The Endeavour finale gunshot mystery unraveled as who or what Endeavour Morse shot in the end is revealed

The Endeavour finale gunshot came after one of the show’s most heart-breaking moments and likely left many fans fearing the worst

Endeavour finale gunshot explained. Seen here are Morse and Thursday in Endeavour
(Image credit: BritBox/ITV)

The Endeavour finale gunshot came just three minutes before the end of the last episode and some might’ve been left worried about Endeavour Morse.

The Endeavour ending was always going to be bittersweet for long-time fans as they prepared to say goodbye to DS Endeavour Morse and DCI Fred Thursday forever. But Endeavour season 9 did give us a chance to see Endeavour’s DS Jakes return and a lot of loose ends tied up beautifully, even though Morse’s eventual fate in Colin Dexter’s books and the Inspector Morse TV show was already known. Because of this and given the intensity of the last episode, the Endeavour finale gunshot and the several agonizing moments that followed was likely all the more shocking.

Here we explain the Endeavour finale gunshot, why some fans might’ve been a little confused and who or what Endeavour Morse shot at…

*Warning: Spoilers ahead!*

SHAUN EVANS as Endeavour and ROGER ALLAM as Fred Thursday.


Endeavour finale gunshot explained: Who or what did Endeavour Morse shoot? 

Just when Endeavour fans thought the finale couldn’t get more heart-stopping, the classic crime series delivered another dramatic moment shortly after DS Endeavour Morse and DCI Fred Thursday bid each other a fond final farewell. Throughout the 9-season show Thursday had his trusty gun with him and it proved more than a little useful in the dangerous situations he’d found himself in over the years. In the Endeavour finale he passed this to his loyal DS and it was this weapon that was responsible for the Endeavour finale gunshot. 

The next scenes of Exeunt showed Morse sitting on a bench in a churchyard holding Thursday’s gun and loading it with a bullet. All the time he was looking around, seemingly checking that no-one was around to spot him doing this.  

SHAUN EVANS as Endeavour


In a twist that likely left many fans who’ve never read the Colin Dexter Inspector Morse books fearing the worst, the camera then panned away to the picturesque surroundings as the sound of a gunshot rang out and birds flew into the sky. This created a level of intrigue surrounding who or what Endeavour might’ve shot and what exactly happened.

The Endeavour finale gunshot was followed by scenes that did nothing to calm viewers’ nerves as the screen faded to black with the narration of Chief Superintendent Bright delivering a reading that begun, “Our revels now are ended. These our actors, as I foretold you, were all spirits and are melted into air.” The Endeavour finale then showed the empty police station as he continued, accompanied by a choir, before the camera panned over Blenheim Palace.

Morse appeared shortly afterwards alive and unharmed, singing in a choir inside the palace. Given the scene with him loading a single bullet and how the gunshot sent birds flying into the air, it seems that although we didn't see it happen, the Endeavour finale gunshot was him either playing Russian Roulette or possibly firing into the sky or elsewhere in his surroundings. Perhaps he planned to do the former and ended up doing the latter, but either way it's likely he didn’t shoot at anyone else. With only three minutes left of the finale episode, however, it did add another layer of intensity and concern for Morse.

For Inspector Morse book and show lovers the Endeavour finale gunshot likely wasn’t quite so nerve-wracking as they’d have known he went on to become a DCI and later died in the Inspector Morse finale. But the gunshot in Endeavour’s last episode might still have left some wondering if Morse had fired at someone or something else unseen.

SHAUN EVANS as Endeavour


Ultimately, it looks as though no-one and nothing else was involved and the inclusion of the Endeavour finale gunshot meant that the revelation that Morse was fine added even more joy and relief for fans. The sight of Morse singing, shortly followed by him driving away in his beloved jaguar, was the perfect way to round off this bittersweet last ever episode as he resumed his daily life after all the anguish he’d gone through.

Endeavour seasons 1-9 are available to watch in the UK via ITVX, and season 9 is available via PBS for US viewers, with seasons 1-8 available via Amazon Prime.

Emma Shacklock

Emma is a Royal Editor with eight years experience working in publishing. Her specialist areas include the British Royal Family, ranging from protocol to outfits. Alongside putting her royal knowledge to good use, Emma knows all there is to know about the latest TV shows on the BBC, ITV and more. When she’s not writing about the next unmissable show to add to your to-watch list or delving into royal protocol, Emma enjoys cooking, long walks and watching yet more crime dramas!