Ashes To Ashes Series Finale - Series 3, Episode 8 - Episode review

It's done. Ashes To Ashes, and by extension Life On Mars, wrapped up not half an hour ago. And to coin a cliché, there was not a dry eye in the house. The questions that have dogged viewers through five series' were mostly answered, and the identity of the mercurial Gene Hunt finally revealed.

Although the writers still managed to squeeze in a 'crime of the week' format right to the end, it was barely important. Quite rightly too. There were far more important matters to be dealt with.

Let's flip straight to Alex Drake standing in the middle of a field, staring at a scarecrow. The scarecrow is wearing a jacket with the badge number 6620. Even though Gene Hunt appear behind her, Drake starts to dig into the shallow grave and initially believes the remains inside to be Sam Tyler. But they're not. An ID inside the jacket reveals the bones belong to Gene Hunt himself.

But from the moment Hunt pulls a gun on Drake in that field, you know he knows the game is up. The look on Philip Glenister's face is one of pure defeat, and it's a look Gene Hunt's never worn before. They go to the nearby abandoned house to talk, and the details begin to spill out. Hunt died as a rookie policeman and continued as a ghost in this purgatorial world. (We talked about the possibility of this in our Who Is Gene Hunt post.)

But out of the shadows, Jim Keats appears and mocks Hunt while trying to bring Drake over to his side. They all return to CID together in the same car with Keats being irritating and provocative the whole way. Glenister, Keeley Hawes and Daniel Mays were brilliant throughout those scenes, singling out Hawes for her devastation whenever she discovered whose corpse was in the grave. That single tear said everything.

Back in the CID room though, Carling, Skelton and Granger have all watched the videos that Keats left for them. The lead-up to this was impressive - the whistles that Skelton has been hearing, the long history of Carling's obsession with the army and Shaz's fear of screwdrivers. Seriously, remember when she freaked out at a workman in CID for leaving a tool on her desk? All clues, my friends.

Those videos reveal the truth of what happened to the three cops: Carling kills himself after beating a kid to death in frustration about his army career. Skelton was a rookie officer who got shot in the line of duty (perhaps why Hunt has always been harder on Chris than anyone else?), and Shaz was stabbed when she caught a guy trying to break into a car...with a screwdriver. The only slight disappointment is that it's never explained how Keats got the videos. How do you get a video of something from another reality?

Anyway, when Keats eventually sucker punches (or headbutts) Hunt into the CID room, the three are not exactly Gene's greatest fans. Keats rants and rages like a man possessed, and I have to give Daniel Mays for his manic, demonic performance throughout the finale. The mask of concerned colleague slipped once and for all, and he was for all intents and purposes the agent of evil. (They do say that Keats has been reporting to "Nick" throughout the show - a reference to the devil?)

All this talk of Satan has a bit more relevance when Keats takes Ray, Chris and Shaz to another police department. His best offer: come and work with me. Same reality, same purgatory, slimier boss? But he takes them to an elevator which is going down. Is this symbolic, or are they really going to hell?

Still, Alex manages to encourage a deflated Gene Hunt into making one last stand. They make contact with Carling, Skelton and Granger, but only Shaz shows up to work with them. They intercept the Dutch criminals, but the Quatro gets shot to pieces. Mission complete, they decide to go for a pint. Not to Luigi's this time, they end up outside the Railway Arms and are greeted by Nelson the landlord.

And somehow we know - by going into the pub, each character will end their time in Hunt's purgatory. Chris and Shaz share a brief romantic moment before convincing Ray to come inside with them. And this part is the most heartbreaking - Drake realises that she's never going home to Molly, that this is the end for her. Gene reassures her that Molly will be fine in the end, and the two kiss before Alex goes inside the pub.

Hunt continues

Sorry for the extended recap, folks. Almost every moment of tonight's Ashes To Ashes was filled with poignant scenes. Perhaps the most pertinent thing is that while his colleagues 'pass on', Hunt chooses to stay in his world. After all, he's been banging on about how "This place is mine. You lot belong to me."

