Written by Simon Pegg and Jessica Hynes (then Jessica Stevenson) the series follows Tim Bisley, graphic artist and comic shop employee, and Daisy Steiner, a currently unemployed aspiring journalist, as they decide to rent a flat together. At the heart of the series is the premise that Tim and Daisy, despite being relative strangers when they first move in, pretend to be a couple, believing that to be a requirement of renting their flat. We meet some other residents of the building including Marsha, their wine-loving landlady, and Brian, the artist that 'rents downstairs'. Tim's friend, the gun-toting Mike, and Daisy's fashion-mad friend, Twist, also join the narrative as it unfolds, each episode revealing new layers of the relationship between this group of friends.
|Tim & Daisy = More Shaggy and Velma than|
Fred and Daphne.
In the past, some people have suggested there are similarities between the character of Daisy, and I - something I've often shied away from. Sure, there is, in her, the journalistic ambitions I once held, the constant tea-drinking, the propensity to procrastinate, the love of plastic jewellery and the Velma-not-Daphne Scooby Doo characteristics. I did, also, once write a piece for the magazine called 'Winter Skincare Do's and Don'ts', as does Daisy, in one of her few published pieces of work. I would previously blush at the comparisons, perhaps because I could also see some of my less favourable traits in her character. Her laziness, insecurity and tendency to say the wrong thing when it matters most are things I can see in my own character. However, in recent years, I have come to see the comparison as a flattering thing, as Daisy is really quite a hero. Nothing says it better than this brilliant piece all about Ms. Steiner on Wit&Fancy (link).
|There is an underlying possibility of romance between|
Tim and Daisy throughout the show, but
crucially it does not diminish from the focus that
this show is about a group of friends.
If I had to chose a favourite episode, I think I would go for Art, Episode 3 from Series 1. It features a marvellous opening sequence where a hallucinating Tim fights off zombies and Mike has managed a cross-country journey by train, whilst 'chemically refreshed'. Brian agonises over whether to attend a piece of performance art by his former partner and 'non-gender-specific-ex-chaste-heterosexual-lover', including a fantastic sequence where he chooses what to wear, whilst Daisy manages to get an interview at a new women's magazine. Like so much of the writing on the series, it interweaves the different characters' narrative strands together expertly, concluding eventually in a shared experience - the gang together again. Like Scooby-Doo, in a way. There are many stand-out moments from this episode but this fabulous scene, which features Tim attempting to console Daisy after her rather appalling performance at a promising job interview is just brilliant, in every sense.
If you've never seen Spaced, I heartily recommend it. You can get Series 1 and 2 in a boxset for less than £7!