Is It Fall Yet?
|Is It Fall Yet?|
|Original Airdate||August 27th, 2000|
|Special Guest Voices||Carson Daly|
|Written By||Glenn Eichler|
|Directed By||Karen Disher|
Is It Fall Yet? is the first Daria TV movie. It was first aired on August 27, 2000.
The movie covers events during the summer between Daria Morgendorffer's junior and senior years of high school, after the episode "Dye! Dye! My Darling" and before "Fizz Ed". At 59 minutes duration, the movie is roughly equivalent to 3 'normal' episodes.
In Lawndale High, students wrap up the finishing school year and prepare for the summer vacation: Brittany and Kevin will work as lifeguards in the local pool; Mack has a job driving an ice cream truck; Jodie, to her annoyance, has a full set of activities prepared, including golf lessons, an internship in a senator’s office, fund raising, working in a crises center and volunteering at a soup kitchen.
Jane, in these final school days, after her breakup with Tom Sloane and the related events, is giving Daria the cold shoulder. After much insistence from the latter, Jane eventually reveals she will spend the summer in Ashfield, an art colony outside Lawndale, though she refuses to talk about Tom, showing to still be hurt by their betrayal.
In the sophomore class, when the PSAT results arrive and Quinn’s score is lower than she had expected, she decides to hire a tutor for the summer. Quinn tries to keep this a secret, but Sandi is only too happy to spill the beans to the other students. However, the enthusiastic reaction from the The Three Js prompts the rest of the Fashion Club (who had had even lower PSAT results than Quinn) to hire a tutor too.
Daria begins tentatively to date Tom, but things start badly due to Daria’s inexperience and feelings of guilt on the way Tom and Jane had broken up. She has trouble admitting in public they are dating and that Jane and Tom are no longer a couple. Things are not helped by the Sloane’s fortune and higher social standing, which drives an edge on both their and their families’ relations. An incidental meeting with Kay, Angier and Elsie in their club goes awkwardly, as also goes the polite refusal of the Morgendorffers to attend a very expensive charity event.
Too add to this situation, Helen forces Daria to volunteer as a counselor in Timothy O’Neill’s Okay To Cry Corral summer camp. Along with O’Neill and Daria is Anthony DeMartino, who has joined the camp in the hope of rediscovering his joys of teaching. Daria is assigned several children, including a depressed and angry boy named Link. Due to O’Neill’s over-protective nature, the camp is everything but fun, with teachers and counselors alike spending all day indoors indulging in boring tasks, despite the kids repeated pleas to play outside.
Summer also goes on for the other Lawndale High students: Kevin and Brittany, as lifeguards in the pool, spend more time enjoying each others' company than watching kids. Mack has a bad time having to put up with bratty children as an ice cream truck driver. Plus he doesn’t even see Jodie, who can’t make time to be with him due to her many summer activities.
Arriving at the art camp, Jane is very turned-off by Daniel Dotson, the self-aggrandizing main teacher. She befriends Alison, an older female artist who is nice and shares Jane’s low opinion of Dotson. The two start to bond, especially when the other students dismiss Jane for her youth and strong opinions. However, it turns out this good relation was just a plot for Allison to try sleep with her, leaving Jane hurt and confused.
Meanwhile, at Lawndale, Quinn’s attempts to study with her tutor, David Sorenson, have a bad start. During their initial study session, as Quinn pays more attention to trivial interruptions than to the teacher, David is ready to quit, berating Quinn for lack of trying, lack of knowledge and superficial interests and concluding she does not belong in college. This shocks Quinn into explaining her desire to improve her PSAT scores and begging David to stay, promising to do better. David’s interactions with the rest of the Fashion club are not as good: he tries to tutor Sandi, only to walk out when she dismisses his teachings and serious attitude; Tiffany prefers to spend tutoring time applying make-up, barely paying attention when he leaves; and Stacy is the only to make an effort, but her lack of self-confidence combined with feeling left out when Sandi and Tiffany don’t told her they had quit eventually make her quit tutoring too.
Summer goes on and OK to Cry Corral initially keeps on with the same boring and ineffectual activities. O’Neill attempts to bound and counsel Link, only for the youngster to call O’Neill on his inability to help and put in evidence what is wrong with the camp. Later, however, as all councilors and children are doing another pointless indoor bounding activity, DeMartino has a psychotic break, tears down the window and leads the children on an outdoor hike. Daria takes the opportunity, plus the fact they had gone in a secret walk before, to try to approach Link, who starts to open up. However, the moment is ruined by O’Neill.
The camp ends a few days later, with the children ignoring O’Neill and widely acclaiming DeMartino, for his part in the hike and having earlier shouted at the camp bully. The history teacher parts giving practical and sound advice to the youngsters, his faith in teaching restored. Daria tries still to connect with a cold and dismissive Link, offering her contact and a friendly ear.
At Ashfield, Jane keeps herself busy working on her art as an escape valve for her frustrations. She and Allison eventually meet and talk. After an initial awkwardness, as they tentatively try to remain friends, Jane is disgusted when she notes Allison’s involved with Dotson. The older girl makes light of it, noting that Jane takes everything too seriously, an argument that angers the younger woman.
In Lawndale, after several blunders at the pool, Kevin and Brittany end up fired. Mack, who by that time has made enough money to settle his debts and even take Jodie out, convinces them to take over his job. This works out well from the children, who take advantage of the duo’s lack of simple arithmetic skills to eat all the ice cream they want without paying a cent.
