Published on July 21st, 2009 | by Lottie6
Why So Series: Spaced
Starring: Jessica Hynes (Stevenson), Simon Pegg & Nick Frost
Channel: Channel 4
First Aired: 24th September 1999
Concluded: 13th April 2001
Meet Daisy (Jessica Hynes-Stevenson) and Tim (Simon Pegg), both down on their luck and out on their arses at the end of two disastrous relationships. A chance meeting in a greasy spoon results in Daisy & Tim, previous strangers, shacking up together as a make-believe couple in order to get a great apartment which stipulates that only couples need apply.
Pegg and Stevenson are not only the stars but the writers of the series with Edgar Wright directing all 14 episodes. “Spaced” is heavily laden with pop culture references and according to Pegg (& wikipedia) the US TV show Northern Exposure, with it’s frequent use of fantasy sequences was one of the key influences on the show. The pair pitched the show as The Simpsons meets the X-Files meets Northern Exposure.
What really makes the show work though is that the main characters are likable and there’s genuine chemistry between the leads.
The show follows a witty group of odd-ball characters who live together in a co-sharing house in London. It has a dynamic that could be likened to Friends on too much Tetley’s tea and Cider.
Aside from Tim and Daisy, there’s Marsha , the lecherous but well-meaning alcoholic landlord who is never without her cigarette and tipsy drawl. Then there’s Amber, Marsha’s delinquent daughter who like, Home Improvement’s Wilson or Frasier’s Merris, we never really meet.
Brian, the manically depressed artist from the flat below. I’m never quite sure if Brian is a psychotic sociopath on the edge or just intense and sensitive but then I think that’s the idea.
Brian is besotted with Twist, Daisy’s best-friend, who as as Tim puts it is ‘sweet, but stupid, or an evil genius’.
Finally, Tim’s “bestest bud“, Mike Watt (Nick Frost) whose life’s dream is to join the British Army but is thwarted due to pesky detached retinas. There are suggestions throughout that Mike’s over protectiveness towards Tim actually stems from a lifelong crush. When writing Spaced, Pegg included the character and persuaded Edgar Wright to cast Frost.
Marsha loves Brian, Brian loves Twist, Twist loves fashion, Mike may love Tim and Tim…well you’re just going to have to watch it to find out.
The main problem with the series is equally it’s greatest asset – it’s short lived. After only two series, fourteen episodes, Spaced stopped at it’s peak.
I came late to “Spaced”, only catching it on DVD last year and it really is a fun, enjoyable show. The entire two series only consists of fourteen episodes so can easily be watched over a lazy weekend or a few weeks and you may find yourself wanting to watch them again to see what gags you missed first time around. And the really good news? You can get the full full box-set from Play for only €19.49.