The show Life On Mars was originally a BBC show that lasted for 2 seasons and had a Lietenant Gene Hunt spin off called Ashes to Ashes. The American version of the series produced by David E. Kelly but really follows the BBC series from episode to episode. I originally watch a pilot preview episode that certainly has been changed when producing the actual show. They moved the city from Los Angeles to New York and they changed Lietenant Gene Hunt from Colm Meaney to Harvey Keitel.
After seeing the initial pilot I would have suggested changing Jason O'Mara as Sam Tyler and asking John Simms to come over the pond and play the role again. Simms did a fantastic job in the role on the BBC and he also was great on Doctor Who for a 3 episode deal as well. The man has talent and would have been great. I think O'Mara lacks the personality to play the role and is trying to fill some big shoes.
Life on Mars is about a detective, in current time, is working a case and ends up getting hit by a car, and wakes up in 1973 with the skills and memory of 2008. So the big question, is he really in 1973 or a coma and just creating all these stories in his head. It's a great concept and it's funny when he starts talking about forencics and they haven't been created yet. So he throws some new ideas into the mix and needs to figure out how to adjust to being back in time.
I liked the original series a lot and really wish it would have taken off and continued on BBC. So my hope is that the characters grow on me and they make the American version a big hit. There's always the possibility that they will spin Lietenant Gene Hunt off to Ashes to Ashes, but I'd rather see them try to salvage the show and keep going with it. I also hope that they don't continue to use the exact same stories as the original show, but change it up and make create their own path.
It will be interesting to see how Harvey Keitel does as I did really like Colm Meaney as Lietenant Gene Hunt.
I'll probably add more when I see the new version of the pilot. I hope it's as good as the last one.