Greg Daniels, creator of ‘The Office,’ talks about his odd sitcom ‘Upload.’
When Greg Daniels was a writer on “SNL” from 1987 to 1990, he acquired the concept for his Amazon series “Upload.”
“I was really attempting to come up with a comedy for SNL, and this was so long ago that CDs were being advertised as the next great thing – all of your music digitised,” Daniels, 58, told The Washington Post. “I thought to myself, ‘What else might be digitised? What if we could digitise ourselves?'” It would be a way for us to build our own version of paradise. And I thought to myself, ‘Well, if we did it ourselves, we’d mess it up.’ It would be like any other product rollout. ‘That’s a great funny notion, but it’s larger,’ I said.
“Upload,” a sci-fi comedy set in the near future in which individuals may “upload” their mind into a virtual afterlife after death, is now in its second season (premiering Friday, March 11 on Prime Video). They may still contact live loved ones via phone and video chats, and the benefits and luxury of their afterlife realms vary depending on how much they spend.
The storey concerns Nathan (Robbie Amell), a computer programmer who, after his tragic death, finds himself living in the opulent Lake View afterlife — courtesy to his affluent and vacuous lover, Ingrid (Allegra Edwards). He discovers that he was slain as he explores his new surroundings and develops a love for Nora (Andy Allo), his live customer service agent. Season 2 opens with Nathan and Nora separated due to a misunderstanding, with Ingrid “Uploaded” herself to cling to Nathan indefinitely, much to Nathan’s chagrin.
“I presented it as a romantic comedy satiric science fiction philosophical murder mystery,” Daniels explained. “I joked in the pitch that I was going to try to meld all of these genres together.” But as a spectator, I believed it was something I’d like. Overall, it’s a romantic comedy that’s entertaining, but you’ve been thrown off by the strange sci-fi horror elements peppered throughout.”
Daniels, who is also renowned for “The Simpsons” and “The Office,” said he drew inspiration for Nathan and Nora’s relationship on “Upload” from the latter.
“I had a lot of fun building the Jim and Pam relationship [on ‘The Office’] across multiple seasons, and the key to it is having difficulties.” So, when I started thinking about “What would be a significant obstacle?” I realised that the fact that Nathan is dead, has no physical body, and is just uploaded and living in the cloud, hosted by a software business, while Nora is alive and living in Queens is a very large one to overcome. It might also have the melancholy sense you get when you can’t see a way for them to reconcile.”
“That’s a peculiar aspect about it.” Although it is set in the future, the programme is catching up to the future.”