'Endeavour': Why the PBS Show May End After Season 8

Endeavour's shortened seventh season may have now aired in full on PBS, but the show will be back for more episodes. In August 2019, the Inspector Morse spin-off's UK network ITV renewed the show for Season 8, which was then set to air in 2021. Though the coronavirus-related production shutdowns might mean that the show is delayed, fans of the retro British crime drama will get at least three more mysteries solved by Endeavour Morse (played by Shaun Evans).

There are a number of warning signs, however, that Endeavour Season 8 will be the final set of episodes from the show, which airs as part of PBS's Masterpiece strand of British dramas.

Originally, according to an interview with Endeavour showrunner Russell Lewis, the plan was to end the show in the late 1960s, but Season 8 will be set in 1971. The writer told Digital Spy in 2019: "If there's an appetite to see Endeavour in the early '70s – if the audience are keen, and the network are keen, and the guys want to do it, then yeah, absolutely [we'd do it].

"In a way, I'd always thought we'd probably stop in the '60s, but there's still more stories to tell."

endeavour season 8
Shaun Evans and Roger Allam in 'Endeavour,' which has been renewed for Season 8 ITV

In a July 2020 interview with RadioTimes.com, meanwhile, he hinted that the show may be coming towards its climax in '71. Lewis said: "There are some clear waypoints in '71, if that turns out to be the year we address. Everything is in the planning stage. We know the cards that remain in our hand, and it's very much a case of arranging the order in which they're played in order to bring about the desired 'grand slam'."

Morse actor Shaun Evans has also hinted that he is thinking about bringing his time as the detective to an end. In a Radio Times magazine interview, he said the show was "very close" to its end, later adding: "This is our story and we shouldn't be staying at the party too long."

Notably, Endeavour is coming up to the length of the show it acts as a prequel to, Inspector Morse. Between 1987 and 2000, Morse ran for 33 episodes. So far, Endeavour has had 28 episodes. If Season 8 has four episodes, the same number as the majority of seasons of the show, which will bring the total to 32. This could mean the show comes to an end then, or that the creators could bring the show to an end with one last feature-length mystery that brings the total of Endeavour episodes in line with Morse.

Lewis told Digital Spy that he has always know how the show will end, and that he has a "larger destination in mind" for the final episode. However, it remains to be seen whether this will be in Season 8 or in a future set of episodes.

Endeavour Season 8 is coming soon to PBS.