There are hints at a higher plan for Gene. By the time he gets back to CID, there's a brochure for the new model Mercedes on his desk. Now, how did that get there? And no sooner does he start flicking through the brochure than a man walks into the office asking for his iPhone back. Yes, Hunt's going to be there for all the lost souls for a long time to come. And that's strangely reassuring.

Even if we'll never get to see it, it's kind of nice to know that Gene Hunt's story will carry on.

Brave endings?

It was refreshing to see that the writers didn't cop out (pun unintended) and have Alex wake up from her coma. She has a brief flash of herself in the end, in her hospital bed, but she realises that time is stuck for her. She's not going anywhere.

In perhaps one of the most emotional scenes, Alex realises she won't be reunited with her daughter. It would have been easy for the whole thing to end with Alex sitting up in bed - Sam Tyler escaped from Hunt's world once, didn't he? I was far more satisfied with the more uncomfortable reality of Alex moving on and Gene staying behind. We've talked on Shout about them ending up as a couple - I think we'll be glad they shared a kiss, but the ending had more substance by avoiding schmaltzy scenes.

Quotes from the Ashes To Ashes finale

This list is very incomplete. If you've got any suggestions for quotes that I've missed, drop me a comment and I'll include it here!

  • Hunt: "This place is mine. You lot belong to me. Not Drake. Not Keats."
  • Drake: "I didn't take this world seriously then. I do now."
  • Carling: "That new Skip creeps me out. He doesn't even get horny over a sawn-off."
  • Shaz scared of a screwdriver. Someone salutes Ray. Chris hears a whistle.
  • Hunt: "In here he's not some snotty kid in a uniform. Oh no, he's Gary Cooper in High Noon. He's the law."
  • Drake: "Why didn't you tell me? All your swagger and your bullshit."
  • Hunt acknowledges that his world is a place between life and death: "Somewhere where we go to sort ourselves. Coppers."
  • Keats: "Gradually they came to you, those who had issues with their passing. And you tucked in their shirts and you wiped their noses. Sorting out the troubled souls of Her Majesty's constabulary."
  • Drake: "You helped Sam. Do I mean nothing to you Gene? I only wanted to get back home, to my little girl."
  • Drake sums up Gene Hunt: "You're the most difficult, stubborn, obnoxious, mysoginistic and reckless human being I've ever met. And yet still you make me feel safe."
Gerard McGarry's picture

Comments

tatonkascot's picture

I hate to say.....

....I told you so Gerard....but...:O)  Anyway, I am extremely happy that it was after all 'Life in Limbo'. I am sad that we didn't get a swansong from Sam and Annie, but it was cleverly wrapped up as not being possible in the storyline. They had both 'gone to the light' (shame we didn't get to know what Annies story/resolution was) buy hey ho, you can't 'dot every i' and they did a grand job overall.

I took it that 9.06 was when the clock stopped for Alex...as in that is the time she died?  In limbo/purgatory, she had to resolve the issues with her parents and she couldn't "cross over" because of her duty to her daughter.  If I am being really picky, then I could say that the revelation she wouldn't see Molly again and then acceptance of having to go to "the pub".... was a bit rushed as, after all it was her driving force and motivation for the whole show.

Sam Tyler, resolved his childhood issues, but then recovered from his coma and got to go back.  Once back he didn't want to stay, but he misunderstood that limbo was only a staging post.  He had to move on and his moving on had to be covered by the 'car in the river' story for the sake of the others still needing to reach their resolutions.

What doesn't quite fit is why Sam (by mistakenly returning to limbo thinking it was real and/or heaven) ...saves Gene's 'life' (in the railway blag) by doing so....at the time giving justification to him returning to '1973'.

Why, based on the 'Ashes' explanation would Sam end up back with Gene when he committed suicide?  Is it purely because of Gene's responsibility in making his world so attractive?  It does go against his remit of a 'saviour of dead coppers' if he is the reason one ends up dead in the first place.  Is this why Keats was so scornful of Hunt?  Sam Tyler was what the devil used to undermine what Hunt was trying to do?  He was Gene's mistake and it could never happen again...Alex thought that because Tyler got back, she would too and her tragedy was not realising that but for Tyler, it was always a one way ticket.  This could have been clarified a bit more for me....with Hunt telling her as much.

