List of Inspector Morse episodes

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This is a list of episodes of the British television crime drama Inspector Morse, starring John Thaw and Kevin Whately, for which eight series were broadcast between 1987 and 2000, totalling thirty-three episodes. Although the last five episodes were each broadcast a year apart (two years before the final episode), when released on DVD, they were billed as Series Eight.

Series 1 (1987)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "The Dead of Jericho" Anthony Minghella Alastair Reid TBA 6 January 1987 (1987-01-06)
Anne Stavely, a friend of Morse's, ostensibly commits suicide at her home in Jericho, though Morse is unconvinced. Morse works with Sergeant Lewis for the first time.
2 "The Silent World of Nicholas Quinn" Julian Mitchell Brian Parker TBA 13 January 1987 (1987-01-13)
The murder of a deaf university entrance examiner leads Morse and Lewis into a possible college cheating scandal.
3 "Service of All the Dead" Julian Mitchell Peter Hammond TBA 20 January 1987 (1987-01-20)
A church warden is found with a knife in his chest; and more bodies start to pile up as Morse and Lewis try to catch a dangerous psychopath.

Series 2 (1987–8)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "The Wolvercote Tongue" Julian Mitchell Alastair Reid TBA 25 December 1987 (1987-12-25)
An American tourist is found dead in a hotel room at the Randolph Hotel, apparently from a heart attack. Morse suspects foul play, as a unique Anglo-Saxon artefact belonging to the victim has gone missing.
2 "Last Seen Wearing" Thomas Ellice Edward Bennett TBA 8 March 1988 (1988-03-08)
A schoolgirl has been missing for six months and Morse is convinced she is dead. However he and Lewis discover some disturbing facts about one of the schools she attended. But before he can solve the mystery, another murder happens.
3 "The Settling of the Sun" Charles Wood Peter Hammond TBA 15 March 1988 (1988-03-15)
Morse is called on to solve the murder of a Japanese student, one of a group of foreign students with whom he had attended dinner.
4 "Last Bus to Woodstock" Michael Wilcox Peter Duffell TBA 22 March 1988 (1988-03-22)
Morse investigates the murder of an 18-year-old woman found dead in a pub car park.

Series 3 (1989)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "Ghost in the Machine" Julian Mitchell Herbert Wise TBA 4 January 1989 (1989-01-04)
Valuable paintings are stolen from a stately home, Hanbury House, and Sir Julius Hanbury, the owner, is missing. After Morse finds Sir Julius's body in his private chapel, he and Lewis are involved in a near car accident that results in a fatality. Lewis notices the brake line is cut and the driver of the car has a note on him in response to a blackmail threat.
2 "The Last Enemy" Peter Buckman James Scott TBA 11 January 1989 (1989-01-11)
The torso of a man is found floating in a canal at Thrupp. An old university friend of Morse's, and now the Master of the Oxford college Beaumont, Sir Alexander Reece, asks Morse to investigate the disappearance of the Deputy Master.
3 "Deceived by Flight" Anthony Minghella Anthony Simmons TBA 18 January 1989 (1989-01-18)
An old college roommate of Morse's, Anthony Donn, comes to Oxford for a cricket match and calls Morse after twenty years and wants to get together and talk. Morse soon gets distracted by a case where three people are killed in a hate crime in the fire bombing of a very liberal bookstore. Donn, who obviously had something on his mind to talk about with Morse, then turns up dead in his college lodging. Lewis replaces Donn on the cricket team, the Clarets, to go undercover. A cricket match between the Clarets and the Hearties, organized by another former college companion of Morse's, Roly Marshall, is disrupted when Peter Foster is found murdered in the changing rooms, stabbed in the chest with a pair of scissors.
4 "The Secret of Bay 5B" Alma Cullen Jim Goddard TBA 25 January 1989 (1989-01-25)
A murder at a multi-storey car park uncovers a crime of passion involving a jealous husband, his wife, and her lover.

