TV Draft Round 7 – Pick 4 – Max Selects – Life On Mars

One of the reasons I started to blog in the first place back in 2017 was to tell people about this British show. The storyline is perfect for me. Life On Mars was made in 2006-2007 so for me, this is brand new! This one caught my attention immediately. The series only has 16 episodes total so it doesn’t take a lot of your time. Unlike America…they don’t usually milk a program to its last drop. 

If any of you are looking for something different…watch it! 

This is the show I most wanted to post about other than the Twilight Zone. It has Time Travel and the early seventies…whats not to like?

Life on Mars is simply great. I’m talking about the BBC original version… NOT the American version. Sometimes I wonder why instead of remaking a series as great as this… why not just show the superior British version in America in prime time? Do they think that it would be impossible for people to understand British accents? Why remake something that is inferior to the original?

The plot is about a police officer (Sam Tyler) in 2006 who gets hit by a car and wakes up in 1973…he doesn’t know if he has traveled through time, gone mad, or is in a coma. When he wakes he is a cop (Detective Inspector) in 1973 and has to deal with a non PC world that is vastly different from where he just came from… People do things with feel more than data gathering etc.

Same begins to understand that the modern world he came from didn’t have everything right. There is room for hunches and gut feelings. Gene sees that some of Sam’s ways work well on cases. The continue to learn from each other but it takes a while. Gene is not above framing a guilty man with little evidence while Sam pleads with him not to. Sam also learns to trust his inner instinct instead of just by the numbers police work. 

Sam had grown up in that neighborhood and he meets his mother and father but of course, they don’t see him as their son…he was only 4 years old at that time. None of the characters know he is from 2006. He only tells one person…Annie Cartwright and she doesn’t believe him. She thinks he received a concussion and this is a side effect. When Sam watches TV by himself…sometimes the people on a show will know who he is and try to communicate. The famous UK Test Card Girl will also come to life. 

They get the era down almost perfectly. The soundtrack is outstanding. The song in which the show is named is my favorite David Bowie song. I found music in this show that I had never known about…like Atomic Rooster’s  The Devil’s Answer…just to pick out one. It has one of the best soundtracks I’ve heard. Plus I never get tired of hearing the title track. 

They asked Paul McCartney if they could use Live and Let Die and he flatly refused. They sent him a few episodes to look at…he agreed instantly after that. The sequence to Live and Let Die is great. This show borrowed heavily from the UK 1970s Cop show The Sweeney…which is a great show itself. 

They made a sequel later on called Ashes To Ashes about a modern female police officer that gets trapped in the 80s with an older version of the original characters except for Sam and Annie. I would recommend watching that one also. I know of two bloggers (Hanspostcard and Lisa) who have watched this show because I recommended it…they both seemed to have liked it. Just DONT get the American version…it’s very cheesy and ends bad.

You can watch this show on Amazon Prime. 

For fans of the show… this was announced in March of 2022.

Life on Mars co-creator Matthew Graham has confirmed that he and his longtime collaborator Ashley Pharoah have scripted the pilot episode to a proposed sequel series.

News broke in 2020 that the team were developing a follow-up titled Lazarus, which would tie up the story that began in Life on Mars and continued in Ashes to Ashes.

The Characters are:

Gene Hunt

Chief Inspector Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister): – One of the best tv characters…EVER. Politically Incorrect to the core but a decent human being although he doesn’t always show it. He is Sam’s superior and although he won’t admit it much…he does respect Sam and Sam begrudgingly respects him. He does police work the old way…by feeling and hunches and it irritates Sam to no end. One of my favorite lines by him is “You are surrounded by armed bastards.” and “Your son, Mrs Bathurst, was a cold-hearted killer. And if there is a hell, he’s going there to be poked up the arse with sharp fiery sticks, forever and ever, Amen!”

The interplay between Gene Hunt and his crew is great:

Gene Hunt: “I think you’ve forgotten who you’re talking to.”
Sam Tyler: “An overweight, over-the-hill, nicotine-stained, borderline-alcoholic homophobe with a superiority complex and an unhealthy obsession with male bonding?”
Gene Hunt: “You make that sound like a bad thing.”

Chris Skelton: “I wonder what killed him?”
Gene Hunt: “That would be the bloody enormous hole in his chest where the bullet went in!”

Sam Tyler

Sam Tyler (John Simm): A modern man stuck in 1973 and he must work on police cases without a computer or data. He learns from Gene also…he doesn’t want to admit it but he finds out that the old hunches work out at times more than the data gathering. Both Sam and Gene need each other and when they are not fighting…they compliment each other rather well.

Annie Cartwright

Annie Cartwright (Liz White): A female in police at a time where women were often ignored, underused, undermined, and taken for granted. Annie is a bright woman, she studied for a psychology degree, wants to help people, deals with sexism well, has to be wary of what she says in front of the men, and leaves the situation otherwise she may get sacked. She slowly gets accepted by the team as a detective and helps solve a lot of cases. She ended up being one of my favorite characters. 

Ray Carling

Ray Carling (Dean Andrews): Ray is a tough-minded man who prefers brutality and corruption to do things Sam’s way. He is the one against Sam the most. Carling had applied for promotion to DI (Detective Inspector) that Sam got.

