CARTOUCHE: a carved tablet or drawing representing a scroll with rolled-up ends, used ornamentally or bearing an inscription.
Hello Morsonians and Endeavourists and welcome to my review of the second episode of the fifth series. Hope fully you have recovered from my rather unflattering review of the first episode. For those who haven’t read it and for those who have I have updated the post many times since I posted it with a lot of new information regarding locations etc. Click here to read that post. To paraphrase Endeavour, ‘I must warn you, it’s a post-mortem review’.
Endeavour Series five, Episode two; ‘Cartouche’.
Chronologically this is episode 19.
First broadcast 11th February 2018.
He was a bit harder to spot this episode. I never noticed the photo until the second viewing.
Directed by Andy Wilson. Andy also directed the Endeavour episode ‘Sway‘, Series 2 | Episode 3.
Written by Colin Dexter (characters), Russell Lewis (written and devised by). Russell has written all the Endeavour episodes. He also directed;
Lewis (TV Series) (screenplay – 4 episodes, 2010 – 2012) (story – 1 episode, 2006)
– Fearful Symmetry (2012) … (screenplay)
– Old, Unhappy, Far Off Things (2011) … (screenplay)
– Falling Darkness (2010) … (screenplay)
– The Dead of Winter (2010) … (screenplay)
– Reputation (2006) … (story)
He also wrote the Morse episode, ‘The Way Through the Woods’.
A former detective sergeant is found dead in his flat from what appears to be at first natural causes. However, Dr. DeBryn discovers that he was poisoned and another poisoning soon follows. Meanwhile the local cinema is preparing to welcome some famous Hollywood actors and directors to promote their latest film.
Endeavour is still finding it hard to warm to George Fancy but George finds a friendly ear in the form of Trewlove. At Fred Thursday’s house we discover he has guests, his brother and his wife and daughter.
In the background to the above racist attacks have been carried out at properties owned by the local gangster, Eddie Nero.
(warning, this review may contain some spoilers)
If you have read my review of the first episode of the fifth series you will know it was anything but flattering. So, I am sure you are wondering if this episode is going to fare much better. It won’t. Though the episode was slightly better it was still below the standard of previous episodes of early series.
It would seem that I am not alone in thinking this as the viewing figures for the episode dipped below five million as did the first episode. I believe this is the first series of Endeavour where the figures have been less than five million.
Of course they have not yet counted those who watch on catch up etc but it is worrying. We all know that shows are judged on their viewing figures. If the figures dipped to around the 4 million mark there will be the chance ITV will cancel the series.
So, my problems with this episode are numerous. The motive was the same as the first episode, Muse, revenge. Both episodes were based on a huge coincidence. In ‘Muse’ the coincidences were that the three men who raped Ruth Astor used the services of Eve Thorne via the telephone exchange where she worked. Also it was a huge coincidence that one of those men, Simon Lake, happened to visit Oxford to try and sell the Faberge Egg so having all three rapists in Oxford at the same time.
In ‘Cartouche’ the big coincidence was the actor and director Emil Valdemar visiting this little cinema in Oxford to promote his film.
Another problem is the writer Russell Lewis continuing to insult our intelligence by his over use of exposition and repeating information of events that had gone before. The meetings with Bright seem to be nothing more than exposition and over explanations of past events.
How many more times is Russell Lewis going to put Endeavour in a dangerous situation. The original series did not need to use such low level tactics of explosions, gunplay, multiple murders, etc etc. The original John Thaw was loved because of its intelligent story telling, slow pacing and plots and stroylines that grew organically. What the writers of the original series also never did was try to shoehorn in current world events in to the show to make political points. Russell Lewis continues to do this all to often.
Another big problem was Russell Lewis’s all to obvious references to what Endeavour will become in his later years. The prescient remarks were about as subtle as a brick to the head.
Endeavour: “How does someone start a policeman and end up a thief?”
