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Foyle's War

Season 1 Episode 1

The German Woman

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Oct 27, 2002 on ITV
out of 10
User Rating
36 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Foyle applies to his superintendent for permission to join the army, but has his request turned down. Meanwhile, enemy aliens are being treated very differently - the Kramers, an anti-Nazi couple, are interned and badly treated, to the point that Mrs Kramer dies; however, Greta Beaumont, a German army officer's sister married to an influential local magistrate at Lower Fenton, is exempted and remains with her husband... Then, after a German bomb hits the pub in her village, Greta is viciously decapitated and Michael Turner is suspected of the murder. But Foyle finds there is more to the Beaumont family than meets the eye, and he finds corruption in his own police force.moreless

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  • The introduction

    I watched Foyle's War on PBS and was anxious to see the show from the very beginning.

    The pilot episode introduces all the main characters. Michael Kitchen stars as Christopher Foyle, the Detective Chief Superintendent of the town of Hastings in the south coast of England. Foyle was a veteran of WWI and was keen on rejoining Armed Forces as WWII loomed in the future. His superiors felt that he needed to remain behind, keeping the home front safe.

    It turns out that Foyle never learned how to drive. He was assigned a driver, a young Army woman named Sam Stewart.

    A former sergeant, Paul Milner, lost the lower half of his leg and was hospitalized in or near Hastings. Milner was a survivor of the Norway campaign. Christopher convinces Paul that his services were needed, since Foyle was very shorthanded.

    What I loved about this series is the historical aspects of each episode. In The German Woman, the rich and privileged being treated better than average citizens. The horrors of failed operation in Trondheim Norway were revealed. Finally, there was the subject of what happened to foreign residents living in England during wartime. Add several murders with a surprise ending that will keep you wondering until the very end.

    Foyle's War is a masterful period piece that is cleverly written and another fine example of British television.moreless
  • "My name is Foyle. I'm a policeman."

    In this episode, Detective Chief Superintendant Foyle gets rejected (again) for military service, comes to know his new eager female driver, attempts to recruit an injured veteran to the force and must deal with his son's deployment in the RAF. Oh, and there's a pair of murders to solve.

    With so much to establish in this pilot, it's a pleasant surprise that the mystery component of the story does not get short shift. The basic plot elements are not all that new - the whole thing appears on the surface to be an English countryside family murder. But the genius of this script (and of the entire show) is to bring the looming backdrop of WWII into the story. Suddenly, an entire town has a motive to kill the victim, and Foyle must not only solve the case but overcome the increasing public indifference towards the death of the "German woman."

    The episode also touches on sensitive and relevant issues for today's audience (prejudice, the merits of interning "dangerous" foreigners) without getting too preachy. It's cliche to say a TV show or movie "makes you think," but "Foyle's War" does offer a bit more depth than others in its genre.

    With the length of its episodes compared to most series, "Foyle's War" at times feels more like a series of (albeit very high quality) B-movie mysteries, like the "Charlie Chan" and Rathbone Sherlock Holmes series from the 1940s. "The German Woman" would make a great stand-alone story, and it's also a great pilot for the series.moreless
  • Foyle's War! Not to be missed!

    A fantastic introduction to an amazing character. I speak of course of Detective Inspector Christopher Foyle!

    “Foyle’s War” deals with investigations of murders and various other times in England during WW2.

    Foyle is played superbly by Michael Kitchen. Foyle is a man of few words, with strict morals and a great sense of justice.

    In this first episode, a German woman living in England is murdered. While everybody dismisses it as just “another German dying” while calling her “the enemy” , Foyle seeks the truth at any cost because in his mind she was not German, she was a human being and deserved justice.

    It’s also here that his team is built. Honeysuckle Weeks is absolutely fantastic as Sam Stewart, his driver and we’re also introduced to Anthony Howell as Sergeant Paul Milner, Foyle’s assistant. All of them have great chemistry together as will be seen in future episodes.

    “Foyle’s War” is set in the English countryside. It has the perfect atmosphere for a British whodunit and a really good cast. It’s a bit slow but the writing is top notch with complex characters and well planned plots.

    I highly recommend it to the fans of the genre. You wont be disappointed.moreless
Edward Fox

Edward Fox

Asst. Commissioner Summers

Guest Star

Robert Hardy

Robert Hardy

Henry Beaumont

Guest Star

David Horovitch

David Horovitch

Thomas Kramer

Guest Star

Anthony Howell

Anthony Howell

Paul Milner

Recurring Role

Julian Ovenden

Julian Ovenden

Andrew Foyle

Recurring Role

Honeysuckle Weeks

Honeysuckle Weeks

Samantha Stewart

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • The ship in the opening scene is a King George V class battleship; the first of which (King George V) was not completed until 12 November, 1940, six months after the episode occurs.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Sam Stewart: So, what are you investigating? I hope it's something juicy, like a spy ring or a grizzly murder.

    • Andrew Foyle [ of a fish his father has caught ]: What is it, dad? A starter?
      Christopher Foyle: You are very difficult to please, Andrew. It's a main course. Perfect.

    • Asst. Commissioner Summers: Has it crossed your mind that we are training half the country how to kill?

    • Christopher Foyle: I'm a policeman, I'm here to do a job. It's simple as that. If I start bending the rules, I might as well pack it in!

    • Andrew Foyle: I can't see the attraction of standing ankle deep in mud, trying to catch a fish too stupid to come any where near us.
      Christopher Foyle: Don't underestimate the intellegence of the average trout, and besides, they can hear you from forty feet away, so please try and keep quiet!

    • Assistant Commissioner Summers: You do a good job. No telling where you might be once the war is over…
      Christopher Foyle: It will depend on who wins I suppose…

    • Sam Stewart: Yes, but she was a German.
      Christopher Foyle: Well, the war doesn't make any difference at all. She was a human being; she was murdered. Murder is murder. You stop believing that and we might as well not be fighting the war, because you end up like the Nazis.

  • NOTES (0)