List of Life on Mars (U.S. TV series) episodes

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This is an episode list for the US version of the television show Life on Mars. This is a US remake of the BBC show also entitled Life on Mars.

Originally 13 episodes were commissioned for the first season after the first failed pilot. ABC announced on November 20, 2008 that 4 more episodes had been commissioned, bringing the total number of episodes for the first season to 17. The first season went on hiatus over Christmas after the seventh episode, "The Man Who Sold the World", with a cliffhanger ending. When the series returned, the episode concluding the cliffhanger (the eighth episode, "The Dark Side of the Moon") was aired second, after "Take A Look At The Lawmen" (chronologically the eleventh episode[1]).

On March 2, 2009, it was announced that ABC would not be ordering a second season, cancelling the series. The decision was made early in order to give the producers enough time to wrap up the show's storyline.[2] The final episode, "Life Is a Rock", aired on April 1, 2009.


No. in
Title Directed by Written by Original air date Production
1 1 "Out Here in the Fields" Gary Fleder Josh Appelbaum & André Nemec & Scott Rosenberg October 9, 2008 (2008-10-09) 1ANY01
After an accident, NYPD detective Sam Tyler inexplicably finds himself back in 1973, where he must help solve a murder that is eerily similar to a case he was investigating in 2008. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 1 of UK original)
2 2 "The Real Adventures of the Unreal Sam Tyler" Michael Katleman Bryan Oh October 16, 2008 (2008-10-16) 1ANY02
Sam is in 1973. 2008 only exists as flashes of Sam's memory, assisted by a mysterious robot. A suspect in a series of deadly armed robberies of check cashing stores, Trent, is picked up but let loose for lack of evidence. Trent then attempts another robbery, is killed by Hunt, but not before Trent shoots June the precinct secretary, at the scene. When a witness states that Trent was escorted by uniformed police going into the store being robbed, it becomes a corruption issue. It turns out June was connected to Trent, and this is how the case gets solved. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 2 of UK original)
3 3 "My Maharishi Is Bigger Than Your Maharishi" Michael Pressman Tracy McMillan October 23, 2008 (2008-10-23) 1ANY03
When a decorated Vietnam War vet is beaten to death, Sam's precinct is pushed to the brink to find his killers, but not everyone may be happy with the results they find. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 5 of UK original)
4 4 "Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing in the Shadows?" Alex Zakrzewski David Wilcox October 30, 2008 (2008-10-30) 1ANY04
Sam busts a guy for accosting his mother, only to find out he's a loan shark and she's into him for a thousand dollars. When his mother doesn't want to prosecute, she, unknowingly, leads Sam down a road that puts him on the outs with Annie. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 4 of UK original)
5 5 "Things to Do in New York When You Think You're Dead" Michael Katleman Sonny Postiglione November 6, 2008 (2008-11-06) 1ANY05
Sam partners up with Fletcher, his future police mentor, in 1973 to find a Puerto Rican man accused of throwing a black girl off the roof of a building — a case that has the black community up in arms and demanding retribution. Guest stars Whoopi Goldberg. (Contains elements of Series 2 Episode 2 of UK original)
