Monday, March 31, 2008

Stretching Things a Bit

Fortress CINCGREEN has once again loosed upon the world an examination of the storytelling engine of Daria, and this time it covers...


Quote from the essay: When "Dye! Dye! My Darling!" came out and everything went to hell. . . . 8)

The Tom-Jane-Daria triangle was a bit of a stretch, but that's over and done with. No sense in holding a grudge now. Forgive and forget. Live and let live.

Say, how is that "Tom dies" thread doing? Just kidding.

Vive le fanfique!

Today is the Eiffel Tower's 119th birthday, as Casual French Sailor Mack reminds us. The very definition of machismo. I think that's a piece of straw in his mouth. Maybe a bent cigarette. Something like that.

Richard Lobinske's advice thread on PPMB, Preparing Simple HTML Files for Fan Fiction, groweth ever longer with the season. Lots of suggestions and help for writers wishing to spruce up the look of their fanfics.

More sharing of Daria fan art found on the Internet takes place at It came from the internet 2: The return of the revenge. Contributions and links welcome!

Update time!


Consulting Deeds, Done Dirt Cheap

The lead guitarist of AC/DC, Angus Young, celebrates his birthday today. He's about the same age as me, only a trillion dollars richer. But I'm not bitter, oh no, not me, no, uh-uh.

The Mighty Roentgen has sent me the link to a recent humor piece by Glenn Eichler (name sounds familiar). It appeared in The New Yorker last year. Anyone for antiques? (Not talking about Angus Young, of course. He's too rich to be an antique. Not that I'm bitter or anything, no, not at all.)

Roentgen also sent me a YouTube link of interest here. "These are clips from the Beavis and Butt-head SNES game (Super Nintendo Entertainment System)," he writes. "Beavis and Butt-head seem to be seeking out Gwar! tickets and face many obstacles on the way.......this 'level' is set at Highland High School. About 1:41 into the club, we see no one other than Our Heroine coming at them with what looks like a pointy stick...or something. Daria gets knocked down, and the game continues. We never see Daria again." Dirty deeds done dirt cheap, indeed. [LATE ADD: Daria is actually carrying a lunch tray. The bad boys knock her down.]

"Did you know that the lockers at Highland High were baby blue and pink?" Roentgen adds. "No wonder Todd keeps knocking them over." Wonder if they were color coded for boys/girls.

In the realm of surprising new Daria art, Christ Oliver has posted a very fine pic discovered on deviantART: It came from the internet 2 : The return of the revenge. Niiiiiice! I feel less bitter now. I wasn't before, of course, but after that picture I feel less so.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Mental Flotsam

Vincent van Gogh is 155 years old today, as Jake reminds us. The picture appears wrong at first because: 1) he's holding paintbrushes in his left hand; 2) his left ear is bandaged, not his right, per VvG's self-portraits; and, 3) his coat is buttoned the wrong way, again per his self-portraits. However, he did his self-portraits while looking in a mirror, and he was (so far as I can tell) left-handed. Thus, the picture is generally correct if you were to look at him in real life. Which of course you can't, as he is dead.

Almost 1,700 articles in DariaWiki! (LATE ADD: Now 1,707. Richard made "Latitudes" #1,700. You da man!)

Some activity has been noted on the minor message boards. On Television Without Pity, a talk progresses about the likelihood of Daria DVDs.

A poster on Daria's Rubber Board asks if anyone agrees that Jane Lane and Natarle Badgiruel of Gundam Seed look strikingly alike. (They do. Cloned? Not the same personalities, for sure.)

And, on the dreaded IUFMB (Infamous Unserious Five's Message Board), Ranger Thorne has been elected Most Significant Poster of 2008, in part because until just recently he was the ONLY poster in 2008. One of the IUF has returned, however. What does this portend? Could it be a sign of the Apocalypse? One can only hope.

First part of a broad update:
* Contains mature content. Brace yourself.

Lawndale Online

Off to the Races

Secretariat, the greatest racehorse that ever lived, was born on this date in 1970. I just knew I was going to find a use for that picture! I knew it!

More to come. Stay tuned. Back.

Ever wonder what Outpost Daria looked like almost a decade ago? Check it out.

Here is an artistic take on Daria I haven't seen before, though maybe it came up elsewhere and I wasn't paying attention. Nice work.

A writer for, an interesting website in its own right, reminisces about a crush she had on a Daria character in an article on TV show spin-offs. Scroll down for the spot, then click on that character's name for more "crushness." More soon.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Janet Barch's Favorite TV Actress

Today is the birthday of Lucy Lawless, Janet Barch's favorite TV actress (or maybe Xena is her favorite character, whichever), and it is also the day for Earth Hour, when you turn off the lights in your house. I think that's to save energy, I'm a little unclear on the concept as I wasn't on the committee setting up that holiday. Does Holiday Island have an Earth Hour character? Is he/she considered "dark"? (That was an Earth Hour joke.) More later once I think of something else to say.

LATE ADD: This post was looking thin, so I'll flesh it out.

Old news for some, but Doggieboy has previewed an upcoming fanfic on PPMB: The End of the World.

The Sidhe has thrown down the gauntlet in the form of an Iron Chef called The Sloane Family History. Detail Tom's hideous ancestry! Tell the world of his family's vile crimes! Make something up, it's okay! Thomas, scion of generations of hamster abusers! Oh, the humanity! More later.

Friday, March 28, 2008

More Proof that Uranium Is Not Safe to Drink

Our Three Mile Island poster children, Beavis and Butt-head, are here to offer more timely news from the 'net...

