Interview with Timewasters creator and actor Daniel Lawrence Taylor: “We see another side of Nick as he enters a world where he’s amongst his jazz heroes.”
The show follows a four-piece South London jazz band who travel back in time. In Series 2 of ITV2’s sitcom Timewasters, we see them transported to 1950’s London. The band quickly decide to start a jazz club to rival others.
Speaking to Telly Binge, Daniel (who plays Nick) says his character is like a new person. “Nick takes a bigger journey this time around. In Series 1, he was extremely uncomfortable in the 20s and was scared of everything. He wanted nothing more than to get out as soon as the time machine was fixed.”
“In this new series, we see another side of Nick. He enters a world where he’s amongst his jazz heroes like Dizzy, Louis, Ella and the one and only General L. Hands. At the same time, Rock n Roll is slowly taking over so Nick tasks himself with changing history and making jazz popular music.”
“I am a little bit like my character and don’t have a massive love for Rock n Roll. I found myself writing from a place of truth.”
The band start a club to aid that ambition, “He opens up a music joint in Victoria’s air raid shelter, where she used to entertain the boys in the war. The club struggles a fair amount to start with.”
“Lauren has a few ideas to bring in the punters – like turn it into a strip club. Nick struggles with it, as it goes against all his purist jazz principles – but it’s successfully bringing in a crowd.”
Whilst the show is a sitcom, the actor says he did do the proper research. “I always start with the period, context and historical facts, as it generates ideas to bounce off potential storylines. The Windrush Scandal in 2018 kicked off whilst I was writing the show – so I found a lot of material was landing in my lap.”
“I already had a lot of love for the period, as older generators in my family migrated from home in the West Indies to Britain. The Lonely Londoner by Samuel Selvon is probably my favourite book about this era – so it was nice to read it again for both research and pleasure.”
The ITV2 series has been well received from young viewers – with it being officially the most-watched digital channel comedy series. “I think young audiences respond to friend-gang shows like Inbetweeners, Plebs and Derry Girls - because they enjoy seeing characters on screen messing about like they do with their friends.”
“Timewasters is about a time travelling jazz band, but at the very core of this show is a group of friends having fun.”
Recently the actor (known for 2015 series Cockroaches) has been promoting his two new audio comedies. The Thickness along with Black Boy Fly have been wrote for BBC Radio 4, “I’m a big fan of telling stories on different platforms as I love exploring different ways of telling a story.”
“They are very different to Timewasters as they’re comedy dramas and not at all high concept. They are similar in that they are character led and look at the Black British experience. If you’re looking to have a bit of a laugh and a cry, give them a listen.”
Moving forward and Daniel hopes to make a US remake of Timewasters. “LL Cool J is looking to produce it, so fingers crossed that we get it off the ground.”
“I’ve already started working on Timewasters Series 3. It has not been commissions yet but I want to hit the ground running for if we get the green light. I’ve got loads of great ideas for our band in their third adventure, so hopefully we’ll jump in the time machine for another outing.”
Timewasters Series 2 will premiere on ITV2 on Monday March 11 at 10pm with a double bill. You can re-watch Series 1 on ITV Hub.