For those that have been living on another planet, this is not only a song by David Bowie, but also a TV Series on the BBC. It's the story of a detective Sam Tyler from Manchester, who gets clobbered by a car and wakes up in 1973. Now to start off with, you wondered if he's really travelled in time. But as the series unfolded, it became apparent it's really a very elaborate dream and he's really in a coma. The characters highlight how badly controlled policing was in the early 1970s, and why such cases as the Birmingham six got carried to court and convicted. Now Sam's boss, Gene Hunt, is vaguely reminiscent of Jack Regan from "The Sweeney." He's always eating cholesterol sandwiches, roughing up people to get convictions, and generally not acting like a DCI should. He also drives a truly momentous Ford Cortina, with the usual disregard for other road users. Now, Gene Hunt is an entire library of funny quotes. Last night I found myself gaffawing as he said "She's as nervous as a small nun at a penguin shoot." He then within seconds said "this is going as slow as a spastic in a magnet factory." I nearly passed out. Last week the BBC excelled themselves by making a remake of Camberwick Green, a stop-motion animation children's programme from 1966. Only this time they made it out of Life on Mars.
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