Another insightful look at the storytelling behind the Daria show has strayed from Fortress CINCGREEN, this time examining Trent Lane's role in the series. This one is particularly good.

smk's fanfics are appearing on Lawndale Online.

A British girl band called Jane Lane? I can't make out what that webpage is about. Anyone else have an idea?

Yet another media website claims Daria was one of the best cartoons of all time, this time based on the editors' opinions. (I think Daria was the only show here that got more than one vote.)

"My Dinner with Daria," a PPMB thread by TheSecretSharer, asks fans what their idea of the perfect evening with The Sarcastic One would be like.

"The 1,001 Deaths of Tom Sloane" continues on PPMB unabated. Have you ever seen such cruelty? Speaking of unabated, there is also "Scenes No Daria Fanfic Should Have: Dawn of a New Horror," plowing along as always.

My counter service says this site gets about 100 unique hits per day, with a total hit count of about 133 on average. Not too shabby. A complete rundown on PPMB fanfic is coming this weekend. Stay tuned.

With Enemies Like These . . .

I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: "O Lord, make my enemies ridiculous." And God granted it.

Voltaire, 1767

While in the process of surfing around the other day, looking for odds and ends of Daria stuff to scribble about, I accidentally discovered a message board frequented by neo-Nazis and people who like to argue with them, and the thread to which the search engine led me concerned White Nationalists' opinions about the Daria show. I admit to being vastly astonished that neo-Nazis would spend any time at all away from their book burning and immigrant beating and religious vandalism to watch cartoons, but who am I to judge? At any rate, the one thing that most perturbs neo-Nazis about Daria, it seems, is Mack Mackenzie, because he is black and smart, and Kevin Thompson is white and stupid. Neo-Nazis believe this is not possible, even in a cartoon, and object to it mightily as propaganda put forth by Jews. Now, that's a surprise.

One learns a lot about a person or thing by studying its enemies, and if Daria has enemies like this, that says something. This line of logic cannot be carried too far because of a certain innate fallacy in doing so. Just because Hitler loved his dog doesn't mean that loving your dog is bad, although Hitler did poison his dog, too, so maybe it wasn't a kind of love we're normally familiar with.

By a strange quirk of fate, Daria took shots at Nazism in a manner reminiscent of what was done with Adolf "Elizabeth" Hitler in The Producers. Tad Gupty proclaims that "Hitler ate sugar" to prove how bad it is, and in "Fat Like Me" we are treated to an ad for a Sick, Sad World episode called, "There's Something About Hitler," in which Der Führer is said to have been reincarnated as a "madcap leggy blonde." Daria isn't the only cartoon to bash Hitler (Daffy Duck did it, literally, in 1944, as did Donald Duck two years earlier), but the irony of Daria's situation is pleasing.

I brought this issue up in another forum, but it is better treated here in a comedy-oriented blog, where it belongs. The neo-Nazis vs. Daria thread died long ago, the n-N's doubtless having moved on to protesting some other cartoon's depiction of white people, and we will move on as well.

LATE ADD: It has been noted elsewhere that the reason Mack Mackenzie appears flawless in the show was because the show's creators forgot to give him flaws. In other words, he was likely meant to have "issues" like everyone else, but escaped that fate by sheer accident. Irony on irony. Still, most fans are fond of their Saint Mack and are willing for forgive MTV for making him perfect. Screw what anyone else thinks of it.

The Divine Miss D?

It's questionable whether this trend was sparked by the appearance and popularity of Daria, but a number of fantasy game elements have surfaced online that make use of the same name. Daria is the name of a goddess in two different role-playing campaigns, Theeurth and Valusia. Daria is also the name of several fantasy campaign worlds and regions, including one faerie realm. The Daria is even a group of witches fighting other witches to save the world.

It appears that a number of people have attempted to run role-playing games based around Lawndale, with players taking the roles of Daria characters. Most of these games seem to have ceased, but their remains are intriguing. I doubt that a Daria RPG would last long, as Daria's main goal in life was to get everyone to leave her alone, which makes the whole thing sort of pointless.

The name does seem to have gotten around in the last few years. Odd that it has such a strong resonance with fantasy gamers. But then, I was a fantasy gamer once, too. Hmmm. Don't know what to make of that.

LATE ADD: This topic has nothing to do with Saint Daria of the Catholic Church, so far as I know. However, it is interesting that Saint Daria's Feast Day is October 25th, which would make St. Daria a Scorpio, just like Daria Morgendorffer.

It's Time For . . . DOCTOR SCIENCE!

Today marks the twenty-ninth anniversary of the nuclear accident at Three Mile Island, near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, which resulted in a release of radiation that affected only one person: a young English teacher named Timothy O'Neill, who was driving by the Three Mile Island nuclear plant on his way to take a job in the Lawndale school system. As a result of his exposure, Tim mutated into a fearsome half-ton creature of unlimited rage and might. Self-esteem issues caused him to go on a rampage and destroy the cities of Altoona and Scranton before heading toward Lawndale, where he taught Language Arts and headed the Drama Horizons club until April 2002, when he was laid off due to budget cuts and destroyed Wilmington, Delaware.

This has been "One Minute with Doctor Science." We now return you to your regularly scheduled Internet surfing.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

"Oh, Daria, don't be shy. Show me your boobs."

As proof that real life is a trillion zillion bajillion times stranger than fiction, this article is offered. Notice that it happened at Jane Magazine. Kind of makes further commentary unnecessary, doesn't it?

