ENDEAVOUR: My Thoughts on How The Series Will End.

Hello everyone and welcome to a new post. This particular post is a little different in that it will be a short essay on how and when I believe the Endeavour series will end.

I was discussing with two friends, Henry and Graham, about the subject of when Endeavour will come to an end. Henry wondered, “Can these series run in to the 70’s?  I wonder if Mr. Dexter had any reservations on stopping Endeavour getting close to his first book.”

Graham answered Henry’s question “The time line of the books is completely different from the time line of the various TV series; lets not forget that Morse meets Lewis in the books in the mid 1970’s but in the TV time line it is not until 1987.”

Henry also noted that, ” It’s impossible for the current Mores to become a DCI within five years. Also Endeavour needs to meet DCI McNutt to learn the craft of detection as mentioned in the books and show. Of course continuation of the series will all depend on UK viewership. Time will tell. Again thanks.”

All this discussion got me thinking on the subject of how and when the Endeavour TV series will end. As for when the show will finish I believe, as I have done so for a long time, that there will only be 33 episodes. The original Morse series and the Lewis series both had 33 episodes. Kevin Whately who played Lewis insisted that the series end at 33 episodes so as not to supersede the original series and overshadow the memory of John Thaw.

My belief has always been that the series will finish in 1970. I believe that after this series there will be only six more episodes making the total 33. So either a series 7 with 6 episodes. Or a 7th and 8th series with 3 episodes each.

I think Russell Lewis the creator and writer of the Endeavour series will, like Kevin Whately, not want to supplant the Lewis or the original Morse series.

Personally and from an abstract point of view I would be annoyed if the Endeavour series went beyond 33 episodes. I also believe another reason the series will not go much further is because Shaun Evans will want to spread his acting and directorial wings further. One has to remember that if the series goes to a seventh or eight series that will mean Shaun Evans and Roger Allam will have been working on the series for around seven years. For many actors that is a long time on one series as one character. I think Shaun Evans will want to move on to other roles while he is still relatively young. Or he will want to direct films. He has been taking an interest in directing for a reason and it’s not just to direct the odd episode of Endeavour or Casualty.

For those who watched the original Morse show when it first aired and maybe for those who have watched it recently the character of Desmond McNutt looms large and his character is a huge part of the lore around Morse. McNutt appeared in the episode Masonic Mysteries (one of my and the majority of the fans of the original series favourite episodes).

Of course Thursday mentions McNutt while sitting in the pub with Morse in the episode Neverland, Series 2, episode 4.

My opinion regarding McNutt, is that he will appear in the final scene of the final episode. The scene will go along the lines of this; Thursday retires. We have an emotional scene between Thursday and Morse. Thursday leaves the police station leaving Morse looking forlornly toward Thursday’s retreating back as he leaves through the detective’s office door. Or the scene is set somewhere on the streets of Oxford and Thursday walks off leaving Morse wondering if will ever get a better mentor than Thursday.

Morse walks/drives back to the police station. He arrives and there is word of a new DCI arriving at the police station. Morse sits at his desk considering his career as a police officer. The door of the office opens. Chief Superintendent Bright enters with another man. Morse and all the police officers stand up. Bright says, “Gentlemen, I would like to introduce DCI Desmond McNutt. The camera cuts to Morse looking at McNutt. McNutt looks at Morse. There is a look between them of recognition even though they have never met. The camera stays on Morse who gives an almost imperceptible nod of the head and smile. Fade out to the Inspector Morse theme.

What do you think? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section.

Author: Chris Sullivan

After having looked after my mum for some 11 years she is now unfortunately in a nursing home. I'm afraid her dementia worsened as did her physical capabilities. So, for the first time in 21 years I find myself no longer caring for anyone. Apart from my mum I was also a single parent to two children and also looked after my dad who had Alzheimers, (he died in 2005). So, I have decided to return to University to try and get another degree this time in English Literature. (My other degree I got some 30 years ago is one in Ecological Science. Firstly I have to complete an intensive year at college which starts at the end of August 2018. If I pass the college year I will then be able to go straight into Edinburgh University. A busy time ahead made even busier by my writing a book on the TV series, Lewis.

24 thoughts

  1. I think your final scene is perfect. We don’t need to see more than that. And I agree on the 33 episodes too. It depends on actors availability and commitments, and wishes, if they will make 2 S of 3 or 1 S of 6 episodes.

  2. Hi chris,
    I think you have hit the nail on the head, in that the series will not breach 33 episodes. Too much rides on it and precedents have already been set.
    Your imaginings of how McNutt might be introduced could just earn you a ‘treatment’ fee from the production company! It seems the ideal way to introduce him without really having to establish the character in any way.

  3. I rather like your idea on the ending of Endeavour. The final scene particularly feels so right, the reference to the original show is definite yet subtle enough, just as it was in the ending of the first Endeavour (so in a sense, I find that such an ending would bring the show full circle). I also agree on the number of episodes, they should follow the example of Lewis and end at 33.

  4. Sounds great! You should be a consultant. I’m thinking even there should be fewer than 33 episodes. 30 maybe with then a 31st one as a double length special with the ending as you describe.

