Well, after IRC, checking e-mail and the message board, I seem to be writing the dissenting opinion in an 8 to 1 decision.
For those of you impervious to analogy: I didn't like it much.
This episode never seemed to get funny to me.
Maybe I'm biased - I've been in Daria's place too many times to find
this sort of thing funny - but this just didn't make me laugh much.
Daria really didn't seem to be herself much throughout the episode.
Now, I know the artists and writers wing quite a bit of the show,
but I really, really hope they have some sort of character
sketches for the writers to work off. If they do, they should pay
attention to them. I can see her getting frustrated about Quinn's
pseudo-intellectual popularity, and upset, but not depressed. The
ending really doesn't sit well with me. (Side note: What was up with
her eyes? Well, I guess this was drawn in Korea...) The "beat her
at her own game" method was not the way she should have handled this.
I mean, why let a chance to totally humiliate Quinn pass by? Trick
her into Knowledge Bowl (tell her the winner gets a shopping spree
at Cashmans or something) and make sure all her friends are there
to see her go down in flames. Reveal her for what she is, there wasn't
any need to stoop to her level.
Jane seems to be getting all the good lines lately. What
happened to Daria's snide retorts? "No, but she'll have to watch out
for ferrets building a nest in her head." Daria makes a good straight
man, but I like her sarcastic comments, bring them back!
There were some good things... Daria was reading Catch 22, which I figured would be on her reading list. It wasn't very appropriate to the episode, but the writer probably wasn't trying for that. Having Andrea and Jesse in the Alter Egos means that maybe we'll see more of them (Andrea was in the background at lunch, btw). Unfortunately, Jodie and Mack have been in the alter egos from the start, and we barely see them at all.
Three episodes is a bit small for a reliable sampling, but this season isn't off to the best start. No episodes I'd place on my favourites list ("Cafe Disaffecto," "The Misery Chick," and "Pinch Sitter" just has to get a mention for the ending), and this one I'd place down with "The Lab Brat," my least favourite episode.