Thursday: “Well, you know as well as I do, that given the right circumstances, anybody’s capable of anything. Plus, he had no family to keep him on the straight. Lot to be said for family.
Endeavour: And what if you don’t have any? Do you think that’s how you end up your days? Alone in some two-bob kip, nothing but a bottle for company?
What is worse is that Endeavour found in Beavis flat the same LP he was playing earlier in the episode and that Beavis also liked completing crosswords. Too much Russell, too much.
As I wrote in my previous review, I write honestly. As much as I love the Morse universe I could not in all consciousness write dishonestly. I understand that my honesty may lose me some blog readers but I would rather that happened than me writing a fawning review. I dislike what I often read on Facebook and Twitter where many people would never write a negative word about the series no matter how bad it was. This is either done out of a loyalty to the show, a fear of upsetting other fans or the worst reason because they cannot see beyond their love for Shaun Evans.
I like to believe that you my blog readers would feel cheated and angry if I wrote dishonestly.
My penultimate criticism is that old, lazy ploy used by soap operas of overhearing something important. Three times is was done in the episode; when Leslie Garnier overheard Ronald Beavis and Commissionaire Edmund Gordon from the rooftop; the usherette Betty Perksie overheard De Vere and Leslie Garnier talking and Endeavour overhears Eddie Nero talking to De Vere. Admittedly Endeavour followed Nero but just happens to hear relevant information relating to the case.
I will finish my negative criticism by moaning about the lack of scenes involving Trewlove and the still superfluous role of George Fancy. (please Russell Lewis don’t have Trewlove and Fancy become a couple. If you do the whole country will hear me scream).
So, enough negative criticism. Let us get on to what was good about the episode. Of course the acting was excellent as always. The direction, cinematography and that under-rated talent editing were top notch. (These were all let down by the poor special effects at the end of the episode during the burning down of the cinema). However if the effects were being done to emulate the likes of the Hammer Horror films then well done the special effects team.
The episode had some lovely touches in the shape of having the ‘mummy’ film using Mammoth as their film company. (Morse on that later in the post). My two favourite scenes involved Fred Thursday. The first was when he met Chief Superintendent Bright in the restuarant. Fred gets ruffled when trying to decide what to call Reginald Bright and is thankful for Jim Strange’s interruption. Secondly is when he is telling Endeavour of his love for Saturday morning shows when he was young and his love for Laurel and Hardy. (My brother and I attended Saturday morning shows in my youth. Loved them).
I literally laughed out loud.
I enjoyed seeing Phil Daniels as Fred’s brother but I am still trying to figure out the reason for his appearance. I am going to speculate that Fred retires and joins his brother in his business.
One of the reasons for that speculation is my belief that Fred will retire at the end of this series and that Jim Strange will be moved to another station. I wrote about this in my previous review and it may have been unsuspectingly verified by Shaun Evans in his interview with BBC Radio Oxford. (Click here to listen to that interview). In that interview he said that at the end of the series they all go there separate ways when the Thames Valley merger happens.
Does Bright also move on? Does McNutt replace Fred? Let us hope ITV allows these questions to be answered by not cancelling the series.
I am also looking forward to the conclusion of the story arc involving Eddie Nero.
When Russell Lewis spends time writing about the characters and less about film references and the like he is an excellent scribe. As I said last review . Please Russell forget the film references etc and concentrate on the characters and storyline.
I hope next week’s episode ‘Passenger’ is better and that the series ends on a high. That ‘high’ also goes for the viewing figures.
Episode Jag Rating – out of 10.
The first of music is near the beginning of the episode where we find Morse in his flat. The music is from La Traviata by Giuseppe Verdi an Italian opera composer . The piece is Libiamo ne` lieti calici.
When Morse and Carol Thursday walk off together we hear the song The Girl From Ipanema.
The Girl From Ipanema sung by Astrud Gilberto.
While standing over the body of Ronald Beavis Dr. DeBryn says to George Fancy, “There are more things in heaven and hell, Horatio.” This is a quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
Well said, old mole! canst work i’ the earth so fast?
