Another good show bites the dust.
Granted, I wouldn’t put “Life On Mars” on the same level as last season’s time-traveling seriees, “Journeyman,” but “Life On Mars” has (had) a stellar cast — Harvey Keitel, Jason O’Mara, Gretchen Mol, Michael Imperioli — and a great premise. It debuted to strong ratings (8.2) but in recent weeks, ratings fell to the 3.0-3.7 range, which simply aren’t good enough to justify the expensive cast and production. (Coincidentally, “Journeyman” had similar ratings at the end of its run.)
The show will complete its 17-episode freshman-season order with an episode written as a series finale, wrapping the loose story ends, explaining how Tyler was transported back in time and perhaps bringing him back to his own time.
The show was a remake of a popular U.K. series that ran just 16 episodes (as planned). U.S. networks tend to try to bleed a hit for all its worth instead of getting in and getting out. Sometimes it works (“The Office”) and in the case of “Life On Mars,” sometimes it doesn’t. It turns out that the U.S. version will run one more episode than the U.K. version, so let’s hope that the creators have ample time to wrap things up. It looks like they do.