the Seventies


Born in 1970, Life On Mars star John Simm has vague memories of the era in which the show is set.

"I was born in 1970 so my personal memories of the Seventies are a bit vague. I do remember bits of it very well, 1977 for some reason - I recall a specific t-shirt that I wore, which had a Starsky and Hutch yellow transfer on the front. I remember The Sex Pistols too - I remember seeing punks.

"I remember Elvis Presley dying in 1977 really, really vividly. And there were some toys that I remember really well. I had a Strika bike rather than a chopper, it was green and I loved it very much.

"I loved The Six Million Dollar Man*; I'm obsessed with Steve Austin. I bought a DVD of it recently and looking at it now, it's absolutely rubbish, I was heart broken! I loved Starsky and Hutch, The Professionals* and I remember Champion the Wonder Horse*, Flash Gordon* and Zorro*.

"Music holds a lot of memories too, I remember walking into a school hall and hearing Elvis playing, I can see it all now - music does that, brings memories flooding back; music and smells. There was a smell from a passport cover the other day and it was literally BANG! It smelt exactly like a toy that I had as a kid, it was exactly the same.

"I remember a specific t-shirt that I wore in 1977, which had a Starsky and Hutch yellow transfer on the front."
John Simm
"It was great to go back and rediscover that era. For the first month at least I was looking at all the magazines on set and I think I read every single one of them about twice. The pictures of footballers, the big Curly Wurlys, Party Sevens and all that. And the cars as well, the array of cars!

"With the costumes I figured that if this is all in Sam's head then he's not going to want to look completely ridiculous in a clownish suit! Luckily because Sam's from the future I didn't have to deal with the big moustaches or long hair or anything like that!

"The suits were outrageously bad so I went for the leather jacket and the Cuban heels which were fantastic. Although it's hard to chase criminals in Cuban heals I have to say!"

"Everyone on set wanted the Ford Cortina*; it became quite a coveted item. Screeching car chases, fantastic!

"Unfortunately I didn't get to drive it because it was Gene's car and I didn't have one which is unfair! Maybe a Capri or something would be nice!"