Series 4 (1990)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "The Infernal Serpent" Alma Cullen John Madden TBA 3 January 1990 (1990-01-03)
The death of a senior fellow outside his Oxford college of Beaufort, during an apparent mugging, while on the way to give a controversial speech, leads Morse to suspect the prominent environmentalist was killed because of his beliefs. The death appears to have been a heart attack and Morse is just about to give up on the case, which is what his superior wants him to do, but feels that Master Matthew Copley-Barnes and his family, including a well known reporter, Sylvie Maxton who lived with the family when she was young, are not telling him everything about some mysterious packages the Master is receiving.
2 "The Sins of the Fathers" Jeremy Burnham Peter Hammond TBA 10 January 1990 (1990-01-10)
Morse and Lewis investigate whether two murders at a family brewery are linked to a proposed takeover bid.
3 "Driven to Distraction" Anthony Minghella Sandy Johnson TBA 17 January 1990 (1990-01-17)
A serial killer has brutally murdered two women separately in Oxford. The victims appear to have nothing in common. Strange introduces Detective Sergeant Maitland, a female specialist in crimes against women. Morse is patronizing and condescending towards Maitland, and is sceptical about her techniques. Lewis finds a tentative link between the victims through police computer database searches: all had bought a car from the same dealer. Morse visits Jeremy Boynton, the owner of the car dealership, and decides, without anything other than circumstantial evidence and a dislike of Boynton, that he is guilty. In an attempt to rile Boynton, Morse starts a course of refresher driving lessons at the nearby driving school, parking his Jaguar outside Boynton's garage each time he has a lesson. Morse becomes aware that Boynton was having an affair with the last victim and is blackmailing a female friend of hers by threatening to inform the police about her cannabis habit. Morse arrests Boynton and has his car forensically dismantled. However, Boynton has an alibi and Morse has little evidence. Strange orders Morse to release Boynton immediately and to put his car back together. Morse protests but has to comply with Strange's order. The boyfriend of the last victim becomes aware of Boynton's arrest and release and confronts him at the garage. He notices a fuel tanker delivery taking place and tries to set fire to the garage. Boynton attempts to stop him but is doused in petrol and knocked unconscious. Morse and Maitland go back to Boynton's garage without a warrant and start working through company files and computer records. Lewis objects to the illegality of this and angrily leaves. During the searches, which last all night, another possible victim from several years earlier is identified. However, she survived her attack and is still alive. While Morse attempts to contact her, and further investigates the man who confessed to her assault, Strange tells Morse he's going to take him off the case. Meanwhile, a third woman is murdered. Morse is perplexed by the latest murder, as the victim had no apparent link with Boynton's car dealership. Further, Boynton is ruled out as the killer, as he is still recovering in hospital when the third murder occurs. The focus of the investigation then suddenly shifts when it becomes clear that the victims all had links to the nearby driving school.
4 "Masonic Mysteries" Julian Mitchell Danny Boyle TBA 24 January 1990 (1990-01-24)
Morse becomes the prime suspect when a friend is murdered at a dress rehearsal of Mozart's The Magic Flute, and he is found holding her with a knife in his hand. It soon becomes apparent that one of his old adversaries, Hugo De Vries, is trying to implicate him.

