'Masterpiece: Endeavour' Is Back for a 'Darker' Season 5 — Plus, 3 More Unconventional Detectives

Endeavour -Shaun Evans , Roger Allam - Endeavour, Season 5 MASTERPIECE Mystery! Sundays, June 24–July 29, 2018 at 9pm ET on PBS Shown from left to right: Shaun Evans as Endeavour Morse and Roger Allam as Fred Thursday.
Coutresy of ITV and MASTERPIECE

Brilliant Oxford police detective, opera lover and crossword puzzle whiz Endeavour Morse (Shaun Evans) and his down-to-earth boss Fred Thursday (Roger Allam) are back on the case for Season 5 of Endeavour on PBS’s Masterpiece.

The ’60s-era prequel to the long-running Inspector Morse expands to six episodes from the usual four as the pair deal with a gang turf war, a poisoning linked to a film shoot and a disappearance that sends Morse undercover to teach a boarding school’s twisted students. "This season is darker," says executive producer Damien Timmer. "Morse almost gets blown up, various people try to shoot him and he’s caught in a fire."

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Along with danger, the series offers up its usual dry wit and observation of the social hierarchy in Oxford and at Cowley Police Station. There, Morse — a lone wolf who doesn’t fit in with his colleagues — finds himself in the unwanted role of mentor to a young detective, George Fancy (Lewis Peek). "He’s not necessarily very successful," hints Timmer.

As always, the relationship between Endeavour and Thursday takes center stage. "We’re finding new things for them to argue about," Timmer says. "And new ways for them to need each other." This season, they share each other’s pain over Thursday’s daughter, Joan (Sara Vickers), the object of Endeavour’s affection, who left Oxford with no intention of returning. "She continues to be a big deal for Endeavour," Timmer says. "He has romantic adventures with women, but Joan is the shadow over everything."

3 More Unconventional Detectives

Harry Bosch, Bosch (Amazon Prime Video)
The LAPD detective (Titus Welliver) — who was an abused foster child — goes rogue to get justice for the city’s most vulnerable victims. Bosch has challenged superiors, exposed corrupt cops and staged solo rescues.

Bosch - Titus Welliver

Molly Solverson, Fargo (Hulu)
Nevertheless, she persisted. On Season 1 of the FX anthology, the old boys’ network at a small-town police department discourages Deputy Solverson (Allison Tolman) from investigating a resident who could be a murderer. Her disobedience pays off in the form of nabbing the bad guy.

Fargo - Allison Tolman

John Luther, Luther (Netflix)
Detective Chief Inspector Luther (Idris Elba) solves creepy London crimes but gets way too close to the psychos committing them. The hero of the BBC series "doesn’t necessarily follow procedure," Elba has said. That’s an understatement!

Luther - Idris Elba

Masterpiece: Endeavour, Season premiere, Sunday, June 24, 9/8c, PBS (check local listings at pbs.org)