ENDEAVOUR: ‘Quartet’ S5E5; Review, Music, Locations, Literary References etc.

Hello fellow Endeavourists and Morsonians. Sorry for the lateness of my post. Been a little under the weather. Feeling better now.

Here we are at the penultimate review for the fifth series of Endeavour. Will my review be a favourable one? I have been hearing on the old grapevine that in some quarters of social media I am persona non grata due to my having the temerity to criticize some people’s beloved TV show. There are times when one has to open their eyes and see that one’s favourite show is not perfect.

Many of my favourite shows over the years have had clunkers amongst their oeuvre. Many of my favourite film directors have made bad movies. (Alfred Hitchcock’s Family Plot to name one), The same goes for my favourite actors. (Meryl Streep in The Homesman to name but one). My favourite singer for 50 years, David Bowie made a few bad albums (Tin Machine anyone). A few of my favourite writers have written what I believe are either bad or mediocre novels.

No one likes having their favourite TV show, film, actor, singer being criticized but their are times when one has to grow a thicker skin and realise their favourites are not infallible.

Anyhoo let me started on my new post. I have included a video as a starting point for my review please watch that first.

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Endeavour Series five, Episode five; ‘Quartet’.

Chronologically this is episode 22.

First broadcast 4th March 2018.

Where’s Colin?

Difficult one this week. I could be wrong in this but the chap who was sitting at the back of the pub in the final scene did have a look of Colin Dexter.

Also, Endeavour looks at him as the scene fades to black.

Directed by  Geoffrey Sax . Geoffrey also directed the Endeavour episode, Neverland (Series 2, Episode 4)

Written by Colin Dexter (characters), Russell Lewis (written and devised by). Russell has written all the Endeavour episodes. He also wrote;

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’.

SYNOPSIS

A participant in a TV game show is shot and killed. A stray bullet hits a little boy and puts him in hospital. The killing of the German participant leads Endeavour into the deep and dangerous world of spies and espionage.

REVIEW.
(warning, this review will contain some spoilers)

My daughter and I

Fred Thursday says to Morse, “All this with the cloak-and-dagger mob? It’s not my idea of coppering.” And it’s not my idea of Morse. Russell Lewis the episode writer seems to be fumbling about in the dark trying to think of how many references, tropes, genres and allusions he can fit into one episode. Was this Foyles War or a Harry Palmer film, or a John Le Carre Film, or a James Bond movie. It tries to be them all and all it did was make the whole thing a mess.

It wasn’t the worst episode of the series but that particular bar wasn’t set that high anyway. I had an epiphany regarding one reason why I am so disappointed  in this series; because I know that Russell Lewis is a better writer that this. For God’s sake he wrote one of the best Morse episodes, ‘The Way Through the Woods‘. He wrote some of the best Lewis episodes. The first three series of Endeavour were great. The fourth series was patchy but the fifth is a huge disappointment.

I write here not to bury Russell Lewis and the Endeavour show but live in hope to praise it once again in the future. I do hope that it gets a new series if for no other reason than to allow Russell to give us better episodes. I want Endeavour to go out on a high. But for the moment the fifth series is obvious, messy and devoid of any sense of the Endeavour Morse character.

The show has become one of the cookie cutter dramas that litter the TV channels. The original Morse series was ground breaking but this fifth series has turned Endeavour into a series that is groundless:  empty and  unreliable.

The cast, production team and Matthew Slater the composer are propping up a building that may soon be condemned. The cast and the rest deserve better.

Some of my problems with this episode are as follows:

  • Why were almost the whole CID team (including DeBryn) at the game show. Morse attending a television show? Morse never owned a TV. TV was an anathema to Morse.
  • Why did Fancy’s limp disappear by the time his next scene was shown?
  • Yet another Mills and Boon scene of will they or won’t they with Endeavour and Joan.
  • Morse manages to get into a building, Fenix, which you would imagine was heavily guarded and very secure.
  • The villian, Fenix, puts the Woodstock Inn key into the fish tank chest but leaves it showing.
  • Eddie Nero in one scene is about to take on Fancy and Strange but when the man who is trying to take over his ‘patch’ enters his pub he does nothing. If that had been the Krays Cromwell would have sleeping with the fishes before they had finished drinking their tea.
  • As for Cromwell Ames. Did he pop into Nero’s place on his way home from school? And that phoney accent!!!!!
  • Surely everyone knew that it was Joe Dozier that was dead and not his wife. This ploy of setting up a storyline to make it look like one character is going to die but ends up being their partner/wife/husband etc has been used many, many, many times. Boring and obvious.
  • Once again Russell mentions Europe, Brexit, Boris (Johnson) etc. He must crowbar in those modern day references.
  • What was it about the smell of perfume on Joan made him suddenly rush off to Fenix laboratory?
  • James Bond has had less attempts made on his life.
  • What was the point of the boy being shot other than giving Endeavour the chance to show how much he cares. It was a blatant attempt to pull on the heartstrings and i’m sure it worked on some people. The subplot (if it can even be called that) was pointless. Take that subplot from the episode and it doesn’t hinder the episode’s progression.
  • Another high body count. Five.

