Inspector Morse

Season 6 Episode 2

Happy Families

0
Aired Tuesday 8:00 PM Mar 11, 1992 on ITV
9.2
out of 10
User Rating
17 votes
1

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Episode Summary

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Business tycoon Sir John Balcombe is found murdered at his country house, Balcombe Castle, with no signs of a break-in. As a result, the dead man's wife and sons come under suspicion. Morse finds that the family is strangely untroubled, and several of his prime suspects have flawed characters and dark secrets - and then the Balcombe family suffers another killing.

Meanwhile, Morse has to cope with journalists who try to turn his own personality into a story - and he also suffers from an unhelpful Chief Superintendant, covering for the station's usual boss, who puts pressure on him to crack the case in a hurry.

In the end, though, Morse is vindicated and his various tormentors get their comeuppance.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Solving a mystery and saving his reputation are on Morse's agenda.

    8.2
    "Happy Families" marked my first exposure to Inspector Morse. While the mystery is nothing to write home about (a traditional sordid family drama among the English upper crust), the acting was so strong that it elevated a pretty conventional drama.



    In particular, John Thaw was amazing as Morse. I had heard praises of his portrayal and having seen a sample of it for myself I can understand why he earned such acclaim for the role. Morse is smug, condescending, a real bastard when you think about. Yet Thaw makes him so real and so relatable, we end up rooting for the inspector.



    At times, the mystery takes a backseat to the trials and tribulations Morse goes through with the tabloid press. As Morse faces a killer who continues to claim victims right under the nose of the police, he must also deal with an arrogant reporter who has made it his mission to humiliate Morse off the case. The idea of an intellectual being portrayed as aloof is sadly more and more common, which makes the ending so much more satisfying, as Morse triumphantly declares that he found the solution to the case in a book.



    I can't wait to watch more "Morse" and see more of John Thaw's incredible performance in the title role.moreless
John Thaw

John Thaw

Chief Inspector Morse

Kevin Whately

Kevin Whately

Detective Sergeant Lewis

Charlotte Coleman

Charlotte Coleman

Jessica

Guest Star

Jonathan Coy

Jonathan Coy

Harry Balcombe

Guest Star

Anna Massey

Anna Massey

Lady Emily Balcombe

Guest Star

Elizabeth Kettle

Elizabeth Kettle

WPC

Recurring Role

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