Endeavour: Series 4, Episode 4, ‘Harvest’. A review with Literary References, Locations Info’ etc. !!SPOILERS!!


!!SPOILERS!! !!SPOILERS!! In this post I will be not only be reviewing the episode but also looking at the locations, music, literary references and other interesting facts and trivia within the episode. So, if you haven’t seen the episode, look away now.

Endeavour: Series 4, Episode 4, HARVEST.

First shown on the 29th January 2017 in the UK.

Chronologically this would be episode 17.

Directed by  Jim Loach. 



A body is found near marshland and is presumed to be the body of the botanist, Matthew Laxman. Matthew Laxman disappeared in the area five years before and with the finding of his glasses DI Thursday wants to open the cold case.

The disappearance of Matthew Laxman leads Morse and Thursday through beautiful countryside, a nuclear power plant and the beautiful, seemingly sinister village of Bramford.

Meanwhile, Joan Thursday is found by her father and she must make decisions as to where her future lies.


I am sure I am not the first to mention the resemblance of this episode to the, in my opinion over-rated film The Wicker Man, (I never read any other reviews until I have finished writing my own). I am glad that Endeavour never ended up inside a giant wicker man at the end of the episode.

This is a rather disappointing episode after last week’s excellent episode, Lazaretto. It is certainly not as bad as the second episode Canticle but unfortunately this episode has too many faults. As I have mentioned in other reviews there are times when the writing is more akin to an episode of Murder She Wrote or an Agatha Christie series.

The use of the old chestnut of a unfriendly village where strangers aren’t welcome wore out as a motif back in the seventies. I was waiting for Morse to enter the pub and the music to stop and all the customers and staff to stare at him. A villager then says, ‘There be a stranger among us’. It was all so twee and what was maybe worse the whole druid like antics of the villagers and their unwillingness to talk to Morse was all a red herring.

My biggest disappointment was under using Shelia Hancock. After all the build up over the last three episodes each ending with Sheila Hancock’s character laying down portentous tarot cards, NOTHING HAPPENS. Again the tarot cards where a red herring. The tarot card ‘death’ is shown at the end of the last episode, Lazaretto, and we all as fans assumed that there would be a dramatic death that would affect Morse. But there isn’t. I predicted Joan Thursday dying which I believe would have made for a better ending and allow Morse to move on from their doomed, unrequited love affair. A baby died but it wasn’t even Morse’s baby. It was either Ray Morton or Paul Marlock’s baby. Paul Marlock was the character from the last episode of the third series, Coda. he was a jack the lad who was only courting Joan to get information about the bank.


I do wish it had ended with Joan’s death and this would allow the series to move on. The whole affair between Morse and Joan is becoming like a soap opera and using it as a story arc just didn’t work. Russell Lewis has to start the next series with an end to the ‘will they won’t they‘ element to the Endeavour series and have Morse concentrate on his career and meet and fail with other women.

On the subject of Russell Lewis, I believe it is time to bring in other writers, some new blood. Thank you Russell for devising this series and getting it to the screen but I can’t think of another series where one writer has writen 17 two hour episodes by himself. The original Morse series worked partly due to the many great writers they used. The producers of the Morse series looked for the best screenwriters around at that time and it worked brilliantly. Mr Lewis, let go and allow your baby to be feed and looked after by other people. The other people won’t break or abuse or drop your baby if they are chosen wisely.

Another complaint is the ‘will he or won’t he‘ go to London scenario. OF COURSE NOT! We all as Morse fans know that Morse never leaves the Oxford police department. It is yet another red herring that has no drama or suspense. Unless of course you are completely unaware of anything that happened in the original series.

I believe it is time for the character of Fred Thursday to be written out of the series. I love the character and Roger Allam but a new DI for Morse would be breath of fresh air. It would allow the the character of Morse to have to adapt to a new boss and a new set of rules in that new boss’s methodology. That new DI should of course be McNutt. (N.B. the producers of Endeavour, make sure it is Scottish actor who plays the part of McNutt).

Don’t get me started on why the Americans were included in the plot. Why did they have to be Americans? Is it a sop to an American audience? Another red herring.

So, let us get to the good points about the episode and there were quite a few. As always and it is becoming something of a cliche but the acting by all was very good. My only complaint was the character of Seth Maddox played by Chris Coghill who mumbled his way through his lines.

The storyline was a prescient one regarding the dangers of nuclear power. It is only a few years ago that the Fukishima power plant went into meltdown. The preacher, Nigel Warren was wearing a CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) badge and the 1960s was a time when CND were coming to the fore having been formed in 1957. Actually the 1960s was a time when CND came closest to having people elected to Parliament. Nuclear power is as much of a contentious issue today as it was in the ’60s.

I enjoy that Thursday is not always shown as being perfect. Like other episodes he is shown to beat up someone and looks to being a policeman to never allow him to be brought to task for his actions. Violence is wrong especially when the attacker is a policeman but the 1960s and 1970s were infamous for the police using heavy handed violent tactics. The police force still has its bad apples today but I don’t believe that it can be compared to the 1960s and ’70s.  Fred Thursday was of a generation of police officers where violence was something of a norm.


The storyline was a good one and would have worked just as well without the whole Wicker Man subplot. Let’s not start pulling at the thread of how the preacher and the Professor became allies or it will all fall apart. The plot could have focused more on the cold case involving Matthew Laxman and his investigation into the nuclear plant and been all the better for it. The episode could have included the County police, those who couldn’t find their arse with a map, getting involved and show the rivalry between the two forces.

There were many lovely and funny lines in the episode. Apart from the one mentioned above about the county police there was Dorothea Frazil’s calling of Morse, ‘Snappy Jenkins‘. “Snappy?” says Morse. “Well you can be” replies Dorothea. That line and Fred’s about county were worth the price of admission.


This episode is my third favourite of the series behind Game and my favourite of the series, Lazaretto. I’m a little worried for the series especially in light of the news that the next series is going to have six episodes. I am a great believer in quality not quantity.

I’m still looking forward to the next series even though it is with a bit of trepidation. My main concern is the standard of writing that can be maintained by one man. After the six episodes of the next series that will bring the total for the whole series to 23. One man writing almost 40 hours of television. Twenty three episodes is only ten episodes away from the number of episodes in the Morse and Lewis series. Will Russell end the Endeavour series on the 33rd episode? Time will tell.

My Jag rating out of ten is: six-jags


It took two viewings to find Mr Dexter and it is a rather cunning way to have him in the show if not physically.



A friend of Colin’s has told me that they believe the bust is one that was created by portrait sculpture. Ruth Bader Gilbert.


The first piece of music is heard around the three minute mark. It is Mozart’s Requiem Mass in D Minor, K. 626: III. Sequentia: Dies irae. (The K represents the Köchel catalogue. … The Köchel-Verzeichnis or Köchelverzeichnis is an inclusive, chronological catalogue of compositions by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, which was originally created by Ludwig von Köchel. It is abbreviated K. or KV).

