Hello Endeavourists and welcome to my review of the SECOND episode of the new sixth series, APOLLO.
I have all week off from college so I decided to work all through most of the night and today to get this review finished so I can concentrate on relaxing and catch up with all those little chores that keep getting put off. But mainly just going to do my best and relax.
As always let’s get the boring bits out of the way first,
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Endeavour Series six, Episode Two; ‘APOLLO’.
Chronologically this is episode 25.
First broadcast 17th February 2019.
Is this supposed to be Colin?
If yes, guys stick to photos, drawings and sculptures.
Directed by Shaun Evans. (I’m sure this guy has some connection to the Morse universe but damned if I can think what it is. Think, Chris. Think).
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’.
It’s the time of Apollo 11. Launch date 16th July 1969 and landed on the 20th July 1969.
A Professor Adam Drake, heartthrob and genius is killed in a car accident along with his most recent date, Christine Chase. Professor Drake is a bit of a lady’s man you see. But, Christine was already dead when the car crashed.
Endeavour is now back in a suit and has now been placed back into the Detective Sergeant post. Ronnie Box and Jago don’t like Endeavour and really don’t have much time for Fred Thursday either.
Endeavour is told to keep things simple in regard to the car crash which Box puts down to a murder/suicide.
Will Endeavour keep things simple. What do you think.
(warning, this review will contain some spoilers)
Episode Jag Rating – out of 10.
The two scenes that helped get that 5 Jag rating.
Wonderfully acted. The scene could have fallen into sentimentality but the actors prevented that happening.
Lovely scene and as I have written below I believe this will become Morse’s iconic red jag by the end of this series.
I am really disappointed that many on Facebook cannot see the value of having a character such as Ronnie Box and Alan Jago in the Endeavour world. The series needed a bad guy. It needed a villain we will love to hate.
For the last few series is was becoming like a love in in the Cowley police station. I liked Jack Laskey as DS Peter Jakes. I missed him when he left. Jakes was the dissenting voice that raged against much of the sycophancy that was being aimed at Endeavour. The Endeavour series needed that.
I doubt that Box or Jago will be leaving anytime soon and if that’s true I for one am happy about it.
(N.B. ALL ‘MODERN’ MUSIC IS THE MUSIC PLAYED IN THE ORIGINAL UK BROADCAST. DUE TO COPYRIGHT AND COST THE MUSIC YOU HEAR IN OTHER COUNTRIES WILL BE A GENERIC PIECE NORMALLY WRITTEN SPECIFICALLY FOR THE EPISODE)
The first piece of music we hear is at the opening of the episode as we see Endeavour sitting in his room at the police station house living quarters.
Che Gelida Manina from Puccini’s La bohème.
Libretto and translation.
Che gelida manina, What a frozen little hand,
se la lasci riscaldar. let me warm it for you.
Cercar che giova? What’s the use of looking?
Al buio non si trova. We won’t find it in the dark.
Ma per fortuna But luckily
é una notte di luna, it’s a moonlit night,
e qui la luna and the moon
l’abbiamo vicina. is near us here.
Aspetti, signorina, Wait, mademoiselle,
le dirò con due parole I will tell you in two words
chi son, e che faccio, who I am, what I do,
come vivo. Vuole? and how I live. May I?
Chi son? Sono un poeta. Who am I? I am a poet.
Che cosa faccio? Scrivo. What do I do? I write.
E come vivo? Vivo. And how do I live? I live.
In povertà mia lieta In my carefree poverty
scialo da gran signore I squander rhymes
rime ed inni d’amore. and love songs like a lord.
Per sogni e per chimere When it comes to dreams and visions
e per castelli in aria, and castles in the air,
l’anima ho milionaria. I’ve the soul of a millionaire.
Talor dal mio forziere From time to time two thieves
ruban tutti i gioelli steal all the jewels
due ladri, gli occhi belli. out of my safe, two pretty eyes.
V’entrar con voi pur ora, They came in with you just now,
ed i miei sogni usati and my customary dreams
e i bei sogni miei, my lovely dreams,
tosto si dileguar! melted at once into thin air!