Anyway, its all over and the ending was as good as I could have hoped for...time to say goodbye and as these are not days of heaven in terms of quality British TV drama, it is going to be missed.

.......'Pub anyone?'

whatsamoran's picture

9:06 imo...

it was also 9:06 at the clock monument where chris/shaz found the diamonds.

i think it was easier for alex to pass over to death this season more so than the previous two, because this season, alex hasnt even been thinking of molly.  it seems the longer you stay in purgatory/limbo, the more you forget the past and get disconnected to it.  when alex supposedly woke up from her coma, it was said that molly was sent to the godfather's place - which to me was kind of odd considering how much alex wanted to be with molly for the past two series.  it looked as if she had in some way come to terms with being apart from molly even after she had supposedly come back to the real world.

sam knew what he was doing in by committing suicide and coming back to gene.  he couldnt bear the restrictions and constrictions of the modern 'real' world anymore.  but i think the reason sam wanted to leave gene's world was that he had had enough of the play world & had already worked out his issues. like gene said, the work was done, pub, end of.  it was sam's time to pass on.

yes, i think sam's coming back was a mistake and that's why keats kept using it against gene.  but i think gene kept sam's secret from alex because revealing it would be too premature in rationalizing with alex that she wouldnt be able to go back to life.

alex's death was always set.  she wasnt ever going back like sam did.  but she was very persistant, until series 3.  i think gene knew that if he told her prematurely about what happened, then she would not only fight him, but 'make a deal with the devil' (keats).  i think gene thought that's how desperate alex was. 

but i think that in alex's helping the others to come to terms with this limbo world,  their own deaths, and then seeing them off at the 'pub,' alex was able to be stronger in coming to terms with her own death and thereby was able to withstand keats' final temptations and dealmaking - molly's scented scarf & blaming gene for tricking alex to go where the pub was.  (alex didnt seem to understand gene's references to the pub until after she saw it.) 

Rosie-Lee's picture

Goodbye Ashes To Ashes

I actually applauded Daniel Mays' performance, he was absolutely brilliant and so repugnant.  He had to be some sort of demon, with his manic, snarling behaviour, not necessarily Lucifer himself (as has been said, possibly the elusive "Nick" he referred to); which was clinched for me when the lift doors opened in the "new Department" and screams and wails came from below, which Shaz heard.  I had the subtitles on to keep the sound down on the TV (my elderly neighbour goes to bed early) as I didn't want to miss a word, and it said "Screams Come From Below", so I thought oy oy, Hell beckons.  But you can't be entrapped by the Devil until you step into Hell, which of course our intrepid trio did not do.  He produced the videos (easy peasy for Beelzebub) of their deaths, figuring it would shock them into believing he could offer them something better than Gene.  He lost his power somewhat once the trio had slipped through his fingers, which gave Gene the opportunity to punch his lights out. 

I saw Gene as the "Ferryman", a natural leader, taking control of the souls until things had been sorted out and he could bring them to the light, where Nelson (St. Peter?) welcomed them in to the pub (Paradise?).   Gene presumably could not have foreseen that Sam would commit suicide once he had survived his coma and went back to the future.  So I guess Gene had to do the best he could when Sam came back again and then died, to get Sam and his girlfriend to the pub Paradise. 

I was sorry that Alex did not get back with Molly, or that Gene and Alex did not end up together, but that would have been too neat I suppose.  But it left Gene to get back to his lost souls, and this time with a Mercedes (Cosworth?).  I was gutted when the Quattro was shot to pieces!

I am sorry the series has ended, it has been a real rollercoaster.   I am only consoled by the fact that Dexter will be back.

Goodbye and thanks for the laughs, Nigel Perkins.....nah, not really, Gene Hunt! Mine's a pie and a pint........

 

 

Bysshette's picture

End of an era?

Chris and Ray DID intercept the diamond heist~accompanied by the soundtrack from "Chariots of Fire".

I'm surprised that it wasn't clarified why the victims had pieces of quartz placed in their mouths when it had been made a "thing" of, but I suppose there were far more important things to be wrapped up.

For your quotes, can I suggest the "I am arresting you for killing my car ... " line from Gene, but I can't remember exactly what the wording and insults were, so I'll leave it to you if that's ok.

