Morse, he's not. But new `Inspector' is able successor

TV Preview

July 29, 2006|By ROBERT LLOYD | ROBERT LLOYD,LOS ANGELES TIMES

HOLLYWOOD -- Inspector Morse is doubly dead: Creator Colin Dexter killed him off in The Remorseful Day (novel 1999, TV adaptation 2000), and the real-world death in 2002 of John Thaw, who played him in 33 100-minute episodes over 14 years, sealed the deal.

In the parlance of showbiz ballyhoo, Thaw was Morse; he inhabited and defined him. Thaw played other characters during that time, of course, but no one else ever played Morse - irascible, cultured, lonely, alcoholic and a poor steward of his own health (he dies not in an action but from complications of diabetes) - or likely ever will. (I am conveniently leaving out the radio adaptation, which starred John Shrapnel.)

Mystery! Inspector Lewis airs at 9 p.m. tomorrow on PBS.

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