Life on Mars Canceled, But Gets Closure

113711_d_0757_preABC has made an early announcment that the British series remake, Life on Mars, will be canceled at the conclusion of the first season. The show has been plagued with a huge loss of ratings in the second half of the season, after it moved to Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT, following Lost in what has become known as the timeslot of death. ABC’s new series, The Unusuals, will take Life on Mars time slot in April.

Network insiders said that they were fans of the show and every satisfied with the creative direction that Life on Mars took, however the low ratings simply didn’t warrant a second season. The most recent ratings had Life on Mars averaging just 2.0 rating/ 5 share among adults 18-49, a key demographic, and only 5.5 million viewers. The show was losing almost 38% of its Lost lead-in audience, and had dropped more than 40% since the first half of the season.

Life on Mars is centered around Sam Tyler, a cop from the present day who is hit by a car and wakes up in 1973. The show has danced around Sam either being crazy, in a coma and simply dreaming, as well as actually traveling to the past for some unknown reason. It was based on a BBC series with the same name.

Five more episodes of the show remain, and the early announcement by ABC allows the producers to put together a solid finale that will give fans of the show some closure on exactly what has been happening to Sam Tyler. The 17 episode first season gives the U.S. version of the show exactly one more episode than its BBC counter-part, the difference being that the British version was always only intended for 16 episodes. The U.S. version had hoped to last for several years.

Life on Mars stars Jason O’Mara, Gretchen Mol, Harvey Keitel, Michael Imperioli and Jonathan Murphy. Executive Producers are Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec and Scott Rosenberg, who already have a new ABC pilot in the works, called “Happy Town.”

The final episodes of Life on Mars are expected to air in April.

Source: Variety

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16 thoughts on “Life on Mars Canceled, But Gets Closure

  1. Sob. I really liked this show. I guess most people are more interested in reality tv, where people who shouldn’t be on tv are shoved down our throats. And Jason O’Mara looks damned good without a shirt on. I wonder what horrific claptrap they’ll shove down our throats instead? More “Two and Half Men?” God, sometimes I hate people. Wait, this show is funny and clever and you have to think? Bahh! Give me more “Wife Swap”. Grr. Maybe American Idol can be on 7 days a week instead!

    • I couldn’t agree with you more Sadie. I think cable is where we need to be searching for most of our next shows to watch. Burn Notice, for instance, has the exact same number of viewers as Life on Mars did, but Burn Notice is considered a huge success because of the network its on. Translation, the broadcast networks are turning themselves into entertainment for the mindless drones (which we all might be guilty of being at least every once in a while).

      • The big boys do seem to be suffering for it, Astro. The mindless drone thing is completely accurate but may cause even more trouble for them down the line. It seems every year the smaller networks gain more ground – better programming and more loyal viewers.

        Somewhat relatedly, Arnold Schwartzenegger’s “The Running Man” was on last night. It’s 22-years-old and, aside from the violence level – it’s pretty much smack-on in regards to the mindless reality television out there.

  2. Sob. I really liked this show. I guess most people are more interested in reality tv, where people who shouldn't be on tv are shoved down our throats. And Jason O'Mara looks damned good without a shirt on. I wonder what horrific claptrap they'll shove down our throats instead? More "Two and Half Men?" God, sometimes I hate people. Wait, this show is funny and clever and you have to think? Bahh! Give me more "Wife Swap". Grr. Maybe American Idol can be on 7 days a week instead!

    • I couldn't agree with you more Sadie. I think cable is where we need to be searching for most of our next shows to watch. Burn Notice, for instance, has the exact same number of viewers as Life on Mars did, but Burn Notice is considered a huge success because of the network its on. Translation, the broadcast networks are turning themselves into entertainment for the mindless drones (which we all might be guilty of being at least every once in a while).

      • The big boys do seem to be suffering for it, Astro. The mindless drone thing is completely accurate but may cause even more trouble for them down the line. It seems every year the smaller networks gain more ground – better programming and more loyal viewers.

        Somewhat relatedly, Arnold Schwartzenegger's "The Running Man" was on last night. It's 22-years-old and, aside from the violence level – it's pretty much smack-on in regards to the mindless reality television out there.

