|Last appearance||Is It College Yet?|
|Voiced by||Sarah Drew|
|Episode count||41 |
2 TV movies
|Occupation||Student at Lawndale High|
Stacy Rowe was a freshman (and later sophomore and junior) at Lawndale High, and secretary of the Fashion Club; a quartet of fashion-obsessed teenage girls who held regular meetings to discuss various facets of the fashion world and, in their own words, "solve crimes against fashion." She was the first person to meet and greet Quinn Morgendorffer in the first episode, saying "you look cool!".
Stacy was constantly insecure to the point of neurosis and would hyperventilate or burst into tears when bad things happened to her... or even over minor issues, like the time she thought she was wearing stretchpants ("Road Worrier").
Stacy was perceived as "the weakest link" of the Fashion Club by club president Sandi Griffin and was sometimes humiliated and verbally abused by her. While she viewed the other Club members as friends, they often seemed to ignore her: in "Fair Enough", her mass-crying over being stood up was not only ignored, Tiffany Blum-Deckler actually asked if that meant the guy was available. The idea of being excluded or on the outs with the club was one of the things that set her off: in "Is It Fall Yet?", she utterly collapses when it comes out that Sandi and Tiffany didn't tell her something.
She constantly sought the attention and approval of fellow Fashion Club member Quinn and would often side with Quinn when her friend butted heads with Sandi Griffin before getting bullied into taking Sandi's side. In a memorable scene from "Gifted," Stacy completely relinquishes her own tastes so they become exactly like Quinn's, a change that Quinn didn't approve of and made her leave the house. It is shown on that episode that Stacy looks up to Quinn and considers her to be her best friend, sometimes to a point that even Quinn cannot tolerate. It should be noted, however, that Quinn may consider Stacy to be her best friend, as well: In the beginning of "Of Human Bonding," when Quinn is only allowed to invite one friend for sleepover, Stacy is her first choice.
Her academic ability and intellect was mediocre: her P-STAT in "Is It Fall Yet?" was only 940 and she made very dumb comments when being tutored, and in "Lucky Strike" she's horrified at the thought of a 200-word essay and copies Sandi's essay even though it's being handed to the same teacher. Notably, "IIFY?" has tutor David Sorenson note that Stacy is trying to learn, even though it's clearly not going well. Whether further sessions would've helped her is unknown, as she had a freakout soon after.
Development in Season 5
During Season Five of Daria, several episodes spotlighted Stacy. She was the only member of the Fashion Club to be drawn favorably in a group caricature portrait in "Art Burn", and kept hold of the portrait and secretly pinned it up inside her closet. In "Life in the Past Lane", she was astonished by Charles "Upchuck" Ruttheimer III's magic acts and willingly became his assistant, helping him do more elaborate tricks; for one trick, she faked a sobbing fit as part of the illusion that Upchuck was trapped, and memorably chided Sandi 'for being naive' when Sandi fell for the trick. In "Lucky Strike", she revealed that, like everyone else, she'd known for ages that Daria Morgendorffer was Quinn's sister but was just being polite by not bringing it up.
In "Fat Like Me", she and Tiffany Blum-Deckler were left to run the Fashion Club all by themselves... which, in practice, meant Stacy was running the club and trying desperately to keep it from falling apart (more). At the end, she finally snapped and tore into Tiffany for not bothering to lift a finger to help: her first outburst of anger on the show. When the Club reformed, Stacy showed new backbone by openly supporting Quinn.
In the second movie Is It College Yet?, Stacy wished that Sandi would stop talking at her birthday. Sandi then came down with laryngitis and Stacy believed it was her fault (Sandi went as far as calling Stacy a "saboteur"). She spent most of her scenes in the film trying to 'cure' Sandi through voodoo and magic. Even though it was proved that it wasn't Stacy's fault, Sandi tried to get her to do a list of "chores" as an apology. Stacy quietly refused and decided to take a sabbatical from the Fashion Club, showing backbone once more: in doing so, she was the cause for the whole Club to break up, which she still found an upsetting thought (even though it was clear they were all going to keep hanging out anyway). (Note: It is disputed whether The Fashion Club still exist as an hierarchical group in the post-canon.)
