One J at a Time

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One J at a Time
Production Number 508
Original Airdate May 21st, 2001
Special Guest Voices
Written By Ron Corcillo
A.J. Poulin
Directed By

"One J at a Time" was the eighth episode of the fifth season of Daria (episode number 508). It first aired on MTV on May 21, 2001. It was written by Ron Corcillo and A.J. Poulin.


The Morgendorffer family dinner gets off to a rocky start, thanks to yet another one of Jake's inedible concoctions and Jake's discovery of squirrel-upturned trash cans. When Daria receives a gift of a rare first-edition book from Tom, Quinn shrugs it off -- after all, dating lots of boys means lots of gifts -- until Helen points out that having a steady boyfriend shows maturity and perspective. Quinn interprets this as saying that she doesn't have those qualities, so she resolves to choose a boy from school and date him exclusively.

The Fashion Club is unable to understand Quinn's reasoning, since they believe in the "date many, date often" concept as well, but Sandi makes a show of supporting Quinn in her quest. (Of course, her real motivations are quite different: she reasons that once Quinn is off the market, there will be more boys for them to date.) Unfortunately, the selection process doesn't go well, seeing as how Quinn's standards are very, very rigid. Pressured by Sandi, Quinn finally does an eeny-meeny-miny-mo with the Three Js and selects Jamie White as her steady. It doesn't go well -- Quinn's idea of "communication" is to prattle on constantly over the phone, and when she accuses Jamie of not listening to her (because he slipped away to go to the bathroom), she dumps him. Her next victim is Joey, whom she promptly dumps when he refuses to take her to a sold-out concert (which she heard about from her Fashion Club comrades).

She finally settles on Jeffy, whom she invites over to dinner when Helen convinces Daria to ask Tom over for a get-to-know-him meal... something that Daria's been avoiding because she's afraid of how Jake will act (and how Tom will react in turn to Jake).

The dinner starts out pleasantly enough, but Jake inevitably brings up his war against the squirrels. To Daria's amazement, however, Tom sides with Jake and tells him of his own family's battles with the little animals. When Jeffy also chimes in, all three guys run out into the yard with a trap to try to catch the critter, leaving Helen, Daria, and Quinn behind. Distraught, Quinn runs crying up to her room, and Helen attempts to comfort her by telling her that she is mature enough to have a steady boyfriend, but that she should do whatever makes her happy, even if that means dating lots of different boys.

As Daria and Quinn contemplate the unfathomable behavior of men, the guys enjoy an evening of bonding over a car trip (to release the captured squirrel back into the wild) and a few laps around a go-cart track.

"One J at a Time" and Fanfic[edit]


Daria's Reading Material[edit]

On the DVD, we can see Tom's gift to Daria is a first edition of Thomas Mann's Death in Venice.


  • Quinn chose Jamie to date first (by random selection), Joey, and then Jeffy.
  • On the DVD boxset, this was one of the few episodes to retain a song from the original broadcast: "Whomp! There It Is" by Tag Team, as the characters were singing along to it. Jake is a big fan of the song.
    • The DVD version also had a trance song playing over the credits, rather than the Daria theme like most other episodes - why isn't known.

External Links[edit]

On “One J at a Time” the Episode[edit]

Alternate-Universe Versions of “One J at a Time”[edit]


Alternate Canon Versions of “One J at a Time”[edit]


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Preceded by
Art Burn (507)
Daria Episodes
"One J at a Time," season 5, episode 8
Succeeded by
Life in the Past Lane