Season #: 1, 2, 3
Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 9
  2. Negative: 1 out of 9
  1. Glenister is still riveting, naturally, and Hawes is a real gift. Maybe that's enough to offset the smaller issues, like the cartoonish hero worship of Hunt (three quarters of the way through the pilot, there's a moment where you half expect a laugh track to kick in).
  2. Reviewed by: Jessica Shaw
    91
    The sequel ditches the '70s for the '80s--but the original's hard-boiled plots, retro-pop score, and scene-stealing politically incorrect Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister) remain.
  3. Britain in the 1980s is arguably a lot more interesting than Britain in the ’70s, and Ashes to Ashes sharply engages the factionalism of the day: the mounting antipathies of the working class, the growth of privatization and development, the fury over nuclear armament.
  4. Alex's gender guarantees that her dynamic with the boss will be a bit different, and it's Glenister, whose Hunt continues to leave Harvey Keitel's in the dust, who's still the best reason to climb into this particular time machine.
  5. It's in that "perhaps" and "possibly" that Ashes to Ashes finds a way forward, and although it's not as good as the original, it pushes many of the same buttons and sews on a few new ones. It's quite enjoyable.
  6. Ashes to Ashes has a cheekier energy that the original "Life on Mars," one that carries the show even when the police procedural stories are relatively bland.
  7. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    50
    Alex's gender does open the door to further explore the era's sexual politics, but much of that was still addressed in the first show, and Hawes' dry performance doesn't seriously alter the dynamics.
  8. If the early Ashes episodes are representative of the series, this show will indeed be good fun.
  9. 37
    Though many small things are executed well, some big parts of this show just don’t work, at least in the first couple of episodes.
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 11 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Feb 8, 2014
    9
    Unfortunately, John Simm is gone in this series, however, Gene Hunt is still as funny and "charming" as ever. 80's is a better time periodUnfortunately, John Simm is gone in this series, however, Gene Hunt is still as funny and "charming" as ever. 80's is a better time period than 70's in my opinion. Full Review »
  2. KevinR
    Mar 10, 2009
    8
    Keely Hawes doesn't have quite the same charm as John Simm but it's still a very solid series with amazing characters, great drama, Keely Hawes doesn't have quite the same charm as John Simm but it's still a very solid series with amazing characters, great drama, and fantastic humor. Full Review »