Daisy Jones and The Six Tracks 7–8, FINALLY! SIMONE (Nabiyah Be!)!!!! YES! We love to see it! I am OBSESSED with how Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber have adapted Simone’s side part into a whole new world. Watching Simone shine in the New York disco scene and living her Queer life is everything! She’s shy about it, but it’s bold how they’ve written and carved out a piece in this world to give this Black woman her own life. It was always devastating in the novel that Daisy Jones (Riley Keough) was the whole centre of Simone’s story when there was so much to her character that was interesting in its own right.
Daisy Jones and The Six Episode 7 balances a fine line between showing a tropey black woman caretaker and a queer black woman in her world. Despite the obvious imbalance in Daisy and Simone’s friendship and the disinterest Daisy shows in how she’s interrupted her friend’s success, I think Daisy Jones and The Six carefully dissects that dynamic near the end of our time in Greece when Daisy and Simone have their major conflict. Watching how the privileged Daisy Jones shuts down opportunities thrown at her while Simone fights tooth and nail to get to where she is is fascinating.
It’s also the world that Episode 7 introduces us to in Greece, where there’s this clash between aristocratic, elitist artists who don’t need to write or create for money and call their work “pure” because of that. It screams the disconnect between worlds, and we see how Daisy is being manipulated by these people and her own arrogance while Simone struggles to watch. It never feels like these differences severely jade Simone, but the evidence is in how she’s constantly thinking about how this life they live in Greece is just a vacation, and it must end.
I like Bernie (Ayesha Harris). She represents an exciting piece of Queer history that perhaps period pieces of this time might ignore when the central characters are all white. Bernie reminds me of Prime Video’s A League of Their Own’s Max (Chanté Adams), toeing the line of masculinity and bending gender rules in a time when it wasn’t accepted. But she’s also keener to be open about her relationship with Simone. She wants to have what straight people have and be loud and proud about their relationship in New York. It’s an admirable attempt at a conversation about closeted communities in New York at this time. Still, as much as we get to see and experience the joy of it all, the truth and the danger isn’t being shown or shadowing every move they make. This might have been a choice to lighten the mood of Simone’s story. Still, I do think, similar to how I felt about writers cutting the Vietnam storyline, that without the background of police brutality, their happiness and luck hold less significance and notable defiance.
Nicky (Gavin Drea), Daisy Jones’s fiancé…husband from Scottish aristocracy, is certainly manipulative in Daisy Jones and The Six Tracks 7–8. Still, it’s hard to say if they’ll be playing him off as a scam artist like his character is meant to be understood in the original material. However, as far as we’ve seen, he is NOT good for Daisy. He’s possessive of her and doesn’t want anyone else to have acceptable advice or input in Daisy’s life. Nicky certainly doesn’t want Billy Dunne (Sam Claflin) anywhere near her out of fear that their connection will overtake whatever he thinks he has with Daisy. Gavin Drea is much softer in his interpretation of this role than I had initially envisioned; however, by the end of Episode 8, we clearly see this man enabling Daisy in her spiral: feeding her barely anything but cocaine and champagne even when she wanted something else. Despite Nicky appearing much more subtle in his ways, we end up in a much more dire scenario than the novel ever offers. Daisy Jones ODs.
Billy’s constant pestering of Rod (Timothy Olyphant) to do something, to talk to Daisy as he watches her fall down the same hole he’d been down was carefully orchestrated by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, and I found Nzingha Stewart’s direction of Episode 8 phenomenal. Everything leading to the final minutes of that episode was well-performed and paced: the juxtaposition between the two buses, Daisy’s progressively worsening health, the subtle way Rob brought her food, the reaction from the rest of The Six, etc. If anything were to get Riley Keough and Sam Claflin Emmy nominations, it would be Episode 8.
I mean, I love Episode 7 because it brings back Simone, but I am OBSESSED with Episode 8 because of the performances, the drama, and the converging of storylines. It was so, so, so good. Camille’s (Camila Morrone) arrival on tour added an element to the already developing chaos. Eddie Loving (Josh Whitehouse) talking to her on the terrace was a little lacklustre compared to everything else going on around them, but I think it played as a reminder of what secrets are yet to be revealed. Karen (Suki Waterhouse) confessing her relationship with Graham (Will Harrison) to the rest of the group felt a little out of character. She went against them so much that she had already established what she wanted from their arrangement. Still, I also understand that if the writers felt it was something that realistically would be hard to hide, I don’t know why it was announced rather than something Warren (Sebastian Chacon) and Eddie could have deduced from living on a bus with them.
However, all in all, Daisy Jones and The Six Tracks 7–8 are, I believe, the best episodes so far. They deliver so much character development and story progression without feeling like we’re racing through the motions like the first three episodes. Que the applause.
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LOVE this recap, with comparisons to the source material and historical backdrop! I’ve definitely been missing some of the grit and historical elements that were there in the book, like Vietnam, as well- and my fingers are still crossed for some upcoming plot lines to remain in this adaptation- but expanding Simone’s story and letting us see the disco movement grow alongside her queer romance was all fantastic. I would watch a whole spinoff show about Simone and the birth of disco in NYC.
I was kind of thinking they seem to pick and choose when Daisy behaves like an addict or acts just the same as everyone else having a few lines while partying, but I was glad they went there this ep – and Daisy does OD in the book! It didn’t have Billy involved, though, which I thought actually worked really well in the show.
Anyway, killer recapping, thank you.
Episode 7 seemed out of place. Could’ve skipped it altogether and stayed with Daisy and the rest of the group. Disjointed in efforts to be inclusive. Sad
I agree it was done in a disjointed way- they could have woven Simone’s story in better- but she does go to get Daisy in (Italy instead of Greece) in the book. The book also says that she was a disco pioneer, so it’s def part of the original story too. I like that they let her story breathe and have her have a personality outside of rescuing Daisy all the time.
I have watched these episodes over and over again I think it’s very well script and I love the romance between Daisy and Billy keeps you on edge I feel they have a deep love for each other and hope it comes out in the end.