Daria: The Complete Animated Series
Daria: The Complete Animated Series (2010) was the long-awaited DVD release for Daria.
- 1 Development
- 2 Reaction
- 3 Release
- 4 Episodes
- 5 Music
- 6 Extras
- 7 Not included=
In July 2009, TVShowsOnDVD.com announced that a DVD release for the series was planned for 2010. In November 2009, more details emerged about the upcoming release regarding how it would be distributed and potential extras. It was also revealed that due to high licensing costs, much of the music on the show will be replaced by covers or sound alike songs on the DVD release.
In January 2010, MTV released a teaser trailer on its website for Daria's 2010 release. The release date of which was confirmed on February 8 to be May 11, 2010 by Paramount Home Entertainment and subsequently TVShowsOnDVD.com.
The period between the announcement of the Daria DVD set and its actual arrival (The Great Anticipating) was marked by a number of fan reactions. They included:
- Curiosity as to why the DVD release was announced in such a low-key manner (as a teaser advertisement on the DVD set for MTV's The State.)
- Worry about whether the "core fandom" (as represented by those participating in traditional fan forums) would have any say in how the DVD series was put together (a bit of conceit on the fandom's part).
- Worry about the quality of the DVDs, their contents, whether they would be edited or altered (as per The-N), whether the original music would be kept, how many DVDs would be in the set, what DVD regions would it be for, where could one buy the DVDs at the lowest cost with the largest number of free T-shirts, and so on.
- The gradual realization that the "core fandom" was not the actual market target. The "core fandom" accounted for only a thousand people at most. The actual market target was the quarter-million-plus fans who signed on with the official Facebook site for Daria at Daria World, not to mention all the other long-time fans who had never been involved with the Daria fandom at all. Superfans such as Kara Wild were able to pass along to MTV some of the PPMB members' wishes regarding the series, at least.
- The gradual realization that new fans brought in by the DVD release were not likely to migrate immediately to the old timers' watering holes (PPMB, etc.). The new fans were heading for newly launched social networking sites on Facebook, MySpace, and so on. The old timers were... well, old.
To the surprise of everyone, three fans received their long-awaited DVD sets on Wednesday, April 28, 2010; two of them having purchasing them from a pre-release website affiliated with MTV and Amazon.com. (The other fan was Kara Wild, who received them as a gift for her coordination with MTV as part of the DVDaria campaign.) The set was officially released on May 11 that year. Reaction was strongly positive, but negative reactions sounded for the missing music, package design, and discovery that "Is It College Yet?" was the shorter version from the original DVD release and not the original from the first broadcast of the film. The opening titles were cut from most of the episodes, excluding the first episode on each disc, meaning that the "Broadway" version of the opening theme commissioned for "Daria!" was cut.
The missing music was the number one complaint, but thanks to various legal issues it could not be helped. MTV anticipated a negative fan response. Glenn Eichler wrote an introduction to the set making reference to the issue and poking fun at the fandom kicking off "a raging, decade-long debate over the collection's merits." He stated that "the cost of licensing the many music bites [they] used would have made it impossible to release the collection (and for many years did)."
The DVD was later re-release within a tin box as the Collector's Set.
Australian release (Region 0)
Australia gained the DVD set from Beyond Home Entertainment on July 1st 2011 - while meant to be a Region 4 release (Australasia and South America), it was actually Region 0 and can be played anywhere on Earth.
Sadly, the packaging for the Australian release was quite shoddy: users had to exert a lot of force to extract the discs, making people worry about breaking them. It's recommended that you get an alternate package for them, like CD cases.
It was later rereleased in Region 4 as the Year Book Edition.
United Kingdom and Ireland
The Complete Series has never been released in either the UK or Ireland. A complete first series was released in 2016. The series was a rare case where the British film certificate was more restrictive than the Irish certificate: the DVD boxset is suitable only for those aged 12 and above in the UK, but has only a parental-guidance rating in Ireland. This is presumably because some earlier VHS releases of Daria were given the 12 certificate in the UK for references to self-harming, drugs and sex.
All 65 episodes and both movies are included, however the movies are both on the final disk under "Extras" rather than in chronological order: after seeing "Dye! Dye! My Darling" on disk 6 you have to switch to disk 8 for "Is It Fall Yet?", then go back to disk 6 for "Fizz Ed". There are no instructions to do this for first-time viewers.
The background music has been completely redone, due to the costs of licensing all the song samples played in the show. Some of the new tracks came from Paul Robb, Compound Music, and Pump Music, credited for "Additional Music". G & E Music remixed all of the replacements into the episodes, using libraries like Extreme Music.
