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John Thaw as Detective Chief Inspector Morse

Endeavour Morse is a fictional character appearing in novels written by Colin Dexter. The books were later adapted into the ITV television series Inspector Morse (1987-2000), starring John Thaw as the title character, with Kevin Whately as Detective Sergeant Robbie Lewis. Shaun Evans plays a younger Morse in the prequel series Endeavour (2012-present).


He is a DCI at Thames Valley Police. He went to Oxford University, but dropped out before he had finished his degree, and joined the Police Force while trying to work out what he wanted from life.


Morse was named Endeavour by his mother who was a devout Quaker.

His parents divorced when he was 12, and he lived with his mother until her death when he was 15. After that he was sent to live with his father.

His father was a taxi driver by trade. Morse is noted for getting on badly with his step-mother, Gwen, claiming to have read poetry to her to annoy her, even so he has a good relationship with his half-sister Joyce.

Young Life

A new ITV drama is to be released either later in 2012, or early in 2013 about Morse's younger policing days, he is portrayed by Shaun Evans.

Shaun Evans as Detective Sergeant Morse

There is a younger and more vulnerable side to Morse in Endeavour. So far only the Pilot has been released, in which he is only a DC, but is said to sit his Sergeant's exam at the end of the episode.

Like his older self he is easily led by women, falling in love with an Opera singer that he idolises, she is eventually revealed to be the murderer.

It is hinted that DCI Fred Thursday becomes his commanding officer after he solves the case in the Pilot.

Contrary to his later habits, the young Morse does not drink, until he is forced to have one by DCI Thursday after he faints in the pathologist lab after seeing a dead body.

In Inspector Morse

Morse is a DCI with his own Sergeant, Lewis.

He still isn't fond of dead bodies and often sends Lewis down to see them.

He enjoys crosswords. He habitually showed empathy towards women, once opining that the female sex is not naturally prone to crime, being caring and non-violent. He was also never shy of showing his liking for attractive women, and often had dates with those involved in cases.

Morse is an extremely intelligent individual. He dislikes spelling errors and grammatical mistakes, demonstrated by the fact that in every personal or private document written to him he manages to point out at least one spelling mistake. He claims his approach to crime-solving is deductive and one of his key tenets is that "there is a 50 per cent chance that the last person to see the victim alive was the murderer". In reality, it is the pathologists who deduce; Morse uses immense intuition and his fantastic memory to get to the killer.

He is shown to have a fondness for his young, second pathologist Dr Russel, but she leaves the cast after a traumatic case to be replaced by Dr Laura Hobson.

Morse enjoys drinking beer, and often stops for one in the middle of cases, leaving his Sergeant with an orange juice in case they need to drive anywhere.

Morse serves in the Police force until he dies in the final episode of the series.

His red Jaguar is considered Morse's trademark by many people that watched the series.