|Genre||Children's television series|
|Opening theme||"Mighty Machines"|
|Country of origin||Canada|
|No. of episodes||39|
|Running time||23 minutes|
|Production companies||Mighty Machines Productions|
|Picture format||480i (SDTV)|
|Original release||1994 –|
Mighty Machines is a Canadian children's television series about machines and how they work. It was nominated for a Gemini Award in 1996 in the category of Best Children's Program or Series. The series premiered in 1994 before ending its run in 2008, airing 39 episodes over 3.13 episode seasons.
Each Mighty Machines episode focuses on a specific type of heavy equipment or work environment. Machines talk to viewers on screen to explain their jobs. Documentary footage of actual machines in action doing their day-to-day work is presented with voiceovers of the machines addressing the viewers. The children in the audience are invited to follow the machines during a typical day. They explain their abilities and their duties in detail over the course of the episode. Each machine is given its own personality and they often hold conversations with one another as they work. Unlike most documentary-style shows, there is no external narrator.
The first-season episodes were done in two formats for broadcast: twenty-two-minute full episodes, and five-minute excerpts for use as filler.
Mighty Machines first aired as a production of Malofilm, the first season in 1994, second in 2004, and third in 2008 (done by Loten Media, and distributed by Seville Pictures). Most of the episodes were filmed in Toronto, Ontario; Montreal, Quebec; Halifax, Nova Scotia; and Roanoke, Virginia, USA.
The show airs on TVO, Treehouse TV and other channels in Canada, including Access in Alberta, the Saskatchewan Communications Network in Saskatchewan, and Knowledge in British Columbia. It also aired on Discovery Kids in the U.K. in 2005, on Qubo in the U.S. until August 31, 2014, and a French-language version airs on TFO in Ontario and on channels in Quebec.
All of the first three seasons' episodes are available on VHS and DVD, individually or in box sets. There is also a sixty-minute VHS featuring all of the five-minute episodes from season one.
Names of Mighty Machines
- DC (DC-10)
- Canadian airlines Boeing 737 (misnamed as an A320)
- Super Stearman
- Big Mack (demolition scrap truck)
Episode: “At the Demolition Site” Voice: Alan Marriott Role: Collecting rubble
Episode: “At the Quarry” Role: Carrying Rocks
Episode: At the Quarry Role: Carrying Rocks
Episode: In the city Role: Carrying the street garbage to the dump
Episode:At the construction site Role: Carrying Loose materials to and from the construction site •Mack
- The Dump Truck Brothers (In The City)
Role: Taking street garbage to the dump
Episode: At the construction site Role: Moving dirt
- Dozer (FMC Track Loader)
Episode: At the Demolition Site Voice: Michael Anthony Richardson Role: Smoothing areas with rock and dirt.
- Pee Wee
Episode: At the Garbage Dump Role: Smoothing out the garbage
- American Loader
- Irish Loader
- King (platform Truck)
- Big Cat
Episode: At the Construction Site Voice: Alan Marriott Role: Digging foundations
Episode: Making a road Voice: Kate Darling Role: Scooping and digging ditches for the road
- Dino (Shear Tractor)
Episode: At the Demolition Site Voice: T. Schneider Role: Stripping down buildings
Episode: At the Demolition Site Role: Picking up all the rubble from the demolition site
- Little Brother
- Dusty (Street Sweeper)
- Gusher (Street Sprinkler)
- Vacuum Vic (Sewer Cleaner)
- Stretch (Boom Truck)
- Stumper (Stump Remover)
- Lil Mack
- Big Dude
- "O" Train
- GO Train
- Engine 95
- Dusty (street sweeper)
- Little Dozer
- Trasher (Volvo Xpeditor WX)
- Whitey (Depicted first as a Ford C-series then a GMC Brigadier)
- Biffy (Mack MR FL garbage truck)
- Big Red (garbage transfer truck)
- Yorkie (Mack MR FL garbage truck)
- Tanker (International 9200)
- Big Hoss (Peterbilt 379)
- Big Grey (Peterbilt 379)
- Blue (Kenworth T600)
- Red (Western Star 4900)
- Mack (Mack R series)
- Frank (Freightliner Classic XL)
- Carrier (Volvo/White GMC WAH64)
List of episodes
Season One (1994) – Malofilm / Seville Pictures
1. At The Airport
At Toronto Pearson International Airport, DC, a big strong male Canadian Airlines DC-10 jet, explains (and shows) his journey from the hangar to the terminal, before picking up passengers and taking to the sky. He also shows the viewers how he gets cleaned in the hangar. Many other aircraft are featured in the episode including a Canadian airlines Boeing 737 (misnamed as an A320), a British Airways, Air Canada, and Lufthansa Boeing 747, an American Airlines Boeing 757 and a few others. This is the series premiere.
