re-purposed for a younger audience. The two groups were no longer rival tug fleets, and the characters underwent various changes. Sunshine, Captain Star, and Little Ditcher were considered female. Sunshine became the sister of fellow switcher Ten Cents. British accents were changed to American accents. Some names were changed, for instance, Big Mac became Big Stack, O.J. became Otis, and Zebedee became Zeebee.
The Star Fleet is a group who aims to work together on getting and fulfilling port contracts. It is led by Captain Star. Its symbol is a red funnel with blue and white stripes around the top. Fleet members also carry a red flag with a white star. Reporting to Captain Star are seven tugs, each of which has a numbered smoke stack. In "Regatta", Grampus the submarine becomes a member of Star Fleet. The Star Fleet tugs are modeled after the San Francisco tugs of the 1920s.
Ten Cents (#1) works as a harbour switcher on a wide variety of tasks around Bigg City Port. Chris Tulloch notes that Ten Cents was the first model he built for the series: "Ten Cents was 20 [inches] long, and his hull (fibreglass) was the basis for Zip and Zug."
Big Mac (#2) is a harbour tug.
O.J. (#3) is the sole remaining paddle-driven harbour tug in Bigg City Port. Chris Tulloch noted that the O.J. model used in the series was one of the most reliable. Other models, which had internal machinery, would often threaten to "turn turtle" and would have to be fixed firmly to a chassis.
Top Hat (#4) is an railway tug with a top hat and monocle.
Warrior (#5) has a large face and blue flat cap; he is the younger brother of Big Mac.
Hercules (#6) is an ocean-going tug who is tasked with escorting large vessels to port, or answering distress calls at sea. He is in charge of large operations and important contracts.
Sunshine (#7) is a small harbour switcher who performs various tasks.
Grampus is a small submarine that formerly worked for the Navy.
According to model maker Jeremy King, Grampus was modeled after Grampus-class submarines. Spike Knight fashioned Grampus in fiberglass by looking at old Grampus photos. He used a "parallel lifting version of the tugs' pull along trolleys so he could surface."
Captain Star is the owner of Star Fleet. He narrates the series in the past tense.
The Z-Stacks are devious, tricky and scheming boats. Their leader is Captain Zero, although the first tug Zorran runs the day-to-day operations. They regularly find ways to hinder and infuriate their rival Star Fleet tugs. Their physical appearance is modeled after the 1920s Moran tugs that were active in New York City.
Zorran is Captain Zero 's first tug, and the fleet leader of the Z-Stacks. He is a harbour tug who hatches various devious schemes against the Star Fleet.
Zebedee is Captain Zero 's second tug; he performs a variety of tasks around Bigg City Port.
Zak is the third member of the Z-Stacks.
As the fourth tug in the Z-Stacks, Zug is a harbour switcher that tows barges and works on liner docking operations.
Zip is the second harbour switcher in the Z-Stacks fleet. He works alongside Zug on minor contracts such as the freighting of quarried boulders.
He is voiced by John Baddeley. In Salty's Lighthouse, he is voiced by Ian James Corlett.
Captain Zero is the owner of the Z-Stacks. Like Captain Star.
He is voiced by Mike Mulloy. In Salty's Lighthouse, he is voiced by French Tickner.
Izzy is a large tramp steamer who regularly visits Bigg City Port with items such as bananas from Puerto Grande.
He is voiced by Mike Mulloy. In Salty's Lighthouse, he has an American accent, and is voiced by French Tickner.
Lillie is a lightship that is situated at Demder Rocks to warn shipping of potential hazard. She has a contract with the Star Fleet where they provide her with the necessary fuel and supplies to keep her light shining.
- Mitton, David (director) (1988). "Sunshine"/"Pirate" (Videotape). Surrey, England: Tugs Ltd. UPC 5016500102026. Retrieved 2010-06-16.
- "Bigg City Port – Behind the Scenes". biggcity.tripod.com. Retrieved March 18, 2013. – contains question/answer information from Chris Tulloch concerning the production of TUGS.
- Gratton, James (March–May 2011). "Crewmember Spotlight on Jeremy King". sodor-island.net. Retrieved March 17, 2013.