Simon Pegg, Jessica Hynes, Mark Heap
14 episodes 3 DVDs
BBC / Warner Home Video 2008
Spaced is a very odd British situation comedy that made it to America thanks to the Comicon fandom base of comic book “graphic novel” enthusiasts and of fans of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz. The fancom base is because Tim Bisley (Simon Pegg of Hot Fuzz and the 2009 Star Trek movie fame) the main character is a graphic novel artist.
The fact Spaced has many references only nerds and geeks will get also adds to the appeal. This is a show the plastic pocket protector crowd will enjoy tremendously while the rest of us mortals will like it.
This is a fun show though the opening sequence is always a bit more interesting than the rest of the episodes. Spaced is the story of two twenty-somethings Tim Bisley and Daisy Steiner (Jessica Hynes aka Stevenson) find themselves without a place to live.
To get a flat they must pretend to be a married couple so as to meet the requirements of strange landlady Marsha. Daisy is a writer who doesn’t write anything and one of those people who tell never ending stories. Also thrown in for more comedy are a very strange basement dwelling artist named Brian (Mark Heap) and Daisy’s friend Twist who “works in the fashion industry” at a dry cleaners.
A lot of the interest in Spaced is in how original the show is in its visual and aural effects. Tim and Daisy do not quite see the world as the rest of us and the world does not seem them as quite normal and this is reflected in camera angles and the many moments where you see what the characters are thinking or imagining.
It is also very episodic within each episode so each show is more a collage of short bits than a single arced story although there are those too. For example episode 5 (Spaced DVD 1) where the gang saves Colin the dog from a place that experiments on animals is complete and quite good.
Another forte of this British TV comedy is it does not linger long with a joke. For example Daisy gets a job interview and there are six or seven gags in less than three minutes before the interview is over when she answers if she is a pint or shots kind of girl.
Spaced The Complete Series features all Season 1 and 2 episodes on 2 DVDs. Each season’s disc includes commentary tracks, outtakes, an homage-o-meter and other minor stuff.
Spaced DVD 3 is all extra features including a documentary on this British TV comedy, footage of the 2007 cast reunion, a Q & A bit, deleted scenes, more outtakes, and more minor stuff.
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