Friday, February 29, 2008

Happy Leap Year Day!

This was the most fitting pic I could find for Leap Year Day: Sk8er Daria.

Anyway, a new page has been added to DariaWiki: Science fiction! Please have a look at it and feel free to expand upon it at length. I have a few more things to add to it, but it's almost done as is. Westerns, horror, and some other major genres for classifying Daria fanfic are still to come. It is my secret hope that pages like this will encourage people to read older fanfics when they are displayed in original ways.

More soon. Okay, back again.

Here's an interesting mini-essay, on a blog called Conservatory Bound: "An Ode to Trent Lane." Interesting. Anyone else have this problem?

Another fan club, too, on Bebo.com: Daria Morgendorffer

More soon. More Bebo groups. Hmm, how to handle this. Does anyone reading this blog use social networking websites? I can post a truckload of them if so. Some of them are big, most are very small.

More soon.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

"Howdy, pardner! You from Texas?"

Okay, here's a weird one. Since I obviously have no life, it seemed like a good idea to track down some of the Daria westerns that have been written and put them on a page in the DariaWiki, simply because no one has done that before. All right, stop laughing. I'm serious. It's a genre, right? It's been done before in fanfic, right? Yeah, whatever. Anyway, here we go.

Canon Daria has only a few references to the western lifestyle, none very deep. Quinn has a clear attraction to cowboys, per her daydream in "College Bored" and her thing with Travis in "Speedtrapped." Daria has no such attraction, but she did develop a slight taste for country & western music in "Speedtrapped," unless that was only to irritate Quinn. The Morgendorffers went to the Grand Canyon when the girls were young (per The Daria Diaries), so they've been to Arizona. Heck, they lived in TEXAS for years, so the siblings would have to know something about the Old West. Oh, and we can't forget Daria dressed up as McCloud in her dream in "Murder, She Snored," riding a horse through downtown Manhattan.

As for fanfic . . . huh, how could you do it? Well, there's movie/novel crossovers, dream worlds, reinventions & uberfics, alternate universes, and post-canon tales, all sorts of possibilities. For examples, we've got to start off with "The Cynic, the Fashionista, and the Jackass," by Doggieboy, which is a brilliant and hilarious western crossover. That's got to be the archetype for this subgenre right there. Decelaraptor did some marvelous western tales, two coming to mind in particular: "Tales of the Missouri Cheyenne" and "Daria: 1830" (scroll down), both hugely comic and true to character. "Daria 2007: The Girl from Hope" flirted with a western scene at the end, when Daria was living in Montana and rode horses (and shot rifles). And Daria lived in Montana in "Darkness," but there wasn't much of a western-theme story in that, so skip that one.

Anyone else remember any Daria westerns? It's an offbeat theme, but it does work. Sort of.

It's Only a Paper Moon


Messing with the mind can be so dangerous.

—Tiffany Blum-Deckler, “Quinn the Brain”


This alter ego from the MTV website catches my interest each time I see it. In the early part of the last century, carnivals and fairs used to have photo booths set up in which people could have their pictures taken while seated on a large crescent moon prop, as Tiffany is doing here. I have the feeling that her costume and telescope were meant to be one of those in-joke references to a long-forgotten theater production, but I have no idea which. It doesn't seem to be related to the 1973 movie called Paper Moon. In any event, this is one of Tiffany's cuter shots.

Someone (I'm pretty sure it was Cincgreen) once said that fanfic authors sometimes gift Tiffany Blum-Deckler with fantastic powers in their stories because they cannot make her interesting in any other way. She is a hard nut to crack. You can take her just as she is for a comedy story, but if you are attempting something serious, you've got your work cut out for you making her believable and realistic. Whatever explanation must be cooked up to account for her obtuseness, narcissism, and superficiality must border on science-fiction territory. An excellent recent story, "Reclamation" by Roentgen/Cincgreen, portrays Tiffany as the victim of a high-tech brainwashing. Once as smart and cynical as Daria, she can barely put two thoughts together until Daria stirs up her mental mix. In my own fics, Tiffany has been a robot, a closet superhero, a reality manipulator (per The Matrix), and I forget what else. Authors have cast her as a pothead or pill-popper to explain her slow speech, which she didn't have early in the series. She's been portrayed as mentally unbalanced or even as faking stupidity for her own reasons, being extremely devious underneath her clueless facade.

The well of possibilities for Tiffany has not run dry. That alter ego of her from Is It College Yet? in which she is a professional psychic with her own hot line (see here) sparked an idea for a story about her talent with tarot cards, something the rest of the Fashion Club wasn't entirely aware of. I had part of a Halloween story written with this in mind ("With a Wicked Pack of Cards," from a line by T.S. Eliot), but it faded out on me. Too much research into reading tarot was required. If anyone wants the idea, it is yours for the taking. The title can be used, too, if you want it.

The paper moon idea still nags at me, though. There was a 1933 song called "It's Only a Paper Moon," from which the movie got its name. The lyrics are very interesting in a fanfic-inspiring sense, almost eerie in a reality-twisting way. See what you think. Maybe someone will have more luck with this idea than I did. Party on.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Getting Our Ducks in a Row

Updating the fanfiction lists again, but early this time.

FF.net
PPMB
SFMB

It's Deva Vu All Over Again!

To celebrate the appearance of a DariaWiki page on Real Person Fiction (as it applies to Daria fanfic) and another page on Reality Crossovers, we bring you Monica and Bill from the previous decade. As always, you are free to add more material for the betterment of all. Dr. Mike, Richard Lobinske, Brother Grimace, and more have done yeoman work adding even more encyclopedic pages.

