Life on Mars : Complete BBC Series 2  [DVD]
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Life On Mars: Series 2 is the smash-hit cop show starring John Simm as a detective who is involved in a car accident and wakes to find himself transported back to 1973 a world dominated by Ford Cortina s, sheep-skin jackets and very hard coppers. Includes 121 mins of extras.
Its hard to believe its over. Life On Mars shot out of nowhere at the beginning of 2006 to become a vital, gripping drama, and this second series more than maintains the sky high standards that the first so memorably set.
What makes it even more surprising is that all the ingredients were there for it to go so tragically wrong. The central premise, that for unknown reasons modern day police detective Sam Tyler wakes up in the 1970s, is fraught with potential potholes, yet the creators of Life On Mars twist it very much in their favour, delivering a skilful, taut comparison between policing then and policing now.
Its this clash of approach that provides many of Life On Mars sparks, but nonetheless, it has much more than that going for it. It boasts, for instance, a terrific level of attention to detail, and weaves in quality narrative too, with Tyler frequently caught between unravelling his predicament, the crimes before him, and his 1970s colleagues with their 1970s tactics.
This second, and final, series wraps things up surprisingly well, and consistently delivers laughs, action and plenty of pub talk off the back of it. Its also a delight to revisit Life On Mars, and that makes this collected boxset of the episodes of season two an absolute must for any fan of gritty, interesting and terrifically entertaining British drama. Quite, quite brilliant. --Jon Foster
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Top Customer Reviews
It is more driven and piles on the plot in ways that are imaginative and complex.
The extra's on this DVD are also more slickly put together and professional.
I still have some extras left to watch but can only say at the end of the series I felt that I'd just watched something highly significant and wonderful.
The two complete series as drama will no doubt be studied forever by budding film students. And watched by new generations as it is repeated down the line.
I thought it was wonderful that something this bold could be made now amidst a 'reality tv' society. And perhaps it will lead the way for other production companies to take risks as the writers here did in order to push boundaries and bring more quality to the screen.
As said before in my review of series one - though it lacks the masterful genius of Dennis Potter (see The Singing Detective, which is simply one of the best dramas I've ever seen) - it brings an intelligent thought provoking drama to mainstream. Particularly in this series - this drama is entitled to 5 stars of its own.
Watch it then tell all your friends to watch it!
For me, Series 2 gets the nod over Series 1 simply because all the characters are now fully bedded in and we can watch them growing as people with every episode.
Sam Tyler and Gene Hunt, the leading characters, are flawed but totally sympathetic, which is a tribute to the actors playing them. Sam may be a gratingly PC modern policeman but we empathise with his decency, kindness and isolation in a strange world. Gene may make us blanche, but we know that he too is a decent man who has to be hard to keep a bad world away from good people. Forget all the questions still unanswered at the end of the saga: for me the biggest is why on earth Philip Glenister has not yet won a BAFTA.
But it's not just the leading two men turning in the stellar performances. The lovely WDC Annie Cartwright (she could grind corn at my windmill any day) not only provides the love interest but lightens the tone in what could otherwise have been a grim show. The sexism she faces is shocking, yet her response is to win over her colleagues by making herself indispensable. By the end of the show, she still gets the banter but not worse than any other male character. In other words she's fully accepted.Read more ›
The humour, the warmth between characters, the 'baddies' - the '70s kitsch all seem to have been turned up from 10, to 11!
Sam meets his mentor in his younger days and is shocked to see his hero as a pathetic man who takes all the racist jibes thrown at him rather than the strong stalwart of justice he is familiar with.
The supposed-IRA bomber episode was one of the strongest I've seen - and the following story about Swingers was fantastic, with Gene (Philip Glenister) giving one of the funniest performances of the series.
And the 7th Episode - what can I say?!!! Absolutely amazing, with the DCI on the run - this was another strong episode helped along with yet another DCI Gene Hunt classic moment - dressed as Tufty the squirrel!
In this episode, Gene Hunt is less jovial (as you'd imagine when on the run) and we see more of his vulnerable side, something which seems to be a theme running through the second series - with the odd line here and there about his past tragedies. Acting DCI Morgan adds a new element to the episode as a Jobsworth character - who interrupts Sam and Annie just as it looks as thought they are about to engage in some over-friendliness!
And then, the finale...
...And what a finale!!!
Is Morgan all he seems to be? Is Sam in a coma? If he is will he return to his own time? Will he stay with Hunt and the team?
Well, if you haven't seen it then I don't want to spoil it for you, so I won't give anything away.
The finale is without doubts one of the TV highlights of the last decade, and then some! Emotionally charged to the point that your hair starts to tingle whilst you watch it.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I think in many ways series 2 of this quality drama exceeds the first.
It is more driven and piles on the plot in ways that are imaginative and complex. Read more
Great series, have thoroughly enjoyed watching it as I missed it on tv. entertaining, plenty of action and lots of politically IN-correct banter, so refreshing.Published 1 month ago by Pam