More about  Mozart’s Requiem in the section, ‘Connections to Morse and Lewis’ below.

Around eight and a half minutes we hear Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland, BWV 659 by Johann Sebastian Bach.

At 27 minutes we get a classic from the 1960s. Paint it Black by The Rolling Stones.

Literary References

About two minutes into the episode we hear the preacher, Nigel Warren, quoting from the bible. Revelation 8:1.

When the Lamb opened the seventh seal,there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and they were given seven trumpets.…

At about 10 minutes Morse and Thursday approach Nigel Warren as he stands preaching. This time he is again quoting from the bible; Revelation 8:7

The first angel blew his trumpet, and there followed hail and fire, mixed with blood, and these were thrown upon the earth. And a third of the earth was burned up …

At around 50 minutes Morse is talking to the American, Levin at the power station. He tells Morse that of course he knows Professor Donald Bagley as his book, Prometheus Unbound was necessary reading at university. Prometheus Unbound is a play by Percy Bysshe Shelley. It is concerned with the torments of the Greek mythological figure Prometheus, who defies the gods and gives fire to humanity, for which he is subjected to eternal punishment and suffering at the hands of Zeus. Of course Shelley’s wife Mary wrote Frankenstein. That book’s subtitle is The Modern Prometheus.

At around one hour and 24 minutes the Preacher quotes again from the bible while in the power station. Revelation 8:8.

Then the second angel blew his trumpet, and a great mountain of fire was thrown … And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning…


The first and second time we find the preacher preaching he is standing opposite New College Lane.







Next up we have Morse and Strange walking out of the fish and chip shop into Ship Street.





When they reach Turl Street, Strange walks off leaving Morse to go in the other direction.



The village of Hambleden near Henley stands in for Brampton.


A very pretty village and it is easy to see why it makes a great location.




Next we have the village post office where Morse meets the village Post Mistress.



Now we have the place where Morse and Thursday talk to Dr. Tristan Berger.


And the Sexton of the church. The church is called St Mary the Virgin.



When Morse first visits the village he is dropped off beside the pub, The Hanged Man.



Of course the pub that is in the village of Hambleden is actually called The Stag & Huntsman. 

On the way out of the village we find the house that doubled for the American couple’s house.





Hambleden has been used for many feature films such as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, 101 Dalmatians, Sleepy Hollow, Into the Woods and the New Avengers, for major TV productions such as Band of Brothers, A Village Affair, Poirot, Rosemary & Thyme, New Tricks and Down to Earth as well as a variety of advertisements and promotions.

Up next we have the exterior of the botanic gardens where Morse and Thursday interview Alison Laxman. The interiors may have been filmed there but it could also have been shot in a studio.



After talking to Alison, Morse and Thursday go looking for Professor Donald Bagley. They find him in Magdalen College Chapel.



The painting that can be seen at the back of the chapel is Christ Carrying the Cross on His Way to Calvary by Juan de Valdés Leal (1622–1690)


Endeavour and Thursday talk to Professor Donald Bagley in Magdalen College Cloisters.


The location that stood in for the local nuclear power plant, Bramford B, was Fawley Power Station. It’s located on the western side of Southampton Water, between the villages of Fawley and Calshot in Hampshire. The power station was shut on 31 March 2013.

Image result for Fawley Power Station

Image result for Fawley Power Station


Connections to the original Morse or Lewis series.

Well we have to start with the obvious first, Sheila Hancock.


Sheila Hancock was, as if you all didn’t know, married to John Thaw the original Morse.

Michael Pennington who played Professor Donald Bagley,


appeared in the Lewis episode Life Born of Fire, Series 2, episode 3 as Dr. Melville.


Adam Levy who played Elliott Blake,


also appeared in the Lewis episode, Falling Darkness (Series 4, episode 4) as Dr. Nicolae Belisarius.



Thank you to Rúnar Lund who noticed that Joanna Horton who played Selina Berger also appeared in the Endeavour episode Fugue as Linda Snow.


Interesting Facts and Trivia

At around 52 minutes when Morse is sitting in the car with Ms Frazil he says, “Go west, young man‘. Now stick with me because this connection is rather tenuous and may fall apart at any time. The phrase that Morse used is usually attributed to American author and newspaper editor Horace Greeley. Okay so far. Mr Greeley was the name of the man who died during the night in the opening of the last episode, Lazaretto. With me so far because here is another tenuous connection. There was a character named (Dean) Greely in the Lewis episode Whom the Gods Would Destroy, (series 1, episode 1). Oh chills down the spine  eh 😉


The scene in the nuclear plant was to me reminiscent of the excellent 1970s film The China Syndrome. It starred Jack Lemmon, Michael Douglas and Jane Fonda. It is about a reporter who finds what appears to be a cover-up of safety hazards at a nuclear power plant. If you haven’t seen the film watch out for it. The China Syndrome refers to a scenario in which a molten nuclear reactor core could could fission its way through its containment vessel, melt through the basement of the power plant and down into the earth. While a molten reactor core wouldn’t burn “all the way through to China” it could enter the soil and water table and cause huge contamination in the crops and drinking water around the power plant. Fukashima is believed to have been a China Syndrome according to some scientists.


We now know DI Thursday full name, Frederick Albert Thursday.


The episode opens with a mention of the an escalation of problems between Russia and American which resulted in what became known as the Cuban missile crisis in October 1962.


When Fred Thursday is talking to Chief Supt Reginald Bright about the disappearance of Matthew Laxman five years before he mentions that his old bagman liaised with County police. The bagman he mentioned was DS Lott.  The character of DS Arthur Lott appeared in the pilot episode of Endeavour.


DS Lott was played by Danny Webb. Of course Danny Webb appeared in the pilot of the Lewis series as Tom Pollock. Danny Webb must like flying with all the pilots he appears in. 🙂 (A Dad joke). I was never happy that DS Lott was never mentioned again when Endeavour started it’s first series.


Around 35 minutes Selina Berger mentions to Morse that she was at the cinema in 1962 on the afternoon of Mathhew Laxman’s disappearance, “The borstal boy who became a runner.” This is is of course referring to the excellent 1960s classic film, The Loneliness of a Long Distance Runner. It starred Tom Courtenay who was a close friend of John Thaw. John Thaw had a bit part in the film.

Image result for loneliness of a long distance runner inspector morse

The Mozart Requiem used in this episode was also used in the Endeavour episode, Ride but a different section was used. The Mozart Requiem is also mentioned in Colin Dexter’s Inspector Morse novel, The Way Through the Woods. In the novel Morse is asked what versions of the Requiem he has. Morse has five versions of the Mozart Requiem. He later buys another version but on CD this time. The Requiem also has a connection to an episode of Lewis. One of my blog readers, Jean, pointed out that the Mozart Requiem is being listened to by Hathaway via his headphones.