The Daria Fan Club is up to 695 fans. Weird that I never heard of this spot. Does anyone have any personal experiences to share about this website?

Speaking of that, a website has appeared during my searches called The Daria Fans Press Room, dating from 2006. Anyone know anything about this one? Phone and fax numbers are included. LATE ADD: Ah, found it. This was started by Fr. Martin and is described on PPMB here. I had forgotten all about it. Now also added to the Daria-on-DVD links at left.

Just discovered a plethora of MySpace groups devoted to Daria. One has thousands of members. I will post these in the left column under their own group heading. Wow.

LATE ADD: MySpace Groups now added. Not sure how much use they will be, but hey, it sure can't hurt. Sure are a lot of them. More shortly.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Burning Issues

On PPMB is a beta-reader request from lupinsmoon12391, one of the newest stars in the Daria fanwriter skies. If you have some spare time, drop her a note and have a read.

Dariacon Orlando 2008 is this weekend. (I'm working, dammit.) Last chance to get your act together and party with the best.

The "Deref in England" Dariacon is entering the Advanced Planning Stage, which means nothing has gotten done yet, but there's still time! Check it out if you are of the European persuasion or could be persuaded to be in Europe for the con.

Christ Oliver reports noticing a sudden increase in Daria fan art. This is very good news for those of us who like Daria, and who doesn't? You can chip in on the discussion as you wish.

Mabottos offers more insights into the adventures of Jane Lane in Paragon City, plus views of her new costume, derived from an alter-ego pic at the MTV website.

Daria in Wonderland? HumberBay offers a unique view (a WIP) of the meeting with the Caterpillar. Feed your head. . . .

Finally, I cannot resist a link to the PPMB contest, "The 1,001 Deaths of Tom Sloane," with the wonderful line: “We’re from the future, booga booga booga!” It just doesn't get any better than this.

Caption Contest! Woo-hoo!

Just put your contest entry into the comments. Thanx.

Speaking of Aliens, I Forgot About This Guy....

This is a scene from the SF movie Jake was watching in "Aunt Nauseam," just before Trike Girl and her evil minions bombarded him with popcorn. The setting looks like Mars (red landscape, pink sky, two moons in background). You can click on the image to get a larger version of it. I was wondering, what if the alien was real and trying to make a living in Hollywood with bit parts? What if the female astronaut was actually Vivian Taylor and she and the alien had an affair off-camera and they came back to Lawndale to announce their engagement to Brittany but Brian Taylor electrocuted the alien just to see what it would do and Vivian was so distraught that she had an affair with Jake Morgendorffer only Jake didn't know it was Vivian because he had too much to drink in his cheap hotel room after he and Helen had another fight and Vivian got pregnant only she didn't know if the baby was Jake's or the alien's so there was a Very Special Episode of Daria in which everyone had to decide if they would be accepting of the baby even if it had six legs and big yellow eyes and just as Vivian is being rushed to the hospital the ambulance has an accident and Vivian is thrown into the back of the Good Time Chinese restaurant into the wormhole and Jake decides to go in and save her until he develops ringworm and now it's up to Brittany Taylor to rescue her mother and half-sibling and she goes into the wormhole and comes out just as her full grown half-sibling is attacking Tokyo? Wouldn't that be cool? I'm kind of stuck as to what happens next, though. More later.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Trike Girl Strikes Again!

One of the most striking characters in the musical episode "Daria!" is the one I call Trike Girl, a pigtailed preschooler on a Big Wheel pedaling fearlessly around Lawndale just before and after the hurricane passes by.

Trike Girl manages to insinuate herself in other episodes as well. She stands near Daria and Ms. Li on the sidelines of the parade in "I Loathe a Parade," and sits behind Jake Morgendorffer in a movie theater in "Aunt Nauseam," throwing popcorn at him when he acts up. Her high pigtails make her stand out in any scene. Why would anyone suspect that she is anything other than a sweet little girl?

Because she opens and closes the insane episode "Daria!" with her appearances, for one thing. She never seems to have been afraid one bit, nor did she seem to go home at any time during the hurricane. Coincidence? I think not. Also, Big Wheels were generally out of production in the 1990s. Where'd she get hers? She first appears (so far as I know) in the third season, when things got really out of whack. Remember the Good Time Chinese restaurant? Could she be a supernatural godlike invader from another dimension, prowling Lawndale for her amusement? Is she just "slumming" around town on her trike, playing tricks on mortals? What secret agenda does she really have? Was it she who brought Tom Sloane in to ruin Daria and Jane's friendship?

Post your thoughts and suspicions here. Let the world know.

Here they are, The Harpies! Or whatever.

We learn from her brief visit to Axl's in "Pierce Me" that Monique No-Last-Name was once in a band with Trent Lane, she's currently a member of a band called The Harpies, and she's thinking of leaving them "for real this time" to start her own band. This was in Season Two, usually placed around the 1997-1998 school year.

There are several literary ways to handle this. Fanfics could cover Monique's time with the Harpies, assuming she decided to stay with the group under improved conditions. At least three authors so far have written tales in which the Harpies appear, even going so far as to name the other members of the group: Bacner (twice), Richard Lobinske, and Crazy Nutso. One could even do a short series of stories on Monique's musical adventures with her bands. (The Harpies is, if the name is any clue, a girl band like Splendora.)

Or, we could get a look at Monique's future, what she was doing during Seasons Three through Five, having started a new (assumedly alternative rock) band in the Lawndale area. Who else would she have in the group? There aren't a lot of twenty-somethings around in the show, excluding Ashley-Amber Taylor for obvious reasons, but it's fun to guess. Off the top of my head, I can think of one drummer who might show up to help with the band now and then. It's a fun thought, up for grabs if anyone likes it. More later.