Ma il furto non m’accora, But the theft doesn’t anger me,
poiché, poiché v’ha preso stanza for their place has been
la speranza! taken by hope!
Or che mi conoscete, Now that you know all about me,
parlate voi, deh! Parlate. Chi siete? you tell me who you are.
Vi piaccia dir! Please do!
Who could Endeavour be thinking of while listening to this? Mmmmmmmm
Three and half minutes into the episode we get Benjamin Professor Adam Drake in a car and plays an eight track cartridge of, once again, a Led Zeppelin track, Whole Lotta Love
Thank you to Sean Evans (no not thee Shaun Evans) who commented on the above Led Zeppelin track, “Whole Lotta Love was on the Album: Led Zeppelin 2 as track 1. Not released until 22nd October 1969. Although, same as last week, the track was broadcast on John Peel’s Top Gear show this time on Sunday 29th June.
So how it could be heard via 8 track is a mystery unless… that clever cohort of scientists did a bootleg recording and managed to get it onto an 8 track cassette.”
Thanks Sean who is not Shaun.
Thursday comes home to find the record player playing. It’s a song by Dinah Washington, Mad About The Boy.
One bloody piece of classical music! One!!!!
When Thursday and Endeavour interview Mrs Humbolt at the tennis courts she remarks, “I never heard anything more grotesque. It was an academics’ wine and cheese, not The Masque Of The Red Death!”
The Masque of the Red Death is a short story by American writer Edgar Allan Poe. It was also a film is a 1964 horror film directed by Roger Corman and starring Vincent Price based on the short story.
When Strange and Thursday are interviewing the Slayton’s about where they were when Eric Gidby apparently committed suicide, Hildegard says’ “A solitary supper and then I took Jacqueline Susann to bed.” Strange thinks she is admitting she is a lesbian.
Strange’s reaction is priceless. Jacqueline Susann was an American writer and actress. Her first novel, Valley of the Dolls, is one of the best-selling books in publishing history
Morse talks to Joan at her office about Flora Humbolt.
He tells her she looks, “Very “Soviet milk yields are up this quarter, Comrade. It’s very Doctor Zhivago.” He is of course referencing the film that starred Omar Shariff and Julie Christie and based on the novel by Boris Pasternak. He says that she looks like the actress who played Julie Christie’s daughter.
Lara’s daughter in the film is seen at the end of the movie and is played by the British actress Rita Tushingham.
In the same scene Morse and Joan have a little spat,
Joan “You know, you can be a real prick sometimes.
Endeavour “Oh.Nice language. Thank you, Emily Dickinson.”
Emily Dickinson (1830 – 1886) is a wonderful American poet.
Thanks to Justine who noted, “In the scene with Thursday and Bright that you have a clip of, they talk about the Apollo mission and Bright says “Man’s reach, Thursday.” This is a quote from a Robert Browning poem: “A man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?”
The Browning poem is, ‘Andrea del Sarto’. Andrea del Sarto was an Italian painter from Florence, whose career flourished during the High Renaissance and early Mannerism.
Thank you to Alexis who pointed out this biblical reference, “A reference made by the Windqvist’s housekeeper might be a little opaque to many of us since we aren’t as familiar with biblical characters as past generations were. She says that Mr. Windqvist was a “right Hosea.” I think she was referring to his wife’s behavior as God told Hosea, “Go, take a harlot wife.” (Hosea 1:2).’ Thank you Alexis.
Thank you to Mary Anne who pointed out when Bright says that the pelican has become “an albatross around my neck,” he’s of course alluding to Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner.”
This is in the Humbolt’s house. The painting on the wall is I believe a Lucien Freud.
If it is I can’t find it anywhere on Google. So, that means I can’t put a name to it. There is so little art in the Endeavour that I thought I should at least mention this even if I can’t find the name of the painting.
The first shot of the episode. Atlas & Hercules holding up the world.
This is a sculpture on the top of the Radcliffe Observatory.
Second location at about two and a half minutes into the episode.
This is High Street, Great Missenden, HP16 0AA
Thanks to Françoise for the information.