Out of the members of the Fashion Club, Stacy quickly became a fan favorite of many fans of the series. Indeed, in spite of receiving little attention during the course of the series, many fans have devoted time and energy on fan fiction regarding Stacy and her struggles fitting in with the Fashion Club and her struggle to fit in and stand up for herself.
The Sweet Stacy archetype is rather basic: she is what she seems, a cute and sweet teenager, a paradigm which provides great material for shippers. The Angst Guy's "Wish Upon a Fallen Star" is such an example.
One recurring theme in fanfics making use of Stacy plays off of her perceived weaknesses, turning her into a target for disaster. Stacy has appeared in a number of horror tales as a victimized, doomed protagonist (e.g., Yui Daoren's critically acclaimed work, "The Emancipation of Stacy Rowe," or Angelinhel's "Crimson Sunset"), though she is sometimes depicted as suffering in defense of others or standing up for a cause she believes in, making her travails heroic (e.g., TAG's "Unto the End"). This portrayal of Stacy is an example of what is known in literature as Women In Refrigerators syndrome. As such, she also fits the media-character trope known as the woobie.
It must be pointed out that sometimes Doomed Stacy stories are written by those who wish to tweak some of Stacy Rowe's more ardent and vocal living fans. See below for details.
Another (albeit rarer) theme involving Stacy has her somehow turning to the darker side of her nature. In most of these depictions, Stacy is seen almost as the archetype of a vampire: cruel, cunning, and amoral, with no hesitation or remorse about harming or even killing others, and lascivious almost to the point of being a sexual predator. In some of these stories, Stacy has also developed some form of supernatural or superhuman abilities, and has no qualms about using them. Stories of this type include "No More Ms. Nice Vampire" from the Daria the Hunter series, "Daria Vs. The Lawndale Zombies," "Where's Mary Sue When You Need Her?," and the Legion of Lawndale Heroes series. Examples of non-super Dark Stacys appear in Angelinhel's "We All Fall Down," Brother Grimace's "Word of the Week," NightGoblyn's "Evil Daria Vignettes," and TAG's "Stacy in Hell."
An interesting variation on Sweet Stacy, this variation of Stacy shows her either in the process of becoming more mature to insightful onlookers, or shows her at some time in the future, where we see that she is no longer the quintessential victim of "kick the cat" syndrome. Maturing Stacy fics focus on how Stacy realizes that the world of high school is a transitory one, and (usually behind the backs of her fellow Fashion Club members) endeavors to better herself academically, culturally, and socially, with positive results. Another trademark of these stories is that we find Stacy to be quite intelligent (albeit crippled by her home life, parents, or by the Fashion Club itself), as well as a capable student and source of useful information. In many cases, Maturing Stacy is actually a pale shadow of Daria herself, but without her own Jane Lane to provide unconditional support and friendship.
The first major work to display this Stacy variation was Austin Covello's "A Day in the Life of Stacy", but can also be seen in Brother Grimace's "Lunchtime, Doubly So..." and Nemo Blank's "Ring Toss." We also see echoes of this variation in the Year Two stories of the Legion of Lawndale Heroes series and in TAG's "Outcasts from Beyond," both of which depict Stacy as a superhero. A variation of this theme can be found in Richard Lobinske's story, "A Daze at the Races." Stacy Rowe's revitalized appearance in Ruthless Bunny's "Bed and Breakfast Man" is a wonder to behold.