6 6 "Tuesday's Dead" Daniel Minahan Adele Lim November 13, 2008 (2008-11-13) 1ANY06
After a wild birthday party for Ray at the precinct house, Sam receives a phone call from his mother saying he has until two o'clock to pull out of his coma before the doctor will pull the plug, just as Lt. Hunt walks in with news of a hostage situation at a local hospital, they have until two o'clock before the man claims he will kill the hostage. Sam believes he must intervene to save his own life in 2008 and vows that no one will die today. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 6 of UK original)
7 7 "The Man Who Sold the World" Darnell Martin Meredith Averill & Phil M. Rosenberg November 20, 2008 (2008-11-20) 1ANY07
While investigating a child's kidnapping, Sam discovers some disturbing information about his father, as well as the real reason he disappeared for good on the day of Sam's fourth birthday party. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 8 of UK original)
8 8 "Take a Look At the Lawmen" Brad Turner Sonny Postiglione & David Wilcox January 28, 2009 (2009-01-28) 1ANY11
A long standing competition between Lt. Hunt and Anthony Nunzio of the 144th precinct, heats up as both investigate a bank robbery by the Russian mob. Meanwhile, Sam has a liaison in the file room, unaware of the woman (Maggie Siff)'s true identity. This episode was originally broadcast before "The Dark Side of the Mook." (Contains elements of Series 2 Episode 5 of UK original)
9 9 "The Dark Side of the Moon" Rick Rosenthal Bryan Oh & Tracy McMillan February 4, 2009 (2009-02-04) 1ANY08
A mysterious phone call from a tipster leads Det. Sam Tyler to a headless body. A severed head is delivered to the precinct at the same time, thus leading to the discovery of a series of gruesome decapitations that might involve Det. Carling's brother, Eddie. The detectives are interviewed by someone tied to Aries Project. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 3 of UK original)
10 10 "Let All the Children Boogie" Michael Katleman Phil M. Rosenberg February 11, 2009 (2009-02-11) 1ANY12
When rock star Sebastian Grace (Cheyenne Jackson) receives a death threat, Sam and Chris are sent to provide him with police protection. Chris later accompanies Sebastian and one of his groupies, Rocket Girl, to wait for UFOs in the New Jersey Meadowlands, but Sebastian is arrested for murder when Rocket Girl disappears. Sam also has to try and cover up his fling with Maria before Gene figures out who his partner in the file room was.
11 11 "Home Is Where You Hang Your Holster" David M. Barrett Meredith Averill February 18, 2009 (2009-02-18) 1ANY13
A city councilman who is arrested and brought into the 125th on prostitution charges privately reveals to Sam that he's from 2009 and knows the way home, but he is murdered in the middle of the precinct house before Sam can find out the secret. Hunt locks down the squad house to investigate the murder. Ray and Annie were both out of the house at the time and are sent out to investigate leads on the outside, but squabble over how much authority a policewoman should be given in investigating a crime. (Contains elements of Series 1 Episode 7 of UK original)
12 12 "The Simple Secret of the Note in Us All" Jean de Segonzac Becky Hartman Edwards & Adele Lim February 25, 2009 (2009-02-25) 1ANY10