  3. This show had no life after one season- most of the episodes were clones of the superior (in my mind) original. After 16 or 17 shows, Sam gets used to the 70s, invests wisely, warns the Americans to get out of Iran and no one cares about how or why he got there. It was never meant to be a long running show.

    • While its certainly true that the UK version was never meant to be a long running show, the writers and producers of the US version have said absolutely that they hoped the show would run for 3 or 4 seasons at least, and that while the first episodes would closely mirror the original version, that the outcome of the series would not be the same at all. So while it did mimic the UK version, the creators had a different vision for the US.
      I never saw the BBC version, so the US version was my only view into the series. As is often the case, I think people tend to identify more with their “first” instance of something, so I would probably always feel that the US version was better for the same reasons you think the UK one is better. :)

  4. This show had no life after one season- most of the episodes were clones of the superior (in my mind) original. After 16 or 17 shows, Sam gets used to the 70s, invests wisely, warns the Americans to get out of Iran and no one cares about how or why he got there. It was never meant to be a long running show.

    • While its certainly true that the UK version was never meant to be a long running show, the writers and producers of the US version have said absolutely that they hoped the show would run for 3 or 4 seasons at least, and that while the first episodes would closely mirror the original version, that the outcome of the series would not be the same at all. So while it did mimic the UK version, the creators had a different vision for the US.

      I never saw the BBC version, so the US version was my only view into the series. As is often the case, I think people tend to identify more with their "first" instance of something, so I would probably always feel that the US version was better for the same reasons you think the UK one is better. :)

  5. Sadly, Pixie, in the US we have a Reality Network that just runs the dreck that has already aired 24 hours a day. It is really a self-feeding machine that is growing completely out of control. Okay, I get it, Networks, they are hella cheap for you to make. That is why I am am slowly, but surely, turning to cable, as so many of you have pointed out.

  6. Sadly, Pixie, in the US we have a Reality Network that just runs the dreck that has already aired 24 hours a day. It is really a self-feeding machine that is growing completely out of control. Okay, I get it, Networks, they are hella cheap for you to make. That is why I am am slowly, but surely, turning to cable, as so many of you have pointed out.

  7. The years 1973-74, I hated! Now, I don't hate Cops on mars but…I'm sick and tired of COP shows. Please, no more punishment. LOST really belongs at 10 p.m. Michael Emerson spoke the truth, 10 p.m. is best. I love LOST since day one, I am addicted holic obssessed rabies and I hope to get LOST plague and LOST zombieized. LOST is the only show I'll watch for the the rest of my life. There is NO show like LOST none can compare. LOST is beyond brilliant, beyond genius – it is Heaven sent. It's impossible for any other show to be as good. The Bible is indestructible and so is LOST. I recommend that there be a LOST spinoff, but it's going to have to be really good, even better, or just continue as is. I know lives must move on, but there are always others who'll jump at the chance to be on this great show, or one like it.

    The pain and agony of LOST s-6 being the last is too great for me. I really feel that I cannot live without LOST. That is truth. The love for LOST to me is on my list, God, Family, Friends, LOST. The end, brutha.

    Sincerely,

    Steph aka LOSTeph

  8. The years 1973-74, I hated! Now, I don’t hate Cops on mars but…I’m sick and tired of COP shows. Please, no more punishment. LOST really belongs at 10 p.m. Michael Emerson spoke the truth, 10 p.m. is best. I love LOST since day one, I am addicted holic obssessed rabies and I hope to get LOST plague and LOST zombieized. LOST is the only show I’ll watch for the the rest of my life. There is NO show like LOST none can compare. LOST is beyond brilliant, beyond genius – it is Heaven sent. It’s impossible for any other show to be as good. The Bible is indestructible and so is LOST. I recommend that there be a LOST spinoff, but it’s going to have to be really good, even better, or just continue as is. I know lives must move on, but there are always others who’ll jump at the chance to be on this great show, or one like it.

    The pain and agony of LOST s-6 being the last is too great for me. I really feel that I cannot live without LOST. That is truth. The love for LOST to me is on my list, God, Family, Friends, LOST. The end, brutha.

    Sincerely,

    Steph aka LOSTeph

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