Stacy, the Sex Machine
A twisted, yet interesting variant located somewhere between Sweet Stacy and Dark Stacy is 'Stacy, the Sex Machine'. This Stacy can be of almost any emotional nature and stage of maturity, and primarily defined by her interest, desire and (sometimes) proven skill in the arena of physical intimacy and gratification. We see this image of Stacy in stories such as Prince Charon's Leather Chef: 'One Week of (Very) Personal Service', psychotol's Roofies Roulette, and in Gystex's The Passion Club.
Inspired by her future-ego at the end of Is It College Yet?, this variation depicts Stacy as either being a skilled race driver or, at the very least, showing some interest in motorsport. This Stacy is often shown as having hidden this quirk away from the rest of the Fashion Club, and embracing it wholeheartedly once away from the group. Fics that include this variation include many parts of Richard Lobinske's "Falling Into College" series (Stacy drives for her father's team), and The Excellent S's "Rowe'd Racin'" (Stacy drives in a high-level NASCAR-like series).
In 2007, a debate was started at PPMB about the interpretation of Stacy in Daria fan fiction. It was proposed that Sweet Stacy and Maturing Stacy were the most accurate portrayals of the character and assumed that many other interpretations didn't adhere to canon or, at worst, created a gross misinterpretation of the character.
While there has been some support for this point of view, many Daria fans have remained indifferent to the debate or held to the belief that the canon portrayal of Stacy is somewhat of a balance between the Sweet Stacy and Doomed Stacy personas, with the events of the fifth season of Daria and Is It College Yet? moving her personality slightly into the Maturing Stacy category.
- Stacy's last name was never revealed in the series, instead being mentioned on one of MTV's Daria sites. Anne D. Bernstein later confirmed it. Until the name "Rowe" appeared, the fandom-generated last name for Stacy was "Nibblett," courtesy of Danny Bronstein, although it came to prominence in the fanfiction of Austin Covello.
- Stacy's first voice was provided by actor Jessica Zaino, who also gave school psychologist Margaret Manson her voice.
- Stacy's second, and arguably more recognizable, voice was provided by actor Sarah Drew, who was originally only supposed to give a one-time voice-over for the show. Impressed, the casting directors offered her the role of Stacy. Ms. Drew has gone on to an acclaimed acting career.
- In Daria fandom, Stacy is sometimes considered the most physically attractive member of the Fashion Club (as opposed to Quinn Morgendorffer, who is considered the cutest member). This depiction is seen in the Legion of Lawndale Heroes series and "Ring Toss."
- Stacy is well-known for wearing her hair in braids or pigtails. For formal events she is usually seen wearing her hair down, with no specific styling regimen to enhance it (the "natural look").
- Fanfic portrayals of Stacy, in her role of Fashion Club secretary, show her (while carrying out her duties) as a very accurate recorder of detail and a encyclopedia of knowledge relating to matters within and outside the world of fashion. This is one of the points emphasized in the Maturing Stacy depiction and is best illustrated in "A Day in the Life of Stacy," although in Legion of Lawndale Heroes, Jane recognizes Stacy's abilities and asks for help during the second election for Legion Leader.
- Stacy's depiction in romantic story lines is primarily with the Sweet Stacy image, with a gentle innocence and a playful mischievousness included. Because of this, many of Stacy's romantic liaisons in fanfic occur with Ted DeWitt-Clinton (as he is seen as innocent as she is) and, surprisingly, with Quinn in slash fanfic. The Stacy/Ted pairing was taken to an horrific extreme in the fanfic "Stacy in Hell." Nonetheless, one still sees depictions of her as "Stacy, the Sex Machine."
- Stacy's shoe size is 6 1/2 AA.
Stacy in the future according to Is It College Yet? alter egos
- Wikipedia's full article on the Fashion Club
- Stacy's character profile at Outpost Daria
- MTV's Daria site, where the Fashion Club's 'Selective Soulmate Profiles' are listed
- Stacy Rowe Fan Site
- The Stacy Phenomenon An examination of the popularity of Stacy Rowe by Austin Covello.