Next we have, well come on we all know what this location is (and if you don’t you will may have your Morse Club Card taken from you and torn up) but for the uninitiated it is Hertford Bridge, often called “the Bridge of Sighs”, is a skyway joining two parts of Hertford College over New College Lane in Oxford.
The two thugs run into this building being chased by Box and jago.
They are running down New College Lane into Hertford College.
After visiting Max in the mortuary Endeavour and Thursday visit the Radcliffe Observatory..
See above for details of the Radcliffe Observatory.
Morse and Thursday visit another observatory.
This is UCL Observatory at Mill Hill in London. 553 Watford Way London NW7 2QS.
The location of Heaviside Studios. Unidentified. UPDATE 18th November 2020. A huge thank you to Peter Robinson who identified the building below. It is BRE Bucknalls Lane Bricketwood Watford WD25 9NH. Peter also told me that the location was used in the wonderful film, Dam Busters.
No idea where this is. Looks like an industrial estate. The original Thunderbirds, Stingray etc were created is now an industrial estate in Slough.
This is the buildings that once housed Gerry and Sylvia Anderson’s 21st century films. Buildings now part of a large industrial estate.
Here is an interesting film about the studios.
Endeavour and Thursday talk to Humbolt about his car brakes being tampered with.
This is Keble College, Oxford.
We again see the outside of what is supposed to be the Social Work Department. The building is part of Hertford College.
Up next is the home of the Humbolts. Unidentified
The home of the Wingqvists. A huge thanks to Mark who kindly contacted me to let me this location. Mark is an architect and recognised it as Quilter House, Green Lane, Prestwood, Buckinghamshire, England. It is now called Clayton House. The architect was Peter Aldington.
The above pictures were taken some time ago and that is why the door is a different colour. Thank you again Mark.
The Humbolts said they were in Christchurch Meadows. But probably not.
I think they are sitting in Merton Field going by the buildings behind them and the distance from them.
The bench, put there by the film crew, is probably about where the white mark is on the field.
Van Horne’s Institute. Thanks to Julia and La Gazza Ladra I have found the location.
It is on Canterbury Road, Oxford.
The last location where we find Endeavour sitting in his car.
This is of course in front of Radcliffe Camera, Oxford.
Thanks to Ian who mentioned in the comments section that what was supposed to be the magistrate’s court,
is in fact the entrance to Keble college library the entrance door to the library can be seen on the right.
Thank you to Tom who pointed out that the car crash scene was filmed at Longcross Film Studios test track.
Tom said that the test track is used by film and TV companies and in particular is used by car magazines.
No pubs again like last week’s episode.
Actors who appeared in the Endeavour Series 6, Episode 1 ‘PYLON’ and/or Morse or Lewis.
Sophie Winkleman played Regan Peverill in the Lewis pilot episode, 2006.
CONNECTIONS OTHER THAN ACTORS TO THE LEWIS AND ORIGINAL MORSE SERIES
None that I could see unless you count the foreshadowing in Max DeBryn’s parting words to Endeavour and Thursday as they leave his company, “Inspector. Morse.”
Led Zeppelin’s Whole Lotta Love was used a s the theme tune to the BBC’s Top of the Pops. Top of the Pops, also known as TOTP, is a British music chart television programme, made by the BBC and originally broadcast weekly between 1 January 1964 and 30 July 2006. The Led Zeppelin track Whole Lotta Love was use as TOTP’s theme from 5 November 1970 to 14 July 1977. Update 19th Feb’ 2019. Guy in the comments section pointed out that the version used for Top of the Pops wasn’t the Led Zeppelin original, it was a cover by Alexis Korner’s Collective Conciousness Society. A man of my years should have known that, 🙂
So is Dr. Larry Humbolt named after Humboldt County, California, populated by a mix of hippies and rednecks and one of America’s most unique farming communities, with around 30,000 people (more than a fifth of Humboldt’s population) involved in growing marijuana. 😉 Or Friedrich Wilhelm Heinrich Alexander von Humboldt (14 September 1769 – 6 May 1859) a Prussian polymath, geographer, naturalist, explorer, and influential proponent of Romantic philosophy and science.