A worthy pioner! Once more remove, good friends.
O day and night, but this is wondrous strange!
And therefore as a stranger give it welcome.
There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
Thank you to Tim who noted that Valdemar and Curwen are also characters from stories by Edgar Allen Poe ( The Strange Case Of Monsieur Valdemar) and HP Lovecraft (The Case Of Charles Dexter Ward).
No art to speak of in this episode.
Our first location is the cafe where Ronald Beavis is seen.
This cafe is in the Covered Market, Market St, Oxford OX1 3DZ.
Above is the entrance to the market from The High Street.
Here are some pictures of the above scene being filmed. These and others can be found at the brilliant website http://www.simplyoxford.com/
The first arson attack.
This was filmed on the corner of St. Anne’s Road and Gathorne Road Headington.
Below are photos taken by Stephanie of Oxford found on her Flickr account during the filming of the arson scene.
Our next location is Fred and Win’s house.
The address is 10 Ramsey Road, Headington.
Below are more photos from Stephanie of the above location.
Next up is the location of the Roxy Cinema.
This is the Old Carlton Cinema, Essex Road, Islington, London. Renovation work on the building finished in 2015.
Thanks to Jean who pointed out tthe the interior shots with the audience at the Roxy Cinema was filmed at The Broadway Theatre, Catford, London, which used be Lewisham Town Hall.
The next location is where Carol Thursday and Endeavour meet for the first time.
This is St Mary’s Passage, High Street, Oxford.
Of course the phone booth was put there by the Endeavour crew.
Endeavour and Fred visit the Pitt Rivers museum. Museum Of Natural History, Parks Rd, Oxford, OX1 3PW.
Carol waiting for Morse outside the Sheldonian Theatre, Broad St, Oxford OX1 3AZ.
They next visit The Radcliffe Camera.
Up next on Endeavour’s lightning tour of Oxford is Hertford Bridge, often called “the Bridge of Sighs”.
Thank you to Francoise Bergen who pointed out this location.
The above is where the ex policeman, Ronald Beavis, is found dead. The address is 8 King Edward Street, Oxford.
We see George Fancy stand outside The Bear.
But we don’t see him inside the pub only entering it.
We did find George Fancy drowning his sorrows when he has a visit from Trewlove.
I misidentified this pub. It should be The Royal Standard of England, Forty Green, Beaconsfield HP9 1XS.
The same pub mentioned above is also the location for when Endeavour and Fred talk to Eddie Nero.
Actors who appeared in the Endeavour Series 5, Episode 2 ‘Cartouche’ and/or Morse or Lewis.
Robin Weaver as Molly Copperstone
Robin Weaver appeared in the Lewis episode Beyond Good and Evil. In that she plays Pamela Carson.
The next actor is Alan David who played the projectionist Lambert Kegworth.
Alan David as Lambert Kegworth
He appeared in the Morse episode Twilight of the Gods as Sir Watkin Davies.
Alan David as Sir Watkin Davies
David Shaw Parker as Commissionaire Edmund Gordon was also in a Morse episode.
David Shaw Parker appeared in the Morse episode Deceived by Flight as a Forensic Sergeant.
David Shaw Parker as a Forensic Sergeant.
CONNECTIONS OTHER THAN ACTORS TO THE LEWIS AND ORIGINAL MORSE SERIES
When Endeavour is explaining how he believes Beavis was murdered he asks Strange to take a drink of orange juice.
Endeavour hands Strange a straw and he pierces the carton and starts to drink. Endeavour then says “I just killed you.” This is reminiscent of a scene from the original Morse series, ‘The Silent World of Nicholas Quinn’.
Endeavour’s first scene is set in his flat listening to music. In particular he is listening to a recording of La Traviata by Rosalind Calloway.
Of course we met Rosalind in the pilot episode of Endeavour.