Series 5 (1991)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "Second Time Around" Daniel Boyle Adrian Shergold TBA 20 February 1991 (1991-02-20)
A highly thought-of and distinguished senior officer, Charlie Hillian, has just retired and is writing a book about his biggest cases. During the night after he received an OBE, Hillian is killed in a struggle in his rural Oxfordshire home. The notes for one chapter of his forthcoming book are missing, the only case in the book which Hillian and his then DS, Patrick Dawson, is unsolved. That case involved the murder of an eight-year-old girl, Mary Lapsley, and it appears that someone wants that chapter to be unpublished.
2 "Fat Chance" Alma Cullen Roy Battersby TBA 27 February 1991 (1991-02-27)
The death of a promising feminist cleric highlights a furious Ecclesiastical battle of the sexes that Morse discovers is somehow connected with a weight-loss medication.
3 "Who Killed Harry Field?" Geoffrey Case Colin Gregg TBA 13 March 1991 (1991-03-13)
Local artist, restorer and bon viveur Harry Field is murdered but who would want to kill a mediocrity? Lewis considers applying for a promotion to Inspector, to the obvious dismay of Morse.
4 "Greeks Bearing Gifts" Peter Nichols Adrian Shergold TBA 20 March 1991 (1991-03-20)
A Greek restaurateur is murdered; his sister, accompanied by her baby, comes to Oxford for the funeral. The sister vanishes, and her baby is then kidnapped. Somehow, both are connected with a reconstructed Hellenic trireme.[nb 1]
5 "Promised Land" Julian Mitchell John Madden TBA 27 March 1991 (1991-03-27)
Morse and Lewis travel to Australia to re-interview a man who has become a protected witness after he testified against a mobster. Questions about the validity of the case arose in England, and now the informant may be in danger.

Series 6 (1992)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "Dead on Time" Daniel Boyle John Madden TBA 26 February 1992 (1992-02-26)
When Henry Fallon, an Oxford don, commits suicide, Morse discovers he has a painful link with the man's widow, Susan.
2 "Happy Families" Daniel Boyle Adrian Shergold TBA 11 March 1992 (1992-03-11)
Morse becomes the victim of a hate campaign by the press as he investigates the death of a cruel, boorish industrialist.
3 "The Death of the Self" Alma Cullen Colin Gregg TBA 25 March 1992 (1992-03-25)
Morse and Lewis investigate the apparently accidental death of a wealthy tourist in Italy and uncover an antiquities smuggling racket.
4 "Absolute Conviction" John Brown Antonia Bird TBA 8 April 1992 (1992-04-08)
Lawrence Cryer, convicted of real estate fraud, is found dead in a cell at the minimum security prison, Farnleigh. Morse, Lewis and D.S. Cheetham question various inmates, including Cryer's former partners, Bailey and Thornton, who are also incarcerated at Farnleigh and various victims of the fraud. The Farnleigh governor, Hillary Stevens, is also questioned. An inmate, Charlie Bennett, incarcerated for murdering his wife, is suspected of being the perpetrator.
5 "Cherubim and Seraphim" Julian Mitchell Danny Boyle TBA 15 April 1992 (1992-04-15)
A teenager, Marilyn Garrett, the daughter of Morse's half-sister Joyce is found dead, having taken an overdose. Morse takes leave to investigate the death, searching for a reason for Marilyn's suicide. Morse's stepmother Gwen – the mother of Joyce – is being treated in a nursing home where a Doctor Desmond Collier, a pioneering chemist who has invented a new anti-aging drug, 'Seraphics', which work by expanding the blood vessels which lead to the brain, allowing blood to move more freely. Meanwhile, a second teenager, Jacko Lever, is reported missing. As Morse is on holiday, Lewis is placed with another Inspector, the more methodical and soon to retire DCI Holroyd. Lewis eventually finds Jacko dead in a railway tunnel as another suspect suicide. Both Marilyn and Jacko are found to have taken the same pill before their death, although it is not immediately recognizable to the pathologist. Later, a friend of Marilyn's, Vicky Wilson, goes missing, which adds a degree of urgency to the investigation. Morse and Lewis learn more about rave culture from a younger drugs squad officer and they manage to discover a periodical unofficial 'rave' event called CHERUB which Marilyn, Vicky and Jacko have been attending. Morse and Lewis observe a concealed rave at a leased stately home. They discover a new experimental drug is being used that is currently in testing, and that there is some controversy about the long-term effects on young people. The drug dealer involved is observed by Morse and Lewis, but tragedy strikes when he tries to make good his escape.

