Daria: The Complete Animated Series
One of the best things about the original ‘Daria’ animated series on MTV was the music. Moody, alternative classics from the 90’s created the background for this brilliant portrait of an alienated young girl and made the show a true work of art. So what did the group of former Nobel Laureates who call the shots at MTV decide to leave out of the new box-set collection? Only 99% of the original music. I guess bands like the Sugarcubes and 4 Non Blondes have seriously outrageous royalty rates.
There is even a little apology note as soon as you open the box – which might be better on the outside of the box. Still, there is alot to appreciate about this collection. Daria was as much of a cultural outsider and rebel as animated classics like Beavis and Butthead, with a much higher level of intelligence and razor sharp social commentary which could be dismissed as nothing more than the smart-ass ramblings of an outsider. But that would be a mistake. Daria’s journey through the shallow world of suburban America, and her sarcastic narration of life in the hellishly clique-ish world of high school, is a powerful expression of teen angst and dismay that struck a nerve with an entire generation.
“Sure, I have a self-esteem problem,” Daria says in one of the first episodes. “I have low esteem for everyone else” Lines like this are just throw-aways that never cease in this brilliantly written show. Daria and her best friend Jane are two of the coolest, funniest and hippest female characters ever written for Television. That alone is reason enough to pick up this DVD box set – not to mention the large list of bonus features.
The box set includes:
- All five seasons (65 episodes) plus both movies (“Is It Fall Yet?” and “Is It College Yet?”)
- The pilot episode, “Sealed With a Kick” (previously available only on the first Daria VHS video release)
- Mystik Spiral’s “Freakin’ Friends” video
- “Daria Day” intros
- “Top Ten Video Countdown” hosted by Daria and Jane
- Cast and crew interviews
- A never-before-seen Mystik Spiral spin-off script
- Oh, and that nice apology note about the music.
I have thoroughly enjoyed watching these episodes again. It is like a nostalgia-powered time machine back to my college days – only without the bong that was taller than me and the roommate who slept through an entire semester and still got better grades than me.