Our fierce winds of late have ripped open the rather flimsy cover of Jackie’s self assembly greenhouse. This morning we went on a search for something more robust, and eventually found Grow-Arcs at Stewarts in Christchurch. Apart from the display model, there was only one in stock, but because they were slightly smaller than the original, we needed two. The staff dismantled the display one. We brought them home, and The Head Gardener assembled them. The now obsolete frame has, of course, been recycled against the front fence.
This afternoon I began reading Ian McEwan’s novel ‘Sweet Tooth’.
This evening we dined on egg, bacon, mushrooms, and baked beans, followed by Jackie’s apple crumble and evap. We both drank sparkling water.
Two nights ago we watched the penultimate episode of Downton Abbey. Having chronicled the saga of an English country house from the outbreak of the First World War to the years before the Second, this really had to come to an end, for the era of such grand households was in its death throes. The producers received much angry criticism for leaving a number of loose ends, in what was advertised as the final episode; clearly to encourage viewings for the Christmas special which we are now told is to come.
The era of my title is, however, not this one. It describes the tenure of the admirable Kevin Whateley first as Sergeant “Robbie” Lewis, in the Inspector Morse series, then as Detective Inspector in the spin off bearing his character’s name.
Wikipedia tells us that ‘Inspector Endeavour Morse is a fictional character in the eponymous series of detective novels by British author Colin Dexter. On television, he appears in the 33-episode 1987–2000 drama series Inspector Morse, in which John Thaw played the character; as well as the 2012 series Endeavour, portrayed by Shaun Evans. Morse originally is described as a senior CID (Criminal Investigation Department) officer with the Thames Valley Police force in Oxford, England. With a Jaguar car (a Lancia in the early novels), a thirst for English real ale and a penchant for music (especially opera and Wagner), poetry, art, classics, classic cars, and cryptic crossword puzzles, Morse presents a likeable persona, despite his sullen temperament.
(John Thaw’s photograph, left, is wrongly captioned as Kavanagh QC, another role he played. It is undoubtedly of Morse, although he didn’t get to smile much.)
‘The same source offers this further information: ‘Lewis is a British television detective drama produced for ITV. A spin-off from Inspector Morse, like that series it is set in Oxford.Kevin Whately reprises his character Robert “Robbie” Lewis, who was Morse’s sergeant in the original series. Lewis has now been promoted to detective inspector and is assisted by DS James Hathaway, portrayed by Laurence Fox, who became promoted to Inspector in the eighth series airing in 2014. The series also stars Clare Holman as forensic pathologist Dr Laura Hobson, and Angela Griffin as DS Lizzie Maddox.’ This précis, corrected further on the Wikipedia page omits ‘Rebecca Front as Chief Superintendent Jean Innocent (2006–2014) — She is the senior officer supervising Lewis and Hathaway. When Lewis returned from his overseas secondment Innocent was not convinced that Lewis would be of value, but he proved himself to her on his first case. Innocent is frequently at odds with Lewis over his investigation style. In Series 9, it is revealed that she has gone to work for Suffolk Constabulary.’
An interesting dynamic was created by dragging Lewis out of retirement to assist his former junior.
On 2 November 2015, ITV announced that the show would end after its ninth series, following the decision made by Kevin Whately and Laurence Fox to retire from “their roles” in the series. In a statement made by Whately, he announced that the show had gone on long enough, with his character having done many stories between Morse and Lewis after he took on the role 30 years ago.’
We watched the final episode this evening. I have been an avid follower from the beginning, and have probably seen every story. Apart from the deceased John Thaw, all the excellent actors named above, none having become typecast, should soon be gracing other roles.