Series 7 (1993)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "Deadly Slumber" Daniel Boyle Stuart Orme TBA 6 January 1993 (1993-01-06)
Matthew Brewster, owner of a private clinic, is found dead in his garage with the car engine running. The pathologist discovers he was murdered. Morse and Lewis question the dead man's wife and son. They uncover that Michael Steppings threatened the victim; Steppings' daughter was declared brain dead while undergoing simple surgery at the clinic. Steppings is interrogated for the murder, and is released when Morse substantiates his alibi. Meanwhile, Lewis discovers Wendy Hazlitt, a nurse at the clinic, had an affair with Matthew Brewster. He also uncovers a set of anonymous threatening letters, using words clipped from newspapers and magazines, which have been sent to the victim. Forensic examinations reveal that one of the letters has been tampered with, and that an extra death-threat has been added, using glue different from that used on the other letter - and on all the other letters. Morse's investigation leads to the victim's son and his belief that thr son was blackmailing the victim. Morse accompanies Steppings to visit his comatose daughter in hospital, where she is being kept on life-support. He discovers that Steppings has surrounded her hospital bed with family photographs and her favourite toys. Later, whilst is in custody being questioned, Steppings asks Morse to keep vigil on his daughter, as he has never missed a day of seeing her since the injury. Feeling that Steppings may not be the murderer, and liking the man's apparent humanity, Morse decides to honour Steppings' request. Later, when Steppings is able to resume visiting his daughter, he finds fresh flowers by her bedside - which leads Morse to realise that everything hinges on the cruel injury caused to Steppings' daughter, and those responsible for this injury.
2 "The Day of the Devil" Daniel Boyle Stephen Whittaker TBA 13 January 1993 (1993-01-13)
John Peter Barrie, a convicted rapist and devil worshipper, escapes from a prison infirmary by eluding the authorities with several disguises. Morse and Lewis begin a manhunt in an attempt to track him down. They question his prison therapist, Doctor Esther Martin, and Humphrey Appleton, a priest and an expert in the occult, who provides them with information on Barrie's stated of mind. Meanwhile, Barrie abducts Holly Trevors, wife of Steven Trevors, an odd-job man working for Oxford college, but releases her. Barrie then demands to meet with Dr. Martin on Lammas day, a pagan day of ritual fire. Lewis visits an Occult bookshop, where he finds that one of their regular customers is a colleague of Steven Trevors. Morse begins to suspect that someone is helping Barrie, after witness statements reveal that his disguises involve professional theatrical make-up. Meanwhile, Steven Trevors' fingerprints are discovered, previously unidentified, on the police data base from an earlier unsolved crime, which is linked to Barrie. On Lammas Day, a group of devil-worshippers are celebrating a Black Mass, when they are suddenly surrounded by a ring of fire, and Steven Trevors is burned alive. The mystery deepens when Barrie's much earlier connection to his prison therapist is revealed.
3 "Twilight of the Gods" Julian Mitchell Herbert Wise TBA 20 January 1993 (1993-01-20)
Neville Grimshaw, an investigative journalist, is found shot dead. Opera diva Gwladys Probert, is shot by a sniper during an academic procession which is witnessed by Morse and Lewis. Morse and Lewis discover that Grimshaw was investigating Andrew Baydon, a prospective major benefactor of the college. An investigation finds that the two shootings are related. Baydon, a survivor of a Nazi concentration camp, is revealed as a collaborator and guard, and Morse suspects that he ordered the killing of Grimshaw, which leads him to realise that Victor Ignotas, a survivor of the same camp, may have unintentionally shot Probert whilst attempting to kill Baydon.

