Life on Mars (2008–2009)

TV Series  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 7,329 users  
Reviews: 83 user | 12 critic

A present-day car accident mysteriously sends a detective back to the 1970s. An American remake of the BBC series.

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Title: Life on Mars (2008–2009)

Life on Mars (2008–2009) on IMDb 7.3/10

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1  
2009   2008  
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 5 nominations. See more awards »

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After being involved in a car accident in 2006, DCI Sam Tyler (Simm) wakes up to find himself in 1973, the era of 'Sweeney' type policing, Mark III Cortinas, and flared trousers.

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Cast

Series cast summary:
...
 Detective Sam Tyler (17 episodes, 2008-2009)
...
 Detective Ray Carling (17 episodes, 2008-2009)
...
 Annie Norris (17 episodes, 2008-2009)
...
 Detective Chris Skelton (17 episodes, 2008-2009)
...
 Lieutenant Gene Hunt (17 episodes, 2008-2009)
...
 Sizable Ted (13 episodes, 2008-2009)
...
 Detective (12 episodes, 2008-2009)
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Storyline

Sam Tyler is a police detective in 2008 when he gets struck by a car and is knocked unconscious. When he comes to and finds himself in 1973 he goes to his precinct and is mistaken for a transfer from another precinct. He finds himself trying to do things a little differently from what he is used to. And he tries to figure out why he is in 1973. Written by rcs0411@yahoo.com

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Back in the nick of time

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Crime | Drama | Mystery | Sci-Fi

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2008 (USA)  »

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16:9 HD
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Trivia

The original BBC series took its name from the David Bowie song, "Life on Mars". See more »

Goofs

The type of rifle that is in Sam's hands when it is kicked by his Dad changes. When he places it down when he goes to talk to his younger version on the boat it looks like a Ruger Mini 30. When he picks it up a minute later it has changed into a Ak-47 or SKS type of rifle, which is then kicked by his Dad and it seems to go over the side of the boat. That is a less expensive type of rifle, which may be why it was the one tossed into the water. See more »

Connections

Remake of Life on Mars (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent on Both Sides of the Pond
31 January 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Having never heard of this show prior to its debut on ABC, I absolutely loved the American version. After a few episodes, the characters really developed, and the actors seemed to gel more than in the start. A lot of humor involved Michael Imperioli and Keitel condescending women's rights and confused by 'Spaceman's' current attitudes that we take as common sense.

The British version is obviously amazing, but it's two separate countries, so the issues and slang used (along with the scenery), are very different. To be honest, I didn't understand a lot of the references in the British version. I wasn't even alive in the 70s. I am almost positive a lot went over my head in the American version as well. The basic premise, the hallucinations, and character names are really the few things both have in common. The idea of a re-make is to improve something that was done poorly yet remained popular (usually a cult classic) or alter a successful idea to reach new audiences, not produce a carbon copy. Ricky Gervais understood that concept when bringing us the Office. Even today, his characters evolve yet maintain his original, core personalities, yet that may be due to his current involvement as producer and writer.

From reading the other reviews, I believe it was impossible for fans of the original to view the American version as something attuned to our history. The anger seemed more directed at Americans for even attempting this version, not its content, the sharp, sarcastic dialog (after the growing pains), or the humor in the ideals held a mere thirty years ago. Be that as it may, the outcry was heard and new fans of the series were stripped of a potential classic before it had a chance to develop into its beautiful and savvy predecessor. Sometimes the translation is lost on its way overseas (like Coupling), but I do not think that was the case here. Every week I was eager for a new episode. Every week I laughed and got more involved with the growing complexities within each character. Due to this, the final episode will infuriate just about everyone. It was an idea meant to be led to slowly and with a lot of misdirection, yet the cancellation sped us to the "wow" moment too quickly. It became a moment of confusion, instead of revelation.

I would advise purchasing either version and cranking the volume. Otherwise, you're not going to hear the music over your own laughing and voiced epiphanies. Both soundtracks are stellar, and half the fun is guessing at the end of the series like with Lost, and I promise, you will fail as soon as you start trying.

Both versions have a place in my heart. Enjoy them!


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