The scene is at around 34 minutes in the episode, Old, Unhappy, Far off Things (Series 5, episode 1). Hathaway has stayed up all night to collate and organize photographs taken at a fancy dress party. It’s actually a lovely scene due to Lewis realising how fond of Hathaway he is and how much Hathaway has a fondness for him. Lewis asks Hathaway why he has done all this through the night. Hathaway answers, “Well, you thought something wasn’t right.”


Endeavour mentions that he would be based at Tintagel house when he moved to London. Tintagel is renowned for its association with the legend of King Arthur. The Tintagel Castle is seen by many as King Arthurs. One of the knights of the round table was Tristan and that is the name of one of the characters in the Harvest episode. WOW how is that for tenuous. 😉


When Morse visits Joan in the hospital we see a sign for Fleming Ward and Hardy Ward.


A reference to two of Russell Lewis’s favourite authors, Ian Fleming and Thomas Hardy? I have no proof of that. There is a Fleming Ward at Papworth Hospital in Cambridge. There is a Hardy Ward in the Northwick Park and St Mark’s Hospital in London. If you really want to grasp at the proverbial straws for connections, Robert Hardy starred in the Morse episode, Twilight of the Gods.


Thans to John Crawford who noticed the following reference. “In “Harvest”, when Strange tells Morse about the job opportunity with Scotland Yard in London, the man in charge there is “DI Craddock”. Inspector Craddock is a Scotland Yard inspector in the Miss Marple universe, https://agathachristie.fandom.com/wiki/Dermot_Craddock.”


Sheila Hancock’s character name of Dowsable Chattox may be a reference to the Pendle Witches. Pendle Hill is in Lancashire. Anne Whittle alias Chattox was one of many who were charged with witchcraft in the 17th century, found guilty of murder and hanged.

In the episode at the nuclear plant they talk of the Goldenrod. Control rods are used in nuclear reactors to control the fission rate of uranium and plutonium. Interestingly, In Fukushima Japan, Canada Goldenrod has taken over the rice fields that have been temporarily abandoned because of the nuclear power plant disaster. Also, Matthew Laxman, was an Oxford……… botanist.


John Crawford sent me the following note, “In “Harvest”, when Strange tells Morse about the job opportunity with Scotland Yard in London, the man in charge there is “DI Craddock”. Inspector Craddock is a Scotland Yard inspector in the Miss Marple universe.”


John Molloy has came up with some interesting references. “Andy Kirkham draws a link between Sgt Troy Martin and Troy Kennedy Martin who wrote Edge of Darkness. I suggest more links exist in Endeavour to Troy Kennedy Martin. TKM’s brother, Ian, created The Sweeney which starred the late John Thaw. TKM wrote some scripts for The Sweeney TV series and scripted the feature film Sweeney 2. TKM created the TV series Z Cars which was set in the fictional town of Newtown. At the start of Endeavour we learn he is brought into Oxford from Carshall Newtown Police Station. In series 5 of Endeavour we are introduced to a new detective, George Fancy. His name is an amalgamation of Sergeant George Carter ( played by Dennis Waterman ) in The Sweeney and PC William ” Fancy ” Smith ( played by Brian Blessed ) in Z Cars.
Alternatively, and taking on board your own suggestion that Hardy Ward in Harvest implies that Hardy is one of Russell Lewis’ favourite authors is Sgt Troy Martin a nod in the direction of Sgt Troy who is one of the 3 suitors of Bathsheba Everdene in Thomas Hardy’s Far From The Madding Crowd. Another of Bathsheba’s suitors was Gabriel Oak who, like Seth Chattox, was a shepherd.”


John also noticed a continuity error. When Endeavour visits the nuclear station with Dorothea he is wearing a jumper.

Later after the visit, Dorothea drops him off in the country and Endeavour goes for a walk. The jmper disappears.

He meets Fred (the jumper is still not there).

and then goes to meet a woman in the village after which he talks to Seth. The jumper is back.

Well spotted John.



Natalie Burt as Alison Laxman


Michael Pennington as Professor Donald Bagley


Joanna Horton as Selina Berger


Adam Levy as Elliott Blake


Alex Wyndham as Dr. Jon Levin


Emily Forbes as Ros Levin


Simon Meacock as Nigel Warren


Matthew Walker as Ray Morton


Grahame Fox as Zebulon Sadler


Chris Coghill as Seth Chattox


Sam Hoare as Dr. Tristan Berger


Shaun Evans as DC Endeavour Morse


Roger Allam as DI Fred Thursday


Anton Lesser as Chief Supt Reginald Bright


Dakota Blue Richards as WPC Shirley Trewlove


Jane Whittenshaw as Morag Morrison


Sheila Hancock as Dowsable Chattox


Caroline O’Neill as Win Thursday


Sam Redford as Sgt. Troy Martin


Abigail Thaw as Dorothea Frazil


Sara Vickers as Joan Thursday


James Bradshaw as Dr. Max DeBryn


Sean Rigby as DS Jim Strange


Raj Paul as a Doctor

To read another perspective on this episode read Hannah Long’s review of the episode at http://longish95.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/endeavour-series-4-harvest-episode.html

This is the final overview of series four. I hope you have enjoyed this post. I will be looking to return to my posts on the music, art and literary references in the Morse series. Take care.



Author: Chris Sullivan

Up until a few years ago I was my mum's full time carer. She died in, 2020, of Covid. At the moment I am attempting to write a novel.

102 thoughts

  1. Great review Chris. I share your disappointment over the tarot cards. It seems it was a pointless so-called plot device, and seems to have no relevance at all to the glimpses at the end of the previous episodes. It is a shocking mis-use of Sheila Hancock.

    Following the third episode, that was going to be tough act to follow, but this episode was a good one, but not strong and I have on the Facebook group mentioned that Endeavour would benefit from other writers. When you look at the writers who took part in Morse, then there were some very strong episodes written by a variety of people. I would hope that over the next few series then the story arcs or timelines that Russell has put together can be referenced, but it is not just for him to write the episodes.

    Also, thank you Chris for all your posts and the time taken. Not only the encyclopedic references both inside and outside the Morse universe, but also the photos and location maps.

      1. One question: Who broke into Morse’s apartment? And did someone steal his sgt’s exam?

      2. The break in was caused byt the kids Thursday mentioned near the beginning of the episode who had already broke into other properties in the area where Morse lives. Regarding Morse’s exam paper going missing, that looks like it is down to the long arm of the Masons who dislike Morse.

      3. Can I ask the question? You have stated Hambleden as the village used. The scene outside the church looks very much like the (also named) St Mary the Virgin church at the village ( approx 5 miles north) in Turvey. Used in the program Goodnight Mr Tom . John Thaw . Am I correct?

