Saffron and Peri

Saffron and Peri is a fantasy comedy created by Jenan Al-Dayyen and Sara J. Nelson. Al-Dayyen writes the show, and plays Peri; Nelson produces it and plays Saffron. The show takes classic fairytale elements and transports them into a modern setting – Saffron is a fairy godmother, and Peri is a djinnia. There are also mermaids, magic mirrors, goblins, and many other familiar creatures from different fairy tales.

Right at the beginning of episode 1, the comedic dynamic between Saffron and Peri is established. Peri works in the Magic Support Department, a kind of helpline, that Saffron calls when she needs help. One of my initial reactions when I first started listening to the show was how much I loved Saffron’s chaotic energy. She frantically calls Peri on her work phone, and then on her personal number, for help with a zombie. The details on how the zombie actually came to exist are only vague at this point. Peri is all too used to this kind of behaviour from Saffron, and can even predict when her next call will arrive. After Saffron flies off, Peri receives another call – from a person called Tristan. And here begins season one’s plot arc.

In Saffron and Peri there’s a main storyline which develops throughout the course of each season, and in season one, this involves Tristan and his school assignment. Tristan is a first year student who’s studying to be a fairygodparent – the only male student on the course, studying for a job which is traditionally only done by women. He calls Peri for help with his assignment, and after some initial reluctance on Peri’s part, she decides to sneakily help him – and also asks Saffron, an actual fairy godmother, to become his new mentor.

This leads to dealings with a frog prince, conflict with mermaids, and the audience discovering that fairies enjoy partying.

Tristan’s story develops during season 2, where, without spoiling too much, more familiar fantasy elements come into play, going beyond just those of traditional fairy tales. Season 3 is an interesting departure from the fantasy setting we become used to, before returning to Tristan’s school in season 4.

One of my favourite moments of the show is ‘ringy ringy’. You’ll know when you get to it! It particularly tickled me, and is one of my favourite comedic moments out of all the fiction podcasts I’ve listened to.

As well as writing Saffron and Peri, Al-Dayyen is also a talented artist, and has created some gorgeous artwork of the characters in the show, which you can see on her Tumblr and Deviantart.

Saffron and Peri is an adorable show. It’s often one I see mentioned when people talk about or ask for recommendations for feel-good shows. Both Saffron and Peri are delightful characters and (spoilers!) the show is all about finding that fairytale happy ending after going through challenges, and facing adversity.

Oh, and make sure you always listen right to the end of the episodes for post-credit goodies!

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