Oct. 2002
120 min.
ITV1 TV Network

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Foyle's War (UK) - 02x01 Fifty Ships

2x01 Fifty Ships

5/5 (1 vote)
First Aired: Nov. 16, 2003 on ITV1
Summary: When a dead body is found on Hastings beach the main suspects are an American multi-millionaire, an old flame of Sam's and a man that claims to be a Ditch refugee. Sam looks for a place to live when her house is destroyed by a bombing raid.

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Main Characters in this Episode

Guest Stars

Jenny Wentworth played by Rebecca Johnson (II)
Henry Jamieson played by Steven O'Donnell
Mrs. Esther Harrison played by Marlene Sidaway
Dr. Alan Redmund played by Clive Merrison
Colin Morton played by Paul Foster
Air Raid Warden played by John Rake
Kenneth Hunter played by Bryan Dick
Christopher Foyle played by Michael Kitchen

Episode Quotes

DCS Christopher Foyle: [Looking across the Channel] It's quite a view!
Sgt. Paul Milner: On a clear day you can see France.
DCS Christopher Foyle: ...and send a signal if you feel inclined.
Dr. Alan Redmund: [to Foyle when told of Hunter's suicide] Richard Hunter was a wreck of a human being. I don't think I've ever met anyone who had less reason to be alive.
Hans Maier: You will be one of the last people to see me alive. I would like you to get a message to my family.
Hans Maier: What is the message?
Hans Maier: What message can a man in my position give? Merely that I said goodbye, and that I was thinking of them at the end.


  • Goof (anachronisms): The photographer uses a Speed Graphic, an American camera. This would be improbable in itself, but the model (the "Pacemaker", easily identifiable by its white, rather than black, lens-board) was not marketed until 1947.
  • Goof (anachronisms): The date is September, 1940. Foyle goes into the local newspaper to get copies of photos taken at the site of a Nazi bombing. The editor says the photos have not been cleared yet by the government. As he is talking, and then after Foyle walks out, the editor is chain smoking, lighting one cigarette from another. Later, the American Howard Paige is also smoking. In all cases, they are filter cigarettes, which weren't in wide use until 1954. Throughout WWII, American soldiers were taught to "field strip" (shred) cigarettes so the enemy wouldn't know they were American cigarettes on the ground. They could do that with Lucky Strikes and Pall Malls, but filter tip butts are indestructible.
  • Goof (factual errors): When Richard Hunter is in the pub another customer hands him a copy of The Eastbourne Chronicle - it's dated Wednesday September 14th 1940. Obviously this is a "mock-up" and whoever produced it didn't check their dates. September 14th 1940 was a Saturday.
  • Goof (errors made by characters, possibly deliberate errors by the filmmakers): Colonel Letwin, who arrests the man suspected of being a German spy, is wearing his Sam Browne belt the wrong way. The strap should go through his right epaulette and not his left. It should cross his chest from top right to bottom left. It should not cover his decorations, as it does in this case. His holster should probably be on the other side as well but although this is not essential, it rather defeats the purpose of the belt which is to support a scabbard or heavy pistol.
  • Goof (anachronisms): The newspaper editor smokes filtered cigarettes. These were uncommon at the time and marketed chiefly to women. They would hardly be the smoke of a newspaper editor.


  • When Richard Hunter is in the pub reading the newspaper article about Howard Paige, another front page article describes the death on stage of an actress appearing in the Portsmouth Hippodrome. This incident actually occurred although it happened in 1936, not in 1940 as the newspaper indicates.
  • The comedy radio show that the desk sergeant listens to is It's That Man Again (known as ITMA) starring Tommy Handley. This was a staple radio show throughout the 1940s.
  • At the beginning of the episode, the wallpaper in the bedroom of Sam (played by Honeysuckle Weeks) is the pattern 'Honeysuckle' by William Morris.
  • At the end, Paige leaves in a RAF transport plane. The plane is the C 47 Skytrain, known to the RAF as the Dakota. This is the most famous military transport plane of WWII. There were versions for paratroopers, infantry, cargo, and fancied up VIP carriers. However, the first of the 2000 Dakotas delivered to the RAF arrived in 1942.
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