Chris Skelton

Chris Skelton (Marshall Lancaster): Chris is extremely naive and is learning on the job. He is generally regarded as a waste of space by Hunt throughout both series and plays only minor roles in the storylines that unfold. Skelton finally proves himself by saving Hunt, Tyler, and Annie Cartwright from death when he shoots and kills a criminal at point-blank range.

Here are some clips…the bottom three are short. 


TV Draft Round 5 – Pick 6 – Max Selects – The Andy Griffith Show

Welcome to the Hanspostcard TV Draft. I hope you will enjoy it! Today’s post was written by Max at

There has been so much written about this show and the writing will never stop. It was a show about the quirky citizens of a fictional town called Mayberry. The Andy Griffith Show is not just another show. The series will be around long after we are gone and still being discovered by future generations.

Some of the love I have for the show is about escapism. The low pressure of living in Mayberry is attractive. A place where you are allowed to live slowly and friends are only a few miles away. Nowadays our lives are so full of technology and rush that it would be tempting to walk through the screen to join Andy and Opie fishing out on Meyers Lake.


Mayberry was based on a small North Carolina town called Mount Airey where Andy grew up. Griffith has also said that although the show was in the sixties, Mayberry had a 1930s-1940s feel to it. When I’m asked where I grew up, I’ll say in a town kind of like Mayberry and they get what I’m saying.

The episode that best explains the show is… Man In A Hurry. A businessman’s car breaks down two miles from Mayberry on a Sunday. He has a business appointment in Charlotte the next morning. He walks to town and finds it deserted until church lets out. The garage is also closed on Sunday. Gomer is working but can only pump gas and Wally refuses to repair the car until Monday. The stranger can’t believe the pace of life in Mayberry and everyone’s lack of urgency. Andy tries to talk him into spending the night and getting the car fixed on Monday… he won’t have any of this non-sense… first but then he slowly realizes what great lives these people lead and ends up staying a little while longer than he could have.

Andy Griffith and Don Knotts were a great comedy team. I wish they would have made a few movies together. Knotts wanted to do that but Griffith always backed away from it. You can put them up there with other great comedy teams. Andy was a great straight man and Don played off of him well.

I’ve seen parents play episodes to their kids for lessons, schools play episodes for students, and heard of preachers writing sermons around episodes. The humor wasn’t dirty but it wasn’t sterile either. Most if not all of the first 5 season episodes are classics. It’s a show that you can catch at any time. During a rainout, between movies, and a binge-watch.


The show offered a little of everything… One of the things I liked was the bluegrass music of The Dillards who appeared on the show as the Darlings. Denver Pyle played Briscoe Darling Jr. and played the jug with the Dillards. They were and STILL are a bluegrass band that tours and releases albums.

Andy had many girlfriends throughout the show. There was Ellie and she gave Andy all he could handle. Ellie, unfortunately, left after the first season. He saw the county nurse Mary Simpson (My favorite), Peggy McMillian, and then he met Helen Crump. Personally, I never liked Helen as much. Her nickname from some fans was Helen Grump because she could be a grump quite often. Andy ended up marrying Helen in the last season.

Thelma Lou was one of my favorite characters of the show. She put up with Barney’s shenanigans but was always there for him. Barney was foolish for letting her go but they finally got married. It didn’t happen on the show’s original run but they finally tied the knot in the reunion movie.

Aunt Bee

Then there was Aunt Bee Taylor. She took care of Andy and Opie and made sure they were fed well and came home to a clean house. Aunt Bee had a smile for everyone unless you got on her bad side. She could be stubborn and formidable when angered and she commanded the utmost respect from everyone. She was in a way, everyone’s Aunt.

Gomer and Goober

The two characters from Wally’s gas station were Gomer Pyle and Goober. Goober was a great mechanic and Gomer mostly filled your tank up with a story to go along with it. They were not the sharpest tools in the shed but both had hearts of gold and added to the show’s comedy.


Andy’s son from his only marriage was Opie Taylor. You never found out how Opie’s mother passed away but she did before we got to meet the Taylors. Opie is a super kid and Andy raised him the right way. He is kind and polite and when he does something wrong he usually had the sense to recognize that and correct the problem.

Otis Campbell

Otis Campbell… Otis was a good guy with only one problem. He was the town drunk. Andy and Barney knew him so well that they let Otis grab the jail key and let himself in when he was a bit intoxicated. During the reunion movie made in the 80s, he had given up the booze and was selling ice cream.

Seasons 1-5 were in Black and White with Don Knotts as Barney Fife. Don’s last season was the 5th season and seasons 6-8 were in color.  I have all of the Griffith Show episodes but I will admit…I don’t really watch the color episodes as much as the black and white ones. Yes, there are some good later episodes but it’s Andy. He walks around Mayberry like he is owed money. Andy later admitted on many of the later episodes he was going through the motions.

He started to get a little tenser on screen in the 5th season but Barney was still there and kept things light. In the 6th season with Barney gone, Andy acted impatient with his fellow quirky citizens where at one time he enjoyed them. The show just changed dramatically with color. It remained at number 1 but it just wasn’t the same.

It was one of the most successful television shows ever. The Series went out on top and had a successful spinoff called Mayberry RFD.

In the early 70s Mayberry RFD and other shows such as  The Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres, Mister Ed, Lassie, Petticoat Junction, and Hee Haw were canceled because of the rural purge the network did… everything that had a tree got canceled it seemed. More important shows were coming like All In The Family and others but there was always room for others. In syndication these shows do great.

So follow me to Mayberry and don’t look back.