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Daria: Is It College Yet? Reviews

Reviewed By: Brian J. Dillard

Smart, witty, and pragmatic, just like its protagonist, this feature-length farewell to MTV's favorite misfit doesn't waste too much time mourning the show's passing. It's too busy cramming in innumerable plot developments, wrapping up loose ends, and sending its main characters off to the real world (though not, thankfully, to MTV's The Real World). It's no surprise to anyone who's seen more than a few episodes of Daria that Ms. Morgendorffer would handle her college search, her graduation speech, and the end of her first real relationship with grace, dry humor, and levelheaded poise; the real surprise is the acceleration of sibling Quinn's transformation from Fashion Club bimbo to thinking young woman. Best pal Lane Jane gets short shrift amidst all the comings and goings of the Morgendorffer girls, but supporting characters Jodie and Mack enact a well-written subplot about the choices faced by college-bound African-American teens. Unfortunately, there is also a lot of broad humor involving the romantic exploits of various faculty members at Lawndale High; as was often the case on the show itself, the coarse stereotypes with which the grown-ups are depicted detract somewhat from the sharp writing that defines the teen protagonists. Still, Daria was a great youth-culture snapshot that touched on eternal teen truths and captured the specificity of growing up in the late '90s. And Daria: Is It College Yet? enjoys the same strengths as the series that spawned it.