  2. Yes I agree that it would have been better to have had Joan die – I hated the way the character was written this season from ‘girl next door’ flirting with Morse to….but I think that was to clear the decks for romance between Trewlove/ Morse in series 5 – which will get more n the way of good solid mysteries. Hope not.

    1. The only thing with killing off Joan is that she’s mentioned a few times in “Inspector Morse” as Joan Strange or Mrs. Strange. It wouldn’t have made sense to kill her with that knowledge. I do realize that it’s 5 years since you wrote your comment so if you’ve already figured this out then I apologize.

      1. Hi Jody. Joan Strange is never mentioned in the Morse series. In the Morse series we know Strange is married but she is never mentioned by name.

  3. Thank you Chris for such a thorough analysis as always. Sadly I can relate to having an ill mother, and I hope that yours recovers quickly.

    I seem to have liked the episode more than you did, but I have it ranked the same way. Lazaretto was the gem of season 4. I hope, as you do, that other writers are brought in to do justice to next season’s 6 episodes and to enable these fine characters to flourish beyond trite plot devices.

    Have you watched Shetland at all? It’s my favorite drama to come out of the UK in the last several years. Five different writers have created 3 seasons, and each episode has been of such high quality.

    Thank you again for your fine work.

      1. I watched Shetland on repeat – originally because of Sara Vickers being in the cast and because I love Doug Henshall. Then I started reading some not good reviews so was surprised how good it was – just goes to show that you should judge these things yourself – btw – I love ur site. Discovered it by accident a month or so ago and spent hours going through it – have watched all Morse, Lewis and Endeavour and was delighted with your meticulous linking of the shows. I am quite apprehensive about the next series – hope I am proved wrong ( I often am)

  4. Absolutely enjoyed reading your review. I’ve been truly impressed with your knowledge of all three drama serieses in MORSE franchise, their cross-cultural references and the locations. The time and love you’ve put into these researches, I can only imagine… I also value your honesty very much! Thank you, and look forward to reading S5 ones!

    p.s. FYI, Mozart’s ‘Dies irae’ movement was heard through Hathaway’s headphones too when he pulled an all-nighter in “Old, Unhappy, Far Off Things,” seen in this clip: https://youtu.be/7lOxRsfeRyo

    1. Hi Jean. I’m glad you are enjoying my blog and thank you for your kind comment. As for the Lewis Mozart Requiem connection, thank you. I have added the information into the blog post.

  5. Hi Chris, as always I’m impressed by how many details you recognise and the connections you make, and the effort you take to share all that with us. As to what you say about the stories, and Fred Thursday, yes, yes and yes. And about the acting, yes, superb as always. I also agree the thing with Joan has been streched to or over the limit, but this story has given Sara Vickers another opportunity to show more of her great talent, which was a good thing. Bravissima. Morse could have gone to the Met and come back to Oxford, why not? Now that he has become a Sergeant he won’t though, of course.

    Whatever you think of the stories, Endeavour is a top class show. the cinematography, the acting, the locations, the costumes and the attention to detail, it’s all top class. The characters are all real and 3-dimensional, however small their part, which is what most shows miss badly.
    Another great thing is the sense of humour: Fred Thursday walking into the wrong office, Snappy Jenkins, Ms. Frazil saying “that was even before MY time”, etc. The whole show is a feast for the senses. I am actually at a point where I regard the stories as a mere vehicle to bring me all this beauty. Maybe that’s not what it should be about, but I’m happy!

    Talking of senses though: I miss the classical music. There is some, sure, but not enough. Especially in Lazaretto, Endeavour on his way to Joan in the Jag, playing “I get along without you very well”. NO! That was so wrong! So not Endeavour Morse! Surely there are plenty of classical titles to chose from for this scene.

    One more thing: now that we have seen the 4th series of Endeavour, 17 episodes, and have the 30th Morse anniversary behind us, perhaps it’s time that we should move on and let go a bit of the old Inspector Morse series. Endeavour is a great series in its own right, and has reached new generations of viewers who have no knowledge of or interest in Inspector Morse, which is only natural. Not saying that it should be ignored, but there could be a bit less of the eternal references and comparisons, both by writer(s) and by audience and critics. It’s about time. Shaun Evans is Endeavour. They both stole my heart. Not all episodes deserve 10 Jags, no. But to me, even the least loved episode is better than anything else on TV. It’s simply the greatest show on earth.

    1. I completely agree with you Joephine, Endeavour is he best tthing on TV! I have a question for Chris, or anyone – about the break in, to Morse’s apartment. If he’s a detective why wasn’t there more investigation into his apartment being broken into? Thursday’s answer seemed too simple.

    2. This was a good posting, Josephine and I agree with you. It wasn´t until the very last minute in this episode we knew that Morse was promoted from Detective Constable to Detective Sergeant. I don´t think it was meant as a red herring and I also think Morse would have packed his bags and moved to London if he hadn´t got the promotion. Not only for the job itself, but also as a way to get away from Joan and to have a fresh start.
      I read here and there in different reviews of the episodes about Russell Lewis and the criticism he get. We´re now in January 2020 and up to 27 episodes and for me it is just amazing how one person (with some help I´m sure) can think of new plots to keep Endeavour going. I have problem just to think of one plot for one episode… Is Endeavour really so bad that we need a new writer, is Russell Lewis that bad? No, I don´t think so.
      Some person will rank one episode as the very best of the season, for another person another episode will get the highest rank. Every episode speaks to us in different ways. What I might appreciate in one episode maybe another person don´t even think of.
      Endeavour is so much more than just the plot. As you say Josephine, the genuine atmosphere in all episodes, the interaction between the characters, how Jim Strange develops and climb in ranks, the fate of poor Fancy and the history behind Peter Jakes. Could anyone else have written all this? Yes, of course, but now it is Russell Lewis who writes. Inspector Morse was written by a number of writers and is a good example that many writers doesn´t necessarily mean better stories. To be honest, some episodes in Inspector Morse have no credibility what so ever and the quality of the episodes varies.
      A small wish though is to see the intelligent and former WPS Trewlove coming back into the story from her new position at the Yard. I guess that will never happen, but every man is allowed to have a secret wish. Thank you.

  6. Thank you for the review Chris! I agree with you on the plot, it is less well developed than in lazaretto, where I also preferred the direction. I have to say I like the almost romance with Joan, and would still like to see them together, even if only briefly. I think Shaun Evans said in an interview that he would like to see Morse very happy for a short amount of time and then sort of transitioning into inspector Morse. I never watched inspector Morse but my mom has, and told me he never marries and is lonely. It is in a way a bit sad to watch young Morse and on one hand hoping for good things to come down his path, but on the other hand knowing that there are no reasons for that hope. I really enjoy the show though, great characters and acting.. on this episode I just didn’t like how Morse didn’t take more care of Joan when he saw she had been beaten. I would expect him to be more protective, make her stay the night and maybe go with her to pick up her stuff. I have a feeling this storyline will continue next season. But it would be nice a bit less drama between them. Just let them be happy for a few episodes and focus more on top notch crime plots. Well, we’ll have to wait!

