!!!The series and first two movies (1965-68)

* {{Defictionalization}}: [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Rescue_Corps There's an actual International Rescue,]] which began operations in 1985 and named itself after the organization found in this series. That's about where it ends, though; there are (sadly) no Tracy boys and (even more sadly) no ''Thunderbird'' craft to be found. (This could also explain why IR is referred to all but once as "the ''Thunderbirds''" in the 2004 LiveActionAdaptation.)
* DemandOverload: When Creator/TheBBC began re-running ''Series/{{Thunderbirds}}'' in 1992 (after it had been off the air for several years) stores quickly sold out of Tracy Island toys. As a compromise, ''Series/BluePeter'' came up with a build-it-yourself version.
* ExecutiveMeddling:
** A positive example when Lew Grade ordered the series be made with hour-long episodes. This required the series to delve into more sophisticated plot and characters to make up for the time, which made the series a cult classic.
** Sadly, a negative example from Lew Grade, and an unintentional one at that: The show was axed from airwaves after Grade's rather unsuccessful trip to America, where all three major networks were bidding on the show. Thanks in part to Grade's playing each network off the other and trying to raise the price, when one network dropped out, [[FollowTheLeader the others followed suit]], and Grade felt that without American involvement the show was too expensive to produce.
** Further series were denied after TheMovie (actually ''two'' movies) bombed, although this still had [[Series/CaptainScarletAndTheMysterons some positive effects]].
** ITV holds the rights to the series and refused to return them to Gerry Anderson or allowing him to either remake or continue the series à la ''Captain Scarlet''. By 2011, this was resolved, allowing the new series to proceed.
* FakeAmerican: All voice actors (save Virgil's, who quit after season one) were either British, Australian or Canadian, while most of the main cast was (implied to be) American.
** The Tracys were going to be British but then it was settled that they would be primarily American was so that the series would fair well in the U.S. because at that time the U.S. wasn't that accepting of British T.V. Sadly, the series became obscure in the U.S. and to make matters worse, the most attention anything related to the name of "Thunderbirds" was the [[InNameOnly 2004 film]].
* KeepCirculatingTheTapes: Good luck watching ''Thunderbirds'' in its original uncut format. Six episodes were edited into a trio of [[CompilationMovie compilation films]] for American broadcast in the early 1980's. While the remaining episodes were later released with no major edits, the only way to see the outstanding six were to tape them during the 1990's reruns, or import copies from countries where the episodes were released unedited (such as Australia).
** After securing the rights to the series in 1999, Carlton hastily remastered and released ''Thunderbirds'' on DVD and VHS. Unfortunately, while the films were replaced with their original counterparts, every episode featured new (and sometimes incredibly loud) sound effects. In the case of ''"Trapped In The Sky"'' and ''"The Perils Of Penelope"'', both were given new title cards.
** Even the Blu Ray releases weren't immune to pruning. In a bizarre attempt to sell the series in widescreen, ITV cut off the top and bottom of the fullscreen prints.
* TalkingToYourself: David Graham voices Gordon, Brains, Parker and Kyrano.
* TechnologyMarchesOn: A given in the Gerry Anderson shows. You have space stations, hypersonic rocket planes, and a mobile computer the size of a grand piano!
* ThrowItIn: During filming for the episode "Trapped in the Sky", Elevator Car No. 3 went out of control. The production team decided to include this in the episode, adding a shot of it crashing into a nearby airliner.
* UnintentionalPeriodPiece: Given this was made in the '60s, this was going to be inevitable. Modern British viewers may be a little miffed at the main airport being called "London Airport", unaware that back in the day, this was actually the name for Heathrow Airport before Stansted and Gatwick acquired "London" status. There are also several references to Cape Kennedy.
* WorkingTitle: ''International Rescue''

!!!The 2004 movie

* BreakawayPopHit: Busted's "Thunderbirds Are Go", which got to Number 1 in the UK charts -- and won Record of the Year for 2004.
* CreatorBacklash: The original series' creator Gerry Anderson initially disliked the film, calling it the "biggest load of crap I've seen in my entire life". However, co-creator Sylvia Anderson had a more positive reaction.
* CreatorKiller: Screenwriter William Osborne's career has never recovered from being credited on this '''and''' ''Film/FatSlags'' in the same year.
* CreatorPreferredAdaptation: Shockingly enough co-creator Sylvia Anderson loved the film.
* DisownedAdaptation: Gerry Anderson himself is on record as saying that ''Film/TeamAmericaWorldPolice'' -- a movie he didn't entirely approve of -- was closer in spirit to the original show.
* RetroactiveRecognition: Vanessa Hudgens of course.
* TroubledProduction: Had been in DevelopmentHell since the mid 90s. It was originally conceived as a CGI film, inspired by the success of ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'' and then later as a vehicle for the Baldwin brothers. Gerry Anderson was brought on as a creative consultant but let go when the studio felt that they had enough people on the creative team already. Eventually it entered production with a much younger target audience in mind. Three major script changes also happened during production. Jonathan Frakes did manage to knock $3 million off the budget due to his fast shooting style, but that seems to open up another can of worms altogether.

!!!''Turbocharged Thunderbirds''

* PromotedFanboy: Composer Ed Potokar was a fan of the original ''Thunderbirds'' as a kid.