“ Brand: Mattel / Type: Figurines „
I have to admit when my son picked up this crane I didn't have a clue who it was. After watching many episodes and films I struggled to place Kelly, but my son soon filled me in on the details. He is an older engine from the old style episodes but apparently is starting to make an appearance in the newer ones. I also made the mistake of calling him a girl, and again I was quickly corrected that it is in fact a boy. It is a take and play train that is designed to be used on the smaller tracks. We also find they work on the wooden brio tracks we own, and the Tesco simple wooden set.
Kelly is a blue and yellow crane, and while he does not often appear in episodes my son instantly knew who it was. Kelly is modelled well on the character from the series, with a kind face, blue and yellow detailing and a movable crane arm. There is no hook on the crane, but there is a rounded magnet at the end of the arm that can actually pick things up. Of course there are movable wheels so he can be pushed along the track, and his crane arm moves as an added feature.
My son was very keen to get to work and he loves the movable arm so this was the first part he set to work on. While you may think a movable arm is not that fantastic, my 6 year old son thought it was brilliant he could actually pick things up with the magnet. It makes loading and unloading at different stops of the track so much more fun and for that reason it holds his attention for longer periods than other characters. My son did not mind that he was not one of the main characters, and still managed to make lots of stories up focusing on Kelly.
The magnet is not strong enough to pick up trains, but we have a number of cargo loads designed for Chuggington sets, and we find they work well with this crane. My son loves that this is a push along vehicle that he can control, but it still has an interactive feature that makes it a little more interesting than other characters in the series. The train moves along the track easily with the free moving wheels, and it can also be pushed along flat surfaces without any tracks. My son has the take and play mine set and this character fits perfectly with that. It is great for encouraging role play and pushing the imagination.
My son was a little disappointed there was no hook on Kelly's crane. In the series and the Track master version of Kelly both have a movable hook. With this take play version it is a rounded magnet rather than a hook, and while my son loves that he can actually pick up metal objects with it he still misses the presence of a hook. My son loves this toy, but if it had been an exact copy he would love it more.
The durability of the train is fantastic and unlike other take and play engines this only has a few scratches to the paint work. It has been used a lot more than other characters, and it is still in really good condition. Our toys always have to be very tough as they are used by four young children, and this has had hours of use without any deterioration. The wheels are larger than the other take and play engines we own which seem to appeal to my son too.
I would recommend this take and play Kelly to anyone with a Thomas fan. While he is not an overly known character, my son really enjoys the variation as it is a crane rather than another train. It can still be pushed along the tracks just like the other trains, and the magnet on the crane arm really appeals to my son. He loves making up stories with this train, and generally playing on his take and play sets. It is very durable and has been a great addition to my sons set. I would say this is worth the £8 it costs to purchase as it does receive a lot of use. We purchased ours from Tesco, but searching in Google it is available at Amazon and other toy stores.