Where, exactly, is the real world?

Among other odd pages in DariaWiki is one on "reality crossovers," fanfics in which Daria or a comrade appears in the real world that we inhabit. If you happen to remember a story like this, by all means add it to the list on that webpage.

I was also mulling over the crossover page, trying to remember other fandom media in which Daria & company appeared. There was a scene in which a cartoon character received an electric shock, causing him to briefly change appearance. A friend laughed at him and said, "You looked just like Daria!" Anyone recall what that was from?

Christ Oliver has used some tiny Daria & Jane cameos in his comics, "Luann" had a strip in which someone was shown with a Daria T-shirt, and a web cartoon about "mall rats" showed the Fashion Club walking by (actually images by the immortal Liliane Grenier, lifted from Outpost Daria). Anyone have knowledge of any other such crossovers using Daria characters?

A lot of short subjects are on my mind tonight. We'll start with these and go on from there. Any help is appreciated. Cheers.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Other Shoe Drops

Almost 1,500 articles in DariaWiki! Hooray!

Over 11,000 visits here at DFB2! Yahoo!

And now for more fanfic to soothe the savage beast in us all. We could certainly use it.

PPMB

* Contains mature content. Brace yourself.


More later. I hope to do the science-fiction page for DariaWiki this week. Wish me luck.

If It's Sunday, It Must Be UPDATE TIME!

Some help would be appreciated with additions I am making to a DariaWiki page on crossovers. I'm trying to locate crossovers in other fandoms that have used Daria, particularly in comics and animated media. Anyone know of any? Feel free to chip in if so.

Father Martin asks the musical question: "Deref in England" Dariacon - which weekend? Please check this out if you are in or plan to be in the U.K. in the near future, to welcome the famous foreigner, Deref of the Outback! (Not the steakhouse, though.)

And now, some fanfic and art updates.


FF.net

Lawndale Online

SFMB
  • The Cynic, The Fashionista and The Jackass, by Doggieboy (Parts 8 and 9): Together again, and in deeper trouble than ever before. Plus, Beavis eats his vegetables.
  • A Little Vacation, by Doggieboy (Part 9): The natives are restless and hungry, and Daria & co. might soon need to change hotels.
  • Size Does Matter, by BlackHole (Part 10): Jane gets ready once more to try her luck with the new giant in town and create a new definition of "kinky."

PPMB Fan Art

Moar sune.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Reorg Time!

For most of the morning and afternoon I've been reorganizing the Ultimate Daria Directory at left, taking the advice of several readers to cut the enormous main link list into smaller bites. An essays/rants section has been created to that end. One site (Cosmic Hippo) has turned up Missing In Action and has been moved to "Blasts from the past." A few of the older supersites have been added to the recommended links because they contain so much useful information. New links have been added as well for your enjoyment.

Feedback is always appreciated, and suggestions for improvement would help.

LATE ADD: The Daria Fan Club has a lot more stuff than I had first thought. Anyone a member there? Anyone know anything about it? Inquiring minds want to know.

A Few More Points of Cyber-Interest


Still surfing around, and this morning we have:

Fanfics.org: Daria: A lesser-used cousin of FF.net. The Daria section has only 19 stories in it. Anyone reading this have some stories you'd like to post? Let's get this baby off the ground. LATE ADD: Oh, I wasn't aware of the problems here. Hmmm.

Experience Project: I Watch "Daria": I'm not entirely sure what this is, or even if it is still active. Maybe someone would like to check this out.

Writing.com: Interactive Daria story: Okay, here is a weird one. It's a pick-a-path story, the kind I . . . um, someone I once knew used to write. You read a section of text, then make a choice as to where you will go next. I believe someone else (Mike Xeno?) started an interactive story, but that was years ago. And this story here is about . . . weight gain? You look at it and figure it out. Maybe someone else could start a different story here.

I might add a few more things to this shortly. A weight-gain Daria story. Shades of "Arts n' Crass" . . .

MORE LATE ADDS: Richard Lobinske continues to do the work of Atlas on DariaWiki, adding new material on award-winning stories and fixing irksome errors. A heartfelt "thank you" goes to you. Brother Grimace, Roentgen, and Cyde also have added piles of new material. We are in your debt.

Just found the Daria Fan Club, with 690 fans and club news. It appears to have videos, too. How the heck did I miss this one earlier? Huh. Well, there it is.

Friday, February 22, 2008

A Fandom History Wiki? Who'd've Thunk It?

While cybersurfing® the superwideweb infomercialnet nanoblogwave®, I found another curious website, one where the history of various media fandoms could be posted. And lo! They had a slot open for Daria stuff, and someone had posted stuff thereon! This is the Fandom History Wiki (link goes to the Daria fandom section).

What else was there . . . oh, lupinsmoon12391's Xanga Site, and a weird very pink one called Femslash Ficathon 2007, with a special Daria section. Huh, wonder what that's all about.

More soon after I cybersurf® the next nanoblogwave®. Happy GW's B-day!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Age of Discovery

Yesterday I found the website where C. L. Basso ("Devilkitty") posted all of his Daria fanfic. I had thought all of his stuff was gone from the Internet, but I was wrong, thank heaven. Of course I also forgot that Kara Wild still has his works on Contrarian's Corner, so no problem!

Some of you might remember Dr. Mike from a few years ago. He has his own blog with some of his Daria fanfiction posted there. That blog appeared on my radar last evening as well, though I think other fans knew about it long before I did. Eh, so I was slow. So it goes.

