The murder of an ex-deputy police commissioner & the theft of a single chapter of his memoirs cause morse concern. It soon becomes apparent that the missing chapter relates to a murder committed 18 yrs ago which was at the... more » time investigated by the victim & morse himself. Studio: Bfs Ent & Multimedia Limi Release Date: 02/04/2003 Run time: 104 minutes« less
Junglies | Morrisville, NC United States | 03/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This episode of the Morse series provides the viewer with some insight into the development of Morse's character.The death of senior police office shortly after his retirement celebration sets the scene of a murder investigation which departs from the immediate concern of his murder to become a much broader investigation which encompasses an 18 year old unresolved murder mystery which Morse was involved in.In this rather unusual Morse there are some exemplarary performances notably from Pat Heywood (RootInto Europe) and Oliver Ford Davies (who would later co-star with Thaw in the sublime series, Kavanagh Q.C.). What distinguishes this particular Morse from the others is the degree of personal involvement shown by Morse. Despite his usual disspassionate, academic approach. Morse cannot resist responding to the friction from his old colleague who found success following his mentor, the Deputy Chief Police Commissioner to London. Also there is a heightened sensitivity shown by Morse to the case of the young girl, murdered many years earlier.There are the usual twists and turns but in particular the scenes where the long suffering suspect of the child's death is finally completely cleared of any involvement. At that point the latest suspect is mentioned only for the first accused to fiercely criticise the police for their continued incompetence.The conclusion to the story is a tragic scene wherein Morse confronts the killer with the evidence of his guilt. At that juncture the viwere is faced with sympathy with the killer's motive for the crime only to discover that the man who was killed was doing so protecting his child's life in just the same way that the murderer is revenging his.Here the extent of Morse's involvement is revealed and one of the lasting impressions we have is the depth of tremendous sadness in his eyes.This episode shows us the emotional side of Morse in many different ways. The storyline is supported in this regard by a stellar performance of Kevin Whately who gives vent to his frustrations with what he perceives to be Morse's attitude and verbally lashes him, only to discover later that he was wrong and very sheepishly apologises. Morse is magnanimous in his acceptance of the apology and moves on.All around a very polished performance and an enthralling whodunit in the very best traditions of the genre. A+++"
One of the Best
Tom | Toronto,, Ontario, Canada | 10/20/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not counting those adaptations based on actual Dexter novels, "Second Time Around" may well be the best single episode in an almost continuously excellent series. The strengths of the series are here in abundance: compelling plots, tight direction, interesting characters, and, unlike a few of the later episodes, a denouement that not only make senses and is unrushed but that has real emotional and psychological impact as well. Thaw and Whately are in top form, the best one-two punch in crime fiction since Holmes and Watson. This episode is also an excellent example of one of the thematic preoccupations of this series: middle-age melancholy and the toll it sometimes takes. "Second Time Around" is yet another example of the superb work of John Thaw as Morse--even in those episodes which lack the usual tension and bite, Thaw's Morse is an astounding presence, irritable, acidic, vulnerable, funny, pompous, and compelling, by turns, and thoroughly, entertainingly, convincing. For those unfamiliar with the series, here is a good place to start."
"He admitted it, Morse. Why would he do that?!"
Matthew Gladney | Champaign-Urbana, IL USA | 08/28/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Second Time Around" is quite possibly the best of the 33 "Inspector Morse" episodes. If you're a fan of the series and don't own it yet, then you should consider it a must-have. If you're new to the series - start here.An old police detective is murdered while writing his memoirs. A suspect, Frederick Redpath, is brought-in for questioning. Morse and another chief inspector on the case, Dawson, recognize the man as a suspect from a child murder case from over a decade ago. Dawson becomes heavily involved in the new case, and Morse and his sergeant, Lewis, are trying to work at it from their own angle.There is conflict, emotion, heartache, introspection, and mystery aplenty in "Second Time Around", and all of these factors come together to help make the episode a real treat. The direction is wonderful, and the acting is amazing. John Thaw, as usual, excels as Morse, and Kevin Whately does well as the ever-faithful Lewis. Oliver Ford Davies, an underrated gem of an actor, is convincing as the troubled Redpath, but the real star of this story is Kenneth Colley (famous from the first "Star Wars" trilogy) as Chief Inspector Dawson. Probably one of the best characters ever to grace the Morse series."Inspector Morse" is one of my all-time favorite television shows, and this episode is simply tremendous. It encompasses the best aspects of the series: an introspective Morse, a haunting murder case, great guest stars, and sorrowful music from Puccini ('Senza Mamma' from Suor Angelica). This is simply the best of "Morse". Don't pass it up."
