Saturday, January 30, 2010

Psych on Mars

The problem with the American "Life on Mars" crystallised itself recently when I saw an episode in which Sam visits a police psychiatrist. In 1973. The problem is that American policing hasn't changed to the extent that British policing has. Whereas in a British context, a police psychiatrist in 1973 seems unthinkable, there it's natural; having Annie act as a real police officer rather than a glorified tea-lady is fine, even expected, for the Americans (what with their Charlie's Angels and all) but not for the Mancunians. In the British version, nobody except Sam follows correct forensic procedure; in the American version, Sam only comes across as strange if he blurts out something about obtaining DNA. So basically, it's hamstrung from the start. Still, gets some good lines in, and their Ray is better than ours.