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The Complete Collection with the uncut episodes

Dahmer: Collector's Edition

The Last House On The Left

Flash Gordon


Ashes to Ashes

1.02 The Happy Day


  • International Version
  • UK Version
Release: Sep 01, 2015 - Author: Tony Montana - Translator: Tony Montana - external link: IMDB - more from this series
Compared are the cut International Version (German DVD by Polyband/WVG / FSK 16) and the uncut UK Version (UK DVD by Entertainment One / BBFC 15)

- 1 scene with alternate footage
- 9 removed scenes
- 11 extended scenes
- Length difference: 365.88 seconds / approx. 6 minutes and 6 seconds


Ashes to Ashes is a spin-off of the amazing BBC show Life on Mars (not to be confused with the US Version starring Harvey Keitel as Gee Hunt, which is basically alright, but compared to the original, it comes off second best). Similar to Life on Mars, Ashes to Ashes is about a person that has an accident and then wakes up back in time. While DCI Sam Tyler from Life on Mars woke up in the 70s after a car crash, DI Alex Drake wakes up in the 80s after she got shot. Just like Sam, Alex desperately tries to find a way to get home, back to her little daughter Molly.

While Life on Mars took place in Manchester, Ashes to Ashes takes place in London. Other than the location, not many things have changed because DCI Hunt and his team have been transfered from Manchester to London. Besides Gene "The Gene Genie" Hunt himself, Ray Carling and Chris Skelton are in on it as well. Only Sam Tyler and Annie Cartwright are missing. Instead of Annie, young Shaz Granger is part of the team now. And instead of Sam, the spin-off is about Alex Drake. Like Sam, she sometimes gets upset about Gene's old-school methods and knows better. Among other things because there are things Gene simply cannot know yet because it has not happened yet.

Personally, I like Ashes to Ashes better than Life on Mars, which was an amazing show nonetheless. The different focus of each season is an added value that did not exist in Life on Mars. Furthermore, there is more Gene Hunt in it, who, similar to Ari Gold in Entourage, is the actual star of the show - despite the fact that the story is primarily about another person.

The Seasons

Season 1 is the season with the most similarities to Life on Mars. In both, the main character tries to figure out what to do how to get back home. This is also the only common theme in this first season. Other than that, the first season consists of "Case of the Week" episodes, as already known from Life on Mars (except for the final episodes of course).

Season 2 already tries a different approach. For the very first time, there is a common theme throughout the entire second season. In this case, it is a corruption scandal within the police that goes to the top. Indeed, there are a few "Case of the Week" episodes, but the characters never lose sight of the big picture, the corruption scandal, and it all ends in a two-part episode with a huge cliffhanger.

The final Season 3 has an entirely different concept. After cliffhanger finale in the second season, it takes some time until everything is back to normal. But even then, nothing is as it used to be. Starting with the first episode of this season, Alex has recurring visions of a young policeman wtih half of his face blown off. Moreover, a new character (Jim Keats) is being established. Apparently, Keats is after Hunt and he spares no effort to split up the team.
In general, the final season is more sinister on any level. Also, there are regular references to Sam Tyler and Life on Mars. The ending of Ashes to Ashes is also an ending of Life on Mars, if you will. Though there was an actual ending in Life on Mars, there was room for interpretation. In the finale of Ashes to Ashes, one gets a definite answer about where Sam and Alex are/were. Knowing Life on Mars is not a necessity, but it makes understanding the final season of Ashes to Ashes easier, that's for sure.
Certainly, the ending is not to everybody's taste. But it fits in perfectly, considering that the final season is rather sinister from the very beginning. In Life on Mars, the ending seemed a bit hasty resp. it all happened so sudden and next thing you know, the show was over. That does not mean the ending was bad. On the contrary, I liked it. But in Ashes to Ashes, it all seems thoroughly though through. And despite some reviews on the internet, the ending does make sense resp. one ending does not contradict the other one. The ending of Ashes to Ashes "only" adds another aspect to it. Explaining this in detail would be a massive spoiler hence I am not going to do that. But watch both shows and think about it for yourself. That way, it is more fun anyway. Also, I strongly advise to watch all 5 seasons of Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes at least twice because the ending of Ashes to Ashes puts everything in a new perpective.

The Versions

Similar to Life on Mars, there are two versions of Ashes to Ashes as well: the so-called "International Version", which lacks footage and has been sold internationally, and the longer resp. uncut "UK Version".

The Uncut Versions of both shows are available in the UK: Life on Mars on both Blu-ray and DVD, Ashes to Ashes only on DVD for some reason.

