Now we’re talking! The first three episodes of Daisy Jones & The Six left fans desiring more substance. In episodes four through six, a story has finally begun to take shape.
All throughout the previous episodes, it felt as though Daisy Jones & The Six didn’t quite know how to function. In the scenes where Daisy Jones (Riley Keough) and the band had yet to form the titular group, Daisy felt awkward at most. Much of the first few episodes also differed in tone compared to the book. It was watered down and sanitized as opposed to the “sex, drugs, rock ‘n roll” quality that Taylor Jenkins Reid had vividly depicted in the source material. But once Daisy comes into the picture permanently, the adaptation welcomes the grit many loved about the story to begin with.
Now their careers are taking off thanks to her involvement with the band, and they’re profiting off their hard work. There is a problem, however. Billy Dunne (Sam Claflin) doesn’t like Daisy, or so he wants us to believe. On the surface, Billy isn’t fond of their new lead singer because she challenges him. In reality, Daisy has him experiencing feelings that he can’t quite understand.
Daisy’s presence changes the dynamic for everybody in the group. Daisy welcomes distractions, while Billy would rather stay sharp. She lives and breathes metaphor, and he would rather be straightforward. That’s how he led the band. Nobody questioned Billy’s direction of the band until Daisy stepped in and was brave enough to call him out. The rest of the crew doesn’t mind her involvement because of this. Karen Sirko (Suki Waterhouse) is happy to have another woman around. Warren Rojas (Sebastian Chacón) is in his own world. And Eddie Roundtree (Josh Whitehouse) is glad to have someone willing to oppose Billy.
Much like Fleetwood Mac, Daisy Jones & The Six as a band finds their greatest hits in Billie and Daisy writing songs that speak to their experiences and how they view each other. Billie writes “More Fun To Miss” while Daisy rebuttals with “Regret Me.” When it comes to “Let Me Down Easy,” it’s the first song they write together. This changes the trajectory of their future forever. When they’re good, they’re good. When they’re bad … Well, Billy doesn’t value Daisy or her contributions. He’s too distracted by the fear of what she does to him and what he could potentially do to himself again.
When Daisy and Billy mesh, it’s magic. When they’re at odds, it’s explosive. You may agree they’re not meant for each other, but their relationship keeps you hooked, secretly hoping that maybe, just maybe … it could all work out. That’s part of the book’s charm, but it’s the main reason the show works. It also helps that Riley Keough and Sam Claflin have a unique chemistry that electrifies every scene they share. It instantly sparks unmistakable life into what started off as vaguely underwhelming.
Many of the core conflicts in Daisy Jones & The Six settle themselves throughout the course of these three episodes. Simone Jackson (Nabiyah Be) leaves for New York to be with Bernie (Ayesha Harris). This leaves Daisy truly on her own. There’s no one ready to pull her back if she tiptoes over the abyss. Riley Keough shines in these episodes as Daisy is increasingly challenged as a character. “I had the number one song in the country, and not a single person to celebrate it with,” Daisy shares right before breaking into the childhood home that her parents have vacated without her knowing.
Then there’s Camila Dunne (Camila Morrone). Left alone to raise a child, her trust in Billy falters as Daisy gets more involved as a member. She changed her entire life to support her husband and The Six. Now she realizes that she deserves her own life. It should involve a partner that realizes how lucky he is to be with a woman like her.
Daisy may have improved the band, but Camila is the glue that holds it all together. She challenged Billy’s ego first and even convinced Daisy to stay. Daisy Jones & The Six owes its success to Camila. But Daisy as well. She gave The Six a number-one song.
Despite its early bumps, Daisy Jones & The Six is a wonder. The direction of photography, split between Checo Varese and Jeff Cutter, works wonderfully, instantly transporting the viewer. As part of the vision of costume designer Denise Wingate, the show’s wardrobe makes the characters believable, especially Keough as Daisy Jones. It helps immensely that the actors learned how to play the instruments and actually apply the vocals to their characters when needed. Daisy Jones & The Six has a strong layer of authenticity, making it an irreplaceable adaptation.
In the end, Daisy Jones & The Six is a story of two souls that find themselves entangled, mirroring each other and revealing the very worst in one another before they can acknowledge their best or the good. Now we must wonder what the downfall of a band that seemed to be heading straight to the hall of fame will be. From what we know, it appears that Daisy Jones & The Six is building up to what will hopefully be a promising ending.