Predictions for the last episode:

  • Thursday does not retire due to his brother not repaying the loan. Thursday can no longer retire.
  • Fancy gets shot and killed. Probably in the middle of a gunfight between Eddie Nero’s gang and Cromwell Ames’s lot.
  • Bright either retires or becomes head of the new police force.
  • Strange is moved to another police station.
  • Joan finds a man and Morse is once again brokenhearted.

Episode Jag Rating – out of 10.

 

The idea for this video popped into my head when I realised how often Endeavour earnestly asks but what about the little boy’.

MUSIC

At last some classical music. At the very beginning we have Handel’s Coronation Anthem No. 1 (Zadok the Priest) for chorus & orchestra. HWV 258.

Stirring stuff. The piece is played again about five minutes into the episode when we see Prof Alexander Richmond conducting to the music.

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When the Jeux Sans Frontiers show is being announced we can hear the theme that was used for the British show It’s a Knockout,

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During the episode the tune of London Bridge is falling down could be heard coming from the radio in the shed.

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LITERARY REFERENCES.

The episode starts with someone quoting from Shakespeare’s Henry V.

Now entertain conjecture of a time
When creeping murmur and the poring dark
Fills the wide vessel of the universe.
From camp to camp through the foul womb of night
The hum of either army stilly sounds,
That the fixed sentinels almost receive
The secret whispers of each other’s watch:
Fire answers fire, and through their paly flames
Each battle sees the other’s umber’d face;
Steed threatens steed, in high and boastful neighs.

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Morse finds a book of  William Wordsworth poetry. The book is marked by a photograph and one of the poems seen is Composed upon Westminster Bridge, September 3, 1802.

Earth has not anything to show more fair:
Dull would he be of soul who could pass by
A sight so touching in its majesty:
This City now doth, like a garment, wear
The beauty of the morning; silent, bare,
Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie
Open unto the fields, and to the sky;
All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.
Never did sun more beautifully steep
In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill;
Ne’er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!
The river glideth at his own sweet will:
Dear God! the very houses seem asleep;
And all that mighty heart is lying still!

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We also glimpse another poem above the poem mentioned above. This is titled “BROOK! WHOSE SOCIETY THE POET SEEKS

BROOK! whose society the Poet seeks,
Intent his wasted spirits to renew;
And whom the curious Painter doth pursue
Through rocky passes, among flowery creeks,
And tracks thee dancing down thy water-breaks;
If wish were mine some type of thee to view,
Thee, and not thee thyself, I would not do
Like Grecian Artists, give thee human cheeks,
Channels for tears; no Naiad should’st thou be,–
Have neither limbs, feet, feathers, joints nor hairs: 10
It seems the Eternal Soul is clothed in thee
With purer robes than those of flesh and blood,
And hath bestowed on thee a safer good;
Unwearied joy, and life without its cares.

ART

 

No art to speak and what was shown I couldn’t identify..

LOCATIONS

Thanks to Jean for pointing me toward the location of the shops above. The location is on the corner of Malvern Road and Priory Road, Hampton.

Here are some pictures from the Richmond and Twickenham Times newspaper during filming.

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This is Brasenose College shown near the beginning of the episode when Albert Mullion is walking through the quad.

The scene where Morse interviews  Dr. Gerhardt Schneider is also Brasenose College. Radcliffe Camera can be seen in the background.

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This was Amber Lodge in the episode. Thanks to Jean for giving me this location. It is Penn House
Penn Street, Amersham, HP7 0PS. Apparently it is often used as a film and TV location.

Image result for Penn House Penn Street Amersham HP7 0PS

 

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Morse is back on Ship Street, Claudine’s abode.

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Morse follows Singleton.

The building in the background is the Royal Albert Hall.

Image result for the royal albert hall

I think the stairs that Endeavour climbs while following Singleton are the same stairs that Harry Palmer (Michael Caine) fights the henchman in the excellent film, The Ipcress File.

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Eddie Nero’s place The Hope and Anchor which was ‘done over’.

The building is on the corner of Macbeth Street and Riverside Gardens, London.

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Outside Joan’s flat, Museum Road, Oxford.

The Fenix buildings look like CGI.

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Next is the location of where the opening ‘games’ were being held.

This looks like it was filmed at Christ Church Meadow. I believe that to the left in the background is Christ Church and to the right in the background is Merton College.

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Woodstock Inn. Again I couldn’t identify this location. Update: Thank you to Coco who directed me toward the location of the above. It is St Katherine’s Parmoor, Frieth, Henley-on-Thames RG9 6NN. Apparently it has also been used as a location for Midsomer Murders.

Image result for St Katharine's Parmoor

Image result for St Katharine's Parmoor

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Jim Strange’s flat which he shares with Morse. Sorry, couldn’t figure out this location.

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The bridge on which Fancy and Trewlove are kissing is the High Bridge over River Cherwell, Oxford.

 

Thanks to David Howkins for letting me that the scenes in the underground station were shot in the disused Aldwych station in London.

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Thank you to Peter Hardy, or more accurately his wife, who spotted the following locations. Peter’s wife once worked at the following location.

First up is the office of the Bond like baddie, Sebastian Fenix.

This is the Mayor’s Parlour at the Hammersmith Town Hall. The hallway where Morse and Fenix exit is also the Town Hall.

Image result for Hammersmith Town Hall

Image result for Hammersmith Town Hall

The above is affectionately known as the marble hall.