Jane, alas, is no longer published, but Daria! Magazine is . . . no longer being published either, it seems.

"Jane's Guide to Boobs." You cannot make up stuff as weird as this. You just can't.

Charles Ruttheimer III, King of England?

Only 383 years ago today, Charles I became King of England. What if, thanks to a time machine . . . no, let's not go there. Sorry. Today is also the 214th birthday of the U.S. Navy and the 45th birthday of Quentin Tarantino. One of Tarantino's movies had a significant impact on a recent Daria fanfic.

Oh, and the supersonic Concorde, beloved of Sandi Griffin, would have been 38 today if they hadn't stopped flying it.

Let's see what the Internet-with-a-capital-I has to show us today. . . .

* With a capital I.

Daria Morgendorffer, Starfleet Captain? Wow, the things you learn online. She sure looks different without her glasses.

Unbeknownst to most of us, the San Francisco Chronicle once named Daria one of TV's best "teen smarty cynics." That was nice. Amazing how popular she became despite her best efforts to avoid it.

A few days ago I made a snide comment about using the Internet to date Daria nerds. Well, it appears you can really do that after all. What will they think of next?

Yearning for some Daria/Thundercats crossover fanfic? Yearn no more! Click here.

Whatever became of the guy who voiced Jake Morgendorffer? Perhaps this webpage will solve the mystery. More power to you, dude, and good luck with that.

Finally, thanks to students in Marshfield, Wisconsin, Daria Morgendorffer and family are able to explain the U.S. Constitution to you. That's a report to which I would have given extra credit, for sure, or rather I would have if they hadn't spelled "Constitution" as "consfghsfdgsdtitution." That's supposed to be a capital C there: "Consfghsfdgsdtitution." Kids these days.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

"The Glasses Are You"

Was there anything to what Jane said in "Through a Lens Darkly" about Daria's glasses having symbolic meaning? Perhaps there was. An interesting online essay looks at what a simple pair of spectacles can stand for, both in the Daria series and in real life.

This is not the only time that eyeglasses have been said to have symbolic value. Lord of the Flies is frequently cited as turning the glasses of one of the characters (Piggy) into a powerful symbol, particularly when those glasses are broken in the course of the story.

Remember when Daria takes off her glasses at the end of "Quinn the Brain," and what she is trying to accomplish? It brings to mind Dorothy Parker's comment about men seldom making passes at girls who wear glasses. Is that true? Obviously not in Daria's case. Furthermore, there are loads of commentary on the Internet about this very issue. See the following websites for wall-to-wall coverage of the looking-glasses issue. (Note: Some sites have adult commentary on the issue, so be warned.)
This topic has even came up on PPMB, time after time after time after time after time after time after . . . well, you get the idea. If anyone ever has to write a term paper about glasses and self-image, your work is completely done.

Me? I would never get rid of my glasses. My glasses are me, too. They say NERD, that's exactly what I am, and I like it that way.

Food for thought.

LATE ADD: Speaking of food for thought, peek at the latest offering from Fortress CINCGREEN on Stacy and Upchuck, warts and all.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Happy (Former) New Year's Day!

Today is Lady Day, which was until 356 years ago New Year's Day in England, Ireland, Wales, and "the colonies." The year 1751 actually began on March 25th. The Gregorian calendar was adopted by England in 1752, so that year began on January 1st. The year 1751 was thus very short. The switch from Julian and Gregorian calendars actually has some importance in an unfinished Daria fanfic ("The Other").

Today is also Maryland Day, which would have had little effect on Daria and Jane even if they did live near Baltimore. Lord Baltimore and others founded the colony of Maryland 374 years ago. Brittany might have worked out a cheer for it, though.

Fifty-three years ago, Allen Ginsburg's poem "Howl" was declared obscene by U.S. Customs. This is the poem Daria tried reading to retirement-home seniors in "The Old and the Beautiful" ("I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked, dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix. . . .").

An interesting analysis of two Daria episodes, "Too Cute" and "Pierce Me," appears online here. A fan site I hadn't noticed before, The Daria Goodies Page, offers stuff to download. And another "adoptable" webpage on Daria is available on FanCast Beta.

On DariaWiki, Roentgen continues to improve on his already excellent list of Daria episodes, giving their original showtimes and plot summaries as well. Brother Grimace, Scissors MacGillicutty, and Richard Lobinske added more material as well.

A couple of updates:

Also, Kristen Bealer and Richard Lobinske posted stories to Lawndale Online and

Any more Dariacons being planned?

Monday, March 24, 2008

The Exxon Valdez = The Princess Fairy?

Nineteen years ago today, the drunken captain of the gigantic oil tanker Exxon Valdez ran his ship aground, spilled his cargo, and destroyed Alaska (or a large part of it, anyway). This event was probably the inspiration for the Daria episode, "Just Add Water." Was Captain Hazelwood the model for Captain Nelson (at right)? You decide.

In the fandom, the question about Daria websites having any updates soon has been answered. Outpost Daria and Lawndale Online are both ready for action, but first they need SUBMISSIONS. Meaning, you have to write them and send them in. NOW. Richard Lobinske has prepared a helpful tutorial called "Preparing Simple HTML Files for Fan Fiction," located on PPMB Creative Writing forum.

Roentgen has designed a tidy table of Daria episodes with basic information on each for DariaWiki. Kudos to him for the excellent work. ("Kudos" is an Australian word meaning "more beer.") Almost up to 1,700 articles! Who will hit the magic number?