Flora Montgomery as Rosalind Stromming
The Pharaoh’s Curse mentioned in the episode is probably referencing the Tutankhamun curse. The belief in a curse was brought to many people’s attention due to the sometimes mysterious deaths of a few members of Howard Carter’s team and other prominent visitors to the tomb shortly thereafter. Carter’s team opened the tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922, launching the modern era of Egyptology.
When Endeavour enters Beavis’s flat Dr. DeBryn greets him by saying, “We meet again Nayland Smith.”
Denis Nayland Smith was Fu Manchu’s enemy. Denis Nayland Smith was a kind of Sherlock Holmes character. They were characters in books by Sax Rohmer.
When Endeavour first visits The Roxy on the cinema screen is news of protests of the Immigration Bill 1968. The Commonwealth Immigrants Act amended the Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1962, further reducing rights of citizens of the Commonwealth of Nations countries (as of 2010, comprising approximately 1.9 billion people, including New Zealand, Australia, The Republic of India, Islamic Republic of Pakistan (which included East Pakistan province), some African nations including Nigeria and many Caribbean islands) to migrate to the UK.
After the first arson attack Bright and Thursday are discussing the incident. Bright says, “The River Tiber foaming with much blood.” This is reference to Enoch Powell’s infamous speech of April 1968. British Member of Parliament Enoch Powell addressed a meeting of the Conservative Political Centre in Birmingham, UK. His speech strongly criticised mass immigration, especially Commonwealth immigration to the United Kingdom and the then-proposed Race Relations Bill, and became known as the “Rivers of Blood” speech, although Powell always referred to it as “the Birmingham speech”. The expression “rivers of blood”, which did not appear in the original speech, is an allusion to a line from Virgil’s Aeneid quoted by Powell (“As I look ahead, I am filled with foreboding; like the Roman, I seem to see the River Tiber foaming with much blood”). He was later sacked by Edward Heath the Conservative party leader.
During a scene in the mortuary Endeavour asks DeBrn if he likes horror films. Dr. DeBryn replies “Cruelty, torture and Kensington Gore.” Kensington Gore is the name of two thoroughfares on the south side of Hyde Park in central London, England. The streets connect the Royal Albert Hall with the Royal College of Art, the Royal Geographical Society and in Kensington Gardens the Albert Memorial. The area is named after the Gore estate which occupied the site until it was developed by Victorian planners in the mid 19th century. A gore is a narrow, triangular piece of land.
Abby Wilson plays the usherette Betty Persky. Betty Persky – the real name of Lauren Bacall.
In this episode there are two characters named ‘Valdemar’ and ‘Curwen’. These names reference the great actor Vincent Price. He played character s in two films with the afore mentioned names in, respectively, ‘Tales Of Terror’ and ‘The Haunted Palace.
When Morse and Thursday visit The Roxy we see this poster for The Vengeance of She.
Here is the actual poster of the film.
It was made by Hammer Films as a loose sequel to the 1965 hit execrable film She.
During the above mentioned visit, Fred talks about what he watched when he was a kid going to the Saturday morning show at his local cinema. He mentions Maroon cartoons. Of course, Maroon Cartoons is a fictional animation feature production studio located in Los Angeles, California from the film Who Framed Roger Rabbit.
He also mentions the western film hero Tom Mix.
Fred also mentions the wonderful Laurel and Hardy. In particular he says, “B I It me. Bit me”.”
The scene is from the 1932 film Helpmates.
When Endeavour takes Carol to the cinema during the showing of the new horror film she mentions the actor Jason Curwin who has walked in. Endeavour of course has no idea who she is talking about. She replies, “The blind violinist in Two Weeks In August. With Diana Day. We have of course met Diana Day in the Endeavour episode, Trove, series 2, episode 1.
Diana Day was a beauty queen hoping for fame and fortune. Looks like she may have found it.
Is it just me or did it not seem strange in the preview for the new up and coming film The Pharaoh Rises that they showed one of the main characters being killed and what looked like the death of the ‘mummy’.
