Endeavour Morse will be back

Well, this is very good indeed! News reaches Fedora that the third series of Endeavor is now officially in production. The prequel to Inspector Morse starring Shaun Evans will be set in 1967. In the words of Russell Lewis, who also wrote all the previous episodes (based on Colin Dexter’s novels and the TV show too):

“Our next quartet of mysteries will take the audience on a psychedelic Summer of Love fairground ride, filled with twists and turns, shrieks and scares.”


Left to right: Jack Laskey as DS Peter Jakes, Shaun Evans  as Endeavour, Anton Lesser as Chief Superintendent Bright and Roger Allam as DI Fred Thursday (Image © ITV / Mammoth)

Returning to their roles are Jack Laskey as DS Peter Jakes, Sean Rigby as PC Jim Strange, Anton Lesser as Chief Superintendent Reginald Bright, James Bradshaw as Dr Max DeBryn and Abigail Thaw as journalist Dorothea Frazil.

However, we do not know if Morse’s understanding mentor, DI Fred Thursday (Roger Allam), will be returning, following the cliffhanger at the end of the last season that saw his life left in the balance. We can but hope he will be back, especially since Allam has been pipped to the post as ITV’s new Maigret by, of all thespians, the rubber-faced Rowan Atkinson!

While for some the era it traverses and the overall approach may perhaps be a smidgen too close to the BBC’s George Gently, I believe this to be a superior show in most respects. Yes, the ‘spooky’ episode from the previous season – ‘Nocturne’ – was a bit daft (though it did pay off very nicely with its ironic and sad conclusion), and the corruption case subplot from season two had an odd, James Ellroy ring about it. Generally however, this is a series that has created its own distinctive identity thanks a terrific main cast, smart attention to detail and a desire to repay fans of the original show in subtle but clever ways. In my opinion, Endeavour has proved itself time and again to be a truly worthy successor to Inspector Morse and right from the start has been infinitely more interesting that Lewis, which ran out of steam years and years ago. Can’t wait to see what they come up with.

For further info, see the official press release.

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32 Responses to Endeavour Morse will be back

  1. realthog says:

    I quite like the show, but my wife will be dancing in the streets with glee when she learns about this.

  2. Margot Kinberg says:

    Thanks for sharing, Sergio. Good to hear this.

  3. Sergio, I’m looking at this as a reminder to read my small collection of Colin Dexter novels, especially since I have never read the author before.

  4. tracybham says:

    I have not watched this series. Glad you are looking forward to the next season. I should read more Colin Dexter novels, too.

    • I really think you might want to seek this one out Tracy – well and truly a cut above, especially if you’re a fan of the the original show. The two main leads are absolutely superb.

  5. I’ve enjoyed this series. Russell Lewis is a very good scriptwriter, in my opinion.

  6. Jeff Flugel says:

    This is very good news, Sergio – thanks for sharing it! Strange it took ITV so long to announce it, however. I sincerely hope that Roger Allam returns…the father/son relationship between he and Shaun Evan’s young Morse is the highpoint of the series for me. I agree with you that, despite the slight stumbles of the 2nd series (that police corruption finale and cliffhanger was ridiculous, really), this is a better show overall than GEORGE GENTLY. The period detail and acting is of a high standard, and the mysteries generally superior to those on the past few seasons of LEWIS (which I do enjoy, mainly do to the great chemistry between leads Kevin Whately and Lawrence Fox).

    • Thanks for putting that so well Jeff – as always, I am in complete agreement 🙂 Evans and Allam are the heart of the show, and I hope they are only being cagey for the sake of the plotline! And yes, as always, its the interaction between the leads – I loves the Hathaway/Lewis byplay and that between Gently and Bacchus too. They introduced a young police woman in Endeavour and I hope they do a lot more with her (and start to ficus more on his love of music and poetry too)

      • Todd Mason says:

        I shall have to give this a try…happily, most of these series are getting multiple pleaforms in the US, online and on broadcast tv at least. I’ve barely sampled GENTLY, and haven’t caught any of ENDEAVOUR yet, though. And happy Easter to you, Sergio…are you observant? One of my Mexican friendly acquaintances explained to me last Eastertide that the holiday isn’t such a fuss where she’s from, so it’s always a bit odd for her to see how it’s treated by US Xians…and what’s with all the rabbits?

  7. 282daniele says:

    Buona Pasqua, Sergio.

  8. Mike says:

    Mrs Mike is a massive fan, as she was with Morse and Lewis, but I’ve struggled to share her enthusiasm for it. I think past series are in Netflix so I’ve no excuse really and, when I gave it a chance I really quite liked Morse. I quite like Evans also, and have found him to be a pretty versatile actor.

    • Mrs Mike is clearly a woman of great taste and critical acumen 🙂 I went on at length about my favourite Morse books and TV episodes here but I have yet to find a British detective show that could match it for style, ambition, ingenuity, acting talent and sheer substance, especially if you focus on season 1,2 and 4, when it was at its peak.

      • Mike says:

        I’ll have to point her in the direction of that post and see what she thinks. In truth, she’ll watch almost any crime drama and in that sense ITV has been very good to her over the years, but I’d agree that Morse was a bit special. She has talked about Endeavour’s merits so no doubt I’ll end up giving it a go.

        • Go for it mate – and yes, ITV3, especially when it’s not just an endless Agatha Christie repeat-a-thon, can be a great source of entertainment. Mind you, happen to come across CARRY ON AGAIN DOCTOR the other afternoon and it had been censored throughout (including Barbara Windor’s big reveal while being examined – another ‘iconic’ moment from my youth snipped …)

  9. Santosh Iyer says:

    I have read all the 13 Inspector Morse novels and also the short story collection and enjoyed them. In fact, I possess the entire collection. I also have the author’s book on solving cryptic crosswords.
    However, I am yet to see a TV episode.

    • Santosh, you have a a real treat ahead of you! The TV series changed the books quite a bit, making Morse more likeable and a bit less reliant on booze and not such an admirer of ‘erotica’ – it works very well as its own related work. Dexter wrote original stories for series 2 and 3 – I listed my favourites here before, but I think it’s just the best of its kind, even when they made huge changes to the books (Last Seen Wearing is a case in point -0they changed a lot the plot and came up with a brand new murderer too – and I still thought it was really excellent).

  10. Santosh Iyer says:

    I have just read your excellent post linked by you and I am eager to see some of the TV episodes recommended by you.

    • Thanks Santosh – look forward to hearing what you make of these – start at the beginning if you can – in DEAD OF JERICHO, the debut episode, adapted by Anthony Minghella, we actually see Morse and Lewis meet for the first time. The following two episodes, both brilliantly adapted by Julian Mitchell, THE SILENT WORLD OF NICHOLAS QUINN and SERVICE FOR ALL THE DEAD, pretty much show the series at its best.

  11. Santosh Iyer says:

    I just noted that all the TV episodes are available on You Tube !

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