Let’s make no bones about it: I love Spaced. Before I ever met any of the people involved in the show I fell deeply in love with it. My love affair began with a bootleg copy of Shaun of the Dead, which I watched with CHUD’s own Andre Dellamorte and Innocent X before the film was available in the US. When the film came out in the US I saw it again at a press screening, and paid to see it a third time. In between those screenings I interviewed the whole team – Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost – for the first time and learned of the existence of Spaced.
I ordered the DVD of Spaced from Amazon.uk as soon as possible. I bought a region free player just for that purpose. I devoured the series, and was embarrassingly moved by the ending of the documentary, where Tim and Daisy are seen in the present day as a couple with a baby. For a long time I was a big supporter of Spaced series three, or maybe a Spaced movie, and I have to admit that I didn’t quite understand Edgar and Simon’s reluctance to go back to that. Every time I spoke to those guys, on the record or off, I either asked about Spaced series three or barely held myself back from doing so.
The reasons are obvious: these folks (including Jessica Hynes, who I only met this summer and thus did not include in the previous paragraph about badgering these guys) are geniuses, and no one has ever produced a piece of entertainment that felt so perfectly aimed at me. That got me – too many shows and movies made for geeks had been (and still are) pandering. It was rare to see a show or a movie that felt like it was made by someone who was into the same things I was, and where when a reference was dropped it felt like it was because that’s a reference the creators would drop in real life. And the nerd stuff in the show wasn’t a social stigma – Tim and Daisy weren’t total dweebs, they were regular, cool people with the same interests I had. I’m not usually looking for my entertainment to validate me and reflect me, but it’s nice when it does.
So wanting more of the same from these people was obvious, and I feel like it might be a want that more Americans are feeling now that the complete Spaced is available on DVD in Region 1. I know that feeling of tearing through the scant 14 episodes and, while you’re technically satisfied with the lovely ending, wanting more. I first saw Spaced when I was a bit older than the characters (although they’re essentially my age) and I wanted to know what Tim was like in his 30s. I wanted to see he and Daisy fall in love. I wanted to see them have that baby girl, who is not named Luke despite Tim’s best efforts. I wanted to have these characters continue.
But in the last few years my opinion has slowly changed. I’ve listened to Simon and Edgar give their reasons, and it sort of sunk in. The beauty of Spaced is that while it was obviously written brilliantly by Simon and Jessica, it was also lived by them. Listen to the commentaries on the DVD and you’ll see how so many episodes were informed by their lives and by who they were at the time. It demands amazing talent to take things as personal as those experiences and make them universal, but the writing duo, with the ever-brilliant cinematic eye of Edgar, made that almost seem easy. The thing is that the people who Simon and Jessica (and Edgar and Nick) have become may not be the same people Tim and Daisy became.
Here’s what might very well happen: they’d be writing stories for these characters instead of relaying truths through these characters. Those stories would probably be hilarious and great, but I understand the reluctance to come back with anything less than the very best. And if Simon and Jessica aren’t really Tim and Daisy anymore, they won’t be coming back with the very best. Only the very damn good.
So I mentioned earlier that I met Jessica for the first time this summer, at a party at Comic Con. First things first: I swooned. She’s so pretty and so smart and so funny; I’ve had a crush on Daisy since I saw my first episode of Spaced, and now I have one on Jessica too (which makes sense really). But second, I watched Jessica and Simon interact, and there’s so much magic there. I don’t know that I want to see Spaced series three or a Spaced movie, but I do want to see these two collaborate again, and to work with Edgar on something.
I want to see them work on something that reflects who they are now. Watching these two together (and listening to them on the new DVD commentaries) convinces me that there’s still gold to be mined in that collaboration, that these two people, when teamed with Edgar, can still produce something hilarious and touching in equal measure. I don’t presume to say what form that collaboration would take – a movie, a TV show, a series of internet-only sock puppet pornographic adventures – but I do presume to say that it could be great.
Of course this could all be academic. While stumping for the Spaced Region 1 DVD, the trio did say that they had ideas for whatever became of Tim and Daisy (even if they’re at odds for how to bring those ideas to life – check this latest MTV interview, the spark for this Advocate, for more), so maybe they’ll prove me dead wrong and come out with a stellar new series or movie of Spaced and show that the voices of Tim and Daisy are voices Simon and Jessica will never lose.
In the meantime, though, instead of constantly pestering these guys about getting together for a new Spaced, let’s start pestering them about getting together for a new anything. Sure, we all want those characters to continue, but what we really need is for Jessica and Simon and Edgar to continue as a creative force. Here’s hoping that someday soon they’ll be back for a reunion and it’ll speak to us in our 30s (or 40s. I’ll be patient) as wonderfully as Spaced did to us in our 20s.
digg_url = 'http://digg.com/television/Was_two_series_of_SPACED_enough ';