Life On Mars

Season 1 Episode 2

The Real Adventures of the Unreal Sam Tyler

1
Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Oct 16, 2008 on ABC
8.7
out of 10
User Rating
135 votes
2

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

EDIT
While still trying to figure out how and why he is in 1973, Sam finds himself in the middle of an investigation involving robbery-homicides at check-cashing stores.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Crawling out of the shadows of the previous Life on Mars

    7.0
    I know I have been hard on this show because it's a remake of the UK version and John Simms was amazing as Sam Tyler. The American version is slowly getting better. They are still taking the UK stories and converting them over to our side of the globe. It's nice to see that in this version Sam has more of a social life and isn't as obsessed with work and figuring out how to get home.



    I'm super curious about episode 4 and if they do the whole "bent copper" thing. I mean the UK Gene Hunt has a lot of colloquialisms that are just lost in translation.



    Besides that, it is getting better and I'm please that they aren't just doing a carbon copy with old scripts. That little bit of Americana they throw in there really changes things up.moreless
  • Much, MUCH improved. I found myself entertained throughout it all!

    8.0
    I was critical of the first episode. I thought it was a cheesy knockoff of a quality drama. But this episode improved, it has it's on spark, and own unique style now.



    Jason O'Mara and Harvey Keitel seem more comfortable in their roles, and I was actually very impressed with O'Mara's take on Sam Tyler's character. Gretchen Mol is ok, but I find her not the right for the role - i.e. she's too sexy and confident!! Though I'll quickly get over that.



    The story, although similar to the UK version, manages to find its own hilarity - speedo guy, Nixon administration, Matrix illusions, lasagnes with herbs, mistaken cop identities - all of which made the episode very enjoyable to watch.



    New ways for Sam to keep in contact with 2008 - robot, naked hippies, broken glass, door reflections.... All good.



    Also, big plus on the fantastic sets and backdrops of old New York.



    I look forward to the next episode.moreless
Jason O'Mara

Jason O'Mara

Detective Sam Tyler

Harvey Keitel

Harvey Keitel

Lt. Gene Hunt

Michael Imperioli

Michael Imperioli

Detective Ray Carling

Jonathan Murphy

Jonathan Murphy

Detective Chris Skelton

Gretchen Mol

Gretchen Mol

Annie Norris

Heather Matarazzo

Heather Matarazzo

June

Guest Star

Pablo Schreiber

Pablo Schreiber

Kim Trent

Guest Star

Sylvia Miles

Sylvia Miles

Mrs. Salvaggio

Guest Star

John Cenatiempo

John Cenatiempo

Sizable Ted

Recurring Role

Lisa Bonet

Lisa Bonet

Maya Daniels

Recurring Role

Tanya Fischer

Tanya Fischer

Windy

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Trent mentions that Laugh-In is on tonight and he "has it bad" for Goldie Hawn. However, Goldie Hawn left the show in 1970.

    • When Sam and Gene fight in the hospital room, Sam makes a couple of martial arts-style moves that end with the now-famous Bruce Lee "Come and Get It" hand gesture that was later used by Neo and Morpheus in The Matrix trilogy.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Sam: (after Windy tells him that the lasagna has marijuana in it) You know I'm a cop?
      Windy: Then you must get the really good stuff.

    • Gene: (after Trent begins to drown) All right. Get him out, Chris.
      Chris: Well, I can't swim.
      Gene: Ray?
      Ray: I took some lessons when I was a kid... they didn't stick.

    • Windy: (after meeting Sam in the hallway who is looking up at the ceiling) What's up there?
      Sam: Well, for starters, um, no naked women.

    • Mrs. Salvaggio: (discussing her ashtray with Sam) My granddaughter Sofia made it for me. She loves to come over and see all the butts in there.
      Sam: Beautiful story. You should tell that to the Surgeon General.

    • Lee Crocker: (to Detective Ray Carling) Detective, if ignorance was a drug, you'd be high all the time.
      Sam: Now that was an analogy.

    • Ray: (to Sam) Eventually, I will burn you down, and I will bag your ashes, and I will bury your ashes in my yard where my big dog craps big crap.

    • Sam: It's like Guantanamo Bay in here!
      Chris: I wouldn't know. I've never been to Puerto Rico.

  • NOTES (2)

    • The miniature vehicle seen in this episode, called the Mars Pathfinder, landed on Mars on July 4, 1997, and was sponsored by the University of Arizona and NASA. Nicknamed Sojourner, the rover roamed the planet seeking clues about the surface, the air, and the temperature, and also looked for the possibility of life on Mars.

    • Music:
      "Life on Mars" by David Bowie
      "All the Way from Memphis" by Mott The Hoople
      "Get Down" by Gilbert O'Sullivan
      "I Am a Rock" by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel

  • ALLUSIONS (4)

    • Gene: (singing to the tune of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow") Where guns are made of gingerbread and criminals confess for lollipops.

      This is an allusion to the movie The Wizard of Oz in which Dorothy finds herself in the land of Oz and tries to find her way back home. This is the second reference to The Wizard of Oz in two episodes.

    • Kim Trent: Laugh-In's on tonight, and I got it bad for that Goldie Hawn.

      Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In was an award-winning series on NBC from 1968 to 1973. Actor Goldie Hawn became a household name because of her role on the show.

    • Mrs. Salvaggio: (to Sam) You know, if I squint there's a little bit of that... Steve McQueen.

      Until his death on November 8, 1980, Steve McQueen was a hugely popular actor who starred in a multitude of hit films, such as The Great Escape, The Cincinnati Kid, Bullitt and The Towering Inferno. Many actors have emulated Steve McQueen, including Jason O'Mara.

    • Gene: What's the hurry, Mark Spitz?

      Mark Spitz is an Olympic swimmer who won seven gold medals in 1972. His record was unbroken until Michael Phelps won eight gold medals in the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympic Games.

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