The newest creation from Fortress CINCGREEN is a look at Jodie and Mack, and their roles in Daria as "background color" (pun intended, sorry). I really liked this essay, an excellent probe into what each one of the two is really doing on the show. Jodie's analysis is especially revealing, a cautionary tale for Daria and those like her.

In the news, there's mention of Daria in an article on spin-offs, on a website devoted to Athens, Georgia. The website has one of those semi-unfortunate names that trick the eye ( Get it? Huh huh huh huh huh.....

Um, more updates, then.



I'm toying with the idea of creating another "Fanworks Conventions" page on DariaWiki devoted to mysteries, spy thrillers, and other action/adventure fanfics. They date back to the start of the fandom, as far as I can tell. More later if I get going on this.

LATE ADD: A Louisiana State University opinion about the lamentable state of MTV, with mention of a familiar name. We know how you feel.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

A Cold Frosty Sundae with Nuts

It's snowing outside. I thought we were done with that crap. Rats. Let's see, what's new online. . . . billions and billions of webpages and nothing's—oh, here we go:

Richard Lobinske presses on his mysterious journey into the outer limits of the twilight zone of DariaWiki, adding new pages everywhere. Thanks, man!

The Current PPMB Debate: The importance of the cartoon format to Daria, put forth by Operculum. Add your opinions on how it would have been different if it had used live actors.

From the depths of Fortress CINCGREEN comes an examination of Quinn and Sandi's roles in Daria, and which one is truly more popular.

An all-female (as far as I can tell) message board/blog page/whatever devoted to Daria has turned up, on a site called, um, Team Sugar. Okay, sure, why not. Enjoy.

Richard Lobinske updated the 2008 Visual FanWorks Listing today. Thank you again! Enjoy the fruits of the artists' harvest.

Two significant honors that the Daria show won in its time: In TV Guide's list of the 50 greatest cartoon characters of all time, Daria is #41, just above Wonder Woman. Not bad! And Daria was chosen as one of the "Top 10 Cartoon Nerds Ever" in a poll conducted by G4 TV, which of course is geekness cubed to the nerd power.

And the PPMB updates!

  • Avalon, by legendeld (Parts 4 and 5): Heading into X-Men territory, crossed over with King Arthur. A wild ride in progress.
  • Daria d'Arc, by LSauchelli (Parts 2 and 3): God continues to micromanage Daria's reality, with unexpected results.
  • Falling Into College 61: Latitudes, by Richard Lobinske (Part 22): Jake, Michael, Mike, and Q form a karaoke singing group right after Quinn gets laid. These events are not related.
  • John Lane 33: Tiptoe Through the Ivy, by Richard Lobinske (COMPLETE!): Daria reveals her deepest secrets, but Quinn remains dirt-free. Then, family role-playing: “Helen? Jake? Hello? You’re upsetting the other guests.”
  • A Little Vacation, by Doggieboy (Part 16): Daria tells her mother the truth. And her mother believes her. What miracles lie ahead?
  • The Misery Chicks, by NightGoblyn (Part 15): Great spot to leave us hanging at the end, NG!
  • My Sons, by legendeld (Part 6): “I can’t believe my parents think I could be pregnant,” Daria said as she tore through another slice of pizza.
  • The Other Side Of Time: And All That We've Won, by The Sidhe (Part 4): Southern Comfort time with the generals.
  • Size Does Matter, by BlackHole (Part 17): The Teen Titans remain suspicious, and the student body remains amazed.
  • Stacy Rowe, Seeker (Part II), by jtranser (continued): The assassination of Grand Duchess Daria Yakovlevna, formerly Morgendorffer, as written by parties yet unknown and performed by snipers, animal murderers, bikers and inmates to be named later, only the bikers turn out to be the good guys, I think.
  • Turnabout Confusion Part II: All the King's Horses, by Dennis (continued): Some people like to twist the knife. Some people deserve the extra twist.
Finally, we have Scenes That Should Be: Brains for Rent (more strangeness), and the ever-popular...
More tomorrow. Party on, ppl!

Nothing New Under the Sun? Not Here!

Looking for more Daria weirdness on the 'net? You've come to the right post.

First stop, the cast helps explain a peculiar urban legend with religious overtones: Daria In... "Beware Of Smurfs"

Next, we have a page from The Complete Directory to Prime Time Network and Cable TV Shows, 1946-Present, 8th ed. It's a PDF file. As you read over the entry, do you notice anything glaringly . . . odd about it? How could they screw that up?

Then, there's Mii Plaza, a site that offers various custom elements for your Wii system. In the Cartoon Mii section are various images of Daria sent in by Wii gamers. Interesting gallery.

And now we come to The Daria Test, an online dating exam on OKCupid. I don't see how this is related to dating unless you only want to date Daria nerds. Uh, not that there's anything wrong with that.

On, someone describes a dream involving Daria . . . and a courtroom case, ABBA music, the singer Meatloaf, and a canoe. Further comment is unnecessary.

Daria as TV therapy. Okay, this one makes sense.

Daria is voted into Mensa, sort of. (Search for "Daria" to find relevant comments.)

And finally, the "Jane Lane" group on Last-FM. I have no idea what this is about. On the surface, it seems to be a "community" of Jane Lane fans who love music, but I feel like I'm missing something here. I think they regard Jane as their role model for life and are trying to live as she would. Maybe I should join.