2. At The Quarry
Euclid, a dump truck, explains how he brings rocks from the quarry, and takes them to a rock Crusher, turning them into gravel. A gravel conveyor and an unnamed, Irish front-end loader also explain about how they work in these tasks for moving the gravel and rocks around.
3. In The City
Little Mac, a small municipal pickup truck, takes viewers out onto the streets of Toronto to show how the city streets are cleaned and washed. The featured machines that do this include a street sweeper named Dusty who cleans the roads through song, a vacuum truck named Vacuum Vic who cleans out sewers, a street sprinkler named Gusher that sprays water on the pavement, a stumper that obliterates stumps, and a tree trimmer named Stretch with a chipper, all of which are to prepare the streets every morning for traffic. At the yard, a front end loader named Jaws picks up the street garbage to load onto trucks to take to the dump.
4. In The Harbour
Murphy, a Toronto Police boat, takes viewers out into Toronto Harbour to show many of his harbour friends, including Blackie and Thor, two large freighters; William Mackenzie, a fireboat; and Flo and Merryweather, a couple of ferry boats Oriole, a Toronto city tours boat; a working replica of a square rigger ship and the two ferries that go to Toronto Island, all of which explain their use of operating in the harbour. Murphy speaks with an Irish accent.
5. At The Construction Site
An excavator named Big Cat shows viewers how he and his friends build a hospital from digging the foundation to building the walls. Also a tall crane named SkyHook from downtown and his friend Carmen, who is also a crane build a tall skyscraper that is almost finished. Other members of the construction company include Treads, a bulldozer, and George, a dump truck.
6. At The Race Track
A Formula Ford race car named Goldstar, takes viewers out onto the racetrack and explains how he is transported from the garage, as well as making pit stops and racing against all the other competitors. Goldstar is voiced by Arthur Holden.
7. At The Demolition Site
A Caterpillar Excavator with a Sheer Tractor attachment named Dino shows viewers around the Demolition Site. He explains how he demolishes an old factory building. Dozer, a tracked loader, bulldozes dirt and gravel and clears the way for others. Dynamite is used to demolish two water towers and a tall cement chimney. Mack truck also arrives to pick up all piles of rubble from the demolition site. Grapple, a Komatsu Excavator, as his name implies has a claw attachment to scoop up all the piles to load Mack. The episode took place at the St. Lawrence Starch Plant in Port Credit Mississauga which was located at Hurontario and Lakeshore. Dino is voiced by T Schneider.
8. At The Train Yard
Two Canadian Pacific SW1200RS switchers and a Canadian National GP38-2 road switcher named Shunty, Diesel and Freddie explain how work goes on in the train yard, including switching, putting the cars on the right train and transporting materials long distances. Spike and the tie gang do maintenance on the rails to keep them safe for the freight trains to run on.
9. At The Fire Hall
King, a Mack ladder truck shows viewers how his ladders and tiller work, while Pumper, a pumper truck shows how the hoses work. The episode also features some members of the North York Fire Department doing their training exercise. This was before North York merged into Toronto.
