The Polar Express Wiki

"It Takes Two" is a song performed by Smokey and Steamer that was meant to be featured in the film The Polar Express. It was one of the first scenes created for the characters Smokey and Steamer.[1] However, it was cut for time when the filmmakers thought the film would flow better without it. Since they believed that Michael Jeter, who passed away during the film's production, did a brilliant job performing Smokey and Steamer for the song, they found it difficult to let the scene go, so it was included as a bonus feature on the film's home video release as a tribute.


The scene starts when Hero Boy lands in the tender of the locomotive and finds Hero Girl driving the train. Hero Girl lets Hero Boy blow the whistle, but the moment he does so, the locomotive starts making hissing noises. Hero Girl tries to fix it by turning two controls, which she claims Steamer told her to do, though nothing happens.

Smokey and Steamer return to the engine room and stop the noise. They ask what happened and Hero Girl says she did what they told her to do. Smokey and Steamer explain the two controls had to be turned "together" and break into a song about the importance of working together. This leaves Hero Girl confused as she was alone in the engine room. Smokey and Steamer suggest Hero Boy, then introduce themselves and ask how he got to the engine room. Hero Boy says he was brought by the King of the North Pole, the mention of whom frightens the engineer and fireman. They run away and pull down a curtain in front of the cab's exit.

The children walk past the curtain when a light shines on it and Smokey and Steamer perform a shadow puppet show telling the story of the King of the North Pole. One Christmas Eve, a Hobo named King decided to ride on the roof of Polar Express for free when suddenly, as the snow started to fall, the train went down a hill towards Flat Top Tunnel. King, unable to get off the train in time, is killed due to the tunnel's low clearance. Some say his ghost still rides the train every year on Christmas Eve. Hero Girl does not believe the story, but Hero Boy insists he saw King on the roof and disappear at the tunnel. Hero Girl suggests he might be a guardian angel.

Smokey and Steamer suddenly remember that they have to change the headlamp, so they leave the children to drive the train and once more remind them to work together.


Put it all together
Put it all together
Two heads are always better than one
Together, yes, together makes it run
It takes a half a ton of coal
Hot rush to two of air
A tiny spark to light her up.
Tender loving care.
Add a little water.
And a pinch or two of time
And long before you know it,
The steam's a-comin' through the line.
Put it all together
Put it all together
Two heads are always better than one
Together, yes, together makes it fun
Put it all together
Two heads are always better than one!
Two heads are better than one!


  • A similar scene is featured as one of the levels in the video game.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Schaub, David (November 15, 2005). "'The Polar Express Diary': Part 4 -- Keyframe Animation". Animation World Network.
Original songs The Polar Express When Christmas Comes to Town Rockin' on Top of the World Believe Hot Chocolate Spirit of the Season It Takes Two
Christmas carols Santa Claus is Comin' to Town White Christmas Winter Wonderland It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas Silver Bells Here Comes Santa Claus (Right Down Santa Claus Lane) Frosty the Snowman Deck the Halls Good King Wenceslas I'll Be Home for Christmas Jingle Bells
Score Seeing is Believing Suite from the Polar Express
Albums Original Motion Picture Soundtrack For Your Consideration