 

PUB LOCATIONS

The two pub scenes are shot in The Royal Standard of England, Forty Green, Beaconsfield HP9 1XS.

 

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Actors who appeared in the Endeavour Series 5, Episode 5 ‘Quartet’ and/or Morse or Lewis.

Richard Durden as Prof Alexander Richmond. See below for further details.

Andrew Paul as Joe Dozier. See below for further details.

CONNECTIONS OTHER THAN ACTORS TO THE LEWIS AND ORIGINAL MORSE SERIES

Morse finds this newspaper cutting in the files Frazil sent him.

This is a reference to the Morse episode, Death is Now my Neighbour. Investigating the murder of Rachael James Morse picks up a card in her home.

Of course this episode starred Roger Allam as Denis Cornford.

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I believe that this episode gave us our first two actors who have appeared in all three series; Morse, Lewis and Endeavour.

Richard Durden appeared in the first episode of the original Morse series, Dead of Jericho.

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Richard Durden as Alan Richards.

Richard appeared in the Lewis episode, The Soul of Genius as John Gracey.

Next up is the second actor to have appeared in all three Morse series, Andrew Paul.

Andrew Paul as Joe Dozier

Andrew appeared in the Morse episode, Deceived by Flight as a suspect in an arson attack.

vlcsnap-2014-08-17-15h42m04s247

Andrew appeared in the Lewis episode, Intelligent Design as Ron Tibett.

Miscellaneous

The TV show in the episode is called Jeux Sans Frontières which can mean ‘Games Without Borders’. It is based on an execrable  British show called It’s A Knockout. It’s a Knockout! is a British comedy game show first broadcast in 1966. It was adapted from the French show Intervilles, and was part of the international Jeux Sans Frontières franchise.

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The Oxford Mail reporting the first manned Apollo space mission. Apollo 7 was launched from Cape Kennedy, Fla., with astronauts Wally Schirra, Donn Fulton Eisele and R. Walter Cunningham aboard, beginning an 11-day mission in Earth orbit. It was the first successful manned mission of the Apollo program.

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The character of Julian Calendar

also appeared in the Endeavour episode, Canticle.

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Pfuscher the East German killed near the beginning of the episode was said to be from Werfen, Bavaria. This was the name of the location castle Schloss Adler in war movie Where Eagles Dare starring Richard Burton and Clint Eastwood. In that film it had the immortal line uttered by Burton, “Broadsword calling Danny Boy“.

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Morse almost gets himself killed when following a clue in Sebastopol Terrace. This name was the street featured in the excellent and classic British sitcom Sykes, starring Eric Sykes and Hattie Jacques.

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The Scottish actor Ellie Haddington who played Miss Bagshot also appeared in Foyle’s War as Hilda Pierce. The series  starred Michael Kitchen. (Michael of course appeared in the Morse episode The Death of the Self).

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Bright says to Thursday, “This is a family game show in Oxford not the Mexico Olympics.” I can only assume he is referring to the medal award ceremony for the men’s 200 meter race, when black American athletes Tommie Smith (gold) and John Carlos (bronze) took a stand for civil rights by raising their black-gloved fists and wearing black socks in lieu of shoes.

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We find out that Dorothea Frazil wrote a book called My Time in Korea. (Korean War, 1950, began when North Korea, supported by the Soviet Union and China, invaded South Korea, which was supported by the United States. War ended in 1953). The Korean War was the backdrop to the film and wonderful series M.A.S.H.

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When Morse first meets Singleton in the tube there is an advertising poster on the wall.

I’m assuming the perfume ‘Verpertine’ is a reference to the James Bond character in Vesper Lynd in the film and novel Casino Royale.

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During the same scene mentioned above we see a headline next to the newspaper vendor.

This is alluding to the events in 1968 on 13 October the Imperial War Museum was attacked by an arsonist, Timothy John Daly, who claimed he was acting in protest against the exhibition of militarism to children.

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Singleton and Louis reminded of two characters in the film The Lady Vanishes. (The original).

Basil Radford and Naunton Wayne in The Lady Vanishes (1938)

Naunton Wayne (on the right) as Caldicott and  Basil Radford as Charters

The characters of Charters and Caldicott appeared in numerous films.

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When Louis and Singleton are talking with Morse, Louis asks “Do you still love your country?” Morse fires back with, “Do you still beat your wife?” Morse’s question is what as known as a loaded question or complex question fallacy. It’s a question that contains a controversial or unjustified assumption. The traditional example is the question “Have you stopped beating your wife?” Whether the respondent answers yes or no, he will admit to having a wife and having beaten her at some time in the past. Thus, these facts are presupposed by the question, and in this case an entrapment, because it narrows the respondent to a single answer, and the fallacy of many questions has been committed.

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When Thursday is in the Hope and Anchor pub he replies to Strange, “Forget it Sergeant it’s Summertown.” This must be a reference to the excellent Jack Nicholson film Chinatown.

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On first meeting  Sebastian Fenix he asks Morse if he would like a drink. He tells him that his secretary makes a martini to die for. A reference of course to James Bond’s favourite tipple.

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When Joan is walking with Morse she asks how things are living with Jim (Strange). Morse replies, “It’s hardly the yellow house. This is in reference to a house shared by Vincent Van Gogh and Paul Gauguin  in Arles, France.

