Is there any mileage left in that classic Jag or is Endeavour just methadone for Morse fans? Last night, we had the latest entry in the ever-ramifying world of Colin Dexter’s creation with an atmospheric origin story that found time for ale, cars, poetry, crosswords and opera. But just because Russell Lewis’s screenplay evoked past glories doesn’t necessarily mean that Endeavour deserves a future.
There will be some who say that this was nothing more than a tick-box exercise, a big nostalgia kick with an intellectual sheen. Yet, for me, Morse remains a fascinating character and there was much to enjoy in seeing how his outsider status in both the police service and academia affected his early career.
However, if Endeavour is to go to a full series it does need to slip the shackles of Inspector Morse. We’ve seen him drink his first pint and well up at the sound of Puccini, but now it’s time for Young Morse to create his own mythology. If this can be achieved, then it’ll be a pleasure to accompany actor Shaun Evans on his journey to become John Thaw.
But, enough from me. How about you? Was this a spin-off too far or were you glad to be back among Oxford’s dreaming spires?