Wednesday, November 11, 2009

"Upstairs inside, downstairs outside" is not as filthy as it sounds

A couple of days ago I finished watching both the American version of Life on Mars and the second season of Ashes to Ashes. Mental time travel is so much fun! I really like the original Life on Mars, so when I heard they're going to do an American version it kinda made me want to barf, which is why I put off watching it for so long. The first few episodes were pretty painful to watch. It was like they took a bunch of pretty American actors and forced them reenact scenes from the original show, only with a New-York accent and less acting talent. The American Sam Tyler looked way too handsome, and Harvey Keitel seemed way too old to play Gene Hunt. I mean, he's friggin 70 years old! A policeman his age would've been retired years ago! I'm also pretty sure that the BBC Gene Hunt isn't Jewish. The thing is, after a few boring episodes (at least for someone who's watched the BBC series a bunch of times) the storyline actually got sort of interesting, and I started to really enjoy all those little new additions to the basic plot, even the seemingly unnecessary CGI Red Rovers. I like it how it dares to go places that the BBC show took over three years to get to, like having Sam interact with other people from his own time, more or less. And Gretchen Mol is so adorable! She looks almost exactly like she did in The Thirteenth Floor, and that was like ten years ago. She's almost as sweet looking as Liz White, the original Annie Cartwright. Ms. White looked so cute in her little police chick outfit I just wanted to gauge my eyes out. It's a shame that the American version was canceled so soon, but the very weird ending sort of makes up for it. It completely differs from the BBC concept of what the world of Life on Mars really is, taking it to a whole other genre, and the final shot is absolutely perfect.

Ashes to Ashes is more like the original Life on Mars, but it's also pretty different, primarily because it takes place in the early '80s instead of 1973, and because it centers around a female character, played by the lovely Keeley Hawes. Most of the time it looks like they're trying their best to make her look as silly as possible, but I guess that's how women used to dress back then. As hot as Ms. Hawes may be, I still find it pretty difficult to be attracted to women who are dressed in a style that reminds me of the way my mom used to dress when I was a kid. Gene and Chris and Ray are still here from the original show, and I don't use any of the actors' names because I firmly believe that these three characters are completely real and I refuse to admit otherwise. The fresh faced Montserrat Lombard is also pretty adorable as Shaz, the fresh faced adorable police chick. Season two ended in a pretty unsettling scene, in which the 1982 reality invades the present instead of the other way around, so the third season, which is being filmed these days, should be pretty interesting.

Keeley Hawes, aka Bolly Knickers

There's a series of "artistic" black and white photos of Keeley Hawes you can find online, in which she's not wearing much of anything. Gawd bless her dear heart for being so young and frivolous. If more women were like that I wouldn't have to spend so much time torturing myself by wondering what Michelle Ryan looks like naked. Yeah, I've started watching the cancelled 2007 remake of The Bionic Woman. Sigh.

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