Image result for the yellow house van gogh

Endeavour is probably alluding to the mundane life he and Jim are living in their house compared to the erratic, turbulent life Gauguin and Van Gogh had led while they shared a house. Their is an excellent book titled The Yellow House by Martin Gayford. Well worth reading.

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During the same conversation above Endeavour tells Joan he should have enough money saved by the following year to buy a house. Joan replies by saying that didn’t Jane Austen have something to say about a single man in possession of a good fortune. Joan is paraphrasing one of the greatest opening lines of a novel, “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife”. From one of the greatest novels ever written, Pride and Prejudice. Endeavour then says “I doubt it will be Netherfield Park.” Netherfield Park is the large mansion leased to Mr. Bingley and his sisters in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Mr. Bingley is a friend of Mr. Darcy.

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Singleton and Louis pick up Endeavour after he has broken in the Fenix building. Louis says, “The factory also did work for the chemical warfare boys at Porton Down.” Porton Down is home to two UK Government facilities: a site of the Ministry of Defence’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) – known for over 100 years as one of the UK’s most secretive and controversial military research facilities.

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Millie Bagshot tells Morse that Danulka died two months ago when the Red tanks rolled into Prague. This is reference to the Soviet Union led Warsaw Pact troopsinvasion of Czechoslovakia to crack down on reformist trends in Prague.

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Thursday says Do svidanya, tovarishch to Albert Mullion when he puts him in the police car. That Russian phrase just means goodbye and tovarishch means friend or comrade.

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Thanks to Maria and Jackie for pointing out Fred Thursday’s reference to the 1960s show Dangerman. The series featured Patrick McGoohan as secret agent John Drake. The reference is made when Morse is bringing Thursday up to date about his meeting with Singleton and Louis and the attempt on his life.

Image result for dangerman

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Thanks to Lee Sylvester for pointing out that Mullion the porter is probably a reference to Skullion from Tom Sharpe’s wonderful novel Porterhouse Blue?

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Thanks to Paul Higham who commented that Dr. Schneider may be a reference to “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” as Schneider means Tailor in German. Paul also pointed out these possible references;

“I think the characters of Singleton and Louis are an “homage” to Pendleton and Harcourt from “Edge of Darkness”. Zooming around London in eccentric choices of car and urging Morse/Craven to break into Fenix’s factory/Northmoor.”

“The Dozier’s shop front features a fairly prominent advert for Grimsby Pilchards, which were also in the Diana Day
advertising hoarding which was progressively defaced in each episode of Series 2.”

“Morse and Claudine’s punting excursion maybe a nod to James Bond and Sylvia Trench’s similar outing at the beginning of “From Russia With Love”. Miss Bagshot packs a Walther PPK which was also the pistol Bond was forced to adopt by M in “Dr. No” instead of his preferred but underpowered Beretta.”

Thanks Paul. Great observations.

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Kirsten Baron noticed a few interesting things. She wrote “…the dead man’s name was Pfuscher – the German verb pfuschen usually means to bodge, bungle, carry out badly, but also to cheat or steal.
The perfume company was called Fenix, which I read as Phoenix but it was pronounced like Fenwicks, the department store.”

Thanks Kirsten.

Photos from the wonderful Blog http://www.simplyoxford.com

All rights are of course the photographers.

 

THE MURDERED, THEIR MURDERER/S AND THEIR METHODS.

KGB agent shot by Miss Bagshot.

Prof Alexander Richmond shot by Albert Mullion

Joe Dozier died of a broken neck. Killed by Elsie Dozier????

Karl Pfuscher shot by the who the hell knows. Well actually it was the Russian who tried to kill Morse.

Werfeli garroted by the Russian

CAST

David Reed as Julian Calendar

 

Ian Bartholomew as Albert Mullion

Shaun Evans as DS Endeavour Morse

James Bradshaw as Dr. Max DeBryn

Sean Rigby as DS Jim Strange

Roger Allam as DCI Fred Thursday

Anton Lesser as Chief Superintendent Reginald Bright

Jennifer Tollady as Zoe McLean and Hector Bateman-Harden as Steven McLean

Caroline O’Neill as Win Thursday

Abigail Thaw as Dorothea Frazil

Claire Ganaye as Claudine

Mary Roscoe as Elsie Dozier

Nico Rogner as Dr. Gerhardt Schneider

Richard Durden as Prof Alexander Richmond

Andrew Paul as Joe Dozier

Brendan Patricks as Singleton

Leander Deeny as Louis

Ellie Haddington as Millie Bagshot

Paul Ready as Sebastian Fenix

Mark Arden as Eddie Nero

Dakota Blue Richards as WPC Shirley Trewlove

David Jonsson Fray as Cromwell Ames

 

Author: Chris Sullivan

With the death of my father a few years ago I have became my mum's full time carer. I am also in the process of writing a book on the TV series, Lewis.

66 thoughts

  1. Great review Chris. -007 Morse? Dangerman – Oh dear!!! This episode just didn’t seem to know what it wanted to be and hence ended up not being anything. I had to re-watch the Ep several times to figure out why they were all at that game show. I can’t say I hated it just acknowledge (for me) this is not the same series. As you say Chris it has gone from a head above the rest to cookie cutter sameness. Could I enjoy this if it wasn’t called Endeavour ? Not sure. Maybe I should just say goodbye to the series. I have had to do that before with other series – it is like saying goodbye to a beloved friend – I just never had to with Morse, Lewis and after the first few series never thought Endeavour would be one of them !