  7. Hello, i found your blog recently and I am really impressed with your knowledge of Morse.
    I think that I must point out to the small misunderstanding regarding the tarot cards. At the end of the last episode was not shown only one card, but two – Tower and Death. Combination of tarot cards has its own significance. In this case, it’s something like “extreme changes, old ways die, new ways to build in your life”.
    And second little note is referring to Tintagel Castle: DI Craddock, which is mentioned, was a role in movie “Miss Marple: The Mirror Crack’d from Side to Side” and he was played by John Castle.

    1. Re Tintagel House. In the 1960s, Tintagel House was the base for the Metropolitan police Flying Squad, also known as The Sweeney (Sweeney Todd = Flying Squad) One of John Thaw’s most notable characters was of course Sgt Regan in The Sweeney….

      1. How do you know that, Andy? I asked the MPS and received this reply: Our records do not show a complete list of who was based as Tintagel House so I can’t confirm if Flying Squad officers were based there.
        The MPS were based at Tintagel house from 1960-2012.
        Dr Clare Smith, Historic Collection Curator.

  8. Another masterful review. I’ve loved reading them as a guide to each episode this season. Thank you for compiling them.

    Perhaps it was a bit disappointing that more wasn’t made of the tarot lead-up, but I like to think Russell was highlighting rationality by saying “You shouldn’t believe in such mumbo-jumbo.” Why should we expect a significant death just because of a card being turned over? Just out of interest, a “true” reading of the three cards turned over as probably would not lead to a prediction of death anyway. More likely it foreshadows the option of moving to London. Using some definitions from https://meaningofeachtarotcard.wordpress.com/ :
    “The Hanged Man: Personal loss for a greater good. But also getting a new point of view.” [Failed Sergeant’s exam, and generally being unloved in Oxford, but generates option of move to London]
    “The Lovers: the impulse, that sends one ‘out of the garden’. Can be sexual desire as well as a duty or the wish to go on an adventure. Once one leaves the garden, there is no turning back.” [London would be leaving the garden, an adventure]
    “Death: Among the cards, Death is one of the most difficult to interpret. Some possibilities are: the ending of a cycle and the beginning of a new one, transformation and sometimes the price one has to pay for something. (Note: The Death does not represent the physical process of dying!)” [Moving to London would certainly be a cycle change, a transformation.]
    I’m probably over-analysing, but well, why not?

    By the way, the reason “Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner” was mentioned was that it was John Thaw’s movie debut; more significant than just a bit part.

    And finally, I can’t agree with you about “The Wicker Man”, unless you’re referring to the egregious Nicholas Cage remake. The original 1970s movie with Edward Woodward is a masterpiece!

    Once again, many thanks for your work.


    1. Thanks Ben for your kind comment. Very good point regarding Russell Lewis’s possible reason for including the tarot cards.I should have mentioned it was John’s first film role. I included his bit part in my video on the life of John on film.

  9. Another skilful and painstaking reveiw…odd sort of story…reminded me of Dr Who” The Daemons”, and ep of the newer Randalll & Hopkirk ( deceased)….set in the village of Hadell Wroxted…( a favourite of mine) I was a bit shocked though that you want to move on from Fred Thursday…no…..a thousand times NO.!! Now, someone has always been in the back of my mind to play McKnutt…he may be wrong age, or whatever….but wouldnt Douglas Henshall be purfect in the role.??!!

  10. Thanks for your sterling work Christopher & I hope Mum is soon on the mend.
    Firstly, I disagree with your thoughts on The Wicker Man, Edward Woodward (The ‘Great’ Edward Woodward) was brilliant in it & a stonking screenplay by Anthony Shaffer which created a thoroughly convincing alternative society, building tension through a paced development and indirect suggestion and making the terrifying climax all the more effective. Performances are also ‘tight’, with Woodward,self righteous as the investigator and Christopher Lee delivering one of his most accomplished performances as Lord Summerisle.
    Your point about ‘a stranger in the village’ is well made & puts me in mind of a hilarious epIsode of The Green Green Grass, Spin off from Only Fools & Horses, where Boycie & Marlene visit a local pub & when they walk through the door, a whole room of border collies raise their heads….
    I actually thought Sheila Hancock gave a beautiful character performance there, very nuanced & inhabited the character well. I suspect time is at a premium for Endeavour, as there are so many strands converging & I have felt several of Series 4 episodes have felt ‘rushed’ to me, cramming in every last strand of the plot development far too quickly. At the end of Harvest, we’re rushed through Fred’s Palace Visit through a series of ‘Snaps’ & Endeavour forlornly looking at his George Medal & promotion papers. I also felt Bright underused in this episode . I have to take umbrage at the idea of moving Thursday on. I think the partnership of Thursday/Endeavour is pure gold . We know there has to be plot development for Endeavour, sometime, but not just now~ Thanks, as I am loving Roger Allam’s stunning performances.
    Also, I think it would have been a mistake to kill off Joan~ I believe there may yet be mileage there. Have to say, I’ve admired much of Russ Lewis’s work & I’ve loved the inclusion of all the 60’s music in Endeavour. Perhaps have some guest writers in, but I would n’t wish to lose Russ’s input
    Dougie Henshall for McNutt might be a good shout~ I’ve watched the whole Shetland series & he’s a solid actor
    The episodes Sara Vickers played in,also had the inimitable Ciaran Hinds, As most people who know me, know, he is my main man….Oh, & Roger Allam….

    1. “where Boycie & Marlene visit a local pub & when they walk through the door, a whole room of border collies raise their heads….”
      Oh I want to see this!

  11. Ciaran Hinds wonderfiul in Jane Eyre, and I thought no-one could beat Toby Stephens….but Ciaran ran a close second. Yes, Mr Bright was underused, especially now he is back on duty….I was so afraid he was being written out. after Lazaretto…… Got to start watching Shetland now……

  12. Good review again. Yes, the “unfriendly village” stereotype was disappointing, maybe a nuclear power plant being built on the land would explain some of their attitude but not as much as that.
    I thought that Morse would actually go to London, but come back to Oxford later on.
    The relationship between Joan and Endeavour showed us that people can be imperfect with emotions and actions. He should have said “I love you” instead of “Marry me” which Joan took as a sign of pity. He puts the ‘Morse’ into ‘Remorse’ haha.
    At the end of this episode, he received a medal and his delayed promotion. Looking forward to the six episodes of the series 5 in 2018 and your reviews of course.
    Hope your mum’s OK.

    1. I thought “Marry me” was pretty powerful. But it wouldn’t have mattered what he said. She wouldn’t agree to be with him because she was pregnant and wouldn’t saddle him with that.

