"Foyle's War" The Russian House (TV Episode 2010) Poster

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A rather good episode, actually
Warning: Spoilers
Personally, I felt this was an excellent beginning to the series. The murderer wasn't immediately obvious, there was danger, suspense, Russian accents and a conspiracy that went right to the top. What more could you want?

The good thing was,the episode was far from black and white. The Russians in danger were no saints- they had fought for the Germans- and yet we were encouraged to feel for them. And the villain, while organising the shooting of Foyle and Sam and sending people back to Russia to be horrifically executed, after all only wanted the exchange of British people held by Stalin, and was in fact an old acquaintance of Mr Foyle.

Comment on anachronisms, as pedantic reviewers are wont to do, is unfair and irrelevant. The series has to be understood by contemporary viewers, and if we never got anything wrong, we'd never write anything. What is far more important is the writing, which was, on the whole, good.

Foyle's war is as good as ever. May there be many more series.
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War is over but there's still crime to solve.
PHASEDK12 April 2010
Warning: Spoilers
After the end of WW2, Foyle is sent back to his 'old job' as there 'is no one else'.. to find his enquiries cross those of the local Police after the murder of Sams employer, a complete coincidence. Straight away the local 'plod' clash with him, his ex sergeant sees Foyle as competition when all Foyle wants to do is get the job done and.. leave again. I LOVED the London scenes with the war damage, and wondered where it was shot, how it was done. Too soon for such info apparently. This IS a new season just aired in April 2010.. the new series was OK'd after the re run of series 6 was a success in 2008, as it should be for such a well made programme. Michael Kitchen HAD said no more, but was obviously persuaded back.. good. First ep was full of action and surprises..red herrings, etc. Well worth the watch.
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Roots of the Cold War
Hitchcoc21 September 2016
We are now in the aftermath of the war. The U.S. Is still dealing with Japan, but they play no role in this series. Stalin is out there. He was part of the allies, though as dangerous as Hitler. Russian soldiers who fought for Germany are being rounded up to be sent back. The problem is they will be executed upon their return. A pair of them escape from a truck and that starts things rolling. For some reason, a couple of nobodies become the target of an intensive search. Why are they so important? Of course, as Foyle finds out, there are many layers to things going on. These young men are caught in the middle of a situation they can't control. An artist is murdered. He has sympathies for one of the young Russians. There is also an election where the Labor Party is trying to get a foothold on the country. Intriguing episode.
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Historians work on script
ludebf2 May 2010
Warning: Spoilers
To Pawebster: all scripts are reviewed by historians. Horowitz explains in an interview how he had to re-write scripts after the historians had looked at it and made changes. So I have no idea where you are getting your information. Also, the episodes are based on real stories that happened to a policeman in a town in southern England during the war. Horowitz said when he finished "All Clear" he was sad to see it end b/c he still had so many ideas and every time they read the records they had, he found more material.

What I want to know is what happens to Andrew? I missed the first few minutes and don't know if he was mentioned.
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The aftermath of war
TheLittleSongbird5 November 2017
Loved 'Foyle's War' and was immediately hooked when first getting into it. Love it even more now, on re-watches things that didn't quite make sense at first are clearer and things that were not noticed or appreciated before are and much admired. Everything that came over as brilliant on first viewings still are brilliant on re-watches.

Although a fine episode as one would expect from 'Foyle's War', "The Russian House" is not quite up there with the series' best to me. A little more thought agreed could have been put into the tension between Foyle and Milner, that was not comfortable to watch and didn't seem in character. There is a huge amount to admire about "The Russian House" otherwise. Like with many 'Foyle's War' episodes, on re-watch there was much more appreciation had for how well established the character development, tone and themes are and things that didn't quite connect entirely at first made more sense on re-watches.

Have always admired the visual detail that went into 'Foyle's War' and how high quality the production values are, with beautiful costumes, the evocative way the characters are made up, the look of the houses and cars, pretty locations and authentic-looking scenery. The music is in keeping with the mood and doesn't overpower the drama while still making an impact.

