Set in the 1960s, the show follows Endeavour Morse in his early years as a police constable. Working alongside his senior partner DI Fred Thursday, Morse engages in a number of investigations around Oxford.
With the help of DS John Bacchus, Inspector George Gently spends his days bringing to justice members of the criminal underworld who are unfortunate enough to have the intrepid investigator assigned to their cases.
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First broadcast in 1987, the Inspector Morse series is a crime drama based on the Colin Dexter novels of the same name. The show is based around the exciting exploits of Morse - a senior officer within the Criminal Investigation Department of the Oxford Police - as he investigates heavy crimes in and around Oxford with his sidekick, Sergeant Lewis. Morse is a grumpy classical music aficionado who loves beer, and who frequently loses patience with the earnest but somewhat slow Lewis. Written by
Colin Dexter named his two main characters after his favourite crossword compilers, Sir Jeremy Morse and Mrs. B. Lewis. Some of the other characters and places are named after local streets in Summertown (north Oxford) where Colin Dexter lives: Rawlinson Road (Ruth Rawlinson in Inspector Morse: Service of All the Dead (1987)), Aldrich Road (Phil Aldrich in Inspector Morse: The Wolvercote Tongue (1987)), Hobson Road (Laura Hobson, the pathologist in Series 8-12) and Lonsdale Road (Lonsdale College which features in several episodes). See more »
[as Lewis makes a chance remark which unwittingly provides Morse with a major clue]
You've done it *again*, Lewis!
See more »
The flute in the theme music spells Morse's name in Morse code. Also, it sometimes spells the name of the murderer(!) and sometimes the name of an innocent character, to throw knowledgeable listeners off the trail. See more »
Based on average crime novels by Colin Dexter, this is truly one of the times that the television version actually surpasses the novels in quality and makes the stories come alive and touch the heart and the mind. What makes this series so compelling, like the Duchess of Duke Street, Rumpole and Foyle's War, is the main character and the actor who created this marvelous,complex and compelling character. John Thaw and the producers/writers who worked with him made this a timeless series in the only way possible: make the lead character charismatic and intriguing (and extraordinarily well acted). It is virtually impossible for a series to last beyond several episodes based only on plots (I know, many will argue with this, but I stand my ground). The series has to be character driven to maintain its brilliance, episode after episode--in this case 33 episodes. That is not to say that the plots are unimportant, but only that they are clearly secondary to Morse and his relationships with those around him--especially his sergeant and his superior. But most important are his relationship with life and his values and the way he chooses to live his life; these are especially enthralling for a t.v. series (or movie or play or novel for that matter). I highly recommend this show--even for those not normally inclined to watch mysteries. This transcends the genre spectacularly. By the way, I greatly enjoy the Midsomer Murder series, but they are merely entertaining. The Morse episodes not only entertain, but can considered to be art.
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