Big Mickey was the biggest crane at the Steel Company yard.
Big Mickey loaded steel for the Z-Stacks and the Star Fleet when they were completing for the steel contact.
Later, he loads the naval tramper Kraka-Toa with explosives from the Z-Stacks. When Bluenose arrived and asserted that his load was before Zorran's, Big Mickey was still in the process of unloading Zorran's barge, which would have been dangerous to move. Bluenose bellowed orders at Big Mickey to give priority to him and forced his way into Zorran's unsafe barge, causing a massive harbour fire. While the tugs are able to get clear, Big Mickey's dock goes up in flames, collapses and the big crane was lost in the water.
Big Mickey was known to be supportive towards the Star Fleet, as he rooted for them in their competition against the Z-Stacks for the steel contract and according to Zorran, he was clearly his own boss as he noted that "Nobody tells Big Mickey what to do!"
After the show's production ended, Big Mickey was recycled as a background prop for Brendam Docks in Thomas & Friends. His most notable role was in Edward's Brass Band, where he accidentally knocked Edward off the track while unloading a boiler from a ship, though he wasn't referred to by name.
Like the other former TUGS characters and props, Big Mickey was also carried over to the new CGI series.
In New Crane on the Dock from the 21st season of Thomas & Friends, Big Mickey gained a face and the ability to speak again. Upon speaking up towards the end of the episode, he was thrown off by everyone staring at him due to the fact that no one on Sodor had ever heard him talk before.
Big Mickey is based on a 350-ton Hammerhead crane. He most strongly resembles the US Navy's League Island Crane built in 1919 by the McMyler-Interstate Company for the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard. Weighing 3,500 tons, it was the world's largest crane at the time.
Thomas & Friends
- Sunshine (cameo)
- Pirate (cameo)
- Regatta (cameo)
- Warrior (cameo)
- High Tide
- Quarantine (cameo)
- Ghosts (cameo, full role cut)
- Jinxed (cameo)
- High Winds (cameo)
- His final fate differs between the final version and the director's cut; in the final version, Captain Star says he was sheltered from the fire by shallow waters. In the director's cut, no such narration is heard, and it is assumed that Big Mickey drowns and perishes.
- Big Mickey, or another crane resembling him, was relocated to Lucky's Yard for almost half of the series.
- His model was recycled and used in Thomas & Friends, beginning in its third season episode Thomas, Percy and the Dragon. Out of all the TUGS characters, he has the longest post-TUGS lifespan, along with S.S. Vienna and the other dockyard cranes, some of which are on display at Drayton Manor, England, United Kingdom, where a portion of the Thomas the Tank Engine & Friends TV models currently reside.
- Out of all the TUGS characters carried over to Thomas & Friends, Big Mickey is the only one to bear their original name.
- Since Thomas & Friends switched from using live-action to CGI, Big Mickey's model was kept in storage by HiT Entertainment/Mattel Creations. The companies loaned their model to be on display at the Star Tugs Exhibition during 24th-26th August 2019.
- Originally in TUGS, Big Mickey was going to have a face that would cover his entire front end. There was only a prototype and Big Mickey instead used a megaphone.
- Of course, Big Mickey did gain a face in Thomas & Friends with a different design.
- Throughout Thomas & Friends, Big Mickey's model underwent several changes:
- He was repainted a warmer shade of grey.
- His megaphone was removed.
- In Season 5, his top railing became thinner and his walkway became more detailed.
- In Season 6, he had riveted steel sides, his hoist end became covered, his wheelhouse walkway became square and he gained a new base.
- In Season 21, he gained a face, has the ability to speak again, and is referred to by name again.