The Women of Inspector Morse

The Women in the life of Inspector Morse.

(This post may contain spoilers)

Like real ale and music, women play a big part in the life of Morse though not as much as he would like. I have included the women who I believe Morse had an interst in and those women who had an interest in Morse, though not always for the right reasons. On that note I realised to late that I had omitted Jane Booker who played Phillipa Foster in the episode, Deceived by Flight. However, Ms Foster was only showing interest in Morse to find out if he was involved in the drug trafficking.


Jane Booker as Phillipa Foster

I would be interested to know your thoughts on the questions below;

1) Who would have made the better wife for Morse?

2) If you had a choice of one of the women featured in the Morse series to be your wife, who would it be?

3) As a woman which of the women featured in Morse would you like as your best friend?

4) Was there any woman who you believe I should have included in my video?

Please let me know eithr by clicking on the ‘leave a comment’ link at the bottom of the post. Or via the Endeavour/Morse/Lewis Facbook page or email me at

My answer to question one is Frances Barber who played Nicole Burgess in the episode, ‘The Death of the Self’.


My answer to question two would be Judy Loe.


I hope you enjoy the video.



  1. Laughing so hard I am CRYING! Having fun trying to guess your personal attraction and actresses’s liking for real ale, so much so I can’t answer your questions the first time through.

    BTW, not doing well guessing your attraction scale. Hell. But I’ll at least try to choose a “if I were to re-marry, which would I pick. ” Answer will be related to how domestic she is and if I think she’ll keep the house tidy and won’t mind I’m very heterosexual. Last part non-negotiable.

    Tally ho and I shall return! (Sorry for that but well that’s what you get for posing questions. )


  2. My guesses re: your attraction to these women remains abysmal.

    I’m mixed on which I’d marry and which I’d like as a friend. In any event, I must choose, so it’s Amanda Hillwood and Zoe Wanamaker for me. I’ll marry Amanda. She’s intelligent and cheeky. Not a good housewife , maybe, but nice to talk to. Zoe’s my friend and vote to marry Morse.

    Well done to you as producer, Chris! Very entertaining and I can’t imagine how much work this was!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Lisa. It took between five and six hours to produce, so a good chunk of time. Interesting choice of wife and best friend.


  3. I would make an excellent wife for Inspector Morse! I share his love of classical music, a good pint, opera, etc. I’m quite a shy person face to face but with the right man, not restrained in the bedroom. I imagine myself being wined and dined by Morse and gazing into those piercing blue eyes…I hope he wouldn’t think I was too young at 34 though. I have always had a fondness for older men.

    Sorry I didn’t bother to answer the other questions!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Angela. Thanks for taking the time to comment and a very interesting comment. I don’t think Morse would have been bothered about your age. I believe Morse would be happy that you share the same interests and were his intellectual equivalent.


    • Watching a lot of Morse? Sounds like a wonderful way to pass the time. I don’t drink ale myself. Going to have to disagree and say that I think Judy Loe as Adele was his perfect match and he should have been allowed to spend the rest of his life with her in Australia and not killed off.


  4. 1) Adele Cecil (Judy Loe) – The Wench is Dead
    2) Emma Pickford (Zoe Wanamaker) – Fat Chance
    2b) Monica Height (Barbara Flynn) – The Death of Nicolas Quinn

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good choices Morten. I still believe that Morse should have been allowed to live out his life with Adele in Australia rather than being killed off.


  5. Congratulations, It’ s been a hard task to produce; I agree with you, ( even I’m a woman too) with your own choice regarding Frances Barber as a lovely woman to Morse, but I think Judy Loe was a remarkable woman & character, so as a wife, she got the winner prize¡¡ From Chile, Southamerica


  6. It’s Grayling for me every time. I was about 14 when I saw those episodes and I did have a bit of a crush.. weird I know…it’s that classic profile and smile that lights up her face. I also remember Amanda Hillwood playing the stewardess in ‘Die Hard 2’! I would have loved it if she and Morse had got together, but better for her she didn’t. I love the scene when Morse is out for a drink with her in a beer garden and the ‘Hooray Henry’ with the sweater around his neck (probably meant to be a friend of hers from Med school) turns up. Morse looks mortified. I know exactly how he feels.. In answer to your questions:
    1. Grayling- she matches his intellect.
    2. Grayling
    3. The Zoe Wanamaker character. I’ve watched that epidode a few times, it was on again the other day and I still can’t get what she does wrong…(probably not one of your favourites, nor mine)
    4. Not sure

    Great video- you often mention your top 10 episodes but I am not sure you have a post with them listed…keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nothing weird about having a crush on Amanda Hillwood. She does have a great smile. Poor Morse saw his chances of keeping Grayling to himself for that evening suddenly crash spectacularly. You’re right I must put up a post with my favourite episodes. Jack, thank you so much for leaving a wonderful and interesting comment. I hope you continue to enjoy my blog.


