Archived Ramblings

March 31, 1998


Well, at least it was funnier (marginally) than "Quinn the Brain." Another less-than-slightly-likely plot, continuations of several bad trends, and annoying supporting characters. Polo Andrea, in the credits, was the best part of the whole thing. Daria finally getting fed up and teaching Quinn a lesson was okay, but it sounded more like a slap fight than anything.

The only actual good part was a minor detail: Daria had a book with her when she was at the video arcade. This, at least, was in character, and since I'm the type who always has a book nearby, I can understand why she'd have one.

Okay, Daria meets this guy and likes him, so far so good. Then she starts reading about Goya to impress him... sure. Not a mention of Trent anywhere, and what has she ever done to try to impress him? If she really liked Ted enough to date him, she probably wouldn't act that way (based on past experiences). And no way would she ever let Quinn set her up, much less double-date with her. Daria's proven she's got a nasty enough grasp of the language to drive people off, why would it be any different with someone her parents picked out?
Of course, if she was forced to date someone or else her parents would set something up, well, that's one way I can see her finally breaking the ice and asking Trent. It's certainly more plausible than her hanging around Quinn.

In other words, I thought the plot was horrible. No real subplots in this one, and it wasn't very funny joke-wise. It almost certainly will appeal more to MTV's normal viewers, which is why this show needs to get off this network, unless it's already too late. A sort of basic MTV-ness is starting to permeate the characters, and if this trend isn't halted soon, this show won't be worth watching any longer.
Sadly, I bet pictures of Daria blushing will be only slightly less popular than pictures of Daria-in-Quinn's-clothing.

Leaving aside the question of whether there was Network interference in the show or if this is actually the direction the creators want it to take, there are still a couple nasties from the last several episodes that I've got to mention.
In this episode we didn't just have the new male turn out as a 'loser,' we didn't just have the other males portrayed as morons, we didn't just have males beaten up by females, we didn't just have some nasty comments about males. No, we had the new male turn out to be a 'loser,' and the other males portrayed as morons, and the males beaten up by females, and the general male-bashing. Jane's comment about the swords was over the top, and all of these are just general trends with the show that have been growing worse this season. The writers, one at least (Chris may be female, but Sam probably isn't), are even male! This is (was, anyway) a show that tries to make fun of people like Mr. O'Neill and Mrs. Barch, don't let them on the staff!
The only real possibility of a decent male character is the Token Black Guy, Mack. (Lerman was nice, but since he'll never be seen again, doesn't quite count.) They can't portray him too negatively or they'll have a nasty lawsuit or three on their hands.
For a show about an "outsider and proud of it" character, this PC "women are at least as equal as men" crap is getting tired quick.

I enjoyed this show because Daria was, as I said last week, able to turn things to her advantage. It's even the point emphasized by several articles about the show. If I wanted to watch something about mopey teens falling in love and dressing up and getting screwed over, I'd watch Melrose Place.

When "Quinn the Brain" first aired, someone commented that it was "a fanfic writer's dream come true." I agreed then, because that episode was very amateurishly done. Unfortunately, "The New Kid" is seeming much more like a fanfic than an actual episode. MTV's tight budget and all, I know, but they've said they don't have time to go through all the submission they get from agents. Maybe they should make the time.

First season was good, and it's great ending built up a lot of tolerance for mistakes. Unfortunately, this tolerance is gone. One more dog like this, and this page will be coming down. I have plenty of other things I can spend my time on, and if MTV wants to cater to their standard brain-dead zombies, they can bloody well have 'em.

There's a saying about an infinite amount of monkeys being able to write Hamlet in an infinite amount of time. I give this episode 10 monkeys, maybe half an hour.


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