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Daisy Jones & The Six


‘…Daisy Jones & The Six turns a backwards look into a fresh perspective on rock and roll stardom in the steely glam fashion of the A Star is Born reboot…’

Few have been as vocal as this critic in deriding the output of Amazon Prime, a streaming service whose wholesale treatment of old and new product can be best described as careless. Shoddy prints, wrong metadata, frequently having no subtitles and generally dumping product as if the quality or presentation didn’t matter a jot. That’s a frustrating contradiction given how deep Amazon’s pockets are, but praise where praise is due; from producer Reese Witherspoon amongst others, new series Daisy Jones & The Six is a very accomplished winner, a roman a clef that looks back to the sixties and seventies and the early development of the folk-rock super-group that would go on to, erm, mirror the story of Fleetwood Mac.

Of course, if your central characters are meant to be mega rock stars, then you need a high-falutin’ cast to play them, and this adaptation of the bestselling book by Taylor Jenkins Reid isn’t sold short by the casting. Taking on the role of powerhouse rocker Daisy Jones, Riley Keough shouldn’t need too much introduction; she’s film and musical royalty as a precious nepo-baby, the grand-daughter of Elvis Presley no less, and is hardly dining out on family connection here. ‘No-one wants to hear your voice,’ she’s told in episode one, but Daisy Jones won’t settle for that, and doesn’t want to be anyone’s muse; she wants it all for herself, and that sets up plenty of conflict in the uber-male 70’s. Sam Claflin also does himself a lot of good with his portrayal of Billy Dunne, an ego-centric front man who struggles to make way for the headstrong Daisy in his band as they strive for chart glory. “Don’t put down roots in bad-ass’ is a savvy line that tells you were we’re going somewhere complex and emotionally dank, and its going to be fun getting there.

I’m all in with Daisy Jones, there’s six episodes online at the time of writing, and it’s working for me; the sixties atmosphere is well caught with early references to Linda Ronstadt and Burt Lancaster in The Swimmer that land, then Barry Manilow and Rollerball also get a mention, and for once, it’s a pleasure to see a rock biopic that isn’t officially licenced and has the freedom to make the characters more than just advertising shills. It’s also a bonus that there’s no murder and tragedy involved (for now), and the usual striving of meaning in a rock biopic is replaced by wide-eyed gawking at the romantic disagreements of the soon-to-be-famous. The cast are seen in two time frames, and distractingly look younger in their later years than they do in the main narrative, but it’s a relief to see performers aged up rather than down, and the original songs in the style of Fleetwood Mac are absolutely choice, Look At Us Now is a winner, and so is Aurora.

I interviewed the late Peter Green from Fleetwood Mac a few years back; a complicated procedure involving a flurry of faxes sternly warning me that no discussion of firearms, drugs or other germane topics would be tolerated. Green, with some moral support on the other end of the phone, managed to pass on two revived rock truisms over the course of a 15 minute interview slot – ‘Don’t be disappointed in disappointment’ and “Have a good time, all the time.’ If nothing else, this series probably has more of a take on what happened to Fleetwood Mac as the surviving members do. When so many rock films are stymied as dramas by their adherence to the wishes of the singer’s estate, it’s refreshing to see Daisy Six take the Velvet Goldmine approach; change the names and say whatever you damn well want. ‘Sometimes the back of somebody is the best way to see them’ seems like the moral here; Daisy Jones & The Six turns a backwards look into a fresh perspective on rock and roll stardom in the steely glam fashion of the A Star is Born reboot.


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  1. So a friend actually got yelled at last week for talking during towing practice, and we were discussing whether or not we should watch this.

    I read the novel, which I found good but not great. And I am a fan of the Reese TV universe.

    I had decided on no, but I’m bumping it back to maybe after your review….

  2. I’m as impressed by your review as I was by singers chops! Awesome! Nice throwback to 70s CAL scene; fabulous attire and boho feel, soulful lyrics. I get a Neil Young vibe and a tickle of Ronstat, Rait, and Deb Harry. And perhaps hint of Joni in lyric writing scenes. Excellent observation about a film that has its own brand of angst, but doesn’t need overt violence, guns, and blood to sell it! I’m ready for a new film biopic based on book I read a decade ago about Carly Simon, Joni, & Carol King…Girls Like Us, book by Shelia Webber.

    • I will seek out that book, it sounds right up my street!; there’s a bit of Grace Slick going down here as well, but all the better because it doesn’t run through the facts like most biopics, in a haphazard way. I put these clips in so that everyone can see how great the music here is; they really took a lot of care to nail that sound! This is one of the best from Amazon to be sure…

  3. This was going to be our next series after finishing The Last of Us but I read a quite damning review of it in the Independent and thought I’d be best giving it a miss. But I will watch the first episode now and then decide whether to DFN or do the lot. I think Phil might appreciate it as he was in a band at that time.

  4. When I saw the book making the blog rounds a few years ago I figured at some point it would get made into a movie. I guess they went even further since it’s a tv show.

  5. Don’t know what would be worse: Watching six episodes of this or having to do a fifteen-minute interview with some sleb who was laying down ground rules about what questions he wanted me to ask him. Quite a dilemma.

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