Happy Easter.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

A Very Bunny Time of Year

Upchuck and his feisty Baby Blue Bunny Brigade remind us that Easter is a time for love and togetherness and remembering the Easter Bunny. They're not alone, either. Jake Morgendorffer's family celebrated Easter when he was growing up, per "Of Human Bonding," and he would have celebrated it, too, if his father had let him come home from Buxton Ridge Military Academy.

"You can't even paint Easter eggs without talking about your butts, can you?" says Daria to Beavis and Butt-head in one of the B&B comics, highlighting the importance of friends this holiday. Yes, it is a special time everyone draws or writes about. Angelinhel portrayed little Quinn finding an Easter egg, and Brandon League offered a heartwarming tale of little Jane and her good-natured defacing of public property in "Easter Eggs Need Color."

And what would Easter be without finding an Easter egg of your own? If that's not enough, here are a truckload more.

I'm posting this early because tomorrow is going to be complicated (family gatherings, etc.). Party on most righteously!

Daria: The Spaceship, Planet, and People

The object at left is the spacecraft Daria, twenty miles long and five miles wide, which appeared on the old TV show Space: 1999. The episode was entitled "Mission of the Darians," and was about a lost colony ship built by a humanlike race who lost their homeworld, also named Daria. Though the use of the name bears no relationship to the show Daria, it is interesting to see this peculiar use. This topic came up long ago on PPMB and is reprinted here for no real reason except nostalgia.

If Daria ever got into the SF fandom thing, she might learn about this show and dress up as a Darian for a costume contest. . . .
NOT. I could never see Daria do that. Oddly, though, I notice one Darian was named Kara. Okay, that was just too weird.

Speaking of Planet Daria, there is a blog from Australia named that now. The old web address for the very early Geocities website called Planet Daria ( no longer works, and I cannot get it through, either. Rats.

Make a Splash!

Today is World Water Day, so have a drink. I believe that's how it's celebrated. At right, Jodie Landon dives in, pinkly dressed as mermaid-movie star Esther Williams.

Updates on the way, from non-PPMB sources . . .


More updating on the way, plus random stuff as always.

Caption Contest!

Things Trent Should Not Say at Moments Like This

Flip-Flopping on the Issues

Glance at the image at right for a second. Notice anything unusual about it?

If you said Daria's hair looks odd, you win an Internet cookie. The image is one of many on the Internet and in other media that has been "flopped," as we used to call it in the magazine business. It's been flipped over, left to right, so Daria's front bangs swing down to her left, not to her right. Andrea looks odd for the same reason.

If you pick up your copy of The Daria Diaries and look at the back cover, you'll notice (eventually) that the bottom image of Brittany, Jodie, Jane, and Daria has been flopped, too. In The Daria Database, the family portrait of the Griffins, standing on their home's staircase, has also been flopped. You can tell because the same area in its correct orientation appears in the episode "Gifted," when Quinn is over at Sandi's house.

Similar pictures have surfaced on various websites. There is an otherwise nice wallpaper for Daria on Absolute Daria Files that has been flopped so several people look a little strange.

Flopping isn't bad in itself. In fact, it's a neat way to generate more eye-catching images that look slightly familiar but still unique. I've used flopped images in this blog when the difference between the proper orientation and the flopped one was nonexistent. This image of Sandi, for example, was flopped, and I flopped an alter ego of Jake on March 1st for comic effect.

Irfanview allows you to flop images very nicely, better I think than Paint, and if you happen to like toying with images then you can give flopping a try. You can't do it with anyone whose hair style is asymmetrical, like Daria or Jane, unless the hair style has been changed (e.g., pulled back in a ponytail).

Just a random note to start off a Saturday. It's not like I'm going to watch basketball all day or anything. Seriously.

Friday, March 21, 2008

It came from TEH INERNETZ!!!!

Want to hear the real Sick Sad World? It's a music show on WRUV, 90.1 FM, based at the University of Vermont, Burlington VT. The DJ's name is Erin, and the show (according to one source) was named for the TV show on Daria. It plays Wednesdays at 2 p.m. You can get it through the Internet*, of course. I haven't heard it; it showed up on a search engine and looked interesting, so . . .

The coolest Jane Lane fan art I have seen in ages: Jane Lane in Succubus Mode. Whoa.

Speaking of Our Heroine, Jane, remember that Jane Lane action doll that came out a few years ago? No? Here it is again. It was a one-of-a-kind, and all we losers can do is drool over the photo.

And a few more Daria-oriented webpages in dire need of adoption and expansion and elaboration and correction and completion (by any willing and determined superfan):

Enjoy your adopted page and make us proud. Surprise us! Surprise everyone! Party on, it's Friday! More later if I wake up.

* With a capital I. Not to rub it in.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Quickie Filler Post About Cell Phones

There's a nonfunctional but not-yet-extinct website, Mr. Tones, for a company in Italy that is now out of business as far as I can tell. Mr. Tones offered little images and logos and such for cell phones. However, with the advent of easy and free downloadable phone wallpapers and other stuff that you can do completely by yourself, the need for the kind of cell-phone wallpaper Mr. Tones sold seems to have fallen off. What was interesting was that the company offered (among other personalized user names) two versions of the name "Daria" to stick on your phone's image space.

One looked like this:

And the other like this:

The latter was obviously based on the TV show's logo. The company offered a Daria ringtone, too, which I assume was based on the show's theme by Splendora, but the ringtone button doesn't work anymore. Dang.