The squad tries to solve the murder of newspaper columnist Joey Conway. After learning that Conway had visited a gallery owned by Tony Crane, a man whom Sam has arrested in the 2000s for a very similar crime, Sam becomes an advocate for the 1973-style vigilante policing he's usually fighting against, while the media glare has Hunt uncharacteristically insistent on a strictly by-the-book investigation. The rest of the precinct believe the murderer is a restaurant owner whose business was failing because of a bad review in Conway's column.

Note: This is the last episode to air before the shows's cancellation. (Contains elements of Series 2 Episode 1 of UK original)
13 13 "Revenge of Broken Jaw" Stephen Kay David Wilcox & Meredith Averill March 4, 2009 (2009-03-04) 1ANY09
While the squad tries to find a place to watch the Muhammad Ali-Ken Norton rematch, student radicals from the Weather Underground target the police with bomb threats, and it becomes all too personal to Lt. Hunt, who loses several close friends in the incendiary aftermath. As the investigation heats up, Sam, Annie and Hunt uncover mysterious connections to one of the students and a political science professor. The bomb threats continue as Hunt, suspiciously secretive, attempts to discover the professor's possible connection to the Weather Underground's dead leader; is the motivation politics or revenge, and do the Weathermen have the right target? With the 1-2-5 walking a dangerous tightrope to discover the target of the next bomb, the case takes a totally unforeseen but deadly turn. (Contains elements of Series 2 Episode 3 of UK original and Series 1 Episode 8 of "Ashes to Ashes")
14 14 "Coffee, Tea, or Annie" David Petrarca Adele Lim & Bryan Oh March 11, 2009 (2009-03-11) 1ANY14
When a Pan Atlantic air hostess turns up dead, Annie volunteers for a dangerous undercover mission posing as the murdered woman to help solve the second in a possible series of brutal homicides. Then, after an unlikely suspect is uncovered, an invitation to a lurid swingers' party leads to an evening full of sensational surprises — not just for Annie and Sam (who attend as a couple) but Lieutenant Hunt also, who arrives with a special guest to mix it up. Juicy sexual escapades bring the swingers' party to a fever pitch, but will the murderer be revealed? Finally, Annie confronts Hunt with the courage of her convictions about her future at the 1-2-5. (Contains elements of Series 2 Episode 4 of UK original)
15 15 "All the Young Dudes" Darnell Martin Sonny Postiglione & Tracy McMillan March 18, 2006 (2006-03-18) 1ANY15
When Sam poses as a streetwise tough to infiltrate a vicious New York City gang led by Irishman Jimmy McManus who is suspected of truck hijackings, he’s pushed to the limit not to blow his cover, and he reveals a much darker side. A bare-knuckled fist fight with a gang member, a late-night deal to buy a truckload of stolen VCRs and even time behind bars at his own precinct are all necessary elements of Sam’s scam. But can he keep up the ruse when he’s told to shoot a bound-and-gagged woman? And his attraction to McManus' sister also seems to be part of a recipe for disaster. Jason O'Mara's real life wife, Paige Turco, plays his romantic interest. (Contains elements of Series 2 Episode 8 of UK original)
16 16 "Everyone Knows It's Windy" Alex Zakrzewski Mike Flynn March 25, 2009 (2009-03-25) 1ANY16
Following Irish gangster Jimmy McManus' shooting of Ray and Chris, crime fighting gets extremely personal at the 125th Precinct. When McManus is subsequently murdered outside a neighborhood bar and FBI agent Franklin Morgan is sent to the precinct, both sides of the law suspect Sam of murder, leaving him to question his own innocence. With the evidence stacking up against him, Sam must rely on his friends at the precinct to bend the rules as he tenaciously searches for the real killer. (Contains elements of Series 2 Episode 7 of UK original)
17 17 "Life Is a Rock" Michael Katleman Scott Rosenberg April 1, 2009 (2009-04-01) 1ANY17
Sam wakes up after dreaming about his 2008 apartment with 1973 characters and is told by his hippie neighbor Windy that he's most likely closer to going back; later on a mysterious caller offers Sam a chance to return to 2008; all he needs to do is complete three tasks, but a confusing set of circumstances inside and out of the 1-2-5 makes him think twice about whether he even wants to go back. At the end of the episode, the final truth about Sam's life is revealed.


# Episode Rating Share Rating/Share
1 "Out Here in the Fields" 8.2 14 3.8/10 11.33 3
2 "The Real Adventures of the Unreal Sam Tyler" 5.7 10 2.7/7 8.47 8
3 "My Maharishi is Bigger Than Your Maharishi" TBA 9 2.5/7 8.06 11
4 "Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing In the Shadows?" 5.7 10 2.7/8 8.41 8
5 "Things to Do in New York When You Think You're Dead" 6.0 10 3.0/8 9.62 8
6 "Tuesday's Dead" 6.0 10 2.9/8 8.94 8
7 "The Man Who Sold the World" 5.3 9 2.6/7 7.97 9
8 "Take a Look at the Lawmen" 4.0 7 2.3/6 8.89 7
9 "The Dark Side of the Moon" 3.7 6 2.3/5 6.02 5
10 "Let All the Children Boogie" 3.0 5 2.0/6 5.14 TBA
11 "Home is Where You Hang Your Holster" 3.5 6 2.1/6 5.78 7
12 "The Simple Secret of The Note In Us All" 3.2 5 2.0/6 5.55 8
13 "Revenge of Broken Jaw" 3.5 6 2.1/6 5.66 6
14 "Coffee, Tea, or Annie" 3.0 4 1.5/4 4.58 13
15 "All the Young Dudes" 3.3 6 2.0/6 5.27 11
16 "Everyone Knows It's Windy" 3.5 6 2.1/6 5.67 8
17 "Life Is a Rock" 3.6 6 2.1/6 5.86 7


  1. ^ "LIFE ON MARS (INTERNATIONAL ONLY)". 20th Century Fox Television. Retrieved October 1, 2010. 
  2. ^ "Life on Mars: ABC TV Show Cancelled, No Season Two". March 3, 2009. Retrieved April 26, 2010. 

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