Life On Mars : Season 1

  • Network:
  • Series Premiere Date: Oct 9, 2008
Life On Mars Image
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 26 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 100 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Sam Tyler (Jason O'Mara) finds himself transported to the 1970s after a car accident in this remake of the award-winning British drama.
  • Genre(s): Drama, Suspense, Science Fiction

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 26
  2. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    100
    The producers ("Alias" alums Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec) have created a Dickensian (with a nod to L. Frank Baum) universe, draped in shadows, pastels and mystery, while aurally wrapped in chestnuts from the Sweet, Five Man Electrical Band and the Ramones. This new series has enormous promise.
  2. 80
    They've pulled together a vivid cast and evoked the ideal tone - not comedy, not psychodrama, not sci fi, but an intriguingly evasive blend of them all.
  3. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    80
    Life on Mars offers fine performers, some arresting images, sly satire and a terrific song score.
  4. Based on a popular BBC series, Life on Mars, like Mad Men, makes a long-ago era feel both alien and nostalgic, like in the sweet moment where Sam wanders into a record store and just beams.
  5. I'm not wholly convinced by the American Life on Mars.
  6. ABC sticks its neck out a bit further with Life on Mars, a pretty good remake of a remarkable series that also appeared on BBC America
  7. 50
    Jason O'Mara is enormously appealing as the determined but befuddled Tyler....Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Life on Mars' writers, who seem to have been knocked considerably deeper into history than their character.

See all 26 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 47 out of 56
  2. Negative: 7 out of 56
  1. BryanB
    Apr 9, 2009
    10
    It took some time in the beginning to hit stride, but the series eventually found its niche and was incredibly strong the second half of the It took some time in the beginning to hit stride, but the series eventually found its niche and was incredibly strong the second half of the season. Great cast and visuals throughout. The nuanced and multifaceted Sam/Annie love story was the best of the season and one of the strongest in television history, and the surprise twist at the end of the series tied everything together well. The series will be missed. Expand
  2. MeganC.
    Oct 31, 2008
    10
    Great show, great cast, great story line! I really look forward to this show each week and it doesn't hurt that the lead, Sam, is Great show, great cast, great story line! I really look forward to this show each week and it doesn't hurt that the lead, Sam, is gorgeous! Worth watching! Expand
  3. RobB.
    Nov 23, 2008
    10
    A week is too long between episodes. LOM captures the fun of a TV Cop show, and then intricately intertwines character depth, emotional A week is too long between episodes. LOM captures the fun of a TV Cop show, and then intricately intertwines character depth, emotional stories, and an element of the supernatural flawlessly. Expand
  4. AndrewF
    Oct 17, 2008
    9
    I haven't seen the BBC version, so I'll wait until after the first season of the US one to compare and judge. And I'll admit, I haven't seen the BBC version, so I'll wait until after the first season of the US one to compare and judge. And I'll admit, my first thought when I saw previews was "another time travel show? great." But I'm hooked after 2 episodes. While Keitel as Hunt may not work out in the end (Colm Meaney supposedly was axed after the first pilot, which is too bad...I'd like to see him do the NYC Irish cop thing), I can believe and like him, as well as the rest of the cast. O'Mara? Between him and Dominic West, some of my favorite TV police are Brits/Irish, and I can't tell. Good on them. What locks me in is the setting, both visual and audio. The soundtrack works some timelsss hits into the show in subtle ways. But the visual, wow. When Tyler looks up and sees the WTC towers, I could viscerally feel the "no way" that passed his lips on screen. As someone who watched them fall, maybe that's just a bit of wistful nostalgia. But the rest of the scene, from the cars to the people on the street to the smallest detail doesn't so much dwell on minutiae as it does create a stage for the characters to work on. I can forgive an anachronism here and there, and I'm sure I'll have to. But the atmospheric quality of how the show puts the characters in 1973 works best in how it doesn't go out of the way to scream at you, but exists on a finely ground layer of the show, only jumping out when absolutely necessary. I hate Lost. Sci-Fi/Drama crossovers generally lose me very quickly. But this one I think I can grow to like if the writers can keep the questions about Tyler's predicament to a minimum while still giving him (and us) some hope, but the way the show is being framed, he can take his time getting back to 2008. Expand
  5. KretzM.
    Nov 22, 2008
    9
  6. RichardS.
    Oct 12, 2008
    8
    Not quite the punch as BBCA LOM, but still very good. They need to not overdo Imperioli's goofy metaphors and maybe just a single Not quite the punch as BBCA LOM, but still very good. They need to not overdo Imperioli's goofy metaphors and maybe just a single throwback to the twin towers would have been more powerful. Keitel is good, but a bit aged to play Gene Hunt, but maybe "time will tell." Sorry for that. Expand
  7. TonyG.
    Oct 11, 2008
    0
    When a police detective can't figure out he's in 1973 after all the clues (newspapers, signs, people, even the WTC) and still calls When a police detective can't figure out he's in 1973 after all the clues (newspapers, signs, people, even the WTC) and still calls the 'operator' to connect him to a cell phone after walking into his old police precinct and wondering what happened to his desk, you have to figure the writers don't have much of a story to tell. Maybe they should import the original instead of remaking it. Expand

See all 56 User Reviews