All round, quite a satisfactory ending, but I still can't quite get used to the idea that we'll never hear Gene's dulcet tones again! ("Fire up the Merc!" anyone?)

Thanks for your speedy review.

 

 

Rosie-Lee's picture

Evenin' All

I loved the final touch of George Dixon, Dixon of Dock Green, doing the "goodnight" after the credits.  Presumably this links with resurrection, and the fact that the character of George Dixon was originally killed off in the Dirk Bogarde film The Blue Lamp (1950), only to be brought back to life in 1955 as the start of the BBC tv series, Dixon Of Dock Green.

PS:  What was it Gene said to the Dutch villain:  "Ich bien nicked!" or some such double dutch!

 

tomjones's picture

Could someone please clarify

Could someone please clarify (if they know) where did Chris, Shaz, Ray, and Alex go by walking into the pub? What does the Railway Arms signify? 

tomjones's picture

Could someone please clarify

Could someone please clarify (if they know) where did Chris, Shaz, Ray, and Alex go by walking into the pub? What does the Railway Arms signify? 

jefft's picture

re:Could someone please clarify

The railway arms was the drinking hole in Life on Mars, back in Manchester.

The barman always had an air of knowing more about what was going on than Sam.

I does raise the question of why everyone in LOM didn't 'go into the light' when they went for a pint, but run with it.

Maybe this 'Railway Arms' is the pub at the end of the rainbow..

whatsamoran's picture

the pub: imo...

after they go in, you can see a flash of bright light in there.  presumably, they've crossed over to the other side, or maybe heaven, whereas keats' elevator was the portal to hell.

it looked like shaz, ray, and alex knew what it meant - that they werent coming back out and it was the final goodbye.  that's why shaz kissed gene and ray got 'puffy' about his goodbye to gene.  only chris didnt seem to know, trying to invite gene by listing the drinks & foods the pub sells.  i think that's why shaz went up to chris, kissed him, & told him she loved him, cuz his naivete was so enduring to her.

gene told alex that he took sam to the pub, because the work was over and 'end of.'  that there was no 'why' after pub.  it was the final place to go.

the other times during LOM when the cops went in there for a drink, it was in a normal bar state, but when it's time to cross over finally, it becomes a portal, with nelson tending both normal and supernatural states.

jefft's picture

Excellent.

After all the pain of seeing stars and thinking 'Dont you ruddy DARE' about emulating the American end to LOM, we find that the stars were a tease all along.

Thank goodness!

The fact that Ray,Shaz,and Chris might also be dead, in a coma, etc was sealed when the videos appeared. There really wasnt anything else they could have meant, but the clues through the series were very nicely done.

I missed keats reporting to 'Nick' (and I feel sure I was watching for that kind of clue for some weeks) but as Keats, Chris, Ray and Shaz left the office, Alex says 'Go to Hell' and Keats is straight back with 'OK..'

For quotes, how could you miss the nod to Spock & Kirk in Ray's  

'You are, and always will be.. The Guv'

So much to like about this episode, well written, gripping, emotional, it feels churlish to gripe about the badly placed 'In the air tonight' music in the leadup to the farm. It came in too soon, didnt match the mood, and I was only prepared to forgive it if they had timed it to hit the drums just at a key point.

Instead, it ended in a car crash of a bad edit, leaving me wondering why they had used that piece of music at all.

Hmm.. Yes, that was nit picking.

All in all, a great episode. Matt Graham, take a bow, followed by the cast!

Pub.

 

macleod007's picture

This place is mine. You lot belong to me

It's finally over. Followed this for years and I have to admit got a bit lost a third of the way through the final episode. DIdn't get that Gene was in purgatory and then the realisation.

I have to admit the guy that played Keats was excellent, he was definitely a Demon of some sort, and from the blogs above Keats mentions 'Nick' on numerous occassions but only last night does that make any sense. The lift shaft scene confirmed this with the disembodied screams from below when the lift door opens. Only Shaz realising, well Chreis and Ray do and come back to take out the baddies at the end.