      1. Can we be certain that Joan knew she was pregnant? That wasn’t made clear to me. Was it a bad fall? More likely she suffered a beating from her boyfriend, payback for the beating Fred gave him. Either way, poignant to the point of painful. Why can’t these two characters stop circling one another and take a different direction: get together or forget about it?

  13. The rural absurdity of Brampton reminded me of Howling, in Cold Comfort Farm. The unusual Christian names were similar, particularly Seth. Zebulon and Seth had a most curious dialect, best appreciated with subtitles, which you dismiss as mumbling. You should read Cold Comfort Farm if you haven’t already.

    You don’t mention where the power station scenes were filmed. Actually, it didn’t look to me either like a power station (which would have turbines, even if it was a nuclear power station) or any kind of nuclear plant. It’s not at all clear what all those pipes were doing where the characters were wandering without protective clothing. It might even have been a brewery.

    You mention Fukishima, but in 1962 everybody who lived near a power station would have been thinking of the minor (?) disaster at Windscale (now called Sellafield) in 1957. What made a great impression on me at the time was the television news showing gallons of milk going down the drain “as a precaution” (and I do wonder now where the drain went !).

    Hambleden is actually in Buckinghamshire, not Oxfordshire, but its architecture was not inappropriate if we assume that Brampton power station was an amalgam of Didcot Power Station (coal-fired) and Harwell Atomic Energy Research Establishment, both now in Oxfordshire but still in historic Berkshire in 1962 — so I’m afraid the County police force involved would have been a different one .

    Personally, I don’t think this episode was out of line with what you call the “Agatha Christie” style plots of many episodes in all the series. You may prefer the more realistic ones, and perhaps the university-based ones, but Harvest was not exceptional in its content. There have been a large number of religious cults and secret societies too. You could probably tell us how many !

    Now here is your blockbuster ! Seth is a relatively familiar Biblical name, even if seldom now used (he was the only brother of Cain and Abel). But Zebelon ? He was the sixth son of Jacob and Leah. The name has sometimes been used in America, including (remember that fear of being shut up inside a prison, like St Joan ?) Zebelon Brockway, the American “Father of Prison Reform”.

  14. “My only complaint was the character of Seth Maddox played by Chris Coghill who mumbled his way through his lines.”
    You mean Chattox, right? Maddox could have led to an interesting Lewis connection, of course…

  15. I’ve tried to find the Facebook group mentioned in some of the comments. Could you please give me the name of the group? Thanks!

      1. Any idea where Brampton power station was filmed ? It would be very interesting to know. Or equally interesting to know that they won’t tell you !

  16. I am very sorry ! I certainly saw Christ and Sheila Hancock, but I must have missed that (unless you added it after I looked).

    Fawley was oil-fired, which might explain what seemed to me an excessive number of pipes, and no nuclear plant. They obviously just didn’t go near the turbines (or they might have been removed).

    Some of your readers may not realise that Oxford is very close to Didcot Power Station and Harwell, and if you aren’t fully in the know, it’s easy to confuse the two, as I assume the author has done deliberately. From some parts of the City of Oxford, particularly Shotover Hill, Didcot Power Station was very much visible, at least until part of it was demolished. Even now, the chimney is the 16th tallest structure in Britain (excluding TV masts etc).

    Presumably Brampton is supposed to be Sutton Courtenay .

  17. Thanks for the FB links. I read your mother hadn’t been doing well. How is she now? I hope she is feeling better.

  18. Thank you for your blog, I’ve been reading each of your reviews after seeing an episode and absolutely love the amount of detail and background information you add.

    Something I noticed, don’t know if you have; the same church was used in the endeavour S01E01: Girl, where the reverend was killed

    Hope your mother is doing all right.
    All the best!

  19. Thank you Chris for the wonderful reviews for season 4 of Endeavour.
    In the Harvest episode the “Unfriendly Village” also reminded me of Simon Pegg’s movie, Hot Fuzz. I kept expecting the villagers to turn around and chant: “The greater good!”
    Best wishes.

  20. Hi Christopher, series 4 of Endeavour hasn’t been broadcasted yet in my country so I bought the dvd’s. I watched each episode a couple of times, but this evening I watched “Harvest” with your review next to me. It’s brilliant as always! So detailed and interesting. Also felt a bit uncomfortable since I must be the only person on earth who didn’t know Sheila Hancock was married to John Thaw.;-) It’s great, when watching the episode, to know what music you hear, to know in what charming places it is all set! I agree with you the serie needs a new DI, though Roger Allam is a great actor. Can’t wait for the next serie! And your next review! Thanks for all the work you put into this! Regards, Silvana

  21. I thought it was going to go all Wicker Man, there, for a while with all that rustic stuff a-happening. Isn’t the veil thinnest in November? It were good for “color” anyways. God help me, that Miss Thursday.

  22. Wonderful blog Chris! My first visit to it! Love all the details. Can you elaborate some on Morse being made Sargent? Is he going to London to be upped in rank? Looking forward to reading more of your blog.

  23. So glad I found your site! Thanks for all you do—looking forward to digging more.

    I love Thursday, but moving on to a new DI wouldn’t hurt. Could be a good shakeup with Lewis writing so many hours of television. I kind of wonder if the doomed romance is going to set up for major conflict between Thursday and Endeavour. Not that I want them fighting—really want them to leave each other in a place of gratitude but it just seems so impossible for his show, right now—I was thinking of Thursday telling Endeavour “Be good to her,” when he mistakenly thought they were an item back in S1E4’s “Home,” preparing for the possibility of not making it out of the Moonlight Louge. Not sharing Joan’s new address is one thing, but I don’t know if Fred will be as forgiving about letting Joan slip away into the night with that black eye and only a wad of cash. I read somewhere that this season is going to be darker, poor guy.

  24. Bravo! I’m always impressed by your detailed explanations of everything Morse. In this case, I especially liked how you mentioned that the village of Hambleden was used in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. I’m American and when I was a child that was always on TV after dinner on Thanksgiving. Here’s something for you. I like looking people up on IMDb to see what else they might have been in. Well, when I looked up Joanna Horton I noticed that she has been in two Endeavour episodes. This one and Fugue. BTW – Like you I was thinking that it would be nice if they made 33 Endeavour episodes. I’ve got my fingers crossed.

  25. Hi Joanna Horton (Selina Berger) is the first actor so far to appear in two episodes of Endeavour. She was also in Fugue in the first season as the young mother in the Snowmaiden incident

    1. Well spotted. I never thought to check this type of situation as I didn’t imagine the casting team would use an actor they had cast in a previous episode. I will add that info to the post. Thanks.

  26. The character Troy Martin is surely an allusion to Troy Kennedy Martin, writer of the 1980s TV drama Edge of Darkness which was about skulduggery in the nuclear industry

  27. Thank you for such a helpful, informative and comprehensive blog. We are in Oxford at the moment and doing our best to visit as many colleges as possible. On this page you have a picture of Magdalen College Chapel and underneath it is picture of All Souls College Chapel. I’m not sure that there is a connection?

