By Katie Sterling
They’ve garnered millions of fans in recent months, their album has reached the top 10 on iTunes charts and, perhaps most notable of all, they’re a band that technically doesn’t even exist. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the fictional stage…Daisy Jones and the Six!
Adapted from Taylor Jenkin Reid’s bestselling novel, Daisy Jones and the Six follows the story of a band riding the exhilarating waves of newfound fame, until that fast-paced lifestyle leaves them all burned. The series begins with a flash of the future, alerting audiences to their eventual demise, but leaving viewers left to wonder, what caused them to bottom out when they finally reached the top?
Following the format of the novel, the story is told through an interview style where the narrative switches from scenes of the band in the 70’s, to each individual member in the current day being interviewed about that notorious time period. It’s been two decades since The Six played their final show and it’s evident that while each has moved on with their life, time certainly hasn’t healed all wounds. Most obvious is the strained relationship between the band’s de facto leaders Daisy Jones (Riley Keough) and Billy Dunne (Sam Claflin), two creative people who accept, albeit stubbornly, that while they both have talent, it’s clear they are stronger together than apart.
Rounding out The Six are Dunne’s guitarist brother Graham (Will Harrison), bassist Eddie (Josh Whitehouse), drummer Warren (Sebastian Chacon), keyboardist Karen (Suki Waterhouse) and Dunne’s girlfriend/early band promoter/eventual wife Camilla (Camilla Morrone). The early episodes of the band getting together and finding their cohesiveness and bringing Daisy into the fold are some of the most fun of the series. As Daisy and Billy learn that they have to set aside their differences in order for the band to truly be the best, creative and personal lines get blurred, threatening more than one relationship in the band. Those who remember that period will certainly see influences of the Fleetwood Mac parallel, while others have noted the Almost Famous similarities. From the highs to the lows, it’s clear that Daisy Jones and the Six perfectly encapsulates the sex, drugs and rock and roll vibes of the 70s.
But above all, you can’t have a rock and roll band without the music. After all, a huge chunk of the storyline is Daisy and Billy coming together to weave their talents to create undeniable hits. While audiences see the creative process behind the songs, which fuels most of the drama, they are also treated to full performances of them. Again, songs that while intentionally created solely for this show, have become so popular in the mainstream, they are dominating the charts. Both Keough and Claflin trained for their performances and while certainly not known for their musical talents, manage to pull it off enough that you’re singing right along with them. (Keough does have some music in her genes, seeing as how her grandfather was Elvis, after all.)
Throughout the whole series, it’s evident that while climbing the ladder to their success, they’re also sowing the seeds of their own demise. What makes this show so fun is riding that rollercoaster alongside them. (The costumes don’t hurt either – I sense an imminent trend of bellbottoms resurging.) The cast is strong, the tunes are catchy and it’s compact enough for you to follow the trajectory of the band without wanting, or feeling like, you need more.
Daisy Jones and the Six, like so many bands of that era, is the perfect dose of entertainment and while audiences may move on shortly after, the music will continue to play on.
Now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.