Life on Mars

Posted: February 6, 2009 in Uncategorized
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I’ve been enjoying Life on Mars.

No, I’m not on vacation.  It’s a TV show on ABC.

I’m not a huge fan of network TV.  The few shows that I watch on a regular basis are on HBO or Showtime, although I’m not a snob about it… I’m not discriminating in my tastes and will watch pretty much anything — CSI, Lost, any kind of cheesy crime stuff on TruTV — but if I miss an episode I don’t feel like I missed anything. 

Life on Mars is an exception.  The premise is that a modern day NYPD cop has an accident and is transported (by methods so far unexplained) back to 1973.

They’ve nailed the look and feel of the era perfectly — trust me, I was there.  The show is shot in a warm harvest-gold tint, which makes me feel all warm inside.  The style is right on retro-solid, Jackson:  haircuts (or lack thereof,) clothes (miles of brown leather trench coats, double-breasted suits, wide ties, earthtones up the wazoo) and the music.  Especially the music.

They’ve avoided the big hits for the most part and have chosen quality tunes from the era’s semi-popular and somewhat obscure. Example: “My Maria” by B. W. Stephenson.  It was a top 10 hit but I hadn’t heard it in years. 

This approach is similar to the soundtrack of “Boogie Nights,” which re-exposed a slew of great music from the other end of the 70s.

I went to the official Life on Mars website, and they even have Life on Mars Radio

Harvey Keitel and Michael Imperioli add an air of impending violence, although it’s often delivered as a punchline. 

Sam, the time-warped detective protagonist, is of course trying to figure out how to get his ass back to 2009, but if he had any brains he’d shack up with the blonde and buy some shares of IBM and Microsoft etc. and hang onto ’em until 2000. Technorati Tags: , , ,

  1. The show looks fun, but I barely have time to watch the ones I already like! It’s a horrible side effect of sharing the remote.

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