SEQUELS to popular series are not unusual but it’s a rare pre-quel that catches viewers’ attention and is also a critical success.

Endeavour, though, is one of those rarities as Shaun Evans returns to Sunday evening screens as the young Morse, finding his way through Oxford City Police CID in the macho 1960s.

It’s a tribute to the acting talents of Evans and his boss, DI Fred Thursday (the always brilliant Roger Allam) that the series which began in 2012 is becoming as popular as John Thaw’s original Inspector Morse series of 1987 to 2000.

It’s actually easy to see young Morse as a completely separate individual with only some shared traits, a love of classical music and whisky being the notable ones.

John Thaw was a fine actor and he made the Colin Dexter character very much his own but it shouldn’t detract from the achievements of Shaun Evans who has an impressive stillness and depth about him that means he will be around for a very long time.