Based on the pilot, Inspector Morse, the precursor PBS entry to Inspector Lewis is on the Must Watch List. Haven't seen a single episode of the signature Masterpiece series, but the performance of Kevin Whately (Morse's partner) is reason enough to see what his work was like in the previous show.
As to this review's titular production, add in the former seminary student character of DS Hathaway (Laurence Fox) and there is much to recommend Inspector Lewis even after a single pilot episode.
The typical English convoluted plot eventually involves three murders, including the gorgeous Sophie Winkelman as Regan Peverill. Ms. Winkelman is so beautiful, I had to lie down and catch my breath after hyperventilating for a full ten minutes, which is how long this ingenue is alive on screen.
Enter Inspector Lewis, fresh off an assignment in the Virgin Islands. Jet-lagged, the benevolent Lewis is met at the airport by the competent and God-fearing (Gasp!) Sergeant Hathaway. They report to a new crime scene, a sleep clinic where the most beautiful corpse in history lay on a bed in one of the cubicles. Regan Peverill has been shot and killed while slumbering.
Two murders later, Regan's boyfriend, Danny Griffon, and Danny's faux uncle, Tom Pollock (The always grand Danny Webb), Lewis finds himself in a Byzantine web of crime that resembles driving a car through Covent Garden streets.
By the time Lewis figures out who the murderer is, he has traveled through the entire city and university of Oxford; met the fetching head of the sleep clinic, Kate (Lizzy McInnerny); ignored the love struck Doctor Laura Hobson (Claire Holman); and got schooled by an Oxford math nerd. Actually, Lewis gets schooled by two Oxford math nerds.
The episode also displays as a modern retelling of Hamlet. The scion of a major car company is killed in a suspicious accident. The uncle takes over the business, and boinks his brother's widow. The son of the dead father vows revenge on the family. The daughter of the car company's COO commits suicide by drowning.
In the end, the bodies pile up, and while the Norwegians don't come to rescue the Kar Kingdom, the Japanese do.
As a side bar, the Chief Superintendant of the constabulary to which Lewis reports is played by the first BAD ACTRESS in the entire history of BBC/PBS Masterpiece productions. Won't even name her, but geez, take some more lessons, toots.