Daria never needed a boyfriend.

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010 by Rachel

I just finished watching the complete series of Daria, plus the two movies Is It Fall Yet? and Is It College Yet? This is a DVD set that I’ve been waiting for and wanting for years. And now that I’ve got it? I’m sure of only one thing—Daria never needed a boyfriend.


The first two seasons are solid. These are the ones especially that I remember when I think about the good-ole-watchin-Daria times. These are the ones with gym class, Trent-crushing (my all-time favorite episode with Daria piercing her bellybutton to impress him), and general witty banter. When we got to season three last week, Derrick and I played Monopoly. These episodes weren’t worth watching with 100% attention, and many of them were blatant fillers (for example, the musical episode, which was unnecessary, unfunny, and unfitting to the show).


The biggest change happens in between seasons three and four. First, the “filming” changes. The animation is visibly different, as the “camera” moves differently with character motions, in addition to simpler changes like bolder lines of character drawings. If you don’t notice or aren’t bothered by the bolder lines, watch out for when Quinn’s shirt changes from the short-sleeved happy face tee to the long-sleeved butterfly shirt. This one single unnecessary wardrobe alteration represents how unnecessary all of the other alterations were to me.


Second, Daria gets a boyfriend. The show shifts from a more episodic formula (i.e. Seinfeld) to a sitcom formula (i.e. Dawson’s Creek). You can’t just pick up an episode anymore. There’s an actual plot that revolves around the love triangle of Daria, Jane, and Tom. And, for the most part, I don’t care! Yes, Tom’s a smart guy, sort of a slacker, and he’s sometimes witty and funny, but I never understand Daria’s initial attraction for him. Because I don’t buy this, I don’t buy a relationship that carries on through seasons four,five and through the two movies. I never needed a love interest—this wasn’t why I liked the show. I understand that Daria was growing up and that sometimes antisocial outcasts DO get boyfriends (we know I did!), but why Tom? Could he have been a teeny bit more likeable? And why did he stick around so long?


Read the rest of this entry »