  7. I’ would say Frances Barber though she’s probably the youngest of the actresses who’d feasibly go with Morse I feel Holly Aird is far too young for anything more than a quick naughty fling so discount her. Afterall she’s younger than Liz Hurley!. Dare I say personally speaking I find many of them somewhat on the dowdy side or a bit somewhat of their time perhaps.
    Most are well outside my age range of course and probably a fair bit older than my Parents Lisa Harrow who is very sexy in the swim wear scene could feasibly be my Grandmother


  8. I gave a lot of thought to Angela Morant as Ruth Rawlinson in Service of All the Dead as wife material for Morse. Endeavor shows his compassionate side and even commits perjury on her behalf. We never see the outcome to that final embrace. Though probably not sharing all his interests, he clearly had an interest in her, and she for him. How long would his interest last is moot, it appears to be a physical attraction and somewhat ‘needy’ on both sides. I also put a strong consideration for Amanda Hillwood as Dr. Grayling. But two professionals in the same field would never have enough time to commit so she’s out. She would be ideal, but how often does that work out? The final choice for me as a life partner for Morse is Zoe Wanamaker. Their careers wouldn’t crash head on, she has the academic background, and shares enough quirkiness to match Morse’s flights into epigram and appreciation of all things classical.

    For myself, I always admired Gemma Jones, really.


  9. Hi Tim. I think you are spot on regarding Ruth Rawlinson and Dr. Grayling. As for Emma Pickford played by Zoe Wanamaker i’m not so sure. Could Morse have coped with bringing up two young children? Could he cope with her being a woman of the cloth? I personally don’t think so. Anne Staveley could have been a good choice as she loved literature and music. Thanks for taking the time to comment Tim.


    • Hi Chris,

      Much welcome! This is a fantastic site, I am just beginning to look around at the other Morsenian
      nooks and crannies. Quite remarkable.
      I will revisit the Zoe Wanamaker episode, Fat Chance I believe.

      OK so in some episode I remember Morse telling Lewis or another underling constable
      “Melancholy, Lewis, it’s a melancholy of swans.” To describe a group like a congress of crows, or
      a sedge of cranes.

      Anyone remember that or am I totally in the fog?

      Cheers, Tim


      • Hi Tim. I think the episode you may be thinking of is ‘Driven to Distraction’. In that episode Morse, some other detectives and the forensic team are discussing what the collective noun would be for a group of pathologists. One of the detectives mentions that the collective noun for swans is a lamentation. The scene starts at 8 minutes and 20 seconds if you have the dvd. Eventually they agree on the collective noun for a group of pathologists being a ‘body’. Fat Chance will be the next Morse episode I will review once I have finished with the Endeavour connections. Again thank you your kind comments. It is always good to know another lover of the Morse universe.


  10. Chris, Aha! I will go directly to the Driving School !
    I am old enough to have most on VHS video and the specials on DVD. Hard to believe these go back to the late 1980’s. Since Oxford doesn’t appear to change much (never been there) the stories are pretty fresh today. I now have two episodes to watch for ‘homework’. Well three really as I must re view the Adele episode you are fond of.

    I am in the US of A – Chicago area. Friends in Canada also are Morse-aholics, so the infection is rampant in English speaking countries at least. I have all episodes in one form or another. That opening music sends chills of anticipation every time.
    Looking forward to your reviews.

    Kind regards, Tim


  11. I won’t comment on the suitability of various women for “Morse”, as it’s been awhile since I saw the episodes in question. However, readers may be interested to know (some likely already know) that Gemma Jones is the daughter of English actor Griffith Jones. He appeared in the 1937 film “A Yank at Oxford”, which was filmed, at least partly, in England. It’s been decades since I saw it, but I assume there were some scenes at the university.

    John Thompson


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