Sex Drugs and Rock and Roll. When Daisy Jones & The Six hit the small screens on Amazon Prime Video, it had everyone glued to their screens, foot tapping, and digging through closets to find those bell bottoms they thought they had. Starring Riley Keough as Daisy Jones and Sam Claflin as her dark troubled bandmate, Billy Dunne, the show exceeded expectations and brought the colorful, 70s, California music scene to 2023.
Daisy Jones & The Six was developed by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber whose works include: 500 Days of Summer, The Fault in Our Stars, and Paper Towns. With such a successful track record not only as a duo, but in the art of adapted screenplays, the show was sure to be another triumph. The adaptation, based on the novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid, was released in weekly increments, two episodes at a time.
When the book was released in 2019, it was swiftly picked up by Reece Witherspoon and her production company Hello Sunshine. From there, the book began its extensive journey to bring the characters to life and allow the songs to ‘sing.’ However, Reid felt hugely pressured in the casting of these characters, for the Daisy Jones fanbase already had a life of it’s own. But, when Riley Keough stepped on the scene, Reid knew she had found her Daisy Jones. She even went as far as to say “I might have written the book for her and not have known it.”
From that point onwards the star studded cast began to come together, including Camila Morrone, Suki Waterhouse, Will Harrison, Josh Whitehouse and Sebastian Chacon as the rest of “The Six.” Sam Clafflin was the last to be cast, but undoubtedly the missing piece that brought everyone together. The stars then endured an 18 month ‘band-camp’ in order to create the authentic band sound that we hear not only though our screens, but also on their debut album, Aurora, released with Atlantic Records.
What makes this show so different is the detail, rehearsal, preparation and execution of the music and the acting. Taylor Jenkins Reid researched a plethora of 70s rock bands in preparation for writing the book and even included her own song lyrics in the final chapters to accompany the book’s storyline. Artists such as Marcus Mumford, Blake Mills and Phoebe Bridgers also assisted in the show’s songwriting process, manifesting in the country/folk/rock songs that now run circles around our heads.
The book, as well as the series, was particular influenced by the tumultuous tale of Fleetwood Mac. The lusting, dangerous nature of Billy and Daisy’s onstage (and offstage!) relationship was said to have been inspired majorly by the band’s 1997 live performance of Silver Springs. With Sam Claflin’s experience with adapted screenplays (Love Rosie, The Hunger Games, Me Before You) and Riley Kenough’s rockstar genes, being granddaughter to Elvis Presley, the coupling was destined for success.
Although the book differs largely from the movie, with some characters’ storylines changed, and some having not existed at all, the adaptation was more than Taylor Jenkins Reid could have hoped for. The combination of incredible support behind the scenes, as well as the undeniable chemistry between each and every cast member, meant that it would beyond do the book justice.
I had started reading Daisy Jones & The Six at the beginning of this year yet had to put it down, as school work got in the way. However, I was so completely enthralled with the show, that I had to finish the book as I could not possibly wait weeks to find out the ending! If you are someone who enjoys reading, I highly recommend reading the book. The detail and tangent storylines only add to the perception of the characters you will already learn to know and love.
Although, with this book and series (unlike others) I do not believe one needs to be done before the other. Taylor Jenkins Reid herself said that the image of who Daisy Jones and Billy Dunne were in her head have completely disappeared leaving behind the images of Riley and Sam.
This will not be the final on screen adaptation by Reid to grace our screens as she is currently working on a Netflix film version of her bestselling book, The Seven Husband of Evelyn Hugo. Although there is no definitive cast or release date, it is confirmed to be in the works, and highly anticipated.
Although the show is over, this may not be the last you hear of Daisy Jones & The Six. Some of the show’s actors have been posting teasers, photos and videos from suspicious rehearsals causing fans to speculate the idea of a Daisy Jones tour. If so, maybe it’s time to rifle a little deeper through that closest, squeeze into those bell bottoms, and live out your 70s flower power dream.