Equipment & Vehicles
Thunderbird Shadow
Image tb shadow
Type: Stealth Ship
Affiliation: International Rescue
Main Operator: Kayo

Thunderbird S, with "S" standing for "Shadow", is a top secret International Rescue stealth aircraft. Coloured black and piloted by Kayo, Thunderbird Shadow is used for recon missions and for keeping the security of Tracy Island.

Although considered an official Thunderbird, it is not used primarily for rescue missions like the main five, and is instead used for missions dealing with stopping villains and keeping International Rescue secure, much like Lady Penelope in FAB 1.


TBS was designed specifically for stealth capabilities, and can fly extremely quietly with incredible agility. This ability to seemingly appear and disappear like a shadow has led to the craft being aptly named "Thunderbird Shadow". Its instruments include a light/optic sensor and multi-purpose launchers. The cockpit is actually a motorbike, and can be lowered from underneath to be dropped off to the ground in situations where aerial pursuit isn't practical while remaining in remote control with the main 'body'. For good hiding places, TBS can land on walls and ceilings, or underneath other aircraft, using two underside claws. Thunderbird Shadow also carries built-in futuristic cloaking technology, allowing it to become completely invisible both to the naked eye and on radar.

In "Power Play", Thunderbird Shadow's engines are upgraded, allowing it to carry one of Thunderbird 2's pods to a danger zone in order to deliver new equipment in the event that the contents of the original pod are inadequate for an escalating rescue.

Specifications Edit

Length: 52 feet

Height: 6.1 feet

Wingspan: 26 feet

Cruising speed: 12'123 m.p.h

Maximum speed: 14:789 m.p.h


Ring of Fire: Part 2Edit

It was first seen at the end of Ring of Fire Part 2, where Brains and the Tracy brothers introduce it to Kayo shortly after its creation. Once everyone leaves and Kayo is alone with it, she takes it out for a test flight around Tracy Island. 


In Fireflash, although not shown, Thunderbird Shadow was referenced when Kayo was travelling in the Fireflash, Kayo mentioning that the ship was in for repairs and hence the reason she was required to travel commercial air.


In EOS, Thunderbird S makes a quick cameo. Alan watches Kayo flying in it as he is miserably stuck in the villa cleaning. Alan warns Kayo not to return and to keep flying, as she may end up cleaning too.


In Skyhook, Thunderbird Shadow was suggested as a means of rescuing the damaged weather station CIR.R.U.S. after design faults damaged the other three Thunderbirds while attempting a rescue, but Scott eliminated it as an option as Kayo was away on a training mission, looking for a lead on The Hood and the ship lacked the means of getting close to the station anyway.

Touch And GoEdit

In Touch And Go, Kayo used the motorbike to chase down one of The Hood's Henchmen. Later, Thunderbird S was finally seen being launched from above Thunderbird 2's hangar (though Kayo entering the craft was unseen) so that Kayo could infiltrate C.A.T.C.H. and discover who shut down the computer that observes all of the air traffic in North America. Upon finding out who was behind it and why, Kayo flew Thunderbird S towards the Hood's ship, clinging onto the underside of the Alsterene tanks. After confronting the Hood, Kayo escaped with the Alsterene. One of the Hood's Henchmen fired a laser disrupter at Thunderbird S, separating it from the tanks. The Hood managed to grapple onto Kayo's ship before the Alsterene tanks hit the ground and exploded.


In Undercover, Thunderbird Shadow was used as backup in an undercover sting operation to retrieve a Repulser Magnet Array. Kayo pursued Banino who has Parker captive in a stolen GDF plane. After being attacked by volleys of missiles fired from the plane, Kayo pursues Banino who has ejected from the plane in a hang glider. After the dealer showed her secrets and fled, Kayo is seen back in Thunderbrid S saying that she will tell the Tracys about her uncle when they are together.


In Legacy, Kayo took Thunderbird Shadow to the Great Victoria Desert in Australia to pick up a motorbike rider. At the scene, Kayo found out that the bike was airdropped before returning to Tracy Island, realising that the multiple rescue calls were part of a trap set by the Hood so that he could infiltrate the island while it was unprotected.


In Earthbreaker, Kayo accompanied Scott and Virgil to investigate the threat of new villain the Mechanic. After the Mechanic's equipment forced Thunderbird 2 to withdraw, Scott remained as a distraction in Thunderbird 1 to rescue the civilians in danger, while Kayo landed Thunderbird Shadow on the Mechanic's machine in stealth mode, allowing her to infiltrate and disrupt his machinery.


In Colony, Kayo went on Thunderbird Shadow to retrieve Captain Lee Taylor from his retirement location to Tracy Island, so he can help Scott and Alan help a space vehicle, the Helius, transporting colonists to Mars. 

Up From The DepthsEdit

In Up from the Depths Part 2, Kayo takes Thunderbird Shadow to try and track the Mechanic's remote-control signature to his current base, but although she, Lady Penelope and Parker track the signal, they only find another decoy device.


  • Thunderbird Shadow was designed by Shoji Kawamori, best known for creating the Macross franchise. 
  • Early sketches of Thunderbird Shadow bare a striking similarity in design to the alternate mode of Cyclonus, an evil Decepticon from the original Transformers series in the 1980's. Incidentally, Kawamori designed many of the original Diaclone toys which would go on to become part of the Transformers line.
  • It is technically the counterpart of the Ladybird Jet from the original series, as that plane belonged to Kayo's counterpart Tin-Tin. However, unlike Thunderbird Shadow, the Ladybird Jet was not considered a Thunderbird, or even an International Rescue vehicle.
    • Thunderbird Shadow could also be considered the counterpart to Thunderbird 6, as it is the sixth Thunderbird, so to speak. However, Brains was the pilot of Thunderbird 6, although Tin-Tin could fly it, very well in fact.

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