So, the point of this is, I know nothing about ringtones and stuff, but if anyone knows a place to download Daria ringtones and other cell-phone accouterments, please post some notes about it here, in case any fanatical fans wish to try that. (I keep my own phone shut off or on vibrate because I hate noise.)

Technology moves faster than we can keep track of. So it goes. Just remember:

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Daria's Magnum Look, Courtesy of Tom . . . Tom Selleck, That Is

The title sounds like a pun on something from Zoolander, but it's not quite that bad. One segment of Daria's dream in "Murder, She Snored" spoofed the 1980s TV series Magnum, P.I., which starred Tom Selleck as a Hawaiian private eye. (Tom is on the right.) Tom Selleck was famed for wearing brilliantly colored shirts on the show, and in the MPI segment Daria wears one, too.

What's funny, at least to me, is that Daria (in a cleaned-up screen-cap at left) looks pretty good in a bright Hawaiian shirt, with a white tee underneath, of course. Not the first thing I would have thought of for an alternative look on her.

Daria if living in Hawaii or the West Coast? Daria on spring break from college? You decide. And do some more fan art of Daria in some different clothing, we could use a break from that green jacket.

[Oops, I was going to post this yesterday but fell asleep instead. Here it is anyway, a day late. I'll add some more to it, then.]

In other news, Richard Lobinske, Brother Grimace, Roentgen, Ranchoth, and others continue to expand the ever-expanding expanse of the expansive envelope of DariaWiki. Richard added a new category that will be of good use: Canon Media. All the publications and mass media from the show can be listed here, though SSW is missing. Hmmm. Maybe "media" is print media only.

CINCGREEN has begun a new series on his blog, examining the "storytelling engine" of Daria. Excellent reading of the cerebral kind, what this fandom needs. (I'm not particularly good at doing this myself, so I love seeing it.)

Got a bunch of useless Daria screen captures and other images laying around on your hard drive, doing nothing? Upload them to the Images section of the Daria Fan Club.

Reese Kaine reminds us that the Daria Sounds Archive is still alive and well, with some of the funniest things NOT heard on TV. Check it out. The question-and-answer stuff is hysterical.

On PPMB, Wouter has posted a picture showing Daria as normally seen and Daria in his manga style. Nice work.

More "Computer Freebies" added at left, near the bottom: wallpaper, icons, etc.

Last, but hardly least, a new T-shirt that has appeared on the market . . . oh, my.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Jane: The Pre-Production Years

One of the early cast shots released for Daria had an unusual costume arrangement for Jane Lane. The pic at left is a slightly modified view taken from a much larger image. I look at it now and then . . . and make a face. That blue jacket, red shirt, brown boots, none of that really goes together. Jane wasn't a fashion plate, but she was an artist and had some sensibilities about color and other things. She had a look. What were they thinking here? The black-and-red final product was much more striking.

Still, it made me wonder how else Jane might have looked in the series. She changed outfits now and then, more often than Daria did, for sure, but not as often as Quinn (of course). This might be a good artistic Iron Chef to tinker with, taking Jane and creating some of her alternate selves, how she might have looked if . . . [fill in the blank]. Maybe the Jane in the pic at left is colorblind. Who knows.

Speaking of Iron Chefs, a new Iron Chef has appeared on PPMB, though with no takers so far. It's called "Adjustable Rate Mortgage," by TheSecretSharer. What if Daria or Jane lost their home due to foreclosure? Actually, I think this has already happened to Jane Lane and John Lane in a few fanfics, but not to Jane in a more-or-less canon continuum. That would be interesting.

Update time for fanfic, long overdue.

Lawndale Online
  • Avalon, by legendeld (Part 3): It's going to be hard to be a litterbug in Lawndale without these three girls finding out . . . and possibly doing something about it.
  • Daria d'Arc, by LSauchelli: Daria meets God? A weird one, greatly expanded from its original version. To be continued???
  • Expectavi, by Ranchoth (Part 1): The Spindoctor of COBRA has a new secret mission, and a very good reason to think of herself as The Misery Chick.
  • Falling Into College 61: Latitudes, by Richard Lobinske (Part 21): Jake is in agony following an attack by an underwater monster, while everyone else sleeps through the entire thing.
  • Legion of Lawndale Heroes Mini – Benefactor and Inventor, by Roentgen (COMPLETE!): A little golf, a little talk, a little confession: “I want to rule the world, Andrew.”
  • A Little Vacation, by Doggieboy (Part 15): Daria and Jane discover they are cartoons in some other universe. Things warm up with Robert. And what to do with all those guns?
  • My Sons, by legendeld (Part 5): “Don’t suppose we could draw straws and the loser gets a sex change. Nah, you’d look terrible as a guy.”
  • Size Does Matter, by BlackHole (Part 16): Even the onlookers got a workout from that workout.
  • Unnamed Daria/Full Metal Alchemist crossover fragment, by NightGoblyn: Okay, that was truly weird. Never saw FMA, but still, whoa.
and, of course,
More news or whatever soon.

Mad Marchness Munches Muchly

1,400+ views, whee!

Right, enough of that.

Below are some more "adoptable" webpages about Daria, as discussed in an earlier blog post. All are in English. Take your time, look them over, then maybe pick one out and make yourself the resident expert there on Daria. Post pictures, comments, essays, chat, fresh links, messages, anything. Have fun with it. None of these are exclusively fanfic sites; most are informational and allow for reviews and opinions.
A side note: Looking for good Daria screen captures? Try this page in StarPulse. More soon, mebbe.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Is there a difference between canon and canon?