10. On The Road
A Semi-trailer truck named Big Hoss takes viewers out on the road and also shows how his cab and trailers work. Big Hoss speaks with a Texan accent. This episode was filmed in Greater Toronto mainly in Bradford, Ontario.
11. At The Garbage Dump
A garbage truck named Trasher explains his job of moving garbage from house to house. Later Whitey & Biffy, garbage trucks along with Little Dozer, a tracked loader and Hooper, a front end loader explain the operations of the transfer station showing how garbage is pushed down a chute and compacted into large semi trailers used for garbage transfer after the trailer of garbage is picked up by Big Red, a garbage transfer truck the story is continued at the dump. Big Red, Pee-Wee, a bulldozer and Spike a compactor explain how the landfill works.
12. At The Cement Yard
A cement yard receives materials for concrete and a cement truck named Big Boy takes his load to a street and to a tall building. He fixes a road as well.
The first six episodes of season one were written by Doug Atkinson and Fiona Zippan (Denzey), while the remaining episodes were written by Bryan A. Auld. The voiceover artists were Alan Marriott, Tee Schneider, Patte Rosebank, Alexander Q. Tichner, and Rupert Friederichs.
Season Two (2004) – Seville Pictures
For season two, the scripts were by Bill Freeman, and the voice artists were Alan Bacchus, Edward Daranyi, Suzanne Hersh, Santo Lupo, Christopher Quinn, Patte Rosebank, Tanya Schneider, Oliver Svendsen, and Chuck Vollmar.
13. In the Snowstorm
Buzz, Stretch, and Ranger, a snow removal crew in Montreal, go out to clear the streets after a big snowstorm. The different tasks involved in this process are detailed by Blower, a snowblower machine, Bobcat, a Bobcat loader, and Big Dude, a snowplow.
14. Deep Underground
Range, Driller, and Crusher, a series of machines operating in a salt mine, explain how to find the salt, scoop it up, and carry it to the surface of the mine. This was filmed in Goderich Harbour, Ontario at the Sifto Canada salt mine on Lake Huron.
15. At the Ski Hill
A number of snowmobiles and other ski hill machines explain how they are able to skim across the surface of the snow without getting stuck. All the groomers are busy at nighttime when the skiers have gone home because it is very dangerous when skiers are around while they work. This episode was filmed in Mont Tremblant, Quebec.
16. In The Sky!
17. In the Forest
Feller, a Feller Buncher machine, explains how he cuts only marked trees in the forest. Skidders then explain how they skid logs to the log loader, which demonstrates its agility between loading logging trucks.
18. At the Sawmill
At a busy sawmill, Jaws, a front-end loader, explains how the trees are turned into lumber and what he does with the cut logs. His friends Cat, Grapple, Buzz, Scoop, and Big Red are many of the other machines that explain how the lumber will soon be turned into wood.
19. All About Recycling
A recycling truck explains how he collects all the recycling and sends it through many other machines, so it can be reused again. Big Blue, the sorting machine, shows how all the recycling is compacted. You also get to see how metal is recycled in a junk yard and how a road can be recycled too. This episode was filmed in Toronto, Ontario and Burlington, Ontario.
20. Building A Truck!
21. Making Waves!
22. Making A Road
Sammy, an excavator, explains how, through the use of machines, a new road is built and prepared for cars to drive over.
23. On the Farm
24. To the Rescue!
25. Trucks, Trucks, Trucks!
26. Buses, Subways, and Trains!
Various public transport vehicles are featured in this episode, including Buddy, an OC Transpo bus, an O-Train, a GO Train and a Toronto subway train, who in turn explain their jobs of picking up the passengers and dropping them off exactly where they want to be.
Season Three (2008) – Loren Media / Seville Pictures
27. Building An Airplane
JetGirl comes to visit the airport and tells her story why she left and was made.