Bottom line, the International Versions are alright because no elementary scene has been removed. I would still recommend the Uncut Versions though because some of the removed footage is quite nice.

Time index refers to the UK Version (in PAL)
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Removed Scene

No recap in the International Version. (no screenshots)

32 sec

Alternate Footage

Only the German DVD contains the additional titel "Zurück in die 80er" ("Back to the 80s). For obvious reasons, the UK DVD only contains the original show title. Furthermore, the German title of the episode follows after the opening. In the UK Version, the title does not appear.

Please note: I am well aware that this is irrelevant for international audiences, but I would not be surprised if this alteration had been made in other (non-English speaking) countries as well.

no difference

Removed Scene

The International Version ends with "It's like a powder keg round here. Just waiting for a spark. It's not gonna happen. Not this week, not for Di.".
In the UK Version the dialog continues.
Gene: "Chris, get up there and kick the door down. Let's get 'em out of there."
Alex: "Hang on. Why risk a spark? Who's the dominant personality up there?"
Ray: "Landlord. David Bonds. Hard as nails."
Alex: "Who else?"
Ray: "His wife. Who won't say boo to a goose. His son, who's spent too much time in the shallow end of the gene pool."
Ray and Chris snigger.
Alex: "OK, look and learn, constructs."
Alex leaves, Gene says to Ray and Chris: "Alright, let her do her stuff for a minute, then break the sodding door down."
Alex comes out of the house. While standing in front of it, she looks up and yells: "Mr. Bonds."
Small pause, then she yells again: "Mr. Bonds."
Then a woman behind the yellow tape: "What's happening in there?"
Gene: "Shut up!"
Then Alex again: "Mr. Bonds, my name's DI Alex Drake. I wonder if myself and my colleague could come up and have a chat."
During the last comment, a window opens.
Alex keeps talking: "See if we can help you achieve the conclusion you're looking for."
Alex and Gene wait a second, then Gene proceeds to action: "Right, let's get the door down."
When Gene intends to enter the house, a key appears in front of his face. Apparently, the family is ready to talk after all. Alex walks by him with a smile on her face and grabs the key. Then they quesition the family in the UK Version as well.

67.28 sec

Extended Scene

Alex' explanation what is going to change is longer in the UK Version.
Alex: "Sorry. I just wanted to say that I admire your stance, Mr. Bonds. I really do. But there is no point in fighting a battle that can't be won. In ten years' time, glass and steel will tower above us. The only thing that will remain from this street will be the street name. I've seen it, so I know. So please, let us help you move on. There will be other battles to fight in other places. And battles you may even have a chance of winning."
Then the versions are back in sync.

The bold-marked dialogs are missing in the International Version.

4.68 sec

Extended Scene

The following scene is longer in the UK Version.
Gene leaves his office: "There has been an incident over at the Royal Docks."
Ray: "What sort of incident?"
Now a flashback, the conversation continues off-screen.
Gene: "A bloody messy one, that's what!"
We see a dog. He grabs some dynamite and runs off with it.
Gene: "If anybody laughs, I will attach jump-leads to their genitalia."
Then a shot of Alex laughing, accompanied by the sound of an explosion.
Alex: "I'm sorry. I'm sorry."

The bold-marked dialogs are missing in the International Version.

4.2 sec

Removed Scene

The discussion why "Forget the dog, next time it's moore" is spelled with two "Os" is a bit longer in the UK Version. Gene asks "Who is 'Moore'?". Then he flips the letter one more time, which is missing in the International Version. When he snaps his fingers, the versions are back in sync.

2.48 sec

Extended Scene

The conversation with Daniel Moore is longer in the UK Version.
Moore: "Look, I'm sorry. I've got a business meeting."
Alex: "Actually, although there was widespread opposition at the time and, God knows, the woman was appalling, the Left came to see Thaterism is a necessary political evil. Unions were emasculated which lead to the abolition of Clause 4 and the rise of New Labour. Although not everybody…"
Gene looks really annoyed and he is watching her all the time. When she picks up on that, she stops talking politics and gets back to the actual case.

The bold-marked dialogs are missing in the International Version.

5.04 sec

Extended Scene

The scene at Luigi's starts way earlier in the UK Version.
Alex and Gene are eating at the table.
Alex: "I wonder if these calories count."
Gene: "What?"
Alex: "A moment on the lips, an afterlife on the hips. That would be just my luck."
Gene: "He's a bloody fool. Still, as long as he don't come cry to me when he's blown to bits.
Oi, Luigi. Hope you gave this horse a decent funeral."
Luigi: "Very funny, Mr. Hunt. Good one."