On the other hand, Daria’s summer hits rock bottom when, after trying to avoid Tom, she provokes a fight with him. Daria starts by justifying her dating uneasiness on their different social levels and defending Jane when Tom unintentionally makes a disparaging comment about her, but he is able to put her on the spot by pointedly stating she’s the one afraid to get hurt by the relationship. When Daria doesn’t reply, he breaks up with her and drives off. Between this event, Link’s rejection and her sister’s request for advice about David, for whom she is starting to fall for, Daria desperately phones Jane and begs to go visit her. Jane first refuses, but then relents and indicates Trent’s upcoming gig at bar nearby.
Daria takes a ride to the art camp in the Mystik Spiral van, with Trent driving and trying to console her. However, his efforts contrast with him chanting aloud a song about betrayal. Arriving at Ashfield, they are received by Jane, who first shows Daria her works and listens of Daria’s take about Link before the two of them go out to talk about their situation. They first get into a heated argument about who blew the other off for Tom (referring to when Jane was spending time with Tom and, later, when Daria started dating him) before Jane emotionally reveals her pain at the fact Daria had almost destroyed their friendship just to have a boyfriend. Seeing Jane hurt, Daria remorsefully apologizes. Jane forgives her and the two young women resume their friendship as Mystik Spiral plays a song dedicated to friendship.
The next day, Daria explains the reasons for her breakup as she prepares to leave with Trent. Jane listens and then advises her friend to give Tom another chance, stating that, this time, she is really over Daria and Tom’s betrayal and that they could make a good couple.
At Lawndale, Quinn’s tutoring has paid off as she has worked hard and much improved her academic knowledge throughout the summer. In the last session, Quinn boldly asks David out, but is heartbroken when he politely turns her down, still due to her superficiality. She goes pour her heart out to her sister, who consoles her by pointing out she has learned a lot and is not stupid, and that people have to give each other chances, even if sometimes the others are not receptive. Helen, who had overheard the conversation, tries to play Daria’s advice on her, to no effect. However, Daria’s argument is proven correct when she receives a short letter from Link, inviting her to write back.
So the summer vacation ends and school resumes. In the first day, Quinn surprises the new junior class by correctly answering DeMartino’s question about Manifest Destiny and then calmly deflecting Sandi’s attacks on her new found ‘nerdiness’.
Returning from school, Daria and Jane talk about their summers when they are met by Tom in his new car. Jane pleasantly greets him and then leaves for him and Daria to talk. Tom offers Daria a ride home and, arriving there, he pleads her for a second opportunity for their relation, conceding about their differences and noting her difficulties in dating. After some hesitation, Daria shyly indicates she also is willing to try again and the two indulge in some smooching.
This scene is watched by Helen from the living room window, who happily reminisces about the changes undergone by both her daughters during the summer. Jake’s answer is first apparently clueless... before he smiles, indicating he’s making a joke (something he had not been capable off during the whole summer). He then proceeds to (off-camera) chase his wife around the house for some old couple’s fun.
After the premiere, "Daria", "Jane", "Quinn", "Tom" and "Trent" answered fans' questions in an MTV online chat (see External Links). According to Jane, she and Daria weren't invited to the film's premiere party.
DeMartino chucking the sink through the camp's window so he can escape is a tip of the hat to One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, where Chief Bromden does the same thing with a water fountain.
Daria and Quinn are both stated (by Helen and Daria respectively) to hide their real selves behind masks for fear of what would happen if their real selves were shown. While this concept had been raised in both "Quinn the Brain" (Quinn) and "Psycho Therapy" (both, with Daria casually admitting to it), this is the first time it was made explicit that both of them are using the same tactic.
Alison is the sole character to be confirmed as non-heterosexual in Daria's entire run, and unfortunately follows the "predatory lesbian/bisexual" stereotype.
The original end credits song - "I May Hate You Sometimes" by The Posies - was not included on the videos or DVDs due to cost reasons. However, a different licensed song - "Sixteen and Confused" by Parade of Losers - was used, instead of a new generic track or the Daria theme.
Edited versions by Noggin
When shown later in the United States on the network known as The N, it appeared in an edited form. Much of the plot involving Jane and Alison was removed, including two full scenes and most of a third scene. (It's debatable whether this plot was removed due to its lesbian context. However, given the adult themes of those scenes, including underage drinking, it's likely that similar scenes with a male suitor would also have been excised). Other edits include removing a number of potentially offensive words (including damn and suck) and lines (such as the announcement of voluntary urine testing).
Daria and Quinn's Reading Material
During the lanyards session, Daria starts reading Fifth Business by Robertson Davies (misspelt "Roberson" in the animation).
Daria tells Link that as a child, she was a fan of George Orwell. (This turns up again in "Camp Fear")
Daria references Henry James novels when talking about how awkward she felt around the Sloane's.
To cover up being in Daria's room, Quinn pretends she's borrowing Daria's copy of A Journal of the Plague Year.
On the DVD set
On the Daria DVD set Daria: The Complete Animated Series, Is It Fall Yet? is not placed chronologically with the episodes. If you wish to watch everything in order, then after Dye! Dye! My Darling, go to the Final Disc in the set, "Extras", and you will find the movie there under "Extras", and then "Movies". After watching it, you can return to the disc you were on and watch Fizz Ed.
Is It Fall Yet? and Fanfic
On Is It Fall Yet?
- Summary of Is It Fall Yet? at Outpost Daria
- Transcript of Is It Fall Yet? at Outpost Daria (includes sections removed in later showings)
- Is It Fall Yet? on Wikipedia
- Post-Movie Chat Transcript
Fanfiction Related to Is It Fall Yet?
- "Daria's Addition" by TAG (toward the story's end)
- "Is It Doom Yet?" by Richard Lobinske
- "The Van Ride," by Medea42