New Thunderbirds Merchandise in 2009

It’s just been announced that Gerry Anderson’s classic puppet series Thunderbirds has been re-licensed to Sci Fi Channel UK.

SCI FI has renewed its license for the 32-episode show, for launch in the spring, and has also taken two additional Gerry Anderson series: all 30 half hour episodes of the junior spy adventure series Joe 90 and the earliest Anderson colour series, Stingray.

New Gerry Anderson series-related merchandise inspired by Thunderbirds, Joe 90 and Stingray is also in development, for release next year.

The three series will broadcast from spring 2009 as part of the network’s primetime line-up.

Meanwhile, BBC Two will re-air Stingray: The Reunion Party at 4.00pm on 28 December, a special compilation episode first shown earlier this year utilising footage found in Japan.

The screening will be followed by the one-hour documentary All About Thunderbirds also screened earlier in 2008. In it, Anderson, together with the show’s cast, crew and fans, reflect back on the series and its legacy. The documentary will be followed by a screening of the Thunderbirds episode Attack of the Alligators.

Both Thunderbirds films are set for early morning showings on Channel 4 on Monday 29th and Tuesday 30th, with another chance to catch Attack of the Alligators on New Year’s Day on BBC2.

The British TV activity comes as ITV Global gears up to relaunch the Thunderbirds consumer-products campaign next year and launch new products for Joe 90 and Stingray.

Thunderbirds has been entertaining the world for decades and the trusted brand continues to deliver new and dedicated fans to all it touches, including consumer products — which currently features fashion, toys, Blu-ray DVD and gaming,” said Giles Ridge, the head of brand and product development at ITV Global Entertainment in a press release. “We’re looking forward to developing new and exciting licensing partnerships with Thunderbirds for 2009.”

As we reported earlier this month, the new merchandise includes collections of strips from the classic 1960s comics TV Century 21 and Lady Penelope, which are being published by Reynolds and Hearn in the UK.

Thunderbirds fans may be interested in joining Fanderson, the Gerry Anderson fan club. More info: www.fanderson.org.uk

John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a “freelance comics operative”, currently working as a freelance editor for TITAN COMICS, as Creative Consultant on the new DAN DARE audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the LAKES INTERNATIONAL COMIC ART FESTIVAL and LANCASTER COMICS DAY.

John has worked in British comics publishing for over 30 years, starting out at Marvel UK, where he edited a number of the Genesis 1992 books with Paul Neary. His numerous credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines, where he was Managing Editor.

He also edited STRIP Magazine and worked as an editor on several audio comics for ROK Comics, including TEAM M.O.B.I.L.E. and THE BEATLES STORY.

Most recently he is writing CRUCIBLE as a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and DEATH DUTY and SKOW DOGS with Dave Hailwood for the digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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