I think the significance of the quartz in the mouth comes from the old custom from ancient time when coinage or jewelery was placed in mouth of the deceased on the journey to the underworld. This would fit in with Genes world and his place as the 'Ferryman', anyone got an feelings on that deduction.

All in all, it was an excelent finale and will be sorely missed.

 

Fire up the Quattro!!!

 

macleod007's picture

This place is mine. You lot belong to me

It's finally over. Followed this for years and I have to admit got a bit lost a third of the way through the final episode. DIdn't get that Gene was in purgatory and then the realisation.

I have to admit the guy that played Keats was excellent, he was definitely a Demon of some sort, and from the blogs above Keats mentions 'Nick' on numerous occassions but only last night does that make any sense. The lift shaft scene confirmed this with the disembodied screams from below when the lift door opens. Only Shaz realising, well Chris and Ray do and come back to take out the baddies at the end.

I think the significance of the quartz in the mouth comes from the old custom from ancient time when coinage or jewelery was placed in mouth of the deceased on the journey to the underworld. This would fit in with Genes world and his place as the 'Ferryman', anyone got an feelings on that deduction.

All in all, it was an excelent finale and will be sorely missed.

 

Fire up the Quattro!!!

 

Rosie-Lee's picture

ASHES TO ASHES - Dust to Dust

Macleod:  Without wishing to sound as if I am copying what you have said, I too thought about the relevance of the quartz in the mouth, and its homage to "paying the Ferryman" as in ancient myth.

There were so many clues snuck into this series, that I hope I can see a repeat of it soon and try and clock more of them the second time around.

"Go to Hell"

"OK"

Oh what a giveaway!!!!!

rokchik's picture

Missing it already!

Fantastic is all I can say...............and missing it already!  Thanks for the review!  Can't believe the Quattro got killed.............a Mercedes just wouldn't be the same after that :o(  but then I wouldn't say no to a new free car all the time ha ha.  Quite a few people that are speculating across the web today seem to have missed the 'bright light' of the Railway Inn, and how it flashed as each of them went in the pub signifying their crossing over.  And I agree with the poster about Drake's realisation about not ever seeing Molly being rushed and too accepted at the end...............but then maybe Gene's reassurance was all she needed?

Can you please include these absolutely classic lines from Gene last night;

  • "Ich bin bloody nicked!"
  • "Oi I'm arresting you for murdering my bloody car you dyke digging tosspot!"
  • "In danger of getting poofy Raymondo!"

Ohhhh how I'll miss Gene...............there was just something about him for the ladies!!

Rosie-Lee's picture

Bright Light in the Railway Inn

There was something quite comforting about the light glowing when each of our little gang went into the pub.  I know the pub was used as a drinking hole in Life On Mars, but I guess souls also passed over at certain times.  Bit like a crossing point safehouse for souls, disguised as a pub.  Magic.

jefft's picture

Another priceless quote

You don't need to put the word 'Why' after the word 'Pub'.

..

and did anyone think Alex's shoes were a bit Dorothy?

Rosie-Lee's picture

Bolly's Ruby Slippers

Well spotted Jeff.  They were rather Dorothyesque!

whatsamoran's picture

wow. will be missing gene...

i will miss gene.  nobody could have played him better than phil g..  gene was perfect in his imperfections.  a kind of wabi sabi.

i liked the small touches they put in the finale: the exact words 'life on mars' played out loudly when alex opened the pub door.  also, when gene raised his hand (holding the paper), it was at the same time alex looked over at the strategy board and the music sounded like a harp/string crescendo - the turning point when continuing the scheme would also save shaz, chris, and ray.  also, keats was in the quattro's driver's seat as the three left the field.  and that as gene was lying on the office floor, for a split second, he turned back into his 19-year old body. also, the ceiling lights were off when gene returned to the office from the pub.  and his crooked smile to nelson was the same thing he did when nelson first appeared in LOM, as if there was some bigger reason for his fondness for nelson.  and his first words to the new guy was what he said to sam. (btw, mb 190d: 1986-1989).  the elevator lobby to hell was painted red and to get to them, they had to walk DOWN the stairs.  i didnt make out what the stickers on the lobby's glass doors meant though.  the big bossomed girl on the staircase to further tempt ray.  nelson beckoning alex to come.  chris being the only one not realizing what the pub really meant.  the hero song at the end.  the flashes when they passed over in the pub.  i think the LOM song played too for the other three.  9:06 on the clock monument where they found the diamonds.  that in order to play the video tapes, they had to view them in keats' room on HIS machine, because he purposely put them on beta, instead of vhs like gene was talking about - there being a vhs machine out in the office.   