    1. They are both of Magdalen College chapel. All Souls College floor doesn’t have the black section in between the rows.

      1. Ops! So sorry. We haven’t visited that chapel and it looks so much like All Souls. Humble apologies.

  28. I was reminded of this episode while watching the BBC adaptation of Agatha Christie’s ‘The Pale Horse’ recently; all that pagan stuff happening in a 1960s village in rural England. Wondering if Russell Lewis had this in mind as much as ‘The Wicker Man’ (as a novel, ‘The Pale Horse’ was published in 1961), I looked it up on Wikipedia and found that the Beeb is not the first TV company to have a go with this lesser-known Christie. Back in 2010, it was adapted for ITV’s ‘Agatha Christie’s Marple’, and the screenwriter tasked with inserting Miss Marple into the plot was … Russell Lewis!

  29. Having recently bought the necessary speakers, I’ve really enjoyed Endeavour series 4 in 5.1 surround sound, but this seems to be the only series available in this format. Does anyone know why? Expense, perhaps?

    1. I can only assume it’s financial reasons. the same reasons ITV refuses to reissue the Morse series in Blu-Ray or at least a proper HD version. The box set they sent out a few years ago was supposed to be HD was far from it.

      1. Chris, so right about the Morse dvd. I bought them a couple years ago and now recently found Morse being shown on Amazon prime. What a difference in quality between the two, the latter being so much better as far as hi def. also, having just rewatched lazaretto and harvest, I’m wondering if Joan fell on purpose ( women did sometimes before legal abortion) or was she pushed by her lover? He did hit her before.

  30. Michael Pennington has also read audiobooks of the Morse novels.

    I had thought he also appeared in a Morse episode, but I was getting confused with that other Thaw vehicle, Kavanagh QC.

  31. I noticed on the news bulletin at the start of the episode that the newsreader mentioned “the Russian Foreign Minister Mr Gromko”. The Russian Foreign Minister was Mr Gromyko, and any BBC newsreader would have known how to pronounce his name.
    There are several references above, including one by Chris, to the village of “Brampton”. The village is, of course, the fictional “Bramford”.

  32. The map that Morse looks at, showing the location of the Bramford II Nuclear Power Station, has “Westington Hill” marked on it. The only trouble is that the words are not on a hill. They are on a slope, but the power station appears to be at the summit, where the name of the hill would be marked.

  33. I hate it when luck plays a large part in the solution of a crime. How fortunate that Morse lay down next to that scarecrow! I can’t imagine what he saw on the back of the jacket that made him get up and look more closely and find the dosimeter on the front of it. Everybody pronounced the word as ‘doss-i-meter’, when it should be pronounced ‘dose-i-meter’, as it measures the *dose* of radiation received. The first mention is by Elliott Blake, who, you would think, would know how the word is pronounced.
    While Fred is visiting Joan, her ‘boyfriend’ arrives. Fred announces that he is Joan’s father, but the boyfriend does not introduce himself. Fred leaves and waits in the underground carpark. How long would he expect to wait? I would presume that the boyfriend had arrived at the flat after work and could have spent the night with Joan, leaving the next morning. Fortunately, the boyfriend arrives not too long after and is addressed as ‘Ray’ by Fred. How did Fred know his name? Fred assaults Ray and reads the numberplate of a nearby car, saying that he’ll know all about Ray within five minutes from that. But there was no sign that Ray was going to that car before Fred assaulted him.
    Near the end, Morse examines the end of Seth’s crook and shows it to Fred, who tells us that stick has been chewed in the same way as the spectacles recovered from Bramford Mere. As far as I know, the spectacles had not been shown to belong to Laxman, it was just an assumption. I can see that the spectacles and the stick both had marks, but it is quite a leap of faith to say that the marks were the same.
    Finally, Dowsable Chattox (where does Russell Lewis get these names from?) comes along and shoots Seth Chattox (her son, nephew or grandson?), saving the cost of a trial. But how come nobody noticed her approaching? She was within about 12 feet of Morse and Fred when she fired. Surely the dog, at least, would have reacted before the shotgun was fired.

    1. I couldn’t agree more with all your points. It feels like Russell Lewis sometimes gets lazy and hopes no one will notice.

      1. I think the dog certainly knew Dowsable Chattox was approaching, look at how he’s sitting with ears perked. As for Endeavour and Thursday not noticing her approach, they were engrossed in talking to Seth.

      1. Well, the dog was barking, so it did see Dowsable approaching, and perhaps the barking covered up any sounds she might be making. Also, Seth certainly would have seen her and would have known what she was about to do.

  34. Further to my previous comment, I just watched again the scenes where Morse interviews Dowsable. She tells him that Seth is her grandson.
    Laxman’s wife says, of the spectacles recovered from the mere, that “Matthew had a pair quite similar. It’s possible they’re his”. Hardly conclusive, imo.
    Morse read the case notes provided by ‘useless’ County. He read that Laxman’s jacket had only one leather elbow patch, on the left sleeve. This is on the screen for no more than five seconds. I missed its significance when Morse sees the leather patch on the jacket worn by the scarecrow over half an hour later in the episode. It was very efficient of County to get such a detailed description of what Laxman was wearing the day he disappeared, presumably from his wife.
    DeBryn identified the nibbles on Laxman’s spectacles as rodent teeth marks. I would have thought he would have been able to tell the difference between a rodent’s teeth marks and a dog’s, even if such things were not his field of expertise. DeBryn strikes me as not the sort of chap to make such an identification lightly. That Morse and Thursday could say that they were the same marks as those on Chattox’s crook, when they were not side by side, is the stuff of fairy tales.
    Lastly, where did Bagley get a gun from, and how did Warren obtain a hand grenade?

    1. Bert, thanks for pointing out about the elbow patch. I did not get that at all and I’ve seen this episode a few times. Now I understand how Morse realized it was the jacket. That should have been a made more clear.

    2. Just chiming in on your question: Where did Bagley get a gun and where did Warren get a grenade? As an American, I can only guess about 1960s gun laws in the UK, I can only guess here that there were a lot of guns that were off the books after WWII. I think Bagley’s gun was a Browning HiPower, which fits the WWII-60s era (other gun enthusiasts, please correct me or concur). As for a grenade, a lot of those went missing after WWII in USA. I suspect the same in the UK. Still, quite a stretch. Note that I had to explain to my wife my why pulling the pin is not enough to set off a WWII style grenade. It just arms it until one releases the lever. Nobody seems to question that here, which means you all know your grenades. 🙂

  35. Yes, Kathleen, I agree. I had to use the pause button to read what was written at the bottom of the page of County’s notes. When I first watched the episode, I didn’t notice the elbow patch at all when Morse rose to take a closer look at the scarecrow’s jacket’s left sleeve. When he then examined the right sleeve, I realised it was important, but I didn’t know why. But who on earth would put one elbow patch on a jacket? Even if the right sleeve didn’t need one, you buy them in pairs and you’d put them on in pairs, just for symmetry.

