Release Date: Available Now
Creators: Glenn Eichler, Susie Lewis
Starring: Tracy Grandstaff, Wendy Hoopes, Julian Rebolledo
The OG alternagirl ur-text
After nearly a decade of fever-pitched fan demand, MTV has released the legendary cult animated show Daria in one series-encompassing eight-DVD box set. Spanning 65 episodes, the pilot and two TV movies, this brilliantly realized and before-its-time portrait of teenage disaffection would be completely formulaic if it hadn’t, you know, done it first and best. Dysfunctional family life, moronic and status-obsessed peers, psychotic teachers—so goes the über-sarcastic Daria Morgendorffer’s quiet desperation in the suburban wasteland known as Lawndale. Watching this series makes it easy to locate a major point of origin for the beefy brand of irony that defined the aughts: the subdued—yet no less rapid-fire—wit of Daria’s titular outsider-heroine. It’s also painfully obvious that Diablo Cody owes this show’s creators several figures worth of back royalties. So when the crushing malaise of postindustrial life gets you down, remember the jangle that became a generation’s clarion call: La-la-laaa-la-la!