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Daniel "Spud" Murphy is the tritagonist of Irvine Welsh's Trainspotting series.
He first appears as the deuteragonist in the 1993 novel Trainspotting, its 1996 film adaptation, the tritagonist of the novel's sequel Porno and its 2017 film adaptation T2: Trainspotting and the 2012 prequel novel Skagboys.
He was portrayed by Ewen Bremner in the films.
Spud is a petty, dim-witted, thief, drug addict and hopeless romantic. However he actually isn't a bad person and does mean well, has shown various moments of heroism and is probably the most good natured out of all of his friends. He is also a constant scapegoat to crimes he did not commit alone yet still remains a loyal person, he proves his true heroism after he saves Mark Renton and Simon "Sick Boy" Williamson by knocking Francis Begbie unconscious just before the latter was about to kill them.
Spud is a member of Renton's group of friends. He is addicted to heroin and regularly commits acts of petty theft to support his habit. He is in a rocky relationship with Gail Houston (Alison Lozinska in the book). He is seen attending outings with Renton, Sick Boy, Francis Begbie and Tommy Mackenzi to pubs and nightclubs. His relationship with Gail largely fizzles out after soiling himself in bed and accidentally getting her entire family covered in it the following morning.
When Renton relapses back into his addiction, Spud joins him and Sick Boy on a crime spree which ends with his and Renton's arrest. As Murphy has prior convictions for theft, he is sentenced to a six month sentence at Saughton Prison while Mark receives a suspended sentence dependent on his completion of a rehabilitation program.
Following his release, Danny is broke and lonely. Word spreads to Sick Boy and Begbie that Mikey Forrester has acquired a large amount of heroin and is desperately trying to get rid of it. They ask Spud to help them convince Mark into financing the purchase, so that they might sell it for a profit to an associate of Sick Boy's in London. Renton relents, and Spud goes with him, Simon, and Begbie to London. After selling the heroin and making £16,000, a fight in a pub is caused by Begbie after a man accidentally knocked into him and apologized before getting tired of Begbie's attitude and insulting him. In a fit of rage Begbie attacks the man, Spud attempts to intervene and ends up with his hand sliced open. That night in the hotel Renton steals the £16,000 and leaves, before noticing Spud who is visibly hurt by his betrayal and leaves him £4,000 since he was the only truly good one out of them all in his eyes and who hadn't done anything wrong while already being a scapegoat to one of Renton's crimes, before fleeing the city. Sick Boy and Franco are furious with the betrayal, whilst Spud finds the £4,000 in a locker left by Renton and keeps it quiet and to himself.
In the sequel Spud is aspiring to be a writer and is still addicted to heroin. He is still angry at Renton for his betrayal despite being left with some of the share and has been shown to not be able to keep up a steady job or even a stable life due to his constant poor time keeping which was ultimately caused by the daylight savings clock changes to which Spud was unaware of. Later he is pressured by Begbie into telling him what Renton had left him, Begbie also mockingly laughs at his book like everyone else does. At the end of the movie he is seen at his finest hour after knocking Begbie unconscious with a toilet bowl after the latter attempted to kill Renton. He, Renton and Sick Boy then lock Begbie in the boot of a car and leave him for the police to find. He shows his works to Gail who tells him she thought of a title for the books.
- In the second movie Spud's book is a metaphor of Irvine Welsh himself and his trilogy of books.