  5. Love it Chris – but I still think that Thursday will come to a bad end either death or somehow mixed up in something nasty that Morse has to expose or Thursday blames him for. I just often think how to explain never mentioning Thursday in the later series. But then again he only really mentioned McNutt because of De Fries so maybe I over think!

  6. DI Thursday is not the only one that needs to have an end. Only Strange and DeBrym translate to “Morse “, so what becomes of their characters? Bright, like Thursday can retire, but Joan? Seems the choices are a marriage or a bad end. Lots of things that need wrapping up.

  7. I wonder if what they’re setting up starting last season with Fred’s difficulties with his brother, and the flying squad might be the start of his undoing? The trailer for season 6 appears to show Fred in difficulties and I could see his character coming to an end due to the problems suggested in series 5. That might leave McNutt to come in and pick up the pieces from Fred’s fall and would lend credibility to why Thursday is never mentioned by Morse in the original series (who ever mentions the disgraced) and why he always considered McNutt his mentor.

    1. That’s an interesting idea Tom. I have wondered if Russell Lewis will address the elephant in the room, Thursday not being mentioned in the original series or Colin’s books. Yes we know Fred Thursday is a Russell creation but it will be interesting if he does address Fred’s existence in the Morse Universe. Certainly the disgraced angle would be a good one. However, would Endeavour fans be happy with that outcome.

      1. Killing off characters has become, I feel, a bit cheesy. I would have Thursday follow the money, and retrieve it, but at the cost of being obliged to retire. The character of Joan can be matured and play a significant role in the recovery, as her influence on her father increases. Then the family can emigrate, a move initiated and organised by Joan.
        As Joan evolves, her intelligence and independent character prevent any relationship with Morse developing very far. Morse, fond as he is of women and sex, never manages to maintain a relationship, much as he would like to. And he’s not too good at friendships, either.
        Somewhere in the thinking must be “where do we go after Endeavour?” Maybe somewhere in this, or the probable final series, lies the answer. Unless Mr Fox can be persuaded to come back for Hathaway, which I reckon could be brilliant.

  8. Ah, you’re probably spot on, Chris, but I hate to think of it ending as it brings on a Morse-ian type melancholy.

  9. I agree with you Chris and others that the Thursday disgrace has potential and would make better drama but he as you said Chris he is a much loved character (for many more than Endeavour) so fans may not be happy- also then taints all the earlier episodes on repeat.

    I must admit I think the Joan/Endeavour thing has gone on for too long to do nothing at all with it and I believe that death is the most likely exit for her character and I think like Fancy was she is a dead man walking. I thought he was going to be killed the minute I saw him and I have the same feeling about Joan. Whether that will be in this series or next. I can’t see her hanging around in the series as just a friend to Endeavour especially if he is to have other romances. That never seems to work in other dramas when they try that.

  10. What a great ending you have composed, Chris – although it makes me quite sad to think of this series ending!! I also hate to think of Thursday dying but especially don’t like the idea of his reputation being sullied — you’re right, we fans of his would definitely not go for that!! Of course, many of us have been hoping for an Inspector Hathaway (with the lovely Laurence Fox) as someone mentioned earlier!! Hathaway would (kinda-sorta) extend the Morse tradition, albeit once removed from the original. Now I am truly more than a bit melancholy.

  11. Some interesting ideas but I’m less convinced. For me, the big last scene is probably the Jag. If Shaun Evans can be persuaded to keep going perhaps with yearly feature length specials like the later Morses, then we could get to him rising to Inspector (not DCI). That would be the perfect time to buy a then-cheaper Mark II. There is room to introduce McNutt as Thursday and Morse move apart in their new stations. But would McNutt be acceptable to current fans and Evans/Allam, unlikely. Can a series have two alpha males? Perhaps McNutt could be the more philosophical mentor figure for the maturing Morse. The current writers may well be taking the Evans line that this show is separate from Morse and apart from a few crumbs, the links are unimportant. But I’d still finish with buying the Jag. ☺

    1. Hi Marcus. You could very well be correct in regard to the Jag being in the final scene of the final episode. It’s certainly another trope that has to be addressed before the end of the Endeavour series.

  12. Interesting too that Shaun mentioned in an interview that in this series Morse will buy a place in Oxford that will the same place that the older Morse lives in – so after that the jag would be the right next step in series 7 (which I think will be the last – least of all because I think Shaun Evans is getting bored/frustrated with doing the part – It comes out in lots of interviews in my opinion)

    1. That’s interesting in regard to Endeavour buying a place. John Thaw’s Morse’s house which was in Ealing, West London not Oxford. In 2009 it hit the papers when squatters moved in, wrecked the place, and it got boarded up. The last I heard was that the Newcastle Building Society bought the place, renovated it and were looking for £2million pounds. I suppose they could reconstruct the facade of the house in a studio or use CGI. Looking forward to see what they do.

      1. I remember seeing those news reports now – had completely forgotten. I am sure they could reconstruct it enough for the show. I worry a little when I read about series 6 and the LED Zeplin music – I think it is a shame that the great music from the original series and indeed the earlier seasons of Endeavour seemed to have gone.

      2. I fear the house was bought by a non-Morse developer who rather I sympathetically added a large, soul-destroying extension. Urgh. So, exterior Ealing shots not a runner. I don’t think it was a flat though, was it? Would a DS be able to afford a large house in Oxford in 1969?

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