Daisy Jones and the Six Review


Amazon Studios

Daisy Jones & the Six is the latest (and greatest?) original series from Amazon Studios.

Annika Good, Staff Writer

Everyone knows of the legendary rock band Daisy Jones & the Six, but nobody knows the reason behind their sudden split at the peak of their stardom… until now. – Taylor Jenkins Reid

Daisy Jones & the Six is a mockumentary based on a Taylor Jenkins Reid bestseller, depicting the prolific rise and chaotic fall of a 1970s rock band. Though fictional, it takes much inspiration from Fleetwood Mac and captures the overall anachronistic theme of the rock-n-roll experience. In between everything, it manages to succeed in building the unique personalities of each individual character and the cross-currents between them all.   

The show follows four childhood best friends from Pittsburgh, brothers Billy (Sam Claflin) and Graham Dunne (Will Harrison), who form a band called The Six with hopes of escaping their hometown. Eventually, they make it to Los Angeles and are on the brink of all their glory when Billy’s addiction issues take over, sending him to rehab. 

When he gets released, their manager Teddy Price pairs the band up with a new Hollywood starlet Daisy Jones (Riley Keogh, who, to just mention, has Presley genes running through her blood), a charismatic, strikingly beautiful singer-songwriter who is the daughter of wealthy but absent parents. The love affair between Daisy and Billy is the show’s main focal point; therefore, the chemistry is enough to propel them to world-renowned notoriety. 

The novel is structured in a way that makes it television gold by showing the band members getting interviewed for a documentary twenty years after they broke up. Reece Witherspoon snatched the rights to the project and fabricated it under her production company Hello Sunshine. The result was a glitzy, 10-episode Prime Video adaptation, written by Scott Neustader and Micheal H. Webber and directed by James Ponsoldt. They kept the stylistic appeal and striking glamor – everything and everyone in it is inherently gorgeous; it’s enervating. 

But ultimately, they failed to capture one of Jenkin Reid’s specialties, making you care about this group of talented people who didn’t understand the trajectory of what they had till it was over. Leading to much disappointment that the show falls victim to a problem many books to movie adaptations do – declining when it needs to build more momentum. 

Though the episodes are filled with lively music and a timely aesthetic as it follows a group of young adults who rise to fame in the 70s, the show never truly comes to life as much as it did in the books. It’s big and fun, but it seems as if most of the book’s magic got lost on the way to filmland. It’s all a little too glossy and purified.

The struggles the characters go through in the novel are not being properly portrayed on the screen. For example, both Daisy and Billy’s addiction issues are being dialed down. In the book, addiction is a significant factor that’s heavily focused on, while in the show, it’s used as just another throwaway plotline.

The fractured relationships, the heartless rivalries, and the unforgivable betrayals. Those were the reasons the band fell apart, not some love affair.

There is also way too much focus on the love affair between Daisy and Billy instead of the band as a whole. The story is about a band, their dynamic, how they came together, and how they fell apart. The overall point of the band falling apart was not due to the main two members; however, it was a product of mistakes made by the band as a whole. The fractured relationships, the heartless rivalries, and the unforgivable betrayals. Those were the reasons the band fell apart, not some love affair.

Though the show has a few problems, the marketing was genius. Being a show about a band in the 70s obviously means that you need music that reflects that period, which is what happened.

Aurora, the band’s album in the novel, was brought to life in preparation for the release. With just eleven songs, the album was released on March 2, 2023, and is a little over 44 minutes long. “We finally have Aurora. A stunning, nostalgic, timeless album that captures the drama, pathos, and yearning of the band’s zenith and nadir all in one,” author Jenkins Reid shared in a Spotify short. “Daisy Jones and the Six are real. And they are better than [her] wildest dreams”.

Behind all the magic, artists such as Phoebe Bridgers, Maddison Cunningham, Marcus Mumford and Jackson Browne were among the real-life musicians who helped write the album. Though many fans were initially upset that the songs Jenkins Reid wrote for the book weren’t included in the record, they soon simmered down after they heard the final product.

At its most ambitious moments, Aurora garners that of Fleetwood Mac’s late 70s work. Now to say Aurora is even comparable to Rumors by Fleetwood Mac is just prosperous, but it has its moments. 

Daisy Jones and the Six remains a fun, lighthearted watch, especially for those into artistically styled projects such as Almost Famous. Plus, the songs are catchy and certainly worth listening to if you’re into that genre of music. The show is just another take on the standard Hollywood cliches: the legendary rock-n-roll experience filled with drinking, drugs, and loneliness.