|Thomas & Friends character|
|First appearance||Thomas and Friends as Peter Sam)|
|Voiced by||Steve Kynman (UK/US)|
|Number||4 (Narrow gauge engine)|
Peter Sam is a fictional steam locomotive in The Railway Series children's books by the Rev. W. Awdry and the spin-off TV series Thomas and Friends. Peter Sam lives and works on the Skarloey Railway on the Island of Sodor as engine No. 4.
Railway Series history
Peter Sam first appeared in The Railway Series in the story Sir Handel. This story is set just after Peter Sam and Sir Handel had been purchased by the Thin Controller. Peter Sam (originally named Stuart on the Mid Sodor Railway) was renamed and repainted in the Skarloey Railway livery of red with blue lining.
Peter Sam holds a lot of respect for Skarloey, and often tries his best to prevent Sir Handel from getting into trouble. He is a friendly engine who aims to please, and is highly popular among the coaches. The trucks also respect him because he only bumps the trucks that misbehave.
After an accident on the incline when collecting slate trucks, Peter Sam had difficulty steaming. His funnel was knocked off in a tunnel by an icicle. He was soon fitted with an experimental funnel (a Giesl ejector) which enables him to take heavier loads. At first, the others teased him for it, but they soon learned how it made work much easier for him, and now they even wish they had one like it. Peter Sam's friendliness is what keeps the other engines working happily with him.
Peter Sam in the TV series
For the next few seasons, his character waxed and waned. After being absent with the other Narrow Gauge engines for Season 8, he returned with Skarloey, Rheneas, Rusty, and Duncan the following year, starring in the episode The Magic Lamp. He still retains qualities from the books, and has had his flattened funnel since the Special Funnel adaptation in 1995. In recent episodes, Peter Sam has made cameos and other minor roles, but in Season 11 he made a couple of speaking roles. In Season 12, Peter Sam stars in Mountain Marvel where he finds a statue of Proteus.
Unlike the Skarloey Railway of the books, where all the locomotives are painted red, in the TV series each is painted a different colour: Peter Sam retains his original green colour from The Mid-Sodor Railway. Also, Peter Sam's Giesl Injector was more square flat than in the RWS. For his CGI appearance, though, he has an accurate Giesl.
From Spring 2012 onwards, Peter Sam is now currently voiced by Steve Kynman (UK/US) in the CGI version of the series in both sides of the atlantic, respectively.
Peter Sam was made available as models for most of the major ranges, including: Ertl (die-cast model), Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway, Take-Along Thomas (die-cast model), My First Thomas (plastic), Tomy Trackmaster and Mega Bloks plastic buildable model.
Peter Sam is based on the locomotive Edward Thomas which works at the Talyllyn Railway in Gwynedd, Wales. This locomotive is a modified "Tattoo" class, built in 1921 by Kerr Stuart & Co at the California Works in Stoke-on-Trent for the 2 ft 3 in (686 mm) gauge Corris Railway in Merionethshire, where it also carried the number 4. After the Corris closed in 1948 it was purchased (and named) by the Talyllyn in 1951. A new "Tattoo" class loco commenced work on the Corris Railway in 2005.
In the Railway Series books, Peter Sam visited the Talyllyn Railway. This was in commemoration of the fact that the Talyllyn Railway repainted Edward Thomas to represent Peter Sam.
This caused some controversy when Egmont, the publishers of the Railway Series books, complained that this was a violation of copyright. A compromise was eventually reached whereby the Talyllyn Railway could run engines as Railway Series characters, but the faces attached to them had to be different from those depicted in the books.