As long as the topic's been brought up, we may as well go at it in depth.

Lately I am of the opinion that canon, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. If you are a fan of a TV, movie, or other media series that makes even the slightest effort to maintain internal consistency, you know what I mean. (You wouldn't be reading this if you weren't.) Nothing is perfect, and some things in any series are going to seem less realistic than others. When you see these less-realistic things, you cringe and grit your teeth, but you move on because the other 98% of the series still keeps up that illusion of reality. This "less real" stuff is what in this fandom is called off-canon canon. It's like a difficult member of the family: that person is still family, so you need to figure out how to deal with him/her/it, then live with your choice no matter what everyone else does.

Fanfic, then. Is Daria fanfic that treats the less-realistic events of the series as fact really fanfic? Of course it is. The author makes the call as to what sort of reality is going into the tale. Authors automatically have this right. The only true yardstick for determining if a tale is fanfic is this: Is it a story that has a connection to the series, at least in your mind? If the answer is yes, then the tale is fanfic. No quibbles. Respecting the intent of the creator is not the point. The creator is done with the work. It is the audience's turn to create and reflect back what was seen. Many interpretations of a work are possible. No two people see the same Mona Lisa.

Let's take a non-Daria example that I remember from my childhood: My Three Sons.

I used to watch the original episodes of this show before it went into reruns on Nick at Night. It was a family-oriented sitcom about a widower named Steve Douglas, played by Fred MacMurray, who worked in the aerospace industry. He had three sons and a male housekeeper, and the show was simply about their daily life, struggles, and minor adventures. I watched it all the time as a kid. (I can still hear the saxophone music from the opening credits in my head.) It was a very warm, very engaging, and more-or-less realistic show.

So, in January 1967, in the show's seventh season (it ran for twelve, I think), there was an episode called, "You Saw a What?" I watched it when I was in sixth grade. The youngest son, a geeky kid with glasses named Ernie, went out camping or hiking or something, and he saw a flying saucer. He came back and told everyone, but they didn't believe him. (Like, duh.) Then he went back out, saw it again, and took pictures of it. He gave the film to his father, who had it developed at his company's lab—and quickly got himself contacted by officers of the United States Air Force, in person. The flying saucer was real, but it was USAF property and rated Top Secret. It went off course, ending up where it wasn't supposed to be, and that was how Ernie saw it. It wasn't from Mars; it was from the U.S.A.

Now came the problem: The USAF desperately wanted the whole event hushed up. The Cold War was on, and the saucer was a vital defense project. Leaking any word of it was seen as dangerous in the extreme to national security. However, Ernie was scheduled to go on local TV and talk about seeing the saucer; he was already a hit in the newspapers, even without the photos (which had quietly been seized by the USAF). Dad had to sit down with Ernie and talk about this problem, man to man, as people often did on TV shows in the 1960s.

Ernie thought it over and took the hard way out. He got on TV and made it appear that he was just making everything up. He opened himself to the ridicule of his classmates, and there was a fairly striking scene of Ernie walking through the halls of his school the next day, being taunted and mocked by the other children. He knew what he had seen, but he decided not to tell anyone the truth in order to protect his country. His brothers never even knew. But his dad supported him completely throughout that bad time, and he pulled through. He had to be satisfied with knowing that he had done The Right Thing.

Back to the original point: Was this episode in canon? If I was into the My Three Sons fanfic thing and I wanted to write a sequel to this story, linking the USAF-UFO to the supposed Roswell crash (per the movie Independence Day), would that story be "in canon"? This curious episode was by no means completely out of place on this series. A couple years earlier was an episode in which a circus lion escaped and got into the Douglas house, hiding in the attic. Would the UFO episode then be "realistic" enough for fanfic?

Well, is there any comparable event in actual history by which one could measure the reality of this event? Let's see, I remember the time when the USAF dropped a hydrogen bomb on a family home in South Carolina. It was a goofy accident, perfectly understandable, the sort of thing that used to happen all the time and occasionally still does. It couldn't be kept a secret because, well, it landed on someone's home and destroyed it. Everybody laughs about it nowadays.

But it really happened.

The UFO story isn't so weird after all, especially since the US government used to try to make flying saucers for real. So, would a story about Ernie's UFO be "canon-worthy"?

Everyone makes their own call. If someone writes a story about Metalmouth, the insane high-school shop teacher from "Legends of the Mall" who left his steel dentures on the door handle of Helen Morgendorffer's SUV, then I guess that's canon, if it doesn't violate anything else about the show as presented.

And blooming crutches and wormholes in Chinese restaurants are canon, too. Party on.

March Madness Madly Marches

I think I wrote something about basketball a few days ago, but I can't be bothered to go back and look. I mean, who cares, it's just a game. We have Daria to talk about.

One of the nice things about the Internet (which is spelled with a capital I by all literate, sophisticated, civilized adults who can properly spell) is the appearance of encyclopedia websites like Wikipedia that anyone can edit, even complete doofuses who spell Internet with a lower-case i. Daria fan sites and informational entries are no exception. Anyone can adopt a webpage about a favored topic and wax eloquent about it to the exclusion of all else, and if there was ever a topic worth waxing about, it is Daria.

We have the beloved DariaWiki, of course, but it never hurts to have more, more, MORE. Below are some adoptable webpages concerning Our Heroine (Jane Lane) and her sidekick Daria Morgendorffer. I have no idea exactly how adoptable (and adaptable) these are, but some note that you can add links, pictures, essays, message-board posts, and whatnot to them, even correcting descriptive information and adding your own. It's worth a try, and if you have some free time over lunch or after work to fix things the way you like them to be fixed, give it a shot.