    Really I just need to let the people who enjoy and love this series do so and stop moaning about what was and isn’t anymore and pissing them off with my critical comments on other platforms.

    Again – acting was great- as always Allam amazing. Especially his and Morse’s final scenes. Sara Vickers is always great in the few scenes she is given and loved the guest stars (even if their storylines beggared belief)

    Shaun Evans acting always great too but strangely the acting in the scene where he finds out about Claudine going not nearly a patch on what he has conveyed before – I.e the last scene with Joan in Coda and in her apartment in Lazaretto/the scenes with Rosalind Stroming in the pilot.

    I think it might be goodbye from me after the next Ep.

    1. Hi Maria, I think Endeavour’s feelings for Claudine aren’t near what they were for Rosalind and Joan, and that he is more and more losing hope, prepared for disappointment. So to me it made perfect sense that his reaction was not that emotional, and I think it was acted with that intention.

      1. Jo – Great insight – I really noticed it – was almost a shrug (but of course more) none of that amazing inner pain that I think Shaun does so well. So I think you are right so even better acted.

      2. Josephine – I agree your thoughts on Endeavour’s response to Claudine leaving. He kinda already knew she was leaving when he saw her “spring cleaning” and as she said a picture is worth a thousand words. Also, Endeavour has lost that hang-dog, kicked too much look he had in season 1-2. He is just as passionate, but now he keeps those emotions tucked inside. You could tell he was piss about her leaving when he said to Joan “Was she sorry?”.
        But this is from a man that was gonna drop Thursday a line when he moved to London and didn’t go to Jakes going away party.

      3. Agreed. And from their rainy night conversation heard earlier on, it also sounded like Claudine made it clear up front that they were “just having fun,” so even though we know that a sensitive guy like Morse was feeling/hoping for more, it probably wasn’t a total surprise. He was already suspicious when he saw her “spring cleaning” her flat.

      1. Chris – I am sure that Thursday referenced that during the Ep – I will have to go back and find when.

  2. Hi Chris – It really has become for me “what would Chris say”! I’ve been waiting your article since the airing. Absolutely enjoyed reading it. How kind of your daughter to appear to support her Dad! Thanks to you both.

    Here’re few things I’ve found re: locations, fyi:

    [Dozier’s]
    https://twitter.com/robinofoakley/status/970392413985492992

    https://twitter.com/robinofoakley/status/971108964707561473

    [The Game Show field] – perhaps filmed in a couple of different locations? Or CGed later?
    https://www.instagram.com/p/BZbvYFeF2gP/

    Keep up the good work!

  3. For info. The scenes in the underground station were shot in the disused Aldwych station in London.

  4. I totally agree with Chris’s review of the episode – a mash up of all sorts of 60’s iconic films. I would hate this to become a trend, but as a one off it made an entertaining, rollicking ride. I think the writer should be allowed to go off piste occasionally, as long as it doesn’t become a habit. They did this in Morse when he investigated the victorian murder in The Wench is Dead and although it isn’t one of my favourite episodes it was interesting in its own way.
    I was born in 1965 and absolutely loved It’s a Knockout and Jeux sans Frontiers – in my defence I was probably 5 at the time. All the countries took great pride in hosting Jeux sans Frontiers, as it was an early way to showcase their country. the games were themed to show aspects of their culture, for example the the German hosted show would have contestants throwing bratwurst into a barrel or filling perspex containers with beer.
    I agree that Russell Lewis probably makes too many references to todays politics, but as I share his views I don’t mind, and I don’t think it’s bad to see the casual racism of the 60’s called out as we see a shocking slip towards acceptance of those types of attitudes again in the UK and further afield.
    Hilda Pierce from Foyles War is one of my all time favourite characters, so to have Ellie Haddington pop up in Endeavour was a joy.
    Looking forward to the last episode in the series, especially as it looks like Thursday will stay on. Like your theory about Fancy being caught in the crossfire. Let’s hope there’s an announcement on a new series soon.

  5. Hi Chris v good review (at last thankfully)

    1. If season finale proves to be much of the same downgrade Jag rating to Lancia model!

    2. Worry not about social media! I also have ruffled their feathers and been quoted in double exclamation marks! Far better l say to be personna non with the twittersphere than Sid and Gerald Fletcher.

    3. To continue my analagy in addition to reminding me Nelson in Life on Mars especially dialect and phrasing Cromwell Ames reminds of Daniel Mays character Jim Keats who had something of the devil about him although he looked a lot older

  6. As Thursday says in this episode, they’re ‘meat and 2 veg’ policeman. The introduction of Special Branch, MI5 etc., not for the first time, just does not ring true. Such a shame this series is being dragged down to the level of other TV crime dramas.

  7. Hi Chris, all too true in your review. This series is becoming something of a mess and I struggled to fathom out what was going on. I seem to be getting distracted waiting for whatever references are getting shoehorned into the script – saying that, Albert Mullion the college porter…could this be a reference to Skullion from Tom Sharpe’s wonderful novel Porterhouse Blue?

    Here’s hoping for something better next week – and your prediction of Thursday being unable to retire as he’s lost his savings to his brother seems a very good call.