"Ideals come to torment us all, at some stage."
Mary Whipple | New England | 03/19/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Among the best two or three of the thirty-three episodes of the Inspector Morse series, _A Second Time Around_ opens with the murder of Charlie Hillian, a well-liked, former Deputy Police Commissioner of the Thames Valley Police. Charlie had been working on a book about famous local cases from the past, and a key chapter, involving the death of an eight-year-old girl, eighteen years ago, has been stolen. Chief Inspector Morse also worked on that horrifying case, as did Chief Inspector Patrick Dawson, a much more aggressive policeman than Morse, and when Dawson and Morse both begin to investigate the death of Hillian and its connections to the death of the child, tensions rise, and Morse is unable to keep his infamous, hair-trigger temper under control.
Dawson and Morse have always had different ideas about who killed the little girl, and, not surprisingly, they have different ideas about who might have had the motivation to kill Charlie Dawson. Their confrontations eventually involve Morse's sidekick, Sgt. Lewis, who stands up to Morse and refuses to obey his order to take a vacation, leading to the strongest argument ever seen between Morse and Sgt. Lewis.
Exceptionally well focused (unlike a few others in this series), the mystery unfolds inexorably, while always keeping the reader interested in the characters' human qualities, their frailties, and their need for personal space (and secrets). The acting by John Thaw (Morse) and Kevin Whately (Lewis), is outstanding, as always, especially in the moving confrontation scene. The subordinate cast, notably Kenneth Colley, as Inspector Dawson, add significantly to the drama. An abused, dyslexic son; a timid mother; a man tormented for years by an anonymous accuser and forced to change his name; a loving and lonely grandmother who has lost both her granddaughter and her daughter; and a neglected wife, all beautifully acted, add depth to the human side of this drama.
Lovers of photography will applaud the fine composition and color of many scenes--a vehicle parked at just the right angle outside a country house to emphasize the curves of the wisteria growing on its façade, backlit hallway scenes which show silhouettes, and the misty countryside in which Lewis kills the romantic atmosphere by telling a fellow policeman, in dire straits, to "go behind the trees." Morse's interest in opera is featured in music throughout the episode. Beautifully structured, finely focused, and filled with the human qualities which make the series so admired, Second Time Around is one of the best of the best. n Mary Whipple "
Pamela Williams | Saginaw, Texas USA | 09/15/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This entry in the series begins with the death of a retired police superintendant who was engaged in writing a book about his most interesting cases. His death occurred as he interrupted an intruder. It is later determined that the intruder took with him a chapter dealing with the unsolved murder of a child, a murder which had been investigated 17 years earlier. This episode was splendid for several reasons. For one thing, the viewer is kept guessing for quite some time concerning the identity of the intruder/killer, as Morse considers and ultimately dismisses several people as suspects. Another satisfying aspect of this entry is that the probe into the policeman's death results in the solution to two previous homicide cases. Finally, a definite strain of irony is evident in this mystery in that two of the principal characters perform strikingly different deeds--- but with the same basic motivation (parental love toward their children). Once more, the viewer can only watch in admiration as Morse dissects small details (clothing in photographs and dates on old post cards) to unravel the layers of mystery concealing the solution to previous crimes. The character portrayals in this episode are first rate, particularly the role of Chief Inspector Dawson. The character of Dawson, with his hollow life and tortured soul, represents one of the most memorable personalities in the series of Morse mysteries. I can safely assert that this entry in the series is among the top ten qualitatively."