Life on Mars

Series 1

DVD - 2009
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Life on Mars
After a car accident, modern-day police detective Sam Tyler wakes up to find he has been transported to 1973. Is he crazy, in a coma, or back in time? He must solve crimes using low-tech, highly aggressive 1970s methods, butt heads with his boss, and find time for a possible romance with policewoman Annie.


From Library Staff

A suspenseful cop drama with an existential sci-fi twist. In the wake of a car accident, 21st century police detective Sam Tyler, played by John Simm, wakes up in 1970s Manchester. Is he dead, crazy, in a coma? Has he really traveled back in time? Philip Glenister plays Gene Hunt, Sam's 1970s era... Read More »

From the critics

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Feb 21, 2014
  • harrybrowne rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Outstanding series. Profoundly original and clever. Hysterically funny, as well as vulgar, bloody, sad, and tense. Acting is superb; only weak character is Annie Cartwright. She looks perpetually dazed. Plus the most phenomenal soundtrack with, thankfully, no disco.

Aug 17, 2013
  • Fionaenzo rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Loved this show! loved the ending -- worthy of the whole plot line. characters were engaging. so well done.

Jun 01, 2013
  • docjnsuss rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

DCI Sam Tyler is returning to the police station when he gets hit by a car, sent into a coma, and inexplicably transported back in time to 1973. There Sam is a Detective Inspector and he must butt heads with the current DCI in Manchester England where Sam grew up. The police procedures are primitive by today's standards although Sam remembers modern techniques. Besides working on cases Sam tries to figure out whether he is in a coma or whether he has really been transported back in time. Series 1 of this BBC version has excellent acting, great music and a realistic feel of the 70s. The Life on Mars series was also made in other countries such as the United States and Spain.

Mar 07, 2013

To jetboy2k and others who didn't care for the ending: there is a sequel, which the library system doesn't have - so don't let the ending of series 2 spoil it all for you by seeming inadequate - there really is an answer!

Jan 20, 2013
  • jetboy2k rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

I'm going to have to go against the grain with everyone on this one. This series was well acted, with some very appealing characters and an imaginative premise but, for me, the end/"answer" was a dud, and overall I just didn't see the purpose of the series. Ultimately, a story like this needs to have a really cool explanation that encompasses and answers all questions and mysteries raised during the run of the series, and (again, for me at least), this series didn't deliver on that. The answer was fairly predictable, and one aspect of the story that was very interesting was just sort of thrown in at the very end, with no actual explanation of what it meant. Sure, I could interpret what it was supposed to mean but, hell, if all you're going to do is to leave it up to me to interpret, then just write a short blurb about, "wouldn't this be a cool story," and let me come up with my own ideas.

Jan 07, 2013
  • gopherguts rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

we've watched the first few episodes and i think it's pretty good. it took me awhile to get used to the annoying 70's music that seemed to kind of overwhelm the show at first.
i say it's interesting, but i haven't seen the conclusion yet...

Sep 26, 2012
  • pronto1961 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

brilliant, simply brilliant.

Jan 28, 2012

It was recommended to us. We watched the entire first season in a few weeks, and now we're on to the 2nd season. It came together nicely at the end of the 1st season. The acting is very very good. The cars, the clothes, the props and the way of life are believable and I was sorry to see a car crash with one of those older Rovers. My heart sank there. Overall an award winning presentation for those who remember the days when life was so simple.

Nov 01, 2011
  • boogaloose rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Quirky and a little surreal with the time travel aspect, but the actors are great and story lines keep the viewers interest (obviously some crackerjack writers at work). The Det. Chief Inspector is a head-thumping boss a la Gerard Depardieu, but I came to like him more and more, and by the end of this series, he became close to my favorite. The plot line is a bit dark, but the crimes are not real graphic. Liked this a lot--can't wait to put in for series 2!

Mar 15, 2011
  • BakerStreetIrregular rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

One of my favourite British tv series.

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