  8. Dear Chris, Thank you for the great work on finding out about the locations, actors, references etc. – especially seeing the incredible number of references that are made in each episode. I am glad I don’t recognise half of them as it would only distract me from enjoying the show. And I did enjoy this show. Some gaps or too obvious things in the story, indeed Mr. Lewis may be too distracted by all the references himself. And yet another political lecture (Brexit/Boris) got me truly annoyed and spoiled the fun for a few minutes but I decided to forget it. Like I said before, the story doesn’t come first for me. This episode had a good pace, tension, I loved the music, the whole atmosphere felt right even if not everything was perfect. Maria asked herself: would I have enjoyed it if it hadn’t been Endeavour? I would say, yes, I would have. There was plenty to enjoy, it was well done, entertaining and captivating.
    Some of the twitter comments about your blog aren’t really fair. I don’t believe you watch the show just to find something to moan about, I believe you are sometimes disappointed and frustrated because you care. But there is also no need to be sarcastic.
    Perhaps over analysing doesn’t help to enjoy the show. Even, or especially, if you are right and they are wrong.
    And perhaps Endeavour shouldn’t be compared with Inspector Morse all the time. Endeavour is it’s own show and has some different trade marks, starting with S3. More exotic stories, more action, more bodies. I don’t think the show needed it, S1 and 2 were fantastic and successful so why change the formula? But there were probably good reasons that we don’t know about.
    Since I have been taking each new episode “as it comes” I can enjoy them much more. There really is plenty to enjoy still, but I am with you in hoping that if S6 comes, Endeavour will go back to its original perfection in all aspects.

  9. Good review – I agree that Endeavour is not at its best at the moment but for all its silliness this episode was fun and not as bad as that awful Egyptian themed one a few episodes back!

    Just a couple of thoughts firstly Endeavour refers to Big Ben whilst looking at a picture of the tower – surely someone as exact as Endeavour would have said St Stephen’s Tower not the more common misconception that the tower is called Big Ben.

    Secondly the perfume manufacturer tells Endeavour that he is asking questions “above his pay grade” – surely that is a modern phrase at least in the UK – I certainly didn’t hear it before circa 10-15 years ago.

    Just a couple of thoughts.

    Best wishes and thanks for the good work.

    Terence

  10. I have to say I haven’t found this series as compelling as before and I found some aspects of this episode properly baffling so much so that I didn’t realise as much until the next day. Max being at the game show seemed a step to far. Could understand the others being there to support Fancy, even Morse, albeit likely reluctantly but it obviously was just to facilitate him saving the boy -and have to agree with you Chris that was a bit superfluous to the plot. Endeavour wanting to pursue an enquiry even though he has been told not to isn’t exactly unusual or unexpected so the “what about the boy” was unnecessary.
    The jeopardy aspect I think is being truly overdone, he could have croaked it 3 times in Colours and this one with the fish just seemed ridiculous, to paraphrase Endeavour himself, it’s not The Saint!

    The will they won’t they with Joan is just annoying now. Morse is 30, Joan mid 20s and it’s been ongoing 3 years, and no I didnt get the ‘smelling her perfume’ thing either – just seemed like an easy out for him to leave, AGAIN.
    Although the indication that women just find him too intense and gloomy is put across well. I have thought since early on Fancy is a goner, Fred won’t be able to retire because Charlie can’t pay him back and the series will end as has been indicated with them all receiving notice of where they are going to be stationed with Cowley closing which allows them to end it there and complete the story or if it is recommissioned to then decide which characters can reappear or have chosen to retire instead of move (Thursday/Bright) and introduce new ones. Either way it ends with loose ends tied up. Plus Joan gets a regular bf and at last that’s the end of that storyline. Hurrah.

  11. I re-watched the very moving ‘Home’ yesterday. We’ve come a long way since then. Not necessarily in the right direction.

  12. Well, this is a special occasion for me because I get to make a comment on your blog about an Endeavour episode in “real time” instead of years later.

    I’m glad you noted that certain aspects of this episode are very puzzling. I don’t get how smelling Joan’s perfume launched Endeavour into action either. As for the key thing, my thinking was that the German guy purposely hid that hotel room key in the fish tank when he broke into the same building. Remember “Frick and Frack” told Morse he’d also broken into the factory but came up empty handed?

    As for the opening scene and why practically the entire cast are all at the game show … yeah awfully convenient, right? I have an engineering background and this sort of thing bugs me too. Recently, though, I overheard two women talking about mystery novel plots and one of them indicated that she didn’t care how preposterous an opening sequence might be. What she liked was the thrill of the chase as the perpetrator is tracked down and brought to justice. That was a revelation to me.

    Honestly, I do not have high hopes for the season finale. Your idea about Fancy getting shot is very reasonable. That could add a certain amount of gravitas to the proceedings, but unfortunately for me I have zero interest in the whole gang war sub plot and yet that will no doubt occupy a significant amount of screen time.

    My favorite thing this time out was your comments about “The Yellow House”. (I had no idea.) Kudos to Russell Lewis for working that it into the script and to you for ferreting it out.

  13. I am willing to overlook a certain number of things. Everyone at the games event– sure why not? I love Max DeBryn and was happy for him to have a moment of heroism, which he characteristically downplayed.