There is an unusual website called Twisting the Hellmouth, full of Buffy crossovers, which appears to have some Daria/Buffy crossover tales worth a look.

And there is a website for crossover fanfic called (drum roll) . . . Crossoverfic.com! But, oh horror, there are no Daria stories posted there, even though there is space to do it! How long will this dreadful situation be allowed to stand? More notes soon.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Dariaverse to Dariaverse at Full Throttle


For the sake of something weird to do, I've been collecting notes on a thing called a "Dariaverse Crossover," which of course is destined to get stuck into the DariaWiki. It's a type of fanfiction that's exactly what it sounds like: Daria crossed over with Daria. Characters from one Dariaverse somehow make their way to another Dariaverse, and lots of chaos results. The archetypal story would be "Illusions," but Brian Taylor's "Through a Closet, Darkly" predates that story by quite a bit. The idea began with Daria folk going from the canon Dariaverse to a new one of the author's invention, but has also grown to include characters from one author's Dariaverse going into another author's Dariaverse. The idea can become very complicated and dramatic, as seen in Richard Lobinske's "Three."

Other than the above stories (and "Guys' Night Out"), can anyone think of any other Dariaverse Crossover stories? I'm trying to compile a list and am coming up short. Thank you for your help!

LATE ADD: Just remembered Lycissa's "Second Chances" and "End of the Line." Any others? Any older ones? My brain is empty.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Updating the Updates Project

Updating the weekly list of new fanfics is a chore, and there apparently isn't time to do it more than once a week, so it isn't very timely for the most part. Still, for now it will be continued here with links, as it does seem to be of help to readers.

Recently I discovered that some of the stories on ff.net were getting missed in my big lists of Daria tales told, so I am at work fixing that. I've updated the 2008 fanfic list for PPMB and SFMB, but not yet for ff.net.

The issue of NC-17 Dariarotica is also on my mind, as far as how to sort it out from other fanfic. My mental rule of thumb at present is that explicit stories will be excluded from my fanfic lists, just because, but they can be picked up for the annual NC-17 list by someone else. It also occurs to me that the annual NC-17 list can include highly suggestive stories as well as explicit ones. If pressed for examples, I would point to "Everybody Loves Jane," "The Misery Chicks," "Fashion Support," and "Touched by Angela Li" as being highly suggestive but not obscene, if that makes any sense. They could go up for the annual Dariarotica award as well as anything else. Lots of stories do the same kind of category crossover. I do recall that "Stacy Rowe, Seeker" contained one or two vignettes that were borderline NC-17, but I let it pass as I am so completely addicted to the series.

So there it is. Feedback on this topic would be welcome. Meanwhile, I'll keep going with the 2008 fanfic update. Cheers!

An Album Review: Splendora's In the Grass


Some time ago I mentioned that I wanted to buy Splendora's only album and see what the all-girl grunge band's music was like, since I loved the three songs they did for the Daria show and movies. I am happy to report that the album is pretty good, though with a caveat or two.

First, they aren't as polished as, say, the Bangles, but they've got the grunge part down solid. Some of their music reminds me more than a little of Nirvana or Hole (both of which I am a fan), but it is lively and upbeat, and the lyrics tend to stick in your mind ("B-b-b-bee stung lips!"). Oddly, the album sounds a lot better when you play it in your car than it does when you play it on your home stereo system; I have no idea why, but it just goes better with movement.

The "Lawndale Mall" section in the left column has several options for buying a copy of this CD. Mine was only $5.00 and worth it. It has temporarily replaced Tool in my car's CD player. You can almost imagine Daria bobbing her head to this as she does her homework. Give it a shot.

Monday, February 18, 2008

It's Presidents Day, with Kevin Washington!


This is Kevin Washington, the almost unknown younger brother of our first president. He attempted to catch a cannonball at the Battle of Yorktown ("I be-ith the QB!") and immediately won a posthumous place in that year's Darwin Awards, even though Charles Darwin hadn't even been born yet.

Enough boring history. On with the overdue fanfic list!


PPMB

* Contains mature content. Brace yourself.

More later. Have a great Prez Day Party!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

More Smash Hits Coming Up!

Jesse Moreno will do the Gallagher thing to lead us into another update of fanfic on the 'net.


Legendeld's website (which I've missed before now)

FF.Net (skipping the NC-17 stuff)
  • Generation Gap, by Richard Lobinske: Complete version in one chapter.
  • A Little Vacation, by Doggieboy80 (a.k.a. Doggieboy): Partying with the living dead.
  • Time Lapse, by Kevin R (Chapter 1): A flash of light, and everything in Lawndale is changed.

SFMB (ditto)
  • Darkly Daria, by ISauchelli (Parts 4 to 7): Well, I never liked O'Neill that much anyway. *
  • Size Does Matter, by BlackHole (Parts 7 and 8): Oh, the horror! The humanity! Alas, alackaday, my gosh!
* Contains mature content. Brace yourself.


More after I get through the mass of PPMB stuff. (LATE ADD: Didn't get through the fanfic as I had hoped. Rats. Later.)

Lots of Little Things to Check Out

While Gulliver Daria babysits the ankle-biters in Lilliput, we're go through some odds and ends here.

Today is the birthday of Mack Mackenzie's namesake, Michael Jordan, who's 45. It's also the birthday of the first-ever costumed superhero, The Phantom, who is 72.

Several websites concerning Daria fandom are in need of updating, and you might be the one for the job.

Dariacon at ElWiki: If you have a Dariacon in the works or are looking for one to attend, register here and get this site up to speed. It could use some artwork, too. Won't take long to do.