But why do this, you ask? Because these links keep coming up on search engines, that's why. Any person researching Daria will always find one or more of them. And the more people we co-opt into supporting the DVDaria campaign, the better. True? Be an activist and go for it.

Note: This is the first installment of adoptable pages. There are quite a few of them out there.

Take your pick. As I said, more to come.

P.S. If you want to use some of the Daria pictures from this blog, feel free. I messed with a few of them to improve quality when possible, or to make a point (Quinn with pi on her shirt, for instance). Use 'em if you like 'em.

The Other Saint Patrick's Day, Sort Of

Today is the real Saint Patrick's Day, only for religious reasons it isn't the real Saint Patrick's Day, so here is the Holiday Island version of same who has nothing religious about him at all. Perfect. He and Tiffany should go out, only he's probably too short for her. And why doesn't he have any fanfic about him? He's Irish! Everyone loves the Irish, more or less. Fanfic, people, fanfic! Begora! Or however you spell that. I should look up to see what that means. (LATE ADD: It's actually "begorra" and means "by God!" Irish is such an interesting language.)

"Depth Takes a Holiday" was such a whacked-out episode, and it had one of the best lines in the entire series, when Quinn tells Daria, "That's the problem with you brains: you think lying is child's play." I wish I had written that. That is an awesome line.

It has been instructive for me, a latecomer to Daria fandom, to read some of the essays written about
"Depth Takes a Holiday" when it first aired. Some examples are given here. The feelings are quite intense and rather raw.

Some fans loved the episode, though. I confess that, because of the episode's weirdness and because it opens the door for all sorts of bizarre "canon" fanfics (and because it treated itself as "realistic," did not violate character, and did not break the fourth wall to crudely wink at the viewer), I rather like that episode. I like it a lot, in fact, and it remains one of my all-time favorites.

Which episode is my least favorite? Actually, I'd have to say "Daria!" (the musical). It committed at least three hideous sins:

  1. It broke the fourth wall, which is not a bad thing in itself but, with the singing and dancing, it reduced the episode to complete silliness.
  2. It had singing and dancing. I don't like musicals.
  3. It presented a situation so out-of-character for the participants and so in violation of all previous episode continuity that it became impossible to explain even when using fantastic explanations, except to say that nothing that happens in the series was meant to make any sense. I can handle a wormhole in the back of a Chinese restaurant leading to Holiday Island, but not singing and dancing and violating the fourth wall during a hurricane. Maybe I just have a lack of imagination, but that was one thing too many for me to swallow.

"Daria!" - No.

"Depth Takes a Holiday" - Yes, very.

One odd thing about "Depth Takes a Holiday," though: Who was Halloween talking to on the telephone when she was planning mischief in a rich neighborhood? ("Just get the toilet paper and meet me out front and we'll play it by ear. Oh, and don't forget the eggs.") I never figured that out. Anyone have a good idea? Talk about loose ends. (Fanfic, people, fanfic!)

Meanwhile, on PPMB, we have new screen captures of Daria the Superhero in Paragon City. I like this series; the pictures are wild. More soon.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

The History of Retirement by Rocket: Part 1

The world's first liquid-fuel rocket was launched 82 years ago today by American rocket scientist Robert H. Goddard, who later invented the bazooka. This act of genius set the stage for the first actual Retirement by Rocket spaceflight in 1998, when the Hon. John H. Glenn Jr. flew aboard the shuttle Discovery (STS-95) at the age of 77, becoming the oldest spacefarer on Earth. He retired from spaceflight thereafter. It is possible that his flight sparked the idea for the Sick, Sad World segment (aired in June 2001 on "Boxing Daria"), though some disagree.

The world's first liquid-fuel rocket launch site is now part of the ninth hole on a golf course in Auburn, Massachusetts. Maybe Daria and Jane played golf there in college.

I will add more Daria-related news to this post as soon as I can figure some out. I don't recall Daria and Jane launching model rockets in fanfic. Pity. There's some SF stuff, though.

Oh, also must say that Richard Lobinske has updated the list of 2008 Daria Visual Fanworks, links to which are in the left column, down there somewhere.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Saint Patrick's Day, Sort Of

Since today is sort of Saint Patrick's Day but sort of not, here is Tiffany, who is dressed like a leprechaun but is not, so far as we know. Bet you thought I was going to use the guy from Holiday Island, ha ha.

Stories featuring things related to Saint Patrick's Day almost always have the Holiday Island guy (e.g., "Restrain Jane Lane! or Stupid Cupid," by Nemo Blank; "Everything Happens For a Reason," by Mahna Mahna; "Holiday Kombat," by Richard Lobinske; "A Curse of Bad Timing," by SoulfulZen). One in a while they feature a leprechaun in a commercial in a scriptfic (e.g., "Snow Darn!" by Patrick Moore). Other than talking about Irish coffee, Irish setters, Irish brogues, Irish jogs, or Irish red beer, not much else comes up. No traditional leprechauns, certainly. No visits to Ireland that I know of. Hmmm.

Wonder what would happen if Saint Patty's Day came back to Lawndale to fulfill his promise to Daria in "Depth Takes a Holiday": "And if there's ever anything I can do for youwhen you've reached the legal drinking age, that islet me know." That'd be interesting. Especially if they got drunk together and . . . mmm, let's skip that part. And the kid.

Fun to think about, though.