Series 8 (1995-2000)

Episode Title Written by Directed by Viewers
Original airdate
1 "The Way Through the Woods" Russell Lewis John Madden TBA 29 November 1995 (1995-11-29)
Stephen Parnell, who confessed to murdering five people, is killed in prison, but in his dying declaration, he claims that he did not kill the last victim, Karen Anderson. Morse discovers that the murders were first investigated by DCI Martin Johnson and Lewis the previous summer, but that Karen Anderson's body has never been found. Morse becomes convinced that Johnson overlooked key evidence, and that Karen Anderson's body has been buried in Wytham Woods, and not in Blenheim Lake, as Parnell had stated in his confession. Morse questions George Daley, a witness who found Anderson's overnight bag a week after she disappeared, and turned it over to the police. The next day, Daley is found shot to death in one of the gardens at Blenheim Palace, and Morse is put in charge because Strange feels that Johnson may have cut corners in the investigation. Morse and Lewis then interview Dr. Alan Hardinge, the bursar of Lonsdale College; Dave Michaels, the groundskeeper of Wytham Woods; and Margaret and Philip Daley, the wife and son of George Daley. When they question Mrs. Daley and her son, they touch upon some photos found on Karen Anderson's camera. Lewis identifies the location in one of the photos as Park Town, which leads them to Alisdair McBryde, a local resident. McBryde identifies Dr. James Myton, a South African doctor, who seems to have fled the country mid-way through his rental of a local flat and appears in two of the photos. Morse and Lewis discover that McBryde and Myton had encouraged Karen Anderson to take nude photographs for them on the day before she went missing. A search of Myton's flat leads Morse to convince Strange to let him search Wytham Woods. When the search turns up some skeletal remains, Morse is convinced that Karen Anderson has been found.
2 "The Daughters of Cain" Julian Mitchell Herbert Wise TBA 27 November 1996 (1996-11-27)
Dr. Felix McClure, a retired university don, is found stabbed to death in his apartment. The phone number of "Kay" is found in McClure's notes. Morse and Lewis begin investigating McClure's college associates and students. These include Ted Brooks, his former scout, who was sacked by McClure for apparent drug dealing; Matthew Rodway, a student who died in questionable circumstances; and Ashley Davies, another student and friend of Rodway, who trains racehorses at Seven Barrows near Lambourn, and was rusticated by McClure. They discover that Ted Brooks has physically and emotionally abused his wife, Brenda, for years. Brenda's daughter, Kay, who is a high-class escort and is engaged to Ashley, has also been abused by her stepfather, Ted, when she lived at home. Morse interviews Kay about her relationship with Felix and Ted. Morse also questions Julia Stevens, a school teacher and very close friend of Brenda, who is dying of a brain tumor. Morse suspects Ted Brooks killed McClure because McClure had discovered Ted was selling drugs to the students again. Ted disappears from his house and his body is found in a nearby river. Brenda Brooks confesses to destroying evidence that incriminates her husband in the death of McClure. Morse and Lewis disagree on whether to search for a possible accomplice, who they suspect must have helped Brenda dispose of the evidence. Morse is convinced Kay, Julia and Brenda were involved in Ted's disappearance and murder; there's just one hitch - no evidence to prove his theory.
3 "Death Is Now My Neighbour" Julian Mitchell Charles Beeson TBA 19 November 1997 (1997-11-19)
Rachel James, a physiotherapist, is shot through a window of her own home whilst drawing the blinds one Friday morning. Meanwhile, Dr. Julian Storrs and Denis Cornford are two candidates locked in an intense rivalry for Master of Lonsdale College, to replace Sir Clixby Bream. Morse and Lewis begin the investigation by interviewing her neighbours and the clinic where she worked. Morse soon establishes that Julian Storrs gave Rachel a Valentine's card found in her possession, and was having an affair with her at the time of her death. Morse also learns from Storrs that Denis Cornford and Rachel were once lovers. The following morning, Geoffrey Owens, Rachel's neighbour, is found shot dead in his flat in similar circumstances. Because there is no Number 13, Morse concludes that Rachel James is mistakenly killed and Geoffrey Owens had been the intended victim. Morse also uncovers that Owens supplemented his reporter's income by blackmailing unknown victims. Among Owens's papers, Morse finds a slip of paper in a file with an article he had written about the retirement of Bream. Morse's trawl through the archives leads him onto a case where housewife Alice Martin and her daughter Debra shot Alice's husband Kenneth, a wealthy businessman, and then burned him on his yacht, because he was going to run off with a younger woman. Morse finds out that Alice and Debra changed their names to Angela and Diane Cullingham, to avoid the stain of their past following them - and that Angela Cullingham has since become Angela Storrs.