DMOZ Open Directory Project - Daria: It appears a volunteer position is open for editing this page. These links are pretty old and could use sprucing up. Got some free time?

Yahoo! Animated TV Shows > Daria: This directory page is old, too, but could be updated if enough people send e-mails in listing websites that should be included. Take a minute to compose something and send it in. (Don't pick the $299 option for registering, of course, just the free one.)

PPMB Fan Art Update
Brother Grimace had an interesting thought about the moment in "Pinch Sitter" when Daria comes to the door with her hair in pigtails. Had she and the Gupty kids already watched some unauthorized television before Jane got there? You decide. (Warning: video contains a pop star dancing.) More soon.

FF.Net: How do we measure up?

This blog now has over 10,000 views! Hooray! Yeah, a lot of them were mine, but forget about that. 10,000! Wheee!

Morbid curiosity prompted me to look at the story categories on fanfiction.net and see where Daria ranks among the legions of the popular, in terms of fanfics posted. Our Heroine has a secure place near the top of the pack in the Cartoons group. (I can hear someone shouting, "It's not a cartoon! It's an animated series!") At the moment, there are 1,033 Daria fanfics posted to ff.net. This is pretty good for a carto—animated series that's been off the air for as long as Daria has. There are a tiny number of superheavyweights in the list (10,000+ fanfics), some heavyweights (4,000+), a cluster in the low thousands (where Daria is), and loads and loads below the 1,000-fanfic level. Here's how the 1,000+ shows pile up.
  • Teen Titans (21,674)
  • X-Men: Evolution (11,587)
  • Danny Phantom (7,856)
  • Transformers/Beast Wars (6,089)
  • Invader Zim (5,118)
  • Kim Possible (5,041)
  • Ninja Turtles (4,290)
  • Xiaolin Showdown (2,852)
  • South Park (2,111)
  • Codename: Kids Next Door (1,979)
  • Gargoyles (1,523)
  • Justice League (1,454)
  • Powerpuff Girls (1,327)
  • Disney (1,194)
  • Jimmy Neutron (1,185)
  • Super Robot Monkey Team (1,074)
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy (1,066)
  • Daria: (1,033)
  • W.I.T.C.H. (1,020)
Thank God we outrank the Smurfs (48). Take that, you little blue @%$%^@$!! And we outrank Beavis and Butt-head, too (21)! YES!!! I've never heard of some of these cartoons, though. Super Robot Monkey Team? Xiaolin Showdown? Eh, whatever.

It is worth knowing that the number of Daria fanfics here compares favorably to the number of ff.net fanfics about William Shakespeare's work (1,056), though of course we have far below the number of Lord of the Rings fanfics (40,821) and are light years behind that Harry Potter cra—uh, stuff (343,047). Jeez Louise. We do beat out Dilbert comics, though (8, snicker).

Just something to meditate on while staring at your computer this morning. Enjoy.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Fantasyland Is Open

The DariaWiki page on fantasy in Daria fanfiction is mostly completed. It could use more examples and subgenres, if anyone can think of some. Please give it a look and post your thoughts here. Did I miss anything? If anyone has some deep thoughts about Daria fantasies (not the sex kind), those are welcome, too. A lot of empty links were left that others are welcome to expand upon if I don't get around to it. I'm not picky.

I hope to read some fanfic tomorrow. Wasn't able to get through much of it today. Cheers.

P.S. If anyone wants to borrow the pictures posted here, be my guest. I've fiddled with some of them to sharpen fuzzy images, heighten colors and contrast, clean up unnecessary parts, and enlarge smaller pix. Fun stuff.

Fairytales and Fantasies

In recent weeks I have been jotting down notes for some new pages on DariaWiki, covering certain fanwork conventions often seen in Daria fanfiction. By conventions I mean the types of fanfic people write, like shippers, angst stories, and . . . fantasy.

Fantasy is not often seen in Daria fanfic, as the show was generally realistic in plot and presentation. However, there were some startling moments when reality began to bend and twist like the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. The episodes that tended toward fantasy were not as popular as the realistic ones; this topic is further discussed at DariaWiki here, in detail. Nonetheless, some popular and fascinating fantasy works have appeared and bear closer examination. To this end, a DariaWiki page has been started (but not yet finished) covering the whole of fantasy fanfic in general, with special pages added (or soon to be added) for sub-genres such as dream worlds, fairytales, modern fantasies, and so forth. The Encyclopedia of Fantasy has been of great help in defining terms and offering ideas here.

Online contributions from other fans are more than welcome, as are suggestions here for categories of fantasy that could be covered, fantasy works from the earlier days of the fandom, and any other comments you have in general on the topic. Science-fiction stories will be a future project (apocalyptic SF, space-travel SF, time-travel SF, etc.), and horror will be covered as well.

One major benefit from all this work will be to look anew at many older fanworks and at more recent stories that are deserving of attention but too soon passed by. Here, your advice will be of great help, and (as always) you can contribute directly at DariaWiki. Cheers, and party on!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Today We Ask: What Is Love?

As we share the joy of this lovely Valentine's Day, we are compelled to ask: what is love? Yes, love, like a tiny rivulet which begins in a high mountain, crashing down rocky slopes through mud and goat poop and garbage left by campers, and only after twisting and turning for thousands of stomach-churning miles, overcoming nausea and chapped lips and hemorrhoids and uncountable other obstacles, must eventually meet and merge with that great oil-polluted ocean of love which is its birthright and its destiny. That is love.

And Anthony DeMartino wants a part of it. And you can help.

