Season 1 was the first and only season of the short-lived American version of the British TV series Life on Mars. It was shown first in the USA and later in the UK. Some fans of the English version of Life on Mars, considered the ending to be something of a flop and disappointment. The series basically tells the same story: Sam Tyler is hit by a car and ends up somehow back in 1973 and he thinks that by working out the reason why, he can return home to the modern day. Whereas in the original English version, Sam lives in the city of Manchester, in 2006, the location for the US series is New York City, 2008. And as in the English version, Sam originally worked for the Greater Manchester Police. Although once back in time, Sam ends up working for Manchester and Salford Police (which by the 1980s had become the GMP). In the American version of Life on Mars, Sam is working for the New York City Police Department. Even though his boss is still Gene Hunt, the character is a police Lieutenant, the equivalent of the Detective Chief Inspector rank used by British police officers. Gene also has a daughter, who ends up having sex with Sam in one episode. In Ashes to Ashes, the sequel to the British series of Life on Mars, Hunt is divorced. Several of the other character characters appear in this version. Annie Cartwright's English counterpart is Annie Norris, who is a female officer working in a man's world. In the finale, she is promoted to Detective. Ray Carling also appears too; although he is married in this version, whereas in the English version he is single. Chris Skelton is played by Jonathan Murphy and has the middle name of Gordon. Sam's girlfriend in the present day is Maya Roy in the original version but in this series, her surname is Daniels. She also says goodbye to Sam, ending their relationship as she thinks he will never wake up. Sam Tyler's mother is Rose Tyler whereas in the original Life on Mars she is called Ruth. Windy is the female equivalent of barman Nelson, the barman of the Railway Arms. A lot of changes have been made in the American version of Life on Mars as the US makers thought that the English version wasn't extreme enough and the ending is also different. Yet both endings to that and its English counterpart and sequel Ashes to Ashes blend the mixtures of fantasy and real-life. The ending of the second series of the UK Life on Mars saw Sam choose to go back to 1973 to save Hunt and the rest of the team during a robbery heist. They later drive off into the sunset in Gene's Ford Cortina. However, it is revealed that in Ashes to Ashes and Life on Mars, the team were dead all along, along with Hunt himself and had come from different time eras also This ending was less well received by the English viewers as it is revealed that Tyler is Gene Hunt's son and that they are also on a spaceship to Mars. English viewers hoped that the overall ending to Ashes to Ashes would be a lot better and would be just as good as the original UK series.

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