Dr. Larry Humbolt talking to Professor Adam Drake at the party says, “You might have made more of the part played by British know-how. No Tom Bacon, no fuel cells. No fuel cells, no moon.” Tom Bacon, full name Francis Thomas Bacon (1904 – 1992), was an English engineer who developed the first practical hydrogen–oxygen fuel cell.
While talking to the car mechanic Endeavour asks if there was a log book, (Your V5C, also known as a car log book, is proof that you are the registered keeper of the stated vehicle). The mechanic replies, “Worthy of Nevil Shute.
Nevil Shute Norway (1899 – 1960) was an English novelist and aeronautical engineer.
In the same scene as above the mechanic refers to the people responsible for the dodgy car, “Which is no surprise, seeing as he bought it from the Winsome Welshmen.” Thursday adds, “Dudley and Dunstan.”
In the excellent 1960s film School for Scoundrels the dishonest car salesmen called themselves the “Winsome Welshmen”, Dunstan played by Dennis Price and Dudley played by Peter Jones.
Again during the same scene above we see a black jag.
This is the car that Endeavour drove Fred around in for the previous series apart from the pilot which had the licence plate UFF 325. I’m thinking that this car could become Morse’s iconic red jag. This could be how he was able to afford such a car on the wage of a Detective Sergeant. Watch this space! If i’m right feel free to congratulate me on a great observation. If i’m wrong feel free to laugh.
Tom and Karen in the comments made an excellent point in regard to the Jag. They felt the Jag was a metaphor for the Cowley ‘gang’ being broken apart. I have to admit that this makes more sense than my overly romantic notion about the red Jag.
Update 19th Feb’ 2019. Tom in the comments pointed out to me that the iconic red Jag with the distinctive number plate was actually seen in the pilot episode.
Damn me and my romantic notions of seeing the red Jag s in the Endeavour series. That and my all too often senior moment in forgetting the Jag appeared in the pilot episode.
Is this an allusion to Scientology?
Of course Jeff and Hildegard Slayton are based on Gerry and Sylvia Anderson the makers of such shows as Thunderbirds, Stingray etc. In this story Geoff and Hildegard are brother and sister but the Anderson’s were man and wife. Sylvia Anderson was the voice of Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward in Thunderbirds.
Since this episode is about the scientific community I am wondering if the puppet studio is named after Oliver Heaviside, an English self-taught electrical engineer, mathematician, and physicist who adapted complex numbers to the study of electrical circuits.
Gerry Anderson’s puppets were fitted with miniaturised electronic components.
In the background is a model of a house.
This is a replica of Lady Penelope’s house from the Thunderbirds series. That might also be a puppet of Lady Penelope on their desk.
When Morse and Thursday first meet the brother and sister team Hildegard and Jeff Slayton, Jeff refers to his new show as “Bonanza in space.” This is how the original Star Trek was described as in the 1960s.
In one scene involving the puppets Luna is said to be mute. This will be a reference to Marina, a mute mermaid in the Gerry Anderson show Stingray.
The institute leader is called Gabriel Van Horne. A Patrick Van Horne is best known for starring in the film Swingers. This episode is about a group of swingers so…
During a scene between the Humbolt children the little boy asks for butterfly kisses. This is where two people flicker their eyelashes together. This reminded me of the film starring Kevin Costner, The Untouchables. In that film Kevin Costner’s character Eliot Ness has butterfly kisses with his daughter.
Mrs Gidby, when being interviewed by Endeavour and Thursday, says that her husband when he goes off by himself, “When the black dog was on him.” Black dog is an oft-used phrase to mean depression and was thought to have been first used by Winston Churchill.
Endeavour is talking to Dorothea and she says, “Jim Strange is poking about this spate of heroin deaths. Eddie Nero’s game, wasn’t it?” So Strange is still looking to find George fancy’s killer though no one else seems interested.
Morse is talking to Flora Humbolt about Adam Drake.
She says that her mother called Adam, “Un ami de la maison.” Which translates as ‘a friend of the house’.