While the fandom is divided on how much they tolerate this (many having fond memories of the song clips), most of the new music is fitting and does not seem out of place, aside from a few pieces (the music playing during Daria's 'incarceration' in "The Big House" is barely there). There are three episodes where the different music undermines a joke: the reference to the REM video "Everybody Hurts" in "Road Worrier" ("this is just like that REM video"), the various TV themes in "Murder, She Snored", and Daria and Tom responding to high-pitched loud lyrics that simply aren't there in "My Night at Daria's" (it was originally "Crash and Burn" by Savage Garden).
Years later, when they no longer had to be political about it, Chris Marcil, Susie Lewis, and Eichler were asked about the loss of music by Paste Magazine. Marcil said he didn't notice, while Lewis said she missed it. Eichler said while it sometimes jarred him when he heard a very generic piece, he is mostly fine with it and says it's "a much better experience – and fairer to the show — than watching it on, say, Logo or The N with the original music in. Because on those networks the show is jarringly, destructively edited to squeeze in even more ads, or to meet standards and practices guidelines. And the audio is compressed so brutally that the whole episode sounds like it was recorded in a tin can."
The end credit songs have been replaced with reprises of "You're Standing on My Neck", except on "Dye! Dye! My Darling", "Is It Fall Yet?", "One J at a Time", and "Is It College Yet?", where alternate songs are used, and Daria!, where the rough cut of "Manly" from the original broadcast is retained. In the case of "One J at a Time" and "Is It College Yet?", the (instrumental) songs used are newly created; "Dye! Dye!" and "Is It Fall Yet?" use different licensed songs, "I'm Okay" by Clumsy and "Sixteen and Confused" by Parade of Losers respectively. In the case of the films, these changes were done during their first DVD releases. While the new song for "Dye! Dye!" keeps the mournful, melodramatic tone of the episode going, it's not clear why a different song was used for "One J".
There are three instances of leaving the original music in during an episode, all based on characters singing. In "College Bored", an announcer sings along to The Female of the Species by Space, and in "One J at a Time" Tom, Jeffy, and Jake drive out to release a squirrel to the wild they chant "Whoomp! There it is!". In "Legends of the Mall", Girls Just Wanna Have Fun is used during the Metalmouth segment as he speaks the lyrics, but a new recording of the song is used instead of the original.
Since the episode entirely contained original songs, "Daria!" is unedited - aside from the altered opening titles being cut. The original joke of Manly being played over the end no longer exists, however, as there aren't enough other episodes with songs over the end credits to give it a context.
A short character profile for 11 characters from the show. Of these, eight have a "character sketch" option showing you some of the original rough sketches with captioned comments.
- Profiles with the sketch option: Daria, Tom, Jane, Brittany, Upchuck, Quinn, Kevin, Mr. DeMartino
- Without the sketch option: Helen, Jake, Trent
Pilot: Sealed with a Kick
The original pilot animation for Daria, in black and white.
Music Video: Freaking Friends
A music video for the song Freaking Friends, which originally aired with "Is It Fall Yet?"
Daria and Jane Top Ten Countdown
MTV's All Time Top Ten Animated video bumpers featuring Daria and Jane. This does not feature the videos themselves, but is just five minutes of introductions. They never actually say what the top video was, they just announce that it is next.
Only viewable in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) form on a computer with a DVD drive.
The script covers Mystik Spiral's decision to move to another town with a better music scene. Only the members of Mystic Spiral and some newly introduced characters are included, no one else from Daria is in it, nor even mentioned.
Really more of a featurette than a proper behind the scenes segment, this still features new interviews but is only 7 minutes long, two minutes of which is probably clips from the show. Spoiler bits for seasons 4 and 5 if you have not seen them yet.
If you make quick use of your pause button early on in the video there are a lot of interesting sketches that go by too quickly to read, detailing for animators Daria's facial expressions, the walking gait of various characters, and the way Daria's skirt is supposed to sag when she is sitting in various positions.
Sarcastathon 3000 bumpers
For episodes that were featured in a 2001 MTV marathon of the series, the option is given for bumpers from the event to be played in introduction to the relevant episodes. On the disks themselves, these are mislabeled as Daria Day introductions.
MTV posted an segment on their website about the making of the episode Daria! (Daria Musical Interview), which seems to have been made at the same time as the DVD Cast Interview. Why it wasn't included on the DVD, or if they filmed more segments, is unknown.