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November 26, 2014

Life on Mars: The Simple Secret of the Note in Us All

by Brad Trechak, posted Feb 26th 2009 3:02AM
Life on Mars(S01E12) To begin, I know exactly where they shot the opening scene for tonight's episode. It was in the New York Transit Museum. It's an old subway station that was converted into a museum and includes subway cars from different decades. I visited there recently, which allowed me to recognize some of the background advertisements from the scene.

In the original British series, it was determined that Sam was in a coma. In this series, I think he's in some sort of shared virtual reality. This is simply a hunch based on what we've learned so far.

On to the actual episode...

It looks like Harry Woolf is going from Chief of DIC to Republican Presidential candidate in 30 or so years. I'm just sayin'. You just know that Fred Thompson will make another appearance down the line, assuming the show is renewed.

In watching tonight's episode, I couldn't help but think that given his tendency towards negativity, the reviewer/victim Joey Conway would be a standard blogger today. It's amazing that he reviews both art and restaurants for the same paper. Does he review movies too?

At the same time, how did Joey Conway know about Tony Crane's history? Was he a critic or an investigative reporter? And how did Sam conveniently possess handcuffs when he went to confront Tony Crane unarmed? While each of these could be explained with a single spoken line, the lack of doing so makes the story seem inconsistent.

The premise of this episode was slightly similar to the pilot, in which Sam is solving a similar crime that occurred in both the future and his past. This one had a different execution and different ending. I hope the creators don't make a habit of using this plot device, or it could get old fast.

I recognize that Sam is probably going slightly haywire being caught in 1973 for what seems like months, but his behavior tonight seemed very out of character. There is no way by-the-book Sam Tyler would stalk a suspect like that. He would have been .... should have been smarter about it. Actually, the behavior of everyone on the force seemed out of character (including the suddenly by-the-book Gene Hunt), but Sam even moreso. Unless this is going to be explained in the future, it seems like sloppy writing.

Still, they sort of reverted to form during the episode. I loved how they had to keep having to rewind the tape during the confession session.

Michael Imperioli still has the best lines: "He's one Brady short of a bunch." "He's as confused as a baby at a topless bar." Classic.

Did anybody notice the Truman Capote cameo? Nice to see considering the show seems to avoid using famous faces in their history and rather uses fictional characters based on them.

Tonight's episode had some cute scenes, but overall I'd rate is as fair-to-poor. I got the theme of the complexity of the individual, but the episode didn't quite work and seemed haphazard. This show has an excellent premise at its core, but care has to be taken to keep the characters consistent. If they do change, the viewers need to know why. Unless, of course, I'm correct in my assumption of a VR scenario. In which case, it's all just a dream anyway.

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j0phus

does anyone know the name of the actress who played eve in this? I'm pretty sure its a girl I knew in San Diego.

BTW, the American show changes a lot of things, has original episodes, and sometimes combines shows. I wouldn't count on them ending the same. This is american television, c'mon.... They are going to stretch it out into a 10th season that no one is even following anymore.

February 27 2009 at 2:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gabi

Isn't this suppose to be episode 12 and not 13?? A little confusing, or am I wrong?

http://www.tv.com/life-on-mars/the-simple-secret-of-the-note-in-us-all/episode/1240065/summary.html?tag=ep_guide;ep_title;12

February 26 2009 at 12:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sgsaur

The dead "reporter" wasn't a "reviewer", he was a columnist who wrote about life in the Big Apple as he saw it.

February 26 2009 at 11:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
it-s

The reviewer is actually wrong about it being established that Sam was in a coma in the British version, so watch both shows free of any preconceived notions.

February 26 2009 at 11:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Benjh

I'm sorry it was solved today.
Picture a serial killer starting his thing in the past, and still working in the present.
Sam could help capture him, over a few episodes (that would be a nice arc), with his knowledge of the future, the serial killer not imagining it possible.
Oh well.

February 26 2009 at 4:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Benjh's comment
George

G-o-d-d-a-m-n-i-t !!!!!

I was enjoying this show all season, basking in the delicious conundrum of not knowing what's going on. Different clues almost every week, pointing in different directions, contradicting the last clue. The best mystery since Twin Peaks.

Until just now, when the asshole writer violated the rule of no spoilers until after the break.

What, you thought it wasn't a spoiler because it was about the British version?

F-U-C-K Y-O-U !!!!!!!!!!!!

February 26 2009 at 10:45 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
lawl

Thanks for spoiling the British version, you fucking asshole.

February 26 2009 at 3:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to lawl's comment
iamored8907

What does the british shows ending have to due with this show? They clearly stopped borrowing from it after the episode before the hiatus. The mini-season finale with his dad being corrupt and being shot is how the original ended. That was stated in the episode review in that episode (I believe it was episode 8 or 9.)

The show has moved in a different direction for the new series. It was stated that Sam's time travel has a more sci-fi reasoning than a logical

February 27 2009 at 12:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
DarthPaul

Yeah!
Thanks for spoiling the ending of a show that aired over 2 years ago.

By the way, the ship sinks

February 27 2009 at 1:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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