4 "The Wench Is Dead" Malcolm Bradbury Robert Knights 12.39m[2] 11 November 1998 (1998-11-11)
Morse and Strange attend an exhibit entitled "Criminal Oxford", but during a lecture by Dr. Millicent Van Buren, a visiting professor from Boston University, Morse starts to feel ill, and is later found by Strange collapsed on the lavatory floor. While hospitalised, Morse is diagnosed with a bleeding ulcer, which his doctor ascribes to his excessive consumption of alcohol. To pass the time in his recovery, he reads Van Buren's book on Victorian investigation techniques, which details the 1859 murder of Joanna Franks, whose body was found floating in the Oxford Canal. Rory Oldfield and Alfred Musson, two boatmen on a fly-boat Joanna was traveling on, were convicted of the murder and hanged; another, Walter Towns, received a last-minute commutation to transportation for life. However, Morse comes to believe that the men did not kill Joanna, and were victims of a miscarriage of justice. With the assistance of Adele Cecil and Constable Adrian Kershaw, Morse uncovers several inconsistencies in the trial. For instance, Joanna had accused the boatmen of being rude and drunk, but was later seen drinking and smiling with them. A fourth boatman on the fly-boat, a teenager who was not charged, testified for the prosecution. The size of Joanna's shoes fit improperly with the length of her dress, which had been altered, and her drawers, which had been described as torn or ripped, were actually cut with a knife deliberately. Kershaw investigates the insurance payment to Charles Franks, and discovers that Joanna had insured herself, and that payment of £300 was made in full to Charles Franks. Although Morse is unable to exhume Joanna's body, he travels to Bertraghboy Bay, on the west coast of Ireland, to open the grave of Frank Donavan. When the coffin is opened, there are no human remains. Morse figures out that Donald "Don" Favant, a passerby when the body was found, and Charles Franks, are aliases derived from Frank Donavan. Don Favant is an anagram of FT Donavan.
5 "The Remorseful Day" Stephen Churchett Jack Gold 13.66m[2] 15 November 2000 (2000-11-15)
Yvonne Harrison is found by her husband Frank, having been murdered and left in a sexually compromising position. Morse after no progress is taken off the case after two months, then an anonymous letter suggesting that Harry Repp, who is to be released from prison, may be the perpetrator. Because of Morse's failing health has Lewis assuming a more active role. Paddy Flynn, the cab driver who drove Frank Harrison to his home on the night of the murder, is found dead in a local rubbish dump. Harry Repp is also found dead, in the boot of a stolen car. A local lothario, John Barron, is killed in a fall from a ladder. It is revealed that the three men had been blackmailing whoever killed Yvonne, and it is speculated that Barron killed the other two so that he could keep the blackmail money for himself. Yvonne's son, Simon, is questioned in Barron's death, but then a teenage boy admits to having caused Barron to fall off the ladder by crashing into it with his bicycle. It is revealed that Sandra Harrison has killed her mother in a jealous rage over John Barron. The teenage boy was actually Frank's illegitimate son, Roy, who had lied to the police in order to get Simon off the hook for killing Barron. Just after uncovering the truth, Morse collapses from a heart attack and later dies in hospital.[3]


  1. ^ This episode caused a question to be raised in Parliament by Lord Jenkins of Putney regarding the legality of employing a baby, and how it was induced to cry at the right moment.[1]


  1. ^ ""Inspector Morse" TV Programme". Hansard Lords Sitting, UK Parliament. 25 April 1991. 
  2. ^ a b "Weekly Top 30 programmes". BARB. Retrieved 16 October 2017. 
  3. ^ Leonard, Bill (2004). The Oxford of Inspector Morse. BFS Entertainment & Multimedia Limited. p. 77. ISBN 0-7792-0754-8. 
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