If you think Thomas the Tank Engine is vaguely creepy as far as childhood memories go, you’re certainly not alone. But there’s a deeper creepiness hiding here — one which you might not have considered before.
To this day, the physiology of anthropomorphic trains still isn’t taught in schools. And with good reason: not only is it highly speculative, but there is literally no workable theory of train-men which is not also deeply disturbing.
Never mind the fact that Thomas lives in a state of slave-like drudgery, forever confined to the tracks laid out in front of him, eternally hot with the burning coal buried deep within his innards, no matter how much his soul might yearn for a brief moment of respite in the surrounding fields.
Never mind the unspoken fact of his enforced celibacy.
He can’t even scratch an itch on his sad iron husk. All he can do is bring goods from one city to another for his heartless overlords.
Nevertheless, Thomas remains a model of passive docility. He’s the ultimate poster boy for the lumpenproletariat under late capitalism.
But I digress. The real question here is: what are the biological underpinnings of this monstrosity? Is Thomas a mere robot, or is he — as the TV show strongly suggests — a creature of flesh and blood?
Maybe you’ve never considered these questions. But if you have, wonder no more. Because the true horror of Thomas the Tank Engine has now been stripped bare as never before:
No longer just a sterile allegory for the inherent futility of our existence, Thomas now becomes something that we cannot ignore: a caged man, locked into a life of endless suffering on the rails, made even more pathetic by the unshakeable obsequiousness of his servility:
Or if you prefer, Thomas might be something more sinister. Could it be that the most depressing character from the pop culture of your childhood was in fact a wolf in sheep’s clothing, just waiting for the right moment to emerge and strike from his coal-powered cocoon?
Are you ready to see the evil version of Thomas the Tank Engine in his final form? Prepare yourselves:
Some things cannot be unseen. Gaze upon Cthulhu, and shudder.
Ringo Starr is still cool though.