i think gene was right in that alex shouldnt stay with him.  as gene said, alex would break his stride and keep questioning his actions.  also, i think alex wouldnt be able to play along in the fake blag games like gene can.  alex would want to do a psychotherapy with the new guys, even possibly telling them what this world really is - while gene's method is to get them to play out their own issues and be forced to come to terms with them.  while alex was helpful, once the jig was up, i think gene knew alex wouldnt keep up the fakery for the newcomers.  their methods were way too different.

i think the reason gene was hard on chris was not only to push him into retaliating & thereby standing up for himself, but because of gene's frustration that chris wasnt responding after all these years.  chris died unnecessarily, because he wouldnt say no to a superior officer.  like chris said, he obeyed and walked into a bullet. 

it hit me when keats mocked gene for being alone now.  i really felt for gene then.  but then again, gene is tough, and he knows there will be newcomers for him to guide through.  so there'll be some type of companionship for him in the future.  also, maybe he can go to railway arms pub whenever he feels a bit down and have a spirit-to-spirit chat with nelson from time to time.  

Gerard McGarry's picture

Why did Gene stay?

I just wanted to ask this question before I watch the show a second time: why did Gene stay on rather than pass on with the others?

Surely he was as much restless spirit as the rest of them? And having brushed off all the suspicion that surrounded him throughout the series, it might have been nice to see him pass on into the light?

So, did I miss his explanation for staying?

Rosie-Lee's picture

Gene Hunt - the sentinel

Gene seemed to be the Ferryman, the Sentinel, the Guardian Angel, or whatever label is appropriate.  He talked to Alex about his mentor, Morrison, so perhaps Morrison was the previous Sentinel and Gene may have taken over from him.  No doubt when the time comes, some other soul would take over from Gene and he too would eventually pass over.  But his determination to help the others and his capacity to stand against the dark side, obviously overrode whatever feeling of loneliness or restlessness he had, making him the ideal candidate for the job. 

tatonkascot's picture

Gene Genie

Gene has his own journey to complete.  As others have said, he died tragically early in his Police career and was unable to become the 'Gene Hunt' of his favourite Westerns.

For his charges it was 'limbo', a place to attain resolution and/or repent or be damned.  For him it really is 'purgatory' where you are forever stuck between the two worlds and you cannot 'cross over'.  Hence the melancholy air despite the 'take a deep breath and hear we go again' acceptance of his lot at the end.

It is Genes destiny to be forever 'wiping the chins of dead coppers' in return for the status he never achieved in life.  The writers did convey Gene's regret at how his youthful inexperience cost him so much.  He found out the hard way that real life is not a movie.

Some things make more sense now. The simplistic weekly 'cops and robbers' stories have some credence (albeit conveniently brushing over the 'painting by numbers' story-lines it could be argued).  Likewise the very episodic staging of each scene adds to the sense of it all being the random firings of a dying conciousness (anyone remember the film Jacobs Ladder?).  That is what viewers need to understand about the time-lines, era's etc.  If this is about the afterlife then earthly time-lines just do not apply.

It gives the writers great freedom because of all the arguments about 'time' running parallel or on a curve...blah, de blah, de blah. Alex's entire time in the 80's could have been the last 30 seconds of her real life, as she subconsciously cried out for the parents she lost in that decade and the 'here and now' got all mixed up with unanswered questions we all have about the 'way back then'. Likewise, Gene died in 1953 but the time-lines are not rigid, any era is open to him to slot into and days, months,years, decades just simply no longer apply.