  36. There was a feature on BBC series Countryfile on Sunday last about the Hambleden Valley in Buckinghamshire where much of this episode was filmed. The presenter and his local guide mentioned how it’s a popular spot for filming, due to beautiful, well preserved villages and idyllic countryside. He refers to Hambleden as location of the Vicar of Dibley and the windmill featured in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. But no reference to the Endeavour episodes (Harvest and Zenena) and at least one episode of Poirot that were filmed there, presumably as they are produced by a rival TV station.

  37. I am so thrilled with all this you send me. (Although I do not like at all Endeavour, because it has nothing to do with Morse/Thaw. Not only him, everything!. But thanks all the same, I can see places and hear music, some of it Morse/Thaw could have choosen.) So, THANKS! But I have to protest emphatically because Agatha Christie has great stories and very ingenious, not all of course. But not all Dexter´s Morse is good and not all teve´s Morse is good. But of course Thaw made good anything! (I speak in Spanish…which is obvious). So thanks! But do not undervalue Agatha Christie. (I loved Poirot before Morse/Thaw.)

    1. Hello Amelia. I’m glad you are enjoying my website. Like so many things literature is a subjective subject. No insult intended regarding Christie but personally I don’t like her writing.

  38. My main gripe about the episode is that the actress who plays the American wife has the WORST American accent I have ever heard. I didn’t even realize she was supposed to be American until the dialogue said it.

    Also, Russell Davies can’t write women characters, which has bugged me since starting Endeavour. Joan started off as a headstrong independent young woman and then all of a sudden becomes stuck in an abusive relationship with a married man…really? It seems very unlikely given her parental models were her happily married mother and father. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen but it seems very out of character for her to go this way. The actress does what she can with skimpy material, and I know I’d have enjoyed her even more if the character had been written differently.

  39. I noticed a lot of King Arthur themes in Endeavor. Of course the ones mentioned, but also, there was a Sir Merlyn, reference to the Siege Perilous, and of course, the constant references to Wagner (who composed the Parsifal opera). This got me thinking; is Endeavor a Parisfal/Perceival character with Thursday as the Fisher King. Later, probably Endeavor taking the role as Fisher king- the Fisher King had a leg wound, which Endeavor picks up. One of the recurring themes in this show are things that go unsaid; which one of the themes of the Perceival story. Theres also themes of chivalry and Endeavor is often searching for things that elude (holy grails) – whether it be love or trying to figure out why nobody operates with full integrity. Any thoughts on that?

    1. “Endeavor is often searching for things that elude (holy grails) – whether it be love or trying to figure out why nobody operates with full integrity. Any thoughts on that?”

      Almost any hero on TV or elswehere is Parsifal, then. David Jason in almost any part.

      1. I think that was true up until S7 then they sadly upended his character, he certainly didn’t operate with any integrity by having an affair with a married woman behind a friends back – ignoring all the glaringly obvious signs that they were dodgy (certainly the viewer knew that with no evidence on screen) whilst treating his boss and long time supporter (Thursday) appallingly.

        Never understood why they did that – it didn’t fit with character or even character development for Inspector Morse – if so it would have at least made a little sense.

    1. Especially because in a previous episode Fred says “Don’t make me take my hat off!” . My dad was of the same WWII generation as Fred and also a soldier (Regular Army) and boxer. Never left the house without a smart hat on and could flatten most men without disturbing his hat. Fred reminds me a lot of my dad, but my dad would probably been one of Fred’s suspects.

  40. OK, last rant here, but how did Bagley and the preacher get into the power plant? Just because they were escorted by the American scientist? They won’t let police with ID in, but this motley crew waltzes into the control room of nuclear power plant? With a gun and a grenade? Every secure facility I have ever been in requires every visitor to already be in the log of expected visitors, even if escorted. And would certainly have to empty their pockets.

  41. Nothing on the episode itself to add from my comment i made a few years ago.

    One very tenuous connection is DI Craddock was a character from Miss Marple (as previously commented). His Detective Sergeant in A Murder Is Announced (1985) was played by Kevin Whately (this same episode also starring Samantha Bond who was in Dead on Time).

  42. It was nice to see Hambledon. I’ve been there once and it really is like going back it time; no surprise it’s such a popular filming location.

    I liked the reference to ‘Brief Encounter’ when Selina talked about returning her books to Boots and going to the cinema (I didn’t know that Boots lending library was still a thing in the 1960s).

    John Thaw and Tom Courtenay were at RADA together, as you probably know Chris, and in Tom Courtenay’s autobiography ‘Dear Tom’ there’s a photo of them in a play together there in 1960. If I remember correctly, John Thaw went to RADA very young, at sixteen.

    I agree with a lot of people that the Morse/Joan situation is tedious. But I think that after the bank raid Joan has PTSD, and it’s making her act out of character – she does seem to have had a bizarre change of personality. Like some others, I wondered if Ray (?) had pushed her downstairs or if she had engineered a fall to bring on a miscarriage. Presumably she knew she was pregnant (one doesn’t always know) and that’s why she was adamant that she couldn’t go back home. But yes, it’s going on a bit too long!

  43. The two police constables digging up the body of Laxman are wearing their helmets and full uniforms, including overcoats. If you were given a spade and told to dig, wouldn’t you at least take off your helmet and overcoat? Dr DeBryn identifies the body, dug out face down, as that of Laxman, “Most certainly.” He could recite Laxman’s dental records from memory. He hasn’t even looked in the mouth of the body yet! And why should he know Laxman’s dental records at all? They would only refer to Laxman’s dental records when they had a body to identify.

  44. “John also noticed a continuity error.” I have to disagree with John. As Morse walks through the field after leaving Ms Frazil, look carefully and you can see that he is holding his jumper and his jacket over his right shoulder with his right hand. When he lies down near the scarecrow, he lays his jacket down with the jumper on top of it. So it was a hot day and Morse took his jumper off. Btw, why would anybody have a scarecrow in a field of grass? OK it’s been there for five years at least (as it’s wearing Laxman’s jacket), so perhaps there was a crop there once. Later, Morse refers to the field as a maize field. The field had no maize in it that I could see. It was just wild, a grass meadow.

  45. Great Scotland Yard then New Scotland Yard has always been the headquarters of the MPS. Tintagel House became the offices for the MPS Receiver – the head of civil staff at the MPS, from the 1960s. The building was also used for operational police enquiries including the investigation into the Krays in the 1960s. [From Historic Collection Curator, Police Museum.]

  46. The first computer to be used by the Metropolitan Police (an ICT 1301) was set up in the Receiver’s Office (Tintagel House) for use on pay and crime statistics. It seems odd that Morse should have mentioned Tintagel House, as it was the HQ for civil staff.

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