There are two reasons why I get happy every time Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and Edgar Wright make a movie together. 1) It means Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and Edgar Wright made a new movie together, and even if The World’s End was only half as good as Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz, it’d still be one of the most imaginative, funny comedies of the year. (Lucky for us, it’s great.) 2) It gives me a good reason to go back and watch Spaced.
Not that I need a reason, because Spaced is awesome. Long before an entire industry was built around plastering “NERD” on the back of sweatpants, Pegg’s Tim was screaming at a kid for enjoying The Phantom Menace. Nerdom was an important part of Spaced, but unlike The Big Bang Theory, the X-Files references came second to genuine character development. Tim wasn’t a Marvel fan because a producer told Wright to make him a geek; he just liked Marvel because he liked Marvel. Having Nick Frost as a militant who tried to single-handedly invade Paris on a tank, as well as the daffy Twist, chainsmoking Marsha, and tortured artist Brian, around helped, too.
That being said: the references were pretty great. Here are 10 of the best.
1. Y’know, with the thumb and the molten…
2. Not “haha” funny, but “cute” funny: on the show, Tim draws album covers for a band called God’s Third Leg; in real life, Simon Pegg was the drummer for God’s Third Leg when he was 16. Also, dick joke.
3. Tim, perfectly summing up “Time Warp” from The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
4. Not a specific reference, but series one’s “Art” inspired Wright and Pegg to write Shaun of the Dead.
5. Lethal Weapon 2‘s toilet bomb = Spaced‘s man possibly sitting on a dog.
6. In a famous scene from The X-Files, Scully’s dog Queequeg is eaten by an alligator. After Daisy’s dog Colin goes missing, Tim blames a crocodile, “or something. Cements the allusion, since crocodiles and alligators are often mistaken for one another.”
7. This entire Pulp Fiction homage.
8. Bow to the Buffy.
9. Pick your favorite Star Wars reference. There are enough of them to fill a six-minute compilation (I’m partial to the discussion about how the Star Destroyer gunner is the most important character in the series.)
10. Upon being unknowingly surrounded by predators…
Check out Spaced here. It’s awesome.