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DejaQ
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31 Mar 2007, 8:33 am

I was on Google (or maybe Yahoo. Who cares?) and I found this message board about autism. One guy mentioned that his son was obsessed with it, and said that he's heard of a lot of kids on the Autistic spectrum have an interest in it. The discussion further went on to speculate that autistic children are drawn to the exaggerated facial expressions and possibly that Reverend Awdry, who wrote the books upon which the show was based, was in the Autistic Spectrum.

I was obsessed pretty early on. It was one factor in diagnosing my Asperger's Syndrome. Has anyone else heard anything of this?



BigT
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31 Mar 2007, 8:44 am

Well, I used to absolutely love Thomas The Tank Engine when I was very young, but I stopped liking it altogether when I started to get bullied for liking him at school (I was probably about 7 or 8 years old), around the time when peer pressure is everywhere. I did read somewhere about autistics/aspergers being very fond of TTTE, but there was little information around it and it was a while ago when I did read it.



CockneyRebel
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31 Mar 2007, 9:02 am

I like Bulgy.



Ian
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31 Mar 2007, 9:10 am

I used to love Thomas the Tank Engine. I remember one scene where he runs off the rails and into some waters and his eyes spun around and around. I found it hilarious. I'd watch it over and over.

Now I think about it I can see what you mean about the exaggerated facial expressions. Especially since a lot of the shots are of the locomotives with a massive static grin on their face, with the narration over the top.



poopylungstuffing
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31 Mar 2007, 9:10 am

Ah gee..the kid I used to nanny was completely obsessed with Thomas! He must be about 7 by now and lives in another state. He was a super hyperactive "punk rock" toddler...(both his parents were tattoo artist/alt. lifestyle types)....I wonder what he is like now. He used to wear the blue tattoo transfers all the time to imitate his parents...and he used to want to run and run in circles for as long as possible...and one of his favorite games was where he would pummel himself along the wall in the hallway shouting Moshy Moshy Moshy!...I am just rambling...but boy did he love Thomas!



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31 Mar 2007, 9:11 am

I liked it when I was young, but because it was a train... I liked trains XD


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31 Mar 2007, 9:18 am

Big big big time!

My son was absolutely obsessed with Thomas, from a very very very young age. It was the very first toy he ever went "nuts" for, and until pokemon came along when he was 5, was his sole interest. NOthing else could engage him.

My mother went to a hobby store with him, and usually he was oblivious to his environment. He saw the thomas in the window going in, and while my mother was shoping "escaped" to the thomas. They found him right up in the window display playing with it! He was just turned 2.

We decided to buy him some thomas trains and track that christmas, but the sales lady got us to buy Brio instead, she said it was more appealing to younger kids like my son. Honestly, I don't know what she was smoking.

He "liked" the brio, but by January, made it very clear he NEEDED thomas! (not even 2 1/2 yet). We bought him a few trains, and he was happy. He also fell deeply inlove with the show. It was on nearly 24 / 7 in our house for 3 years. Not sure looking back it was a good idea to endulge him like that, but he appeared almost disturbed if it was not on in the background.

Slowely, he built up a massive collection. I met other kids who really liked Thomas too, however he was definately the "most interested".

He would roleplay the thomas show. He got all his values and morals from the show. (not a bad thing, it is good that way). He seemed to have difficulty separating people from trains. If someone was mean to him, he would say, "you are not a very nice engine!"


It totally took him over for about 3 years. Then, he stayed co-obsesed with it and pokemon for another 3 years. Right up to 8 years old, he loved his trains. I think he only moved away due to peer pressure. 8 year olds don't want to play with wooden trains! Eventually he got it! Transitioning him to model trains really helped.

I worked in a toystore, and all the kids "liked" thomas, but some parents, those that seemed nevous and jittery, and almost seemed sheepish about their kids, like they where hiding something, or embarassed about something, would explain that their child was "obsessed" with thomas. I remember these kids typically seemed a little more introverted.

I was disapointed when my two younger children did not buy into the thomas thing like my older son. They seem "like it". but have an equal interest in other toys, like cars, trucks, or sports. (with my daughter, dolls). They get irritated too if I leave a thomas DVD in for more then 2 rounds. My older son would meltdown if I took it out!

The funny thing is, I stimmed on the videos along with my son. I would become intranced in the world of sodor island, spending hours watching, sometimes the same video over and over. As an adult, I loved Thomas too!

My mom would yell at me for not "getting with it" and "wasting my time". Really though, when thomas was on, I was lost to this world. Hearing that the good Rev. was on the ASD scale, it all makes sence! It is not just the faces, but also the voices, even the speech, it is all exagerated and captivating!



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31 Mar 2007, 9:24 am

I used to love this locomotive with a face that I had on my romper suit, but TTT scares the crap out of me. He looks so menacing with that grimace on his face :(



DejaQ
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31 Mar 2007, 9:57 am

CockneyRebel wrote:
I like Bulgy.


I might have known. :lol:



MishLuvsHer2Boys
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31 Mar 2007, 10:24 am

Talking to Dr. Michael Powers from the Yale Child Study Center who wrote a book on Asperger's at one of his workshops and he talked about how there could be a DSM just for "Thomas the Tank Engine" Autism.



TruenoBlues
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31 Mar 2007, 12:33 pm

I used to love it, and I found out that Mr. Conductor was God (George Carlin, blessed be his name)! !!


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31 Mar 2007, 12:52 pm

I liked it.



Lightning88
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31 Mar 2007, 1:39 pm

I could never get into trains. However, when I was little (and still now), I loved Disney animals!



KurtmanJP
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31 Mar 2007, 1:56 pm

Lightning88 wrote:
I could never get into trains. However, when I was little (and still now), I loved Disney animals!


I'm still a fan of 101 Dalmatians related things. I'm also still obsessed with SWAT Kats, Road Rovers and Sonic The Hedgehog in many forms.


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markaudette
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31 Mar 2007, 2:39 pm

If you ask me, it kind of freaks me out.

Thomas the Tank Engine gives me the heebie jeebies.



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31 Mar 2007, 4:00 pm

My nephew who is 5 is so obsessed with Thomas the Tank Engine! He is just now getting
into cars as well. But for a long time it was just Thomas and nothing else. I'm pretty
sure he has AS. He talks like a little adult, is sensitive to certain things, and is really
smart for his age. He is obsessed with me too, my Mom says when she watches him, he plays make believe and he pretends he is me :?


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