During the sequence where the Dinah Washington song Mad About The Boy is playing we hear Adam Drake ‘s voice on a recording say the words, “Tell the truth and shame the devil.” These exact words were said by Fred in the episode Pylon when he was trying to determine if he should hand in the case with the bloody hammer in it into evidence.
Mark B mentioned a reference I should have seen as I am a fan of the British radio show. Mark wrote Maybe “Mrs Trellis is a reference to the regular correspondent from “I’m sorry I Haven’t A Clue”. Something of a busybody, her usually inappropriate and unintentionally hilarious letters are read out at the beginning of each show.” I wager you right Mark and I can imagine Russell Lewis also being a fan of the show.
Some people were asking about the white desk in Van horne’s office. I asked Paul Cripps the set designer on Endeavour about it and he said it is a Maurice Calka Boomerang desk. It also comes in other colours.
Kris and Terry, two of my readers, spotted a lovely connection to the Apollo missions. Donald Kent ‘Deke’ Slayton was NASA’s Director of Flight Crew Operations at the time of the moon landing. Slayton was the surname of the brother and sister who ran the puppet film company.
Another of my website readers, Andy, noticed an error in the scene where the children are looking up at the sky. “When the children are lying on the bench towards the end, the girl points out constellation Orion in the night sky. Orion is only visible in winter whereas the episode is set in the summer, presumably shortly before the moon landing on July 20th 1969.
Thank you to Tom who pointed out that the car crash scene was filmed at Longcross Film Studios test track. Tom said that the test track is used by film and TV companys and in particular is used by car magazines.
Thanks to Garry Webb who pointed out this error on the paperwork: a misspelling of ‘constabulary.’
FRED THURSDAY’S WORDS OF WISDOM.
On visiting Professor Drake’s rooms Morse picks up a book. It’s title is How To Live A Happier Life. Fred remarks “Maybe he never finished it.”
Endeavour makes a joke, “Funny.” says Fred, “There’s a compere spot going down the Legion, but I wouldn’t hold your breath.”
(The ‘Legion’ refers to the British Legion. The British Legion is a British charity providing financial, social and emotional support to members and veterans of the British Armed Forces, their families and dependants. They have places where they can meet and socialise. They will have clubs where they can socialise and there they may hold events like Bingo or entertainment in the form of singers, comedians etc.)
THE MURDERED, THEIR MURDERER/S AND THEIR METHODS.
Eric Gidby. Shot by Hildegard Slayton.
Died from a fall.
Professor Adam Drake.
Hildegard Slayton cut the brake line and removed the brake fluid and tried to make it look like it was Eric Gidby. That was because he believed that Isobel Humbolt, who owned the car Adam was driving, was the person responsible for the death of his first wife. But it wasn’t it was the registered keeper of the rear part of the car. The front and the back were welded together apparently by one of Eddie Nero’s men.
Michael Parkhouse as TV Anchor
Sophie Winkleman as Isobel Humbolt
Sasha Willoughby as Flora Humbolt
Katie Faye as Christine Chase
Benjamin Wainwright as Professor Adam Drake
Sargon Yelda as Dr. Larry Humbolt
Oliver Chris as Dr. Elliot Wingqvist
James Bradshaw as Dr. Max DeBryn
Shaun Evans as DS Endeavour Morse
Richard Riddell as DS Alan Jago
Roger Allam as DI Fred Thursday
Simon Harrison as DCI Ronnie Box
Sean Rigby as DS Jim Strange
Sara Vickers as Joan Thursday
Charlotte Bradley as Mrs. Trellis
Ross Boatman as Mac Honeydew
Alice Orr-Ewing as Natalie Wingqvist
Caroline O’Neill as Win Thursday
Anton Lesser as Chief Superintendent Reginald Bright.
Robert Hands as Eric Gidby
Terenia Edwards as Marilyn Gidby
Blake Ritson as Gabriel Van Horne
Mary Stockley as Hildegard Slayton
Matthew Cottle as Jeff Slayton
Abigail Thaw as Dorothea Frazil
Alison Newman as Viv Wall