Why Mother's Day was no cause to celebrate for creator of Thunderbirds


By Devesh Tyagi

March 28 2022

Gerry Anderson never put a matriarch in his shows because his own mother rejected him, a new documentary reveals

From Charles Dickens to Sylvia Plath to Eminem, Many of the world's most creative adults had a turbulent childhood.

Now Gerry Anderson, the creator of Thunderbirds and Stingray, all of whose shows have no mother character, can be added to the list.

Previously unbroadcast interviews reveal that Anderson's work lacked matriarchal figures

because Anderson was so traumatised by his own relationship with his mother.

A forthcoming documentary drawns on more than 30 hours of interviews with  Anderson

recorded years before his death in 2012, but not released until now.

He had found worldwide success, delighting generations of fans with 18 series and four feature films

Which included Space 1999 and Caption Scarlet. But Anderson had never got over the death of Lionel

his older brother, a handsome and heroic pilot who had died during the second world war

he also never recovered from the shock of hearing their mother, Debbie say: Why was it Lionel?

Gerrry was then 12, and had idolised his brother, who was 20 when his plane was shot down in 1942.

Their mother had always focused her love in Lionel rather than on Gerry or her husband, Joe

Whom she repeatedly humiliated during the course of their marriage. Anderson recalled in those interviews

My mother was always saying how she hated the marriage.

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