28. Ride The Mountain Rails
Diesel locomotive number 95 dumps rocks in the Canadian river, while three White Pass trains take people on a tour to see the mountains. This was the only episode filmed outside Canada. It was filmed in Skagway, Alaska, White Pass, and Carcross, Yukon.
29. Car Wreckers
30. Laying Down The Pipeline
Excavator, an excavator, shows how he digs deep in the ground for pipelines that are to be installed. His friends show how pipelines are connected and installed into the ground.
31. At The Steel Mill
Slab haulers and other machines show how steel is made. Mainly filmed in Hamilton.
32. Hot Off The Press
Charlie, a printing press and other printing machines show how the Toronto Star newspaper is made.
33. Giant Tow Trucks
Tow Truck shows viewers all of the gear he carries to different jobs and with the help of another tow truck they pull a tanker that has tipped over.
34. Bringing In The Harvest
A group of tractors retrieve tomatoes from the farm and put them into the Factory. Also features Clipper, who clips grapes and a truck who brings them to a factory to make wine.
35. Reach For The Sky
Stretch,a mobile crane, is going to replace an ac on the top of a tall building, with a little help from another crane, Little Brother. Stretch is ready to make the big lift while Gipsy Lady a Sikorsky s64 sky crane helps change ac units on the roof of a factory.
36. Machines Go To School
Backhoes, bulldozers, and other machines go to school to learn about how to dig, push dirt, carry dirt, and other construction procedures. This episode was filmed in Morrisburg, Ontario.
37. Go, Boats, Go!
Features a Canadian Coast Guard hovercraft, "Fast Forward", a Floridian air boat, and "Empress" a modern paddle wheel cruise ship.
38. Under The Waves
Features an Underwater tour Submarine who wants the tour passengers to see the Coral Reef, and a Submersible which goes underwater to find something for the boss, and a Navy Sub who takes kids to see whats inside.
39. Board The Ferry
The Spirit of Vancouver Island, a BCFerries ferry, shows the kids what happens at the dock, the controls of the ship, and other things on the ship.
- Chomp! Crunch! Tear! features episodes: Car Wreckers, Giant Tow Trucks, and Laying Down the Pipeline
- Tremendous Tools features episodes: On the Farm, At the Sawmill and Deep Underground
- Winter Blast features episodes: In the Snowstorm, At the Ski Hill and In the Forest
- Revved Up features episodes: Building an Airplane' , 'Ride the Mountain Rails and Reach for the Sky
- Diggers and Dozers features episodes: At the Construction Site, At the Demolition Site and At the Quarry
- Machines on the Job features episodes: Bringing In the Harvest, At the Steel Mill and Hot off the Press
- Big Wheels Rollin features episodes: At the Cement Yard, Building a Truck and Trucks, Trucks, Trucks
- Lights and Ladders features episodes: At The Fire Hall, At the Garbage Dump and In the City
- Roadways to Runways features episodes: At the Race Track, At the Airport and On the Road
- Boats to the Rescue features episodes: To the Rescue, Making Waves and In the Harbor
- All About Garbage and Recycling features episodes: All About Recycling and at the garbage dump
- Making Tracks features episodes: At the Train Yard, Making a Road and Buses subways, and trains
- Mega Machines features episodes: Go, Boats, Go, Machines Go to School, Under the Waves, Board the Ferry, and All About Recycling
- Learning, Lifting, and Towing features episodes: Machines go to School, Reach for the Sky! and Giant Tow Trucks
- Planes, Trains, & Automobiles features episodes: Building an Airplane, Ride the Mountain Rails, and Car Wreckers
- Ships Ahoy features episodes: Under the Waves, Go boats go, and Board the ferry
- Producing the Goods Features Episodes: Bringing In The Harvest, At The Steel Mill, Hot Off The Press, And Laying Down The Pipeline
- Smash, Mash, and Crash features: 13 mini episodes