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"Recharge" is the 18th episode of Thunderbirds Are Go!. It was broadcast on November 28th, 2015.


The episode begins with the Thunderbird craft racing home with Alan first, Scott second, Virgil third and Gordon last. Deemed the last one who entered the hangar, Gordon has to do the dishes for a week. As the Tracys sit and rest, John contacts them about a power station in the Arctic Circle known as the Aurora Generator. The generator harvests energy from the Northern Lights, but the failsafe which discharges excess energy has malfunctioned, heading for a massive electrical explosion when critical. Scott and Virgil set off to the Arctic, accompanied by MAX who was reconfigured with caterpillar tracks for Arctic conditions.

On final approach, Thunderbirds 1 and 2 suffer magnetic interference. They land a safe distance away where Virgil and Scott configure two Pod Explorers, with Virgil and MAX in one and Scott in the other, to reach the generator. After Virgil warns that they were surrounded by ice hazards and head north of a nearby ice cliff, Scott drives his own pod along a different route only to end up crashing it. After Virgil picks him up, MAX is tied to the back of their pod so he can withstand temperatures as low as minus 150 degrees Celsius.

Later, the Pod Explorer drives through an ice fog and over a field of cracks. Brains explains that this is perfect for MAX's scanning. As Max plots a safe course over the ice field, he falls down a deep crevasse. Virgil manages to pull him back up just in time and insists that they wait until the fog clears. Inside a special thermal tent, the brothers talk about Scott’s recklessness and he says is that he was just doing what their father did. Virgil insists that keeping their family safe is also important and Scott says keeping busy with his team is the only he has to keep him from going crazy.

As the pod approaches the Aurora Generator, Brains explains that when the generator explodes, the Earth’s poles will flip, causing weather changes resulting in global starvation. When Scott, Virgil and MAX reach the core of the generator, they manage to save the lone technician from falling when she tries to get a special grounding receiver to the top of the generator. Scott manages to place the receiver at the top but gets thrown back by an electrical discharge. Brains then explains that they can use MAX due to his conductivity rated up to 2.5 gigawatts. As Scott, Virgil, and the technician retreat, MAX successfully plugs in the receiver, grounding the excess energy and sacrificing his life in the process.

Back on Tracy Island, Virgil and Scott show Brains a small data chip and Brains says that the chip is MAX; everything else is spare parts. As Brains heads off to his lab to get MAX some legs, Scott and Virgil fall asleep before John contacts them about another situation. Gordon says that he and Alan will take this one with Alan saying "Last one to the launch pad gets laundry duty for a week!" Meanwhile, Brains repairs MAX and asks about extreme heat which MAX is very excited about.



Virgil: "Thunderbird 2 and 4 back to launch. And technically speaking, my body entered the hangar first."
Scott: "Well, looks like we have our winner, Gordon."
Gordon: "Ugh, dishes, here I come. Better not be lasagna tonight."

Brains: "The energy core should be just through those walls."
Virgil: "And the engineer?"
Brains: "M-MAX has located a heartbeat. She's inside the main shut off area."
Scott: "She's still here?"
Virgil: "Pushing to the limit. Remind you of anyone?"

Brains: "You really shouldn't get emotionally attached to your equipment, gentlemen."

International Rescue Equipment Used



  • This episode marks the second time a pod vehicle has been destroyed, after the two Elevator Cars in Fireflash.
  • Strangely, the two pods used in this episode do not match the appearance of the Pod Explorer from Breakdown, although they go by the same name. This is due to a reused voice recording from Breakdown, first said by Virgil when launching the Pod Explorer in that episode.
  • This is the first time that MAX is used in a mission.


  • When Scott and Virgil return to the island, one of the scenes has the background in reverse.

Foreign Titles

  • Dutch: Opladen (Load)
  • French: Ressource d'énergie (Energy Resource)
  • Spanish: Recarga
  • Japanese: マックス 北極圏へ出動!(MAX Dispatched to the Arctic Circle!)
  • Arabic: قدرات ماكس