Following on from its triumphant return last week Endeavour was back with a spookier tale slightly removed from its usual subject matter. Still there was murder and mystery a foot this week as the focus of Morse’s interests shifted to a girl’s boarding school in the Oxfordshire countryside.
The story focused on the murder of gentleman at an Oxford museum and the supposed haunting of the Blythe Mount School for Girls through a vicious massacre of children in the late 19th century. The programme had its genuinely tense and haunting moments as the characters debated the question as to whether ghosts really do exist.
Morse’s thinking outside the box once again came under the scrutiny of his superiors who seemed to be looking too much at the obvious for Morse’s liking. Morse’s perseverance held up this time round with his hunches proving him right in the end. It also seems that Morse can’t seem to stay out of physical harm this series with this week’s episode seeing him fall through the ceiling whilst chasing ghosts after being beaten up last week.
Sometimes it’s easy to forget that Endeavour is set in the 1960’s when you really immerse yourself in the story fortunately there are always the little touches that bring you back into the 60’s setting. This week it was the World Cup Final in 1966 and lucky Morse had managed to bag himself England in the office sweepstakes.
One of my favourite moments from this week comes from Abigail Thaw who plays journalist Dorothea Frazil. Abigail Thaw of course is the daughter of the late John Thaw who originally played Morse in the original series run. The series has seen Evans and Thaw share some touching moments; in the pilot episode Thaw’s character had a beautiful moment with Evan’s Morse “haven’t we met before?… perhaps in another life?” This week’s episode was no exception with Frazil’s tentative “Morse” reminding us how strange it must be for Thaw to act next to a character that her father once embodied.
Morse’s personal life was once again in the spotlight this week as his relationships with Joan Thursday (D. I. Thursday’s daughter) and Monica (his neighbour) were put to the test. Leaving an indecisive Morse red-faced once again; a small nod to Morse’s love problems later in life.
One ghost that seemed to haunt Morse was one of the final revelations of the story. The mystery of “Bloody Charlotte”, the sister of the murdered children from the 1800’s was shown to be nothing more than a victim of her time and circumstances as it was revealed poignantly that she had Down’s Syndrome and had suffered the horrible fate of being locked away in a sanatorium for the rest of her life by her father. A reminder perhaps of how far we have come from the perceptions of disability we had in the past. All in all Endeavour continues to raise the bar of Sunday night television this week; roll on the next case for our favourite Oxford detective.