Writing is intelligent, sophisticated and thought-provoking, establishing Foyle's personality with so much depth already and providing some tense and heart-tugging moments. The story is complicated, with a lot of strands that requires full attention, but clever and from start to finish intriguing. It paces itself deliberately but with so much going on it's never once dull and the twists and turns that slowly unfold keep coming. All the conflicts, social/ethical themes and how the period is portrayed are handled beautifully and tastefully, as is the aftermath of the war and British government.

One thing that wasn't picked up by me but now is and admired hugely is the tackling of what was seen as truths but some really misconceptions and seeing British during the war in a new light. This was a bold move and dealt with a lot of honesty and tact. The background information is so well researched and is every bit as interesting as the mystery itself. The character tensions were also handled very well and added a lot of intrigue.

Michael Kitchen is truly superb as Foyle, subtle, intensely determined, commanding and above all human. One of the most interesting television detectives there's ever been and Kitchen has rarely been better. Honeysuckle Weeks is charming and loyal, with some nice touches of subtle humour as ever, and Anthony Howell is wonderful.

Christopher Good and Tim Piggott-Smith (rest in peace) are particularly good of the excellent supporting cast.

In conclusion, fine episode. 9/10 Bethany Cox
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War wearies everyone, including the writers
Laight9 January 2012
Warning: Spoilers
An odd episode. Much about it is very well done--the intrigue between the British government and Stalin is particularly fascinating. And as always, the sense of the era is wonderfully evoked, through art direction, good acting, and crisp direction. Kitchen, Weeks, et al are always in top form. The problem with this episode is twofold. The first: there is no real mystery; the series is edging more towards Le Carre but doesn't quite get there--the plot is weak. The other problem is that the new and very uncomfortable tension between Foyle and Milner is foolish and poorly portrayed. Foyle has journeyed from being an ethical iconoclast to being a rather nasty piece of work. The series, one of very best of all the British mysteries, should have ended with the war. The last episode of the previous year was remarkably good, and tied up all loose ends. This episode has unloosened the knots.
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Anachronisms spoil the peace
jamesmoule13 May 2010
Mr. Foyle has returned in Series 7, now able to drive. How lucky he is to have a shiny new Rover to drive! Even luckier as it is a 1948 or '49 Rover P3 75 Sports Saloon and the episode is set in 1945! Maybe police in 1945 were entitled to pre-production prototypes. I enjoyed the scenes of bomb sites in London and look forward to the rest of the series, hoping that the historians who vet the scripts might cast their eye over the props department. I also wonder how the "old gang" of Foyle, Sam and Milner can be worked into later episodes. Will Foyle get some new staff? As he has given his boss just 4 weeks before he intends to retire, Foyle is not counting on a long series.
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ITV, please scrap this series now
pawebster14 April 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Oh dear. Why didn't they stop when they were winning? Horowitz has clearly run out of ideas and is now working on a threadbare kind of autopilot.

Supposedly the War is over. Except it isn't. The war against Japan is still going on. No parliamentary candidate of the time would start a speech claiming that it was over, when some of his listeners still had family members in danger. This is just one example of the sloppiness of this episode. I might also mention the bananas, which have miraculously been imported. Wow, didn't trade in luxury fruits recover quickly! The plot is built on ridiculous coincidences. Foyle and his two old sidekicks accidentally all meet up, all involved in the same case. Yeah, right.

There are also cardboard cutout villains that would be fine in a children's drama. We even have the old cliché of the gunman who himself gets shot down at the precise second when he is about to kill our hero.

To add to the misery, Sam meets a dippy, drippy young man as her new love interest.

I could go on with the anachronisms of speech, such as "an establishment figure", which involves a meaning of "establishment" not coined until 1955.

Someone, please, put this once fine series out of its misery!
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