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
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.