The German Woman (a perfect introductory episode)

3: The French Drop(Feb '41);Enemy Fire(Feb '41);They Fought In the Fields(April '41); War of Nerves(June '41)

2: Fifty Ships (Sept '40); Among the Few (Sept '40); War Games (Oct '40); The Funk Hole (Oct '40)

1: The German Woman(May '40);The White Feather(May '40);A Lesson in Murder(June '40);Eagle Day(Aug '40)

The German Woman (a perfect introductory episode)

Postby TwiningsGirl64 » Sun Aug 07, 2016 3:17 am

I very much enjoyed the German Woman.
It was a perfect introductory episode for the main characters of FW. :hug:
I adored the initial look of astonishment on Foyles face when he realized the driver appointed to him by the Assistant Commissioner was a young woman. It was like he'd just been slapped in the face with a wet fish! LOL
Loved the bubbly, positive, personality of Samantha, chatting a hundred words a minute to her new boss, right from the onset, unperturbed by his rank or Seniority. I was glad that she was not too deterred or put off from her new role after Foyles firm but gentle reprimand and cautionary glare that she harness her enthusiasm just a smidgen, because had she done as he asked and obeyed his direct order to stay in the car, Foyle would not have got his man!
Very much enjoyed the father/son introduction at 31 Steep Lane and interested to learn of Foyle Seniors love of fly-fishing. They have a great rapport and theres clearly a strong bond between them and that they share the same witty, dry sense of humour. Couldn't help but laugh when Andrew complained about there being b****r all in the larder and his Dad retaliated with "well there was b****r all indication Andrew, that you were coming home".
Then we meet Paul Milner a bit further along in the episode and learn that he and Foyle are old work colleagues. Milner was a Detective Sergeant in peace time and Foyle obviously held him in high enough regard to have requested that he work for him. But Milner refused and joined the war effort as a Corporal with the Terriers at Trondheim where he was seriously injured, and is now an amputee.
One thing I thought interesting was Foyle seemed to question the fact that Milner was only a Corporal in the army, remarking quite pointedly to the doctor that Milner had held the rank of Detective Sergeant in the Police Force and it made me think. Were Policemen automatically given an Officers ranking on entry to the Armed Forces?
I was very glad to see Foyle take the initiative and make contact with Milner at the Hospital, to ask him a second time to come and work with him. I thought it showed the mark of the man that he didn't think Milner useless nor did he allow Milner to think of himself as useless just because he'd lost the lower half of his left leg. Foyle knew the mans life would be better served if he didn't procrastinate too much about what he'd been through and what he'd lost, and that there were more ways for him to be useful other than just in the physical sense.
He gave Milner a reason and purpose for getting on with life again, and helped rescue him from what could have been a destructive downward spiral into depression. So Bravo to the wonderful Saint Christopher. :foylekiss:
And then the perfect close to the very first episode ... Sam and Foyle go to collect Milner from the hospital
"Morning Sergeant. Thought you might like a lift" to which Milner accepts and Foyle gives that little nod in the direction of the Wolseley, almost as if to encourage Milner that it was alright, he was in good hands.
And so the stage is set for episode 2. :biggrin: :thumbsup:
"Well... things the way they are... good for the time being's perhaps enough." (CF to BH: They fought in the fields)
"MK...never less than a joy to watch." (Jaci Stephen)
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Re: The German Woman (a perfect introductory episode)

Postby starlight » Sun Aug 07, 2016 10:36 am

:wavehello: Hello TwiningsGirl64.

Glad you've enjoyed The German Woman. Have you binge-watched all the episodes yet, or are you rationing yourself? :wink:

Re the Milner rank thing: Foyle would know that there's no equivalence of rank between the police and the army, apart from informal courtesies, such as officer's mess hospitality being extended to police inspectors and above. Corporal is a respectable rank to have achieved, considering Milner would have had to start at the bottom. It's two promotions: private to lance corporal, and then another step to full corporal, and Milner would have been in the army less than 8 months.

When Foyle mentions Milner's former police rank, I think he is simply making known the young man's achievement pre-army, and emphasising the double tragedy - a curtailed career, and now an amputation. Milner has lost out twice, as did so many men who fought. Foyle makes it his business to point out that Milner isn't just a statistic and has sacrificed plenty.