    I also am totally fine with the body count in this episode because all the murders logically followed from one another (except Dozier which had an entirely separate motive). What I dislike are the serial killer storylines, like Sway and Muse and Cartouche where you have someone just knocking people off in rapid succession.

    But as for Morse breaking into the factory, I can’t suspend my disbelief that far. I also can’t swallow the room key situation. German spy rents out an extra room to hide his microfilm. OK, doesn’t the hotel staff notice the room is not occupied and mention it to police in the course of inquiries?

    I don’t know what to make of the conversation with Joan.

  14. I enjoy reading your reviews, but must beg to differ with your assessment of this episode. I really enjoyed it.

    Endeavour is my all time favorite television program. I don’t watch much t.v. and rarely watch police/detective/crime programs, as I dislike the violence. However, this program, from the Pilot on through, has been fantastically entertaining and so very well done. I will be very sad it if it is not recommissioned. I there is much more for Endeavour, and us, to learn.

    Each episode has created a little ‘world’ of 60’s pop culture atmosphere in which to tell a story. I like some better than others, and perhaps the Cold War spy culture of this wasn’t as interesting as ‘Canticle’, with the Fab Four types or ‘Coda’, with the bank robbers, but I found it entertaining nonetheless, which is, I think, the purpose of it all.

    I realize these blogs are really for sophisticated consumers of mystery and crime and I am just an average viewer looking for a little escape from reality for an hour or two, so my comments are not as erudite as most. If others feel the quality is diminished, I do not, but perhaps a return to four episodes a season might give the writer more time to focus on each story. I do think Russell Lewis is an outstanding writer, superb at dialogue and character development. I have been very happy with the plots, which keep me guessing.

    The thing I like best about Endeavour is the way it lauds the core values of our society, the integrity, honor and commitment to excellence of the characters, the fact that they work hard, and then harder still, until justice is served, and their compassion and humanity for those they deal with, all so deftly articulated by Mr. Lewis. It is very inspiring.

    Thank you for keeping this wonderful and interesting blog, and for letting me comment.

      1. Eleanor – such a lovely review and points – as I mentioned for me the series has changed too much but that it is and will continue to be enjoyed by others is well reflected in your review.

        One thing I have noticed – I don’t think the series has been nearly as supported as in the past. A number of articles to kick it off but not much support since – I noticed that in the TV mags this week no special articles or interviews on the last Ep and in a couple of them it does not even make the viewing highlights for that week or evening. Has anyone ( in the U.K) noticed any trailers on TV ?

        Your predictions Chris – agree.

        That Joan goes I accept but with maximum frustration that we have had 3 years to go …. nowhere!

        I add that I think that Morse/Trewlove are being set to work together next season (I note she goes undercover with Morse this week and also Dakota’s interviews say as much) and series 6 will be be another “will they / won’t they” – that will be very disappointing to me as the crime fighting UST duos is so done and formulaic but I suspect it works from a ratings POV

        Also think the French girl will be back – her being written in so intensely and the written out did not make any sense to me.

  15. I love your review Eleanor and like all the other contributions and reviews, what I really enjoy is that they present a different angle and something else to think about. Mostly I end up appreciating aspects I hadn’t considered which positively add to my experience. Your comment is very erudite and illuminating so thank you for sharing.

  16. The one thing I enjoyed in this episode was the return of the classical music and the integration (even in a minor way) of the colleges into the story line. This season of Endeavour has strayed away from the things that made Morse and Lewis distinctive from all the other mystery shows, but at least in this instance it at least played lip service to the rest of the franchise. Excellent review as always Chris, and I too love your turn in front of the camera

  17. Enjoyed as usual your take- although I always see the good in each program- you point out everything so we can get a better picture of what is actually going on. Your video talking to your daughter was very humorous ;o)

    1. Thanks Bertie. It’s no bad thing Bertie seeing good in each program. I think if I was just a viewer I would enjoy the show more. However, being a blogger and reviewer I have to scrutinize and criticize the episodes. I’m glad you liked the video. I don’t think the RSC will be calling on my ‘talents’ anytime soon. 😉

  18. “But what about the Little Boy ?” asked Endeavour again.

    “Well Morse,” replied DCI Fred Thusday, “it’s a little thin but wasn’t ‘Little Boy’ the code name of the atomic bomb the Americans dropped on Hiroshima. Those Japanese do a lot of whaling, they’ll be getting that ambergris that Fenix was illegally importing to add to their perfume. Now I think those Americans took control of ambergris production when they occupied Japan after the war and just to rub it in they made Atomic Bomb perfume and sold it in little bomb shaped bottles, we seized a few crates must of been about 20 years ago now, I got Win a couple of bottles.”

  19. Chris, may I ask, in your little piece to camera with your daughter, is that a framed Dalek I spy on the wall? Would this make you a Dr Who fan too? Good man!

    When you were ragging about the various other shows and mentioned Harry Palmer it suddenly hit me that if you put the iconic specs on Shaun Evan’s he wouldn’t be a bad likeness for Harry. What about an updated version of the ‘Ipcress File’ with Shaun in the lead role? Too silly? Funnily enough I watched ‘Funeral in Berlin’ again last night – just superb! Such a shame I wasn’t born a little earlier in the last century.