So, the episodes were very much like the way dreams are if you watch it again. How much have we all incredibly crammed into eight hours of snoozing?  No trivial, everyday stuff, every scene was pertinent to either the weekly or overall story.  Alex would switch from one place to another in different outfits...watch it again and see how 'dreamlike' it all is...well, like my dreams anyway!  ....None of which involve standing in a police station in 1983 in women's clothes I must add!! :O)

Rosie-Lee's picture

Ashes To Ashes - Gene Hunt

I agree about the dreamlike quality of it all, and it is only when you reflect on the series that you think "Oh yeah".   I would still like to think Gene may pass over one day, and hand the baton on to another up and coming "guv".  Presumably he must have taken over from someone else.  I thought the comments from Keats about Gene's youthful exuberance for drink, fast cars and women were so revealing, basically because Gene had never experienced much of that in his real lifetime. 

What I still want to know, is there a hospital limbo for doctors/patients/nurses, or a battlefield limbo for soldiers, for example?

Gerard McGarry's picture

@tatonkascot - Loving your

@tatonkascot - Loving your commentary! I think this is the point where we all run out and buy up Life On Mars and Ashes To Ashes box sets just to catch up on the earlier episodes. If the Beeb were halfway decent, they'd run all five series' over a few months to give us the chance to refresh ourselves on it. I wouldn't mind catching the first series of LOM again.

Anyway, what else is tickling your fancy in tellyland? I've loved having you comment on the weekly reviews - hope you stick around and chat about other stuff with us!

@Rosie-Lee - I think the best bit about how they left the story was that it can continue, and you can almost imagine your own ending - like what point Gene will pass on the role of Guv.

Yikes! I just thought of something horrible - how come a guy who died in 1953 can imagine the world in 1973 and 1981? No, forget I mentioned it...

stevekez's picture

From the 50s to the 80s

@Gerard : He doesn't have to imagine it - the limbo world could be a product of the experiences of those that occupy it, not a construct based solely upon his imagination.

I've only watched this series of the programme, not any of the previous series or LoM. I have borrowed the boxed sets though and will be watching them with enjoyment.

I was very satisfied with the ending. It suggests the writers knew what they were doing from the start - I guess I'll find out if that's true when I watch the rest of it!

weasel61283xx's picture

I have to say I didn't quite

I have to say I didn't quite understand the ending untill reading everyone's comments, now I am a bit more enlightened! Just a few questions:


  • Did Gene know he was a ferryman between the two worlds or had he forgotton who he actually was and got caught up in his own world that he had created for himself?
  • In LOM the character (sorry cant' remember the name) from Hale that pushed Sam to go against Gene in order to wake up seemed similar to the Ashes to Ashes Keats character, yet Sam managed to come out of the coma so surely this character wasn't evil if he subsequently made Sam come back to life? What was this characters purpose in LOM purgetory if Keats was obviouly meant to be or work for the devil? 
jefft's picture

Gene Dreamy

Did Gene know he was a ferryman between the two worlds or had he forgotton who he actually was and got caught up in his own world that he had created for himself?

I think its reasonably clear that it was only as Gene was brought to the site of his shallow grave that the understanding of his role 'came back' to him, much as the videos revealed the truth to Ray, Shaz and Chris. 

That said, I like to think that (having made a choice to remain,) he will already have been forgetting as he stepped out of the office for a word in the shell-like. 


tatonkascot's picture

Cheers Gerard..

....I have enjoyed it too.  Films are more my thing rather than TV drama generally.  I will however be sure to stick around for the banter and hope that something else tickles my fancy.  I have 3 episodes of Luther waiting on Sky+ but anything is going to have to be very special to fill the inevitable void left by our dear departed friends.

Last word should be from The Guv...what 'on earth' are we going to do without him?

.........."Ray if you come in here again dressed like a maths teacher I will paint your balls the colour of hazelnuts and inform a pack of squirrels that winter's coming."

Gerard McGarry's picture

Well, if it floats your boat,

Well, if it floats your boat, your Shout account also allows you to blog - so if you're interested in movies or whatever, you can write reviews or share news about upcoming releases, etc. Look in the box to the top right hand side to see some of the things you can do on Shout.

As for Luther - I skipped those first three episodes, but watched the fourth one earlier this week. Quite slow-paced and grim from what I could see, until the last ten minutes when a grizzly murder or two spiced things up. Might be worth catching up with.