Hope you'll post more impressions as you work your way through FW! :thumbsup:
Do I need to remind you...how much you can trust me?
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Re: The German Woman (a perfect introductory episode)

Postby Lynette » Sun Aug 07, 2016 9:56 pm

To add to Starlight's comments about military ranks:

In the military, corporal and sergeant are not officer ranks. They're NCOs, noncommissioned officers -- a sort of bridge rank between the mass of privates and the officer class. NCOs start out as privates and are promoted up because they show leadership ability. Their role is to maintain order and discipline and to relay orders from the officers down to the men and see that they are carried out. They're hugely important, the glue that keeps the service working smoothly, but especially in Foyle's day they tended to come from the lower classes and would never garner the same respect as commissioned officers.

To be a commissioned officer was to be from a higher, more educated class -- not the aristocracy or even the gentry, necessarily, but certainly from an educated, more privileged background. An officer was by definition considered a gentleman. Paul Milner was probably from a lower-middle-class backgound (most police officers were). He had worked his way up to police sergeant by his late twenties, so it's not surprising that the Army saw fit to promote him to corporal in short order. His time on the force would have given him experience commanding men, making him a natural choice for an NCO. But he came from the wrong class to be a commissioned officer.

So how does this apply to Foyle's own life? In Eagle Day, he talks to Andrew about his World War I service: "Went in as a private, got sent to France ... came out as what they called a temporary officer and gentleman only because there was nobody else left." So Christopher Foyle, son of a police sergeant and a young policeman himself, clearly showed enough leadership ability and courage in the trenches that he was not only made an NCO, but actually achieved commissioned officer rank despite his humble birth because of the horrifically high casualty rate.

One has to infer that his war experience, despite being the "worst three years of my life", were the making of the man, creating the commanding presence that we meet decades later in the form of a Chief Superintendent.
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Re: The German Woman (a perfect introductory episode)

Postby TwiningsGirl64 » Mon Aug 08, 2016 1:39 am

Thanks for the wonderful responses S & L
I find it extremely interesting how we each perceive the things that we see and hear :thumbsup: :D

Starlight Im ashamed to say I had no rationing control whatsoever :lol: so yes, totally binge watched all 28 episodes. Several in a row, (some days) :pleased: Became so thoroughly engrossed I actually missed meals :eek: and on one occasion neglected to pick up the hubby's suit from the dry cleaners :oops: But it was just so wonderful. I couldn't help myself. The episodes were all so intriguing, and it was sweetly romantic in places, there was some great witty humour throughout and of course theres the History Lesson, which for me has been a very worthwhile lesson indeed. But of course in my haste, I've likely missed lots of important little tidbits (so I'll undoubtedly have to re-watch) :lol:

Re the Milner rank thing: Foyle would know that there's no equivalence of rank between the police and the army, apart from informal courtesies, such as officer's mess hospitality being extended to police inspectors and above. Corporal is a respectable rank to have achieved, considering Milner would have had to start at the bottom. It's two promotions: private to lance corporal, and then another step to full corporal, and Milner would have been in the army less than 8 months.


Ah yes! I should have realized that. Of course Foyle would know the ranking system and how it all works, having been in both the armed forces as well as the police force.
And the proof was right there in that excellent scene in Eagle Day when C.F was talking to Andrew about his WW1 Service (really excellent reference there. Cheers Lynette :thumbsup: )
There was just something in the way Foyle questioned the doctor, he sounded pained (and I just didnt connect that pain as pertaining to sympathy for Milners cut-short career or his tragic injury)
It did appear to me that Foyle somehow looked upon the rank of Corporal as an almost "insult" to the young man.
But after hearing your points of view, and learning how ranking is done in the Army, Ive re-watched and I can now see that you could interpret Foyles behaviour rather more as a sigh of sorrow / sympathy for Milners misfortunes, his enduring a double whammy as it were as well as pointing out his respectable career achievements within the Police Force.
"Well... things the way they are... good for the time being's perhaps enough." (CF to BH: They fought in the fields)
"MK...never less than a joy to watch." (Jaci Stephen)
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