    1. I personally wouldn’t like to see a remake of Ipcress File but of course with the right director and a good actor like Shaun it might work. Yes, I am also a Dr. Who fan of some 50 years.

  20. Sorry me again, wasn’t the guy that Harry Palmer tackles on the steps on the Albert Hall code named ‘Bluejay’ or was that the boss that Major Dolby was in league with?
    Sorry you have got me going now. Such fun!

    1. Hi Davey. I think Bluejay was the main villain and not the bodyguard. Ipcress File, great film and great soundtrack. John Barry at his best.

  21. Hi Chis!
    Thank you for your review.

    Could you please correct Dasvidanya? It’s wrong. Goodbye will be Do svidaniya. 2 words.
    Please trust a native speaker)
    Also I believe this phrase is somewhat weird:

    “That Russian phrase just means Dasvidanya means goodbye”

  22. Chris,

    I think the characters of Singleton and Louis are an “homage” to Pendleton and Harcourt from “Edge of Darkness”. Zooming around London in eccentric choices of car and urging Morse/Craven to break into Fenix’s factory/Northmoor.

    I also think Fenix himself owes quite a lot to Hugo Drax and I’m not sure I’d want a Martini to die for made by Miss Borgia! Fenix also says “Money…….good for anything that ails you”, which is a play on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrsyp0FBBnI

    Dr. Schneider may be a reference to “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” as Schneider means Tailor in German.

    The Dozier’s shop front features a fairly prominent advert for Grimsby Pilchards, which were also in the Diana Day
    advertising hoarding which was progressively defaced in each episode of Series 2.

    Morse and Claudine’s punting excursion maybe a nod to James Bond and Sylvia Trench’s similar outing at the beginning of “From Russia With Love”. Miss Bagshot packs a Walther PPK which was also the pistol Bond was forced to adopt by M in “Dr. No” instead of his preferred but underpowered Beretta.

  23. Hi Chris.
    I don’t know whether anyone else has mentioned this, but I wondered whether the Shergolds Hardware shop, two doors away from that of the Doziers, was a reference to Shergolds Ironmongers, who in the 1960’s were based at 87 London Road Headington.
    This was very close to the Manor Ground where Oxford United Football Club used to play their home matches.
    During that decade the club’s match day programme invariably featured an advert for Shergolds on it’s front cover.
    Hope this is of some interest.
    Kind regards.
    Phil Malcolm.

  24. I watched this episode on catchup, and found it a bit of a creepy coincedence, that with its cloak and dagger theme, spies, Russian associations etc that it was first transmitted on the day of the Salisbury Incident.

  25. Hi, I’m a huge Endeavour fan (love the period setting and the references to other films etc) and have only just found your blog. I really appreciate your detail-work!

    Something I noticed in this episode is the strong resemblance between Ellie Haddington’s speech mannerisms and Alan Rickman’s. I’ve not seen her in anything else, so don’t know if it’s deliberate or if she always speaks like that?

    1. Hi Kirsten and welcome to my website. Regarding Ellie Haddington, that is her normal speech pattern.

      1. Me again. Running the risk of being perceived as being a little obsessive we have also spotted at the left hand end of the cgi for the Fenix factory nestles what looks like Hammersmith Town Hall as a whole. Of course being obsessive is what your great blog is all about!

      2. I literally laughed out loud on reading your comment because you’re correct regarding obsessiveness. The word ‘obsessive’ should probably be in the title of my website somewhere. 🙂

  26. Thank you for elucidating re Haddington!

    A couple of things that I think nobody has picked up on yet, and which may or may not be meaningful:
    the dead man’s name was Pfuscher – the German verb pfuschen usually means to bodge, bungle, carry out badly, but also to cheat or steal.
    The perfume company was called Fenix, which I read as Phoenix but it was pronounced like Fenwicks, the department store.

  27. “Endeavour then says ‘I doubt it will be Netherfield Park.’”

    I watched that scene three times and, while I HOPE that is what he said (as it is an accurate reference), what I THOUGHT he said was Mansfield Park. And when I heard that, the Jane Austen nerd inside me died a thousand deaths…

    Guess I have to go back and check again. Oh, for subtitles!

    1. I don’t understand, surely your inner Jane Austen nerd would die a thousand deaths with either, as Netherfield Park and Mansfield Park are both from Jane Austen.

      1. Because the quote Joan mentions is the opening line of Pride and Prejudice, so Netherfield Park is what “fits.”

        “A young man in possession of a good fortune” is in reference to Mr. Bingley at that point, and Netherfield Park is his home.

    2. (Can’t seem to reply to your reply) I most ardently apologise Michele I had completely forgotten the context as to why Morse had said that, but I’m guessing I might of noticed if he had got it wrong. I’d just like to point out that I did post my comment against my own better judgement.

  28. Totally agree with you. While the episode kept my interest, it didn’t feel like a ‘Morse’ episode. Felt more like those bad post-war Foyle’s War episodes. I also didn’t like the season long arc about Nero. It’s stretches my imagination to believe that there was this massive seedy underworld in Oxford of all places. Morse is better with self-contained plots, not season long arcs. And then… the final episode it all seemed pointless anyway.

  29. The Fenix factory is the Stag brewery in Mortlake south west London as viewed from the river Thames with a building CGI’d in the middle.
    Cheers

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