As you will surely recall, in The Daria Diaries, Mr. DeMartino sent a letter to a personal ad to ask for a chance to "attempt intimacy." Who got the letter? What happened next? Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to create a drabble (a tiny work of mini-ficlet fiction of 100 words or less) about his date, minuscule enough to fit in a Comments box below. Don't have The Daria Diaries? No problem! Here is the relevant part of the page you will need. Even a memorable line of conversation will do. Touch us! Astound us! Amaze us! Shock and horrify and gross us out! We don't care, this is the Internet and we're Daria fans!

Oh . . . and Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Happy V.D.!

Just a quick note to let you know I probably won't be blogging tomorrow night. Valentine's Day, you know, going out for dinner and so forth.

Richard Lobinske has done terrific work adding all the Daria Fanworks Awards to the DariaWiki. A round of applause for him, please.

And, as a special for Valentine's Day, here are three new artistic endeavors from PPMB, courtesy of (drumroll) DeviantART! Great name, that.

1. FANWANK!!! A sensitive and touching reminder of what February 14th is all about: naked lesbians and the guys who watch them. Thanks to Christ Oliver for this thoughtful and timely reworking of a classic (in-canon!) Daria/Jane moment.

2. Ukrainian Daria (WIP), by HumberBay. Ukrainians love Daria too, or at least I assume they do, and HumberBay is preparing Our Heroine for a special appearance in traditional Ukrainian dress. I think that's what that is.

3. Cuuuupiiiid, by MDetector5. Does this love taser make me look fat?

Have a great V.D. tomorrow. Party on most righteously!

Weird Problem

For some reason, though it had worked perfectly fine before now, the little head-bobbing Daria logo in the upper left corner of the blog caused the header to bunch up over it, as if the logo's width defined the margins of the header. I've removed the little logo with much sadness but am working on ways to add it back into the top again. Computers are evil. Anyway, the blog seems to be back to normal. Weird.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lincoln, Lincoln, I Been Thinkin'...

  • Brittany: Are you in a play or something?
  • Daria: Yes. I'm playing Mrs. Lincoln, after she went crazy.
  • Brittany: I didn't know she went crazy.
  • Jane: Oh, yeah. That's why Lincoln shot himself.
  • Brittany: Wow!
  • Jodie: Come on, Brittany. Let's finish outfitting, and I'll tell you all about how nice Mr. Lincoln really died.
  • Brittany: You mean the bullet didn't kill him?
.......from "I Don't"

Happy birthday, Abe. You done good. And so have the Daria fans.


FF.Net
  • Her Web of Sin, by Molekiller: A beautiful woman from Trent's past drops by to have a little talk and play a little game. A tale possibly suggested by this.

SFMB
  • Darkly Daria, by lsauchelli (Parts 2 and 3): A mask is always helpful when stalking prey.
  • A Little Vacation, by Doggieboy (Part 7): Bang bang, you're still dead.

PPMB
and a special art surprise from Hershey-chan: Hey, thanks. <33

UU suggested I write something about Mystik Spiral, and Brother Grimace suggested something about "Pinch Sitter," so let's see what we get tomorrow. . . .

Monday, February 11, 2008

Meet Travis the Singing Cowboy

As long as we're talking about "Speedtrapped"...

Travis is your basic nice guy. He's handsome, clean cut, charismatic, cheerful, friendly, flirtatious, and funny. He tells amusing tales, plays classic country music on guitar, hitchhikes around, and doesn't curse or act mean. He claims he's going to a music audition.

What good would he be in fanfic? Well, it's possible that he:
  1. Discovers he's someone's long-lost son and goes in search of his parent(s) (Jake Morgendorffer? Vincent Lane? Amy Barksdale? Angela Li? Mrs. Johanssen?).
  2. Meets and starts dating a twenty- or thirty-something character from the series. (He could be gay and date Wind or Trent Lane and move into the Lane home. He could be straight and date Summer or Amy or Rita. He could be bi and date all of the above.)
  3. Writes a song about Quinn that becomes a hit and causes Quinn such embarassment that she runs away from home.
  4. Survives a world-spanning atomic war and meets Daria and Jane on the road in West Virginia, where they kill and eat him, not necessarily in that order.
  5. Turns out to be a werewolf/ time-traveler/ wizard/ alien/ doppleganger/ robot/ clone/ DELPHI operative/ ex-boyfriend of Helen Morgendorffer/ ex-boyfriend of Kyle Armalin/ reincarnation of Travis the dead canary from "It Happened One Nut."
  6. Tries to sue Daria for attempted murder and gets her convicted on Quinn's testimony, putting Daria in prison for 3-5 years, where she plots the ultimate revenge.
  7. Is pleasantly delusional, with grandiose ideas that he is a famous country-music star, and wanders into Lawndale where he makes a major nuisance of himself.
  8. Is actually a psychopathic murderer who puts up a nice facade when he needs to disguise himself and flee the police, but he's now looking for Daria. And maybe Quinn, too.
  9. (REVISED TO BE MORE INTERESTING) Is a super-wealthy singer from Nashville with car-wreck-induced amnesia, who travels the country at random while his family searches for him, and Daria and/or Quinn recognize his picture and go looking for him.
  10. Your turn. Go for it.

Daria's Killer Impulse

We all do impulsive things that we shouldn't: buying a chocolate bar while on a diet, speeding up when the light ahead turns yellow, forwarding chain letters, voting Republican in November 2000. What few of us ever do on impulse is try to kill someone, which Daria did in "Speedtrapped." Oh, sure, you can say she was just kidding around when she aimed her father's car at cute cowboy Travis by the side of the road, she wasn't really going to hit him, no harm done. Let's review the evidence. What exactly happened at the end of that episode?

