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Ashes to Ashes is a British television drama series, which serves as a sequel to the 2006 series Life on Mars. It is a Kudos Film & Television production for BBC Wales, currently being broadcast on BBC One. It premiered on 7 February 2008 at 9:00 PM .
Features DCI Gene Hunt (played by Philip Glenister) from Life on Mars. He is joined by an experienced female detective from the 21st century, DI Alex Drake, who wakes up in 1981 after being shot in 2008. Also reappearing are Chris Skelton  who emerges as a "technical wizard" and Ray Carling. All have transferred to the Metropolitan Police in London and Chris and Ray remain loyal to Gene.   Augmenting the team is WPC Sharon 'Shaz' Granger.
As with the parent series, the show's name comes from a David Bowie song of the era in which it is set, in this case 1980's "Ashes to Ashes".    It is established that DI Alex Drake, a trained police psychologist, has been studying the suicide of DCI Sam Tyler and is familiar with the detailed description he recorded of his experiences of life in 1973  (whilst he was actually in a coma in 2006).
When Drake herself is shot during a hostage situation and finds herself transported back to 1981, it is her familiarity with Tyler's world that leads her to deduce she is "hallucinating". She also draws upon her knowledge of Tyler's experiences in 1973 to inform her decisions on how to act in the world of 1981. For example, she spends time finding and tuning a powerful radio so that she can receive information from the "real world", because this is how Tyler received information about the progression of his coma in his world of 1973. Alex does eventually receive messages from Rainbow characters Zippy and George, a handheld radio and the television set.
Drake is also stalked by a sinister Pierrot (resembling David Bowie's appearance in the Ashes to Ashes music video), who appears to echo the role of the Test Card F girl in Life on Mars.
Drake learns from DS Ray Carling that Tyler returned to Manchester in 1973 and spent seven years serving faithfully alongside Gene Hunt. In 1980 he drove his car into a river during a car chase and is presumed dead, though the body was never found. A newspaper clipping paying posthumous tribute to Tyler's achievements hangs in Hunt's office. Hunt subsequently transferred to the Metropolitan Police, taking Carling and Skelton with him.
As in the case of Sam Tyler in Life on Mars, from Hunt's point of view Drake has asked to be transferred to his division from elsewhere. Unlike Tyler in Life on Mars, Drake is a DI in the present day and a DI in the past.        -     (  Main Picture :Dailly Star - 11 feb 08 )

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