During the above scene Charlie is asking Fred for a loan. Fred asks, “No-one’s leaning on you? The twins? The twins he is reffering to are the Kray Twins, Reggie and Ronnie. A pair of ruthless gangsters who terrorised London in the 1960s.
When Endeavour and Thursday are interviewing Emil Valdemar he mentions that during filming of the original film he shot many years before they had ” returned to the studio (and) were using properties loaned to us by Hearst.” This is a reference to William Randolph Hearst. He was an American newspaper tycoon and business man who made his mark in the erly years of the 20th century. His life was famously portrayed in the excellent film Citizen Kane. The film of course was directed by the genius Orson Welles.
Interesting to see a Mammoth logo at the beginning of the film being shown at the cinema.
Of course Mammoth Screen is a UK-based independent production company. Mammoth It produces drama for key UK broadcasters, especially ITV.
Thank you to Paul Higham for the following points of interest;
The character of blonde starlet Veronique Carlton is inspired by Veronica Carlson – http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0138040/
I also think that Zoltan Xarkoff is a nod to King of the B movies Samuel Z Arkoff – http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0035098/
Equally, the Roxy cinema’s orange squash Wahakari, means “Cheers” in Maori, as the real Kia-Ora of fond memory is a greeting wishing good health.
Edmund Gordon says he came over to the Roxy from the Stoll Moss circuit, a reference to the Moss Empires Group which in its day was the largest chain of variety theatres and music halls in the UK.
Chief Superintendent Bright’s quote to Thursday, “except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain”, is from Psalm 127:1.
Thank you to Ronnie Whitehead who pointed out the following: ‘There was another link to the Carry On series in Cartouche. Morse states that Leslie Garnier had an alibi as last year he was away doing a stint onboard a cruise liner called the “Happy Wanderer”. The Happy Wanderer is the name of the ship in Carry on Cruising.’
Two of my blog readers Mary and Ken Gallacher identified the film poster on the wall on the left.
The film being advertised is The Devil Rides Out based on a Dennis Wheatley novel. Ken wrote that the film was one of Hammer Horror film studios most successful films.
Thank you Ken and Mary.
Bert, one of my subscribers and friends, noticed the following film reference. Fred’s brother and wife are called Charlie and Paulette. Bert believes, and I agree with him, that this is a reference to Paulette Goddard and Charlie Chaplin. Paulette Goddard appeared in Charlie Chaplin’s film, Modern Times.
THE MURDERED, THEIR MURDERER/S AND THEIR METHODS.
Ronald Beavis murdered by Edmund Gordon. Method, poisoned with strychnine.
Leslie Garnier murdered by Edmund Gordon. Method, poisoned with cyanide.
Armand De Vere is shot by Edmund Gordon.
Liam Flynn stabbed by an unknown assailant.
Iain Stuart Robertson as Ronald Beavis
Pano Masti as Pop Gallo
Sophia Capasso as Guilia Gallo
Alister Hawke as Liam Flynn
James Bradshaw as Dr. Max DeBryn
Dakota Blue Richards as WPC Shirley Trewlove
Lewis Peek as DC George Fancy
Robin Weaver as Molly Copperstone
Simon Dutton as Armand De Vere
Anton Lesser as Chief Superintendent Reginald Bright
Luke Hornsby as Kenneth Bullings
Sara Vickers as Joan Thursday
Roger Allam as DCI Fred Thursday
Emma Rigby as Carol Thursday
David Shaw Parker as Commissionaire Edmund Gordon
Linette Beaumont as Paulette Thursday
Phil Daniels as Charlie Thursday
Abby Wilson as Betty Persky
John McAndrew as Leslie Garnier
Caroline O’Neill as Win Thursday
Betty Denville as Veronique Carlton
Michael Levi Harris as Zoltan Xarkoff
Steven Flynn as Jason Curwin
Donald Sumpter as Emil Valdemar
Mark Arden as Eddie Nero