We'll set the scene. The countryside is flat except for telephone poles and scrubby grass and rocks. Newly licensed Daria is driving, Quinn is riding shotgun in her cowgirl outfit, their mission to help Jane and Mystik Spiral has been accomplished. Daria, however, is still steamed over cute cowboy Travis taking Jane's $100, even if it was moron sister Quinn who willingly gave him the money for a bus ticket and a new gingham outfit. As they start the hours-long drive home, the siblings chat. The following dialog is from the episode transcript on Outpost Daria, with some tweaking based on my repeated views of the scene.
  • Daria: [calm] That was nice what you said, that we make a good team.
  • Quinn: [breezy] I guess sometimes being timid works just as well as being confident.
  • Daria: [irked tone] I'm not timid.
  • Quinn: [suddenly excited; leans out of car window, points, and cries out] Oh my gosh, look! It's Travis! [waves at Travis, who is standing with his suitcase on the two-lane highway, about 2-3 feet from the shoulder]
  • Daria: [low voice] Seriously, do you really think I'm timid?
  • Quinn: [still leaning out window, normal voice] Yes, but it doesn't matter. [shouts and waves at Travis in excitement] It's Travis!
  • Daria: [in a flat, decisive tone, speaking as if to herself] I'm not timid. [Daria's right foot pushes gas pedal almost to the floor, engine revs up as car accelerates]
  • Quinn: [back in her seat, looking anxiously at Daria] What are you doing? [looks at road ahead, eyes grow huge] Daria? [shrieks] Daria! [Travis sees car approaching and runs from highway; Quinn screams as car runs over Travis's suitcase; suitcase is smashed open and contents are scattered everywhere; Travis steps back on highway and looks at departing car with stunned expression]
  • Daria: [calm, watching road ahead as Quinn looks out rear window] Okay . . . now do you think I'm timid?
  • Quinn: [turns around, nervous look and tone] Um, no. Why don't we just put on some music and relax?
  • Daria: [flat voice] I'll pick the music.
  • Quinn: [very agreeable] Fair enough.
Well, there it is!

In the scene, Travis is clearly shown standing on the highway blacktop well into the lane itself. His suitcase is behind him but closer to the shoulder than he is. Daria would not have to do anything but stay in her lane to hit Travis or his suitcase. When the suitcase was struck, the car was as close to the right shoulder as it could get without running off the road. The elapsed time between the moment Travis lept from the road to the moment Daria hit his suitcase is about one second.

You can assume that Daria assumed Travis would get the hint and jump from the highway so she could hit only his suitcase. Or, you can assume she was pissed as hell and didn't care if she hit the suitcase, Travis, or both. In any event, Daria was one second from hitting Travis, and she made no effort to swerve and avoid him.

This is arguably the dumbest thing Daria ever did. It is also arguably the most evil thing she ever did, to almost kill a human being just to prove a point to her sister. Travis was at worst a moocher and didn't mind sweet-talking teenage girls out of some cash. (He didn't use the money for a bus ticket, obviously.) He didn't appear to be armed, drunk, violent, abusive, sexually aggressive, or anything other than a cheerful, good-natured, roguish hitchhiker with a guitar. He was certainly nicer than the pedophiles who appeared in "I Don't," "Lucky Strike," and The Daria Database. Daria did nothing at all to the minister who hit on Quinn at Erin's wedding. Maybe the thought that the lost money had belonged to Jane, her best and only friend, ramped up her rage.

What if Travis had been just a second too slow, was too surprised to move, or didn't believe she would really try to hit him?

The speed limit on two-lane country roads around the Chesapeake Bay area is 55 miles per hour. Daria accelerated before hitting the suitcase, so she could have been going 65-70 or faster. A sedan of the type Daria was driving weighs over 3,000 lbs., a ton and a half.

No point in doing the math for the kinetic energy that represents. It's blammo, baby. I can't believe the suitcase didn't fly a hundred feet or the car didn't flip over after running over a foot-thick obstacle at high speed, but that's cartoon physics for you. (LATE ADD: If Travis's suitcase was made of cardboard, which some cheap ones are, and he didn't have much clothing in it, then I can see the car smashing and flattening it without much difficulty.)

What does this little episode say about Our Heroine? Your turn to chime in. The Comments box is open.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

A last sad note

Daria fan ahmygoddess passed away today. A remembrance of him is posted here.

Still Pretty Darn Cold Outside, Sometimes

Random bits posted late at night when I am too sleepy to do it right:
NEW ART ON PPMB
More soon, including my take on Daria's stupidest moment. Have a good night.