The bold-marked dialogs are missing in the International Version. Furthermore, there is alternate footage during Gene's comment "Oi, Luigi. Hope you gave this horse a decent funeral.". With Luigi's "Very funny, Mr. Hunt. Good one.", the versions rae back in sync.

21.64 sec

Extended Scene

Gene asks for results about the origin of the letter. When Chris answers, the versions continue differently.
Gene: "You got that bloody note sorted?"
Chris: "Three of the letters are from the Mirror, two from a Millway programme and this curly thing 'ere…"
Alex: "The apostrophe."
Chris: "Yes, it's from the Woman’s Weekly, I think.
It's those weird "Os" though, I can't seem to find them anywhere."

The bold-marked dialogs are missing in the International Version. As a result, some footage is missing as well resp. the scene is slightly recut. For instance, the International Version shows Gene when Chris says "two from a Millwall programme" while one gets to see that very shot of Chris in the UK Version when he says "it's from the Woman's Weekly, I think". With Moore's appearance, the versions are back in sync.

9.68 sec

Removed Scene

Moore and Alex are on the road. The ending of the scene, right before they have reached their destination, is longer in the UK Version.
In the International Version, Moore says "Have dinner with me". The scene ends, then the next scene with him stopping in front of the building.
In the UK Version, the scene continues after Moore's "Have dinner with me". Then he stops here as well.
Moreover, the music from the longer ending of the scene in the UK Version is audible during the the beginning of the following scene in the International Version. As a result, there is music playing when Alex laughs in the International Version. In the UK Version, she just laughs.

3.72 sec

Extended Scene

Gene's and Ray's discussion is longer in the UK Version.
Gene: "We've got a potential major incident on our hands and everyone's gone AWOL. Where’s Chris?"
Ray: "Says he's got a dicky stomach. Fairy. And Drake'll be getting her knickers off round about now in the DeLorean. Anything?"
Gene: "World War II dynamite, they reckon."

The bold-marked dialogs are missing in the International Version.

7.36 sec

Removed Scene

The ending of their conversation is longer as well.
In the International Version, Ray puts down his empty glass, says "See you later" ad Gene responds with "See ya". Then music plus Moore's first comment to Alex from the off ("A lot of people have clown phobias").
In the UK Version, the scene continues. Gene is contemplative, someone walks past him and says "Night, guv". With a small delay, Gene looks up and says "Night". After "Night, guv", the music starts playing in the UK Version as well and and while Gene empties his glass, one gets to hear Moore's "A lot of people have clown phobias". After that, the versions are back in sync.

12.04 sec

Extended Scene

Busting George (the son) takes longer in the UK Version resp. after Gene dragged Bonds down the stairs, there is more dialog in the UK Version.
Alex: "Chris, turn this place upside down."
Chris: "What am I looking for?"
Alex: "Dynamite? Ace."
Bonds (from the off): "There's no dynamite in my house, you stupid cow!"
Due to that comment, Ray feels the need to help Bonds to "cool off".
Alex can't believe it and says: "I'm so sorry, I have no idea where this stuff is coming from."

Mrs. Bonds (from the off): "Stop it! Please, stop it!"
Gene: "Get him down the station. I want this done and dusted."

The bold-marked dialogs are missing in the International Version. Due to the additional footage, Mrs. Bonds' comment makes more sense because the UK Version contains more footage of him.

11.2 sec

Removed Scene

The versions continue differently from here on.
The International Version instantaneously shows the interrogation of Bonds jr. In the UK Version, Ray talks to Chris instead.
Ray: "New Romantics?! Bunch of suburban poofs wearing doilies on their heads. You didn't really go there, did you?"
Chris: "Back against the wall, obviously. Eh, guess who else was there? DI Drake."
Ray: "You're kidding. I told you she was a lesbo."
Shaz (who just entered): "Who's a lesbo?"
Still Shaz, now to Chris: "You never said if you enjoyed last last night."
Chris: "Yeah, it was really good."
Ray: "He's just told me it was full of poofs and saddos."
Shaz (to Chris): "Did you say that? Some of those 'poofs and saddos' are my best friends."
Still Shaz, now to Ray: "Did he tell you he was wearing eye-liner?"
Shaz then leaves and Chris acts busy: "I've got work to do."
Ray can't believe what he just heared: "What the f... ?"
The UK Version then contiues with the interrogation as well.

41.8 sec

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