Fanfic Update, Part the Second

PPMB
  • Concert, by JPAGC (COMPLETE!): A sequel to "Suite for Cello, Two-Part Invention," and a crossover with Falling Into College, all in one.
  • Crouching Monster, Hidden Magic, by LSauchelli (Part 5): Talking with a green goddess about Jane, Amelia, Excalibur, and I'll stop there, you have to read this for yourself. Wow.
  • Darkly Daria, by LSauchelli (Parts 1 and 2): Monsters are out, and one of them is Our Heroine. *
  • EarthFall, by legendeld (Episode 2, Parts 2 and 3): Daria and Jane meet an ally with a familiar name, then arrive in a town with a very familiar name.
  • Falling Into College 61: Latitudes, by RLobinske (Parts 12 and 13): THONGS! SPEEDOS! Everyone boards the S.S. Poseidon for a three-hour tour before Quinn discovers that she needs "protection."
  • I've Waited Here for You, by Kristen Bealer (continued): The most realistic Daria/Trent shipper ever. The Angst-O-Meter caught fire and broke several chapters ago. Read at your own risk.
  • Legion of Lawndale Heroes Minis: Fraternity Brothers, by Brother Grimace (COMPLETE!): Tom Sloane and an old acquaintance mess with each others' heads. Literally.
  • A Little Vacation, by Doggieboy (Parts 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7): This story's title is soooooo wrong. Death, disaster, destruction, still lovin' it. Damn Angst-O-Meter's busted again.
  • The Misery Chicks, by NightGoblyn (Parts 7 and 8): Another burnt, broken Angst-O-Meter. Heading into "Cafe Disaffecto," with little fanfic crossovers here and there (e.g., "Mad Dog"). Someone is also having fun with things I write in this blog. Does this mean I'm a role model? That can't be good. *
  • Nature of Nurture, by Mascifin (Parts 2a and 2b): A Daria who cooks, and that's just the start.
  • New Drum, Same Tune, by Roentgen, assisted by Scissors MacGillicutty (COMPLETED!): "You're not going to bring class warfare into my boudoir!" One of the best lines ever.
  • The Plunderin' of Don Jake, by Gregor Samsa (COMPLETE!): ARRRR!!! Shiver me cynical timbers!
  • Size Does Matter, by BlackHole (Parts 3, 4, 5, and 6): Preparing for the most startling self-esteem class Jane Lane will ever have in any alternate universe.
  • Stacy Rowe, Seeker (Part II), by jtranser: A bad omen with a bushy tail.
  • Surprises, by legendeld (Parts 12 and 13): Waiting for the Helen Beast to strike.
  • Touched by Angela Li, by thatLONERchick (COMPLETE!): Read this, and you will never feel clean again. Never. *
  • Turnabout Confusion Part II: All The King's Horses, by Dennis: No forgiveness, no quarter, and blood on the moon.
* Contains mature content. Brace yourself.

More soon, probably need to add corrections, too. LATE ADD: Corrections made. Let me know what I missed or got wrong!

Fanfic Update, Part the First

Updating on a weekly basis doesn't seem to be cutting it. Too much fanfiction is coming out for this to pretend to be timely. I'll see if I can make the updates twice a week, or maybe three times every two weeks, whatever.

If anyone discovers new Daria fandom websites, let me know here. The more, the merrier.


FF.Net
  • A Daria Sutra, by Sleepy Lotus (Chapter 3): Daria and Tom get ready for the Long March.

SFMB
  • Darkly Daria, by Isauchelli (Part 1): A monster comes to Lawndale . . . and catches wind of a second monster it would like to kill. *
  • A Little Vacation, by Doggieboy (Parts 5 and 6): Daria finds a very interesting book in Robert's collection.
  • Size Does Matter, by BlackHole (Parts 3, 4, 5, and 6): The psych interrogation continues for Daria the Giant, while Quinn tries to "fit in" and Jane gets ready to make the biggest mistake of her life, ho ho ho.
* Contains mature content. Brace yourself.

Back soon with more (i.e., real life again). Also hope to update the big fanfic for 2008 list.

News You Can Use


Being a fandom reporter is fun, but Real Life has a way of getting in the way of being timely. With that in mind, here is the first of a series of updates on Your Favorite Fandom, with profuse apologies for being a wee bit late. To lead off, here's Mrs. Bennett with a slightly late tribute to Mardi Gras or bellydancing, whichever.


Back from the Dead!

  • I clicked on an old link and discovered that the Dariacon Wiki at ElWiki.com is back online. The website includes a link explaining why the site went down earlier. More chances to meet other fans, hooray! If you're into that kind of thing, I mean.
  • Oh, and all the convention information there needs to be updated. If you are running a Dariacon, go thou there and see what needs to be fixed.
  • Oh, and the wiki lets you add your own Dariacon stories to the "Current Events" section. Hmm, I don't know if this is a good thing or a bad thing. You can upload pictures, too. Definitely a bad thing in the wrong hands. Uh-oh.

Submit to the Lawndale Online SMOFs!
  • The secret masters of fandom at LO! have revised their submission guidelines. If you have stories and artwork to send in (and don't we all), check out the new information and start sending it in.

Dariacon 2008 Wants YOU!

More Cool Artwork!
  • Daria and Jane at the Altar, a nice clean recreation of a famous segue spot from a Daria marathon on MTV, re-done by Christ Oliver (who also very nicely re-drew Ranchoth's alternate kiss scene from "Dye! Dye! My Darling!"). Direct links to these scenes are offered here for the wedding art and here for the smooching.
  • Whoa! Just added: Gothic Daria and Jane in a graveyard! Thanks, Christ Oliver!
  • Iron Chef: Calling All Artists (Part 2): This challenge drew an amusing response from JennaUsername, who presents "the new girls in town" (direct link here).
  • Andrea, in the sharp, angular style of Ranger Thorne. Looks like she could punch someone out at any moment. Very nice.

Weird PPMB Threads!
DariaWiki Runs Wild!
  • Lots of fresh activity on our fandom wiki of late, including new pictures. Check it out, and please join in the fun by adding your own entries and information.

More news and updates soon. I would promise to be more timely in the future, but I'm trying to cut back on my lying.

LATE NOTE: Was just informed that the original Daria Fandom Blog has been un-updated. It's still a great reference and would be great to see active again, but it just won't happen now.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Talk Amongst Yourselves

I have stuff to post but no time to post it. Talk amongst yourselves until I get back. Here's a topic: what was the most stupid thing Daria ever did in the series? I have my own answer. More later.